That said, however, there were many other news stories that dominated the two months prior to the largest poker tournament on the planet.
At the beginning of April, the World Poker Association broke the 1,000-player mark and, as stated by its founder Jesse Jones, introduced a board of trustees for the organization. The elections ran for approximately a month and, after the votes were tallied, saw Annie Van Bebber, introduced legislation in April that would legalize cash game play in select locations around the state. After passing out of committee by a nearly unanimous vote, the bill died on the floor of the Texas legislature when it was not brought to a vote.
Menendez has vowed to continue the fight in the future and has the backing of thousands of players in the state of Texas as well as groups such as the Poker Players Alliance.
In the state of North Carolina, however, the story was much different. In May, the North Carolina Court of Appeals heard the case of Howard Fierman, who wanted to open a poker club in Raleigh and, after discussing the issue with many district attorneys, was prevented from doing so.
He challenged their decisions on the grounds that poker was a game of skill and not chance, thereby avoiding the North Carolina statutes regarding such games. The Court of Appeals dealt a bad hand to Fierman, though, as it Jonathan Little and Shawn Buchanan take championships at the Mirage and the Mandalay Bay. The European Poker Tour wrapped its third season by crowning a champion at the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo. American Gavin Griffin, who was joined at the final table by pros Andrew Black, Ram Vaswani, Soren Kongsgaard and Marc Karam, enjoyed the profits of the trip by taking down that title.
Finally, as it wound its way to Las Vegas for the granddaddy of poker tournaments, the World Series of Poker Circuit saw Cory Carroll (in April at Caesars in Las Vegas) and Louie Esposito (in May at Harrah's in New Orleans) take down the final Circuit championships for their third season.
As May wrapped up, the poker world held its collective breath as the greatest show on earth, the World Series of Poker, prepared to take center stage. We'll look back at the events of the summer of 2007 in our next installment of the Year in Review.