New Jersey may have the largest online poker market in the US, but compared to international markets—even the ring-fenced markets in European states—player liquidity has been abysmal. Experts have debated various ways to turn things around, but one of the most interesting options I’ve come across has been the addition of fast-fold poker games.

New Jersey needs Fast-Fold PokerThe liquidity of an online poker room relates to the average number of players actively playing on the site. There are two important types of liquidity to be considered.

First, we have total liquidity, which designates the total number of players online at any given time, and then there’s game liquidity, which indicates player activity at specific game types/stakes.

The addition of fast-fold poker games would clearly have no effect on total liquidity, unless there happens to be a large amount of poker fans in the Garden States who are die-hard fans of the fast-fold genre and nothing else. That’s unlikely, of course. But for game liquidity, the results could be impressive.

The way fast-fold poker works, players are dropped into a pool of tables, rather than selecting the specific table they want to play at. Each time they fold a hand, they are immediately whisked away to another table and dealt into a new hand. As such, it can appear that a group of, say 12 tables, is actively entertaining as many as 100 players, despite their only be 50 players in the hunt.

NJ’s Fast-Fold Poker Dilemma

One problem is that these figures are merely fictional; a mirage of higher player volume to mask the reality of nadir liquidity. But if enough interested poker players see what appears to be a larger volume of players on the networks, it could attract additional players to the tables, effectively boosting total liquidity.

In the realm of land-based casinos, when you walk into a small poker room and see just a one or two tables housing a few players, it doesn’t pose an encouraging atmosphere for others to join in. Walk into a major casino and you’re likely to find a line of players waiting for an open seat.

New Jersey’s online poker sites are comparable to those ‘small poker rooms’. But if they can create the illusion of being comparable to a ‘major poker room’, perhaps it could start to turn things around.

The other problem—a much bigger one in the greater scheme of things—is that fast-fold poker is not authorized in the Garden State. Regulators would have to amend the current iGaming framework to permit operators to integrate fast-fold games. And unfortunately, there just isn’t enough evidence that incorporating such games would have a viable impact on the market for them to consider it at this time.

How to Increase Game Liquidity Now

A more practical solution—one that wouldn’t require approval from the NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement—would be to remove some of the stakes currently offered for NLHE games. If the range of stakes were cut in half, it would essentially force players to group together on the available tables.

For instance, if one player only patriciates at $0.05/$0.10 NLHE, but that level were to be removed, he might have to choose between downgrading to $0.01/$0.02, or upgrading to $0.10/$0.25. Either way, he would be merging into an existing group of players who already enjoy those stakes, thereby increasing the game liquidity.


The spring and summer months have always been slow periods for the global internet poker economy, but some regions—particularly New Jersey—have clearly struggling more than others. For the month of June 2015, the NJ online poker market suffered the lowest yield since the state introduced regulation in 2013.

NJ Online Poker Revenue Down Again in JuneLast month, the Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) reported that NJ online poker operators harvested just $1.83 million. That figure represents a 46.8% drop compared to the state’s all-time high of $3.44 million generated in January 2014.

Diminishing player traffic—and consequently, revenue—is expected around this time of year. The iPoker industry endures a seasonal drop in activity all over the world. But the NJ online poker market has more reason for concern when comparing last month’s revenue to that of a year ago. June 2015 bears a 10% decrease compared to the same month’s figures in 2014.

In fact, aside from the relatively steady months of February and March, New Jersey has witnessed a perpetual month over month decline in internet poker revenue.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, regulators in the Garden State are enjoying a continuous boost from the online casino market. That division nearly struck 10-figures in June, reaping $9.83 million; a staggering 83.38% more than NJ online poker sites.

NJ Online Poker Market’s Leaders

There is some confusion among which network actually leads the NJ online poker market. If we go by revenue, the Party Borgata Network is at the forefront. Based on cash game traffic numbers from tracking website PokerScout, however, it’s WSOP/888 that leads the pack.

There are only two internet poker networks operating four sites in the Garden State. Party Borgata operates and, while Caesars Interactive’s and share they’re players on WSOP/888.

When comparing NJ online poker revenue, Party Borgata is on top with 51.8% of the market share, while WSOP/888 follows right behind with 48.2%. In terms of traffic however, WSOP/888 appears to have a significant lead of 170 average cash game players, compared to just 110 on Party Borgata. One would have to surmise that Party Borgata is drawing more tournament traffic, and/or higher stakes players to the virtual felt.

NJ Online Poker / Casino Markets Combined

When balancing the books for both NJ online poker and casino markets in June, Party/Borgata remained on top by claiming 29.6% of the Garden State’s overall iGaming market share. Caesar’s Interactive came in second with 22.6%. Tropicana and Golden Nugget, which operate online casinos only, trailed close behind with 21.95% and 21.64% respectively. Another casino-only operator, Resorts’ grade was negligible, managing to grasp just 3.43%.

New Jersey Still Awaiting PokerStars Entry

At this point, there’s only one thing that can truly turn the NJ online poker market around, and that’s the eventual introduction of PokerStars. The world’s largest internet poker site, owned by Amaya Gaming, is still waiting for a ruling from state regulators on whether a license will be granted, and according to Amaya CEO David Baazov, it could happen as early as Fall 2015.

PokerStars entry should have an immense impact on the Garden State, raising awareness ten-fold and giving existing operators significant reason to become more competitive with their promotions and tournament offerings.

It’s also worth noting that Amaya Gaming is currently in negotiations to acquire and its many interactive gaming assets, including its operations in New Jersey.

Update: Confirmed this morning, July 17, 2015, 888 Holdings has won the bid for, agreeing to a $1.4 billion buyout of the company and all of its assets.

Online poker has been a legally regulated activity in the state of Nevada for two years now. Just recently, an interstate compact to share liquidity between players in Nevada and Delaware was implemented. Now, via AB 414, the state is taking steps to ensure that online poker is the only form of internet gaming shared between players across state lines.

AB 414 online poker only interstate compacts NevadaOn Friday, members of the Nevada Assembly met to discuss AB 414, a legislative measure scripted to prohibit shared liquidity compacts with other states for the purpose of any online gambling activity outside of poker.

AB 414, backed by casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, was only introduced a month ago on March 19, and has moved rapidly through state legislature. It was passed by a slim margin of 23 to 17, with 2 excused from the vote.

The fate of the interstate compact measure is now in the hands of the Senate. It received its first reading in the Senate Committee on April 20 and was referred to the Committee on Judiciary. The deadline to pass the bill is May 15, 2015.

AB 414 and Online Poker in Nevada

Nevada chose to only legalize interactive peer-to-peer games (i.e. poker) when pressing for internet gaming regulation. Delaware and New Jersey took a different route, having authorized both online poker and house-banked casino games like blackjack, roulette, video poker and slots.

In early 2013, Nevada and Delaware came together in agreement on a shared liquidity deal that would see their online poker players merged into a single, networked player pool across all 888-powered operators, which include all three of Delaware’s authorized gaming sites (, and and Nevada’s New Jersey has chosen to go it alone, at least for the time being, declining to share liquidity with any other states.

Of worthy note, the interstate compact signed by the governors of Nevada and Delaware took more than a year to go into effect. During all that time, no bill to prevent shared liquidity across internet house-banked games was introduced. It wasn’t until mere days before player pooling became a reality on March 24 that the measure surfaced.

Adelson’s Crusade to Stop Online Gambling

As for why Sheldon Adelson is has been so adamant about in his support of AB 414 and the need to hold interstate compacts to online poker only remains a bit of a mystery. As one reporter for CardPlayer put it, he may be “hedging his bets”.

Though not for lack of effort, the billionaire CEO of Las Vegas Sands Corp (LVS) has thus far been unable to reach his ultimate goal of prohibiting all forms of online gambling in the US. He’s signed countless checks of untold value, all thrown at politicians and organizations willing to support his cause. Currently, his primary focus is lobbying for the passage of a federal bill known as the Restoration of America’s Wire Act. If passed, RAWA would effectively criminalize any and all forms of internet gambling, shutting down iGaming markets in Delaware, Nevada and New Jersey, as well as the online lottery sales in four other states.

It’s also worth mentioning that Nevada permits mobile betting within authorized casinos; something Mr. Adelson has taken full advantage of, despite his outward aversion to online gambling. For example, a guest of the LVS-owned Venetian Hotel can log into the casino’s mobile betting site and place wagers on sporting events, so long as the individual is physically located within the confines of the property at the time the bet is placed.

AB 414 will not affect property-restricted mobile betting, and Adelson doesn’t seem to mind profiting from that internet gambling niche one bit.

Calling all online poker players in the Garden State: The New Jersey Championship of Online Poker (NJCOP II) has returned! The 34-event series will kick off on Thursday, April 16 and runs through Sunday, April 26, guaranteeing $1,000,000 throughout.

NJCOP II will feature a wide array of online poker variations with buy-ins to accommodate all levels of play. Everything from NL Holdem and PL Omaha, to 7 Card Stud, Bounty Tournaments and Deepstacks are on the schedule, with buy-ins ranging from $50 to $1,000.

New Jersey Championship of Online Poker NJCOP II

The New Jersey Championship of Online Poker is opening with a Players Choice event on April 16 at 6:00pm ET. Registration costs $100 and a minimum $20k is guaranteed. Then at 7:00pm is Event #2, $150 PLO 6 Max with $10k up for grabs.

The NJCOP II continues from there with 2 events on the schedule every weekday and 4 events each Saturday. On Sundays, the roster increases to 7 tournaments, including a $5 Mega Satellite to the NJCOP II Main Event on April 19 and 26 at 3:30pm. Each satellite offers rebuys and guarantees 25 seats to the Main Event.

The Second edition of the New Jersey Championship of Online Poker will play out Event #30 – the Main Event – on Sunday, April 26 at 5:00pm. The direct buy-in is $200, and the winners are promised a slice of the NJCOP II’s largest single-event prize pool, $150,000.

Also of interest will be two high roller events, #11 and #32, likewise to be played out on their respective Sundays. The first features a $1,000 buy-in and a standard NLHE structure with $50,000 GTD. The second also incurs a $1,000 buy-in, but is listed as “NLHE Slow” and guarantees $75,000.

Click here to see the Full Schedule of 2015 New Jersey Championship of Online Poker.

NJCOP II Notice for Mac & Mobile Players

A special notice has been posted on Borgata Poker and PartyPoker NJ in regards to users logging in to the online poker site from a Mac or mobile device. Note that certain poker variants cannot be played on Mac and/or mobile. Please see the chart below for NJCOP II events that can and cannot be played on specific operating systems and devices.

Poker Game Type PC Download PC Java Mobile Device Mac OS
Stud Games Yes Yes No No
Omaha Games Yes Yes No Yes
Heads-Up Games Yes Yes Yes No
Bounty Tournaments Yes Yes No Yes


About the New Jersey Championship of Online Poker

The New Jersey Championship of Online Poker is hosted by the Party Borgata Network, meaning that members of Borgata Poker and PartyPoker NJ will have dual access to all NJCOP II events. All legal-age poker players located in the state of New Jersey are welcome to participate. A verified account with either online poker room is required.

In its inaugural debut last year, the New Jersey Championship of Online Poker featured just 15 events, and guaranteed $600,000. The significant growth of the NJCOP II schedule, with more than twice as many events and the overall guarantee nearly doubled, goes to show just how well the 15 month old iGmaing market is developing in the Garden State.

The online poker and casino gambling revenue report for February 2015 has been released by the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement. While it’s clear that internet poker is on an alarming decline compared to last year’s results, it’s also worth noting that, despite the cash game traffic results, the Party Borgata poker network is still the leader in New Jersey.

Party Borgata Poker Network leads WSOP/888 in New JerseyWhen and 888Poker teamed up in January by pooling a portion of their player bases across certain cash games and tournaments, it appeared that the newly formed WSOP / 888 network was primed to take over the top spot in New Jersey’s online poker market.

According to current statistics from traffic tracking website PokerScout, WSOP/888 is averaging 200 players at the cash tables over a 7 day period, while the Party Borgata poker network is averaging only 150. That information would lead many to believe that WSOP / 888 would easily overtake the market as the #1 gross revenue generator in the Garden State. But the latest revenue reports indicate otherwise.

The NJ DGE’s revenue report shows that PartyPoker and Borgata Poker (collectively the Party Borgata Network) reaped $1,103,501 from interactive peer-to-peer gaming (i.e. online poker rake and tournaments fees). Caesars Interactive Entertainment, which operates as the license holder for and 888Poker, generated $942,154.

Together, New Jersey’s online poker market produced $2,045,655, with Party Borgata owning 53.94% of the market share. WSOP / 888 made up for the remaining 46.06%. In terms of cash game traffic, though, the numbers look quite different, with WSOP / 888 leading at 57.14% of the market share, and the Party Borgata poker network trailing with 42.86%.

How Party Borgata Poker Network retains #1 Rank

There are only two reasons why Party Borgata would remain on top, despite having lower cash game traffic than its sole network rival in New Jersey. The most likely cause would be a stronger interest from the online poker community in Party Borgata’s tournament schedule.

The network has a larger selection of well-structured tournaments that offer higher guaranteed prize pools than WSOP / 888, and the majority of them are networked across both PartyPoker and Borgata Poker. WSOP and 888 only chose to network a small number of their largest weekly guarantees, which are still collectively lower than those presented by Party Borgata. The highest Sunday GTD at WSOP / 888 generally fluctuates between $25k and $35k, while Party Borgata offers a minimum Sunday $50k GTD, often increased to $100k GTD.

The only other factor that could cause such a seemingly opposing result in New Jersey’s online poker leadership is the value of the players taking part at the cash tables. If PartyPoker and Borgata Poker are drawing more high volume, high stakes players than WSOP / 888, it would reason that the network would collect more from cash game rake than their competitor, despite having the lower traffic numbers.

Revenue Reports Good & Bad News for New Jersey

When comparing February’s online poker revenue to January 2015, the numbers don’t look good at first. Jan 2015 brought in $2,299,426 ($1,283,746 or 55.83% from Party Borgata, $1,015,680 or 44.17% from WSOP / 888). In Feb 2015, the total was down 11% to $2,045,655.

However, if we negate the fact that February had 3 less days than January, calculating the daily average instead, the results look more like this: $74,175 per day in January, $73,059 per day in February. That equates to a mere 1.5% differential, and should be a lot easier for New Jersey regulators to swallow.

Where the largest discrepancy lies is the comparison between February 2015 and February 2014. Last year at this time, the Garden State’s online poker revenue totaled $3,109,203. Overall, the internet poker market has seen a disturbing decline of 28.3% in year-over-year results.

On a positive note, online casino revenue in New Jersey is still running strong, accounting for approximately 4x more than online poker. When both online poker and casino revenues are combined, the DGE reported a total internet gaming win of $10.4 million in February 2015, up 0.9% from $10.3 million in February 2014.

Lots of people around the world have experienced great success playing real money card games over the internet. Online poker players rake in colossal tournament prizes every week, and online casino jackpots are struck on a pretty regular basis. But narrow the playing field to New Jersey, where a legally regulated iGaming market has only been established for about 15 months, and enormous prizes don’t make the headlines nearly so often.

New Jersey online gamblers dealt $1.5mm royal flushNow, the Garden State is abuzz with the news that one of their own—an online gambler from Union County—has struck it rich. The lucky player, who has chosen to maintain his anonymity, was playing a popular game known as Let It Ride at when a monumental payout of $1.5 million occurred.

It was February 14th, Valentine’s Day, when the online gambler from Union County made three huge bets that will change his life forever. Let It Ride is like an online poker game, but the player is not competing against any other players. Instead, their goal is to try and achieve the best possible 5-card poker hand. The higher the hand ranks, the higher the payout grows.

Let It Ride consists of three betting rounds. The player makes an initial bet before receiving the first 3 cards. There are then two more betting rounds, one prior to being dealt each of the last two cards. There’s also an optional side bet called 3-Card Bonus that can be placed before the hand starts.

According to Betfair Casino, the lucky New Jersey man bet $500 on each betting round, and another $500 on the side bet. By the time all the cards fell, he found himself holding the most improbable poker hand of all – the Royal Flush – which pays 1000-to-1 on each of the hand’s bets, plus 40-to-1 on side bets.

Get your calculators out ladies and gentlemen and you’ll find that the grand total for all those perfectly timed bets is a whopping $1,522,000.

Online Gambler “Shocked” by Royal Flush Win

When asked about how the life-altering win came about, the online gambler responded. “I first heard of on a television commercial where they were offering a generous bonus for first time sign ups.” He then told the events of that fateful evening.

“I was playing one night for about two hours . . . and I was ready to end my night of play and I was dealt Queen, Jack, and 10 of Diamonds. Great! I have a mini straight flush! To my amazement I was dealt the King and Ace of Diamonds! A Royal Flush! Really! I was in total shock! Not my first royal either and yes, still in shock! Then I realized it was a $1,522,000 payout! NOW I WAS IN SHOCK! I thought it was a dream!” he exclaimed. “This is why I love playing and will only be playing on because the site lets you play and in turn gives you a fair chance to win!”

“It’s always exciting when a player hits a big win,” expressed Don Ryan, the General Manager for in New Jersey. “We’re thrilled to be a part of U.S. online gaming history and to be able to provide generous bonuses, high payouts, and a secure and fair online gaming experience to our players in New Jersey for years to come.”

Prior to that massive 7-figure win, the largest single payout to any New Jersey online gambler was $1,334,641.22. That enormous prize was delivered to Cathy Ruela of Morris Plains, NJ while she was playing the Millionaire Genie progressive slot at on November 6, 2014.


New Jersey’s online gambling market has been active for 15 months now, and after consistent reports of sluggish growth, it seems the industry’s revenue generation is finally staying on a northbound track. For the second month in a row, the interactive gaming win is up, including a substantial boost in online poker revenue.

nj-online-poker-revenueFor the month of January 2015, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement (DGE) reported a total internet gaming win of $11,567,337. That figure translates to an 8% increase, up from $10,736,118 in December’s report. Of that, $9,267,911 came from the state’s online casino operators, while the other $2,299,426 was derived from peer-to-peer gaming (i.e. online poker operations).

Clearly, casino style gambling is more popular – and more profitable – than online poker games, but this month’s unwritten award for rate of growth goes to the latter. Internet casino win rose 6.38%, while online poker revenue grew 10.45% month over month.

Party Borgata Network leads in Online Poker Revenue

There are currently four online poker operators pilfering their virtual wares in New Jersey – Party Poker NJ, Borgata Poker, 888Poker and WSOP NJ. Party Poker and Borgata Poker are licensed to the Borgata Atlantic City, sharing their player bases on the aptly named Party Borgata Network. 888Poker and, although both licensed under Caesars Interactive and using the same 888-branded software, didn’t not begin sharing their player bases until last month.

With that in mind, only Borgata (Party/Borgata Poker) and Caesars (WSOP/888 Poker) are reporting online poker revenue. In that regard, Party Borgata still maintains a solid lead, representing $1,283,746 (55.83%) of the total peer-to-peer yield for January. WSOP/888 are slowly catching up though with a total of $1,015,680 on the month (up from $949,432 in December 2014).

WSOP NJ / 888Poker lead New Jersey in Cash Game Traffic

In terms of cash game traffic, however, and 888Poker are now cornering the New Jersey market. After partially combining their player bases in mid-January, the Caesar-licensed operators finally edged out the Party Borgata Network as the most popular poker site in New Jersey. According to PokerScout, Party Borgata currently averages 150 cash game players, while WSOP/888 have climbed to 220 players on a 7-day average.

Helping to keep Party Borgata on top in the online poker revenue counts was last month’s second running of the Garden State Super Series (GSSS II). The online poker series ran from January 11th through the 25th of the month, drawing in a plethora of players to participate in the 69-event, $1 million guaranteed series.

Remarkably, and 888Poker held no events of that caliber last month, yet still managed to see a small increase in online poker revenue. As such, it will be interesting to see just how well Party Poker NJ and Borgata Poker perform in February compared to WSOP and 888Poker when no major online poker events are on the table.

The biggest guaranteed events for New Jersey online poker players in February are the Sunday Majors. Again, Party Borgata has the better offering with a $100k GTD at 5:00pm every Sunday, but WSOP and 888 are working their way up, having increased the Big Sunday from $35k to $50k for last weekend’s Feb 15th rendition. Whether the prize will remain the same this coming Sunday is yet to be seen.

For the last 13 months, the Party Borgata network has led New Jersey’s online poker market in cash game traffic. WSOP NJ was able to creep up behind its rival a few times, but it wasn’t until this last weekend that the Caesars-owned poker room finally took top billing. Not only that; 888’s All American Poker Network (AAPN NJ) skipped ahead into the 2nd spot.WSOP NJ leads online poker cash game traffic in New Jersey

After maintaining such a strong lead since The Garden State’s iGaming market first went live in November, 2013, the last place Party Borgata expected to be was on bottom. But after New Jersey’s online poker industry was reduced to just three competitors late last year, that’s exactly where the former leader ended up over the weekend.

As for why Party Poker and Party Borgata (collectively Party Borgata) have fallen behind, there are a few factors that can be taken into account. First and foremost, on Monday, January 12, 2015, New Jersey’s and 888Poker initiated a partial merger of their player bases. Secondly, Party Borgata’s most avid members haven’t been especially happy with the software. We’ll discuss more on those issues in a moment, but first…

Current Online Poker Traffic Stats

If we review the Garden State’s online poker cash game traffic over the last nine days, we see a significant change in 7-day averages. We’ll start with Monday, January 12, 2015—the day player pooling first began between WSOP NJ and 888Poker—then proceed to the following Friday, four days later, and finally today’s current stats, another four days down the road.

Note that the following results are derived from the traffic tracking statistics of PokerScout.

NJ Online Poker Traffic Stats since WSOP/888 Merge
Network Jan 12 Jan 16 Jan 20
Party Borgata 160 150 160
WSOP NJ 95 140 190
888Poker 90 130 170


WSOP/888 Player Pooling a Huge Success

WSOP NJ and 888Poker NJ are both powered by 888 software, but unlike Party Poker and Borgata Poker (both powered by, the two chose not to pool their players from the start. Last week, all low-limit cash game tables were pooled between WSOP and 888. A series of GTD tournaments were also shared, including $130k worth of each sites largest daily and weekly majors.

Negative Feedback for Party Borgata

For the last few months, ever since a major update to the software in September 2014, an MFC Error has been plaguing the online poker network. It mostly affects grinders and players who have multiple tables and/or programs open, particularly when tournament announcements pop up, causing the online poker room to crash. Players generally report other errors within the software upon relaunch, such as the inability to see hole cards.

A fix to the problem was promised on January 5, but no update occurred. Again, a fix was expected during the “week commencing 12th Jan”, as per Party_Rep ‘Colette’ on the TwoPlusTwo forums. But again, no update occurred. Instead, on Friday players were told that previous updates in December were meant to fix the MFC errors—(obviously, that didn’t work)—and that technicians are still working to find “the root cause”.

Players were once more asked to contact customer support with their account information and complete details of any further errors. Members have been justifiably outraged, including many who experienced repeated errors during the site’s GSSS II online poker series. All in all, while traffic is currently on par with last week’s early-week results, once the GSSS II is completed, there could be a lot more New Jersey players making the switch to WSOP NJ and/or 888Poker.

WSOP is dominating the regulated online poker industry in Nevada, but has held the respectable position of #2 in New Jersey since the market went live in November 2013. Competition has driven WSOP to increase its Action Club VIP loyalty rewards program, and it’s giving most online poker players in both states something to rejoice about. As has become the norm in today’s internet poker industry, recreational players are the real target.

The overhauled Action Club includes a series of additional tiers, including a new Copper level that requires just 2 Action Player Points (APP) to reach. The online poker site previously required 10 APP in a month to reach the first tier of the VIP program, termed Bronze status. With 2 APP earned for every $1 contributed to the rake at cash games, or $1 in tournament fees paid, even the most recreational of players should have no trouble reaching the required monthly minimum to earn loyalty rewards at

To achieve Bronze status, a player will now need to earn 40 APP in a month, but a Copper+ level was thrown in between with a 20 APP requirement to achieve. A Bronze+ was also supplemented, requiring 100 APP in a month’s time. Silver status still necessitates 200 APP, Gold 400 APP, Platinum 1,200 APP and Diamond 3,500 APP. The former Silver+, Gold+ and Platinum+ levels were removed.

Online poker players will still need to reach the Silver level or above to receive WSOP Points, which can be converted to cash at a rate of $1 for every 100 points (1,000 point minimum to redeem), but other rewards are available to those who play just enough to reach to lowest tiers. And with the minimum 2 AP requirement now available, that should include a lot more members of the Nevada and New Jersey online poker rooms.

All players who earn at least 2 – but less than 200 – APP in a month will receive exclusive invites to monthly Action Club freerolls. Not to leave anyone out, even players who don’t reach a status of any level can participate in the weekly $250 freeroll tournaments.

WSOP Annual Rewards

The yearly rewards levels received a slight augmentation as well. A new Super Elite level was snuggly fitted between the original Elite and Super Seven statuses. Previously, Super Seven members were entitled to a competitive rakeback of 35%. That figure has dropped to 30%, but realistically speaking, it shouldn’t affect too many people since it requires 400,000 APP in a year’s time.

On a brighter note, the new Super Elite status (250,000 APP) will give standard Elite members (50,000 AP) a much more reasonable goal to shoot for, and increase their rakeback rewards from 20% to 25% in doing so.

On the whole, WSOP’s loyalty rewards aren’t all that impressive, but it’s definitely an improvement. Plus, the Action Club correlates with the land-based casino rewards of Caesars Entertainment properties, known as Total Rewards. All Action Club points earned at the online poker room are added to a player’s Total Rewards membership (if they have one), and for land-based players who reach Platinum, diamond of Seven Star status in the Total Rewards program, they can request their status be transferred to the online Action Club.

With the possibility of a regulated online poker market still up in the air in California, a local tribe has traversed the virtual countryside by launching a brand new online casino in New Jersey, Pala Casino. The Pala Band of Mission Indians launched after partnering with The Borgata in Atlantic City, and says an online poker venue is on the horizon.

Pala Casino is operated by Pala Band of Mission IndiansPala Casino received approval from the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement to launch the new Pala Casino dot-com, which went live late last week weekend in the Garden State. This marks the first time a real money, tribal owned online casino has launched under the authorized regulation of a US state, albeit located outside of the tribe’s home jurisdiction.

The Pala Band has been working diligently to increase the revenue at its Pala Casino Resort and Spa, situated on the Pala Indian Reservation just outside of San Diego, California. With 2,000 slot machines, nearly 100 table games and an assortment of 10 inviting restaurants, the 500-guest room facility is now in great shape, leaving the tribe with nothing more to do than wait on California legislators. The tribe has been anticipating the launch of regulated online poker in the Golden State, going so far as to contract American poker pro Phil Ivey as its brand ambassador last year, but the tribe had apparently grown weary of playing the waiting game.

“We will operate only in New Jersey and that means the product will change and improve over time; the player journey, issues related to geolocation, the gamification of the sign up process so that it is more engaging for the player,” said Jim Ryan, CEO of Pala Interactive, which operates the new Pala Casino website. “All this attention to detail will mean that the 90 plus games that we will be offering will be the best they can be for our customers.”

The tribe announced long ago that they intended to enter the online casino industry, but considering the landscape of iGaming in California, it makes sense that they would choose a more fertile ground for their operations. New Jersey has by far the highest population of the three states that have authorized online poker and/or casino gambling, and despite suspected market saturation, Pala feels thy will be able to gain a strong enough foothold in the Garden State.

“We had a solid weekend and we have yet to start marketing,” Ryan explained the tribe’s enthusiasm for the Pala Casino website. “We believe we are breaking into the New Jersey market at the perfect time.” The extension of the product to include an online poker room is expected to occur as early as the first quarter of 2015.

As for Phil Ivey’s former sponsorship deal with Pala, that has likely dissolved considering the current circumstances. Ivey’s relationship with The Borgata isn’t the best right now. He is currently in the middle of a lawsuit, filed by the Atlantic City casino, in which he is accused of cheating the Borgata out of $9.6 million by exploiting a defect in the cards at the Baccarat tables.