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Announcement of the schedule for PokerStars Festival Sochi, a tournament report from Heartland Poker Tour Golden Gates and a new casino announcement are the three stories that comprise this edition of our PokerGuru 3-Bet. We begin with online giant PokerStars announcing its next series in Sochi, Russia with their PokerStars Festival which is set to take place in October, then we jump over to the recap of the Heartland Poker Tour Golden Gates that was won by Alex Greenblatt and finally round up with news of MGM announcing a brand-new casino property named MGM Bridgeport in Connecticut.
PokerStars Reveals Sochi Festival Schedule
Online giant PokerStars recently revealed its second PokerStars Live event at Casino Sochi that is slated to begin on October 16 and will run till October 22. After hosting PokerStars Championships Sochi six months back, this time PokerStars makes an appearance in the Russian city with its latest PokerStars Festival.
The series will feature 16 events with the festivities kicking off with the RUB 11,000 (~$180) Megastack with the highlight RUB 66,000 (~$1,100)Event beginning on Oct. 19 and running through till Oct. 22, and adding to the excitement is a whopping RUB 30,000,000 (~$500,000) prize pool guarantee.
Other highlights of the series include a RUB 132,000 (~$2,200) High Roller and a RUB 22,000 (~$370) PokerStars Cup.
Online qualifiers are currently underway at PokerStars and players in select markets can win packages worth $2,500 that includes $564 for airfare and six nights of five-star accommodation at luxurious Sochi Marriott Krasnaya Polyana.
Daily Zoom freeroll qualifiers are also running with the top 50 players advancing to a weekly final on Sunday, where one lucky winner will take down a package and the top 50 will share the $1,000 prize money.
That’s not all as players from selected countries namely Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Ukraine and Uzbekista can qualify for the Main Event through special Zoom freerolls that are running on PokerStars.
HPT Golden Gates: Greenblatt Wins, Kevin "Phwap" Boudreau Fourth
Heartland Poker Tour Golden Gates in Colorado has always been a flagship stop for the poker tour, and the latest edition recently came to a close. The tournament drew 542 entries over the course of four starting flights with the top 63 places making the money. Alex Greenblatt emerged on top and banked the biggest live cash of his career i.e. $179,274.
Colorado based poker community favorite Kevin "Phwap" Boudreau, who had suffered from a horrific health occurrence in 2013, also made the final table. He had sudden bleeding in his brain and was placed in an induced coma that shook the whole poker community. Boudreau came very close to shipping the event but eventually settled for fourth place.
Notables who managed to cash in the event included Chan Pelton, Scott Stanko, David Gutfreund, Kevin Eyster, Nick Jivkov, Josh Turner and Ryan Van Sanford. WSOP bracelet winner Will Givens made it to the final 10 but unfortunately fell as the final table bubble.
Final Table Recap
The eventual champion Greenblatt began the final table as the chip leader but the first elimination came by the hands of Boudreau. He flopped a set of fours in a three-bet pot against Ben Greenberg, who had aces and the latter became the first one to exit.
Boudreau also claimed the next elimination by winning a flip against Evan Ross and Bobby Garcia followed in seventh place after losing all his chips to Izzy Garcia.
Danny Gonzales was the next to go followed by Izzy Garcia who settled for fifth place.
Boudreau led the four-handed battle but was the next to exit the table after a bad beat by the eventual champion Greenblatt. Greenblatt opened and Boudreau called to see the flop . All the chips went in here with Greenblatt aiming for the nut flush with against Boudreau's flopped flush with .. Unfortunately the river completed the nut flush to Greenblatt and he took down the pot.
Matt Livingston then shifted gears and eliminated Fernando Galvan in third place going into the heads-up battle against Greenblatt with a 2-1 chip advantage.
Greenblatt evened things slowly and then ended it all. The last hand of the event saw Greenblatt’s ace-nine against Livingston’s ace-six. The board blanked out completely and Greenblatt secured the title.
Final Table Results (USD)
1. Alex Greenblatt – $179,274
2. Matt Livingston – $110,747
3. Fernando Galvan – $72,583
4. Kevin Boudreau – $50,434
5. Izzy Garcia – $36,650
6. Danny Gonzales – $28,440
7. Bobby Garcia – $23,902
8. Evan Ross – $19,919
9. Ben Greenberg – $15,935
MGM Announces Bridgeport Casino Plan in Connecticut,
Recently, MGM Resorts International announced its plans to build a casino in Bridgeport, Connecticut, which will result in "placing the company at odds with both tribal gaming operators and the gaming plans of Connecticut's state government," according to MassLive.
However, the plans "do not appear to fit within Connecticut's current casino laws" MassLive reported as Governor Dannel Malloy signed an act in July this year that allows only the two federally recognized tribes to build a new gaming facility i.e. Mashantucket Pequots and Mohegans.
Currently, the Mashantucket Pequot tribe owns and operates the Foxwoods Resorts Casino while the Mohegans own and operate the Mohegan Sun property.
The tribes had earlier collaborated to build a new casino in East Windsor that is currently under construction. The casino is scheduled to open in 2018.
MassLive also stated that, "MGM has launched an aggressive legal and public relations campaign" criticizing the East Windsor project.
In June this year, MGM Resorts International already fell on the wrong side of a U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that dismissed MGM's lawsuit against the state claiming a competitive disadvantage that unfairly favored the two tribes. Now that suit "could potentially be relitigated”.
Malloy however has said that the project won't happen without legislative approval, something he doesn't expect to happen given the need for the tribes' support as dictated by the state's compact with them.
"I can't imagine any scenario under which the tribal nations would agree to open up the compact on those grounds," Malloy stated.