The Venetian Dilemma

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By Robert “Umberto” Wiechmann

Welcome back everybody to the wonderful world of poker. Let’s move today’s topic off the felt and talk about the elephant in the room so to speak, Sheldon Adelson.

As a local Las Vegas grinder I appreciate all the opportunities this city provides to play poker, and one of those opportunities as I mentioned in my previous article is staying home to play on wsop.com. I believe Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware are currently the only states that allow legal and regulated online poker but nationally online poker dried up with the shutdowns of Pokerstars and Full Tilt Poker in 2011. One of the major opponents and financiers to prevent online poker is our own local casino mogul Sheldon Adelson. Mr. Adelson is also one of the coveted billionaires courted by GOP Presidential candidates. Putting national politics aside, it’s a shame that so many poker players have had to move out of the country just to continue their job and I support their right to play. Sheldon Adelson’s opposition to online poker is very curious and hypocritical as he is chairman and CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corporation which includes the Venetian and Palazzo hotels and casinos. As a poker player I have played cash and tournaments at the Venetian in the past but have made a conscious effort not to patronize this poker room over the last couple of years.

This brings me to my dilemma. Since the WSOP ended in July, the local poker tournament series have dried up until the currently running Venetian Deepstacks series. The upcoming $250 buyin/$150k prizepool tournament is very appealing. As a poker player we are always looking for value and this provides it. While there are always daily tournaments, lets face it the Friday night tourney at the Orleans is just not going to generate a $150k prizepool ever. My dilemma is by not playing am I only hurting myself. Sheldon Adelson will still be a multi-billionaire in the morning but its not everyday I get to play for a high 5 figure score for just $250. We all support businesses that might not agree with our own moral or political views if we really did the research on everybody. In fact, I would probably never have any clothes or material things if I didn’t buy anything made in China. So I pose the question to play or not to play? I would love any feedback or comments and I can be reached on twitter @rewiech. Until we talk again, go out and get that $.

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