Poker News Update for July

Posted by Poker Videos on July 30th, 2011

There is a lot going on inside the world of poker right now. Major poker tournaments, various real money poker games and live events are all stirring attention and action.
Major Live Tournaments:
PokerStars Asian Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) has opened for season five. This year it began in a new location for the tour. The Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia hosted the major poker event. Joe Hachem and Chris Moneymaker offered the traditional call to “shuffle up and deal” at the beginning of the event. The first stop main event was a 5 thousand dollar buy in that attracted more than 260 competitors from at least 18 separate countries. At the close of day one, Mitch Carle a local Australian poker professional led the boards.
Daniel Cates Photo
Daniel Cates

Immigration Trouble:
Daniel Cates aka ‘Jungleman12’ made an effort to move north to the neighboring country of Canada to continue his poker career. He was stopped before he was able to make the move successfully. According to his tweets on the popular online social network, Twitter, Daniel Cates was removed from the country as an illegal alien. This does not bode well for an American attempting to immigrate to a country that will enable him to compete in the game he plays well. He was informed he required a visa in order to make the move properly. He’s indicated the desire to obtain a temporary visa until the situation is properly sorted out.
Training Video getting a lot of attention:
Jose Girah aka the Portuguese Poker Prodigy, created a new mid-stakes training video. He took great care with the instruction and creation and some are deeming it the best video of all time. In the forum, Two Plus Two a poll is indicating that the vast majority of people are deeming it simply a very good video. The thread has had many viewers who looked at the video and stated their thoughts on it directly. Some believe his approach was subpar, while others have clearly stated that his unveiling of secret approaches to the game are just going to generate more interest and less fish to pool from. The video can be found here: You be the judge.
Poker in India
With two country centered poker tours, India is developing their own flavor of poker professional. This year’s India Poker Championship had 59 entrants into the main event. The winner, Nikhil Jain, walked home with 2173.22 or more than 96 thousand rupees. This impressive showing for a local math wiz is leading some to begin discussing the potential for an Indian Poker boom. While real money poker is available in India online and off, much of the speculation is based around the India Poker Championship and the India Poker Series. These two tournament events are drawing a steady crowd each year. Unlike in the USA, the UK and other parts of Europe, where the most successful poker professionals resemble the hard working mentality displayed in Nikhil Jain, India’s professional market is still lacking. In time this may change as the events grow and the Indian people realize that poker is more than a game of chance.
Google Plus Circling the Pro’s
As Google unveiled Google Plus by invitation only, it has already moved the headlines. Many millions are signed up through the Beta version of the site and are circling friends, family, business associates and of course poker industry professionals. Here’s a short list of poker industry professionals already known to be on Google Plus. With Google’s current operating procedures based on real life names, looking up someone not on this short list is very easy. If you are confident you have identified a false account, submitting feedback with a link to the squatting account will rapidly rectify the situation. Enjoy the circling!
Jay Rosenkrantz (KRANTZ) – Deucescracked
Rob Cole (Entity) – DeucesCracked
Joe Tall (JoeTall) – DeucesCracked
Andrew Seidman (BalugaWhale, I’m almost sure) – DeucesCracked
Taylor Caby (GreenPlastic) – Cardrunners
Brian Hastings (Stinger88) – Cardrunners
Kirsty Arnett – PokerNews
Nat Arem – 2p2 Legend

How Much Money Did Phil Ivey Owe Full Tilt Poker?

Posted by Poker Videos on July 29th, 2011

Noah Stephens-Davidowitz or NoahSD on Two Plus Two has released partial data of Phil Ivey and David Benyamine’s debts to Full Tilt Poker. It is not exactly stated in the article on who the source is from Full Tilt Poker, but the evidence seems real. It is data from notes on their poker accounts and may not include payments made offline.

NoahSD reports:
Early in the data, Phil Ivey’s account was frequently debited directly for some, though not all, of the money that he was loaned there. For example, Ivey borrowed $3 million in six $500,000 installments spread throughout July and August 2009. He then repaid $1 million on October 29th, borrowed another $500,000 on November 13th, and then made two separate $1 million repayments on November 20th and 22nd respectively.4 Ivey’s results on the datamining site HighstakesDB suggest that he earned approximately $5 million in cash games on Full Tilt Poker in October and November of 2009, so this success may be the reason that he repaid. (Ivey went on to borrow $1 million on November 29th.)

However, this pattern stops. The last repayment in our data (for $1 million) happened in the spring of 2010, but after this date, Ivey received eight additional loans, ending in January 2011 and totalling $3,215,000, bringing the total difference between loans and repayments in our data to $6,215,000.5 It is of course possible that Ivey repaid some or all of this debt off of the site, but Tiltware’s reference to a “large sum that he owes the site” and Ivey’s historical pattern of repaying through his account suggest that he did indeed owe the site money as recently as June 1st.

So it is possible that Ivey still owed the site $6,215,000. This was reported (but not with exact figures) when Full Tilt Poker made a statement a few months back after Phil Ivey filed lawsuit against them:

Full Tilt Poker responded to Phil Ivey’s lawsuit:
“Contrary to his sanctimonious public statements, Phil Ivey’s meritless lawsuit is about helping just one player – himself. In an effort to further enrich himself at the expense of others, Mr. Ivey appears to have timed his lawsuit to thwart pending deals with several parties that would put money back in players’ pockets. In fact, Mr. Ivey has been invited — and has declined — to take actions that could assist the company in these efforts, including paying back a large sum of money he owes the site. Tiltware doubts Mr. Ivey’s frivolous and self-serving lawsuit will ever get to court. But if it does, the company looks forward to presenting facts demonstrating that Mr. Ivey is putting his own narrow financial interests ahead of the players he professes to help.”
Phil ivey craps
Phil Ivey playing craps image from Pocket Fives
“Mr. Ivey has been invited — and has declined — to take actions that could assist the company in these efforts, including paying back a large sum of money he owes the site.”

David Benyamine
David Benyamine

In addition to Phil Ivey owing the company money, David Benyamine also had substantial loans from Full Tilt Poker:

In 2008, David Benyamine apparently owed Full Tilt Poker money, and at least some of this debt was being repaid directly from his salary, wages, and bonuses. This is quite clear from the notes on his FTP account. He received many payments from Full Tilt during this time period directly into his account, and almost all of them were taken out of the account on the same day with the note “for a loan collection.”7

In 2008, Benyamine received directly to his account a $15,000 per month base salary, roughly $12,000 more per month on average from rakeback and hourly wages, roughly $4,000 per month in logo bonuses and other marketing bonuses, and roughly $10,000 per month in other payments. So, assuming that our sample is typical, his annual earnings sent directly to his FTP account were roughly $500,000 at the time. (It is of course likely that he received money off of the site as well.) However, it appears that almost all of this was going directly back to the site to repay Benyamine’s debt.

As of right now all real money poker play in USA and abroad is closed on Full Tilt Poker. There was a leak over a month ago that the site was sold to a European investor, but this seems less likely now.

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