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Today in the 3-Bet we find Phil Galfond back at the helm of a new coaching ship, the live poker scene in Mexico City taking off and social-gaming leviathan Zynga taken to task for its real-money poker fantasy.
1) Galfond Shares Brain Again, Launches Run It Once
One of the most popular poker coaches in the world as the lead instructor at Bluefire Poker, Phil Galfond has kept that poker-genius brain of his pretty much to himself since his deal with that site melted down last year.
Hinting at a surprise for his fans lately, Galfond revealed his much-anticipated return to poker coaching yesterday with the launch of Run It Once, a new multi-game, multi-stake training site.
Headed by Galfond and featuring a select group of “Essential” and “Elite” coaches, video packages are available from $10-$100 per month.
Among the coaches are famed high-stakers Di Dang and Hac Dang, Steve “gboro780” Gross, Australian crusher James Obst and multi-talented pros Jason Koon and Grayson Ramage.
As a teaser Galfond released a free video of him playing four tables of $200/$400 against Isildur1, Ben Sulsky, Gus Hansen and Ilari Sahamies.
2) Mexico City Legalizes Live Poker, Games Booming
We’ve heard a lot about US online pros moving to Mexico to play online (we've even documented Shuan Deeb's journey) but we rarely see much about the indigenous poker scene in Mexico.
Mostly, we think, because live poker is still more or less illegal in Mexico. And outside of a few pros such as Angel Guillen and JC Alvarado, Mexican poker stars haven’t seen much spotlight time yet.
That’s likely not for long, though, as the live poker scene is on the rise according to PokerStars pro Christian de León.
In a new blog post de León says Mexico City has finally legalized live poker and the result is a booming poker market:
“Just recently, Mexico City legalized live poker. We now have three live poker rooms publicly operating in the city and they already match some of the better poker rooms I've seen across the world…
“Poker is exploding in Mexico in a way we didn't even dream about just a few years ago. I'm happier than ever and I still have a lot of poker to look forward to this year.”
Read the full post here.
3) Forbes Writer Doubts Zynga Real-Money Fantasy
Speaking of newbie-poker promised lands...
We’ve all heard the rumblings that Zynga is the land of milk and honey for spewing poker noobs ready to breath new life into the poker economy once they convert to real money.
Only hitch with that theory? Of the millions throwing play-money chips around on Zynga’s social poker game, 90% of them might be 15-year-olds from underdeveloped nations.
Breaking down the hype around Zynga’s recent application for a real-money license in Nevada, Forbes writer Nathan Vardi has a great piece up today explaining why the much ballyhooed Zynga goldmine isn’t much of a goldmine at all.
“Zynga’s real-money online poker prospects are not as great as one might think. Running real-money games is a very different type of experience than free-play games and Zynga has zero experience doing it.
“Furthermore, a very high percentage of Zynga’s online poker players are under the age of 18 and come from countries like Indonesia says a well-informed online poker source.
"In addition, if any form of online poker comes to America, Zynga will have to deal with big and rich competitors."
Read the full piece here.