As we head into this year’s Las Vegas summer poker season, poker continues apace here in Portland (and Oregon).
On May 5th at noon, the Portland Meadows Poker Room hosts a $30K GTD NLHE Survivor tournament for its annual Kentucky Derby celebrationwith a buyin of $225.There’s no rebuy and no addon. The flyer says the tournament will end “when there is exactly 10% of the field remaining”, which—depending on rounding—would mean everyone who gets paid gets over $2,200, ten times the buyin.
The next Saturday, May 12th at noon, the Final Table Poker Club is putting on another $50K GTD NLHE tournament with a $160 buyin, $160 live rebuy, and $80 addon. Check their website for more info.
Reports are that action at The Game is just as juicy as ever, keep an eye on Rialto and Claudia’s daily action, and even Aces (inside BC’s Restaurant, 2433 SE Powell, call 503-719-7399) is back with daily tournaments at noon and 6pm Monday through Saturday.
Of note:Ontario Poker Roomhas a $550 tournament scheduled for 26 May that pays out $10K to 1 out of 20 players. $15 of each entry is the door fee, $15 goes to the dealers, and $20 is for all you can eat food.
A discussion during last night’s home game (I busted on the bubble) about the number of times it was necessary to shuffle a deck of cards to achieve randomness led me to a little research.
It was the general consensus at the table that seven was the correct number of shuffles, I had never really paid much attention to it, having only managed to overcome a little physical abnormality (it’s why I’m the Poker Mutant) to manage an awkward shuffle in recent years. But even though there was agreement about the number, the particulars of whether it mattered that the deck had been used in a hand or was fresh out of a new pack posed some question, and was it seven professional riffles, a machine shuffle, or just some guys around a folding card table-type shuffles?
On the first, I was pretty sure that the answer was no. Random is random, and if a data set can be considered random , it should make no difference how orderly it was before randomization.
As to the other, I found an article in the New York Timesfrom nearly thirty years ago, about a paper by Drs. Dave Bayer (mathematics and computer science, Columbia) and Persi Diaconis (mathematics and statistics, Harvard as well as a magician), who used observation of card games and computer simulations to determine the optimum amount of shuffling required for single- and multiple-deck card games (like blackjack).
By saying that the deck is completely mixed after seven shuffles, Dr. Diaconis and Dr. Bayer mean that every arrangement of the 52 cards is equally likely or that any card is as likely to be in one place as in another.
The cards do get more and more randomly mixed if a person keeps on shuffling more than seven times, but seven shuffles is a transition point, the first time that randomness is close. Additional shuffles do not appreciably alter things.
In the meantime, he also worked on ”perfect shuffles,” those that exactly interlace the cards. Almost no one except a magician can do perfect shuffles every time. But Dr. Diaconis showed several years ago that if a person actually does perfect shuffles, the cards would never be thoroughly mixed. He derived a mathematical proof showing that if a deck is perfectly shuffled eight times, the cards will be in the same order as they were before the shuffling.
You’ve probably already been planning your trips to Las Vegas for the summer, but if you haven’t it’s time to get your butt in gear because the 2018 World Series of Poker is less than 40 days away, and it’s less than a month to the start of the Venetian Deepstack Extravaganza III. Just a reminder about one of the best tools out there.
Belgian WSOP Main Event November Niner and tournament director Kenny Hallaert has been producing a version of this spreadsheet for years. It includes all of the major series: WSOP, Venetian, Planet Hollywood, Aria, Wynn, Bellagio, Golden Nugget, and Binoins. Events are organized by day (starting with 14 May and running through 29 July). There are tabs for non-NLHE tournaments and breakdowns for rake.
Liz Tedder was in a 3-way chop at the Wildhorse Spring Poker Round Up Main Event, then heads-up for $1K and the bracelet just a few days after sending us this picture!
I was going to write a whiny post about how I blew it in the High Roller calling off my stack on a river where I knew my flopped set of aces had been beat (hence the great shot from Liz Tedder of the Bad Beat Wheel of Misfortune™ that I got to spin—hitting the hand sanitizer just to rub things in) but long-time friend of the blog Brad Press pointed out—contrary to what I’d seen earlier in the week—the results from the series were being posted on theWildhorse web site. (Brad’s a perceptive guy, he was actually the very first person to approach me at a tournament about the blog).
Anyway, just for convenience, I’m reposting results here. Events 1–8 are up, with the exception of the #7, the Big O, which are linked to #8 at the time I’m writing this.
For the uninitiated, at Wildhorse, you get to spin the Wheel of Misfortune when your aces or kings are cracked in a tournament—even if you aren’t knocked out. Most of the prizes are tokens—the wheel’s running every few minutes during the larger tournaments—but you can win a Pendleton blanket or so I’ve heard.
It’s probably a little tough to remember, but there was a time when every Tom, Dick, and Harriet didn’t have their own poker tournament series.
Ten years ago, the Wildhorse Poker Round Ups were huge, and even though the Spring edition is the middle child to the Fall and baby Summer series, the Main Event in 2008 had a prize pool of $300,000 and a buyin of $1K. That’s the High Roller buyin these days.
I wasn’t a regular at Wildhorse back then (heck, I’m not a regular there now, the first time I cashed in a tournament there was last fall), so I can’t claim to know the factors in play, but there was this recession thing that started in the fall of 2008, Then there was Black Friday—where money got locked up for players on PokerStars and Full Tilt—just before the start of the 2011 Spring series.
Here’s a little chart for select events from 2008–2017, showing the winner, buyin, number of entries, and prize pool. Over the years the series schedule has changed, with many events moving from day to day between two weekends. Some events have stayed more or less untouched, others have disappeared completely (Ladies?). Soak in the info and good luck next week in Pendleton!
* Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo was substituted for HORSE in 2011; Limit Hold’em replaced HORSE in 2012. † In 2008, the Ladies event was a stop on the Ladies International Poker Series tour. ‡ The 2014 Seniors entry number was reported as 299 but that does not match with the prize pool.