Short Stacks: Chess Streamer Gets First Win, Online Poker Cut from Kentucky Gambling Bill

3 min read

Online poker legalization in Kentucky is as good as dead for a fifth straight year, a chess streamer with more than 2 million subscribers wins her first poker tournament, and an NFL rookie hits a huge jackpot are some of the short stacks CardsChat picked up during the latest orbit of poker news.

Alexandra Botez
Popular chess streamer Alexandra Botez won her first poker tournament. (Image: PokerStars)

Winners are going to win, no matter the game they choose to play. Uber-popular chess player and streamer Alexandra Botez binked her first live tournament at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure a few days ago and she shared the news with her more than 2.2 million Twitch and YouTube followers.

Botez, a five-time Canadian girls chess champion, haș been playing more and more poker over the last year, appearing on livestreams and at tournaments. She secured her first trophy and $10,815 in a $550 hyper turbo freezeout event on the island that attracted 79 on Feb. 2.

Botez made a name for herself in the poker world last April when she won $457K on a Hustler Casino Live in a game filled with influencers and a man named Phil Hellmuth.

It was her second cash of the PCA, as well as her budding poker career. She finished 42nd in a $3,300 deepstack event for $5,200 two days before her victory. Congrats, Alexandra!

Rams rookie hits huge jackpot

Los Angeles Rams rookie running back Ronnie Rivers hit a jackpot on a three-card poker table that was worth as much of his first-year salary on Saturday. Ronnie Rivers is a great poker name, by the way.

Rivers won the $514,837 progressive jackpot at Caesars Palace, which falls only a few hundred dollars shy of what he made lugging the rock 21 times this season for the Rams as an undrafted free-agent.  He told a local news station that he was in Las Vegas to celebrate his mother’s birthday.

His hand was a Royal flush made of hearts.

Online poker axed from Kentucky gambling bill

Lawmakers in Kentucky are willing to sacrifice online poker legalization in order to get their colleagues to bring sports betting to the Bluegrass State.

Sen. Damon Thayer, the Majority Floor Leader, told an NBC affiliate that he is working on a bill that would replace one that was submitted in January that would allow sports betting, fantasy sports, and online poker in Kentucky.

He told the news station he’s stripping out online poker and fantasy sports to increase the odds of it passing. It’s the fifth year in a row that aa bill that would make online poker legal will fail in Kentucky.

No poker room for Danville Golden Nugget

The new Golden Nugget in Danview, Ill., is expected to open in three months, but it will not have a poker room.

“That’s not to say we won’t have it in the future,” General Manager Juris Basens told the News-Gazette. “It’s a new market, and we want to hear from our customers what they want. We’re going with the plan we have, but we’re very flexible. We have area to expand if the business calls for it.”

Workers broke ground on the $16 million project last Spring. The casino will have a 41,500-square-foot gaming floor with 500 slot machines, 14 table games, and a sportsbook. But, again, no poker room unless customers get in Basens’ ear.

Also, the casino is hiring.

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