American players

Posted by gambler101 on May 23, 2011 in online poker

statue of liberty
One of the news that has been the most talked about in recent history is the crackdown by the Department of Justice and the FBI of the four leading poker rooms operating in the USA on April 15th 2011: Pokerstars, Full Tilt Poker, Absolute Poker and UB Poker. Yes this unprecedented shutdown and indictment of eleven individuals has shocked the world of online poker and is probably the most important news event in the industry since the enactment of UIEGA in 2006. Event the creation of rush poker which in itself is the most significant breakthrough in online gaming technology in the past few years is nothing compared to Black Friday. No event comes to mind in the past decade except maybe the WSOP victory by amateur player Chris Moneymaker in 2003.

Ironically some were smiling one or two years ago when the French were working on a new online gaming law. Yes this law tightly enforced by ARJEL may not have pleased all players and operators and it is far from perfect in particular as it forces French online poker players to play in a closed vessel among themselves, missing the benefits of globalization and internationalization. But at least the French were able to regulate online gaming and to collect well-needed taxes in the process. By the way PokerStars has established itself as the leader of French online poker and you can use this code marketing pokerstars in order to get a bonus reserved to new players only.

Back to our topic about US online poker, it is hard to make any sense of the action of the Government in the past 5 years. Starting in 2006 with the UIGEA, half of the operators left the US market, including major brand names such as Party Poker. Now five years later they are banning the 4 leaders of what was left in this market, and nowadays only a few minor players remain. It is fair to say that online poker is about 10-20% of what it should be if the major brands were allowed to operate normally.

I always found it funny when I saw movies about the Prohibition, will Al Capone and the Chicago mafia reigning on the traffic of alcohol. Is not America supposed to be the country of freedom, after all the French gave them the Statue of Liberty not just to give light to the New York harbor but more so to represent their hope that this new country was where the future of freedom will reside. Not so much so, as it seems that lawyers and politicians are the ones ruling the States with no consideration for what consists in an infringement or not of the public’s right to decide how they want to spend their free time.

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Bill Smith and Longdoodie

Posted by gambler101 on Apr 3, 2010 in live poker

Bill Smith won the WSOP’ main event in 1985.

He was a very interesting poker character. He did not play terribly well when he was either sober or drunk, but in between he had a fantastic loose-aggressive style. When he won the WSOP main event, he arrived sober at the final table, but kept on drinking until he was completely intoxicated. By then he had accumulated a massive pile of chips and his aggressive plays aided by some good luck led him to the finish line.

In the mid 1960’s, there was huge poker around the western part of the Lone Star State. Bill was running a large game in an apartment house. His partner was Tennessee Longgoodie AKA James Roy. Both are in the pictures in Doyle’s book.

Bill played in games with many of the old rounders in those photographs: Johnny Moss, Doyle Brunson, Sailor Roberts, Amarillo Slim, George Barnes, Joe Floyd, Doc Ramsey, Pat Renfro, Paul Harvey, and Skeet Childress. The ole big hat Rangers raided Bill’s big game, the Cattleman’s game. Bill Smith had been arrested, robbed, stiffed, broke, and made some sweet scores also.

Back then they played with paper money. When a game ran all night, there would be huge stacks with lots of ones, five, twenties. After such an all day and all night game, it boiled down to four players, Bill, Tennessee Longgoodie and two wealthy producers, live ones.

Goodie and Bill threw in together with a sign, this being the way things were done back then. The sun was just coming up and there were only the four of them in this motel room. A big pot a show horse couldn’t jump over comes up between the two businessmen. There are big piles of paper money on the table and this saddens Bill and Goodie because one of them is about to bust the other one.

Now Jake had this habit of moving in on a flush draw and if he caught a call, he would jump up from the table and have everyone tell him how the deal came out. Well, he jumps up and runs to the window. Now the other fellow pockets what little he had left and gets up and gets his coat and leaves. Jake followed him outside and they were talking. Goodie and Bill were peeking out the window. The big ole pot was still sitting there in the center of the table as were the cards.

Finally they both drive off. Goodie and Bill cut up that money like it was a boarding house pie. They won one of the biggest pots of the night and neither of them were even in the pot.

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