Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Goodbye online poker... for now.
I went to Hawaii 2 weeks ago with Mike, we had a great time! We stayed at the Kahala Resort and really got a chance to relax and enjoy the sun. We have friends who live there and it was also nice to catch up with them. It was a very last minute trip. Mike had been talking about wanting to go but we never got around to planning it. He called me one day and said he finally had booked it and that we were leaving that night on a red eye! Talk about spontaneous! I am so glad we went. It got our heads in the right mindset for the months to come and the WSOP.
By now, I’m assuming that everybody heard the news that last Friday the government and the feds shut down 3 of the major poker sites: Full Tilt, Pokerstars and UB/Absolute Poker. They made a few arrests and are suing the sites for money laundering. Everyone in the poker world went crazy; it got called the Black Friday of the poker industry and was the main conversation topic on Facebook and Twitter over the whole weekend.
I know that I will miss loging into my account and playing on my own hours, in the comfort of my home, some of my favorite games, but, is it the end of the world? Probably not. It's time to think about what's next and what other options there are.
Living in Vegas, I am very lucky to have casinos that offer different styles of cash games at many levels. Same goes with tournaments. With online poker gone, one has to realize how good and juicy the live games are going to get. Lots of online pros are talking about relocating to cities with casinos, after all, big CEO of companies do it all the time. They move their family where the jobs are and where the money is. Online pros are great players, they are not going to "donk off" their money easily. However, they are usually more aggressive and they play a loser style of poker which is excellent for the game. The weaker players do not know how to adjust to that and usually start playing bad. Those weaker players are the ones we are playing against. So it's a great thing! There are going to be more games, more action and more money on the tables. I can't complain!
The day after "Black Friday" I decided to go to the Aria to see if there was already a difference in the volume of players in the room. I opted to play the tournament that day. The place was packed but then again it was a Saturday. While playing the tournament, I could not believe how easy the field was. I ended up chopping it 3 ways which was pretty cool. The following day, Sunday, I decided to play live cash games and that is when I really saw the difference... Sunday nights are usually not that busy, there was a list for each games and every table was full. Live poker is going be off the hook!
I will miss online poker but, I am looking forward to playing live, being more focused, out of the house, and on more of a schedule. I am looking forward to the upcoming WSOP. The tournament circuit is also looking more attractive. I’m pretty confident that soon enough the online games will be regulated and we will be playing in the comfort of our homes again, legally and safely. In the meantime, let's fight for our rights, look for solutions, keep positive and keep playing the game we love in live games.
See you at the tables. :)