Pocket Bullets ParisJim “Pocket Bullets” Paris

Someone recently asked if I ever played poker while touring the world in my past Rock & Roll history, so I decided to re-post the following. Check it out!

…In the past I have written about rock and roll and alluded to my personal rock ‘n roll past. I wrote about contributing to the Buddy Miles biography in a press release that you can read here, and I have written about how, when we were touring, we often played poker to kill time while cruising in our “Stretched out Silver Eagle” going from one gig to the next. I’ve even written a few poker lyrics  that ended up in a collaboration between my wife, myself and the incredibly talented Randy Pavlock. That collaboration ended up with the Texas Poker Store producing the music video of “I May Be Bluffin.”

Buddy Miles playing a friendly game of poker while on tour.

Recently, a friend sent me this pic of Buddy Miles actually trying to read my poker face, and if memory serves me correctly, he was holding a pair of cowboys that were no match for my trip queens. Buddy was always  much better at playing drums than playing Poker!

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Lynn "Queen of Hearts" Paris

Lynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

With the coronavirus pandemic shutting down live poker events for most of 2020, poker fans quickly realized that the WSOP Main Event at the Rio in Las Vegas wasn’t going to happen, at least not the way it always had in the past. Over the summer, the WSOP held a special “Season Finale” Online Circuit Event from June 3-14. It was very successful, since many more players could compete online without the expenses associated with the usual 101- live event.

2020 World Series of Poker Main Event

Now, it seems that WSOP executives are planning to try a mix of live and online tournaments in a 2020 Main Event. Of course, the thousands of players who competed in the Season Finale this summer thought that was the Main Event, but now there is another one. It is officially called the 51st WSOP 2020 Man Event and will combine online and live poker in the US and internationally. It will be a more traditional event, more closely mimicking the one in Las Vegas each year. It will require a $10K buy-in ($9,600 + $400) and offer no reentries. Players will receive 60K chips and play 30-minute levels.

Unfortunately, players in the United States must be located in either Nevada or New Jersey in order to participate in the tournament on WSOP.com. The schedule is as follows:

Sunday, December 13, noon PST:  Day 1 with 20 levels of play (6 hours of late registration)

Monday, December 14, noon PST:  Day 2 to play down to 9 at the final table

Monday, December 28:  Final table play to a winner

The US final table will play out live at the Rio All-Suite Hotel &Casino in Las Vegas and be filmed by ESPN. However, if any player tests positive for Covid-19 prior to play, it will disqualify that person from competing at the final table. That person will receive ninth-place money.

For more details, check out the Player’s Guide at wsop.com/online-players-guide/?sf239998309=1

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Lynn "Queen of Hearts" Paris

Lynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

Animosity has been growing steadily between heads-up pro Doug Polk and Daniel Negreanu, who has spent the majority of his career playing mixed games and tournaments.

Poker Hall of FamerNegreanubrings his long list of poker accomplishments to the tables, including a six time World Series of Poker bracelet winner , a two-time champion on the World Poker Tour and a long term cash game success; DNegs has earned his way to the pinnacle of the poker world and has been a full-fledged poker star for close to 30 years. Online poker is not Negreanu’sfavorite place to do battle , although he’s been sponsored by PokerStars and now GGPoker, and Heads up is not his preferred game either. (they say he’s been practicing)

Doug Polk is one of the online legends of poker. He was a dominant force in high stakes heads up play for the better part of a decade, playing under the moniker ‘WGCRider.’ He also held his own in the live tournament arena, winning three WSOP bracelets (including the “High Roller for One Drop” in 2017) and amassing over $9 million in live career earnings. He created Upswing Poker, a training site, in 2018 and had retired from an active career in playing poker, but he couldn’t resist taking on Negreanu.

After months of haggling over the terms of the match, the highly anticipated grudge match got underway on Nov. 5, 2020. It was an extremely cordial first session. Check out the five best hands: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-KzBaHFNq8Y

Watch the grudge match and study their moves then practice on your own table from the Texas Poker Store.

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Lynn "Queen of Hearts" Paris

Lynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

This is definitely NOT a political blog. However, there are times when politics and poker bump into each other, and, in the case of Lindsey Graham, the Senator from South Carolina who is undeniably the biggest hypocrite in a Senate replete with them, his professed hatred of internet gambling makes him an enemy of online poker players. It also allows me to focus this blog on him, which it is my pleasure to do.

For whatever reason, Graham has been anti-poker for many years, ending with his co-sponsorship of a bill that tried to prohibit all forms of internet gambling.

Back in 2011, the Department of Justice re-interpreted the Federal Wire Act (1961), thereby allowing states to establish online lotteries, as well as legalize online casino games. This proved to be very profitable for Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware, but Graham wasn’t buying it. His response was, “Because of the Obama Administration’s decision, virtually any cell phone or computer can again become a video poker machine.”

In 2014, Graham tried to kill the deal by introducing the Restore America’s Wire Act (RAWA) to Congress. Its main purpose was “To restore long-standing United States policy that the Wire Act prohibits all forms of Internet gambling, and for other purposes.His bill died in committee, to the delight of poker players everywhere.

Apparently, Graham tried to get the last three attorneys general to take up his cause, but none of them was particularly interested.

Then along came billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, whose views on internet poker were well known. He called it “a threat to our society” and had backed Graham’s 2014 bill, which raised some doubts as to Graham’s real motivation.

“The fact that Sheldon is on board is a good thing,” said Graham at the time, “But I’m doing this because this is what I feel like I should do.” Really?

Given that Senator Graham is fighting hard to retain his Senate seat and has publicly displayed his blatant hypocrisy (think the recent Supreme Court nomination) it just could be that the Senator is trying to play his cards right in order to get his hands on a much bigger donation from the megadonor. 

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