Poker’s In and Out List: Binking Slots, Taking Shots

Eric Baldwin
Eric Baldwin spotted the slot jackpot that headlines this week's In List.

The In and Out List is a lesson in snap judgments, a weekly guide to who in the poker world deserves your cheers, and who merits only jeers.

Today on the In List we’ve got one lucky man who knows it’s better to hit a slot jackpot than bink a small tournament, along with a well-known high-stakes pro who isn’t afraid to get out of his comfort zone with big money on the line.

On the Outs is another high-stakes challenge that sounds great but will never happen, and our hopes for federal online poker legislation in the US this year.

Buckle up. This is the In and Out List.

Poker’s In List: February 12-19,2012

Hitting a $250k Slots Jackpot on the Break from a $560 Poker Tournament: IN

This story comes by way of Eric Baldwin who’s been playing the latest Deep Stack Extravaganza at the Venetian in Las Vegas.

Apparently a player in a $560 tournament was on break, and nailed a quarter-million dollar slot jackpot!

It’s uncertain how much he cared about the tournament following that score, according to Baldwin:

@basebaldy  Some guy in this $560 poker tournament hit a slot machine for $250k during break. Bet he's real focused on this $25k belt.

Baldwin is faring pretty well himself, having won a $350 Deep Stack event for $10,041 last Tuesday.

Learning Backgammon for $80k/Game: IN

Poker pros are value-seeking missiles yeah? Able to shrewdly deduce whether a proposition is going to pay off over the long run?

It might be true for some pros but in the case of Justin “BoostedJ” Smith we think it’s safer to say he’s willing to give up EV for gambling thrills.

We submit this tweet as evidence:

Justin Smith
Step 1: Learn Backgammon. Step 2: Bet $80,000 per game.
 

@BoostedJ Still unsure if it was a good idea or not to be playing $80k/game backgammon last night 2 minutes after hearing the rules explained

Most poker players can’t fathom throwing down $10k for the WSOP Main Event so it’s a little hard to wrap your head around putting eight times that down on a game you just learned a few minutes before.

That is … if you believe he hasn’t been practicing in secret late at night for the last few months. Kidding.

Poker’s Out List: February 12-19,2012

High-Stakes Online Challenges that Never Work: OUT

We’ve been burned before (cough, durrrr Challenge) so when people start throwing around ideas like a $50k buy-in high-stakes heads-up cash game world championship we get anxious.

Sure, we’d love to believe that the world’s best high-stakes online cash players would battle it out round-robin style at $50/$100 heads-up tables on the internet.

We’d be overjoyed to think that elite pros like Dan Cates, Justin Bonomo, Ben Sulsky and Isaac Haxton would be in on it.

It would be awesome to believe something like that was even possible but as we’ve seen from much simpler challenges, poker players suck at sticking to schedules.

So yeah, we’ll believe it when we see it.

The idea was introduced in a new thread on Two Plus Two so head over there to see the full discussion.

Online Poker Regulation at a Federal Level: OUT … until 2013

The US government has a reputation for moving slowly (really slowly … like Eskimo Clarke in the Vegas sun slowly) so it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that online poker regulation won’t be solved overnight.

But according to one Wall Street analyst, it’s a safe bet we won’t be seeing regulation at the federal level until at least 2013.

The Las Vegas Review Journal ran quotes from Macquarie Securities gaming analyst Chad Beynon, saying that if lawmakers were going to get it done this year they would have attached it to the recent payrtoll tax cut extension.

The good news for some Americans is that we could see online poker in the US in 2012, just at a state level.

Nevada and California are expected to the be the first.

assets/photos/authors/_resampled/croppedimage6060-matthew-showell.jpg
About Matthew Showell

Matt Showell was born and raised in the fair city of Vancouver, Canada. He now spends the bulk of his time traveling the globe, reporting on the world’s biggest poker tournaments. Matt has lived and breathed poker since the end of high school when he learned the most common variants at home games with his friends. In university he made his living playing low-stakes cash games and multi-table tournaments online while following the professional circuit on television and the Internet and in magazines.

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