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Five Mo<span id="more-11001"></span>st Baffling Moments in the Gambling Universe 2015: Part One

A judge by having a penchant for history and Shakespeare may decided that March 15, 2016 would be a good deadline for Caesars to get lienholders on board with its bankruptcy restructuring plan.

Baffling moments in gambling, you say? What?

As top gambling journalists, it is not our job to be baffled; it’s our work to cut through the presssing issues with razor-sharp reviews and observations.

Sometimes, though, you merely need to throw your hands in the atmosphere and go WTF? Knowing that, here are the top five many gambling that is baffling of 2015.

CSIG Rhetoric

The Coalition to Stop online Gambling CSIG) is an expert at churning out baffling statements, and in 2015, these may have struck their zenith. The coalition subscribes to the ‘it’s-true-because-it-rhymes’ brand of rhetoric, and thus phrases such as ‘click your phone, lose your house’ plus the variation that is slightly zingier your mouse, lose your house,’ went down gangbusters at anti-gambling cocktail parties this year.

Representative Jason Chaffetz’ (R- UT 3rd District) assertion that RAWA is really a pro-states’ rights bill, despite all evidence to the contrary, was pretty ‘out there’ in the bafflement stakes, we thought. And meanwhile, John Kindt, a professor at the University of Illinois Law class, was fond of quoting a scholarly study from 1999, the times of dial-up Internet, as proof that ‘Internet gambling can not be regulated.’

Finger on the pulse here, Professor.

However, the award for the baffling that is most CSIG statement of the entire year goes to a ‘news’ header on the organization’s website which screamed ‘Online Gambling Hurts Farmers.’

The logic of why this demographic is very at risk is lost on us, and we realize CSIG is not averse to resorting to your usage of emotive language to make an intellectually dishonest point or two, but farmers? The correlation that is only might make was that spades might be utilised by farmers to dig things, so there you go.

The Daily Fantasy Sports Scandal

The daily fantasy sports (DFS) scandal was pretty odd when you consider it. DFS continued its unstoppable rise through the entire first nine months of the season, with the most truly effective two internet sites, FanDuel and DraftKings, securing vast sums of dollars in investments as the multibillion dollar industry began mulling international expansion and eventual world domination.

With all this at risk, you may have thought that someone at the two kingpin businesses would have recalled to prohibit their players from taking part in games at rival sites.


DFS became thoroughly unglued by the end of September, when it emerged that a DraftKings employee had accidentally released player data prior to the week’s NFL games had begun. This employee won $350,000 playing at FanDuel in the same week.

Accusations of ‘insider trading’ were maybe overblown, and the employee was fundamentally cleared of wrongdoing, but the public’s faith in DFS was shaken, and suddenly the industry ended up being facing attacks on all fronts, from player legal actions to judicial investigations to denouncements from regulators and politicians.

Beware the Ides of March

That Caesars Entertainment’s debt appears at an unprecedented industry high of around $20 billion ended up being a fact that baffled the Nevada Gaming Commission at a meeting to discuss its messy bankruptcy proceedings this season.

The Commission called the problem ’embarrassing,’ and suggested that the ongoing company refrain from ‘building any Ferris wheels for the while’ to chuckles from assembled people associated with press.

‘Everyone tosses the economy underneath the coach,’ snapped commission chairman Tony Alamo testily.

In searching for Chapter 11 proceedings for the main operating unit, Caesars happens to be accused by its second lien creditors of restructuring its assets in an easy method that unfairly prefers its controlling personal equity backers, who were the people that got Caesars in this mess in the place that is first.

Faced with lawsuits and accusations of fraudulent behavior, Caesars devised a new restructuring plan. Now the business is faced with the duty of getting its lesser bondholders on board. The deadline for this is March 15 of next year, after which Caesars will lose control over its own bankruptcy proceedings.

Shakespeare scholars among you will recognize this date because the one known as ‘the Ides of March’ in the Roman calendar and the fateful day’s Julius Caesar’s assassination by his former supporter, Brutus.

Who’d have thought that a bankruptcy judge would have this type of sense that is wicked of?

There were countless baffling moments this present year, we had to make this piece a two-parter, so come back tomorrow for more gambling that is bewildering moments from 2015.

Five baffling that is most Gambling Moments of 2015, Part Two

Revel owner Glen Straub finished up 2015 saddled with the planet’s biggest bill that is electric. (Image: Tom MacDonald/WHYY)

Welcome back to Part Two of our operate down of 2015’s most happenings that are baffling in which we ponder some of the more mystifying occurrences associated with the year inside and around the video gaming universe.

Chukchansi Fees

In July, former Chukchansi tribal frontrunner Tex McDonald accepted a plea discount and was sentenced to 485 days for false imprisonment after admitting to being the orchestrator of 1 of the very idiotic moments in the history of the casino industry.

The previous October, he had lead an armed attack on the Chukchansi Gold Casino, near Fresno, California.

McDonald had stormed the property with some 20 accomplices, sending clients operating for cover, and security that is ordering at gunpoint into a safe area of the building. Guards were reportedly handcuffed and assaulted, but no casino customers had been hurt.

This this indicates, was the culmination of a power that is bizarre between two rival Chukchansi factions vying for control of the casino. McDonald have been running the casino from a business that is nearby up until August 2014, whenever a rival group, led by one Reggie Lewis, resulted in the evening and literally took the casino over.

While Lewis is very good at surreptitiously taking over gaming properties, it seems his admin skills aren’t quite so hot, as he failed to register the accounts, which meant that the casino was facing a $16 million fine from the regulator and possible closure.

McDonald chose to take action that is drastic charged into the casino with firearms drawn. We’re not quite certain what his goal had been, but he’ll have lots of time to consider it in the pokey.

Straub’s Strange Energy

Eccentric billionaire Glen Straub was a lively and um, interesting source of entertainment this 12 months. The home magnate initially lost the auction to buy the distressed Revel Casino property in Atlantic City and immediately blasted the auction as ‘improper.’

Having suffered a bad bout of something, Straub explained, he’d flown from New Jersey to his house in Florida to retrieve his medicine, an undeniable fact that so coincidentally took him from the picture during the last crucial stage of the bidding process.

However, when the winner associated with bid, Brookfield Asset Management, got wind of Revel’s astronomical power bill, a non-negotiable $36 million per it bailed on the deal anyway year. Straub stepped in, picking right up the $4.9 billion home for a song, at $82 million.

The idealistic developer initially stated he desired to reopen Revel not being a casino, but as an ‘elite university’ where the globe’s brightest people could spend their days ruminating on solving global issues such as for example ‘famine, cancer and nuclear waste storage.’

Once he previously his hands in the property, though, he decided that he’d probably just reopen it as being a casino after all, albeit it one devoted to ‘life extension science,’ whatever that is.

By of this year, it was none of these things april. What it had been, however, in line with the Atlantic City Fire Department, ended up being a ’47-story fire danger,’ as Straub had been refusing to honor the contract because of the adjacent power plant and had been cut off.

A insufficient flowing water through Revel’s pipes, with no electricity to allow firefighters access to the floors that are upper suggested that a fire outbreak might be potentially catastrophic.

The seemingly cursed casino property stays shuttered while Straub’s unpaid power bills run into the millions. Maybe he can’t read them while sitting at night.

Nov Macau: What took place to the Gambling Fireball in 2015?

The fortunes of Macau were already tumbling as 2015 started. The downturn actually started back in June 2014, when the gambling hub recorded the first-ever monthly dip in revenues since Stanley Ho’s casino monopoly finished in 2012, a move which had effortlessly opened the Asian gambling region up to international investment.

However, no one could quite have anticipated numbers to fall so dramatically, and consecutively, month-on-month, for the rest of the year and throughout 2015.

Macau’s casinos had been suffering from the anti-corruption drive of Asia’s president Xi Jinping (center) in 2015, which largely impacted the gambling that is asian’s junket industry this year. (Image: Adrian Bradshaw/EPA)

What occurred?

Simply two months prior to the initial downturn, Macau had reported a record-breaking Q1 for 2014, with $12.6 billion in revenues. That has been up 19.8 percent from the quarter that is first of. And 2014 was on course to beat the entire year prior, itself a year that is watershed and Forbes ended up being calling Macau ‘one associated with earth’s fastest growing economies.’ The enclave ended up being taking in in just two months what Las Vegas scored in a year.

Macau had benefitted significantly from the explosion in Chinese tourism in the preceding years. A greater freedom of movement and a burgeoning new middle that is chinese had certainly contributed to the gambling boom, and, as the Chinese economy began slow, so did the flow of gamblers through the mainland.

VIP Junkets Hit the Skids

But Macau’s bread and butter had been Chinese VIP high rollers. These whales’ trips were facilitated by Macau’s multibillion-dollar junket industry with a fondness for high stakes baccarat. In reality, the junkets accounted for some 60 percent of Macau’s revenues during the boom years.

Junket operators would work as middlemen, arranging trips and lending their consumers large sums of cash in order to curb restrictions in the level of cash which could be brought from the mainland. VIPs would then settle their debts on their return to China.

Many of these VIPs were, in reality, corrupt Communist Party officials whoever fortunes were produced by kickbacks or embezzlement of general public cash. Corruption had reached proportions that are epidemic China, and Beijing had had enough, vowing to track fraudulent officials ‘to the ends of this earth.’

Fearing reprisals from Beijing, the VIPs began to stay away of Macau, going to Manilla in the Philippines, or to Vietnam’s Ho Tram Strip to instead get their kicks.

Unprecedented Crackdown

The anti-corruption drive was squeezing Macau throughout the second half 2014. Too as scaring off the high rollers, Beijing had imposed restrictions on the usage of UnionPay, Asia’s only domestic bank card, which further stemmed the flow of middle-class money from the mainland.

Meanwhile, the introduction of a blanket smoking ban inside gambling enterprises neglected to improve matters.

But by early 2015, Asia had ramped it up a notch, starting an ‘unprecedented crackdown’ in the junket industry, tightening regulatory controls and demanding more transparency through the junkets about their clients and the criminal history of their employees. By the junket industry was ‘broken,’ according to Rob Goldstein, LVS president september.

New casino resorts, conceived through the boom time, nevertheless opened their doors this such as James Packer’s Studio City Macau, while Steve Wynn’s Wynn Palace Macau due to open in the middle of next year.

Despite the malaise that is general stingy dining table games allocations for new casinos from the Macau regulator which is bowing to pressure from Beijing, Packer said he remained upbeat about the spot’s long-term future, while conceding that Macau’s downturn has been ‘worse than anyone expected.’

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