Billionaire and Casino owner Sheldon Adelson has made his views on online poker abundantly clear and has clearly stated that he will spend whatever it takes in order to ensure that online poker is never legalized in the U.S. Adelson who has ties with a number of influential individuals has run a very strong anti-internet gambling campaign and that campaign has been gathering momentum with each passing month.
Adelson’ Las Vegas Sands Corporation owns the Venetian Hotel and Casino which operates one of the biggest poker rooms in Las Vegas. Earlier this week, there were a number of poker journalists and reporters who were operating out of the Venetian Hotel and Casino as they were covering a Mid-States Poker Tour. These reporters were not allowed to cover the tour which runs as a part of the Venetian’s quarterly Deep Stack Extravaganza series, mainly because the site promotes online poker.
It appears that Sheldon Adelson is taking his stance on online poker extremely serious as unofficial reports suggest that Adeslon is also cutting down on poker related activities in his casinos. He firmly believes that online gambling is morally wrong and exploits underage gamblers and also fosters a negative impact on society.
In 2013, the Venetian ran one of the biggest tournaments in Las Vegas. The Venetian which can only seat 59 tables, expanded by spreading out into the Palazzo Hotel and Casino next door and by doing so managed to increase to 119 tables. However, this year there are no such plans to expand and utilize extra space. The original schedule will most likely fill out the Venetian but officials confirm that there will be no expansion to accommodate a higher number of players.
Infact, the Venetian appears to be cutting down on its players. There have been reports of players getting shut out of tournaments due to early registration deadlines and cash tables. The Venetian declined to comment on Adelson’s anti-gambling campaign and its impact on poker related activities at the Venetian.
However, Venetian Tournament Director, Tommy LaRosa issued a statement to players stating that it was not possible for him to keep registration open for an extended period of time. He said that while he would love to fit in as many additional players as possible and have no limits on the prize pool or player tables. However, due to a lack of space, he had to close registration early and make sure the tournament rules were followed to ensure he ran a successful tournament.