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Welcome to our weekly Weekly Burn & Turn, where we discuss the latest poker updates published during the week.

Vidcast for the week of: Sunday, November 22, 2015

The One With Thanksgiving

Thank you so much for watching.

If you would like to read the articles discussed in our vidcast, please see the links below!

(1:27) Pennsylvania iGaming Bill Approved by Committee

(4:48) Informed vs Watered Down Poker Content: Which Attracts New Players

(9:28) Rediscovering Poker Fandom at WSOP 2015

(11:17) How to Make WSOP More Fan Friendly in 5 Steps

Have an idea of something we should discuss? Drop us a line at [email protected]. We would love to hear from you!

Transcription Below

Happy Thanksgiving everybody. On this episode of the Weekly Burn & Turn we talk about new exciting developments for online poker in Pennsylvania. There’s a second topic; I don’t remember what it is. Then there’s rediscovering poker fandom at the WSOP; and 5 ways to make the WSOP more fan-friendly; right after this.


Hello and welcome everyone to another rousing episode of the Weekly Burn & Turn for the week of November 22nd, 2015. I’m Robbie Strazynski.

And I’m Shimi Weiss. Thanksgiving episode!

Thanksgiving! Happy Thanksgiving everybody. How’s it going everyone? Mayflower huh? Plymouth rock.

That’s very well educated.

Pilgrims! Indians! It’s all good. Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy your gourds, your cornucopia, your cranberry sauce and all your trimmings, and football, and Poker Update’s Weekly Burn & Turn. Happy to be here for you for another week of poker entertainment.

This is actually going to be the first annual Poker Update Thanksgiving Show. It’s the first time we can say it’s the Thanksgiving Show.

That’s right, it is the Thanksgiving Show.

Every year!

Every Thanksgiving, and every week in between, if you don’t mind. So let’s jump into the first topic of the show: Pennsylvania!

That’s a good topic to start with for Thanksgiving.

That’s right with the whole founding fathers, and all that.

It’s one of the original colonies.

Yes. How many colonies were there Shimi?

There were 13. I know stuff.

It’s in the show notes.

That’s right, we know exactly what we’re talking about.

Lots of show notes today, let’s see how long we go. Pennsylvania is in the news this week because online gaming passed the committee bill. Yay!

This is a very good step, because it means very soon we’ll have another State that legalizes online poker.

Well hopefully. Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. It’s like during Thanksgiving Dinner, everyone is like “Hey! Turkey!” but there’s a lot of stuff to get through first.

Right, but the path is clear. We’re on the way there. How many States do we have now? Pennsylvania is going to join Delaware (we always make fun of Delaware), New Jersey, and there’s one more right?

Thank you to our one Delaware follower by the way. And there’s Nevada.

Nevada! That’s right! Did California do it?


What’s going on, California? Come on man. Seriously, New Jersey does it and California doesn’t manage it? Get with the program people!

Hopefully soon. So, anyways, Pennsylvania, get an 18-8 committee vote and agreed in their legislature that their bill will go unamended to a vote in the House and the State Senate to see if it will pass for iGaming, not just online poker but all sorts of casino games. If it passes the House and the Senate it will go on to the Governor and so.

18-8 is practically unanimous by political standards.

Everyone’s very excited, and it’s great, but the process is slow. Kind of slow like how you digest a Philly Cheese Steak: slow.

Well, I hope so.

Nonetheless it’s very good news and it’s great to hear it. Hopefully it will pass and it does get those interstate agreements. At some point, I don’t know if we’ll get all 50 States.

We will get there, just give it some time. This is a very good step. This is the first one in two years.

I don’t know if all 50 States are going to do it but we’ll have a good number. Do you want to sing a song about the 50 States?

Well do you know all 50 States?

I know Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, and I know Pennsylvania.

That’s all we need to know, but if you watch Animaniacs you’ll learn all the States and their Capitals. *Columbus is the Capital of Ohio* That’s the only one I remember.

So we hope to see some more progress and of course give thanks (see what I did there?) to another State, hopefully very soon.

I saw what you did there.

Thank you, Shimi. So, speaking of watered down poker content….No?

No. Oh God, we’ve got to work on that.

We’ll work on that.

This Thanksgiving I’m thankful for the good segues we’ve had.

I’m thankful to have a co-host, because it’s very difficult to do this on your own. We’ll talk about another article written by David Huber about ‘Informed vs Watered Down poker Content: Which attracts new players?’

Obviously, we’re the informed! We bring deep analysis of poker and the finest details of the game, right?


This is where you should comment below, and all I want to see is one word: ‘Right.’

I’m thankful for the two subscribers that we have here. It’s a very good article actually. It’s asked the question of which attracts new players. I think it’s interesting. First of all, I think it’s good to have a variety of poker content out there. Stuff for the grinders and the professionals to improve their game, just like poker coaching videos, and things like that. Then some more entertainment shows, like here the Weekly Burn & Turn. Some of the podcasters, and the live streams are great at this.

And they’re fun to watch. That’s the most important thing. That’s the reasons you guys watch us, because we’re entertaining.

We try.

Or as my wife says, we’re adorkable.

Wow, a little bit of a stretch.

It’s a real word, look it up. No, don’t look that up.

I’m thankful for Webster’s Dictionary.


The truth is, though, you’ve also got to have stuff for the new players who are not as informed about poker. If I sit down and watch curling, I need to have the basics, I need to have an announcer who’s going to walk me through the process, or else it’s going to look like a bunch of people sweeping the ice.

RIght, because everyone is sitting down watching curling.

You know, there are more people than you think who watch curling.

Well, there’s at least around 17 Canadians who watch it.

That’s the official Canadian sport. I mean there’s Ice Hockey, I think that’s Canadian too. Are you familiar with Whirlyball?

That’s not a real thing.

You’ve never heard of Whirlyball? He’s never heard of Whirlyball!!

Not a real thing.

Oh my god. It’s not really poker-related but I’m telling you, if you’ve never heard of Whirlyball, it’s bumper cars, basketball, and wiffle ball. No not wiffle ball. The thing with the net-stick, where you throw. I don’t know, but anyways, it’s all put together. You’ve got Bumping Cars!!

Not a real thing! I’m thankful that Americans don’t know anything about Whirlyball.

Next vacation Robbie goes on, we’re going to make sure he goes to play Whirlyball.

And curling! Anyway, about the more informed poker content, I definitely want to give a shoutout to Joey Ingram. Papppppiiiiiiiii! He’s the one who’s putting the Poker Life Podcast together. Lots of very interesting guests and of course they talk about poker strategy every once in awhile, and PLO (Pot Limit Omaha), and then there’s the Jason Somervilles and the Jaime Staples who also throw in strategy but people are tuning in to enjoy it and be entertained. A lot of good streamers out there, a lot of good poker entertainment, and strategy out there, and it’s a good thing that these guys are doing what they do. They’re bringing new players to the game and that’s sort of what we’re trying to do out here.

I think both of them have their merits. I don’t think you should just have one or the other. You need to have watered down as well as informed poker content. It’s important to be able to attract as large a crowd as possible.

Agreed. One other thing that’s interesting to examine is the WSOP itself. That’s the one that anyone who’s heard of poker knows about. Everyone has seen an episode of the World Series. I became a poker fan a very long time ago, and back during the Moneymaker Boom (and even before that), the coverage they used to give was very, very basic – stuff like, a flush beats a straight, but everyone knows that now though. So even the WSOP evolved and realized that people are much more aware of what poker is, so they bring in professional players for commentary and even that type of coverage is still watered down because you’ve got those side action championships with Norman Chad.

I think it’s like the Harry Potter effect. The first four books go over every single detail: this is a muggle, and this is a wizard. After that, you just assume people know what’s going on. If you’ve been here that long, you know that a flush beats a straight.

And that Whirlyball is not a real thing.

It is a sport! It is an actual sport with bumping cars.

If it is a sport, then go ahead and comment and tell me about it in the YouTube Channel. Speaking of the World Series, one of our writers, Jennifer Newell, had a real treat. She was treated by Pierre Neuville, who was a November Niner, to go watch him at the Final Table.

How exciting! That’s an amazing experience.

Wow, so jealous.

Definitely read the article because it’s very interesting – the whole process of just seeing it as a spectator. I hope one day we get to do that, and even report on that.

Yeah. I’m waiting to see which poker player is going to go ahead and invite us, whether it’s the final table or a $1/$2 cash game.

We’re gonna stop saying nice things about players!

Phil Hellmuth, you’ve got to fly us into the neighborhood game.

We’re waiting for that. Phil, you want to play against us. It’s been so long since we’ve played.

Forget about playing, I just want to sit there and hear him go “Honey, honey! You should see how he beat me again!” That’s Phil Hellmuth for you. Anyway, Jennifer wrote this great article about rediscovering her fandom. She’s been a professional poker writer for many, many years, and she’s covered events like this before. She’s covered the WSOP before, but this time she was there to just enjoy the experience and it reminded her, after all these years, what it’s like to be a fan. Walking around, going to Starbucks and just seeing Phil Hellmuth order a coffee. I would love to do that.

It’s good to see how they’re attracting fans again. Go ahead, get ready for the segue. This is going to be the perfect segue.

About Whirlyball?

No, about attracting fans. We’re talking about attracting fans. We need to figure out a way to attract more fans.

Oh! Well done!

We need to bring in more fans! How can we do it? Next article…(Yeah, that was me with the segue). That was an awesome segue by Shimi Weiss.

Well done, well done. And when you speak of yourself in the third person, you know the segues are going to be good.

Absolutely. Absolutely.

Absolutely. So, the final topic we’re going to cover here is ‘How to make the WSOP more fan friendly.’ Again, Jennifer was there as a fan and she was able to put together a great article. Ideas on how the WSOP can be more “for the fans” because it’s an event and you see all these people gathered around the final table and cheering everyone on. Yes it’s a competition, and it’s about the players because the players are putting up the money and so on, but for such a huge thing, you can do a lot more and make it a whole fan experience.

Yes, I liked what was said that on a basic level you need to make sure that everyone knows when it’s taking place. That’s a really big failure in terms of publicity. Everyone needs to know the process of being able to go there as a spectator. 

I wouldn’t call it a failure in terms of making it better for the fans. The November Nine is about 9 players who are finishing the 6,000 player poker tournament, but to make it better, and to make it more fan friendly, think about something like WrestleMania. It’s obviously about the guys and girls who are competing, but they make it a whole big fan experience as well. Another thing she suggested is a meet and greet with the broadcasters and the players.

That would be amazing. I want to see trash talk! Give them a microphone and pit them off against each other. That would be incredible. I want to see the smackdowns at the table. In the left corner, weighing such and such….that would be a lot of fun. I want to see T-Shirts shot into the crowd. If i’m a spectator, I’d want the guy with the big T-Shirt thing shooting them into the crowd.

Oh that would be really cool. Maybe they’d do that.

We have to go as spectators. You know what? Bring us in as spectators. We’ll be able to give you a much more informed report on what exactly is going on.

Looking at you, Phil Hellmuth.

That’s right, Phil. Come on buddy.

He’s always there. Anyways, so a lot of very good ideas like book signing and autograph sessions, and inviting fans to take part in the Hall of Fame Ceremony, another thing that the WWE does. They have thousands of people out there, when the Hall of Fame inductee comes and speaks. It’s a very cool thing. It makes fans really feel part of the experience.

Why wouldn’t you do it? Seriously, it’s such an easy way of tapping into the public and raising up the interest.

And also a good way of making some extra money at the WSOP, whether it’s a couple bucks of a token fee. I think it would be very cool and also creates more poker content because you’re going to film all of this and maybe broadcast it to everybody. One thing she didn’t say though, because the bottomline of all of this is to make poker more like wrestling, we’re going to bring steel chairs next time.

Oh! Steel chairs, that’s great! Smackdown! I want to see one of them pick up a chair and say “bad beat!” and smack the other with a chair!

That’s what the WSOP needs! Anyway, once again, Happy Thanksgiving everyone. We hope you enjoyed this poker entertainment.

Let us know what you’re thankful for.

Be sure to subscribe here, and put it in the comments. Look for us on Facebook, and @PokerUpdate on Twitter. Shoutout to your favorite people, or people you are thankful for, and to Phil Hellmuth of course (who’s going to fly us in next time he makes a final table).

Looking forward to that.

Happy Thanksgiving buddy, from the Weekly Burn & Turn.

Oh we’re going to be waiting a long time.

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