Ivey Countersues Borgata – Taj Braces For Union Strike

Lawsuits and strikes have been the main headlines of the week in Atlantic City. One of world’s top poker pros, Phil Ivey, has countersued the Borgata over claims he cheated at Baccarat in 2012.

Meanwhile, union workers at the Trump Taj Mahal are organizing to strike but the casino is taking proactive measures to keep the casino operational with minimal interruptions.

Phil Ivey countersues Borgata

Many of you know about the lawsuit from the Borgata against Phil Ivey alleging that Ivey won over $9 million playing Baccarat using a play advantage technique known as edge sorting.

ESPN now reports that Ivey and his legal team have countersued the Borgata claiming the casino had destroyed the cards that were used during the game. The countersuit further contends that the Borgata was aware that the cards were flawed. It also contends that special requests made by high rollers were not uncommon and that Ivey never touched the cards in question.

The suit states that the Borgata had a duty of care to keep the cards in question and that “Borgata knew that those playing cards were critically material to Ivey and Sun’s defense, and knew further that destruction of those playing cards would render the defendants irrevocably prejudice in defending against plaintiff’s claims and in securing judgment against the plaintiff.”

Ivey has claimed in the past that he did not cheat and that edge sorting was a legitimate strategy. Last year, the Crockfords casino in London was allowed to withhold $12 million in winnings from Ivey for a similar tactic in Punto Banco. The High Court ruled that Ivey’s actions were cheating and Borgata is hoping that ruling helps them win their case.

Strike imminent at Trump Taj Mahal

The strife between the Local 54 of UNITE HERE and the Trump Taj Mahal has reached new levels as the union is threatening to strike over their lost health care benefits and pensions.

According to the Press of Atlantic City, Local 54 President Bob McDevitt claims that a strike vote could come any day now and that the union is on a “day to day schedule.” The last strike by Taj employees came in 2004 when 10,000 service workers striked for over a month.

The Taj is taking proactive measures to prevent an interruption in services at the casino. According to a memo from Trump Entertainment, the company has hired a staffing firm to cover several hundred jobs and they have job applications on hand to fill long-term roles at the casino.

Union workers voted on July 16 to authorize a strike committee but a vote has yet to be reached. Local 54 is attempting to have a decision to strip union worker pensions and health care overturned, presently appealing to the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Those benefits were stripped as part of a plan to save the Trump Taj Mahal in Atlantic City from becoming the fifth casino to shut down in 2014.

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