For those that were a part of the inaugural stop by the Midway Poker Tour in Chicago a couple of weeks ago, the outcome probably wasn’t what they were expecting. The problems continue to increase for the founder of the organization, Dan Bekavac, as other issues have arisen. All of it is leaving many with a bad taste in their mouths for what was supposed to be an exciting new circuit.
Poker App Drops Bekavic
Allegedly the poker app PokerBROS was used by Bekavac in coordination with the Midway Poker Tour. For those that don’t know, PokerBROS is supposed to be a “free to play” app that allows friends to play poker (what they do outside of that regarding finances is the question) across national and international boundaries through “clubs.” Bekavic allegedly used the PokerBROS app for more than that, however.
It is alleged by many who participated in the event were forced to join PokerBROS using Bekavac’s affiliate club code as a condition for playing in the Midway Poker Tour event. This caveat was apparently not stated to players until they arrived to play the tournament. PokerBROS, understandably, did not approve of this move.
In a statement to Haley Hintze of PokerTube, PokerBROS acted quickly, banning him from the site and officially declaring they had nothing to do with the Midway Poker Tour event. “PokerBROS would like it to be made clear that they did not have prior knowledge of this event, did not endorse it, and the use of its trademarked name/logo without prior authorization is strictly against PokerBROS Terms of Service,” Hintze quotes them as stating. “As a result of this breach by the Midway Club, their Club has been banned from the PokerBROS platform.”
Still Issues With Money
Hintze also points out that there are still players who have yet to be paid for their finishes in the tournament. By Illinois charitable poker laws, players are prohibited from receiving more than $500 more than their buy-in. As the buy-in for the tournament was $1100 ($100 juice), players were prohibited from earning more than $1600 in cash from the event.
Bekavac and the Midway Poker Tour got around this – seemingly – by paying players in precious metals (silver and gold) that the tour overpaid for and gave to the players according to what they paid. The idea of Bekavac and the Midway Poker Tour was to have a precious metals dealer on site (who would give market value, meaning players would LOSE money), who would then take those metals and give them cash for the ducats. This was shut down because the idea that Bekavac and the Midway Poker Tour came up with was for one player to receive the coinage, cash it in, then the metals dealer to sell it back to Midway….OK, you get the idea. That plan was subsequently squashed by Illinois government officials because the actual money wasn’t on hand for the players to be paid.
The Midway Poker Tour was supposed to be a newcomer to the tournament poker circuit field that was supposedly a “player driven” organization. Last Sunday, 266 players put up their $1100 at the Sheraton Suites Chicago/Elk Grove, building a decent little prize pool that 31 players would receive a piece of. With the minimum prize at $2300, it became a problem when there suddenly wasn’t enough money around to pay the players (another good question – why?).
Hintze’s investigation points out some other instances where Bekavac has brushed up against the law, but the bottom line is that the Midway Poker Tour looks like it is going to be a “one and done” effort. Whether the players are “made full” as to what they won remains to be seen.