Calls to Boycott Venetian Poker Room over Rake Grab Claims

11 months ago
Calls to Boycott Venetian Poker Room over Rake Grab Claims
21 Sep

The Venetian Poker Room in Las Vegas has been fiercely criticised for its latest tournament series, in which any buy-in money paid above a certain amount goes straight to the cardroom rather than players.

As popular poker vlogger Jeff Boski points out, the small print for the tournament series states:

“100% of all funds collected will go to meet the $150,000 Total Prize Pool. Any funds collected above and beyond the total prize pool will be the sole property of The Venetian Poker Room.”

That very unusual approach has been almost unanimously condemned, the maths showing that if 1200 players entered across the six opening flights, the house would be taking a whopping 50% rake.

Phil Galfond tweeted:

"$150k prize pool whether they go over or under?! I suggest @VenetianPoker market this innovative tournament format as a “Super Guarantee”.

Fellow highstakes pro Ben Lamb said of the simultaneous min/max guarantee: "This is one of the dumbest things I’ve seen in poker", while Doug Polk went even further and called for a boycott of the Venetian…

 The Sheldon Adelson-owned properties pokerroom have apparently modelled their Lucky Shot Poker Series and Drawing events on non-poker casino tournaments.

Included in the series is a $52,000 ‘lottery’, the ‘drawing’ in the series’ name – every $250 in buy-ins paid by a player giving them one ticket to the prize draw.

A Venetian PR spokesperson told PokerNews’ Valerie Cross this week:

“The tournament [series] is designed so that the Venetian funds $225,000 in total prizes, regardless of how many players join. This is similar to how other table and slot tournaments are conducted.”

The Venetian claim that the Lucky Shot format is not planned to replace their other poker offerings, explaining:

“This new format is in addition to our other successful poker tournaments which are geared to a more seasoned player, like our DeepStack Poker Series.”

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Andrew from Edinburgh, Scotland, is a professional journalist, international-titled chess master, and avid poker player.Read more


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