Planet Mark's Blog. Thoughts, News And Strategy For Poker Tournaments Of All Size

SCOOP Time To Get Your Steps On + Cake / Lock Roundup

I learned something new about the SCOOP which I wanted to pass on ASAP today. Most of the ‘Low’ buy-in events are priced at $25+$2, and you can use tickets for a ‘Step 2’ SNG to enter them… Now, with all the publicity and hype surrounding the Spring Championship – just sit back for a moment and consider how super-soft the Steps just became. Fresh news today confirming that Lock Poker are buying the Cake Poker network. I think this is good news for Cake / Merge / Lock and different types of players… more below.

SCOOP And Steps SNGs – Step 2 and 4 Tickets And Feeders Into Step 1

So, you can enter the low SCOOP events just by finishing in the first 2 spots of a Step 1 SNG – and finishing in the top 2 of a Step 3 SNG gives you a $215 Step 4 ticket which is good for most of the Mid buy-in SCOOP events… Those readers who are super-ambitious can even carry on to win High buy-in tickets – I will focus on the lower end for this post though.

What you will find is that the feeder tournaments, which are called ‘Steps Special’ (hyper turbos) and range between 3 and 100 FPPs to enter, have gone crazy! The 90 player Step 1s (which give away 20 $27 Step2 / SCOOP Low entries) have also been moved to the main tournament lobby, significantly increasing the traffic to these too.

I played a couple of these last night, and wow the standard was crazy bad… think Q-2 suited out of position being considered the nuts on a A-Q-10 flop and you have a flavor of what to expect! If you have not yet got a Stars account then the SCOOP is an excellent reason to head on over. You can claim up to 3 separate welcome bonuses at 100% up to $600 total. Choose ‘Affiliate Marketing Code’ from the ‘Where Did You Hear About Us?’ list and then enter Pokerstars Marketing Code PSP3108 into the new box which appears. Click here to check out for yourself, I’ll see you in the SCOOP!  pokerstars-468-60 

Lock / Cake Takeover – Good News For US Players?

Lock Poker have been making the headlines by signing up a string of online poker pros and some big names too, with Annette_15 Obrestadt recently joining their ranks. In a big announcement Lock are taking over the Cake Poker network – which will involve leaving their current home of the Merge Poker Network. At the moment I do not know any details, or how long this move will take. This does sound like excellent news for all concerned though, here are my initial thoughts on how this could impact different player groups.

Cake Network Players: This network has been in steady decline and Lock joining will provide fresh players and hopefully a lot of fresh marketing and publicity too… At the very least a timely boost for current Cake network players. Merge Network Players: While a major site will be leaving the network we have to remember that the ‘pro focus’ marketing did attract a lot of more serious / experienced players compared with beginners. This means that the Merge tables could lose a good proportion of their grinders, making the games there even softer than they currently are… This should balance out the loss of volume nicely. US Players In General: Having Merge as the (relatively) dominant US poker site did limit choice a little too much. If Lock manage to revive the Cake Network then the competition between the sites could be a welcome boost to US Poker in general.

We will have to ‘watch that space’ to see how things work out!

GL at the tables, Mark

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