In this week’s poker news round-up we bring you an update on the Leon Tsoukernik v Matt Kirk row, a new relationship in poker for DraftKings, and much more.
Let’s begin this week’s poker news round-up with Leon Tsoukernik, the European Poker Award (EPA) Industry Person of the Year winner whose integrity within the poker community is turning into a charred scrap of bacon.
Tsoukernik is currently waging a legal war with the Australian High Stakes poker player, Matt Kirk, over an unpaid $2 million poker debt dating back to the summer, and this week it took a twist of apocalyptic proportions for the Czech, casino owner.
In a bid to clear his name, Tsoukernik and his legal team have counter-sued Kirk, and brought legal charges against the ARIA, to the tune of $10m, claiming the losses were due to his intoxicated and fatigued state, and accusing Kirk and the ARIA of leading him to the bar so to speak.
The new allegations finally prompted some quarters of the High Roller community to become involved with a unanimous favouring of Kirk appearing throughout social media like dead snakeskins in an Indiana Jones movie.
The move by Tsoukernik prompted Dusk till Dawn (DTD) owner, Rob Yong, to publish a blog post after numerous media sources cited him as the ‘unofficial’ arbitrator in the dispute.
You can read my thoughts here.
Here is Yong’s blog post.
partypoker Remove Inactivity Fees and Hire Louise Butler
Both Rob Yong and Leon Tsoukernik have appeared in the newly minted High Stakes cash games in partypoker’s Trickett’s Room so that’s where we will segway next.
The online poker room decided axe inactivity fees this week. As far as 2007, partypoker has punished people who fail to log-in for six months by hitting them with a monthly fee. With immediate effect, those charges cease to exist.
In other partypoker news this week, although there has been no ‘official’ word from around the campfire, it looks likely that the online poker room is preparing to launch a partypoker Ladies ambassadorial team.
A hunch presented itself after partypoker added Louise “Lou045” Butler to the payroll as a representative of Team Online, and mentioned that Butler would also be representing the partypoker Ladies team.
888Poker hire Vivian Saliba; Partners with the World Poker Tour
Butler wasn’t the only female poker player who joined an online poker room this week. 888Poker, the second largest online poker room this side of the Bone Broth sign that stands in front of me, signed Vivian Saliba.
The Brazilian star – who once worked for 888Poker as a member of their live reporting team – joined the online poker room via a Facebook Live announcement during the World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE) in King’s Casino. I’m catching the news late because I’m not very good at my job.
888Poker also hit the news this week after entering into a partnership with the World Poker Tour (WPT). The deal sees 888Poker become the official online poker room tributary of choice for WPTDeepStack events.
World Poker Tour Partner With DraftKings; Release European Championship Schedule
The first WPTDeepStacks event you can qualify for via 888Poker is the WPTDeepStacks Main Event that forms part of the forthcoming WPT European Championships held in the Spielbank Casino, Berlin, in January, and 888Poker isn’t the only partner appearing in the land of superb vegan restaurants and free walking tours.
DraftKings and the WPT have rekindled an old romance that first burst into bloom in 2013. The Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS) site will host eight online qualifiers via their NBA and NFL products issuing Main Event packages for the WPT European Championship Main Event and will have a considerable presence on the ground at the Spielbank Casino.
You can find the schedule for the WPT European Championships, right here.
Vikash Mantri won the inaugural WPTDeepStacks India Main Event beating 527 entrants to bank the $92,540 first prize. And the Frenchman Laurent Polito won his sixth WPT title in four years by taking down the WPTDeepStacks Main Event in Brussels for €90,000.
PokerStars Launch High Roller Series
PokerStars acted like the good old gunslinger it is after announcing plans to host a High Roller online series at the back end of November. The event must have surfaced in reaction to partypoker’s attempts to pinch the high rolling cash game action from the mightiest of mighty online poker rooms. It will shower the players with $11.4m in guaranteed prize money across 22 events.
Click on this little blue ray of light for more the schedule.
In other PokerStars related news, their charitable arm, Helping Hands and partner CARE International, raised $140,000 during their Hurricane Irma emergency relief efforts. The Finance Department announced that Q3 online poker revenue rose 12.5% without adding any new players ($221.4m). And a few members of Team Pro ended up in the news.
André Akkari closed down his profitable poker training site so he could focus on adding an esports training element to the brand. Liv Boeree featured in a Facebook documentary called Amazing Science Adventures, and starred in a Hewlett Packard backed video on the sterling work that the Pittsburgh Supercomputing (PSC) team have been carrying out on Artificial Intelligence (AI) called All-In on AI.
And, Daniel Negreanu and James Woods declared their dislike for each other on Twitter this week. Negreanu poured scorn on Woods after actresses Elizabeth Perkins, and Amber Tamblyn dragged the Hollywood actor’s integrity into the #MeToo sexual harassment and assault cyclone.
Negreanu called Woods a ‘scumbag’ after Tamblyn alleged Woods tried to pick her up when she was 16 and polled his 447k Twitter followers to see if they would leave their 16-year-old daughters in Woods’ care (74% of the 11.7k people who voted said NO). Woods reacted by calling Negreanu a ‘Cowardly Piece of Shit,’ and intimated that he might sue the face of PokerStars.
Oh, I nearly forgot.
PokerStars are doing everything they can to ensure they have a presence in Pennsylvania when things kick-off if you’re interested.
Bits and Bobs
The Asian Poker Tour (APT) inked a three-year deal to host festivals in Resorts World Manila, and a two-year partnership with the Korean company Geutebruck Korea Inc., that will see more APT events held in South Korea (subject to Rocket Man not blowing the country into the middle of next week).
Colombia’s Coljuegos gambling regulatory agency issued a draft decree that will see the online poker market open up its cyber doors to the rest of the world in an international shared liquidity pact of sorts. Side note: the Netflix show Narcos isn’t an accurate reflection of modern-day Colombia.
Finally, the world’s best poker player, Libratus, won an award at the SC17 supercomputing conference in Denver. And the WSOP bracelet winner Keven Stammen added a couple of Heartland Poker Tour (HPT) titles to his CV beating 494 entrants to take down the $27,005 first prize in the $300 Monster Stack event, and 399 entrants in the Main Event for $87,303, both in the Belterra Casino Resort in Florence.
Dan Lowery won a sixth World Series of Poker Circuit (WSOPC) gold ring, and $258,784, after topping a 908 entrant field in the WSOPC Choctaw Main Event. Danny Corbett won the £87,000 first prize after besting a field of 314 entrants in the Grosvenor United Kingdom Poker Tour (GUKPT) Main Event in Blackpool. And Charlie Carrel told the poker community to be ‘nice’ to Chris “Jesus” Ferguson because he has heard he is ‘innocent’ during an interview with BetCoin.
Time Ladies and Gentlemen, please.
Someone has just called the clock.