Video Emerges Of Possible Deck Rigging At Houston Poker Room

A video taken at Legends Poker Room in Houston has people questioning whether or not a cash game dealer was rigging the deck. [Image:]

Does not look good When one sits down at a table in a poker room, thoughts of possible cheating tend to revolve around other players. In the case of Legends Poker Room in Houston, though, it is the dealers that are currently under the microscope. On Tuesday, poker pro Shaun Deeb posted a video – followed up by a clearer one on Wednesday – showing what he and others believe is a dealer rigging the deck.

I got a better quality video I have spoken to a floor person of legends who confirmed multiple dealers were fired for messing with the decks in the past month I am disappointed that no players were caught and the dealers were not prosecuted or outed so they can go do it elsewhere

— shaun deeb (@shaundeeb) May 1, 2024 At first glance, there is nothing obviously wrong about the dealer’s shuffle if one doesn’t look closely. But upon further inspection, it looks like it could be a fake shuffle.

One of the riffles is blocked by the person taking the video, but in the other riffles, it appears as if the dealer never actually combines the two halves of the deck. He begins to slide the halves together, but then pulls them apart and riffles again. In one, he only touches the corners of the halves together. By doing this – if that is what is happening – the dealer can keep cards in a specific spot in the deck to manipulate the deal.

Poker community reacts This 18-second video is by no means definitive proof of cheating. It is not likely to be a single, poorly shuffled hand, otherwise nobody would have made the effort to film it. It could simply be a case of a dealer who doesn’t know how to properly shuffle and being caught in a particularly lazy instance.

But poker players who have watched the video at the very least raise a sharp eyebrow and many immediately pegged it as blatant deck rigging.

If I saw this live, I would be very concerned.”

“Look at the clumping, it appears intentional,” one commenter on X said. “Also he slides a ‘riffled’ section right out of the riffle and slaps it on top like he cut (false shuffle/cut). If I saw this live, I would be very concerned.”

“How’s nobody noticed he doesn’t actually shuffle?” another person asked. “So obvious he’s pulling the decks apart instead of pushing them together after each shuffle.”

Four-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner and World Poker Tour champ Scott Seiver called it “amateur hour.”

But why? Beyond the determination of whether or not the dealer was actually rigging the deck – further investigation will be necessary to figure this out – the next question is: why would someone do this? And according to Deeb, there is a history of this at Legends. As he said in the post with the better quality video: “I have spoken to a floor person of legends who confirmed multiple dealers were fired for messing with the decks.”

The most obvious reason for a dealer to rig the deck would be that he is colluding with a player or players at the table. Similar to the police game scene in the movie Rounders, the dealer might arrange the cards so as to give one player a strong hand and his player accomplice a stronger one to allow them to win a big pot. They would later split the money.

A lesser-considered possibility was brought up by a couple people on X, and that is juicing the action for the benefit of the poker room. Noah Carbone, the Poker Director at Palm Beach Kennel Club, said that if the poker room has a high hand or bad beat jackpot, the dealer could be trying to improve the chances of a jackpot hitting. Another person opined that the dealer could actually be trying to help a player win to get them to want to keep playing, thus keeping the rake flowing.