Lock Poker Exits Revolution, Launches Solo-Site Network
Troubled online poker site Lock Poker is back in the news today, announcing that it will be leaving the beleagured Revolution Network and continuing on as a solo entity, effective immediately. Lock officials sent out a brief press release today to its own affiliate sites and selected media outlets that read, in part:
“Many exciting changes will be coming as Lock moves to it [sic] own platform and steps away from the network model. Lock has elected to exercise its right to terminate the contract as a result of what they cite are ‘numerous and ongoing breaches of contract by the current network operator.’
Why Lock was quoting itself about contract breaches in an otherwise unattributed press release remains unexplained, but hey, it’s Lock… or as they now want to be called, LockPoker 2.0. Lock’s departure from Revolution may be more them being booted from the network rather than them actually stepping away as claimed, given the site’s horrible history and a current backlog of unpaid cashout requests that are nearing 12 months old in many cases.
Lock has been widely accused of looting player deposits and failing to honor its reconcilitiation debts to other sites and networks, and according to a post by 2+2 veteran insider “khantrutahn” today, Lock still owes the rest of the Revolution Network a “low eight figures” in reconciliation payments. $10 to $20 million, perhaps? Regrettably, that fits in with the overall picture of the financial mess Lock Poker has created.
Lock has failed to make timely payments to its players for more than a year, even as Lock CEO Jen Larson and other company insiders have treated themselves to lavish retreats and other lifestyle perks, and the site has spent exorbitantly on a lengthy roster of sponsored pros, many who have fled the site in recent months.
Among the latest defectees was one of Lock’s biggest names, professional sponsorship whore Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi, who has rarely turned his back on any would-be sponsor willing to spend a buck. And yet even Mizrachi has now fled the Lock family.
Even though Lock seems to be running its new site (already operational) on a variant of the existing Revolution Network software, the split didn’t go without a hitch. Former Lock players who attempted to log in to the Revolution Network today were redirected to a competing site called Pure Poker, which has promised to take over existing Lock balances for those players who would rather stay on Revolution than continue with Lock. The deal offered by the new Pure Poker site appears to include a play-through requirement, and it’s still unclear who actually owns that skin, but the possibility of players having any sort of alternative in getting their funds off of Lock has to be viewed as a positive development.
Lock remains one of online poker’s most historic disasters, having been booted from two separate networks before landing at Revolution in a supposed co-ownership, where it claimed to have acquired the network — then called the Cake Network after its original site, Cake Poker — this after having previously been booted from both Cake and the rival Merge Network earlier for network violations. It turned out that Lock either never had the money to complete the co-ownership deal, as it originally claimed, or simply squandered the operational revenue from what was at one time after Black Friday one of the largest US-facing sites.
Whether the “new beginning” turns out to be a “last hurrah” remains anyone’s guess, though a small handful of very suspect affiliates have continued to actively promote the site, perhaps leading innocent, new players in online poker to an unnecessary financial slaughter. Until Lock makes good on the extensive backlog of cashout requests already known to exist, there’s no reason to trust the site, no matter what claims are made.
CalvinAyre.com, in a wry commentary on the situation, duly noted that “All points, tournament tickets and such will be ported over to the new platform to ensure future unclaimability.” Heh. CA has been one of the leading critics of Lock and its CEO, Larson, and while CA often mixes in a good deal of sour grapes in its bashing of competitors, to date they’ve been smack on the mark with their criticisms of Lock.