Michael Jordan Takes on Sportsbetting Role and Live Tournament Series Poker Returns

Michael Jordan joining fantasy sports giant DraftKings, a Steve Wynn defamation lawsuit, and the Venetian launching the first post-COVID live tournament series dominate this weeks industry headlines…

By: Andrew Burnett

Live poker tournament series returns to Vegas

We’ll kick off with the poker news, and that is dominated by Sheldon Adelson’s Venetian Resort Las Vegas decision to run a 32-tournament series this month.

The $400k Deepstack Poker Showdown Series is the first chance for fans of live poker to attempt a return to normality in a COVID-19-dominated world.

The cardroom has been running one-day tournaments since re-opening, but this will be a clear step up, although Venetian tournament director Tommy LaRosa was quick to point out the safety aspects.

He told CardPlayer magazine: “By beginning with single-table tournaments and then moving to multi-table tournaments, the process has allowed us to refine our protocols. That included installing plexiglass dividers at each table, allowing for eight-handed play as well as sanitizing tables, chairs, chips, dividers”, and LaRosa emphasised that, “All patrons must wear masks regardless of the plexiglass dividers being installed.”

The Showdown Series runs until September 27th with the flagship finale being a $100k GTD, $400 buy-in NLHE Showdown from September 23rd to 27th.

Wynn Defamation lawsuit hits new hurdle

Disgraced Wynn Resorts CEO Steve Wynn this week saw his defamation lawsuit face a setback, the Nevada Supreme Court siding with a former employee.

As we reported last year, Wynn has been facing trouble from multiple directions following serious sexual impropriety allegations.

Many of them stemmed from a 2018 Wall Street Journal article in which Jorgen Nielsen claimed Wynn had been sexually harassing employees for decades.

Wynn’s defamation lawsuit describes Nielsen as a “disgruntled former employee” who “harbors a personal animus, dislike, and anger toward Mr. Wynn,” according to the LVRJ.

The Nevada Supreme Court, however, sided with Nielsen this week, stating: “Nielsen showed that his communication was made in direct connection with an issue of public interest in a public forum, and was truthful or made without knowledge of its falsehood.”

Michael Jordan takes on ‘special advisor’ role for DraftKings

Chicago Bulls and all-round NBA legend Michael Jordan has joined fantasy sports betting giants DraftKings as a special advisor, immediately boosting the company’s share price.

Jordan will receive an ‘undisclosed equity stake’ in exchange for “providing guidance and strategic advice…on key business initiatives," according to press reports.

The retired star, who won six MVP awards and six championships during his playing career, is now the principal owner of North Carolina-based NBA team, the Charlotte Hornets.

5Dimes in US customer account suspension mystery

The sportsbetting firm 5Dimes, widely known because of the 2018 murder of its founder William Sean Creighton – known as 5DimesTony – has apparently suspended relations with its US-based customers.

The Costa Rica-based sportsbook notified its customers that as of September 21st it would ‘no longer be accepting bets from American sports bettors for an unnamed period of time’, according to CardPlayer magazine.

However, questions have been raised about the unexpected suspension, with several customers claiming they have simply been switched to what may well just be a ‘skin’.

‘Multiple 5Dimes customers have since had their open futures bets and accounts transferred to a more obscure offshore site called Betanysports,’ according to legalsportsreport.com.

They report that, ‘Suspiciously, the site layout, prices and bet options all look identical to 5Dimes’ and state that ‘betanysports is also based in Costa Rica and a “sister site” to 5Dimes.’

Founder and owner, William Sean ‘5DimesTony’ Creighton, was abducted and murdered back in 2018, his body found a year later – a dozen people arrested including two transport police officers.

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