November 19th – Weekly Update

Welcome to Poker News Daily’s Weekly Update. I’m Sean Gibson and I’ll be bringing you the top headlines in the world of poker for this past week. So – let’s get right to it!

In an impressive feat, Joe Tehan ran the table in the PokerStars North American Poker Tour Los Angeles finale, eliminating all seven of his opponents to pull in seven hundred twenty five thousand dollars. Tehan’s claim to fame to this point was winning the World Poker Tour’s Mandalay Bay Poker Championship four years ago for one million dollars.

Jason Mercier, Michael Binger, and Anh Van Nguyen also made the final table. Here’s how the final eight cashed out:

1: Joe Tehan – $725,000
2: Chris DeMaci – $440,000
3: Al Grimes – $250,000
4: Anh Van Nguyen – $195,000
5: Ray Henson – $145,000
6: Michael Binger – $114,000
7: Jason Mercier – $84,857
8: Jake Toole – $60,000

In a rather bizarre interview posted on, Margarita Prentice, the brains behind the law in Washington State that makes playing online poker a Class C felony, insinuated that players out of a job should “go pump gas.”

Prentice told’s Gary Wise,

“I just think some of these arguments are utter nonsense. You mean you’re going to move so you can play poker? Gee, lots of luck in your life… I have nothing against card playing. That’s fine. If you want to do that, but I’m sure not going to worry about someone… you know. Let them go pump gas.”

As you can imagine, the response to Prentice’s comments has been less than cordial. Poker Players Alliance Executive Director John Pappas told PND on Thursday,

“It’s a complete picture of what kind of a lawmaker she is. Not only is she dismissive of an entire industry of individuals who enjoy poker, but the idea that her law is subjecting people to suffering – she’s totally ignorant of that. She refuses to see that she passed a law that’s unpopular.”

It was announced late last week that Chili Gaming will launch a subscription-based service to bring online poker to USA players. The subscription-based model allows players, for a nominal monthly charge, to play online poker legally in the United States since no actual money is transferred on the tables. The new Chili Gaming American option will complement the global offerings of the company.

New Jersey is one step closer to becoming the first state to regulate, license, and tax the internet gambling industry within its borders. A bill introduced by State Senator Raymond Lesniak in New Jersey cleared the state’s Senate Budget Committee and may now see debate. The committee approved Lesniak’s intrastate internet gambling bill by a ten to one margin on Monday, with two lawmakers abstaining.

If the bill were to become law, all games currently permitted in land-based casinos would be available online, including poker. The State would impose a twenty percent tax on gross gaming revenues and each operator would be required to pay a licensing fee. All told, New Jersey’s format could become the model that other states would follow.

If you have ever wanted to own a piece of poker history, now is your chance. This week, two thousand eight World Series of Poker Main Event Champion Peter Eastgate put his gold bracelet up for auction on eBay. But before you wonder if he is busto, it should be noted that the sale is an eBay Giving Works charitable listing and the proceeds from it will benefit UNICEF.

The collectible is quickly approaching fifty thousand dollars and even Tony G has gotten into the act. The PartyPoker pro is purportedly seeking to buy Eastgate’s bracelet for his German Shepard.

While the sale of a WSOP Main Event bracelet may come as a shock, it is not completely out of character for the champ. In July, Eastgate announced that he was taking an indefinite leave from live tournament poker. In a statement, he said in part,

“When I started playing poker for a living, it was never my goal to spend the rest of my life as a professional poker player. My goal was to become financially independent. I achieved that by winning the WSOP Main Event in 2008.”

Maria Ho, the last woman standing in the two thousand seven World Series of Poker Main Event, has joined The twenty seven year old becomes the newest face of the CEREUS Network site, which recently saw the departures of Billy Kopp, Matt Graham, and Michael Binger. Ho’s first live event as a sponsored pro of was at last weekend’s PokerStars NAPT LA stop. Besides her deep run in the WSOP Main Event three years ago, Ho’s poker resume includes a tenth place finish in the World Poker Tour’s Bellagio Cup in July and five in the money finishes in WSOP events over the last two years.

Finally, According to, the number of viewers tuned into the World Series of Poker Main Event final table fell thirty percent this year to one point five million. Last year, two point two million viewers watched the spectacle, which airs annually on ESPN. On Tuesday, ESPN aired the final table in the ten PM time slot, whereas past installments had been shown one hour prior at nine.

The final table broadcast scored a point six rating among adults age eighteen to forty nine, a key demographic for mainstream advertisers. In addition, a total of one point one million households tuned into the one hundred twenty five minute broadcast that saw Jonathan Duhamel become the first WSOP Main Event champion from Canada.

That does it for this week’s edition of the Poker News Daily weekly update. Be sure to check back with us every day for the latest in poker news and be sure to follow us on twitter as well at twitter dot com slash poker news daily. I’m Sean Gibson and have a fantastic poker weekend!

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