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Gary Trask

Gary  Trask
Gary serves as Casino City's managing editor and has worked as a writer and editor more than 20 years. The Boston native was a member of the Poker Hall of Fame's inaugural Media Committee and a current member of the Women in Poker Hall of Fame voting panel.

Contact Gary at and follow him on Twitter at @CasinoCityGT.

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Casino City's Friday Five: WSOP, massive winnings and prime real estate edition

15 Dec 2017

By Gary Trask
Despite the looming threat of losing net neutrality in the U.S., the Friday Five is back. Yes, the FCC's vote yesterday to repeal the protections it dutifully put in place back in 2015 will very likely dominate the news in the coming months as it heads to the courts. So, for this week's edition we'll take the liberty of ignoring net neutrality as a top story and highlight some other compelling news items from the world of gambling.

5. Wynn to purchase land across from Wynn Las Vegas

You've gotta admire Steve Wynn. The man who revolutionized Las Vegas by building casinos with exploding volcanos and dancing water fountains continued his forward thinking this week when Wynn Resorts announced it had purchased 38 prime acres of land on the Las Vegas Strip for future development.

The transaction includes the 34-acre site of the former New Frontier, formerly the Alon Resort site, as well as four additional acres connected to the site, for a total of $336 million.

In a press release, Wynn Resorts stated that the development of this land will "further change tourist visitation patterns in Las Vegas, drawing more visitors to the north end of Las Vegas Boulevard and its collection of luxury resorts, including the existing Wynn Las Vegas and the Paradise Park development slated to begin construction in January 2018 on the site of the former Wynn Golf Course."

This is more uplifting news for businesses at the north end of The Strip, which, after years of deflated traffic has seen expensive attempts at revitalization thanks to the opening of resorts like Lucky Dragon Hotel & Casino and SLS Las Vegas Hotel & Casino. Wynn throwing his proverbial hat in the ring will only further this cause.

4. Ignition Casino player hits $1.5 million jackpot

Congrats to Omar from Texas, who became an instant millionaire last weekend when he hit a progressive jackpot worth $1,557,193 on the mobile slot Jackpot Pinatas.

The good news for the rest of us? There's $4.4 million in jackpot funds still available at Ignition Casino right now, including $2.8 million from a game called Shopping Spree. So, once you're done reading the Friday Five, get on over to Ignition Casino and try to piggyback on Omar's big score.

3. PokerStars mints seventh millionaire of 2017

Good old Omar from Texas wasn't alone in winning some life-changing coin this week. Christmas came early for "beckskr" in Germany, who has won took down a $1,879,437.02 jackpot at PokerStars while playing Arcade Bomb.

The lucky German is the seventh millionaire crowned this year by the world's fastest growing online casino, which has launched over 150 new games this year alone.

2. FanDuel crowns World Fantasy Football Championship winner

The big winnings this week weren't exclusive to slot players. FanDuel crowned its 2017 World Fantasy Football Champion at the Terranea Resort in California last Sunday when Virginia's Mike Holton claimed the championship belt and grand prize of $500,000.

"I am a part-time player, so my wife and I are going to fly home first class, but other than that, we will put this money towards college tuition for our kids," said Holton, who can thank QB Phillip Rivers and WR DeAndre Hopkins for having big games that helped catapult him to victory.

Holton was one of 75 qualifiers to win a trip to Los Angeles that included airfare, transportation, a three-night stay at the Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, California, and a minimum prize of $10,000.

1. World Series of Poker announces 2018 daily event schedule

OK, if you're like me, you are sick of hearing about everyone else's great fortune and jealous you still haven't made that big hit that would allow you to quit your job yesterday.

If that's the case and you're a poker player, now is the time to plan your entry into the most prestigious tournament of them all, the 2018 World Series of Poker.

The renowned poker tournament runs from 29 May to 17 July at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. Nine new events have been added to the 2018 WSOP schedule, and five events from last year have been removed. Of course, the granddaddy of them all is the $10,000 Main Event, which has been moved up a little earlier than usual on the schedule. This year it begins on 2 July, with the final table ending with a new champion on 14 July.

If you're a poker fan, but not up to the task of actually playing in the WSOP, we strongly suggest you attend the event as a fan. It's truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience for anyone who's ever sweated a flop or hit a river flush.
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