NJCOOP champ Jesse Elliott is in contention to win the PokerStars Festival New Jersey Main Event. Travell Thomas pleads guilty to crimes related to a debt collection scam. Caesars Atlantic City testing out “Danger Arena.” And more.

The Online/Offline King of New Jersey?

Although he’s “only” the tenth-rated player in New Jersey at the moment, Jesse “No_Xcape” Elliott is looking to make a strong statement by pulling off an unusual and rather difficult back-to-back performance. Having just won the Main Event of the inaugural PokerStars New Jersey Championship of Online Poker (NJCOOP), he now finds himself in contention to repeat that performance in the live arena; he’s one of only 23 players to have made the third day of the PokerStars Festival New Jersey Main Event. Like the NJCOOP, this PokerStars Festival is the first of its kind, so to come out on top of both would be a nice way for Elliott to have his name go down in New Jersey poker history and establish himself as the guy to beat.

In an interview with Lance Bradley for PocketFives, Elliott says that he nearly didn’t attend the festival, but after chopping a tournament at the Borgata, he decided he was on a heater and would have to keep going and see where it takes him.

Quick Hitters

Travell Thomas had pleaded guilty to crimes relating to his involvement in a debt collection scam which robbed its victims of approximately $31 million. He has thrown himself on the judge’s mercy, but runs the risk of being sentenced to up to fifteen and a half years in prison, and/or forfeiture of up to the entire $31 million, which is presumably much more than he actually has.

Caesars Atlantic City has rolled out “Danger Arena,” the first skill-based casino gambling machine. It’s a first-person shooter, where killing six or more robots before being killed oneself earns progressively larger cash prizes. Clare Fitzgerald, who writes for the Casino City Times, got to try it out and gave it the thumbs up.

– PTP’s own Steve Ruddock penned a piece for Online Poker Report today, warning Pennsylvania poker fans not to hold their breath on regulatory legislation being passed any time soon.

– On a related note, James Guill at PokerUpdate gave his take on why so many US poker players make the risky decision to play on unregulated sites. High on the list is precisely this frustration with the glacial pace at which even relatively permissive states are moving towards legal, regulated online poker.