Phil Ivey Acts Ingenuous Over Use of Busty Cocktail Servers and Ample Liquor Output at Borgata Baccarat Sessions

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Borgata Babes Phil Ivey baccarat edge
But can she cook? Phil Ivey claims that the Borgata used beautiful and voluptuous cocktail waitresses, sometimes referred to as the Borgata Babes, in an attempt to distract him during baccarat sessions. (Image:

Phil Ivey has been accused by the Borgata casino in Atlantic City of using illegal tactics to cheat the property out of millions at the baccarat tables by gaining an unfair advantage.

Now Ivey has fired back, saying it’s the casino that took steps to make sure it could gain an edge over him, albeit using the much more conventional tactics that are used at gambling joints around the world.

Specifically, some distracting cleavage emerging from the Borgata Babes’ low-on-fabric cocktail server outfits, and a generous pour of top-shelf alcohol brands.

We know you are as shocked as we were.

Stating the Obvious

In a court filing earlier this week, documents were revealed in which Ivey asserted that the casino took just as many measures to gain an advantage in the baccarat games as he did, most obviously by offering him “free alcohol served by only the most curvaceous and voluptuous females in the industry.”

Alcohol, Waitresses Can Impair Judgment, Ivey Says

“It distracts you from your playing. I mean, anything they can do to give themselves an advantage,” Ivey said. “Everyone knows that alcohol impairs your judgment, and they offer that, and they have the pretty cocktail waitresses and they’re all very flirty. They’re talking to you, you know. I got quite a few numbers.”

Those comments were part of an effort by Ivey’s lawyers to get a sworn statement from the Borgata’s food and beverage manager. His legal team would like to get comments on the “Borgata Babes,” the provocatively-dressed cocktail servers that have become a trademark of the casino.

The lawyers say that by refusing to make that manager available for a deposition, the casino is trying to conceal its own tactics when it comes to squeezing profits out of high rolling customers the way it squeezes hot girls into skimpy uniforms.

Ivey’s latest comments reportedly come from a March 26 deposition, during which he talked about several aspects of his case with the Borgata. In it, Ivey was asked about whether he had been drunk while playing any of his baccarat sessions.

“I’m not sure if I ever wasn’t drunk while I was playing,” Ivey said. “I mean, I’m not sure. I may have drank some alcohol.”

Ivey then noted that it wouldn’t matter much if he had been drunk during the sessions, as it was his associate, Cheng Yin Sun, who was ultimately making the decisions in those games.

Borgata Claims Edge Sorting Amounts to Cheating

The case in question concerns four visits Ivey made to the Borgata in 2012, during which he won $9.6 million by playing baccarat at the casino. Ivey won in part due to a technique known as edge sorting, which allowed him to gain an advantage over the casino; the Borgata is now suing in an attempt to recover those winnings.

The technique relied on the casino agreeing to use a brand of playing cards that were known to be cut imperfectly. Ivey and Sun asked the dealer to turn high cards 180 degrees; because of the imperfections in the cards, they were then able to tell the high cards from low ones, providing a significant advantage over the casino.

While the general concept of edge sorting is not terribly complex, the mechanics of the technique have proven confusing to some. According to parts of Ivey’s deposition that were obtained by PokerNews, that included one of the lawyers asking questions about the technique.

“Do you understand what I’m saying?” Ivey asks at one point.

“No,” the lawyer replies.

“I don’t know how better I can explain it,” Ivey responds. “It’s a good card to be turned that way for us. It’s a bad card, so turn it that way.”

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