In this week’s Calling the Clock Lee Davy covers the emergence of Virtue Poker; the excitement of luckychewypoker and an update on EuroPoker.
Virtue Poker looks like it’s going to be an attractive alternative for online poker players. The P2P decentralised poker platform is built upon the Ethereum blockchain meaning there is no need for those dreaded payment processors.
Founder, Ryan Gittleson, talked about the online poker industry being stagnant for a decade, and with PokerStars upsetting their top tier players, there has never been a better time to ‘disrupt’ the market.
During the interview we talked about blockchain technology, what customers will say to their friends when they recommend Virtue Poker and much more.
You can listen to the full interview right here.
Virtue Poker won’t be the only stranger walking around the neighbourhood. Andrew ‘luckychewy’ Lichtenberger is also opening up an online poker room. Lichtenberger’s baby is called luckychewypoker and is currently in play money beta version. The former WPT Alpha8 champ also has plans to open a community forum, blog and online training school.
And there was also an update from an online poker room currently sitting in the knackers yard. EuroPoker.fr went into liquidation two years ago, but the players still haven’t seen a cent due to a protracted row over the refunding of Bonuses and Rakeback.
This week, the French gaming regulator, ARJEL, issued a statement confirming that players will not receive money for both of those things, but they will have their account funds returned. There is only one problem – there are only 2/3rds of the money left meaning someone is going to have to take a few cents less.
Live Tournament News
The World Poker Tour (WPT) Five Diamond World Poker Classic was a hit this week. The Main Event attracted 791 players, tying with the 2007 LA Poker Classic as the largest field for a $10k event in WPT history. The relatively unknown, James Romero, upset the odds to take the $1.9m purse.
Jan Schwippert chopped the $100,000 Super High Roller with Tm Marchese. The Austrian earned $1.4m, and Big Cheese picked up $1m. And Jason Koon had a great time in the $25,000 High Rollers with victory in one and a runner-up finish to Ankush Mandavia in the other.
Across the pond and the European Poker Tour (EPT) was waving its flag for the final time. The destination is Prague, and at the date of the writing, the Main Event will go down in history as the largest Prague has seen. 1,192 players created a first prize of €774,600, and former EPT Champ Nicolas Chouity was leading the final 231 players at the end of Day 2.
Stefan Schillhabel won the €10,000 High Roller for €248,000; Leon Tsoukernik won the €50,000 Super High Roller for €741,100, and Isaac Haxton took down the first of two €25,000 High Rollers for €559,000.
Online Poker News
PokerStars didn’t enjoy a very fruitful November in the country that looks like a very large shoe. The Red Spade’s share in the cash game market slipped from 43.2% in October to only 28.7% in November.
Things were a little different in New Jersey where they remain the kings albeit without too much pomp and circumstance. According to figures released by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) PokerStars earned $829k in November; Caesars Interactive Entertainment (CIE) earned $632,000, and The Borgata earned $622,000.
Partypoker didn’t sign an ambassador this week, but they did launch Progressive Knockout tournaments and a new derivative of cash game called Fast Five where everyone starts with five big blinds. And Prominence Poker got the green light from Valve’s Steam Early Access program and will now feature on the Daddy Steam platform that currently pulls in 125 million users.
The Best of the Rest
The Global Poker League (GPL) China will consist of eight franchises. A press release gave the team names but little else. We do know that players can qualify for a spot on the team by playing online satellites and expect to see some Chinese celebrities thrown into the mix.
The date for the third iteration of the American Poker Awards (APA) has been released. The event will take place Feb 23, 2017, at the Sofitel in Beverly Hills, California. Kara Scott will make sure everything runs smoothly. PokerStars act as primary sponsor.
Harry Reid and the alleged $2m Full Tilt bribe re-emerged in the Salt Lake City Tribune this week with the author saying the FBI were covering something up. And another politician filed another bill with the intent of destroying online poker. Pennsylvania Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick filed the bill (HR 6453) that aims to set fire to the online gambling market in the US by proving that the Wire Act had it right all along.
Time ladies & gentlemen.
Someone has just called the clock.