Las VegasIt wasn't the biggest or fanciest place on the Las Vegas strip, but Bill's Gamblin' Hall is beloved by a certain sort of poker and blackjack player. That era ends on February 4 as Caesars Entertainment Corp begins a $185 million renovation, turning the divey, boozy space into a modern gaming spot complete with nightclub and rooftop pool.  Originally the Barbary Coast Hotel and Casino, Bill's was given its current look and feel by Harrah's in 2007.

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"This project exemplifies our strategy to develop new experiences that will help attract a broader spectrum of visitors to Las Vegas and our properties," Caesars Entertainment Chairman Gary Loveman wrote in a press release. "The renovated property will provide visitors with a sophisticated, upscale experience, including a unique rooftop pool and club, which will have a panoramic view of the Las Vegas Strip."It's understandable that they want to go with a new design that's more appealing to the masses, but the old-school feel and cheap (as in $.50/$1) cash games offered up by the poker room there are going to be missed.The InternetDan Smith is still maintaining his comfortable lead over the rest of the pack in the Global Poker Index, resting a comfortable 250 points ahead of second-placer Jason Mercier. There was no movement in the top ten, but below that, new players were added while others were dropped with some big gains and losses too. New players include Matt Stout (206th); Salvatore Bonavena (217th); Paul Lieu (231st); Carla Solinas (286th); Ravi Raghavan; (288th) and Matt Matros (291st).The biggest gains in the GPI included Christian Harder's 61-place leap to 97th and Kenny Hicks finishing in 197th after going up fifty-seven places, but it was Jake Bazeley's 78-point rise that surprised everyone. Bazeley's been a fixture in the lower echelons on the list since it began, but his runner-up showing at the Heartland Poker Tour Main Event in Florence, Indiana helped him leap solidly into the middle tier of the list.

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With the World Poker Tour Montreal event now wrapped up, there will definitely be some movement in the list next week. Jeff Gross, who finished third, is going to get a nice upward boost and Gavin Smith is likely going to be back in the top 100 thanks to his fourth-place finish. Some WSOP 2012 results are going to begin to age and thus have their relative worth decreased, which means that Vanessa Selbst, Daniel Negreanu and others are going to see a few points knocked off their overall score.Related Posts:The Rundown: Poker News  for November 12, 2012The Rundown: Poker News for November 19, 2012