Posts Tagged ‘Catch’

Bill in Michigan Would License Online Casino Gaming and Poker – With A Catch

 Bill in Michigan Would License Online Casino Gaming and Poker – With A Catch

After the U. S. Department of Justice issued their famous dictate in 2011 that the Wire Act of 1961 only applied to sports betting, many thought there would be a stampede towards individual states offering online gaming and poker to their constituents. After all, with rising budget deficits and few areas to further tax (or to even raise taxes at all), local and state governments had to find other ways to raise revenues for their coffers. As we’ve seen, however, that expected stampede has been more like a Sunday stroll, with only three states – Delaware, Nevada, and New Jersey – stepping up to pass online gaming regulations.

This doesn’t mean that other states haven’t at least thought about acting. Some shockingly have actually put up bills (sorry, a bit of sarcasm there) for passing regulations on the industry. But, as of yet, there isn’t another state that has joined the trio from 2013. To demonstrate how illogical it has gotten when it comes to passing online gaming and poker regulations, we look towards Michigan for the latest in the legislative world of online gaming politics.

Until late last year, Michigan wasn’t even on the radar for those looking at which state would be the next to pass online gaming regulations. After passing online lottery sales in 2014, the state sprung to life in October 2016, with Michigan State Senator Mike Kowall stating that a bill regulating online gaming and poker regulations could “still pass.” While that bill did make it out of its Senate committee, it did not come to the floor of the Michigan Senate for a vote and, perhaps more importantly, it didn’t have companion legislation in the Michigan House for consideration.

Now, according to Crain’s Detroit Business journalist Lindsay Vanhulle, the Michigan Legislature is trying to accommodate their desire for more money for government while quelling the cries from those anti-gaming forces who would normally look to shut them down. The plan would utilize the three commercial casino gaming outlets licensed by the state – the Motor City Casino, the MGM Grand Detroit, and the Greektown Casino, all located in Detroit – and the Indian casinos as the outlets for online casino gaming. There is one catch that would make the Michigan online industry much different from the others.

Under the legislation being discussed, those in Michigan would be able to access online gaming and poker, but it would only be if they were physically located on a casino property in the Wolverine State. There are a few reasons for this caveat in the Michigan regulations. One is the state casinos and the Indian casinos aren’t happy about potentially losing some of their revenues to online gaming (estimates say that Detroit alone could lose between $ 1.5 and $ 4.5 million if the law passed). If the players were at least on the casino grounds, there could be revenue generated for the casino from other streams (restaurants, shopping, etc.). This doesn’t make much sense to…well, anyone who is talking about the Michigan regulations.

Since players are already in a casino, why would they want to play online? This was a question posed by David Schwartz, the director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada-Las Vegas, when contacted by Vanhulle. “Would you drive to Home Depot to use Amazon to buy something?” Schwartz is quoted by Vanhulle. “I probably wouldn’t, as nice as Home Depot is. I want the convenience of getting something at home.”

The biggest issue seems to be avoiding the constituents of Michigan, however. The state Constitution was amended in 2004 with a clause that required any new gaming expansion – be it live or online – to be put up for referendum to Michigan voters. It would be necessary for those voters to approve of the action by majority vote. The only clause that works around that amendment is if the gaming comes from any of the state operations or the Indian casinos – those arenas can do seemingly whatever they want without approval from the citizens.

Whether this or any legislation in the state of Michigan moves forward is highly unlikely. Although they can talk a good game, politicians in Lansing are going to have a tough road getting the Michigan casino industry to give up any of their profits. It will also be difficult to get through anti-gaming forces, which are being led by anti-online gaming crusader Sheldon Adelson, to even reach the voters for their opinions. As such, don’t expect Michigan to become the fourth state with online gaming and/or poker anytime soon.

Poker News Daily

2016 WSOP Championship Event Day 2C: Gustavo Lopes Day’s Chip Leader, Still Can’t Catch Valentin Vornicu

 2016 WSOP Championship Event Day 2C: Gustavo Lopes Day’s Chip Leader, Still Can’t Catch Valentin Vornicu

The final Day Two is in the books at the 2016 World Series of Poker Championship Event and, although he would emerge with the day’s largest stack, Day 2C chip leader Gustavo Lopes wasn’t able to catch the man who is the overall chip leader, Valentin Vornicu.

A massive throng of 3252 players – larger than most tournament’s starting field – came back for play on Day 2C with Timothy Sheehan atop the leaderboard. The plan was, like their Day 1A/1B brethren, to play five and a half levels on Wednesday and try to get the numbers down to a manageable number for the segregated field to combine on Thursday. The day’s roster of players seemed like it was an invitational for former champions of this event as players such as Phil Hellmuth, Ryan Reiss, Martin Jacobson, Scotty Nguyen, Greg Merson, Joe Hachem and defending champion Joe McKeehen were all a part of the mix.

While Reiss and former fellow World Champion Chris Moneymaker started off the day on the upswing, the story wasn’t the same for other notable names. Felipe Ramos, Allen Cunningham, Vanessa Rousso, Marvin Rettenmaier and Donny Mizrachi (otherwise known as “the Mizrachi brother without a WSOP bracelet”) all would find their way to the rail in the first couple hours of the day’s action. Sheehan himself had his issues, albeit not of his own doing.

Sheehan would find Aces in his pocket and was able to get not one but two opponents to commit their stacks to the center against him. Sheehan had to feel confident with the rockets as one opponent held pocket Kings and the other pocket nines to do battle. Unfortunately for Sheehan, a King on the flop changed everything; once an Ace didn’t come to the rescue on the turn or river, Sheehan would ship some of his stack away and fall out of the chip lead.

As the early evening came around, Lopes would make his move towards the top of the leaderboard. Jacobson was the victim of Lopes as, on a 9-8-7-6-6 board, the duo would get their chips into the center of the felt. Jacobson might have thought he was still good with his 9-8 for a flopped two pair, but with plenty of draws available it might have been a bit of a push. In this instance, Lopes had the goods against him, turning up pocket sevens to show he was never behind and actually caught the unnecessary boat to knock Jacobson out of the tournament.

Sitting with 480K in chips after the knockout of Jacobson, Lopes was able to cruise through the remainder of the Day 2C action. He was able to cut a big chunk of chips from Jeremy Menard on an A-8-2-K-5 board, betting 100K on the river that Menard couldn’t find a way to call for his last 33K in chips. That hand pushed him to 581K and, by the end of the night, Lopes was sitting on a very healthy 630,700 and joined by the Top Five from Day 2C on the overall leaderboard.

1. Valentin Vornicu, 838,000
2. Gustavo Lopes, 630,000*
3. Raffaele Castro, 587,000*
4. Jamie Shaevel, 586,000
5. Alvaro Lopez, 573,000
6. Rafael Moraes, 571,000*
7. Albert Daher, 570,000*
8. Ramin Hajiyev, 558,000
9. Michael Mizrachi, 549,000*
10. Chad Power, 546,000

(* – Day 2C players)

For the first time during the running of the 2016 WSOP Championship Event, the entirety of the field will come together beginning at 11AM on Thursday. Unofficially 2176 players will be a part of the Day 3 proceedings, but there’s a good deal of work left to do for those still involved in the tournament. The $ 63 million-plus prize pool is set to be divided amongst the final 1011 players, meaning that there’s the potential that the money bubble will pop late this evening and, if not tonight, definitely during Friday’s action. While that $ 15,000 min-cash might be nice to some, everyone is still looking for the WSOP World Champion’s bracelet and the $ 8 million payday that will go along with it this November.

Poker News Daily