Phil Ivey’s search for a gambling edge has got him into another round of legal trouble as the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City has sued him for $9.6m.
The Borgata alleges that Ivey cheated when he exploited an “edge sorting” technique to secure an odds advantage at Baccarat.
Ivey admitted to edge sorting, a technique by which one can identify the rank of cards that were improperly cut by the manufacturer, at Crockfords Casino in London—the two remain in litigation over the payment of his £7.8m winnings.
At the Borgata, Ivey allegedly demanded specific arrangements, including an automatic shuffle machine, before playing several sessions in the Spring and Summer of 2012. When the Crockford’s allegations surfaced, the Borgata discussed Ivey with him, but allowed him to play.
The Borgata denies Ivey’s claims that he asked for the arrangements because he was superstitious. The casino argues that the “true motive, intention and purpose in negotiating these playing arrangements was to create a situation in which he could surreptitiously manipulate what he knew to be a defect in the playing cards in order to gain an unfair advantage.”
Player debate on the issue is divided—-some admire Phil Ivey for finding a way to secure an information advantage over the casino, others feel his behavior was unethical. It will be for the courts in New Jersey to determine whether what he did was legal.