MGM launches East Coast Poker Tour

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The MGM Resorts East Coast Poker Tour features events at MGM National Harbor, MGM Springfield and Borgata. Qualify for the tour leaderboard Feb. 5-Aug. 24.

The leaderboard’s top 90 receive entry into the Borgata Fall Poker Open $2M guarantee championship Nov. 15-20.

MGM NATIONAL HARBOR: The Potomac Poker Open is going to run biannually. The next one will be Feb. 5-17 and will be called the Potomac Winter Open, with $1M-plus in guarantees. There will be 14 events, including the $500K guarantee opener and $500K guarantee main event.

DC CHARITY POKER: Events for the World Series of DC Poker kicked off Jan. 26 with the first of three deepstack tournaments. The series continues Feb. 1 and the main event is Feb. 9. For details, go to allinenterprises.org/upcomingevents.

Delaware

DELAWARE PARK: The Presidents Day weekend tournament series begins Feb. 14 with a $65 tourney that sports a $2.5K guarantee. Feb. 15 is a $120 event with a $7.5K guarantee; Feb. 16 is $200 with a $10K guarantee, and Feb. 17 costs $150 for another $10K guarantee.

As for tournament promotions, one entry into the raffle will be given at the time of registration. Drawings take place Sunday at noon for cash prizes. There’s also a $1.5K weekly tournament leaderboard and 5K bonus chips for preregistration.

Philadelphia

PARX EAST: The Big Stax series runs Feb. 5-26. The $300, $500 and $1,100 events will be Feb. 5, 13,and 21, respectively. There will be additional events throughout the month, too, so see the Parx website for details. 

Maine

HOLLYWOOD CASINO BANGOR: The state’s lone poker room offers progressive high hands and a royal-flush jackpot.  

Rhode Island

TWIN RIVER CASINO: Just outside Providence, the state’s only live room has 23 tables, featuring $1-$2, $2-$5 and $5-$10 NLHE.

Connecticut

FOXWOODS RESORT CASINO: The Winter Deep Freeze Challenge is Feb. 5-10. Event 1 is the $600 Blizzard stack with a $100K guarantee and 100K stacks.  The $1,200 championship has two starting flights Feb. 8 (11 a.m. and 4 p.m.). Players start with 40K chips and 40-minute blinds. This event has a $150K guarantee.  Last year, Robert Skinner and David Stefanski chopped the main, each winning $47K-plus. 

Looking ahead, the Foxwoods Poker Classic is March 6-23. 

MOHEGAN SUN: High hands are paid every day in cash games. Thursdays feature an action-packed $8-$16 HORSE game. Also, a variety of tournaments run daily, highlighted by the $120 Tuesday event at 6 p.m. with a $10K guarantee.

New York

Ben Chan from New York won $21K in the $250 opening event of the Superstacks Series in December at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, N.Y. This first-place finish is only his second career cash. 

Event 4 also had a $75K guarantee as the final seven players agreed on a chop with each player earning $8,363. Fady Khabbaz from Syracuse had the most chips and took home the trophy. Fady has $200K-plus in career earnings. 

Promotions include the Big Game Giveaway on Feb. 2. The first giveaway period begins at 11 a.m. and the high hand will be paid $500 at noon. Then $250 high hands will be awarded every half-hour 12:30-5 p.m. The $250 payouts increase to every 20 minutes until 11 p.m. 

Also, there will be a $100 drawing for every TD, $49 for every field goal and $100 for every safety. 

RIVERS SCHENECTADY: The Holiday Deepstack series runs Feb. 15-17. All events start with 25K chips and 30-minute blinds. Event 1 is a $260 black-chip bounty, where you earn $100 for every player you eliminate. 

Event 2 (Feb. 16) is a $240 deepstack survivor with 10 percent of the field each winning $2K. The series concludes with the $260 event Feb. 17. 

For cash-game players, there will be $130K given away in high hands and hot-seat promotions this month. 

SENECA NIAGARA: There will be a couples tourney Feb. 14 at 6 p.m. The buy-in for a couple is $120. Teams get 15K chips and 15-minute levels. A $10 optional add-on will get you 5K more in chips. Late entry and re-entry allowed for four levels. Team members will switch out every level. 

In promotions, flop a royal flush and get paid $1K. Win $500 if you hit it on the turn and $250 on the river. On Saturdays (1-11 p.m.), the high hand of the hour could  win $1K. 

SENECA SALAMANCA: Every Thursday at 6 p.m. is a $90 deepstack. Players start with 8K chips and 20-minute levels, but you can get 2K more chips for a $10 optional add-on. And if you register by 5:30, you’ll get another 500. 

The $150 First Friday of the Month event is Feb. 7. You’ll start with 15K chips and 20-minute levels. Late and re-entry will be allowed through four levels. 

Massachusetts

ENCORE BOSTON HARBOR: The property’s first multiday tournament concluded Dec. 29 and was a huge success. The $600 event had a $250K guarantee. With 1,378 entries over three starting flights, the guarantee was almost tripled. The prize pool was $723K-plus. After the final four players agreed on a chop, William MacGregor won the trophy and $77K.

MGM SPRINGFIELD: There are daily high hands, splash pots and royal jackpots. Thursday at 6 p.m., the room features a popular $5-$10 NLHE game with a $500 min. buy-in and no max. Be sure to read about the East Coast Poker Tour on Page 26. Also, looking ahead, the Armory Classic will run Aug. 12-24.

Meet Frank Napomoceno

Frank Napomoceno has 15-plus years’ experience working in poker and is the poker room supervisor at Twin River Casino in Lincoln, R.I.

How’d you got started in poker and what brought you to Twin River? I started playing poker at a young age; my family played and I would join them. I took a job as a craps dealer at Mohegan Sun and soon found out that they were going to be opening a poker room and offering poker classes. I transferred into the poker room as a dealer and then worked my way up from there eventually to a full-time floor. Twin River opened a few years ago and was looking for experienced poker supervisors. I took the position and have been there since.

Do you still play? I enjoy playing poker and play cash games at other casinos or games with my friends. Occasionally, I will take part in tournaments. I enjoy limit poker the most, but recently have played more $1-$2 and $2-$5 no-limit.

You work at Rhode Island’s only poker room. What can players expect when they play at Twin River? They can expect a good cash-game poker room. The limits and buy-ins tend to be lower than other poker rooms and it attracts many recreational players from the surrounding areas. At Twin River, we try to make it as convenient as possible for the players.

What’s your favorite part about being a poker room supervisor? My favorite part … is interacting with all the different players who I have worked and played with over the years. I worked at both Connecticut casinos and as a result, I know a lot of the poker community in our area. Twin River is still a newer poker room and many of the employees here learned poker at Twin River. I enjoy helping them expand their poker knowledge, as I am passionate about the game. Some of them I had the privilege of teaching and have since become exceptional dealers. — Jon Maclellan