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A Look At The Upcoming Native American Casino Poker Tour With Ken Lambert

Lambert Gives Details On The Upcoming Inaugural NACPT Series This December


Ken LambertKen Lambert got started in the casino business as a busboy when he was just 16 years old at Binion’s Horseshoe in Las Vegas. When he turned 21, he moved onto dealing cards and then helped open the Mirage Casino before becoming the Poker Room Manager at the Horseshoe in Tunica, Mississippi.

In Tunica, Lambert helped make the World Poker Open one of the marquee events on the World Poker Tour. After Harrah’s bought the Horseshoe in 2004, Lambert was asked to become the Director of the World Series of Poker and spent a year traveling on the newly created WSOP Circuit.

After that experience, Lambert moved on to MGM Resorts working at Mississippi properties in both Tunica and Biloxi. Recently, he took over as Poker Room Manager for the Choctaw Casino Resort in Durant, Oklahoma. Now he’s all set to help kick off the first stop of the inaugural season of the Card Player Native American Casino Poker Tour this December.

We had a chance to talk to Lambert about the upcoming event.

Julio Rodriguez: Can you tell me a little bit about the upcoming NACPT series?

Ken Lambert: The schedule for the 20-event series was just released and I’ve already been getting calls. One thing I have to clarify is that you don’t have to be Native American to play in the Card Player Native American Poker Tour, but one of the added benefits of holding the series in a casino like Choctaw is that you only have to be 18 years old to participate. We feel that with a schedule that includes buy-ins that range from $125 to $1,000, we’re really offering something that’s affordable for everyone.

JR: Can you tell me a little bit about your poker room and how it will change for the series?

KL: Right now, our card room houses 30 poker tables and will be where our live action games run during the series. We have also added an additional 35 tables for tournaments to Center Stage, which is one of our ballroom spaces here at Choctaw. Our goal was to have enough room to not only run the series tournaments, but also accommodate cash games and satellites simultaneously as well.

JR: What kind of satellites will you be offering leading up to the main event?

KL: We’re going to run single table satellites to all of the events during the series and those will go every day. For the main event, we’ll also be running super satellites with rebuys and a mega satellite with no rebuys. There are plenty of options for those who want to win their way in.

JR: What kind of turnout are you expecting for the main event?

KL: Just based on the response I’ve gotten so far, and keep in mind, it’s pretty early, I’m anticipating a field of at least 300 for the main event. The players know that the final table will be reported and streamed live on along with commentary by Dennis Phillips.

The winner of the tournament will also get put on the cover of Card Player Magazine and will receive a seat to our World Series of Poker Circuit main event in January, so I think that added value as well as our facilities will draw in a lot of players.

JR: Where can non-locals who want to play in the event stay during the series?

KL: There are two hotels at the casino, The Inn and The Tower, which is the newest property here at Choctaw. All players who participate in the tournament series will have a discounted rate of $59 during the week and $79 during the weekend at The Inn and $69 during the week and $99 during the weekend at The Tower.

Here is a look at the schedule for the inaugural series.

Tournament Date Duration Buy-in
Event 1 – No-Limit Hold’em 1-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 2 – No-Limit Hold’em 1-Dec 1 $100 + $25
Event 3 – No-Limit Hold’em 2-Dec 1 $270 + $30
Event 4 – No-Limit Hold’em 2-Dec 1 $150 + $25
Event 5 – No-Limit Hold’em 3-Dec 2 $270 + $30
Event 6 – No-Limit Hold’em 3-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 7 – No-Limit Hold’em 4-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 8 – Limit Omaha 8/OB 4-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 9 – No-Limit Hold’em 5-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 10 – No-Limit Hold’em 5-Dec 1 $100 + $25
Event 11 – No-Limit Hold’em 6-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 12 – No-Limit Hold’em 6-Dec 1 $100 + $25
Event 13 – No-Limit Hold’em 7-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 14 – Limit Omaha 8/OB 7-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 15 – No-Limit Hold’em 8-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 16 – Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Dec 2 $270 + $30
Event 17 – No-Limit Hold’em Turbo 9-Dec 1 $270 + $30
Main Event 10-Dec 2 $1,000
Event 19 – No-Limit Hold’em 10-Dec 1 $175 + $25
Event 20 – No-Limit Hold’em 11-Dec 1 $100 + $25