ICYMI: PokerStars Joins New Jersey Online Gaming Wars and How Do You Pay For A WSOP Buy-in?



As approximately 7000 people prepare to start the 2013 World Series of Poker $10,000 Championship Event tomorrow (not all at once, mind you), there are some other stories that are making the rounds of the poker community. In this edition of “ICYMI,” PokerStars has finally found a potential partner in the New Jersey online gaming wars and did a player at the WSOP pay for his entry into a tournament with stolen money?

PokerStars Joins Forces With Resorts Casino Hotel for New Jersey Online Poker

After being rebuffed in their efforts to purchase the Atlantic Club in Atlantic City as a portal into the new New Jersey online gaming market, PokerStars has entered into an agreement with the Resorts Casino Hotel to provide online gaming when the market opens up later this year.

Resorts Casino Hotel, owned by the Mohegan Gaming Advisors (also responsible for the Mohegan Sun in Connecticut), has been undergoing some expansion of late. In June, the business opened up a Margaritaville Café on the property and they view the addition of PokerStars to their operation as an excellent step towards furthering their growth. “This is another blue chip partner for Resorts,” Resorts’ Chairman Morris Bailey stated in a press release.

“Resorts is a fantastic partner for us and we are looking forward to launching PokerStars in the U. S.,” Mark Scheinberg, the Chief Executive Officer of The Rational Group (the ownership behind PokerStars), added. “We are happy to invest in New Jersey and we are excited about building a successful relationship with Resorts.”

Where the deal may have some issues is through the regulatory process. The New Jersey Casino Control Commission, who is the arbiters of the online gaming regulations, will have to review the PokerStars/Resorts application, as they will with the other twelve casinos that are eligible for online gaming licenses. When PokerStars was unable to secure a temporary license through the NJCCC in May for the Atlantic Club purchase (the NJCCC tabled their decision on the subject until August) after protests from the American Gaming Association, the proposed $50 million sale of the Atlantic Club to PokerStars fell through.

If the proper licenses can be obtained, there are a host of New Jerseyites who will be leaping for joy about the return of PokerStars to its borders.

How Do YOU Buy Into A WSOP Event?

According to reports from a Spokane newspaper, a player at the World Series of Poker has allegedly used illegally obtained cash to play in one of the tournaments.

The Spokane Spokesman-Review reports that, in May, more than $25,000 was stolen from the Lancer Lanes Casino in Clarkston. Arrested in that robbery were two men, James Nollette and Troy Wilcoxon, who were charged with burglary, theft and money laundering charges in the Asotin County Superior Court. The detective in charge of the case believes that the two men went to Las Vegas following the heist.

Clarkston Police Department Detective Richard Muszynski cited that there was no forced entry into the casino, leading police to believe that the robbery was an inside job. Wilcoxon was employed by the Lancer Lanes Casino when it was robbed on May 23 and, soon afterwards, is alleged to have driven with Nollette in a rented car to Las Vegas, where the men had an eight day stay.

After arriving in Las Vegas, Wilcoxon took part in the first event of the 2013 WSOP, the $500 Casino Employees Event, taking down an 11th place finish for slightly more than $5000. Detective Muszynski states that “there’s a good chance, but we don’t know” if Wilcoxon used any of the allegedly stolen funds (Wilcoxon has maintained his innocence, implicating another Lancer Lanes Casino employee), but apparently there was enough evidence to arrest both Wilcoxon and Nollette on a variety of charges.

As of today, only one bundle of $5 bills totaling $100 has been recovered from the robbery.

The two men are currently out on bail and face another court appearance on Monday following the Fourth of July holiday weekend.

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