The recent $150,000 “Wild Bill Showdown” Blackjack Tournament held June 15th-16th, 2007 at Grand Casino Tunica left many participants shaking their heads in disgust at the way the event was handled by casino staff. The event truly displayed a level of ineptitude and arrogance that somehow managed to exceed this industry’s already normal “Screw the Customer” mentality. Just how did Grand Casino and its staff give themselves this black eye? Well, let us count the ways…
Sunday’s Las Vegas Review Journal included a letter to the editor titled “Champion of all the players … that Harrah’s allows”. The author Bob Nersesian is well-known in advantage gambler circles, as an attorney with an outstanding track record in defending legal players from the often-illegal tactics used by local casinos to harass them.
In a followup to my last post, Brodie has now been allowed back onto Harrah’s properties, and is now competing in the World Series of Poker events. Read the latest couple of posts at his blog Lion Tales.
In his post “I can play” he says that he’s now allowed back, and says also “As usual everyone at Harrah’s was friendly and professional.” Well, I guess he means other than the part where they told him not to set foot in one of their hotels again! Whatever.
I hope he wins a bracelet somewhere along the way at this year’s WSOP. It will make an interesting story for the press to cover if that happens.
It’s not just skilled blackjack players who incur the wrath of the casino powers-that-be. Any player that exhibits evidence of intelligent thought is subject to harassment by casinos. For example, Richard Brodie is a high-stakes player, and god knows he can afford it. As one of the original developers of the software now known as Microsoft Word, he’s got plenty of cash to spend however he would like. But, as you might guess, he’s no dummy. He knows when he has the best of it in the casino. He’s a talented poker player, and he also plays a lot of video poker, at limits that most of us can barely imagine.
I’m just back from a blackjack tournament at the Sheraton Casino in Tunica, Mississippi. The venue was new, but the tournament was a familiar one. The former table games manager from Bally’s Tunica has relocated to the Sheraton, and he brought the popular tournaments from that property along with him.
Well, the first season of the new Ultimate Blackjack Tour is a wrap.
In a long but very exciting week, filming finished up in late October at CBS Studios in Los Angeles. The more than $1 million in prize money was big news, but the real impact of these events will come once they hit TV. A new twist on the standard blackjack tournament format is guaranteed to spice up the game for television audiences.
The James Grosjean and Michael Russo case against Caesars Palace and Griffin Investigations is done, and the jury ruled in favor of Grosjean and Russo, awarding $100,000 in actual damages. Caesars chose to settle with the plaintiffs before the punitive damage portion of the jury deliberations, but Griffin did not. The jury awarded an additional $25,000 to the plaintiffs from defendant Griffin for punitive damages.
The Las Vegas Hilton’s Million Dollar Blackjack II finals were held in May 2004. And, finally, the Travel Channel shows from almost a year ago will air starting this week.
Tune in Wednesday night on the Travel Channel, at both 8 PM and 11 PM Eastern for “Travel Channel Secrets: Million Dollar Blackjack Tournament: Semifinals”. The one hour show will cover all three of the semifinal tables from the Hilton event. Two players from the six on each of these tables advance to the finals where first place is a million in cash. (Look for me among the participants. I think I’m in the second match shown.)