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NFL Week 5: Picks and Predictions

Posted by on Oct 10, 2015 in Blog, Essays | 2 comments

 

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NOLAN DALLA — 2015 NFL SEASON RECORD

20 WINS – 16 LOSSES — 1 PUSHES

STARTING BANKROLL:  $10,000.

CURRENT BANKROLL:  $12,322.

NET GAIN/LOSS:  + $2,322. 

BEST BETS OF THE WEEK:  4 – 2 – 0

LAST WEEK:  4 — 3 — 0 (+720)

 

Eight wagers this week, with about $3,000 in betting action.  Here are my plays and thoughts for each game….

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Movie Review: The Martian

Posted by on Oct 5, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Movie Reviews | 9 comments

 

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Matt Damon in Barstow, CA?

 

Leering over my keyboard while attempting to write a movie review of “The Martian,” one senses the same confusion upon gazing at the controls a spaceship.

One isn’t sure exactly which button to push or what lever to pull.

Undoubtedly, this big-budget science-fiction thriller is destined to become one of the year’s blockbuster mega-hits.  That’s because it has simply too many things going for it — an innovative film director, cool special effects, patriotic themes throughout, popular movie stars, and the requisite 3-D viewing experience, which is now imperative in attracting a younger generation of moviegoers with the collective attention span of a fidgety toddler posing for a baby photographer.  But gadgetry doesn’t necessarily make “The Martian” anywhere close to being a great, nor even a good film.  Actually, it’s pretty mediocre. I’ve been on airplane rides that were more suspenseful.  Anyone who’s booked a ticket on Spirit knows exactly what I’m talking about.

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NFL Week 4: Picks and Predictions

Posted by on Oct 3, 2015 in Blog, Essays | 0 comments

 

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NOLAN DALLA — 2015 NFL SEASON RECORD

16 WINS – 13 LOSSES — 1 PUSHES

STARTING BANKROLL:  $10,000.

CURRENT BANKROLL:  $11,592.

NET GAIN/LOSS:  + $1,592. 

BEST BETS OF THE WEEK:  3 – 2 – 0

LAST WEEK:  4 — 9 — 1 (-$1,779)

 

This is the toughest NFL card I’ve seen in some time.  Several games involve inconsistent teams and notable key injuries, particularly at the quarterback position.  I’m making less wagers than usual, but still have thoughts on every game.  I’ve made 7 plays, have downgraded the bet amounts and see just one Best Bet on the board.

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Current State and Future Prospects for the Casino Gambling Industry (or “What I Learned at G2E 2015)

Posted by on Oct 3, 2015 in Blog, Essays, General Poker, Las Vegas, World Series of Poker | 2 comments

 

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With Greg Carlin, CEO of Rush Street Gaming at G2E 2015

 

Preface:  This past week, I attended the 2015 Global Gaming Expo (G2E) in Las Vegas.  This was my eighth time to attend what is the world’s largest annual casino and gambling conference.  I’ve had the honor of speaking and appearing on two panel discussions in past years.  However, this time I attended solely as a media representative with the intent to report on much of what I learned, and speculate on the direction this sector is headed.  The opinions expressed here are entirely my own and do not reflect any of my past or present employers or associates.

 

[Gaming vs. Gambling:  I do not use the terms gaming and gambling interchangeably.  Gaming refers to interactive games not involving wagering.  Gambling refers to games of chance which including wagering.  Hence, when “gaming” is used herein any of my writings, it’s not a euphemism for “gambling.”]

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One Small Step for PokerStars, and One Giant Leap for Online Poker

Posted by on Oct 1, 2015 in Blog, Essays, General Poker, Personal | 0 comments

 

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Full Disclosure:  From 2004 through 2006, I served as Director of Communications for PokerStars.com (Rational Gaming Enterprises).  The views expressed herein do not reflect the opinions of my past or present employers or associates in any way.  My views are entirely my own.

 

 

All I could think about last night, upon hearing that PokerStars.com had finally been approved to operate legally on U.S. soil for the very first time was what must have been going on in the mind of Isai Scheinberg — the founder and pioneering force behind the company that I served loyally for nearly three years.

Somewhere out there, he must be smiling.

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How Chris Christie Can Win the Republican Presidential Nomination

Posted by on Sep 30, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Politics | 2 comments

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At first glance, Gov. Chris Christie has no shot at winning the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential nomination.  One might even go so far to say, he’s never stood a chance as a sort of political bird flying among fish that prefer to swim.

Gov. Christie come into the campaign with serious baggage, which was especially burdensome for a Republican.  The New Jersey governor lacks legitimate ultra-conservative credentials and is widely looked upon by many with suspicion and even scorn as a so-called “RINO” moderate, especially within extremist circles which have come to control the G.O.P. at virtually every level, including his own political backyard in the northeast.  Gov. Christie doesn’t even try to nudge his way into the loony bin of Bible-thumping, gun toting, immigrant-bashing, Obama haters.  He lacks the firebrand rhetoric of his Republican cohorts, who continuously clang the Pavlovian bells that make the party faithful pant, salivate, and go woof.

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Imagine a World Where….

Posted by on Sep 29, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 3 comments

 

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Imagine a world where….

 

Everyone is religious.  All your family, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and associates are devout Christians.  Almost everyone who lives in your town or city attends church regularly.  The local church is the centerpiece of all social life and activities.

Christianity rules.  Christianity isn’t a secular concept, but rather is looked to as the supreme authority.  Religion dictates all national laws and local regulations.  Christian teachings outlaw homosexuality and deny gender equality.  Religious teachings forbid reproductive rights, including contraception and abortion which are outlawed.  Marriages are sometimes arranged and divorce is next to impossible, especially if instigated by a woman.

Science is doubted and discredited.  Science and discovery are looked upon with suspicion.  When new discoveries are made, they are ridiculed.  Advances in astronomy, biology, and medicine are considered blasphemous because they pose a serious threat to the natural order and traditional way of thinking.

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Is Las Vegas Still a Disneyland for Adults?

Posted by on Sep 28, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas | 7 comments

 

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For most, including those of us who now live here, Las Vegas started out as a fantasy land.

Las Vegas was a giant amusement park for adults where you played long and partied harder, and slept as little as humanly possible.  Given the typical Vegas vacation was perhaps 3 or 4 days, at most, we didn’t want to waste any precious time napping when instead we could be down in the casino gambling at the tables, seeing extravagant shows that were also ridiculously affordable, or feasting on $2.99 all-you-can-eat buffets, often comped.  There was plenty of time to sleep when we returned home.  Las Vegas was about staying up all day and all night, and maximizing the total vacation experience.

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Chats with Tats (My WSOP Interview with Tatiana Pasalic)

Posted by on Sep 26, 2015 in Blog, Essays, Talking Points, Video 1, World Series of Poker | 0 comments

 

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One of the privileges of working at the World Series of Poker every year is getting the opportunity to meet lots of interesting people, many who work in media.

Tatiana Pasalic and I have done numerous interviews together.  Our most recent segment was posted at CalvinAyre.com, which appeared just a few days ago at their website.

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