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  1. 888poker LIVE’s first-ever trip to Madrid concluded this week with Italy’s Marco Biavashi taking down the €800,000 GTD Main Event for a career-high score of €150,000 plus a package to compete in the 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event. The 2020 888poker LIVE Madrid Main Event saw 1,067 entries pack the Casino Gran Via Madrid with hopes of making the final table and potentially picking up a six-figure score. After two days of play, the third and final day of the tournament turned into a long one. It was a 15-hour grind which saw Biavashi, who won his Main Event entry in a €100 satellite, overcome a short stack and eventually outlast an aggressive heads-up opponent in Kazakhstan’s Daniyar Aubakirov to take home the trophy. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Players had already played nearly nine hours on Day 3 before 2016 WSOP Main Event final table participant Fernando Pons was eliminated in tenth place, just missing out on the final table. After a break, the final nine drew for seats and got to the business of determining a champion. By this point in the tournament, the stacks were shallow with the chip leader holding just 32 big blinds. The bustouts got started when Spain’s Ruben de Pedro shipped his short stack holding [poker card="as"][poker card="5s"] only to be looked up by fellow Spaniard Miguel Tejero’s [poker card="qs"][poker card="qd"] in the big blind. The [poker card="7s"][poker card="7d"][poker card="4c"][poker card="9h"][poker card="4d"] board ran out clean for pocket queens and de Pedro hit the rail in ninth place for €11,200. Despite an abundance of short stacks, play dragged on with the next elimination coming nearly two hours after the first. Israel’s Ran Shahar, who entered the final table with a top three stack, got involved in a big hand with Spain’s David Gonzalez Delgado where his second pair-top kicker fell to a gutshot straight on the river. Shahar settled for a €14,000 payday for eighth place. Minutes later Shahar’s countryman Gilad Yam-Hod followed him to the cage. After Daniyar Aubakirov put in a raise, Yam-Hod three-bet shipped his stack with the [poker card="7d"][poker card="6d"] only to be called by Aubakirov’s [poker card="ts"][poker card="tc"]. The board provided little drama as it came [poker card="ah"][poker card="kd"][poker card="jh"][poker card="kh"][poker card="td"], giving Aubakirov a full house. Yam-Hod picked up €18,000 for seventh place. Now, the eliminations came a little more quickly. Marco D’Amico moved all-in with his short stack holding [poker card="qs"][poker card="qd"] and was called in the big blind by Delgado and his [poker card="9h"][poker card="9c"]. Although D’Amico was in great shape to double-up, the cards did not cooperate as the board ran out [poker card="tc"][poker card="8h"][poker card="4c"][poker card="6h"][poker card="7s"] giving Delgado a runner-runner straight and eliminating D’Amico in sixth place for €24,000. A big pot took place on the very next hand when Aubakirov raised from the cutoff with [poker card="6h"][poker card="6d"] only to be shoved on by Tejero and his [poker card="ad"][poker card="jc"]. After getting a count, Aubakirov kept up his aggression and made the call leaving Tejero to flip for his tournament life. The board ran out [poker card="9d"][poker card="8c"][poker card="3h"][poker card="tc"][poker card="th"], providing Tejero no help and sending to collect his €32,000 for his fifth-place run. At this point Aubakirov was stacking chips and building a massive lead. He had well over 50% of the chips in play when Biavaschi finally eliminated his first opponent of the final table. Spain’s Pablo Paez picked a spot and shipped his eight big blind stack in the middle with [poker card="ts"][poker card="9s"]. From the small blind Biavaschi made the call holding [poker card="kc"][poker card="qs"]. The [poker card="4s"][poker card="4d"][poker card="3h"][poker card="4c"][poker card="5d"] board provided no help to either player which meant that Biavaschi took the hand with king-high and Paez’s deep run ended in fourth place for €45,000. Less than ten minutes later Delgado couldn’t hold on any longer. Three-handed, he moved in his short stack from the button with [poker card="9c"][poker card="7h"] only to be called in the big blind by Aubakirov and his [poker card="td"][poker card="8c"]. Aubakirov spiked middle pair on the [poker card="kd"][poker card="th"][poker card="2s"]. The [poker card="8s"] turn gave Aubakirov two pair but also gave Delgado life to an open-ended straight draw. However, the [poker card="2c"] was a brick and David Gonzalez Delgado fell in third place for €70,000. Despite starting at a chip deficit when heads-up play began, Biavashi closed the gap and eventually picked up a number of big hands in a row to take the lead. At one point it looked like Biavashi had the tournament won, he even began to celebrate a little, but Aubakirov found a double and continued to play tough. Eventually, with Aubakirov very short, Biavashi finished the job. Aubakirov made his stand with [poker card="kc"][poker card="2h"] and was called by Biavashi holding [poker card="qc"][poker card="td"]. The flop came [poker card="qh"][poker card="tc"][poker card="8c"] giving Biavashi two pair and Aubakirov some back door possibilities. The [poker card="2d"] hit the turn, giving Aubakirov some new outs but the [poker card="5d"] river closed the door. Aubakirov finished at the runner-up, booking a €105,000 score. After winning his way into the tournament on a €100 satellite, Marco Biavaschi was crowned the 2020 888poker LIVE Madrid Main Event winner, earning €150,000 and a trip to Las Vegas to play in the 2020 World Series of Poker worth $12,500. 888poker LIVE Madrid Main Event Final Table 1. Marco Biavaschi - €150,000 2. Daniyar Aubakirov - €105,000 3. David Gonzalez Delgado - €70,000 4. Pablo Paez - €45,000 5. Miguel Tejero - €32,000 6. Marco D’Amico - €24,000 7. Gilad Yam-Hod - €18,000 8. Ran Shahar - €14,000 9. Ruben De Pedro - €11,200
  2. The slow rollout of the 2020 World Series of Poker schedule continued on Wednesday as WSOP announced its complete high roller schedule for the upcoming summer series at Las Vegas’ Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. A total of nine tournaments with a buy-in of at least $25,000 will stretch across the 51-day schedule of the 51st Annual WSOP which will take place from May 26 through July 15. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="BetMGM NJ"] “We have something for everyone on the 2020 World Series of Poker schedule and the high rollers are no exception,” said World Series of Poker Vice President Jack Effel. “The High Roller Series are great spectacles for the fans and a challenging series of events is sure to bring out the game’s best and those looking to take them on.” The ‘9-pack’ high roller series kicks off in the first week of the WSOP with a $25K NLHE starting on May 29. Three of the high rollers have a buy-in of $25K. Another four include a $50,000 price tag, including the previously announced $50,000 Poker Players Championship. Near the end of the series, the second-largest tournament of the schedule is set to take place with a $100,000 NLHE tournament slated to run on July 11 for those no longer in the Main Event. The event with the biggest buy-in on the schedule is the $250,000 NLHE Super High Roller which will take place on June 27. The event was previously announced as one of the 17 brand-new events taking place this summer and has been noted as the biggest buy-in tournament ever to be held in Sin City. Other items of note for the High Roller Series include that, with the exception of the $25,000 Heads-Up tournament and the $50,000 PPC, all high rollers will be played eight-handed. Additionally, there are two Pot Limit Omaha high rollers on the schedule, one at the $25K price point and another at $50K. Without accounting for re-entries, to play all nine high roller events a player will need to put up $625,000. Including the announcement of the High Roller Series, there are over 60 scheduled events for the 2020 summer series. The rest of the schedule, which is anticipated to be upwards of 90 events, is expected to be revealed before the end of February. For everything you need to know about the 2020 World Series of Poker, check out our Ultimate Guide to the 2020 WSOP. 2020 WSOP High Roller Series DATE EVENT BUY-IN TIME (PT) 05-29 High Roller No-Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $25,000 3:00 PM 05-31 Heads Up No-Limit Hold'em $25,000 6:00 PM 06-05 High Roller No-Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $50,000 1:00 PM 06-17 High Roller Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed $25,000 3:00 PM 06-22 Poker Players Championship 6-Handed $50,000 3:00 PM 06-27 Super High Roller No-Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $250,000 12:00 PM 07-07 High Roller Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed $50,000 3:00 PM 07-09 High Roller No-Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $50,000 6:00 PM 07-11 High Roller No-Limit Hold'em 8-Handed $100,000 3:00 PM
  3. Starting on February 6, 888poker’s value-packed online poker series XL Blizzard returns for 2020. XL Blizzard features a 34-event schedule spread over 11 days and promises over $1.4 million in total guarantees. [ptable zone=“Global Poker Article Ad”][ptable zone=“888poker”][ptable zone=“888poker NJ”] It’s the perfect opportunity for grinders at every level to battle for an XL title and potentially earn a dramatic boost to their bankroll. The schedule offers buy-ins that range from just $5.50 all the way up to $320 for the High Roller. With so many events on the schedule, you simply can’t go wrong by taking a shot in any of the 2020 XL Blizzard tournaments. However, on every schedule, there are some tournaments that a dedicated grinder needs to carve out time for. Here are five MUST-PLAY events from the upcoming 2020 XL Blizzard schedule. Event #1 - $50,000 Opening Event Buy-in: $109 Date: Thursday, February 6 There’s always a little bit of extra excitement at the onset of a new online poker tournament series. Historically, 888poker’s XL Blizzard Opening Event has been a showcase of enthusiasm. During past Opening Events, players have helped the tournament crush it’s $50K guarantee and created one of the largest prize pools of an XL series. With 30K in starting chips and 15-minute levels, players who want plenty of room to play will enjoy the structure. Plus, there are a number of direct $109 satellites that can be entered starting at just $5. This means that the field will be full of players who won their way into the contest on the cheap. Event #11 - $50,000 Mini Tune Up Buy-in: $16.50 Date: Sunday, February 9 Every online grinder knows that the biggest tournaments are held on Sunday and 888poker has packed the XL Blizzard Sunday schedule with some high-value events. While many will have their eye on the $160 buy-in $100K GTD Tune Up, don’t skip out on the $16.50 Mini Turn Up. The value is evident - it’s half the guarantee at one-tenth the buy-in of the largest version. That means there will be plenty of money to play for in the Mini Tune Up at a fraction of cost. In fact, on the same day, the Late Tune Up comes with a $55 buy-in and only a $20K guarantee, showcasing why you shouldn’t miss out on the Mini Tune Up. Event #23 - $50,000 PKO 8-Max Buy-in: $160 Date: Thursday, February 13 It feels good to knock an opponent out of a tournament. It feels great to get paid on the spot for doing so. 888poker knows how popular Progressive Knockout tournaments have become and the 2020 XL Blizzard schedule is jam-packed full of PKOs. None are bigger than the $50K PKO 8-Max. It comes with one of the higher price tags of the entire series but that only means that every bounty is more valuable. As the tournament progresses, the stakes will get even higher and whoever comes out on top of Event #23 will take home of one of the largest paydays of the week. Event #29 - $30,000 6-Max Buy-in: $109 Date: Saturday, February 15 If you like to play a lot of hands in tournaments then short-handed is for you. There are a number of 8-Max tournaments on the schedule but there is only one day where 6-Max is featured. The $109 buy-in, $30,000 guaranteed event is the biggest and richest of the three. The tournament structure is player-friendly with 50,000 in starting chips, 12-minute levels and a maximum of three re-entries. Like all of the $109 buy-in tournaments, direct satellites into this tournament start at just $5. Event #32 - $500,000 XL Blizzard Main Event Buy-in: $250 Date: Sunday, February 16 It should be no surprise that the XL Blizzard Main Event is an absolute must-play tournament. As we’ve said before, the XL series Main Events are some of the biggest tournaments that 888poker will run all year and it’s a shot-takers best chance at a bankroll-transforming score. Players can find their way into the Main Event in a number of ways. 888poker is routinely running $33 satellites that guarantee three seats into the Main Event. There is also a ‘new depositor’ qualifier that runs daily that also is awarding seats to the top 15 players. Running around the clock are step satellites where players can work their way up into larger satellites and events, all starting at literally $0.01. There’s no doubt that the XL Blizzard Main Event will be massive with the winner likely to walk away with close to a six-figure score.
  4. It’s time for another 888poker signature XL online poker series. Starting on February 6, XL Blizzard is back with 34-events over 11 days and more than $1.4 million in total guarantees. No doubt, battling for an XL title and a share of $1.4 million sounds great. But even after you carve out the time on your schedule to the online grind, you have to come up with the buy-ins. If a grinder was to play the entire XL Blizzard series that would mean dedicating more than $2,200 of their bankroll to the pursuit of greatness. [ptable zone=“888poker”][ptable zone=“888poker NJ”][ptable zone=“Global Poker Article Ad”] Luckily for all players, 888poker understands the benefit of giving everyone - from micro-stakes players to everyday grinders - the opportunity to win their way into some of XL Blizzard's biggest events. By using 888poker's satellite system and limited-time promotions, a player could dramatically reduce their buy-ins over the course of the series. Step Up To XL Blizzard One of the most tried and true ways to win your way into an XL Blizzard event is through 888poker’s round-the-clock Step Satellites. Starting for a little as $0.01 (yes, one cent!) players can work their way up a satellite tree that earns them tournament tickets into a number of larger events. Plus, depending on a player’s bankroll and comfort, they can start anywhere they wish on the satellite tree in an effort to turn a few pennies into a shot at a huge score. Here are the details of the Step Satellite Options: Step 1 – $0.01buy-in to win a Step 2 entry or tournament ticket Step 2 – $0.10 buy-in (or ticket) to win a Step 3 entry or tournament ticket Step 3 – $1 buy-in (or ticket) to win a Step 4 entry or tournament ticket Step 4 – $5 buy-in (or ticket) to win a Step 5 entry or tournament ticket Step 5 – $30 buy-in (or ticket) to win a Step 6 entry or tournament ticket Step 6 – $160 buy-in to win (or ticket) to win a $1,050 tournament ticket Massive Main Event The $500,000 XL Blizzard Main Event is a must-play event as it promises the winner a major boost to their bankroll. Even though last year 888poker reduced the buy-in to the Main Event from $1,050 down to $250, for some it may still be a stretch to take a shot in the Main Event without winning their way in. Direct satellites are routinely running for the Main Event. The buy-in is $33 and they promise that at least three tournament tickets will be given away. The $33 satellites have their own super-satellites, allowing players to win their way into the $33 for just $3.30. As the Main Event gets closer, look for more direct satellites to be put into the tournament lobby as 888poker will need 2,000 entries just to cover their guarantee. Depositor Freeroll In addition to the Steps Satellites for tournament tickets and direct satellites to specific events like the Main Event, 888poker is rewarding new depositors with a pair of Qualifiers. New depositors can pick up an entry into either the XL Blizzard Main Event Qualifier or the XL Blizzard Mini Tune Up Qualifier. The XL Blizzard Main Event Qualifier runs every day at 20:00 GMT through February 15 and the top 15 players are slated to win a $250 ticket into the XL Blizzard Main Event. It’s similar for the XL Blizzard Mini Tuen Up Event. Every day at 18:05 GMT through February 8 the tournament will run with the top 30 players picking up a $16.50 ticket to the Mini Tune Up. For more information on satellites and to take a shot at a particular event, launch the 888poker client and click on the Tournaments Tab. From there, select the Satellites tab to launch into Step Satellites. Or, select the XL Blizzard tab to see all of the upcoming events and direct satellites for the Main Event.
  5. Nominations for the second annual Global Poker Awards were announced on Friday with popular poker personality Joey Ingram leading the way with four nominations. The Global Poker Awards, slated to take place at the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas on March 6, celebrates the poker industry by recognizing the game of poker's top talent both on the felt and behind the scenes. This year, awards will be handed out in 19 different categories including two that are voted on by the fans. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="BetMGM NJ"] Multiple Nods Sixteen former award winners are back in contention this year with a number of them recognized in multiple categories. Poker personality and podcast/video producer Joey Ingram picked up nominations in the People’s Choice for Poker Personality of the Year, Podcast of the Year (Poker Life Podcast), Journalist of the Year and Media Content of the Year for his extensive work investigating the Mike Postle cheating allegation story. PocketFives’ own three-time GPI award winner Lance Bradley earned another three nominations for Journalist of the Year, Media Content of the Year, and Podcast of the Year for The FIVES Poker Podcast, alongside PocketFives own Managing Editor Donnie Peters. Daniel Negreanu, Jamie Kerstetter, Lex Veldhuis, Hayley Hochstätter and tournament director Matt Savage each earned two nominations. Alex Foxen, Andrew Neeme, Barny Boatman, Brad Owen, Bryn Kenney, Cary Katz, Joe Giron, Joe Stapleton, Kevin Mathers, Nick Schulman, and Paul Campbell join Bradley, Ingram, Negreanu, Savage, and Veldhuis as previous award winners who find themselves back in the running for even more hardware at the upcoming ceremonies. In addition to the 18 awards that will be voted on and the Global Poker Index Player of the Year awards, the PocketFives Legacy Award will once again be handed out to a PocketFives player who has shown success in both the online and live poker arenas. Previous award winners include Ari Engel, Cliff Josephy and Chris Moorman. 2019 Global Poker Award Nominees GPI BREAKOUT PLAYER OF THE YEAR Robert Campbell (AUS) Ramon Colillas (ESP) Ben Farrell (UK) George Wolff (USA) FINAL TABLE PERFORMANCE OF THE YEAR Hossein Ensan (GER), WSOP Main Event William Alex Foxen (USA), WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic Phillip Hui (USA), WSOP Poker Players Championship Bryn Kenney (USA), Triton Poker Super High Roller Series Montenegro TWITTER PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR Barny Boatman (UK) Jamie Kerstetter (USA) Kitty Kuo (TAI) Kevin Mathers (USA) PLAYERS CHOICE FOR TOUGHEST OPPONENT Michael Addamo (AUS) Kahle Burns (AUS) Stephen Chidwick (UK) Ali Imsirovic (BIH) STREAMER OF THE YEAR Hristivoje Pavlovic (AUS) Benjamin Spragg (UK) Matthew Staples (CAN) Lex Veldhuis (NED) VLOGGER OF THE YEAR Jaman Burton (USA) Andrew Neeme (USA) Daniel Negreanu (CAN) Brad Owen (USA) PODCAST OF THE YEAR DAT Poker Podcast: Terrence Chan, Ross Henry, Adam Schwartz, Daniel Negreanu (CAN) Poker Life Podcast: Joey Ingram (USA) The Fives, a PocketFives Podcast: Lance Bradley (CAN), Donnie Peters (USA) The Grid: Jennifer Shahade (USA) INDUSTRY PERSON OF THE YEAR Phil Galfond (USA), Run it Once Poker Cary Katz (USA), Poker Central/PokerGO Paul Phua (MAS), Triton Poker Matt Savage (USA), WPT/TDA TOURNAMENT DIRECTOR OF THE YEAR Tony Burns (USA), Seminole Hard Rock Paul Campbell (USA), Aria Jack Effel (USA), World Series of Poker Matt Savage (USA), WPT/TDA EVENT OF THE YEAR PokerStars Players Championship Bahamas Triton London Million for Charity World Series of Poker Main Event World Series of Poker BIG 50 MID-MAJOR TOUR/CIRCUIT OF THE YEAR Road to PSPC RUNGOOD Poker Series WPTDeepStacks WSOP Circuit JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR Lance Bradley (CAN) Haley Hintze (USA) Joey Ingram (USA) Nick Jones (UK) BROADCASTER OF THE YEAR Jamie Kerstetter (USA) Jeff Platt (USA) Nick Schulman (USA) Joseph Stapleton (USA) MEDIA CONTENT OF THE YEAR: WRITTEN A Fight for Fatherhood: The Biggest Win of Jason Young’s Life, Lance Bradley (CAN) for PoketFives Kevin Roster Spread Sarcoma Awareness at WSOP, Wants to End Life on His Terms, Aleeyah Jadavji (CAN), Hayley Hochstetler (USA) for PokerNews Poker and Pop Culture, Martin Harris (USA) for D+B Publishing The Unabridged Story of The Hendon Mob, Paul Seaton (UK) for PokerNews MEDIA CONTENT OF THE YEAR: PHOTO Antonio Abrego (USA): Ryan Laplante in deep thought at the WSOP (PokerNews) Drew Amato (USA): Dario Sammartino folds at the WSOP (Poker Central) Joe Giron (USA): WPT Champion Frank Stepuchin is lifted in victory (WPT) Hayley Hochstetler (USA): Doyle Brunson and Jack Binion at WSOP celebration (WSOP) MEDIA CONTENT OF THE YEAR: VIDEO Investigating Mike Postle Hand Histories from Stones Live, Joey Ingram (USA) Legends of the Game – Stu Ungar (PokerGO) The Big Blind w/Jeff Platt featuring Mike Matusow, Normand Chad, Sarah Herring (PokerGO) Who Makes Money from Professional Poker, Sam Rega (USA) for CNBC PEOPLE’S CHOICE FOR POKER PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR Joey Ingram (USA) Jonathan Little (USA) Ryan DePaulo (USA) Lex Veldhuis (NED) PEOPLE’S CHOICE FOR HAND OF THE YEAR Bryce Yockey takes a historic hit against Josh Arieh in the WSOP Poker Players Championship Ryan Riess makes 10-high all-in call at EPT Monte Carlo final table Sam Trickett makes Stephen Chidwick fold best hand at Triton London 1M event Thi Xoa Nguyen folds full house to Athanasios Polychronopoulos at PSPC
  6. The schedule for the 2020 World Series of Poker continued to take shape on Thursday as officials revealed the dates for another 12 events, including a brand new ‘mystery’ bounty tournament and the largest buy-in tournament ever to take place at the WSOP. With the announcement of these 12 new events, a total of 17 brand new tournaments have been added thus far to the 2020 WSOP. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="BetMGM NJ"] Freezeout Series Following up their previous announcement that this year’s World Series of Poker will have a “concerted effort” to provide players more freezeout tournaments, the latest batch of dates includes another six No Limit Hold’em events priced between $500 and $5,000 that gives players just a single shot to make the money. When all is said and done, including staple events like the Main Event and the Monster Stack, the WSOP promises players more than 40 events on the schedule will utilize the freezeout format. The six tournaments announced today have been dubbed the Freezeout Series six-pack and hit a variety of price points. Freezeout Series Six-Pack Dates DATE EVENT START TIME (PT) BUY-IN 05-27 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $1,000 06-04 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $1,500 06-11 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $2,500 06-15 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $500 06-18 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 01:00 PM $3,000 06-21 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 03:00 PM $5,000 "Mystery Bounty" One of those new single-shot tournaments that is sure to draw some buzz is the first-ever $1,500 Mystery Bounty No Limit Hold’em. The tournament plays like a typical bounty tournament where players will capture a cash reward for every player they eliminate. However, there’s a twist. The will be 100 “mystery bounties” of varying values that total at least $1,000,000. A standard bounty is $100, but the 100 players who unknowingly hold a “mystery bounty” will be valued between $2,500 and $250,000. The mystery part is that players will have no idea if they are battling against a player worth $100 or $250,000 until they actually bust that player and cash out. Bounty Amount # of Prizes $250,000 1 $100,000 3 $25,000 6 $10,000 10 $2,500 80 This event is scheduled for Sunday, June 28, one day after the $888 Crazy Eight event and just one day before the $1,000 Mini Main Event. Historic Super High Roller Another new event added to the schedule is the $250,000 Super High Roller NLHE bracelet event. The tournament is not only new to the World Series of Poker but, according to the announcement, it’s new to the city of Las Vegas. It will mark the first time that a tournament with a price point this high has ever been run in Sin City. While the player pool for such a nosebleed event is limited, the interest that the $250,000 Super High Roller bracelet event will draw from the poker playing public will be quite high. In addition to the $250K, three more big buy-in tournaments were part of the announcement. On May 29, there will be a $25,000 NLHE High Roller Eight Max scheduled and on July 7 the $50,000 Pot Limit Omaha High Roller will take place. The 64-player Heads-Up tournament returns in 2020 as well, however, this year the buy-in has gone up from $10,000 to a $25,000 buy-in. Read: WSOP Adds $10,000 Online Event and 15 More Events To 2020 Schedule “New events are always a result of player input and we’re thankful to have received many great suggestions this year,” said Jack Eiffel, WSOP Vice President. “The 2020 WSOP is chock-full of new events, new price points and a little mystery sure to resonate with poker players everywhere. We can’t wait to open our doors in four short months to get things started.” For everything you need to know about the 2020 World Series of Poker, check out our Ultimate Guide to the 2020 WSOP. 2020 WSOP New Event Schedule DATE EVENT START TIME (PT) BUY-IN 05-27 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $1,000 05-29 High Roller NLHE Eight Max 03:00 PM $25,000 05-31 Heads-Up NLHE 06:00 PM $25,000 06-04 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $1,500 06-07 Forty Stack NLHE 11:00 AM $1,000 06-11 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $2,500 06-15 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 11:00 AM $500 06-18 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 01:00 PM $3,000 06-19 Nine-Game Mix Six Max 03:00 PM $2,500 06-21 Freezeout No Limit Hold'em 03:00 PM $5,000 06-27 Super High Roller NLHE 12:00 PM $250,000 06-28 Mystery Bounty' NLHE 11:00 AM $1,500 07-06 Mixed NLHE/PLO Eight Max 06:00 PM $5,000 07-07 High Roller Pot Limit Omaha 03:00 PM $50,000 07-09 Fifty Stack NLHE 12:00 PM $1,500 07-12 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack 11:00 AM $800 07-13 Super Turbo NLHE 11:00 AM $1,000 * 5 of the 17 events above have been previously announced.
  7. February marks the return of one of 888poker’s signature online poker series as XL Blizzard offers players 11 days of non-stop tournament action. This year, XL Blizzard takes place from February 6-16 and provides tournament grinders 34 opportunities to take home a title with over $1.4 million in total guarantees up for grabs. For those who have played in one of 888poker’s XL series in the past year, the schedule will have a familiar look. It brings back the majority of the most popular offerings that value-seeking grinders have come to expect. The $50,000 Opening Event, $100,000 Tune Up and the $100,000 High Roller all return to the schedule. However, as much as players enjoy the complete schedule, the largest payday of the entire series will come at the conclusion of the $500,000 GTD Main Event. The Main Event The Main Event of an XL series is one of the highest value tournaments the online site runs all year. In 2019, they reduced the buy-in to $250 in an effort to make the tournament more accessible to the majority of their players. The reduced buy-in allows both shot-takers and grinders alike the opportunity to turn a modest sum into a big-time score that could catapult a bankroll to the next level. In 2019, it was Malta’s ‘.RUIT.HORA.’ that took down the Main Event. He turned his $250 investment into a massive $91,847 score. In heads-up play, ‘.RUIT.HORA.’ bested ‘DeuceofDuc0’ who walked away with $65,363 for their second-place finish. In fact, eight of the final nine players at the final table took home five-figure scores making the 2019 XL Blizzard final table one of 888poker’s richest of the year. For an online tournament, the XL Blizzard Main Event gives players all the play they could ask for. It starts with 50,000 in tournament chips and 20-minute levels. Rebuys are available should things take a turn for the worst in the early levels and even with hours of late registration, someone who needs to jump in at the last second will have plenty of room to maneuver. Pushing to get as many players into the Main Event as possible, 888poker is offering plenty of satellites to help players afford the buy-in for cheap. In addition to their always-available satellite system, where players can start at the bottom of the satellite tree for as little as $0.01, 888poker is running daily qualifiers for recent depositors. These qualifiers will give the top 15 players a seat into the $250 buy-in Main Event. For those looking to buy-in directly to a satellite, there are $33 buy-in events that guarantee that at least three seats to the Main Event will be awarded. Schedule Highlights With buy-ins ranging from as little as $5.50 all the way up to the $320, the schedule features a tournament to entice all poker players. If history proves us a glimpse into the future, the $109 buy-in $50,000 Opening Event on February 6 will far exceed its guarantee. Back in May, during the XL Inferno $50K Opening Event, 534 players pushed the prize pool to over $72,000. PKO tournaments always prove to be popular. 888poker has given bounty hunters nine tournaments to fire in with buy-in ranging from as little as $16.50 ($20,000 Mini PKO) up to the February 16 $160 buy-in PKO 8-Max with its $50,000 guarantee. Short-handed fans have a day’s worth of 6-Max and 8-Max tournaments to look forward to. Those who want to play for higher stakes can jump into the $100K GTD $320 High Roller. So clear those calendars and get ready to grind as XL Blizzard returns on February 6. 888Poker 2020 XL Blizzard Schedule DATE TIME GMT EVENT BUY-IN Feb-6 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #1 - $50,000 Opening Event $109 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #2 - $20,000 Mini Opening Event $16.50 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #3 - $20,000 Late Opening Event $55 Feb-7 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #4 - $30,000 PKO $55 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #5 - $20,000 Mini PKO $22 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #6 - $10,000 Late PKO $33 Feb-8 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #7 - $30,000 8-Max $109 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #8 - $10,000 Mini 8-Max $8.80 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #9 - $15,000 Late 8-Max $55 Feb-9 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #10 - $100,000 Tune Up $160 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #11 - $50,000 Mini Tune Up $16.50 6:30 PM XL Blizzard #12 - $10,000 Micro Tune Up $5.50 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #13 - $20,000 Late Tune Up $55 Feb-10 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #14 - $20,000 R&A Event $33 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #15 - $10,000 Mini R&A $5.50 7:00 PM XL Blizzard #16 - $15,000 Late R&A $16.50 Feb-11 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #17 - $100,000 High Roller $320 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #18 - $30,000 Mini High Roller $55 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #19 - $20,000 Late High Roller $109 Feb-12 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #20 - $50,000 PKO $109 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #21 - $20,000 Mini PKO $16.50 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #22 - $10,000 Late PKO $33 Feb-13 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #23 - $50,000 PKO 8-Max $160 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #24 - $20,000 Mini PKO 8-Max $22 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #25 - $20,000 Late PKO 8-Max $55 Feb-14 5:00 PM XL Blizzard #26 - $30,000 DeepStack $55 5:00 PM XL Blizzard #27 - $20,000 Mini DeepStack $16.50 7:00 PM XL Blizzard #28 - $15,000 Late DeepStack $33 Feb-15 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #29 - $30,000 6-Max $109 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #30 - $20,000 Mini 6-Max $16.50 8:00 PM XL Blizzard #31 - $15,000 Late 6-Max $55 Feb-16 5:00 PM XL Blizzard #32 - $500,000 Main Event $250 5:30 PM XL Blizzard #33 - $50,000 Mini Main Event $33 6:00 PM XL Blizzard #34 - $15,000 Micro Main Event $5.50
  8. The end of 2019 proved to be very profitable for PocketFivers over on 888poker as prominent players took advantage of 888’s generous guarantees on marquee tournaments to finish the year with big-time scores. Russia’s current #1-ranked player ‘papan9_p$’ pulled down $51,550 on 888poker in the month of December to take the top spot on the 888poker Top Earners list. [ptable zone=“Global Poker Article Ad”][ptable zone=“888poker NJ”][ptable zone=“888poker”] He only had three total cashes, all at the end of the month, but he made them count. The largest cash was his victory in the December 22 edition of the $1,050 buy-in $200,000 Dragon. He bested the field of 145 entries to take home the $43,000 first-place prize. Not only was this a nice cash windfall, but it was a bit of redemption for the Russian as less than one month earlier, ‘papan9_p$’ made it to heads-up in this event but didn't close it out and ended up finishing as the runner-up, booking a $32,000 score. Less than a week after his victory in the Dragon, he also made a final table finish in 888poker’s spotlight Sunday Major, the $100,000 Mega Deep. His fourth-place finish added $8,250 to his bankroll. Thanks in part to his stellar December on 888poker, ‘papan9_p$’ is currently sitting at a career-high ranking of #6 in the world. He heads into 2020 looking to build on his over $5.6 million in career earnings. Argentina’s Ivan ‘ivanvilchez8’ Vilchez takes the #2 spot on the Top Earners list after hauling in $31,240 for the month. Like ‘papan9_p$’, Vilchez made the bulk of his earnings with a deep run in the December 22 $200,000 Dragon tournament. He finished as the runner-up to ‘papan9_p$’ and captured $31,000 for his efforts, his largest ever score on 888poker. Vilchez, the #7-ranked player in all of Argentina, currently sits with over $2.2 million in career earnings. Rounding out the top three on the list is Russian crusher Arsenii ‘josef_shvejk’ Karmatckii. Karmatckii waited until the last minute to pick up a big score on 888poker when he took down the December 29 edition of the $100,000 Sunday Mega Deep for a $19,350 payday. He added another $562 score to finish off the month with $19,911 in earnings on the site. Currently, the #11-ranked player in the world, Karmatckii picked up his first Monthly PLB title in November 2019. 888poker Top Earners of December 2019 PLAYER EARNINGS CASHES WINS papan9_p$ $51,550 3 1 ivanvilchez8 $31,240 2 0 josef_shvejk $19,911 2 1 edugurps $15,150 2 0 Belabacsi $14,746 18 1 MatveichukR $13,256 14 1 ddaubar $12,181 18 2 plush0 $11,982 11 2 YugiohPro $11,783 17 2 LIk3az0mbY $11,670 35 0 It was a busy month for ‘Durval Santos Silva Neto’ who put in maximum volume to lead all PocketFivers with 121 in-the-money finishes on 888poker. Of those 121 cashes, the Brazilian picked up four victories for $4,223 in total earnings. Bruno ‘AnimaleGO’ Caiado was right behind ‘Durval Santos Silva Neto’ with an impressive 91 total cashes. He added a total of $2,400 to his bankroll and now sits less than $5,000 away from hitting the major milestone of $100,000 in total career cashes. Making it a clean sweep of Brazilians in the top three is the familiar name of Flavio ‘Flavio Felipe’ Costa who often makes appearances on the 888poker Most Cashes list. This month, Costa notched 77 cashes and took home $7,884, more than anyone else in the top 10 on this list. 888poker Top 10 Cashers of December 2019 PLAYER EARNINGS CASHES WINS Durval Santos Silva Neto $4,223 121 4 AnimaleGO $2,400 91 3 Flavio Felipe $7,884 77 5 llxandell $2,875 76 5 DoperHarley $1,262 74 3 sizzlinbetta $2,798 72 3 BLaaZeKuSH $3,880 70 3 Deeagie $1,489 52 2 strlxen $3,590 51 1 smooke28 $1,860 50 1 Costa also made an impression when it comes to first-place finishes in December, topping the list with five victories. He was tied in terms of victories by Alexandre ‘Ilxandell’ Souza who also had five, but Souza’s $2,875 in earnings was second to Costa’s over $7,800. ‘Durval Santos Silva Neto’s four victories were good for third on the list and the rest of the top ten were all tied with three victories. 888poker Top 10 First-Place Finishers December 2019 PLAYER EARNINGS CASHES WINS Flavio Felipe 7884.59 77 5 llxandell 2875.38 76 5 Durval Santos Silva Neto 4223.83 121 4 Gabriel Sebben 1371.51 25 3 AnimaleGO 2400.16 91 3 FENOMENICO 852.13 14 3 kuzmich 525 4325.77 7 3 sizzlinbetta 2798.33 72 3 RecedevusT 6856.68 17 3 sansaorafael 7314.85 13 3
  9. 888poker LIVE is getting ready to go on the road and to kick off their 2020 live tour with their first-ever stop in Madrid, Spain. The 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival will take place from January 23 - February 3 at Casino Gran Via and includes 12 tournaments, a host of live satellites, and €1,000,000 in total guaranteed prize pools. First-Ever Madrid Main Event While there are many events to get excited about during 888poker’s festival in Madrid, undoubtedly players will be gearing up to make a deep run in the €888 buy-in Main Event. Not only does the Main Event provide players a chance to become an 888poker champion, but with its €800,000 guarantee, the first-place payday will be one of the largest 888poker LIVE prizes of the entire year. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="888poker"][ptable zone="PokerStars NJ"] In order to make sure they hit that guarantee, 888poker is doing everything they can to help players participate. The Main Event itself has four starting flights, all of which have unlimited re-entry and plenty of time for late entry. Additionally, for players who are looking to get in for the minimum, 888poker will be running at least three live satellites that will guarantee no fewer than five seats to the Main Event. Ambassadors On Hand The 50-minute levels and 88K in starting chips are sure to entice recreational players but just in case that's not enough, 888poker is offering the opportunity to play with some of their popular ambassadors. For their first visit to Madrid, 888poker LIVE is bringing in the bulk of the 888poker ambassador roster including 2014 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Martin Jacobson, former #1-ranked PocketFiver Chris Moorman, WSOP on ESPN sideline reporter Kara Scott, Vivian Saliba, Sofia Lovgren, Dominik Nitsche, and their newest ambassador, Russia’s Daria Feschenko. The squad of ambassadors will, of course, be battling for the first-place prize while at the same time looking to meet and greet those who come out to take a shot in the Main Event. Win A Seat Online Participating in the live satellites is not the only way to win a seat into the Madrid Festival Main Event. Online satellites are currently running on 888poker. Players can take a shot at a $1,600 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival Package which includes the buy-in to the Main Event, three nights accommodation in Madrid from January 31 - February 3, and an additional $250 in travel expenses. The direct satellites have a $109 buy-in but super satellites that help players work their way up to the $109 buy-in level start for as little as $0.01 online. More Than The Main The Madrid Festival promises poker players even more action than just the Main Event. There are twelve total events over the course of 12 days. Everything kicks off with the €220 buy-in Opening Event with a €100,000 guarantee. The schedule also includes live versions of some popular 888poker online events including a €330 Whale, €55 Swordfish, and the €110 Hurricane. The €2,200 High Roller has a €50,000 guarantee and on the opposite end of the spectrum, the High Noon Turbo may appeal to beginners with its €50 buy-in. Also included are a Ladies Event and a Pot Limit Omaha tournament. 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival Schedule DATE EVENT BUY-IN 01-23 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1A €220 01-24 Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1B - 5 Seats GTD €50 01-24 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1B €220 01-24 The Thunder - €10,000 GTD €88 01-25 Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1C - 5 Seats GTD €50 01-25 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1C €220 01-25 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1D - turbo €220 01-26 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 2 & Final Table 01-26 The Breeze - €5,000 GTD €110 01-27 High Noon Turbo €50 01-27 The Hurricane - €5,000 GTD €110 01-28 The Swordfish - €5,000 GTD €55 01-29 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1A - 5 Seats GTD €110 01-29 High Roller Day 1 - €50,000 GTD €2,200 01-30 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1B - 5 Seats GTD €110 01-30 High Roller Final Day - 01-30 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1A - €800,000 GTD €888 01-31 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1B - €800,000 GTD €888 01-31 The Mega Knockout [€50 Bounty] - €10,000 GTD €115 02-01 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1C - 3 Seats GTD €110 02-01 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1C - €800,000 GTD €888 02-01 Pot Limit Omaha €150 02-02 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1D - TURBO - €800,000 GTD €888 02-02 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 2 - 02-02 The Whale - €10,000 GTD €330 02-02 Ladies Event €55 02-03 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Final Day -
  10. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. It's time once again for another all-new episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast! This week, Lance and Donnie discuss the fast start of the first-ever PokerStars Pennsylvania Championship of Online Poker and how early participation led to increased guarantees across the series. Also, the Global Poker Awards announced their return to the PokerGO Studio in Las Vegas this March. Let the speculation begin on who will take home a trophy next year. Plus, all of the need-to-know news from this week in poker - tune in! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  11. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Download the latest episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast! This week, Lance and Donnie dive deep into the announcement by Caesars Entertainment that the home of the World Series of Poker, the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, has officially been sold. What does this mean for the WSOP? The guys break it down. Plus, the 2019 PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker is in the books and there’s a new million-dollar Main Event champion. Also, the WPT Borgata Poker Open ended in a crazy three-way flip…or did it? Should dealmaking be public in the big-time tours? Check it out! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  12. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. The FIVES Poker Podcast is back with another brand new episode with Lance and Donnie bringing you the very latest news from the world of poker. This week, after two years of waiting, online poker makes its successful return to Pennsylvania. After a two day soft launch, PokerStars PA got the green light to go live 24/7 - so what does this mean for online poker in the U.S.? Plus, the 2019 World Series of Poker Europe comes to an end with Daniel Negreanu winning his third career Player of the Year title. Download and listen in today! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  13. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Lance and Donnie return with an all-new episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast to talk about one of the biggest poker stories of 2019. After months of grinding, Daniel Negreanu was declared the 2019 World Series of Poker Player of the Year! However, late last week a data entry error was discovered that overturned his would-be history-making achievement and awarded the Player of the Year award to Australia's Robert Campbell. Listen in as the guys break down everything from how the error was discovered to the fallout of the WSOP Player of the Year race. Plus get caught up with everything else going on in the world of poker including results from the 2019 Poker Masters as well as the first Sunday grind for online poker players in Pennsylvania. Tune in today! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  14. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Listen in to a brand new episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast as Lance and Donnie get you all caught up with all of the latest news from the world of poker. This week, Daniel Negreanu's whirlwind 2019 continues as he drops a surprise announcement that just six months after he parted ways with PokerStars, he's signed on to be an ambassador for online poker site GGPoker. In other partnership news, U.S. based WSOP.com was named an official partner of the National Football League and has begun a promotion that will send someone to the Super Bowl. Plus, the guys recap the massive Super High Roller Bowl Bahamas. So download and subscribe to The FIVES today! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  15. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Download and listen in to a brand new episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast! This week on the show Lance and Donnie shine a light on the amazing 25-year old poker phenom Adrian Mateos who took down the partypoker MILLIONS World Bahamas Main Event for his third career seven-figure score. Plus, there seems to be no slowing down the excitement surrounding the return of online poker in Pennsylvania and the Super High Roller Bowl announced a new stop in Australia. Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  16. Hosted by Lance Bradley and Donnie Peters, The Fives Poker Podcast runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Check out this week's all-new episode of The FIVES Poker Podcast as Lance and Donnie bring you all of the most important news and notes from the world of poker. This week, the World Series of Poker made its first announcement about the 2020 WSOP summer schedule including dates for the Main Event and the return of the last summer's breakout Big 50. Plus, the state of Michigan is on the verge of becoming the sixth U.S. state to legalize and regulate online poker. Download, tune in and subscribe! Subscribe: Apple Podcasts * Google Podcasts * Stitcher
  17. After a successful 2019 season, 888poker has announced the dates and locations for their 2020 888poker LIVE tour. This year, 888poker will be making at least seven stops around the world including a return to popular poker spots in London, Bucharest, Sochi, and Barcelona. The tour will also return to Tallinn, Estonia for the first time since 2016 and kick off the entire tour by holding their first-ever Main Event in Madrid, Spain. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="888poker"][ptable zone="PokerStars NJ"] In addition to providing players unique poker experiences on their own tour, 888poker announced their continued sponsorships of some of the most popular poker series in the world. 888poker will be on hand as a partner with CNP Spain, The Battle of Malta in October and, of course, the 51st Annual World Series of Poker taking place this summer in Las Vegas. First Leg Of The Tour The action kicks off when 888poker travels to Madrid for the first time from January 23- February 3. 888poker is holding nothing back for their first stay at Spain's Casino Gran Via by bringing a €1M GTD series with an €800,000 GTD Main Event and the promise of getting the opportunity to play alongside a host of their ambassadors. Expected to be on hand are 2014 WSOP Champion Martin Jacobson, former #1-ranked PocketFiver Chris Moorman, Vivian Saliba, Sofia Lovgren, Ana Marquez, Daria Feschenko, and Dominik Nitsche. Literally two days after the Madrid stop is in the books, the team returns to the UK from February 5-9 for the first of their stops at the Aspers Casino in Stratford for the 888poker LIVE London Weekend. From there, the tour returns to Bucharest from March 23-29 for their popular stop in Romania’s capital. Last year, local grinder Darius Neagoe picked up the first recorded cash of his career by taking down the Main Event for over $69,000 and a trip to Las Vegas to play in the World Series of Poker Main Event. Barcelona then provides the backdrop for the tour’s fourth stop of the year as players enjoy the action on and off the felt from May 14-25 at 888poker LIVE Barcelona. The Main Event Then, in the middle of summer, 888poker plans to be on hand as a premier sponsor of the biggest event of the year, the 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event. As a key sponsor, 888poker is one of the only place players can win a seat to the Main Event online. Not only is 888poker providing direct satellites and all-encompassing packages to the Main Event, but they are helping players win a seat to their own branded $888 Crazy Eights event at the WSOP. A Strong Second Half After players recover from the summer grind in Las Vegas, the 888poker LIVE tour continues with a return to Casino Sochi in Sochi, Russia from August 6-14. Then, it’s a return to Tallinn from September 1-7. It will mark the first time 888poker has brought a Main Event to Estonia since 2016. Right after Tallinn, in October, 888poker will once again gather their ambassadors and fight in one of the biggest live tournaments of the year, The Battle of Malta. Finally, 888poker ends their year with the 888poker LIVE London Festival from November 16-29 on their home turf in London at the Aspers Casino in Stratford. All of that action coincides with 888poker’s partnership with CNP Spain and their five live tour stops taking place all across Spain from February to November. 888poker LIVE 2020 Schedule of Events DATES EVENT Jan. 23 - Feb. 3 888poker LIVE Madrid Feb. 5-9 888poker LIVE London Weekend March 23-29 888poker LIVE Bucharest May 14-25 888poker LIVE Barcelona July 1-14 World Series of Poker, Las Vegas August 6-14 888poker LIVE Sochi Sep. 1-7 888poker LIVE Tallinn October TBA Battle Of Malta Nov. 16-29 888poker LIVE London Festival Partnership With CNP Spain 2020 DATES EVENT Feb. 17-23 CNP Valencia April 20-26 CNP Malaga June 15-21 CNP Sevilla Sept. 7-13 CNP Alicante Nov. 13-23 CNP Madrid
  18. ‘Lena900’ has done it again. For the second time in two years, Sweden’s ‘Lena900’, the current worldwide #1-ranked online poker player, emerged as the winner of the PocketFives Yearly Leaderboard. After two years of finishing the Yearly PLB race as the runner-up, in 2018 ‘Lena900’ finally broke through and surpassed fellow countryman ‘C Darwin2’ to take down the title for himself. Now, with another impressive year of results, the Swede has topped the leaderboard in back-to-back years, solidifying his place as one of online poker’s all-time greats. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] ‘Lena900’s 2019 campaign looked a lot like his year in 2018 as the tireless grinder racked up millions in earnings, spent double-digit weeks (13) as the #1-ranked player in the world, and rocketed up the All-Time Online Money List. Not only did ‘Lena900’ win the Yearly PLB, but he also dominated it. He finished the year with 27,516 PLB points, over 6,000 more than second-place finisher ‘C Darwin2’. He picked up large chunks of PLB points playing in online poker’s biggest tournaments as well as excelling in lower buy-in, large field events. His largest PLB score came in late September when he outlasted the 631 entry field in the partypoker KO Series High Roller Main Event where he won $183,463 and 1,137.34 PLB points. The high roller tournaments were good to ‘Lena900’ as he picked up four six-figure scores in 2019, including a $240,807 payday for his runner-up finish in August’s partypoker POWERFEST Super High Roller, his single largest payday of 2019. It wasn’t just small field, large buy-in events where ‘Lena900’ racked up PLB points. In April, he battled through the 11,212 player field of the PokerStars $109 Sunday Million where he eventually finished as the runner-up for over $82,000 and 698.59 PLB points. This marked the second year in a row he finished in the top three of the Sunday Million, having taken home the bronze in 2018 for over $80,000. He also made a deep run in this event in 2014, finishing in fourth for $81,000. Perhaps 'Lena900's most notable achievement came right at the end of 2019. With the Yearly PLB locked up, on December 28 he re-inserted himself as the top-ranked player in the world at the same time as he surpassed ‘Belabacsi’ to take over the top spot on the All-Time Online Money List. 'Lena900' currently sits with over $17.87 million in lifetime earnings. Mirroring ‘Lena900’s back-to-back yearly feat, ‘C Darwin2’ (21,428 PLB points) also put together an impressive year in 2019 to finish as the Yearly PLB runner-up for the second year in a row. Like many of his fellow online pros, ‘C Darwin2’s biggest scores in 2019 came in from grinding high roller events. At the end of 2019, the Swede picked up the biggest score of his impressive career. He finished as the runner-up in PokerStars High Rollers Series Main Event for $338,494 and 1,058.69 PLB points. That was one of two six-figure scores ‘C Darwin2’ had in 2019 and was the difference-maker in where he finished in the Yearly PLB race. If it hadn’t been for that December result for ‘C Darwin2’, it’s likely that Johannes ‘Greenstone25’ Korsar would have finished in second place as opposed to third. Korsar’s year was highlighted by the fact that in November, for the first time in his career, he climbed into the worldwide #1 ranking. In addition to spending three weeks at the top of the rankings, Korsar also notched a career-high score in 2019 when he finished as the runner-up in the PokerStars Winter Series $2,100 Main Event back in January for over $260,000. Korsar picked up another six-figure score at the end of the year when he again took second in December’s PokerStars High Rollers $10,300 No Limit Hold’em for $203,485. partypoker ambassador Patrick ‘pleno1’ Leonard finished in fourth in the 2019 Yearly PLB race on the back of some big-time scores and a return for a brief stint to the #1-ranking. Leonard’s spotlight score of the year arrived in October when he took down the partypoker High Roller Gladiator for $78,761 and 552.68 PLB points. He finished the year with over $8.3 million in total lifetime earnings. Wrapping up the top five in 2019 was Sami ‘LarsLuzak’ Kelopuro. It was an impressive year for Finland's nosebleed grinder as, like ‘Greenstone25’, he took control of the #1 spot in the worldwide rankings for over two month for the first time in his career. Kelopuro’s year was highlighted by victories in partypoker’s Powerfest including taking down the $500K High Roller in April for over $109,000 an 385.36 PLB points. He grabbed another title in August by winning the $500K GTD Super High Roller for another $122,500 and 530.33 PLB points. PocketFives 2019 Yearly Leaderboard RANK PLAYER PLB POINTS 1 lena900 27,516 2 C Darwin2 21,428 3 Johannes 'Greenstone25' Korsar 21,152 4 Patrick 'pleno1' Leonard 20,407 5 Sami 'LarsLuzak' Luzak 20,026 6 papan9_p$ 19,096 7 Conor '1_conor_b_1' Beresford 18,682 8 inhoo 18,413 9 girafganger7 18,385 10 Joris 'Jorizz' Ruijs 18,268 11 Roman 'Romeopro' Romanovsky 18,249 12 emeriaa 17,958 13 Geraldo 'geraldocesar' Cesar 17,827 14 Chris 'Gettin Daize' Oliver 17,579 15 Kristen 'krissyb24' Bicknell 17,110 16 Alex 'SploogeLuge' Foxen 16,999 17 Belabacsi 16,576 18 whatisL0v3 16,404 19 DeathbyQuads 16,335 20 brunovolks 16,267
  19. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. October brought us one of the biggest stories of 2019 when allegations of cheating by Californian poker pro Mike Postle captured the attention of the entire poker world. Poker Pro Mike Postle Accused Of Cheating California poker pro Mike Postle found himself at the center of one of the biggest poker stories of the year after he was accused of cheating in the live-streamed cash games of Stones Poker Live. Accusations of cheating first came to light when Veronica Brill, a one-time player and commentator for Stones Poker Live, took to Twitter to voice her concerns. Soon after, clips of Postle playing in the game showed him routinely making correct river decisions in spots where it would be difficult to always be correct. Stones Live Poker social media quickly attempted to shut down the concern, dismissing Brill’s allegations as ‘fabricated’ and also claimed that an internal investigation proved no wrongdoing. That’s when popular podcaster Joey Ingram stepped in. He began pouring over hours and hours of Postle’s hands, providing hand-by-hand reviews of his play. The deeper Ingram looked, the more suspicious the play became and top-tier pros weighed in with their thoughts that there was indeed something to the allegations. Postle was not without his defenders and Stones Gambling Hall Tournament Director Justin Kuraitis insisted there that the game was on the up-and-up. But in the end, pressure from the community and the uncovered evidence forced Stones to re-open an investigation and cease all streaming activities. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] Postle Story Goes Mainstream The details behind the Mike Postle cheating allegations story became so incredible that mainstream media picked up the story, including some of the biggest media outlets in the world. Perhaps the biggest exposure the story received was from ESPN’s Scott Van Pelt who highlighted the story on his ‘1 Big Thing’ segment during an episode of SportsCenter that took place right after Monday Night Football. The three-minute national segment had Van Pelt breaking down the complicated story into an easy-to-understand narrative for his viewers. “If a guy were able to cheat his way to six-figure gains playing cards and it gets solved by a bunch of poker sleuths on the interest, is that a story that interests you? Because it did me,” Van Pelt teased before hitting on all the major points of the story. Van Pelt wasn’t the only news outlet to run with the Postle story as local news covered it extensively as did a feature article on The Ringer and CNBC. Postle Gets Hit With Multimillion-Dollar Lawsuit It didn’t take long before the Mike Postle cheating allegations turned into a full-blown court case. Poker playing lawyer Maurice VerStandig of The VerStandig Law Firm, representing 25 total plaintiffs, filed a lawsuit requesting more than $30 million in restitution from the victims of the Stones Live cash games. It seeks $10 million from Stones Gambling Hall for contrastive fraud for not monitoring the games to prevent cheating, another $10 million from Stones and Tournament Director Justin Kuritis for fraud for the potential cover-up and $10 million against Postle himself, as well as other as-yet-unnamed associates for fraud on the allegations of cheating. This matter has not yet been resolved. PokerStars Acquired By Flutter While everyone was waiting for news of PokerStars to launch in Pennsylvania, news of another sort dropped in October as it was announced that The Stars Group, parent company to PokerStars, had been acquired by Flutter Entertainment, the owner of gaming brands Paddy Power, BetFair and FanDuel. The merger created the world’s largest online gaming company with a total 2018 combined revenue of $4.66 billion. “This exciting combination will allow us to enhance and accelerate our existing strategy. In recent years, we have transformed TSG from aa single product operator in poker to a diverse global leader with multiple product offerings across poker, gaming, and sports betting," said The Stars Group CEO, Rafi Ashkenazi. PokerStars Prepares To Go Live In Pennsylvania At the very end of October the news came down that finally, after two years of waiting, online poker players in Pennsylvania were finally going to get to return to their online grind. The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board announced that PokerStars would be the first online operator to launch in PA and that the required two-day soft launch would happen on November 4. “We are very excited to be bringing our most popular brands to Pennsylvania in the next week,” a PokerStars representative said just ahead of the launch. At the time, the two-day launch was subject to regulatory approval and potential delays should there have been issues. However, the soft launch period was a resounding success with players flooding the lobbies and proving that not only was the PokerStars client ready for Pennsylvania, but the players were ready for PokerStars. Johannes ‘Greenstone25’ Korsar Wins October PLB Sweden’s Johannes ‘Greenstone25’ Korsar has already had a prolific online poker career, currently sitting at #6 on the PocketFives All-Time Online Money List. However, at the end of 2019, he began to achieve things he’d never done in the over four years since joining PocketFives. The first of those achievements was taking down the October 2019 PLB title. He racked up 80 cashes and over $237,000 en route to earning the October honor. On top of that, Korsar used that momentum to become the #1-ranked player in the world for the first time in his career just weeks later.
  20. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. In September, the long-rumored sale of the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino was finally announced leaving players to wonder what's next for the WSOP. Caesars Sells The Rio, Retains WSOP The rumors that the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino would be sold came to fruition in September as Caesars Entertainment Corp CEO Tony Rodio announced that New York real estate company Imperial Companies purchased the home of the World Series of Poker for $516.3 million. For poker players, the immediate concern was what exactly would happen to the World Series of Poker summer series. “The World Series of Poker will be hosted at the Rio in 2020 and Caesars will retain the rights to the event. The site of future WSOP events will be announced at a later date.” “The retention of the World Series of Poker and retention of Caesars Rewards customers are all factors that make this a valuable transaction for Caesars,” Rodio said. Now that the Rio has officially been sold and the deal closed, speculation will begin as to where the WSOP will land when their deal with Imperial Companies is complete. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] Venetian’s ‘Total Prize Pool’ Scheme Earns Criticism The Venetian Poker Room in Las Vegas drew the ire of the poker community when they decided to try something new with their guaranteed in their upcoming Lucky Shot Poker Series and Drawing. Rather than offer a traditional guarantee, which can be exceeded if things go well for the poker room, allowing players to battle for larger prize pools - the Venetian rolled out a ‘Total Prize Pool’ scheme which locked in an amount no matter how many people showed up to buy-in. “Any funds collected above and beyond the total prize pool will be the sole property of The Venetian Poker Room,” the structure sheet read. This meant that while the Venetian was on the hook for the advertised prize pool, they were in the position to collect unlimited rake depending on how well the tournament did. In the end, the Venetian's Lucky Shot Poker Series and Drawing ended up with a $27K overlay. Ken Strauss Arrest Report Shows Troubling Tale After Ken Strauss’s wild display at the World Series of Poker, one that got him disqualified for exposing himself at the table, his legal troubles continued. In the end, he was arrested in September on terrorism charges. In the midst of his bizarre behavior at the Rio and a tabletop dance on a craps table at the Luxor, Strauss drew the attention of authorities based on some troubling tweets and that he told employees at the Venetian that he would ‘harm anyone who comes near him and would also harm himself.” Strauss was arrested, charged with a Class B felony and had bail set at $150,000. ‘BigBlindBets’ Wins WCOOP Main Event High stakes cash game player ‘BigBlindBets’ topped the field of 2,236 entries in the $5,200 PokerStars World Championship of Online Poker Main Event to take home $1.665 million in prize money. Danilo ‘dans170’ Demetrio finished as the runner-up, taking home $1.187 million for second place while well-known high stakes pro Talal ‘raidalot’ Shakerchi added $846,528 to his already substantial bankroll by finishing in third place. 'LarsLuzak' Crushes In September For PLB Win At one time Sami ‘LarsLuzak’ Kelopuro was more well known for his battles at the nosebleed cash game tables. In 2019, he emerged as one of the best tournament poker players of the year, rising to take the worldwide #1 rank. In September, Kelopuro added to his accolades by winning the PocketFives Monthly PLB and scoring an astounding $4.275 million in a single month thanks to the high stakes tournament scene happening on GGPoker.
  21. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. In May, the poker world was surprised when it was announced that Daniel Negreanu, the face of PokerStars, was no longer going to be an ambassador for the online site. Daniel Negreanu And PokerStars Part Ways One of the most stable relationships in the poker world ended in May as Daniel Negreanu and PokerStars announced that they would be going their separate ways. Right before the World Series of Poker and only days after his high-profile wedding to Amanda Leatherman, Negreanu took to Twitter and posted a short video that announced that he would no longer be patched up for the online poker giant. Negreanu began representing the PokerStars brand in 2007 and quickly became the face of the company, including taking on plenty of criticism during PokerStars' controversial termination of the SuperNova Elite program in late 2015. “Daniel has been one of the most influential faces of poker and indeed PokerStars for 12 years,” said Stars Group Public Relations associate director Rebecca McAdam. “It has been wonderful to have his passion, support, and insights throughout our relationship. We wish Daniel the very best for the future, as well as wedded bliss and tons of run good this summer.” Six months after the end of his deal with PokerStars, Negreanu announced he would now be representing upcoming online poker site GGPoker in a deal that is believed to be worth even more than his contract with PokerStars. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] PocketFives Counts Down Top 50 Ahead of the 50th Annual World Series of Poker, the PocketFives editorial staff released their list of the 50 Greatest Players in World Series of Poker History. From old-school legends to internet grinders, the list is a snapshot of not just the history of the WSOP, but also of poker itself. Take a look back at our top 10 list of the players who made their name on the World Series of Poker stage. 10. Jason Mercier 9. Michael Mizrachi 8. Chris Ferguson 7. Erik Seidel 6. Daniel Negreanu 5. Johnny Chan 4. Phil Ivey 3. Stu Ungar 2. Doyle Brunson 1. Phil Hellmuth Phil Hellmuth Is Not Satisfied, Never Will Be With the 2019 World Series of Poker right around the corner, 15-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth spoke with PocketFives about what it means for him to hold all the records and what the 1989 Main Event winner was hoping would happen at the series, 30 years after his career-defining victory. “It’s in my nature, it’s in my DNA,” Hellmuth said of his drive to be the best. “I'm super competitive, and I’m competing against the best players in the world, in this era, and past and future eras, for greatest poker player of all time.” partypoker Invades Sin City Summer in Las Vegas belongs to the World Series of Poker. But in 2019, partypoker decided to get in on the action and announced that their partypoker MILLIONS series would be headed to the ARIA Hotel & Casino, marking the first time they’ve held a tournament in America. “We’re looking forward to MILLIONS making its debut this summer at the record,” said ARIA Director of Poker Operations Sean McCormack. “Our team is excited to add an event of this magnitude to our extensive summer schedule.” The partypoker MILLIONS had a $10,300 buy-in and a $5 million guarantee. The tournament ended up crushing the guarantee with Thomas Marchese taking home the $1,000,000 first-place prize of the over $5.36 million prize pool. Alex ‘SploogeLuge’ Foxen Wins May PLB Live or online, when it comes to poker Alex ‘SploogeLuge’ Foxen has proved he can do it all. In May, he took down the PocketFives Leaderboard for the first time. The former GPI #1-ranked player spent plenty of time in Canada this year, grinding some of the biggest online poker tournaments which helped him reach a career-high ranking of #4 in the world and soar past $5 million in lifetime online earnings.
  22. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. The month of March was headlined by the attempted home invasion robbery of WPT champion Darren Elias and the emotional career-defining victory of David 'ODB' Baker. Darren Elias Targeted In Home Robbery In one of the scariest stories of 2018, four-time World Poker Tour champion Darren Elias was the target of a home invasion robbery by Shannon Soroka, a 24-year old part-time poker player. Elias and his wife were not at home at the time. A babysitter was watching over Elias' two-year-old daughter when Soroka, armed with a handgun, burst into the house and demanded to know where Elias kept his cash. Elias had recently returned home from a third-place finish at the World Poker Tour Los Angeles Poker Classic where he earned more than $473,000. Soroka locked the babysitter in one of the home’s bathrooms and fled, eventually being caught by the Medford Township Police Department. Soroka was charged with robbery, aggravated assault, unlawful possession of a weapon, mischief and making terrorist threats. No one, including Elias’ daughter or the babysitter, was harmed during the incident. “It’s incredibly scary for me and my family,” Elias said. “It was an awful feeling.” [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] David Baker Wins LAPC In March, long-time professional poker player David ‘ODB’ Baker secured a career-defining win at the 2019 World Poker Tour L.A. Poker Classic, taking home a career-high score of over $1 million. In the aftermath of his victory, an emotional Baker spoke about what the win meant to him. More than simply how much the money would help his family, Baker reflected on how it felt as validation of a hard-fought career on the grind. “It kinda sounds corny, but it means so much to me,” Baker said. “I’ve battled my whole life in this business. I care about this business. I care about the prestige of these things and I know sometimes some of the guys are a little too cool for school to say that, but I do.” Baker continued to run good in 2019 as he racked up 17 World Series of Poker cashes, including winning his second career gold bracelet in the $1,500 Limit Hold’em. West Virginia Legalizes Online Poker West Virginia officially became the fifth U.S. state to legalize online gambling, including online poker. After the West Virginia Lottery Interactive Wagering Act soared through both the House and Senate, all eyes were on the office of Governor Jim Justice. After all, it was just months ago that Michigan was in a similar situation. In Michigan, a bill had cleared and was simply awaiting a signature but outgoing Michigan Governor Rick Snyder shockingly vetoed the bill on his way out the door. For West Virginia, once the Interactive Wagering Act passed, the Governor had 15-days to act on the bill. That time came and went without any movement from Justice which made it official - online poker would be legal by late June. At the time of this writing, no online poker operators have gone live in West Virginia. partypoker Launches Team Online Less than a month after stepping away from his position as an ambassador for PokerStars, Jeff Gross announced he was joining the rapidly growing team of online ambassadors for partypoker. At the time, the Poker Flow Show host was the highest-profile poker player to be picked up by partypoker. Eventually, the team was filled out with over 13 players including Jaime and Matt Staples, Hristivoje ‘AlLLinPav’ Pavlovic, and Kevin Martin, who has since left the squad. Geraldo ‘grealdocesar’ Cesar Wins Monthly PLB Brazilian online pro Geraldo‘ grealdocesar’ Cesar picked up his first PocketFives Leaderboard victory in March holding off top-tier pros like ‘C Darwin2’ and Conor ‘1_conor_b_1’ Beresford. Cesar picked up seven five-figure scores in the month including a spotlight victory in the March 11 edition of the partypoker Sunday High Roller Bounty Hunter for over $47,000.
  23. History was made in the PokerStars EPT Prague €5,300 Main Event as Mikalai Pobal emerged as just the second player in European Poker Tour history to become a two-time Main Event champion. It was a long road to victory for Pobal who first battled through the field of 1,154 entries and then grinded his way up from the short stack at the final table to put himself in position to become the first man to ever win two EPT Main Events. Eventually, Pobal faced off against two-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Norbert Szecsi in a fast-paced heads-up match to claim the historic title and €1,005,600 first-place prize. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] At the start of the final day, only five players remained. Even though Portal was sitting in the bottom half of the chip counts, everyone had over thirty big blinds so there was still room for everyone to maneuver. Nearly three hours into the day, the first of the five hit the rail. After Gaby Livshitz put in a raise with [poker card="jh"][poker card="6h"], Portugal’s Tomas Paiva made the call from the big blind holding [poker card="qc"][poker card="8c"]. The flop came [poker card="8s"][poker card="5h"][poker card="4h"], giving Paiva top pair and Livshitz an open-ended straight draw with a flush draw. Paiva, check-raised Livshitz who then shoved over the raise. Paiva made the call with his tournament on the line. The turn was the [poker card="8h"] bringing in the flush for Livshitz, but giving Paiva some life with one card to come. However, the river fell the [poker card="6c"] providing no help to the Paiva’s trips and sending him out the door in fifth place for €241,230. With four left, Pobal was now the shortest stack at the table. He picked his spots and found a double up and then quickly doubled again providing him some breathing room. Over the next two hours, Pobal began to climb the chip counts when eventually he knocked out his first opponent of the day. Livshitz limped the small blind holding [poker card="ad"][poker card="qs"] and Pobal made a small raise with his [poker card="as"][poker card="ac"]. Livshitz three-bet and after taking a moment to think about it, Pobal elected to flat call the raise. The flop came [poker card="qd"][poker card="js"][poker card="3d"]. Livshitz bet his top pair, Pobal took his time and put in a raise. Livshitz shoved and was snap-called by Pobal who watched as his pocket aces held through the [poker card="5d"] turn and the [poker card="7h"] river. Livshitz finished in fourth place earning €316,780. Pobal and Szecsi took turns holding the chip lead while Brazil’s Ricardo Da Rocha tried to climb back from the short stack. Eventually, with fewer than ten big blinds De Rocha moved all-in holding [poker card="as"][poker card="jh"] and was called by Szecsi holding [poker card="ah"][poker card="qc"]. The board [poker card="kd"][poker card="5h"][poker card="4s"][poker card="6c"][poker card="8s"] provided no help to the Brazilian and Da Rocha walked away in third place, taking home €421,450. With Pobal holding a slight chip lead heading into heads-up play, the pair briefly discussed the possibility of a deal. Unable to come to an agreement, Pobal and Szesi settled in to determine a winner with history on the line. It didn’t take long as Pobal ran hot right from the start and quickly held a sizable chip lead over Szecsi. On the final hand of the tournament, Szecsi raised the button with [poker card="8s"][poker card="8c"] and Pobal put in a three-bet with [poker card="ks"][poker card="kc"]. Szecsi stuck all his chips in the middle and was immediately called by Pobal. The [poker card="4c"][poker card="6c"][poker card="3d"] flop brought Szecsi some backdoor possibilities but the [poker card="2h"] turn was of no help. Finally, the [poker card="ah"] hit the river and Hungary’s Norbert Szecsi settled for a €598,880 payday as the runner-up. Pobal earned the 2019 EPT Prague Main Event title and €1,005,600 first-place prize. He became just the second player, the first male player, to win two EPT Main Event titles. The only other player in the tour's 15-year history to accomplish the same feat is Victoria Coren Mitchell who won EPT San Remo in 2014 for the second of her two victories. For Pobal, EPT Prague’s seven-figure score comes only second to his €1,007,550 prize for winning his first EPT which came back in August 2012 when he took down the EPT Barcelona Main Event in Season 9. 2019 EPT Prague Main Event Final Table Results 1. Milalai Pobal - €1,005,600 2. Norbert Szecsi - €598,880 3. Ricardo Da Rocha - €421,450 4. Gaby Livshitz - €316,780 5. Tomas Paiva - €241,230 6. Luke Marsh - €177,420 7. Laurent Michot - €134,610 8. Dietrich Fast - €96,100 9. Gab Yong Kim - €74,770
  24. Russian online poker crusher and the current #8-ranked player in the world Arsenii 'josef_shvejk' Karmatckii edged out Swedish superstars ‘DeathbyQuads’ and 'C Darwin2' for the top spot on the PocketFives Monthly LeaderBoard for the month of November. For the better part of two years, Russia’s current #1 player ‘josef_shvejk’ has been grinding his way to the upper echelons of the worldwide rankings and in November, he put those skills to use in order to take down his first PLB title. ‘josef_shvejk’ accumulated five total PLB-qualifying cashes, the largest of which arrived at the end of the month when he took down the November 26 edition of the PokerStars High Roller Club $530 Bounty Builder for $14,298 and 275.68 PLB points. He also picked up another big-time PLB score by finishing as the runner up in the PokerStars $215 Sunday Warm-Up for another $17,653 and 247.03 PLB points. In total, ‘josef_shvejk’ cashed for 93 times in the month, 12 of which were good for a top-3 finish. He also racked up just over $127,000 in earnings which helped push him up over $4.4 million in total lifetime earnings. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] It was an incredibly close PLB race in November with Sweden’s ‘DeathbyQuads’ (1,909) falling just 41 PLB points of claiming the title for himself. This year has been a good one for the Swede who recently hit a career-high worldwide ranking of #5 in the world and currently sits at #12. By all accounts, ‘DeathbyQuads’ had a very nice month. He earned over $103,000 thanks to some big-time scores in the PokerStars High Roller Club series. His largest score of the month came on November 3 with a victory in the PokerStars High Roller Sunday Warm-Up for $37,494/434.74 PLB points. In fact, the Swede was on a heater for the entire week. On the same day, he took fourth in the PokerStars High Roller Club $1,050 Sunday Supersonic for another $14,980/178.21 PLB points. He then won back-to-back tournaments on November 7, winning the PokerStars $109 Bounty Builder for $8,957/234.95 PLB points and the Hot $109 for another $5,729/174.64 PLB points. His results helped put him at just over $6 million in total career online earnings. The former #1-ranked PocketFiver ‘C Darwin2’ (1,906) finished in third in November, just 3 PLB points behind his fellow Swedish countryman. ‘C Darwin2’ is no stranger to the PocketFives PLB race. He has taken down the Monthly PocketFivles LeaderBoard eight times in his career. Even though he didn't make November his ninth, he still had a fantastic month on the virtual felt. Of his 28 cashes in the month, nine of them were for five-figures. This included a monthly high score in the November 5 edition of the PokerStars High Roller Club $1,050 Daily Warm-Up where he earned the $21,029 first-place prize. In total, ‘C Darwin2’ racked up over $181,000 in cashes and 10 podium finishes. Currently, the online legend sits in fifth place on the All-Tme Online Money List with over $14.3 million in career earnings. Fourth-place PLB finisher ‘lil lolita’s whole month comes down to one huge score. The mid-stakes grinder from Belarus picked up 1,017.25 PLB points after his November 17 victory in the PokerStars $109 Sunday Million for a career-high cash of $108,071. He defeated a field of 10,348 entries to take home the title. The victory not only made him the current #1 player in his home country of Belarus, but also took him to a career-high worldwide ranking of #138. Finishing off the top five is Tyler ‘Wonderboy222’ Goatcher from the UK. Goatcher put in some serious volume and amassed 96 cashes in November including a highlight tournament victory in the November 3 edition of the partypoker Gladiator where he won $16,364 and 273.86 PLB points. PocketFives November Monthly PLB RANK PLAYER POINTS 1 josef_shvejk 1958 2 DeathbyQuads 1909 3 C Darwin2 1906 4 lil lolita 1861 5 Wonderboy222 1786 6 Kalina7 1734 7 galochina10 1696 8 mjw006 1692 9 whatisL0v3 1653 10 Vinicius Perri 1626
  25. The state of Michigan is on the doorstep of legalizing and regulating online poker as well as mobile sports betting, daily fantasy sports, and online casino games after an all-encompassing package of iGaming bills passed through the Senate’s Regulatory Reform Committee and is headed to the Senate floor. If approved by the Senate, as it is expected to be, the return of online poker to Michigan will head to the Governor’s desk to be signed into law. If this all sounds familiar it’s because this is not the first time Michigan has been on the cusp of iGaming legalization. Just last year, a comprehensive online gaming bill passed both the House and Senate and simply needed the signature of the outgoing Governor Rick Snyder. Snyder, in one of his last acts in office, unexpectedly vetoed the bill leaving the lawmakers who were leading online gaming charge, back at square one. Throughout 2019, a renewed effort to resurrect an online gaming bill has been underway and now with less than a week before the end of the legislative session, Representative Brandt Iden, who has been a sponsor for one of the major online gaming bills, and the state of Michigan is poised to finish this multi-year campaign to legalize online gaming. There’s an optimism that this time there will be no surprises. One of the biggest sticking points leading up to this point was the proposed tax rate on iGaming and sports betting. Iden was lobbying for a lower tax rate as not to overly burden suppliers and operators of the new, legalized industry. Governor Gretchen Whitmer was insisting on higher taxes, fearing that legalizing online gaming would replace the income from the current state Lottery, 70% of the profits of which are used to aid Michigan schools. Negotiations between the Governor and those looking to pass the bill appeared to have been hashed out. In the bills that passed through committee on Tuesday, sports betting receiving a slightly lower tax rate than initially proposed and iGaming taxes were increased. Should things go according to plan, the Senate will vote on the iGaming bills as soon as Tuesday afternoon, but before December 19. After that, it will await the signature of Governor Whitmer. Once signed, online poker could be a reality for the players in Michigan before the end of 2020.

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