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Thread: Two Cubans Cheating At Live PLO throughout USA

  1. #1

    Two Cubans Cheating At Live PLO throughout USA

    There's a 1/2 PLO game with a $5 mandatory button straddle and UNLIMITED restraddles on Mondays at Tampa Greyhound Track aka Lucky's that's been running for a long time. I only started playing it within the past year. I'm a nit, but a profitable one, and had done well at this game.

    Two Cubans were always playing in the game, always sitting in seats 1 and seat 6 so they can "Cuban Sandwich" people between them for raises. Myself and other players have noticed them signal one another through different hand motions, way they play with their chips, etc. When one of them has AAxx and there are other players already all-in and they are trying to entice another player who is deciding if they want to call they'd show the two side cards like a 5 and 8 and say they have a wrap, not showing the AA. I haven't seen it but plenty of players and dealers talk about how they also snort coke in the bathrooms

    Despite this, I put up with it because they were SO bad. Calling off stacks preflop with shit holdings like Q983 double s00ted or Q976 one suit or Q932 suited to the three or J934 double s00ted (they won all of these btw).

    Generally I played from 10am - 4pm and then left, and had done pretty well over the past year. I always left before the Cubans did so wasn't seeing how they were ending their sessions.

    Over the past two months I've become REALLY suspicious, because I've noticed as the session progresses they have been getting involved in hands where their opponents have monsters and can never fold, and they have little equity or reason to be in the hands, but come out smelling like roses over and over.

    They will run it twice with very specific players, and only go once with most others.

    EXAMPLE HANDS

    I have QQ55 and Cuban in Seat 1 has KJ65 all diamonds. Flop is QT3 with two spades. He check-calls my pot size bet OOP. Turn is a 5, bringing a club draw to the board as well. Now he LEADS into me for almost all his chips when I still have the nuts and he doesn't block any of the flush draws or even have a complete wrap. I repot, he binks the red Ace on the river to scoop

    Cuban in Seat 6 has J943 double s00ted and gets it in preflop for $1,500 against AAK2 one suit and QTT8 one suit, only runs it once. Board comes JJ3Q9 and one opponent makes the straight, one makes the flush and he boats.

    Cuban in Seat 1 has straddled to $10 in the blinds, bunch of callers, I call with KK54 one suit. Gets to him, he pots to 75, bunch of callers, I limp-repot to 680. He calls and leaves himself 130 behind???? He has Q932 with the 32 of diamonds, I shit you not. Flop is Q-high, we get it in, he binks the third Q on the turn and wins.

    Cuban in Seat 1 gets it all-in preflop with 8665 one suit for $1,500 (he's CALLING these all-ins) when he's up against KKT9 and AAxx and flops a set, turns a straight and rivers a flush to scoop it

    Seat 1 again in a straddled pot we see a flop of 377 with two diamonds. I have QQJ7 with two diamonds as well, I pot it, he calls with 2456 NO DIAMONDS and rivers the straight, dodging all my outs

    Seat 1 straddled from BB to 10. Solid player UTG calls, I call from button. Seat 1 pots it OOP, both UTG and myself call. I hold AK76 double suited (to the Ace and King). Flop is AK5 with one of each of my suit giving me two backdoor nut flush draws, top two pair and backdoor straight outs as well. The Cuban knows both UTG and myself are solid players and this board is likely to have smashed our ranges, yet he leads out again, I pot it and he stacks off holding................JJT2 for the gutshot. He binks the J on the turn AND the Q on the river to further cement it.



    Now this room has dealers that hand shuffle and use a burn card, but no automated shufflers. After two months of losing these 70-80% spots my spidey senses are tingling. I don't know what they're doing, I don't know how they're doing it, but I know something is off. No one is this lucky to play garbage in spots where their opponents have monsters AND win every single time for stacks. I also hear about Seat 6 potting pre to 135 with TT65 one suit, calling a repot and 5 ways to a flop of 9TK getting it all-in multiway in a 13K total pot against a guy with KKQJ who has him dead to rights. Cuban binks the T and wins 13k

    So anyway, you're probably thinking I'm crazy, I'm out of my mind, there are burn cards, how is this happening???!!! It's just blind luck and I'm just bitching because I'm tilted. Well fortunately I wasn't wrong. I did some searching online and found a thread on Twitter from a year ago about two Cubans who were booted from Commerce, always sat opposite one another and were suspected of marking cards. So I get involved in the thread and start sharing details and I'm told it sounds like the same guys I'm dealing with. I notify the manager at Tampa Greyhound Track who tells me he's been in this business for 25 years and he'd love to ban them but he needs proof, and even if they were marking cards the burn card should make that relatively useless as far as them knowing the outcome of the hands. But states the next Monday he'll put in a fresh deck and check it throughout the day to see if anything is going on.

    I stop playing there at this point because I've had my fill. But two weeks after notifying the manager I hear from a friend that both Cubans were escorted out by security and given a lifetime ban! I then notify the manager at Best Bet Jacksonville because both Cubans have been wearing hats from there, who lets me know they had been banned a couple weeks prior.

    The manager at TGT lets me know they were "banned for multiple reasons" but I never get any clarification to exactly what they were doing. I've been told by others it's suspected they were marking the edges of cards, so by being in seats 1 and 6 they could see both sides of the deck the dealer has. Whatever the case, these guys travel around, heard they've been to Texas, etc. so hopefully this will help keep others from getting cheated by these scumbags

    I don't know their names and I didn't take these pics but had someone send them to me (pics taken pre-covid obviously as we are required to wear masks at the table these days)

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  2. #2

    Exclamation

    IMO, the Fla. cash games are infested with angle shooters, cheaters and scumbags than any other state including MS. & Calif.

    From 1000's & 1,000's of hrs in all...Vegas cleanest games,MN clean...
    You must remember that Poker is Gambling and no matter how much you white-wash it and make it seem respectable , it always caters to the people of all ilk's that have not the scruples or morals most of you maintain.....IMO.....
    gd post kid... Some more pics...they probably at Hialeah now. bet.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by shoeshine box View Post
    IMO, the Fla. cash games are infested with angle shooters, cheaters and scumbags than any other state including MS. & Calif.

    From 1000's & 1,000's of hrs in all...Vegas cleanest games,MN clean...
    You must remember that Poker is Gambling and no matter how much you white-wash it and make it seem respectable , it always caters to the people of all ilk's that have not the scruples or morals most of you maintain.....IMO.....
    gd post kid... Some more pics...they probably at Hialeah now. bet.

    I put the word out and their pics on multiple facebook and florida poker groups so hopefully they won't get a seat anywhere. I play in the Tampa area and overall the players in the PLO pool aren't all that scummy. We have our share of course, but overall most are pretty decent. It's a smaller pool than hold em obviously so you see a lot of the same faces over and over.

  4. #4
    Bronze mdj1980's Avatar
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    Very interesting thread...
    I live close to Tampa Bay Downs so mostly play there, but I have been to TGT several times. (Never played PLO there though).
    It is quite a "throwback" place...for anyone reading this thread who is not familiar with it, imagine an old, brick greyhound track that was built around 90 years ago in what is now one of the sktechiest parts of town, and hasn't had live racing in years...but still clings to life with simulcasting and a 15-or-so table poker room (usually with 1-2 tables running...4 or 5 is probably a very busy night for them). My favorite part of the place is the sign near the employee entrance that asks the employees to please not feed the stray cats that have come to call the overgrown, abandoned racetrack portion of the facility their home.
    Good to hear that you usually got out of there by 4:00, for your own safety!

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by mdj1980 View Post
    Very interesting thread...
    I live close to Tampa Bay Downs so mostly play there, but I have been to TGT several times. (Never played PLO there though).
    It is quite a "throwback" place...for anyone reading this thread who is not familiar with it, imagine an old, brick greyhound track that was built around 90 years ago in what is now one of the sktechiest parts of town, and hasn't had live racing in years...but still clings to life with simulcasting and a 15-or-so table poker room (usually with 1-2 tables running...4 or 5 is probably a very busy night for them). My favorite part of the place is the sign near the employee entrance that asks the employees to please not feed the stray cats that have come to call the overgrown, abandoned racetrack portion of the facility their home.
    Good to hear that you usually got out of there by 4:00, for your own safety!

    I mean, as bad an area as it's in, I think I've heard about shootings at Derby Lane in St Pete and then someone getting followed home from the private game at Silks in Tampa and shot, but haven't heard any stories like that from TGT. I actually liked the dealers there, friendly and competent compared to Hard Rock Tampa which has it's share of great and friendly staff, but also some less stellar ones in the mix as well.

    I generally left around 4pm because the wife enjoys having supper together and by that time some players are stuck and the game can get ridiculously crazy with people going nuts on the restraddles, and I'm just not rolled to play 80/160 PLO with a max 1K buyin lol

  6. #6
    Bronze mdj1980's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kn1sh View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by mdj1980 View Post
    Very interesting thread...
    I live close to Tampa Bay Downs so mostly play there, but I have been to TGT several times. (Never played PLO there though).
    It is quite a "throwback" place...for anyone reading this thread who is not familiar with it, imagine an old, brick greyhound track that was built around 90 years ago in what is now one of the sktechiest parts of town, and hasn't had live racing in years...but still clings to life with simulcasting and a 15-or-so table poker room (usually with 1-2 tables running...4 or 5 is probably a very busy night for them). My favorite part of the place is the sign near the employee entrance that asks the employees to please not feed the stray cats that have come to call the overgrown, abandoned racetrack portion of the facility their home.
    Good to hear that you usually got out of there by 4:00, for your own safety!

    I mean, as bad an area as it's in, I think I've heard about shootings at Derby Lane in St Pete and then someone getting followed home from the private game at Silks in Tampa and shot, but haven't heard any stories like that from TGT. I actually liked the dealers there, friendly and competent compared to Hard Rock Tampa which has it's share of great and friendly staff, but also some less stellar ones in the mix as well.

    I generally left around 4pm because the wife enjoys having supper together and by that time some players are stuck and the game can get ridiculously crazy with people going nuts on the restraddles, and I'm just not rolled to play 80/160 PLO with a max 1K buyin lol
    That's true, Derby Lane did have the shooting (I never really heard a full story on that, did you? I just remember Todd, on the radio show, reading the lol part of the story where whoever got shot drove to Applebees). I've heard of people getting followed home from the Hard Rock (which is not in a great area either). And even though Tampa Bay Downs is in a better area, I still watch very carefully when I go back out to my car late at night, since there is generally no one around and not much security other than the one cop that sits up in the poker room, and he would never be able to help you in time in the parking lot if something happened. But...if I had to walk around the block of any of them at midnight, TGT would definitely not be my first choice.

    I agree with you on the dealers...almost all the dealers and staff I've seen at TGT and Tampa Bay Downs have been friendly and competent, whereas Derby Lane and the Hard Rock are more of a mixed bag.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by mdj1980 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Kn1sh View Post


    I mean, as bad an area as it's in, I think I've heard about shootings at Derby Lane in St Pete and then someone getting followed home from the private game at Silks in Tampa and shot, but haven't heard any stories like that from TGT. I actually liked the dealers there, friendly and competent compared to Hard Rock Tampa which has it's share of great and friendly staff, but also some less stellar ones in the mix as well.

    I generally left around 4pm because the wife enjoys having supper together and by that time some players are stuck and the game can get ridiculously crazy with people going nuts on the restraddles, and I'm just not rolled to play 80/160 PLO with a max 1K buyin lol
    That's true, Derby Lane did have the shooting (I never really heard a full story on that, did you? I just remember Todd, on the radio show, reading the lol part of the story where whoever got shot drove to Applebees). I've heard of people getting followed home from the Hard Rock (which is not in a great area either). And even though Tampa Bay Downs is in a better area, I still watch very carefully when I go back out to my car late at night, since there is generally no one around and not much security other than the one cop that sits up in the poker room, and he would never be able to help you in time in the parking lot if something happened. But...if I had to walk around the block of any of them at midnight, TGT would definitely not be my first choice.

    I agree with you on the dealers...almost all the dealers and staff I've seen at TGT and Tampa Bay Downs have been friendly and competent, whereas Derby Lane and the Hard Rock are more of a mixed bag.

    I had a REALLY weird thing happen to me pre-covid at the Hard Rock. Was parked in Elite Parking in the Draper Garage (closest to the poker room). I have the elite fob to gain access, but they had been having problems with the gate so it was wide open, so anyone could get in or out. It was a Saturday and I think I was only there from noon - 5pm before I left. I had backed into my parking spot, so hop into my car and start driving. When I get on the highway I start hearing and feeling a "thump thump thump" and I'm thinking what the hell is this? So I pull over to check my tires, had just gotten an oil change and rotation recently. I get to the rear passenger side and my whole fucking wheel has been changed!

    Someone stole my rim and tire (which was the stock 19" blacked-out rim for the Maxima SR) and replaced it with a cheapo 17-inch rim off an Altima, AND they only put 2 of the 5 lug nuts on the fucker! So I head back to the casino and report it to security, who call the Seminole Police to take a report. Now of course my story sounds absolutely crazy because who would steal ONE rim AND replace it with a different tire? I mean.......Florida Man?

    So the police come to take my report and they have to check the cameras to make sure I actually drove into their garage with all four matching rims. I'm also told that where my car was parked they only had camera view at leg level in the road area so they couldn't see the wheel being removed from my car. Anyway, they take the report and I wind up following up another day. They do see a coupe leaving the garage with mismatched rims and they get the license on it...................but it's stolen so they have zero idea who was in the car and my case is listed as inactive because they have no further leads. ugh.



    Now moving on, I just got a call from a buddy yesterday who gave me a story he heard about the Cubans again. At least one of them supposedly went in disguise to Best Bet Jacksonville and was using another players card to play on in the poker room. Some players there confronted him and he admitted he had been banned but claimed he didn't cheat, and I guess one of the big dudes dragged him out of the poker room and beat the shit out of him, like kicked his teeth in and shit! I'm going to post in the poker facebook groups and see if anyone has more details on it, but karma's a bitch!

  8. #8
    Owner Dan Druff's Avatar
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    Kn1sh, would you like to come on PFA Radio on Friday night and talk about this?

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Druff View Post
    Kn1sh, would you like to come on PFA Radio on Friday night and talk about this?

    Sure thing, I'll shoot you a PM!

  10. #10
    Owner Dan Druff's Avatar
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    Did a segment about this on Poker Fraud Alert Radio, and Kn1sh was interviewed.

    https://pokerfraudalert.com/forum/sh...rder-From-Hell

    Go to 3:28:44 mark. You'll even get to hear me singing at the beginning.

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Druff View Post
    Did a segment about this on Poker Fraud Alert Radio, and Kn1sh was interviewed.

    https://pokerfraudalert.com/forum/sh...rder-From-Hell

    Go to 3:28:44 mark. You'll even get to hear me singing at the beginning.
    Thanks for having me on Todd, loved the song, had me rolling! Let me know when the album drops, need to bounce that noise as I drive through the hood looking for juicy PLO games to get cheated at!

  12. #12
    Just an update. Spoke to another player who stated he was informed the way they marked the cards was to use their nails to mark the edges in positions on the cards that denoted the value of the card. So based on where the card was marked they could determine if it was a King, a deuce, etc. So that appears to be what to watch for.

  13. #13
    I think I saw two individuals doing the same routine in Texas. Both Spanish speakers in the one and six seats.

    The guy in the 6 seat was doing quite well before I got there. He went all in on one hand right after I got there with AK with no pair on the flop, hit a king and beat the other guys top pair.

    The individual with the ball cap in the one seat kept suspiciously tilting his head down and looking directly at the dealers cards. I was in the five seat and leaned down to meet his gaze on purpose when checking my cards a few times. By the looks he gave back he knew that I knew what he was trying to do.

    I saw a couple of damaged cards on one hand, possibly marked and damaged after a hand in the muck and called them out as damaged. With no provocation the guy in the six seat said something like "yeah those are bad ones"; almost as if to agree and make himself look good because he was calling out the damaged cards with me.

    I then began to observe individual in the six seat was the individual marking the cards. I called out the obvious edge mark when he made it and tossed his hand in to fold. He said something like "oh sorry". After that they both started acting odd and taking long breaks. Additionally if a dealer with larger hands that covered the card edges deals they seemed to not do as well.

    I'm almost 100 percent sure these guys were up to no good. I had to rack up and leave after a while. If I see them around doing the same routine I'll know it and call it out to the management.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by jokerswild View Post
    I think I saw two individuals doing the same routine in Texas. Both Spanish speakers in the one and six seats.

    The guy in the 6 seat was doing quite well before I got there. He went all in on one hand right after I got there with AK with no pair on the flop, hit a king and beat the other guys top pair.

    The individual with the ball cap in the one seat kept suspiciously tilting his head down and looking directly at the dealers cards. I was in the five seat and leaned down to meet his gaze on purpose when checking my cards a few times. By the looks he gave back he knew that I knew what he was trying to do.

    I saw a couple of damaged cards on one hand, possibly marked and damaged after a hand in the muck and called them out as damaged. With no provocation the guy in the six seat said something like "yeah those are bad ones"; almost as if to agree and make himself look good because he was calling out the damaged cards with me.

    I then began to observe individual in the six seat was the individual marking the cards. I called out the obvious edge mark when he made it and tossed his hand in to fold. He said something like "oh sorry". After that they both started acting odd and taking long breaks. Additionally if a dealer with larger hands that covered the card edges deals they seemed to not do as well.

    I'm almost 100 percent sure these guys were up to no good. I had to rack up and leave after a while. If I see them around doing the same routine I'll know it and call it out to the management.
    Here in Tampa they both definitely took frequent breaks from the table together. Perhaps tied in to waiting for specific dealers to be in rotation that might not be as careful with squaring the deck, and certainly to snort coke in the bathrooms from the stories I've heard from players and dealers.

    And I did hear they've made the rounds in Texas previously so doesn't surprise me you would've ran into them.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Kn1sh View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by jokerswild View Post
    I think I saw two individuals doing the same routine in Texas. Both Spanish speakers in the one and six seats.

    The guy in the 6 seat was doing quite well before I got there. He went all in on one hand right after I got there with AK with no pair on the flop, hit a king and beat the other guys top pair.

    The individual with the ball cap in the one seat kept suspiciously tilting his head down and looking directly at the dealers cards. I was in the five seat and leaned down to meet his gaze on purpose when checking my cards a few times. By the looks he gave back he knew that I knew what he was trying to do.

    I saw a couple of damaged cards on one hand, possibly marked and damaged after a hand in the muck and called them out as damaged. With no provocation the guy in the six seat said something like "yeah those are bad ones"; almost as if to agree and make himself look good because he was calling out the damaged cards with me.

    I then began to observe individual in the six seat was the individual marking the cards. I called out the obvious edge mark when he made it and tossed his hand in to fold. He said something like "oh sorry". After that they both started acting odd and taking long breaks. Additionally if a dealer with larger hands that covered the card edges deals they seemed to not do as well.

    I'm almost 100 percent sure these guys were up to no good. I had to rack up and leave after a while. If I see them around doing the same routine I'll know it and call it out to the management.
    Here in Tampa they both definitely took frequent breaks from the table together. Perhaps tied in to waiting for specific dealers to be in rotation that might not be as careful with squaring the deck, and certainly to snort coke in the bathrooms from the stories I've heard from players and dealers.

    And I did hear they've made the rounds in Texas previously so doesn't surprise me you would've ran into them.

    Interesting. Probably was them. The nail edge marking is exactly what they were doing. The guy in seat six to my left seemed to be mostly occupied with watching music videos of girls twerking on his phone. The guy in seat one didn't seem to be a very good player; I remember him getting stacked shortly before I left.

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