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Binions Introduces New Poker Show

The management of Binion's Gambling Hall and Hotel are going back to its roots in the hopes of breathing new life into the gambling institution.

Binion's is capitalizing on poker, and as a part of its efforts to rejuvenate itself, Binion's is introducing a new televised poker tournament.

After the successful "Ultimate Poker Challenge", the producers are now introducing "Cash Poker", scheduled to start filming December 16, says Ultimate Poker Challenge President Dan Pugliese.

"Top pros will be playing against each other," he said, "for $25,000 (buy in), you can play for three or four hours."

"Binion's gets on TV three times a week and gets some commercials," he says, giving the resort a publicity boost. The audience is at an estimated 72 million on WGN, and another 163 million through syndication.

Poker was what made the Glitter Gulch resort famous under founder Benny Binion and his World Series of Poker. The former Binion's Horseshoe and its poker tournament were bought by Harrah's Entertainment in 2004. Harrah's later sold Binion's to MTR gaming, but retained WSOP and the Horseshoe name.

"The Binion's name is so tied to poker. They won't have the most spectacular Cirque (du Soleil) show, so this is a good way for them to compete," said David Schwartz, director of the Center for Gaming Research at the University of Nevada.

"Binion's has one of the largest poker rooms with 41 tables. Seven or eight months ago, you'd rarely see five tables out of 40 with players on them," said Pugliese. "Now, with the Ultimate Poker Challenge, they are averaging 15 tables in play."

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