It's a brave new poker world as the first week of 2012 comes to an end, and as always PokerListings.com is ready with a brand new set of snap judgments.
The first In and Out List of the New Year features a 5-star photoshop thread, Eugene Katchalov's POY win, poker in Macau and Beth Shak.
Read on to see who gets a tip of the hat, and who gets a wag of the finger.
Poker’s In List: January 2-8, 2012
5-Star Galfond Photoshop Threads: IN
Five star threads on Two Plus Two generate some of the best poker content on the Internet, especially when they involve Photoshop.
The most recent example features Phil Galfond, arms crossed, sitting in a sauna with two women in leopard print robes. Yeah we're not sure where that came from either.
Eugene Katchalov as Bluff Magazine POY: IN
Eugene Katchalov is In this week for taking down Bluff Magazine’s 2011 Player of the Year honors, announced earlier this week.
Katchalov was an absolute monster in tournaments last year, earning over $2.5 million, winning his first WSOP bracelet and notching a victory in the PCA $100k buy-in Super High Roller event.
Katchalov has always proven himself to be one of the sharper knives in the drawer, having made a well-timed switch from a career in finance shortly before the economy really tanked.
We'd go for something a bit bigger but to each his own.
We had the opportunity to speak with Katchalov in depth about his background so click here if you want to get to know him a little better.
Isildur1’s Old Apartment in Gothenburg: Still IN
In this week is the kind of modern Swedish apartment you can get if you play nosebleed games on the Internet like Isildur1.
Back in 2010 pictures surfaced of Viktor Blom’s apartment in Sweden and, as expected, the poker fanboys reacted, rabidly.
Just a few days ago someone found the architect’s website profile of the apartment and we have to say, Isildur’s original photos did not do it justice.
Poker’s Out List: January 2-8, 2012
Beth Shak’s Appearance on NY Ink: OUT
Beth Shak has never been shy about media exposure. In fact, you’re more likely to see her on television for a media appearance than a final table. Most recently she was on NY Ink on TLC, getting tattoos of her astrological sign and, you guessed it, a shoe.
Beth Shak appears on TLC's NY Ink.
Both Shak and NY Ink are Out this week for their inability to set up even a fake hand of Texas Hold’em properly.
Here’s a hint: The same card shows up as someone’s hole card and on the flop. And by showdown one of the player’s hole cards have completely changed. Nice job.
Shak even had some words of strategy wisdom to share saying, “Heads-up poker is essentially luck.” The way she plays, she’s probably right.
Macau for Not Valuing Poker: OUT
It hasn’t happened yet but according to an article from PokerPortalAsia.com the dominance of casino games like baccarat could spell disaster for the future of poker in Macau.
Macau casinos showed revenue of roughly $33.5 billion in 2011. That’s up 42 percent over 2010 and represents an unbelievable 5.5 times the money generated by Las Vegas strip casinos in the same time period.
Even more amazingly, an estimated 91 percent of that number was generated by baccarat. And it’s baccarat’s dominating popularity that might eventually edge out poker rooms.
This prediction seems to be at odds with the frequent high-stakes games we’ve been seeing over the last year or two. The very likely explanation is that there will always be a place for high-stakes poker, if it gets the rich baccarat players in the door.