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Gambling in the USA

Ramon Colillas Turns Free Entry Into $5.1 Million as Winner of Record-Breaking PokerStars Players Championship

Zoltan Tundik

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Ramon Colillas Turns Free Entry Into $5.1 Million as Winner of Record-Breaking PokerStars Players Championship. Photo credit: Neil Stoddart and Rational Intellectual Holdings Ltd. (PokerStars)
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PokerStars makes six new millionaires

PokerStars (Nasdaq: TSG) (TSE: TSGI), the flagship poker brand of The Stars Group, announced today that Ramon Colillas from Barcelona, Spain, won $5.1 million and was crowned the winner of the PokerStars Players No-Limit Hold’em Championship (PSPC), the richest and biggest-ever $25,000 buy-in poker tournament.

Colillas won free entry into the tournament as part of a PokerStars global promotion that awarded 320 people a $30,000 Platinum Pass package, which in addition to free entry, covered travel and hotel accommodations at the Atlantis Resort & Casino in the Bahamas. Colillas topped a field of 1,039 players that produced a record-breaking total prize pool of $26,455,500 and attracted players from all over the globe. As part of the total pool, PokerStars added an extra $1 million to the first-place prize.

PokerStars awarded the 30-year old Spanish native a Platinum Pass after he topped the Campeonato de España de Poker leader board based upon his successful tournament play in a series of PokerStars-sponsored tournaments in Spain. The former fitness trainer converted to a professional poker player at the age of 24.

“A lot of players were saying this was the most important tournament in history, so now it’s only about happiness and enjoying the moment,” Colillas said moments after his win.

Ramon Colillas Turns Free Entry Into $5.1 Million as Winner of Record-Breaking PokerStars Players Championship. Photo credit: Neil Stoddart and Rational Intellectual Holdings Ltd.

The runner-up was 26-year-old professional poker player Julien Martini from Paris, France, winning an impressive $2,974,000. Julien was a very composed contender and had attempted to win a Platinum Pass last year in the €1,100 EPT Barcelona National Event, just missing out on the Platinum Pass, but still winning €323,000 for coming in second.

Platinum Pass winner Marc Rivera from The Philippines came in third place with $2,168,000. The 45-year-old won his ticket at the APPT Manila National Main Event with what was then his biggest live cash win. After being introduced to the game 12 years ago by his brother Ashley, who told Rivera he was “going to love it”, the engineer (at the time) has been playing ever since. When not on the felt, Rivera enjoys basketball, watching TV series and spending time at home with his family, playing with his son and daughter.

Not only has Colillas become a millionaire, but five other final table players have also joined the club. The eight-handed final table included US poker pro Scott Baumstein who started amassing live tournament cashes in 2009 and has accrued over $1.9 million in winnings over the past decade, Jason Koonce who had two reported live cashes worth a total $6,426Marc Perrault who has had a string of hefty online and live cashes dating back to 2012, Farid Jattin, a regular fixture on the live tournament circuit across the United States and who is leading the Colombian all-time money list with over $2.9 million in winnings, and Talal Shakerchi, a businessman from London who has over $6 million in winnings to date. The players all took home cash winnings between $509,000 and $2.1 million for their efforts.

The PSPC made it into the history books with a total prize pool of $26,455,500 awarded to 181 players, smashing the previous $15,495,750 prize pool record for a $25,000 event. Of the Platinum Pass holders, 43 collectively cashed in for nearly $9.8 million, including Jacqueline Burkhart from the United States with $86,400Atanas Pavlov from Bulgariawith $105,000 and Ireland’s Sven McDermott with $69,100.

PokerStars Director of Poker Marketing, Eric Hollreiser said, “We couldn’t have scripted a better outcome for the tournament and PokerStars congratulates Ramon and all of the competitors for making this an historic event. Ramon’s victory is a reminder that with a dream, some talent and a little luck, poker can change your life. We’re proud to have created a special experience for more than a thousand players, but especially for those like Ramon who had never previously dreamed of playing in such a tournament.”

The poker fun doesn’t stop despite the conclusion of the PSPC. The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) continues with events including the $10,300 buy-in PCA Main Event, $25,000 buy-in PCA High Roller, $100,00 buy-in PCA Super High Roller and $1,100 PCA National. Live updates from the Super High Roller can be read on the PokerStars Blog now and will be live-streamed on PokerStars TV on January 11 and 12.

To keep up to date with all live reports from the PCA visit the PokerStars Blog or watch the live stream daily from 12:30 ET and 13:30 ET on January 16 at PokerStars.TV.

Find out more about Colillas’ win on the PokerStars Blog.

For further information, please contact press@pokerstarslive.com

About PokerStars

PokerStars operates the world’s most popular online poker sites, serving the global poker community. Since it launched in 2001, PokerStars has become the first choice of players all over the world, with more daily tournaments than anywhere else and with the best online security. More than 182 billion hands have been dealt on PokerStars, which is more than any other site.

The Stars Group owns or licenses gaming and related consumer businesses and brands, including PokerStars, PokerStars Casino, BetStars, Full Tilt, Sky Bet, Sky VegasSky Casino, Sky Bingo, Sky Poker and BetEasy as well as live poker tour and event brands, including the PokerStars Players No Limit Hold’em Championship, European Poker Tour, PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, Latin American Poker Tour, Asia Pacific Poker Tour, PokerStars Festival and PokerStars MEGASTACK. The Stars Group is one of the world’s most licensed online gaming operators with its subsidiaries collectively holding licenses or approvals in 21 jurisdictions throughout the world, including in EuropeAustralia, and the Americas.

 

 

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Gambling in the USA

Plaza Hotel & Casino to host second annual Las Vegas Pickleball Open, Sept. 24-28

Vlad Poptamas

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

LAS VEGAS – With more pickleball courts than any Las Vegas hotel/casino, the Plaza Hotel & Casino is again the official hotel and title sponsor of the Las Vegas Pickleball Open, Sept. 24-28. The annual competition saw registration more than double in its second year and expects to welcome nearly 650 players in 2019.

Due in large part to the success of last year’s tournament, hundreds of amateur and professional pickleball players from across the United States and around the world, including Japan, Mexico and Canada, will participate in next month’s event. Players also span multiple generations, from 12 to 81 years of age. Many players from last year are also returning, including top pros Simone Jardim and Kyle Yates to defend their mixed doubles title.

The Las Vegas Pickleball Open offers professional players a competitive prize package of $25,000 split between grand prize, silver and bronze medalists. The Plaza will again construct special grandstand seating for championship matches that will be streamed live on the event website.

“Pickleball continues to grow in popularity for players young and old,” said Jonathan Jossel, CEO of the Plaza Hotel & Casino. “Since we debuted the permanent pickleball courts on the rooftop pool and recreation deck in 2016, the Plaza has built a unique reputation as a premier pickleball destination. Now, we are welcoming hundreds of players from around the globe for this unparalleled tournament that offers players everything: top-notch competition as well as delicious dining options, exciting entertainment and relaxing accommodations, all in the heart of downtown Las Vegas.”

The tournament will offer men’s, women’s, and mixed amateur doubles matches as well as men’s, women’s, mixed and senior (50-plus) professional doubles matches. Matches will be played from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, with the scheduling of the championship matches to be announced. Spectators can attend any of the matches, including the semi-finals and championships, for free.

Players can register for the tournament online at www.lasvegaspickleballopen.com. Participants can also book hotel rooms at the Plaza at a special tournament rate, starting at $40 per night on the event site or at https://www.plazahotelcasino.com/entertainment/pickleball-open/.

A cross between tennis, badminton and ping pong, pickleball is the fastest growing racquet sport in the U.S., boasting more than three million players – a number that has been growing by more than 10 percent each year over the past decade.

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Gambling in the USA

Expectations on Online Gambling in the US

Niji Narayan

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Photo source: rightcasino.com
Reading Time: 2 minutes

The U.S. casinos have already entered into the list of the burning issues of the United States. Nevada is a national gambling symbol in the US, while some of the states impose strict restrictions even on the online casinos. The recent tendencies in the American online gambling market look quite promising.

Around 90% of the American gamblers easily switched from a traditional casino to the online platforms introducing the same services. At the same time, 85% of the US gambling niche income is generated by its online segment. On average, the industry of sports betting reaches the exorbitant figures – $400 billion a year.

It is obvious that the US cannot impose a strict federal ban on online gambling. The only obstacles may exist on the state level, where the situation is quite paradoxical. Depending on the state, the national operators have to satisfy a long list of the legal requirements to get a proper license.

It seems that the endless war between the operators and the state laws is getting tense: many of the gambling icons keep pushing the respective bills about partly legalisation of online casinos.

The milestone to block the decision-making process on a state level is taxation rates for the online casino operators. Some of the fees make it clear that the government would like to benefit from the business as much as the actual providers.

Despite a few legal opportunities, the online gambling niche in the US is blossoming. This business will soon reach its peak and will demand some more room for expanding its influence and audience.

In the nearest future, we can expect some further improvements. There is nothing to hold the industry from further development. Recognising the providers’ needs will resolve lots of issues related to illegal gambling. This should be a minimum benefit the federals cannot resist.

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Gambling in the USA

DOJ Appeals the District Court Decision on Wire Act Case

Niji Narayan

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Photo source: nodepositkings.com
Reading Time: 1 minute

The Department of Justice has filed its intent to appeal a district court decision on the Wire Act to the First Circuit Court of Appeals.

In June, a federal judge in the New Hampshire District ruled that the Wire Act applies only to sports betting and not to other forms of interstate gaming.

The New Hampshire Lottery and its vendor had filed the federal case because of the DOJ’s change in stance on the interpretation of the Wire Act.

The DOJ in 2011 had stated that the Wire Act applied only to sports wagering. But it reversed the course with a memo from 2018, expanding the possible reach for federal prosecution which triggered worries about its applicability to online gambling, lotteries and other forms of gaming that potentially cross state lines.

The New Hampshire District judge had forecast that the case would likely reach the US Supreme Court. While the case is going on, the DOJ has said it would not enforce the new interpretation of the Wire Act until 2020.

“The Department’s action, while hardly unexpected, is certainly unwarranted. DOJ generally files appeals of adverse district court decisions as a matter of course. We hope that, rather than engaging in a protracted, expensive and ultimately unsuccessful legal fight, the Department will take this opportunity to negotiate a settlement which will focus the Wire Act and DOJ’s enforcement resources on the right targets – the unlicensed illegal offshore Internet gambling operators who do not create jobs or tax revenue in the U.S. and do not appropriately protect consumers,” Jeff Ifrah, founder of iDEA Growth (an online gambling lobbying group) said.

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