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Found 14 results

  1. Off to a hot start in 2014 is PocketFives member LarsLuzak(pictured), who is known in the real world as Sami Kelopuro. This Finnish poker pro has a final table in the Full Tilt Poker FTOPS Main Eventand a win in the site's $250,000 Guaranteed already this year for a combined $134,000. Additionally, he has one of the largest cashes ever recorded by a PocketFiver. We'll have more on that to come. --- Follow professional sports tipsters, make your own betting tips, and compete for real cash prizes. Tipdayis the ultimate sports tipping resource. Check it out. --- "It's always great to final table the right tournament," Kelopuro said of the FTOPS Main Event. "I wasn't doing well in any of the earlier FTOPS tournaments and finishing fifth in a lot of them wouldn't have paid much at all. Of course, it would've been great to go all the way and win it, but that's a good enough payday. I'll take what I can get." PocketFiver firaldo took down the FTOPS Main Event for $236,000 after a three-way chop. "I thought it was a sick field when there were about 30 players left and to my immediate right were Phil Galfond (pictured) and Mike timex McDonald," Kelopuro said of the field down the stretch in the $635 Re-Entry tournament. "Then, Phil busted and I had position on Mike all the way. There definitely weren't any very fishy plays toward the end." He bought into the FTOPS Main Event exactly once and said he was "running pretty well from the start. In general, I try to take advantage of the possibility of re-entries, play looser, and take chances, at least until I have a stack." Kelopuro officially banked $735,000 in 2011 after winning the PokerStars SCOOP High-Stakes Main Event, one of the largest scores you'll find for any PocketFiver. That score makes up nearly half of his tracked in the money finishes in tournaments and helped push him as high as #53 in the PocketFives Rankings. "I think a deeper structure is better for me," Kelopuro said of his success in larger tournaments. "I feel like I have more of an edge when it's not just pre-flop poker and there is room to play some. I've probably also been running well in the right tournaments, as luck is such a big factor, even after all these years." He added, "There aren't too many big tournaments running and I mostly play these big series, as I'm not too interested in the normal weekly tournaments. Last year until September, I played tournaments most Sundays, but then I realized it wasn't worth it. They have bad hours and even though I was running all right, it didn't pay enough per hour for me to keep doing it. I've always been more of a cash game player and there wasn't any downside for me to play just cash games." You can find him in $10/$20 and $25/$50 cash games nowadays and he was formerly active in the nosebleed stakes. "I tried to figure out how much I was getting from weekly tournaments and then decided to quit them when it seemed it was never going to pay more than $100 or $200 per hour; it's easy to make more from cash games." He explained, "I don't even need to play $10/$20 or higher. In fact, I think a good $2/$4 PLO player beats every single tournament player's win rate by multi-tabling and choosing games in a smart way. On top of that, you can make your own schedule; those games run all day long." Kelopuro got into poker in 2005 through friends who held home games. "I was immediately hooked and started playing online shortly thereafter," he said. His family was always approving of the Fin's poker exploits and, despite a stint in the military in 2007, he remained on top of his game. "By the time that was over," he said, "I was already winning big. At that point, it would have been time to think about schools to apply to, but I already had a career going in poker, so I stayed on that path." The Finland poker community is 522 members strong here on PocketFives. Its top 20 ranked players have combined for $43.4 million in winnings, including $3.9 million in the last three months. Kelopuro is its tenth-ranked player. FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt Poker. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives and make a deposit to get one free month of PocketFives MTT Training. You'll also get $25 free in most locations. Click here for PocketFives' Full Tilt Poker link. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  2. Success in poker is partly about who you surround yourself with. For PocketFiver Jonas donut604Mackoff (pictured), a solid core of poker minds helped push him to the top of the pack in a Full Tilt Poker $340 No Limit Hold'em Re-Entry FTOPS eventearlier this month for a solid $117,000. That score came on the heels of a chop in the PokerStars Super Tuesday. --- Follow professional sports tipsters, make your own betting tips, and compete for real cash prizes. Tipdayis the ultimate sports tipping resource. Check it out. --- "I'm feeling great about it obviously," Mackoff said about his FTOPS jersey. "It was a really great-structured tournament and the field was tough when we got deep, which made it more satisfying than some other wins." There were over 2,200 entrants; the top 270 made the money. Heads-up in the FTOPS Re-Entry tournament, Mackoff forged a deal with fellow PocketFiver bullyon, who took $100,000 back home to Costa Rica. "bullyon was definitely giving me the most trouble of anyone at the final table," Mackoff said. "While trying to leverage my chip lead to put some pressure on people waiting for pay jumps, he was relentlessly making big 4bets against me and putting the pressure on. I thought he played really well throughout and I was happy to do an ICM chop with him when I had the chip lead heads-up, which I may not have done with some of the other players." As far as his plans for the money from his FTOPS and Super Tuesday titles, Mackoff said part of it would be used to offset expenses for a few upcoming trips, including Montrealfor SCOOP, Las Vegas for the World Series of Poker, and Rio de Janeiroto visit his brother-in-law and soak up the World Cup. Mackoff is one of several players we've interviewed who have said they're headed to Brazil for the World Cup, which starts in June. "I'm very pumped," he said of the football extravaganza. "I've been meaning to head to Rio at some point anyway to visit family I have there and the city is going to be absolutely insane while the event is going on. I'll be staying with my brother-in-law's family there and will be rooting for Brazil along with them." He now has back-to-back months with six-figure scores and will look to make it three in a row in May. His success comes on the heels of what he termed an "extended downswing" in 2013. "I had become complacent with the way I was playing and it took me a while to take a step back and decide that I needed to start putting in work away from the tables again," Mackoff said. His solution: "I spent a week watching training videos and getting my mind back on the right track. I'm lucky enough to have Chris moorman1 Moorman (pictured) as a friend and, seeing that I had been struggling, he offered to go over some hand histories with me. After just a few hours of tweaking spots with him, I started seeing immediate results." Moorman is pictured following his recent WPT LAPC win. In addition to Moorman, Mackoff is close with players like Craig mcc3991McCorkell, Chris kid_brammBrammer, Rhys floppinhelJones, Martin molliemalone Malone, and Noah Vaillancourt. As you might expect, Mackoff is focused on improving his game and has enlisted the help of Fedor CrownUpGuyHolz, whom we recently interviewed about his PokerStars Sunday 500 win. "I just finished my first coaching session with him and it went really well," Mackoff said. "I couldn't be more excited about the rest of 2014." FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt Poker. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives and make a deposit to get one free month of PocketFives MTT Training. You'll also get $25 free in most locations. Click here for PocketFives' Full Tilt Poker link. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  3. In recent days, Daniel Charlton (pictured), who is known on PocketFives as judgedredd13, was part of a three-way chop of Event #15 of the ongoing Full Tilt Online Poker Series, or FTOPS, a $129 No Limit Hold'em Re-Entry Knockout. Charlton earned $42,000 as part of the chop, which came just four months after he was part of the historic 900 millionth tournament dealt on PokerStars. Charlton happily agreed to discuss his latest article-worthy achievement. PocketFives: How are you feeling about the FTOPS chop? Daniel Charlton: Pretty good. I didn't have the best July, so it has more than made up for that and I'm pretty happy with the result, although I made a huge mistake when making the chop. I don't play much on Full Tilt and we agreed to look at the numbers. I had played for like 14 hours that day and agreed to an ICM chop. I thought all the money had been chopped, but it was only afterward that I realized we were still playing for another $7,000. The first hand after the deal had been agreed to, the two other players moved all-in with 2-2 and J-10 suited, so I assumed all the money had been chopped. I wanted to eat my Chinese takeaway, so I started shoving all-in the next hand and got third place not really caring. I found out later that there was money to play for still; apparently, the other players didn't know either. PocketFives: Do you have any plans for the money? Daniel Charlton: I'm going to Spain in a few weeks for a holiday. I'll save some and I want to take my girlfriend away somewhere nice too. I'll use some as bankroll as well. PocketFives: Do you approach a knockout tournament any differently than a regular tournament? Daniel Charlton: Yeah, of course. The knockouts don't play as much of a part in your strategy as they do in the super knockouts or progressive knockouts, but they definitely should affect your decisions. In this kind of format, they affect your decision-making much more in the early stages of a tournament. You can think of the knockout as having a chip value, so you can factor in the pot odds when you're doing your decision-making. In the later stages of the tournament, the bounties become pretty negligible, but they're always a bonus. PocketFives: When would you reenter a tournament like this? Daniel Charlton: I will usually reenter if I can still get an 80 big blind stack or greater. If I'm getting any less than that, I will probably just skip it and move onto the next one. I've not really studied much about them, so maybe I'm missing out on some good reentry strategy, but I think if you can still get a good playable stack when you reenter, then I'm all for it. PocketFives: How much has your poker career changed since we last talked to you during the PokerStars 900 millionth tournament promotion (final table payouts pictured)? Daniel Charlton: I bought myself a new desktop and am approaching the game a lot more seriously. I had one of my friends who is good with computers customize it for me, so it's great to play a ton of tables and different sites and never have any issues with lag and all that. I'm playing pretty much all the high-stakes MTTs online now and really enjoying where I'm at. PocketFives: Do you have any poker goals for the rest of the year? Daniel Charlton: I had a Triple Crown prop bet a couple of weeks ago where I bet $300 on myself to win it within a week against a few mates who bet 5:1 that I couldn't do it. I didn't leave my room for the first five days and managed to win zero of the three tournaments I needed. I tapped out on the fifth day and admitted defeat, paid my mates the money, and went to the pub for the last two days. So, I'd love to win a Triple Crown before the year is out. PocketFives: Is there anything else you'd like to add? Daniel Charlton: I'd like to thank everyone who has helped me along the way. A big shout out to my parents, who were not really happy when I told them I wanted to pursue this as a career initially, but have been very supportive over the last few years and appreciate that this is something most parents probably wouldn't want their son pursuing as a job. So, thanks to everyone. The FTOPS is currently running at Full Tilt Poker. Sign up for Full Tilt through the links on PocketFives to get $25 free plus one free month of PocketFives Training with no sign-up fee. Click here to get started. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  4. From August 3 to August 17, the 26th Full Tilt Online Poker Serieswill take place. The Main Eventis a $635 Re-Entry Tournament that will guarantee at least $1 million. The finale occurs on Sunday, August 17 at 13:30 ET. Also of note is a Two-Day Event that gets underway at 12:30 ET on Saturday, August 16 with Day 1. That tournament has a $2,100 buy-in and guarantees $500,000. There are two multi-day eventsas well, each of which has eight starting days. If you're a fan of satellites, know they began on July 3, so you can qualify on the cheap if your bankroll doesn't allow high-dollar buy-ins. If you don't have a Full Tilt Poker account, sign up through the links on PocketFives to get $25 free in most locations and one free month of PocketFives Training with no signup fee. Get started by clicking here. We won't make you wait any longer. Here's the schedule for FTOPS XXVI, which will kick off in one month and features 31 tournaments, about two-thirds of which will spread No Limit Hold'em: Event #1: Sunday, August 3 at 13:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Hold'em Re-Entry Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1A): Sunday, August 3 at 16:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1B): Monday, August 4 at 12:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #3: Monday, August 4 at 14:30 ET $200 + $15 HORSE $25,000 GTD Event #4: Monday, August 4 at 16:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Hold'em Rush $75,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1C): Tuesday, August 5 at 12:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #5: Tuesday, August 5 at 14:30 ET $200 + $15 Limit Hold'em $25,000 GTD Event #6: Tuesday, August 5 at 16:30 ET $310 + $10 NL Hold'em Super Turbo Knockout $100,000 GTD Event #7: Wednesday, August 6 at 12:30 ET $300 + $20 Razz $25,000 GTD Event #8: Wednesday, August 6 at 14:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Heads-Up $25,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1D): Wednesday, August 6 at 16:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #9: Thursday, August 7 at 12:30 ET $200 + $15 PL Omaha Hi-Lo Six-Max $40,000 GTD Event #10: Thursday, August 7 at 14:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Hold'em Six-Max $100,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1E): Thursday, August 7 at 16:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #11: Friday, August 8 at 12:30 ET $200 + $15 Mixed-Mixed Six-Max Re-Entry Tournament $25,000 GTD Event #12: Friday, August 8 at 14:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Cubed $75,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1F): Friday, August 8 at 16:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1G): Saturday, August 9 at 11:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #13: Saturday, August 9 at 12:30 ET $1,000 + $50 NL Hold'em $250,000 GTD Event #14: Saturday, August 9 at 14:30 ET $300 + $20 PL Omaha Hi Six-Max Triple Chance $75,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1G): Saturday, August 9 at 16:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1H): Sunday, August 10 at 07:30 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #15: Sunday, August 10 at 11:00 ET $120 + $9 NL Hold'em Knockout $300,000 GTD Event #2 (Day 1H): Sunday, August 10 at 12:00 ET $50 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $200,000 GTD Event #16: Sunday, August 10 at 13:30 ET $300 + $20 NL Hold'em Re-Entry Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1A): Sunday, August 10 at 16:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1B): Monday, August 11 at 12:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #18: Monday, August 11 at 14:30 ET $500 + $30 Mixed-Mixed Six-Max Multi-Entry Tournament $75,000 GTD Event #19: Monday, August 11 at 16:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Hold'em $60,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1c): Tuesday, August 12 at 12:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #20: Tuesday, August 12 at 14:30 ET $200 + $15 PL Omaha Hi Six-Max $40,000 GTD Event #21: Tuesday, August 12 at 16:30 ET $104 + $5 NL Hold'em Multi-Entry Flipout Tournament $40,000 GTD Event #22: Wednesday, August 13 at 12:30 ET $200 + $15 Seven-Card Stud $25,000 GTD Event #23: Wednesday, August 13 at 14:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Six-Max Rebuy $75,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1D): Wednesday, August 13 at 16:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #24: Thursday, August 14 at 12:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Hold'em Four-Handed $40,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1E): Thursday, August 14 at 16:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #26: Friday, August 15 at 12:30 ET $200 + $15 NL Omaha Hi-Lo Six-Max $30,000 GTD Event #27: Friday, August 15 at 14:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Rush Rebuy $100,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1F): Friday, August 15 at 16:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1G): Saturday, August 16 at 11:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #28 (Day 1): Saturday, August 16 at 12:30 ET $2,000 + $100 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $500,000 GTD Event #29: Saturday, August 16 at 14:30 ET $200 + $15 PL Omaha Hi Rush $40,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1G): Saturday, August 16 at 16:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1H): Sunday, August 17 at 07:30 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #30: Sunday, August 17 at 11:00 ET $240 + $15 NL Hold'em Six-Max Knockout $250,000 GTD Event #17 (Day 1H): Sunday, August 17 at 12:00 ET $100 + $9 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $300,000 GTD Event #28 (Day 2): Sunday, August 17 at 12:30 ET $2,000 + $100 NL Hold'em Multi-Day Tournament $500,000 GTD FTOPS XXVI Main Event: Sunday, August 17 at 13:30 ET $600 + $35 NL Hold'em Re-Entry Tournament $1,000,000 GTD Visit Full Tilt Poker for more details.
  5. Pavel Plesuv (pictured), who can be found on PocketFives under the user name 3p3nipa, rebounded from a downswing in impressive fashion by taking second in an FTOPS Two-Day Event, winning a separate FTOPS event, and taking down the PokerStars $162 Sunday Six-Max for $122,000 combined… all in just two weeks. --- Follow professional sports tipsters, make your own betting tips, and compete for real cash prizes. Tipdayis the ultimate sports tipping resource. Check it out. --- "I've been playing fewer tables and was trying to play my best," Plesuv told PocketFives, "but of course I was running hot and getting lucky at the same time." As we mentioned, he was coming off a not-so-stellar start to 2014, but he explained, "I understood that all I had to do was continue working on my game, trying to perform the best I can, and I knew the results would come. I think that confidence in yourself plays a big role in getting out of a downswing, so I never gave up." He'll be playing many of the high-stakes SCOOP events on his own dime now and could have had even more of a bankroll had it not been for top-ranked PocketFiver VnilaVader(pictured), who won the FTOPS Two-Day Event, beating Plesuv heads-up. "He played very aggressively," Plesuv said of VnilaVader. "He put a lot of pressure on players and the table wasn't resisting. Since I was trying to keep myself in second position in chips, I was his #1 target, so it wasn't easy. I think he is over-aggressive in some spots, but he definitely knows what he is doing." Plesuv got started in poker five years ago after seeing his college friends reading about strategy and rules. "At the time, I didn't even know about poker," Plesuv admitted. "So, I asked them to show me. I got very interested and give it a shot. I'm still passionate about the game to this day." The Czech player has not one, not two, but three WCOOP Second Chance wins under his belt, which came in 2010, 2012, and 2013. "I've had great success in WCOOPs, which are held in September after an enjoyable summer time," he remarked. "I would say that a good rest was very important both physically and mentally. Taking some time off from poker is very useful and, when you get back to playing, you have a fire in your eyes, if you know what I mean." Before he got into poker, Plesuv was playing pool semi-professionally and was also in university. He still has a few final exams to complete and, after he graduates, you'll see him playing poker more than he currently does. He forecasted, "I'll be playing more live poker during the next few years, hopefully, because I'd like to travel, see the world, and meet different people." Plesuv has $1.3 million in tracked winnings, nearly $1 million of which has come on PokerStars. He's currently at #171 worldwide in the PocketFives Online Poker Rankings, his highest position ever, and #2 in the Czech Republic poker community. FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt Poker. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives and make a deposit to get one free month of PocketFives MTT Training. You'll also get $25 free in most locations. Click here for PocketFives' Full Tilt Poker link. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  6. Last weekend, Scotland's Niall firaldoFarrell (pictured) struck gold in the Full Tilt Poker FTOPS Main Event, coming away with the win for $236,000 following a three-way chop. The tournament, a $635 No Limit Hold'em Re-Entry event, drew over 2,500 entrants, four of whom walked off with six-figures. We caught up with Farrell to break down his landmark score that has shot him up to #35 worldwide in the PocketFives Rankings. --- Follow professional sports tipsters, make your own betting tips, and compete for real cash prizes. Tipdayis the ultimate sports tipping resource. Check it out. --- PocketFives: Huge score! How are you feeling about it? Niall Farrell: I'm still ecstatic. It was a great feeling. PocketFives: What are you going to do with the money? Niall Farrell: I'm not sure. Most of it is going back into my bankroll so I can play higher live games. I'm going to buy a ridiculously priced steak in Las Vegas during the World Series of Poker too! PocketFives: Walk us through how the tournament went in general and what you thought about the skill level at the final table. Niall Farrell: I was in for only one bullet, which was a welcome change. I got short very early, but then doubled up and by the time I was at the mid-stages, I had a pretty good stack. I consciously played super-aggressively during the mid-stages trying to make a real run at the final table. My stack was yo-yoing a good amount and then I got 5-5 in versus K-K for a decent number of chips and rivered a five. With 60 or so left, the field was very tough. When we got to three tables, there were two really tough tables with timex(pictured), Phil Galfond, and LarsLuzak and one easier table that I was fortunate enough to be at. The really strong players at my table were kind of short, so I was able to accumulate fairly easily going into the final table. The final table itself was very tough. timex, LarsLuzak, and yrwthmelthrare all top players. Chilax Chuck was the big chip leader and although I believe he doesn't play full-time, he did a great job of applying ICM pressure on the other stacks, so it was certainly a very tough final table overall. PocketFives: Why did you decide to chop? Niall Farrell: Three-handed, the pay jumps were pretty huge. Chilax Chuck had the chip lead and was willing to give up a little equity to get a chop done and I think that was fair. We left $36,000 to play for that he was in the best chip position to win, so all in all it seemed fair. It was nice to lock up $200,000 too. PocketFives: You're about to pass $2 million in tracked scoresin your profile. Niall Farrell: Yeah, that feels really good. Profit is the main number you look at, but having a high cash total certainly helps with that. Hopefully, we're on the way to moorman1-esque numbers, if somewhat more slowly. PocketFives: What separates you from other poker players out there? Niall Farrell: I think every poker player thinks they're really good at all times. I like to think I'm quite self-aware regarding my abilities. At the start of last year, I began thinking I could make it to the top tier of tournament players. I'm certain I can get there, but it's going to take time and hard work. PocketFives: When you say you're self-aware, is that a trait you've had to develop or how do you know you're self-aware? What tools do you use to analyze your game? Niall Farrell: I think a good indication that you're self-aware is your ROI. If you have a strong ROI, it shows you're not playing lots of games you can't beat but think you can and things like that. I watch a lot of training videos and try to apply different concepts I learn. I also go over my play using PokerTracker to try to identify areas where I can improve. I recently signed with CardRunners as a high-stakes MTT instructor and that has really helped me get back in the groove of self-study and improvement. PocketFives: You had quite a fan base railing your FTOPS Main Event win. How did that feel? Niall Farrell: That felt great. It's a very nice feeling to have so many of your peers hoping you do well. I feel like 70% of them were cheering hard knowing the debauchery that's going to follow the next time we meet up. PocketFives: You mentioned to us earlier that you were a little jet-lagged. What are you up to travel-wise? Niall Farrell: I was in Calgary. My girlfriend is doing her PhD there, so I'm there about half the year. I'm going back to Calgary for SCOOP and then on to Las Vegas. I'm back home in Scotland now, although I'm off to Ireland for the Irish Poker Open and then straight on to Monaco for the EPT Grand Final. PocketFives: What are you looking forward to the most at the WSOPthis year? Niall Farrell: I always look forward to Vegas, but after three weeks there, I'm usually ready to come home. I'm really looking forward to the $10,000 Six-Max event this year. I've never played it and they didn't have it last year. I'm also looking forward to the food and a free meal at Nobu that's owed to me. Getting a house in Vegas is really important. Staying in a hotel for that period of time on the Strip gets unbearable. We stay in a house 20 minutes away from the Strip. It's a really good value and quiet so you can get away from the madness every night, which is great. PocketFives: We understand you want to send a shout out to players in Scotland? Niall Farrell: Yeah, I'd like to send a shout out to the Scotland poker chat. The boys have been crushing it this year. FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt Poker. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives and make a deposit to get one free month of PocketFives MTT Training. You'll also get $25 free in most locations. Click here for PocketFives' Full Tilt Poker link. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  7. Longtime PocketFiver Mark dipthrongHerm (pictured) dominated the competition in the most recent Full Tilt Online Poker Series, or FTOPS, which wrapped up over the weekend. And when we say Herm dominated, we're not just throwing that term around lightly. In fact, the Toronto poker player won the FTOPS XXVI leaderboard by a commanding 219 points. --- PocketFives' news coverage is brought to you by Betsafe, one of the leading suppliers of online gaming products worldwide and a major sponsor of Gumball 3000. Sign up now for great bonuses, €3,000,000 guaranteed monthly, and plenty of live events! --- We logged cashes for Herm in eight FTOPS events: 7th place in Event #1 9th place in Event #3 10th place in Event #4 4th place in Event #8 6th place in Event #9 2nd place in Event #14 25th place in Event #29 79th place in Event #30 All told, all but two of Herm's eight FTOPS cashes were top ten finishes. He secured a four-month Black Card sponsorship in the process, which starts on September 1. As part of his sponsorship, Herm gets 100% cashback on his play at Full Tilt during the four-month period and Black Card Pro merchandise. Here were the final FTOPS leaderboard standings: 1. dipthrong - 1,013 points 2. osziIIator – 794 points 3. ptweedsdro – 784 points 4. ponyo88 – 623 points 5. jbrow8777 – 607 points 6. CHADda2ND – 550 points 7. RushAAKKandQQ – 543 points 8. GoLeafsGoEh – 542 points 9. ImDoneCallin – 524 points 10. Gennadiy As – 508 points In a thread in the Poker Community forum, posters were congratulating Herm on his success, with PocketFives Admin wackyJaxonheralding, "Congrats to dipthrong for winning the FTOPS leaderboard competition. Bosses gonna bawse, nice job!" Swiss PocketFiver Lenail added, "And it's not even close, congrats boss!!! Damn, 6 top 10 finishes in the first 14 events." Herm has $4.5 million in career online tournament earnings in his PocketFives profile and is currently #8 in the PocketFives Poker Rankings, three off his all-time high set in 2010. If you play on PokerStars, you know Herm as shipp itt. He has almost 2,400 in the money finishes for an average of $1,897 apiece. Congrats to Herm on winning the FTOPS XXVI Leaderboard with emphasis! Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  8. Last month, Paul Febers (pictured), known on PocketFives as xxCelticFCxx, was part of a three-way chop of a Full Tilt Online Poker Series $129 No Limit Hold'em Knockout event. His reward was $37,000, the third largest score we've tracked for him. Febers told PocketFives, "I'm feeling pretty good about it, as I've had a ton of close calls recently and have just been getting pretty unlucky deep in big events." He has over $3.1 million in career online tournament cashes along with nearly a quarter-of-a-million dollars from live events. Febers said he was short-stacked for most of the FTOPS Knockout, but was able to grind effectively. After the deal was struck three-handed, there was still $7,000 up for grabs, apparently unbeknownst to the group. "After we all accepted the deal, there was still $5,000 for first and $2,000 for second, but none of us knew that and we were basically just punting it in," Febers narrated. He added, "I noticed when all my friends were laughing their asses off in the Scottish Skype poker group that I was actually playing for money. I made a pretty loose call for it all on the final hand where I 3bet on a 9-X-X-10-10 board when I had 8-8 and he had A-9. So, still no FTOPS jersey for me." His Scottish Skype group has been pretty influential in his development and aptitude in the game, even if he hasn't won an FTOPS jersey yet. As Febers put it, "We're really supportive of each other and really get behind each other when we're deep in tourneys. Plus, we do the occasional hand history review. More than anything, they are a great bunch of lads. Good banter can help you plug along when poker is boring. They are also good for a party when we catch up at live events. I have yet to play a live tourney hangover-free, so it's their fault." Febers' largest tracked cash to date came last year in a MiniFTOPS Two-Day Event for $80,000. When he's not piling up five-figure scores, Febers follows his Celtic football team, "but they've been shocking recently, so that has been pretty boring. I also like to go out with all of the poker lads when I'm not grinding. It would be nice to eventually invest in something so I can rely on an income outside of poker rather than have to depend on poker winnings all the time." Febers is one of several PocketFivers we've talked to who have expressed an interest in a non-poker investment, whether it be real estate, restaurants, or mobile apps, just to name a few we've heard. On what he has planned, Febers commented, "I have had chances to invest before, but I've never been that sure about it because I don't have much of a business mind, so I didn't bother, but it would be nice to get on board with someone who has a good idea for a business.I can't play poker all my life, so I better get a move on." The Scot began playing poker on a site that featured online pool. Eventually, he migrated to the traditional group of online poker rooms and noted that he "had never been more hooked on anything in my life. I was instantly fascinated by it." Our interview wrapped up with Febers wanting to send a shout out to Picasso 2(pictured), who chopped the PokerStars Big $11 in June and final tabled the Sunday Million last weekend. "He brags about it non-stop," Febers said of Picasso 2's Big $11 chop. "It's a tournament that's impossible to win and we kind of talk it up as if it's the most prestigious tourney online." The FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives to get a 100% bonus up to $600 and one free month of PocketFives Training when you make a deposit. Click here to get started. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  9. On the same day that 2014 WSOP November Niner Jorryt Van Hoof won the PokerStars Sunday Warm-Up, Brazil's natfalber11took down the Full Tilt Online Poker Series Main Event for $212,000. More than $2 million was awarded during the final weekend of FTOPS XXVII. A field of 1,767 entrants showed up for the FTOPS XXVII Main Event, each paying $635 to get in or winning a satellite. In the end, the final table shook out as follows: 1. natfalber11 - $212,040 2. paula35 - $141,006 3. B1oshock - $100,719 4. DuerenPlaya - $75,274 5. ftpballerstatus - $56,190 6. Zackattak1327 - $41,347 7. ParusPro - $30,745 8. tinchoarce - $22,264 9. flashdisastr - $15,796 natfalber11 has over $600,000 in online MTT cashes in his PocketFives profile on PokerStars, where he finished second in the Big $55 in August, his largest score to date on that site. He calls Sao Paulo, Brazil home. Meanwhile, Mark dipthrong Herm eviscerated the competition in the FTOPS XXVII Leaderboard, finishing almost 300 points ahead of second place: 1. dipthrong – 1,061 points 2. FeCoNiCuZn – 784 points 3. p00cket00 – 747 points 4. DinamoRiga1 – 635 points 5. TomKKKK1 – 556 points 6. joaoMATHIAS – 544 points 7. Hixx – 536 points 8. nimzon – 531 points 9. Maicoshaa – 521 points 10. ptweedsdro – 511 points 10. cswidler – 511 points For finishing atop the Leaderboard, Herm gets a four-month Black Card Pro Sponsorship contract, starting on January 1. Sponsored players will join the elite Black Card Pro team and receive 100% cash back. Herm won two of the first 12 FTOPS XXVII events and cashed in a third. Full Tilt is currently in the mix of promoting MiniFTOPS XXVII, which starts on January 4. If you don't already have a Full Tilt or PokerStars account, sign up through the links on PocketFives to get a 100% up to $600 deposit bonus and one free month of Tournament Poker Edge or CardRunners. Sign up for PokerStars hereand sign up for Full Tilt here. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  10. After winning two events early on during the 27th Full Tilt Online Poker Series, Mark dipthrong Herm (pictured) took down the competition's leaderboard by a healthy margin. He had 35% more points than the second place player and captured his second straight FTOPS Leaderboard title. Interestingly, he won the FTOPS XXVI leaderboard by about the same margin. PocketFives: Congrats on winning back-to-back FTOPS leaderboards. How are you feeling about it? Mark Herm: It's weird. The past couple of FTOPS, my account seems to run absurdly hot in a lot of the events. Leaderboards have always been my thing since the Absolute Poker days; something about the way my brain works really enjoys the whole leaderboard system. It gives me a clear goal. I've been working a lot on other games and getting coaching from some of the best in the world, so that helps. PocketFives: How much of an achievement is it, in your opinion? Will this ever be done again? Mark Herm: I don't think it's that big of a deal just because I'm kind of a leaderboard freak. I doubt anyone would devote the time necessary along with the knowledge of the way the leaderboard works to do it back-to-back, but who knows. I think I'm probably 50/50 to win it if I try to. PocketFives: Tell us about the two events you won early on. How did those go in general and did they help you in any way mentally for the rest of the series? Mark Herm: I've never won an FTOPS event before those, so it definitely helped with confidence, and the 10-Game bird I won had a tough field. I've always struggled with confidence against tougher players, so that was definitely some sort of milestone for me to win even though it was a lot of Limit, so that felt great. PocketFives: What are some of your immediate poker plans? Mark Herm: This weekend is massive on PokerStars, so that should be fun. I've actually started taking on students for MTTs. I enjoy that and am super pumped about it. I'm really looking to focus a lot of energy on that. I love connecting with people, watching them improve, and I feel like I break down teaching MTTs as well or better than anyone else. I want to continue to work on my Mixed Games, get to the point where I am super confident with them, take those skills to the WSOP, play in some of the $10Ks, and make a name for myself in that arena. PocketFives: What else do you do besides poker? Mark Herm: I'm really interested in spirituality and how the universe works, so I'm always getting into some new thing or reading some new book. I do a lot of work relating to telling the truth and trying to have authentic connections with people. I find that poker and life are similar struggles in terms of battling fears and living from our true, natural selves. I got sober about three years ago and that kind of got my feet wet with spirituality. I found some pretty shocking changes through it, so I have the bug now. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  11. Last weekend, Nathaniel Falber, who is known on PocketFives as natfalber11(pictured), took down the FTOPS XXVII Main Event outright for $212,000. It was a 333x return on his $635 investment and the largest online MTT score we've tracked for him by a factor of 13. PocketFives caught up with the Brazilian to see what went right that day. PocketFives: Awesome job in the FTOPS Main Event. Tell us how you're feeling about it. Nathaniel Falber: I am feeling amazing. Shortly after I won, there is always that feeling that you're dreaming and it didn't actually happen. I haven't slept at all since my win after I started playing my Sunday session really early. To win this tournament playing against the best in the world (it was one of the toughest fields I have played against) was so sick. PocketFives: Can you walk us through how the tournament went in general? Nathaniel Falber: It was not a very good start. At one point, I was down to 6,500 of a 10,000 starting stack then picked up some key hands. Close to the bubble of the tournament, I had 18 big blinds. An aggressive player opened and I shoved with K-Q offsuit for a re-steal. I got cold-called by the small blind instantly and the original raiser snapped. The small blind had T-T. The raiser had K-K. The flop was Q-X-X, the turn was a blank, and the river was a Q. Then, from ITM to about three to five tables left, I had a very comfortable stack. During heads-up when I had a 9:2 chip lead, the other player disconnected. I had an ethical dilemma whether I would wait for the player to return or simply steal his blinds and finish the tournament. I decided to wait and lost practically all of my time bank for about four minutes until he returned. I did not think winning the tournament by stealing a player's blinds who disconnected would be fair. PocketFives: Talk about the play of Zackattak13, who is a longtime PocketFiver. He finished seventh in the FTOPS Main Event. Nathaniel Falber: I had a sick hand against him on the bubble. He was putting a lot of pressure on everyone, shoving and re-stealing lots of hands. I opened under the gun with 7-7 and he snap-shoved from the big blind. I tanked for about three minutes and folded. I knew he was capable of shoving any pair on me as well as many overcards, but I didn't want to take that kind of gamble on that hand. PocketFives: Will this cash change your poker career? Nathaniel Falber: This win will change my career in so many ways that I don't even know where to start. I was congratulated by many top players here in Brazil. The feeling of getting rewarded for studying the game is fantastic. I had plans to travel less next year because I was coming off a two-month downswing on PokerStars, but with this win, I am definitely thinking about grinding a lot online and going to the PCA and WSOP next year. PocketFives: How did you get started in poker originally? Nathaniel Falber: I started when I was about 16 years old. A childhood friend of mine installed PokerStars and I told him right off the bat that I wasn't interested, that I would uninstall the program when he left. I was curious, though, and started playing play money games, but had no idea at all. It was then that we played a tournament at a friend's house for about $20. We agreed there would be no rebuys. I was the first to be eliminated from the tournament without knowing at all what I was doing and they voted to give me a single rebuy. I ended up winning it for $350. In the short-term, that was the best thing for me, but in the long-run it was the worst thing possible. I think the worst thing for the player who is starting is to win because he starts thinking he has a clue and ends up losing it all back. And that's what I did. I was a recreational, breakeven player who occasionally won, but eventually returned everything. I just turned pro in the middle of 2013. I started being backed by top players here in Brazil who took their time to teach me so many things about the game. PocketFives: What do you do away from poker? What else interests you? Nathaniel Falber: I have a very close group of friends from elementary school and high school. We hang out a lot. I really enjoy going out to restaurants and traveling. I am starting to get interested in chess. One of my backers is an excellent chess player and poker player, Fernando Viana. I considered him my mentor when I started playing professionally. FTOPS runs quarterly on Full Tilt. If you don't already have a Full Tilt account, sign up through the links on PocketFives to get a 100% up to $600 deposit bonus and one free month of Tournament Poker Edge or CardRunners poker training. Get started here.
  12. Over the weekend, the 28th Full Tilt Online Poker Series, or FTOPS, wrapped up. The FTOPS XXVIII Main Event drew 1,260 entrants, creating a prize pool of almost $1.2 million, which lapped the $1 million guarantee. In the end, United Kingdom's Mustapha lasagnaaammm Kanit took it down for $239,000. Scarily, the $239,000 score is just the third largest we've logged for Kanit, who finished third in a WCOOP High Roller last September for almost $400,000 officially, his largest online score to date. Last May, he won a SCOOP $2,100 Turbo Re-Entry event for $376,000 officially and has been a force to be reckoned with in larger tournament series. In fact, his five largest career scores stem from SCOOP, WCOOP, and FTOPS events. Here's how the FTOPS Main Event final table cashed out: 1. potta_x_potta - $239,400 (lasagnaaammm) 2. dunphi - $159,440 3. BooBoo825 - $113,715 (Shanks) 4. Forggi - $84,987 5. dougiedan678 - $63,441 (dougiedan678) 6. YeujZat - $46,683 7. Cejakas14 - $34,713 8. hteraaj2001 - $25,137 (jareth3542) 9. paradoxpoker - $17,955 (overthetop43) This is Kanit's first FTOPS win and he now has victories in WCOOP, SCOOP, and FTOPS tournaments. He took down the PokerStars Sunday $109 Rebuy two years ago, won the Sunday 500 in December, and was ranked as high as #9 worldwide on PocketFives last year. Even with all of his success online, Kanit has managed to score big in the live world as well. He is ranked #32 on GPI and took fourth in a PCA High Roller event in 2014 for $492,000. A couple of weeks later, he won preliminary event at the Aussie Millions for another $173,000. The UK player has almost $6 million in combined live and online tournament winnings, according to PocketFives and the Hendon Mob. Congrats to Kanit, who has been a member of PocketFives since 2013, on his FTOPS Main Event win. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook.
  13. Last month, the FTOPS Main Event on Full Tilt Pokerattracted a field of 2,160 entrants and had a prize pool that nearly topped $1.2 million. Your winner: PocketFiver Mustapha Kanit (pictured), who is known as lasagnaaammm. "I'm feeling really good," Kanit told PocketFives in an exclusive interview. "I always go deep in the FTOPS Main Event too. I have gotten to the last four tables three times in the last few years. I love the structure and it has a good field." A chop was briefly discussed, but Kanit asked for more than ICM heads-up and Full Tilt player dunphiturned it down. Instead, the pair played on and Kanit banked $239,000 for the win. There were five PocketFives members at the final table of the FTOPS Main Event. "Shanks played really well and was the best one at the final table. I got lucky against him and he played really well. It was a good final table with a lot of good players," he told us of the final nine. Shanks ultimately came in third place for a healthy $113,000. Kanit will use a portion of his winnings for EPT Monte Carlo and the PokerStars SCOOP. He's historically done well in larger tournament series, as his three largest tracked scores to date have been a $392,000 haul in a WCOOP High Roller, a SCOOP win for $376,000, and his FTOPS Main Event jersey. In fact, his five largest scores are all from tournament series and total almost $1.5 million collectively. "I love to play the big series," Kanit said. "They are amazing. It's a really nice challenge and you have to be focused for 20 days playing against the best. It's the time I enjoy the most during the year and there is a lot of action and big fields. I'm always in the right mode before a big online series because I know it's the right time to play my best and enjoy some online MTTs." Kanit, who has almost $3 million in tracked scores, doesn't have a set schedule when he enters a session. Instead, he adapts: "I like to be really focused when I get deep in something, so I always change my schedule during a session. I play all of the No Limit Hold'em events during big tournament series and all of the Sunday Majors." Kanit plays as potta_x_potta on Full Tilt and can be found at #90 worldwide in the PocketFives Rankings after peaking at #9 last year. He is ranked #35 on GPI. Did we mention Kanit has $2.6 million in live cashes, according to the Hendon Mob? He does. Kanit won the IPT Nova Gorica Main Event four years ago for $276,000 and followed that up later that year with a final table at the Partouche Poker Tour's stop in Cannes for $259,000. His largest live score to date came with a fourth place finish in a PCA High Roller Event in 2014 for almost a half-million dollars. He has seven live scores of over $100,000. We'll end this article with some words of advice from Kanit, who said, "Play focused, study your opponents, and see against whom you can take some marginal spots and against whom it is better to back away. Being short in a tournament is normal, so if you have 10 to 15 big blinds, don't think it's over, but keep playing your best. Eat good food and read too!" Congrats to Kanit on his big FTOPS Main Event win! Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook.
  14. [caption width="640"] Matt 'papamat25' Iles remembers the days of Americans playing in major online series as he takes part in New Jersey's NJCOOP(Borgata photo)[/caption] The New Jersey online poker community is immersed in the PokerStarsNJ NJCOOP series which wraps up next Monday. The series is the largest in the state and one of the few that run during the year. Matt ‘papamat25’ Iles is a PocketFives veteran dating back to 2007, who has had his fair share of battles in the former days of worldwide online series like PokerStars WCOOP. His lifetime online earnings of $3.4 million are an indicator of just how much volume Iles put in before Black Friday left him able to play only in his home state. Iles enjoys the convenience of being able to log on from his home but misses the online life he once had. There is a substantial difference between the community he used to play against and what he faces in New Jersey and Iles tries to take advantage of his experience every chance he gets. “NJ online poker is fairly different from ROW online poker. The overall level of play is very different and I think that NJ is much softer than ROW,” Iles said. “I think that has a lot to do with the U.S. being affected by Black Friday. ROW players were able to continue playing poker online at the highest of levels while the U.S. was in a blackout period that lasted for many years.” In recent weeks, Iles has moved into the top 10 of the New Jersey Online Rankings, and climbed into the top 250 all-time in tournament earnings on PocketFives. The NJCOOP Main Event starts on Sunday and Iles’s series so far includes a respectable five cashes. One of the largest scores of Iles’s career came in the Full Tilt Poker Online Series (FTOPS) in 2010 when he binked for $84,000. The NJCOOP Main Event holds a guarantee of $200,000. Iles won’t win that much money should he come out on top this weekend and has a fond perspective on the days when he would play for large sums on a daily basis. “I think my favorite memory would clearly have to be my win in an FTOPS. It is one of my biggest wins to date,” Iles said. “l also really enjoyed rooting for close friends deep in those events as they had the opportunity to have a life-changing score. The team competitions back then were also significantly larger and more intense due to the larger pool of players.” Iles still gets the itch to go play larger series when they are available. When he sees players post on social media about them, Iles is tempted to book a flight and head to a new grind destination. Iles prefers not to log the miles anymore and stay home instead where he has softer games available to him. When he did travel, Iles remarks that seeing what players across the world were doing helped him to stay sharp with his own game and that has carried over to his success in New Jersey. There is the potential for other states to regulate online poker in the near future and should that day come, Iles is on the fence about what the next step in his poker career might hold. “I will always keep every option open when it comes to my poker career. If another state offers better games i would definitely consider moving even if it was temporary. I will say, though, it is very nice to have online poker available in my home state.” When the NJCOOP Main Event kicks off on Sunday, New Jersey’s best will be in the field to take down the most prestigious online title in the state. Iles will be among them as he attempts to add another piece of online glory to his successful career.
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