Poker Columns
Sunday, September 20, 2020
open/closeDan Ippolito

As Casino City's associate editor, Dan produces and edits all of our weekly newsletters, and he writes about the gaming industry for our websites and the GPWA Times Magazine. Dan graduated from Marist College in 2017 with a degree in Communications and a concentration in Sports.


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Casino City’s Friday Five: NFL and WSOP edition
 

Last night, the 2020 NFL season began with the Kansas City Chiefs’ commanding win over the Houston Texans, 34-20. If you took the Chiefs, who were a nine-point favorite on Intertops Sportsbook, you started the NFL betting season on the right foot. Our own Gary Trask dives into more future betting tips and picks for the remainder of the season. Before getting into that, we also have the World Series of Poker’s Online Series Main Event champion, New York casinos starting to reopen, a new sportsbook hitting Las Vegas next year, and Intertops hosting a Time Travel contest.

Let’s take a look at the online casino’s contest first:

5. $120,000 Time Travel casino bonus contest at Intertops Casino Red
During the Time Travel casino bonus contest, $30,000 in prizes will be awarded to frequent players every week. The competition continues until 5 October when there will be a final draw from all the weekly top 20 players for another $1,000.

Players will automatically earn points when they play any of the casino’s games. The players with the most points will win the biggest weekly prizes, including top prizes of $500. Each week, 300 players are awarded.

“I got the idea for this contest theme while I was playing Cubee,” said Intertops Casino’s manager. “I’ve always dreamed of going back in time, but I think a time travel adventure game is probably as close as I’ll come!”

4. Tuscany Suites and Casino to launch sportsbook in March 2021
Circa Sports – the Las Vegas-based sports betting venture from CEO Derek Stevens and his Golden Gate Hotel & Casino – has partnered with Tuscany Suites and Casino to launch a rebranded sportsbook. The reimagined space will mark the first Las Vegas expansion for Circa Sports outside of Stevens’ properties downtown, with the venue expected to open in March 2021.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Tuscany as Circa Sports’ first satellite location in Las Vegas,” said Stevens. “This will open a lot of doors in the market to provide wider sports betting opportunities for customers.”

Brett Heers, CEO of Tuscany, said, “We are excited about this relationship, with the level of product that Circa provides and second to none customer service, partnered with our ease of access location we believe we can be a top sports book destination.”

Circa Sports will continue to grow with the 28 October opening of the world’s largest sportsbook, located inside Stevens’ highly anticipated new Downtown Las Vegas casino-resort, Circa Resort & Casino.

3. Top 10 NFL betting tips and picks
COVID-19 has already taken several things away from the NFL, including the preseason and limiting the amount of fans allowed in stadiums during the season. That being said, the show must go on and football is back in action.

Will the global pandemic play a role in how certain bets play out during the season? Casino City’s Gary Trask covers topics such as the effect on scoring and how home-field advantage may not play as big of a role as it normally would.

He also dives into four future wagers that bettors should consider as the 2020-2021 season is finally upon us.

2. Madanzhiev wins the WSOP Online Main Event
With 12 players left in the World Series of Poker $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Main Event on GGPoker, Stoyan Madanzhiev got involved in what seemed to be a relatively standard lucky all-in hand, hitting a three on the turn with ace-three against the ace-nine of a short-stacked Samuel Vousden. Then, two players showed they'd folded a three, meaning Madanzhiev had hit a one-outer.

It wasn’t the final hand, but it was an important one that led Madanzhiev on his way to victory in the Online Main Event.

The Bulgarian, whose WSOP earnings amounted to about $5,500 coming in, all from GGPoker, won a staggering $3,904,686, the largest prize ever awarded in online poker.

Madanzhiev’s winnings were a part of the record-breaking $147,789,550 paid out across all 54 events in the online series.

1. New York casinos finally reopen
On 3 September, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced casinos and video lottery terminal facilities would be allowed to reopen starting 9 September with a 25% occupancy limit.

On Wednesday, the first day casinos were allowed to reopen, we saw several do exactly that.

At 10 a.m., Resorts World Catskills reopened its doors and implemented its 21 Point Safety Plan and adhere to the State's guidelines to ensure a safe reopening. As part of the first phase of reopening, guests will be able to enjoy 100,000 square feet of gaming action, including 150 live Las-Vegas style table games- with plexiglass dividers-, and state-of-the art slot machines. Four of the resort's restaurants and bars will open as well.

Some of the property’s protocols are listed below:
  • Upon arrival, Resorts World's staff will conduct noninvasive temperature checks using thermal scanners. Guests or team members with a temperature above 100.4 will not be permitted entry
  • All guests and team members will be required to wear face masks while on property
  • Plexiglass dividers have been installed on all table games, and select slot machines
Also on Wednesday morning, Rivers Casino & Resort Schenectady welcomed back guests for the first time since 16 March.

Rivers Casino’s new daily hours of operation will be from 8 a.m. to 2 a.m. Downtime will be used for intensive property-wide deep cleaning in addition to the continuous sanitizing which will take place throughout each day.

To comply with state guidelines and promote social distancing, Rivers Casino will be limiting gaming floor capacity to 25% occupancy until further notice. Guests will only be allowed to enter and exit the gaming floor at the entrance near the casino’s Event Center and The Landing Hotel.

The popular Rivers Sportsbook will be reopened, along with slots. Table games will not be available at this time, but will be back in action as soon as possible.

Face coverings will be required for all team members and employees.

Not all New York casinos did reopen on Wednesday. For example, Empire City Casino announced that it will start its phased reopening on 21 September.

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