LAS VEGAS -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- The unique role that poker plays in today's gaming environment will be discussed during Global Gaming Expo's (G2E) first-ever session focusing specifically on the voice of the poker playing community.
"Power Poker: The Players' View" will be held on Wednesday, Sept. 25 at 3 p.m. in the Table Games Lounge on the G2E exhibit floor. Speakers will include professional poker players Antonio Esfandiari, Matt Glantz, Jay Farber and Jennifer Shahade, and will be moderated by iGaming advocate and commentator Marco Valerio. During the session, the panelists will discuss the rise of Internet poker, the proper management of a live poker room, the game's impact on mainstream culture, and how to understand poker from the player's point of view.
G2E is the premier trade show and conference event for the international gaming entertainment industry and provides gaming professionals with access to cutting-edge products and technologies, valuable networking opportunities, and unmatched educational programming. The 2013 event will be held Sept. 23-26 at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas.
"We recognize the growing interest in poker and are excited to introduce this topic to our lineup at G2E this year," said Courtney Muller, senior vice president at Reed Exhibitions, the co-host of G2E along with the American Gaming Association "G2E is an event created by the industry, for the industry, and this session will provide first-hand accounts of key issues impacting poker players and this segment of the industry."
The past year has been a critical year for online poker. The first U.S.-regulated online poker room, Ultimate Poker, went live for real money in Nevada in recent months, and signed Esfandiari, the two-time World Poker Tour champion and three-time World Series of Poker champion, as its brand ambassador.
"As a poker player, I'm excited to see the growing interest and increased attention that this game is receiving," said Esfandiari. "I'm thrilled to be participating on the upcoming players panel at G2E and look forward to sharing my knowledge and opinions on this topic."
Today, more than ever, the term "poker ambassador" is in vogue, as casinos look for innovative ways to market their poker product.
"I envision a partnership between every regional poker room and their resident professional poker players, so as to create a familiar, entertaining and easily accessible poker playing atmosphere," said Glantz, poker room ambassador at the Parx Casino in Pennsylvania.
Perhaps no city has experienced the growing fusion between gaming and nightlife entertainment better than Las Vegas. Farber, a local nightlife professional and professional poker player for the online website 888poker, made headlines this year by reaching the final table the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event.
"I'm honored to be a part of such a distinguished poker players panel," said Farber. "I look forward to discussing ways in which we can expand and improve the online and offline experience. I also hope to provide a unique insight into gaming's effect on Vegas nightlife."
One of poker's most exciting characteristics is its unique combination of skill versus chance.
"When I began playing poker, I approached it much like a chess player, focusing on the strategic elements of the game, and only slowly learning to enjoy the gambling aspects of it," said Shahade, internationally acclaimed chess champion, author and poker player. "As more states begin to regulate online poker, this distinction becomes more important. I'm also looking forward to discussing how our poker culture can attract and welcome new female players to the game, both live and online."
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