Badugi Primer – Get Ready for Tomorrow’s Brand New WSOP Tournament

Badugi Primer - Get Ready for Tomorrow's Brand New WSOP Tournament

The 2023 World Series of Poker (WSOP) is getting ready to debut a brand new event!

Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 7 at 2 p.m., Event 20: $1,500 Badugi will get underway at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, June 7, but if you don’t know how to play, fear not as we’ve put together this primer to get you up to speed and ready to compete.

Badugi is a four-card triple draw lowball poker variant that isn’t as well-known as other games, but those who learn and play it often characterize it as a fun alternative poker game filled with action.

A lot of players enjoy Badugi because it has a fairly simple objective and, because the format and goal differ from many other variants, there are different strategies employed.

Although the exact origin of the game is unknown, many believe it originated in South Korea in the latter half of the 20th century, while others claim it was popularized in Canada in the 1980s where it was called “Off Suit Lowball”.

The name allegedly comes from the Korean word baduk or badug which refers to a black and white pattern, with badugi a common name for a black and white spotted dog. The board game Go was called baduk in Korean.

2023 World Series of Poker Hub

Bookmark this page! All you need to know about the 2023 WSOP is here.

How to Play Badugi

The goal of Badugi is to make the lowest “badugi” – a four-card hand of different ranks and suits. Aces are low and the best possible hand in the game is A-2-3-4 rainbow.

It’s usually played as a fixed-limit game and, like other triple draw lowball games, it has four total betting rounds and three draws.

Four cards are dealt face down to each player before the pre-draw betting round commences. After the initial betting round, each player can choose to discard between zero and four cards.

This is followed by a second betting round before another draw occurs, and then a third betting round before the third and final draw. After the final draw, there is a fourth and final betting round before players turn their hands over.

At showdown, the lowest four-card badugi wins the pot. If no player has a four-card qualifying hand, the pot goes to the player with the lowest three-card hand, and so on. The highest card in the hand determines the strength of the hand so, for example, a 7-6-4-2 badugi would beat a 9-3-2-A badugi.

The best Badugi hand.

Badugi Strategy

Like other poker games, there is a button, a small blind, and a big blind, and position is a key part of the strategy. It allows you much more information as you get to see how much your opponents are drawing and betting. It can also allow you to decide whether to bluff by drawing zero cards and standing “pat”, or if you want to put in an extra raise.

Getting dealt three cards of different suits under five is a very strong starting point and can be played from any position. Strong two-card badugi hands can often be played from late positions. Of course, the number of players in a hand will also change the number of starting hands that can be played.

Although the rules are simple, it can be more difficult to make a badugi than what one might initially think. If a player has a three-card badugi in the first round, the probability of making a four-card badugi by the final draw is 51%.

You can learn more about the different strategies in this exciting lesser-known variant by checking out the Badugi strategy article as part of a series on Mixed Games strategies.

First-Ever WSOP Badugi Event

2023 WSOP Gold Bracelet
A WSOP Badugi bracelet will be awarded this week!

The 2023 World Series of Poker will feature the first-ever WSOP Badugi event – Event #20: $1,500 Badugi. The three-day event will begin on June 7 with one re-entry allowed and late registration open for the first nine levels.

The first time Badugi was played in a WSOP event was in 2011 when it was part of the 10-game mix. Chris Lee took down that tournament for $254,955 and his first bracelet. Since then, it’s also been featured in Dealer’s Choice events and Triple Draw Mix, but this will be the first running of a standalone tournament.

Phil Hellmuth was eliminated on a Badugi hand in the 2021 WSOP Event #36: $10,000 Dealer’s Choice Championship when Adam Friedman denied him a record-breaking 17th bracelet. Both players stood pat on all three draws and Friedman tabled a 9-6-5-2 of different suits for a “nine-dugi” to claim the bracelet in that event for a third consecutive year.

There are also other variants of Badugi such as Badeucy and Badacey, which are five-card split pot games in rotation at Dealer’s Choice events. The Poker Brat had an encounter with one of these variants recently when he accidentally slow-rolled eventual winner Chad Eveslage in Event #5: $1,500 Dealer’s Choice 6-Handed.

Now, Badugi is sure to be the final hand of a WSOP tournament once again and someone, perhaps even Hellmuth, will soon claim the first-ever WSOP Badugi bracelet.

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IxiltxZtKQn Leads the $500K Gtd 888poker XL Spring Series Main Event

IxiltxZtKQn Leads the $500K Gtd 888poker XL Spring Series Main Event

The 888poker XL Spring Series Main Event has reached its final table, and only nine players remain in contention to claim the lion’s share of the $500,000 prize pool. Leading the finalists back into battle is “IxiltxZtKQn” with 4,331,409 chips; “IxiltxZtKQn” is one of four Brazilians at the final table.

Day 2 saw 376 players return to the action, each hoping to capture the largest mystery bounty on offer, one weighing in at $50,000. Two players opened mystery bounty envelopes containing $15,000. “HaxiLife” crashed out in 238th and missed out on an in-the-money finish but won a $15,000 bounty. “MARIMBONDO1” also clinched a $15,000 bounty before falling in 12th place.

Twenty-second place finisher “Lokiape” of the United Kingdom collected $1,175 from the main prize pool but reeled in $51,079 from the bounty prize pool! Although they were obviously disappointed not to win this event, taking home more than $52,000 for their $250 investment will go some way to numbing the pain.

$500,000 Gtd XL Spring Series Main Event Final Table Chip Counts

Rank Player Country Bounties Chip Count Big Blinds
1 IxiltxZtKQn Brazil $869 4,331,409 62
2 luttekikker Malta $2,658 3,410,413 49
3 betsoares Brazil $8,528 2,256,110 32
4 Rochinh2011 Brazil $3,158 1,709,180 24
5 Hiisoka93 Brazil $1,158 1,543,594 22
6 xxBanioNxx Ireland $1,948 1,512,311 22
7 ckb4714 United Kingdom $2,289 1,296,043 19
8 buicanalex Romania $2,658 1,220,939 17
9 r4ndomr4gs Sweden $1,869 930,001 13

None of the nine players at the final table will take home less than $3,450 from the main prize pool, and as much as $36,525 for their efforts. As mentioned, Brazil’s “IxiltxZtKQn” is the player to catch, their 4,331,409 stack is the equivalent of 62 big blinds.

Malta’s “luttekikker” returns in second place with 3,410,413 chips (49 big blinds), with another Brazilian “betsoares” occupying third spot courtesy of their 2,256,110 stack (32 big blinds). “betsoares” is already quids in thanks to helping themselves to more than $8,500 worth of mystery bounty payments!

Win up to $10K Free With 888poker’s Card Strike Feature

The action has the potential to be fast and furious from the moment the first cards are pitched because the chasing pack outside the top three are tightly packed; there is only an 11 big blind difference between ninth and fourth place.

Brazilian dup “Rochinh2011” and “Hiisoka93” sit down with 1,709,180 (24 big blinds) and 1,543,594 (22 big blinds), respectively, while “xxBanioNxx” of Ireland has an arsenal of 1,512,311 chips (22 big blinds).

888poker regular “ckb4714” is armed with 1,296,043 chips (19 big blinds), Romania’s “buicanalex” has a stack of 1,220,939 chips (17 big blinds), while Sweden’s “r4ndomr4gs” occupies last place with 930,001 chips (13 big blinds).

The final table action gets underway from 7:00 p.m. BST and you can follow all of the action in text format right here at PokerNews. It is also possible to watch cards-up coverage on a 30-minute delay by tuning into the 888poker Twitch stream. Whatever way you get your updates, be sure to return to PokerNews on June 7 for a full recap of the final table.

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Find Your Perfect 888poker Tournament

Have you used the free PokerNews Online Tournament Calendar yet? You should give it a whirl if not because you can set numerous filters to narrow down and hone into your perfect poker tournament.

888poker tournaments are present and correct in the PokerNews Online Tournament Calendar, so fire it up, set your filters, and become a poker champion today!

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“yifors” Triumphs in the Inaugural WPT Global Spring Festival Main Event

"yifors" Triumphs in the Inaugural WPT Global Spring Festival Main Event

The inaugural WPT Global Spring Festival Main Event has crowned its worthy champion, and it is “yifors” who wrote their name into the history books by outlasting 204 opponents, and banking $23,476 of the $104,550 prize pool.

It took only 45 minutes of play on Day 2 for the money bubble to burst, with the unlucky 33rd-place finisher being the last player to go home empty-handed. There was a flurry of eliminations from the moment the bubble popped, each busted player taking home at least $721 for their efforts.

By the time “pollozayas” busted in ninth-place to set the final table, nobody would win less than $2,633.

WPT Global Spring Festival Main Event Final Table Results

Rank Player Prize
1 yifors $23,476
2 而奋斗擦嗄 $15,444
3 Banjaxed $11,198
4 sersuperior $8,224
5 craimeariver $6,448
6 谁来neng死我 $4,880
7 陶雲 $3,584
8 TForce15 $2,633

“TForce15” was the final table’s first casualty. First, they lost with suited ace-queen against suited jack-ten to be left with only a handful of big blinds. The short stack of “TForce15” went into the middle holding queen-nine of hearts only for it to lose to the eight-six of hearts of “yifors,” who turned a full house.

“陶雲” bowed out in seventh after a clash with “Banjaxed” did not go to plan. Down to ten big blinds, 陶雲 moved all in with pocket fours only to run into the pair of queen of Banjaxed. The latter improved to an unnecessary full house on the river to rub salt into the busted player’s wounds.

Ian Shaw Secures Inaugural WPT500 Mexico City Main Event Title

Sixth place and $4,880 went to “谁来neng死我” who can count themselves unlucky. “sersuperior” open-shoved from the cutoff for 25 big blinds with what turned out to be jack-nine of hearts, “谁来neng死我” called all-in with a pair of black tens in the hole, only for a jack to land on the river.

The final five became four with the untimely demise of “craimeariver.” They looked down at pocket sevens, and decided to open-shove for 13 big blinds from under the gun. Everyone folded to “yifors” in the small blind, and they snap-called with pocket aces! The five community cards provided no drams, and “craimeariver” was gone.

“sersuperior” bagged the final four-figure prize after coming unstuck in a hand against “yifors.” “Banjaxed” min-raised to 70,000 on the button, “yifors” moved all-in from the small blind for 1,811,687, “sersuperior” called all-in for 865,061 from the big blind, and “Banjaxed” folded. It was ace-queen of hearts for “yifors” and the dominated ace-jack for “sersuperior.” In the end, the queen-kicker of “yifors” played, and the tournament was down to only three players.

PokerNews Freerolls Every Weekend on WPT Global Freerolls

Heads-up was set when “Banjaxed” lost in a battle of the blinds against “而奋斗擦嗄.” “Banjaxed” held queen-ten of diamonds against ace-eight, and bust in third despite flopped a diamond flush draw.

“yifors” went into the one-on-one battle with a substantial chip lead, and they never looked back. The final hand saw “yifors” check on the turn before quickly calling the check-raise all-in from their opponent. “yifors” had turned a full house with their pocket kings, while their opponent had improved to a queen-high diamond flush at the same time. The river was inconsequential because “yifors” had become a WPT Global champion.

Join WPT Global Today

The launch of WPT Global means that poker players around the world now have the chance to win their way to WPT events, win prizes and enjoy exciting games such as Poker Flips. As one of the world’s largest cash game poker networks, WPT Global is available in over 50 countries and territories worldwide.

WPT Global offers a large deposit match bonus: 100% on deposits up to $1,200 (using any payment method). New players depositing a minimum of $20 automatically receive this match bonus which is unlocked in $5 increments (credited straight to the cashier) for every $20 of rake contribution.

Both tournaments and cash games count towards bonus unlocking; new players have 90 days from the date of first deposit to unlock and claim their full bonus amount.

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Golf Betting Unified Under Brand New LIV, PGA Tour Merger

Hand placing golf ball on tee

Golf betting has been consolidated following the Tuesday announcement that the PGA Tour and LIV Golf agreed to a merger.

​​unify the game of golf, on a global basis”

The Saudi-backed LIV tour launched in 2022 as an alternative to the traditional main circuit for professional golfers and offered eye-watering contracts for exclusivity. All of that chaos and controversy came to be for nothing as the two agreed to join to “​​unify the game of golf, on a global basis,” per a PGA Tour statement.

Players that signed deals with each tour will be allowed to apply for reinstatement into the other with no punishment. The Saudi Public Investment Fund will also contribute a “capital investment” to the new formation.

The biggest winners from the announcement are golf fans and bettors. The split meant that many of the world’s best and most popular golfers weren’t at certain events because of contractual stipulations. Certain athletes also never crossed paths with others, again, because of the deals in place.

According to information published in 2022, betting on the PGA Tour was seven times higher than the LIV Tour. 

Scott Warfield, the PGA Tour’s VP of Gaming, said last year the future for gambling on golf was bright. 

“A 2025 goal? I would like to believe we can be one of the top four or five bet-on sports if we do it right.”

Sportsbooks also reported $4-5bn in golf wagers in 2021 alone, roughly 8.5% of the year’s sports betting revenue total. That figures to be on the rise now that the best golfers are back under the same umbrella.

The post Golf Betting Unified Under Brand New LIV, PGA Tour Merger appeared first on VegasSlotsOnline News.

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Hospitals Are No Fun – Gambling With An Edge

Putting Bills Into a Machine

I missed my blog for May 30. Sometimes I have a number of blogs “in the bank,” but not at the moment. My cupboard was bare and I was too incapacitated to refill it. I thought I’d share with you what happened. It has nothing to do with gambling (although there was one AP move during triage), but perhaps you’ll find it interesting anyway. At a minimum, most of you have probably gone through your own version of hospitalization, and/or been close to others who have done so, and this blog might inspire all sorts of comments. 

I spent three painful days in a hospital for an obstructed bowel recently. I haven’t been hospitalized since my appendectomy 50 years ago, and things are different. 

On the day before I went to the ER, I went to an Urgent Care facility and they prescribed basically a “colonoscopy prep” which means drinking a gallon of liquid with various sorts of powdered laxatives. That’s supposed to Roto-Rooter my problem down the drain. I drank it all. Nothing came out. So, I was back in Urgent Care the next day.

I guess I thought Urgent Care was the same as an Emergency Room. They’re not. The Urgent Care room in which I started the day said I needed a CT scan to diagnose my problem. Yes, they could do that, but if the result came out a certain way, I would need to be hospitalized. This particular Urgent Care facility wasn’t attached to a hospital. And the fact that the colonoscopy prep didn’t work at all meant that my symptoms were serious enough that it was suggested I go to an ER. 

I did. I picked Henderson Hospital because it was relatively new and probably didn’t have the long lines some of the other places had. I don’t know how many people were at any other ER room, but this one had 40 or so people in the ER waiting room when I arrived. Surely at least some of them were there to support others and wouldn’t need treatment themselves.

While I was in considerable pain, ERs operate on a triage system, where the patients with the most urgent needs are seen and treated first. For some reason, these ER doctors put constipation complaints much lower on their list than gun shot wounds and ruptured appendices. Go figure. 

I moaned and groaned a lot, especially when I was meeting with the triage nurse. Partly because I was in real pain. Partly because I hoped that would place me nearer the top of the list to be treated. This was my AP move and I don’t know if that helped or not. But I don’t think it hurt. I ended up waiting three hours for a CT scan, and another hour for it to be interpreted, but it definitely showed a blockage and I needed to be hospitalized to be treated. After asking a lot of questions, they gave me some intravenous morphine to ease the pain.

I’m not a recreational drug user and I don’t think I’ve ever had an opioid before. I didn’t know at the time, but 2 mg of morphine isn’t very much. It helps the pain for a couple of hours. But it also makes you more constipated — which is sort of a Catch 22 because constipation was the original problem! Still, keeping the patient relatively comfortable seemed to be the game plan. At the time it seemed like the right game plan to me.

About six hours after I first arrived, I was moved to a hospital bed within the ER department. While I had been officially admitted to the hospital, there were no beds at the current time and the only beds were in the ER area. So that’s where I was originally placed. 

Perhaps six or so different doctors came in, asked about my condition, prodded my belly, and gave their recommendations. I never knew which doctor was which. Once a doctor told me she thought I should get such and such a treatment, but what she told me didn’t get written on my chart. So as far as the nurses were concerned, the doctor never told me whatever it was. And I hadn’t written down the names and specialties of each doctor, and didn’t always know who had said what, so sometimes things fell through the crack.

Twenty-four hours after I was placed in a bed at ER, I was moved into the regular hospital. I was in a single room with its own TV and bathroom so I didn’t have any roommate issues. Perhaps I won’t be as happy with this when the bill comes. Right now, I don’t know how much my insurance is going to pay and how much will be my responsibility. Presumably the insurance pays for double occupancy hospital rooms and there will be a surcharge for the single room. We’ll see. At the time though, I was happy to have the single room. While I’m blessed to be able to pay whatever is required, I’m still a cheapskate and I won’t like it.

In the area I was in at Henderson Hospital, many of the nurses and other personnel  worked 12-hour days. I don’t know how many days a week they do this, if this was always the norm there, or if this was a post-Covid staffing shortage that has affected many businesses. But for the 40 or so hours I was there, this was convenient because I got to know them and they got to know me and my situation. There was even one nurse aide who would come into my room, sit quietly, and read her cell phone. If I needed something and asked her, she would comply, but basically, she was just killing time. This was her way of goofing off, I suppose, and I wasn’t going to bust her.

To fix a blockage problem, the options fall into three categories: things taken orally, going in from the bottom, or, as a last resort, cutting me open and performing some surgery. My bottom side was on fire with pain, and they would have to tie me down or totally sedate me if they were going to try to solve the problem from that end. 

Forty-eight hours after I had originally arrived, they gave me another colonoscopy prep. This one stronger than the one I had taken before. I wasn’t optimistic this was going to work because it didn’t work a few days earlier, but eight very painful hours later, my innards were clean. Soon it was time for me to go home.

Going home didn’t mean I could resume life as before. The colonoscopy prep still had an effect, and, shall we say, there were a few messes to clean up. Bonnie was an RN for 40 years, and was a good sport about all of this. That was one of the reasons I popped the question almost 10 years ago. If I ever needed care, she was competent at it. Although I’ve helped her more medically in the last 10 years than she’s helped me, this time I was the one in need and she was front and center on the job. One of her recommendations was that I wear a diaper until my system got back to normal. This helped neither my pride nor my masculinity, but I complied. Getting old is not for sissies!

It takes a few days to get your system back on a regular schedule after something like this. After that much purging of the system, things don’t just automatically readjust. 

I take a lot of care with my diet and am positive that this sort of malady is very unlikely when you eat the way I do, but my bowel became obstructed nonetheless. This makes me less confident that I know what I’m doing diet-wise. But depending on what my doctor tells me, I’m going to continue what I’m doing until I learn otherwise.

As I write this, I’m still in that readjustment process. It’s a guess for me exactly what food, medicines, and exercises will work the best and what should be avoided. I have a follow-up visit with my primary physician scheduled, but that’s about 10 days after my release from the hospital. I’m hoping I can make it that far without further medical treatment.


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Anton Heinrich Cruises to Victory in the 2023 The Hendon Mob Championship Liechtenstein Main Event

Anton Heinrich Cruises to Victory in the 2023 The Hendon Mob Championship Liechtenstein Main Event

Swiss poker player Anton Heinrich was crowned the champion of the 2023 The Hendon Mob Championship Liechtenstein Main Event. He turned his CHF 300 buy-in into CHF 36,000, over 100 times what he had put up.

Heinrich had a massive chip lead throughout the vast majority of the day, and he used it well in order to be the final victor. He bested Liechtenstein’s very own Karim Frick during heads up play. Frick had big aspirations to keep the trophy in the European microstate but ultimately failed to do so.

The two players played for a while heads up before they decided to both take CHF 30,000, leaving CHF 6,000 to play for, as well as the trophy. Before that, six other players had been eliminated from the Swiss-dominated final table.

The only outsiders who attempted to conquer the trophy from the normally ever-neutral country fell short, as Turkey’s “Alladin” would be the first one eliminated in eighth place (CHF 4,430), while David Wintersberger from Germany would fall not much later in sixth (CHF 7,600).

THMC Liechtenstein Final Table Results

Rank Player Country Prize (CHF) Prize (USD)
1 Anton Heinrich Switzerland 36,000* $39,600*
2 Karim Frick Liechtenstein 30,000* $33,000*
3 “Kaspar Schmid” Switzerland 17,800 $19,580
4 Daniel Schwitter Switzerland 12,800 $14,080
5 Manfred Mueller Switzerland 10,000 $11,000
6 David Wintersberger Germany 7,600 $8,360
7 “Kairi”   5,800 $6,380
8 “Alladin” Turkey 4,430 $4,873

* denotes a heads-up chop.

THMC Liechtenstein Final Table
THMC Liechtenstein Final Table

Day 3 Action

The day started with a total of 14 players returning to Grand Casino Liechtenstein from the entire field of 601. Everyone had high hopes to seize the biggest portion of the CHF 200,000 prize pool, but after about half an hour of play Remini Camel was the first to bow out when his ace-nine could not improve against Manfred Mueller’s pocket queens. Alessandro Morales would soon join him at the rail after a clash with Heinrich, and not much later, the field saw only ten players still remaining when “83-83” and “DG” were both knocked out in the same hand.

The very short-stacked “Braveheart” would then be the next victim before Greek grinder Symeon Alexandridis finally fell in ninth place as the final table bubble, when his inferior ace could not hit against the ace-ten of Wintersberger.

Symeon Alexandridis
Symeon Alexandridis

“Alladin” could only enjoy the spotlights of the streamed final table for a few minutes. He led the river all-in as a bluff but would falter when Heinrich comfortably called with trips. Heinrich would consequently also claim the next knock-out, busting “Kairi” in seventh place in a preflop flip. It would take nearly 90 minutes before Wintersberger followed in “Kairi”s footsteps when he jammed his ace-six for less than ten big blinds and could not defeat the ace-jack of “Kaspar Schmid”.

Mueller would not much later fall in fifth, being pipped with ace-nine against ace-ten preflop. The four remaining players then discussed a deal for a while, but that ultimately fell through, and play went on. Two hours later, it was Daniel Schwitter who would regret that the most. Schwitter had gathered the chip lead all the way back on Day 1a, but with a lost preflop flip against Heinrich, he could not translate it all the way into a victory. Heinrich then went on to add another stack to his tally, when he busted “Kaspar Schmid” with queens against king-jack, preventing a Swiss heads up as the quiet Frick from Liechtenstein had profited from all the bust-outs and made it to the final two.

Karim Frick
Karim Frick

Frick started off hot in the duel, doubling up the very first hand via a preflop all-in and even taking the chip lead from Heinrich for the first time all evening. However, that only lasted for one hand, as Heinrich found aces the next hand and won the preflop all-in against Frick’s pocket fives.

The pair then decided that they had had enough of the variance that comes with heads up poker, and decided to chop the prize pool evenly. With a small amount of cash and the trophy left to play for, the 30 million chips in play would not much later get all in the middle for the final time. Heinrich had pocket sixes versus the ace-jack of Frick in the final preflop clash, and the latter would see no help arrive on the board. Thus, Heinrich secured his by far largest ever live cash of CHF 36,000 and, maybe more importantly, the grandiose THMC trophy.

THMC Main Event Trophy
THMC Main Event Trophy

That concludes the PokerNews coverage of the 2023 The Hendon Mob Championship Liechtenstein. A successful week of poker has been had in the Alps, and the THMC organization is hopeful to see the same happen at their next stops at Thunder Valley (20-23 July) and Malta (24-30 October).

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2023 BetMGM Poker Championship Headlining ARIA Poker Classic With $2M GTD

2023 BetMGM Poker Championship Headlining ARIA Poker Classic With $2M GTD

BetMGM, a leading sports betting and iGaming operator, will be headlining the 2023 ARIA Poker Classic for the second consecutive year with the BetMGM Poker Championship, which PokerNews will live report.

The $3,500 buy-in tournament features two starting flights and will take place June 9-13 at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. The final table will be played on Tuesday, June 13th and will be live-streamed from PokerGO Studio.

“It’s great to bring BetMGM players back to Las Vegas during one of poker’s most exciting times of the year”, said Director of BetMGM Poker Luke Staudenmaier. “For a second straight year, ARIA is delivering a Championship event and we are happy to continue to build on our relationship with MGM Resorts, while connecting BetMGM online players to the best poker rooms in the United States.”

BetMGM Director of Poker Luke Staudenmaier Talks Borgata Almighty Million, Online Plans & More

$2 Million Guarantee Doubled from Last Year

2022 was the first time the BetMGM Poker Championship ran and a $1 million guaranteed prize pool was offered in the inaugural event.

This year, the guaranteed prize pool has doubled, and at least 100 qualifiers will be making their way to ARIA to battle it out on the felt for a piece of the $2 million guarantee after winning their way in from BetMGM Poker markets including New Jersey, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Ontario, Canada.

“Partnering with BetMGM for another summer championship is a tremendous opportunity for us to offer poker players a one-of-a-kind experience”, said MGM Resorts Director of Poker Strategy Sean McCormack. “ARIA has doubled the guarantee from last year to $2 million, giving the competitors the chance to win one of our industry’s top prize pools.”

BetMGM Poker

Win Your Way In

There will be live satellite opportunities the two days prior to the start of the tournament including two $400 satellites with ten seats GTD on June 7th, and a $400 turbo satellite with five seats GTD on June 8th.

BetMGM ambassador Darren Elias took to Twitter recently to choose a lucky winner who would receive a $6,500 package to the upcoming festivities, which includes a $3,500 entry to the BetMGM Championship and an entry to the $800 NLH Mystery Bounty tournament on June 8th, as well as hotel and travel expenses.

Other notable events on the 2023 ARIA Poker Classic series include several Mystery Bounty events, a couple of Senior events, a Ladies event, and multiple mixed games events.

Previous Winner

Joey Weissman
Joey Weissman wins!

In the inaugural BetMGM Poker Championship, 343 entrants generated a prize pool of $1,097,600. Joey Weissman claimed the trophy and the $224,236 first-place prize after he defeated Paul Hoefer in heads-up play.

Others who made a deep run in that event include Michael Wang (4th – $65,856), BetMGM Poker qualifier Benji Felson (5th – $51,587), Jake Daniels (17th – $14,269), Michael Gathy (22nd – $10,208), and Ankush Mandavia (25th – $8,781).

In that tournament, 68 players qualified for the event by playing online at BetMGM Poker in either Michigan, New Jersey, or Pennsylvania.

2022 BetMGM Poker Championship Final Table Results

1 Joey Weissman United States $224,236
2 Paul Hoefer Germany $159,152
3 Noel Rodriguez United States $104,272
4 Michael Wang United States $65,856
5 Benji Felson United States $51,587
6 Joe Kuether United States $41,709
7 Zachary Donovan United States $34,026
8 Todd Ivens United States $28,538
9 Albert Nguyen Canada $24,147

Check out the ARIA Poker Room review here on PokerNews!

2023 ARIA Poker Classic Full Schedule

A full schedule of the upcoming 2023 ARIA Poker Classic is available in the table below.

Date Start Event
31-May 11:00 AM $800 PLO Mystery Bounty $150K GTD
1-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
2-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH Seniors (50+) $100K GTD
3-Jun 11:00 AM $600 Limit H.O.R.S.E. $50K GTD
4-Jun 11:00 AM $800 NLH Mystery Bounty $150K GTD
5-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
6-Jun 11:00 AM $600 PLO $75K GTD
7-Jun 11:00 AM $400 BetMGM Milestone Satellite 10 Seats GTD
7-Jun 5:00 PM $400 BetMGM Milestone Satellite 10 Seats GTD
8-Jun 11:00 AM $800 NLH Mystery Bounty $250K GTD
8-Jun 5:00 PM $400 BetMGM Turbo Satellite 5 Seats GTD
9-Jun 12:00 PM $3,500 BetMGM NLH Day 1A $2M GTD
10-Jun 12:00 PM $3,500 BetMGM NLH Day 1B $2M GTD
11-Jun 12:00 PM $3,500 BetMGM NLH Day 2 $2M GTD
12-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
12-Jun 1:00 PM $3,500 BetMGM NLH Day 3 $2M GTD
13-Jun 11:00 AM $800 Eight Game Mix $50K GTD
13-Jun 3:00 PM $3,500 BetMGM NLH FT $2M GTD
14-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
15-Jun 11:00 AM $600 Big O $50K GTD
16-Jun 11:00 AM $800 NLH Seniors (50+) $150K GTD
17-Jun 11:00 AM $600 TD Mix (2-7, Badeucey, Badugi) $30K GTD
18-Jun 11:00 AM $600 PLO 8/B $50K GTD
19-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
20-Jun 11:00 AM $600 PLO $75K GTD
21-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
22-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
23-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
24-Jun 11:00 AM $600 PLO $75K GTD
25-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
26-Jun 11:00 AM $800 PLO Mystery Bounty $150K GTD
27-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
28-Jun 11:00 AM $800 NLH Mystery Bounty $150K GTD
29-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
30-Jun 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
1-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
2-Jul 11:00 AM $600 Limit Omaha 8/B $50K GTD
2-Jul 5:00 PM $240 PLO Milestone Satellite 5 Seats GTD
3-Jul 12:00 PM $1,600 PLO (2 Day Event) $200K GTD
4-Jul 11:00 AM $500 NLH Ladies $50K GTD
4-Jul 1:00 PM $1,600 PLO Restart $200K GTD
5-Jul 12:00 PM $1,600 Limit H.O.R.S.E. (2 Day Event) $125K GTD
6-Jul 12:00 PM $1,600 Limit H.O.R.S.E. Restart $125K GTD
7-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
8-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
9-Jul 11:00 AM $600 PLO $75K GTD
10-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
11-Jul 11:00 AM $600 Limit Omaha 8 / Stud 8 $50K GTD
12-Jul 11:00 AM $800 NLH Mystery Bounty $150K GTD
13-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
14-Jul 11:00 AM $600 NLH $75K GTD
15-Jul 11:00 AM $600 PLO Mix $50K GTD
Name Surname
Chad Holloway

Executive Editor U.S.

Executive Editor US, PokerNews Podcast co-host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.

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ComeOn Group Announces Launch of Live Dealer Lounge in Scandinavia

ComeOn Group Announces Launch of Live Dealer Lounge in Scandinavia

ComeOn Group has announced the launch of a brand new live dealer casino suite in Scandinavia under the “brand-within-a-brand” name, Nordic Ruby Lounge. The premier bespoke gaming studio joins the rest of the Ruby Lounge portfolio launched within the brand with Evolution Live Gaming in March 2022.

The live studio offers players in the Nordic region a local touch and native entertainment and will be available across the company’s core markets. One differentiation is the hosting of local games by native live dealers giving the suite a personalized and customized touch.

Bespoke Environment for Nordic Players

Cristiano Blanco, Chief Product Officer at ComeOn Group, said: “We are extremely happy to see Nordic Ruby Lounge take things to the next level with our live casino offer. Our Nordic players can now enjoy a bespoke environment locally tailored around their preferences, with native dealers for that extra cherry on top. It’s been about great teamwork throughout all involved departments, which has landed us in a great quality product with a truly impressive design and functionality. For us, the launch of Nordic Ruby Lounge is a great milestone and with that said we are looking forward to seeing Nordic Ruby Lounge succeed and take things up a notch.”

Nordic Ruby Lounge joins the Group’s Ruby Lounge portfolio, which was launched in early 2022. ComeOn and Evolution have enjoyed a successful partnership since 2013 and Ruby Lounge gave ComeOn a great opportunity to make a strong brand identity statement with the bespoke games. Making it wholly Nordic and enhancing the native offering gives it a chance to re-introduce the brand within a brand with the personalized touches it needs to be the top-tier studio in the region.

The dedicated ComeOn team serves up roulette and blackjack from several tables across the Group’s Nordic brands creating a one-of-a-kind live studio product that sets a high standard for competitors to reach for and marks a milestone in ComeOn’s track for growth.

When the broader Ruby Lounge portfolio was launched by the partners across multiple online markets, rather than restricted to the Nordics as today’s debut is, it was comprised of one Roulette table and eight blackjack tables.

The games operated 24/7 from Evolution studios and were served as well by dedicated ComeOn dealers.

Live Suite Appears in Several Nordic Casinos

ComeOn Group’s extensive brand portfolio includes ComeOn, Snabbare, Hajper and Casinostugan and several more, with the Group operating in multiple markets including Sweden and Denmark.

Commenting in March on the initial launch of Ruby Lounge, Cristiano Blanco, Chief Product Officer at ComeOn Group, said: “The Ruby Lounge extends choice and entertainment, offering an exclusive, premium, vibrant and exciting live gaming experience. Once again, Evolution has proved what great partners they are. The Ruby Lounge has such a strong identity yet works with all our brands.

At that time Erland Hellstrom, Commercial Manager at Evolution, commented: “We have been working closely with ComeOn Group for many years and we’re delighted that their dedicated live casino environment is now live. The end result is magnificent and early statistics suggest that ComeOn Group players absolutely love the whole look and feel of this premium environment with its world-class live casino games.

Beyond the Nordics, ComeOn added a bespoke Group branded live dealer game studio powered by Stake Logic Live games to its Dutch-facing brand in late 2022.

Source: ComeOn Group launches new bespoke live casino studio under the name Nordic Ruby Lounge, EU Gaming News, June 1, 2023

The post ComeOn Group Announces Launch of Live Dealer Lounge in Scandinavia appeared first on Casino News Daily.

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Star Entertainment Delays ”Queen’s Dwarf” Opening

Star Entertainment Delays ''Queen's Dwarf'' Opening

Following a series of accusations for the Queensland casino laws violations, and the financial issues resulting in extensive lay-offs, the Australian gaming corporation Star Entertainment is facing another problem. As InQueensland reports, the casino giant’s vulnerability has recently been proven by another delay of its Queen’s Wharf project in Brisbane.

 April 2024 Launch:

The company reportedly unveiled that its ambitious $3 billion development project, set to open in late 2022, will not be launched before April 2024. As InQueensland reports, the latest delay is the additional extension of the timeline anticipating the opening in December this year. Even the push-back to December would reportedly imply a staged opening as the supply chains established before the Covid-19 pandemic has now been disrupted to request additional planning and time schedule adjustments.

Blaming Contractor:

According to the source, the construction works for the Queen’s Wharf project have been assigned to Multiplex as the leading contractor and the latest postponement of the project completion is reportedly the contractor’s responsibility. Star reportedly said the project leaders gathered around the Queens Wharf consortium, known as Destination Brisbane, decided to push the opening timeline forward after they had reviewed the progress of the construction works.

Star chief executive Robbie Cooke reportedly complained that the project sustains the same type of pressure as other major construction projects.  “We are disappointed, but this transformational development for Brisbane has been eight years in the making already and it will be worth the wait,” he reportedly said.

List of Problems:

It seems that it would be better the project is worth waiting for as the company doesn’t seem to have much time to wait to get back on track. Indeed, the shares of Star Entertainment reportedly sense the pressure from the delayed project as the $800 million fundraising project has been slowed down for weeks.

According to the source, Star’s shares fell 2 per cent on June 6, 2023 to add some more weight to the company’s half-year loss of $1.3 billion. But that’s not all, as the operator is still facing fines from the gaming regulator, after it had paid the two $100 million fines to two Australian provinces’ governments for money laundering non-compliance.

Ray of Light:

The Star’s statement that some parts of the Queen’s Wharf project, i.e., several dining, entertainment, and gaming areas have been completed and the keys received by the company sheds some light on the gloomy company’s prospects.

Star reportedly said: “The third and final sky deck bridge section was moved into place on Friday June 2, allowing the sky deck lift and connection to take place in coming weeks. The completed sky deck will connect all four towers of the Queen’s Wharf development and signify a further milestone in the project’s progression.”

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Tyler Brown Crowned Champion of Event #3: $1,000 Mystery Millions ($1,000,000)

Tyler Brown Crowned Champion of Event #3: $1,000 Mystery Millions ($1,000,000)

Event #3: $1,000 Mystery Millions of the 2023 World Series of Poker at the Horseshoe and Paris Las Vegas is now in the history books. After 48 levels of grueling play, battling through the monstrous field of 18,188 players and a final eight-handed feature table in the spotlight, Tyler Brown is the champion taking home a cool $1,000,000 and a coveted WSOP bracelet.

Those lucky enough to make it through one of the four day-one flights were eligible to win the mystery bounties that were put into play on Day 2. For every knockout earned, a player had the opportunity to draw for one of the many bounties on offer ranging in value from $1,000 to $1,000,000. With an overwhelming amount of entries this year generating a massive bounty prize pool, the WSOP was able to offer not one but two $1,000,000 bounties to play for.

Shant Marashlian
Shant Marashlian became a millionaire

Shant Marashlian was the first player to become a millionaire after pulling the first grand prize bounty early on Day 2 of the event.

Patrick Liang shortly followed as he secured a combined total of $1,025,000 across two bounty pulls from the chest. Rather generously, Liang also decided to gift $1,000 to every player at his table when he won the million.

Other notable bounty recipients included Klint Tevaearai and Eric Baldwin who were the winners of the $500,000 and $250,000 bounties respectively.

Many notable players in the field who busted included Matt Glantz (49th), who was the recipient of the $1,000,000 bounty in 2022 and former WSOP Main Event champion Martin Jacobson (532nd) who both made it through to Day 2. Chris Hunichen (14th) also had a deep run busting well into Day 3 of the event as well as Dan Shak (seventh) who reached the final table.

Mystery Bounty Payouts

Bounty Prize Collected By Bounty Prize Collected By
$1,000,000 Shant Marashlian $1,000,000 Patrick Liang
$500,000 Klint Teveraei $250,000 Eric Baldwin
$100,000 Noah Hovick $100,000 Kenneth Mapoy
$100,000 Dan Shak $50,000 Nikolaos Angelou
$50,000 Cassio Pisapia $50,000 Kevin Towler
$50,000 Bill Murray $25,000 Viktor Kulish
$25,000 Christopher Lewis $25,000 Narayan Patel
$25,000 Narayan Patel $25,000 Aram Oganyan
$25,000 Daniel Glass $25,000 Roongsak Griffeth
$25,000 Kirk Acevedo $25,000 Rajesh Vohra
$25,000 Alejandro Jauregui Reynoso $25,000 Kultida Berman
$25,000 Kodey Hammer $25,000 Jaime Madrigal
$25,000 Russell McClean $25,000 Ryan McKnight
$25,000 John Riordan $25,000 Ryan McKnight
$25,000 Ron Moisecu $25,000 Lemarc Harrell
$25,000 Darin Utley $25,000 Nicholas Agnew
$25,000 Kenneth Mapoy $25,000 Todd Hoopfer
$25,000 Michael Clough $25,000 Kevin Schulz
$25,000 Joao Barroso Valli $25,000 Shahaf Nacson
$25,000 Baptiste Ozenne $25,000 Joseph Salvaggi
$25,000 Carmen Raiche Marsden $25,000 Patrick Liang
$25,000 Stephen Song $25,000 Guan Chen
$25,000 Tyler Brown    

Day 3 was played down to one table of ten players who battled it out until only eight remained, and the official final table was decided. The players were moved to the feature table, and the livestream covered the play down to a winner and their bracelet presentation.

Event #3: $1,000 Mystery Millions Final Table Results

Place Name Country Prize (USD)
1 Tyler Brown USA $1,000,000
2 Guang Chen USA $561,320
3 Ryan McKnight USA $429,360
4 Steven Thompson Costa Rica $330,150
5 Rhian Fineis USA $255,210
6 Tauan De Oliveira Naves Brazil $198,320
7 Dan Shak USA $154,940
8 Tam Ho Canada $121,683

Not long after the final table kicked off, the first elimination came in the form of Tam Ho exiting in eighth for $121,683 as he lost the most crucial flip of his tournament journey. The pocket fours of Steven Thompson held against his ace-ten, providing the first bust out of this final table.

Dan Shak
Dan Shak

In seventh place fell Dan Shak, the most celebrated player left in the field. Shak found himself all in holding pocket eights against the pocket jacks of Guang Chen. While Shak managed to flop more outs as he held the eight of hearts on a monotone board, the turn and river did not oblige, and Shak was eliminated for $154,940.

Tauan De Oliveira Naves was the sixth-place finisher at this final table as he got the chips in front holding ace-jack against the ten-nine of Thompson. However, Thompson pulled ahead on the turn and remained that way, sending Naves to the rail for $198,320.

Out in fifth place was Rhian Fineis, who landed on the wrong side of a coin toss as his ace-jack came up against the pocket tens of Tyler Brown. Failing to connect to the board, Brown’s tens held, and Fineis exited in fifth with $255,210 for his efforts.

Exiting in fourth was Thompson, whose queen-six couldn’t get there against the ace-five of Chen, sending him home for $330,150. Upon Thompson’s exit, the Horseshoe got a little quieter as his energetic rail left alongside him, celebrating Thompson’s deep run.

Ryan McKnight departed in third place for $429,360. Chen was the beneficiary of his chips as McKnight got it all in with queen-six dominated by the queen-ten of Chen. This got the heads-up match underway.

Guang Chen
Guang Chen finished in second place

The heads-up battle between Brown and Chen only lasted three hands. The majority of chips fell into the hands of Brown after a life-changing hero call with just ace high gave him a dominating chip lead and setting him on the home straight for his first WSOP bracelet.
It was not long after that the heads-up match was settled. Brown’s queen-seven pulled ahead of Chen’s ace-jack to win $1,000,000 and the bracelet.

Winner’s Interview

Brown clearly has an extensive background in Pot Limit Omaha, as five of the six live cashes he has to his name included some form of PLO. In regards to his newfound success in No Limit Hold’em, Brown humbly stated, “I’ve played tournaments here and there, I’ve got, ya know, some idea of what I’m doing, but obviously, I’m a lot stronger PLO player. There were a lot better Hold’em players than me in this field, I obviously got insanely lucky with 18,000 people”.

Although, luck can’t be the only factor to attribute to Brown’s success: “A lot of my study came four or five years ago,” Brown commented, “I took almost two years off poker, decided to come back at the end of last year, early this year, and it’s been unbelievable in these last six months”.

With a huge, tournament-defining hero call under his belt, Brown simply commented, “It was good for the live stream”.

Having made two WSOP final tables in succession, the first being the $5,000 No Limit Hold’em/Pot Limit Omaha event, Brown was pleased to remark, “These are the only WSOP events I’ve ever played”.

This certainly won’t be the last we hear from Brown in the 2023 World Series as he continued, “Given where I am now, Player of the Year seems like a decent opportunity, so I could see myself firing a lot”. With his eruption onto the live poker circuit in 2023, this certainly confirms speculation that Tyler Brown is one to watch.

That concludes PokerNews‘ coverage of this event, but the 2023 WSOP is far from over. Be sure to tune into PokerNews each day, as we bring you all of the action from every one of the bracelet-awarding events.

  • 1 Peter Thai Wins First Bracelet of the 2023 WSOP: Event #1: $500 Casino Employees ($75,535)
  • 2 Alexandre Vuilleumier Captures 2023 WSOP Event #2: $25K High Roller Title
  • 3 Cody “1eggadaymike” Bell Wins WSOP Bracelet and $87,665 in the Triple Treys Summer Tip Off
  • 4 Michael Moncek Wins Event #6: $5,000 Mixed No-Limit Hold’em/Pot-Limit Omaha for $534,499
  • 5 Chad Eveslage Steamrolls to Second WSOP Bracelet in Event #5: $1,500 Dealer’s Choice (6-Handed) ($131,879)
  • 6 Ronnie Day Reigns Supreme in Event #4: Tournament of Champions ($200,000)
  • 7 Vadim Shlez Takes Down Event #7: $1,500 Limit Hold’em For $146,835
  • 8 Chanracy Khun Wins Event #8: $25,000 Heads-Up No-Limit Hold’em Championship
  • 9 Nick Schulman Wins Event #9: Seven Card Stud For Fourth WSOP Bracelet ($110,800)
  • 10 Ian “IanMa” Matakis Wins Online Event #2: $500 No-Limit Hold’em Bankroll Builder for $120,686
  • 11 Ryan “dna2rna” Hughes Wins Third Bracelet, Defeats Shaun “fortnite” Deeb in Online Battle
  • 12 Tyler Brown Crowned Champion of Event #3: $1,000 Mystery Millions ($1,000,000)
  • 13 Kenneth O’Donnell Wins Event #11: $600 No-Limit Hold’em Deepstack For $351,098

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