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Found 21 results

  1. [caption width="640"] Christoph Vogelsang put together a comeback effort to win the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl. (PokerCentral photo)[/caption] The biggest event in poker reached a final table after nearly a week of play as the Super High Roller Bowl played to its conclusion over the course of Wednesday and Thursday. The $300,000 buy in event brought out the biggest and brightest stars in poker and it was Christoph Vogelsang who managed to top the field of 56 to claim the first place prize of $6,000,000. Jake Schindler came into the final table as the chip leader as the largest bubble of the year was in play. Only seven players would reach the min-cash of $600,000 while one unlucky entrant would have to settle for a $60,000 rebate. Jason Koon started the final table as the short stack and managed to stay alive for a few hours but ultimately succumbed to Schindler. Schindler opened to 90,000 and Koon called out of the big blind. Koon checked the [poker card="kc"][poker card="ts"][poker card="8d"] flop and Schindler continued for 75,000. Koon moved all in for 470,000 and Schindler called. Schindler had flopped a set [poker card="8h"][poker card="8s"] and Koon had a straight draw [poker card="9h"][poker card="7h"]. The [poker card="5d"] turn changed nothing and the [poker card="2s"] wrapped up Koon’s run. A few hours passed before the next victim fell and that was Justin Bonomo, who started Day 3 with the chip lead. Vogelsang limped the small blind and Bonomo raised to 175,000. Vogelsang called and checked the [poker card="9h"][poker card="2d"][poker card="2s"] flop. Bonomo bet 100,000 and Vogelsang called to the [poker card="jc"] turn. The two players checked and the [poker card="qh"] came on the river. Vogelsang checked once more and Bonomo bet 700,000. His bet was met by an all in raise from Vogelsang. Bonomo called and showed [poker card="4s"][poker card="2h"] but was bested by the [poker card="ks"][poker card="tc"] of Vogelsang. The turning point of the final table came shortly after Bonomo’s elimination as Schindler and Pratyush Buddiga clashed in a pot worth almost half of the chips in play. Vogelsang opened for a raise to 90,000 and Schindler called on the button. Buddiga three-bet to 400,000 in the big blind and only Schindler called. Buddiga checked the [poker card="qh"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7c"] flop and called a bet of 400,000 from Schindler. Buddiga check-called for 750,000 more on the [poker card="3s"] turn and checked the [poker card="3c"] river. Schindler moved all in for about 2,000,000 and Buddiga called with [poker card="ad"][poker card="as"] only to be shown [poker card="8c"][poker card="8d"] by Schindler. Buddiga was cut down to 15 big blinds and was eliminated a short while later by Leon Tsoukernik when his [poker card="ac"][poker card="9h"] got in on a [poker card="ad"][poker card="jd"][poker card="7s"] flop against Tsoukernik’s [poker card="ah"][poker card="qs"] but failed to come from behind. Byron Kaverman was the next player to exit the final table stage as Schindler added to this chip lead. Schindler held [poker card="ah"][poker card="as"] against Kaverman’s [poker card="8c"][poker card="8d"] for the latter’s final 895,000. The board ran out clean for Schindler and he moved his stack over 10,000,000 at that point. The final elimination of the night was Tsoukernik as the King’s Casino owner and the lone recreational player left in the field met his end. Vogelsang opened to 130,000 and Tsoukernik moved all in for 2,200,000. Vogelsang called with [poker card="ac"][poker card="as"] and the [poker card="ad"][poker card="td"] of Tsoukernik was drawing dead after a [poker card="kh"][poker card="8d"][poker card="2s"][poker card="kd"][poker card="3s"] run out. Play resumed on Thursday as three-handed play commenced between Stefan Schillhabel, Schindler and Vogelsang. Schillhabel started the day with less than 20 big blinds and was shown the door by Schindler. Schillhabel opened the button to 130,000 and Schindler called with [poker card="td"][poker card="9d"]. Vogelsang put in a raise to 400,000 with [poker card="qd"][poker card="qs"] and Schillhabel moved all in for 1,500,000 with Vogelsang calling behind. Schillhabel picked up a pair on the [poker card="js"][poker card="6s"][poker card="3c"] flop but improved no further. Schindler started heads up play with the chip lead over Vogelsang but Vogelsang refused to go quietly and doubled up a few hours into heads up play to put the match on ice. Vogelsang limped in and Schindler raised to 400,000 with the blinds at 50,000/100,000 with [poker card="8h"][poker card="8s"]. Vogelsang called with [poker card="ah"][poker card="5s"] and the flop came down [poker card="8c"][poker card="3c"][poker card="2h"]. Schindler be 275,000 and Vogelsang called to the [poker card="qh"] turn. Schindler bet 900,000 and Vogelsang called once more. Schinlder checked the [poker card="4d"] river and Vogelsang moved all in for 3,200,000 and Schindler called to see Vogelsang’s rivered straight. Vogelsang finished the job a few hands later and wrapped up his victory. Schinlder limped in with [poker card="jh"][poker card="8h"] and Vogelsang checked with [10s][poker card="7c"]. Vogelsang checked the [poker card="tc"][poker card="3h"][poker card="2d"] flop and Schindler bet 100,000. The bet was met with a call by Vogelsang and he checked the [poker card="7h"] turn. Schindler bet 500,000 and Vogelsang raised to 1,500,000. Schindler called and the [poker card="2c"] came on the river. Vogelsang bet 2,300,000 and Schindler moved all in for 6,200,000. Vogelsang found the right call at the right time and was rewarded with the first place prize of $6,000,000. Final Table Payouts Christoph Vogelsang - $6,000,000 Jake Schindler - $3,600,000 Stefan Schillhabel - $2,400,000 Leon Tsoukernik - $1,800,000 Byron Kaverman - $1,400,000 Pratyush Buddiga - $1,000,000 Justin Bonomo - $600,000 Jason Koon - $60,000
  2. On the heels of the 2018 World Series of Poker, the month of August is usually a reset for many in the poker world after they take some time to recharge from the strenuous Vegas grind. That doesn't mean the news slows down, though. Here are PocketFives’ top stories from August. Former CardPlayer Employee Charged With Theft of $1.1M from Company August closed with a bang as far as news headlines were concerned, after it was made known that Shelby "Anna" McCann, a former employee of poker media outlet CardPlayer, was charged with the theft of $1.1 million from the company. As reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal, McCann had been stealing from the company for quite some time, writing checks to herself, increasing her own salary without approval, and paying off personal debt with company money. READ: Former CardPlayer Employee Charged With Theft of $1.1M from Company Badziakouski Wins EPT Barcelona €100K Super High Roller for €1.65M Mikita Badziakouski has had himself quite the 2018. Entering the December Super High Roller Bowl, Badziakouski had already earned more than $14.5 million on the live felt, including four seven-figure scores. One of those huge scores came in August when Badziakouski won the EPT Barcelona €100,000 Super High Roller. Badziakouski topped a field of 54 entries in the six-figure buy-in tournament to continue his incredible pace in 2018. He won the event for the third-largest score of his live tournament career, €1.65 million, and did so in one of the toughest high-stakes tournaments in the world. READ: Badziakouski Wins EPT Barcelona €100K Super High Roller for €1.65M SHRPO Big 4: Eisen Wins Championship, Foxen Goes Back-to-Back Seminole Hard Rock's 'Big 4' group of poker events has quickly risen the ranks as one of the best tournament festivals in the world. This year's event saw Brandon Eisen, Alex Foxen, Marc MacDonnell, and Jake Schindler earn the four major victories. Foxen's win stuck out in particular, and it’s because the event he won, the $2,650 No-Limit Hold'em event, was the same one he won the year before. In 2018, he took home $208,452 for topping a field of 422 entries. In 2017, he bested a field of 395 entries to win $204,600. READ: Eisen Wins Championship, Foxen Goes Back-to-Back The Year of the Fox: Alex Foxen Now Living the Poker Dream Sticking with Foxen, PocketFives' Jeff Walsh sat down with the poker pro in August to discuss the year he was having, bookended by the two SHRPO wins in South Florida. At the time, Foxen stated that he was "aiming to reach #1 in the GPI rankings." He reached that goal in October and remained #1 on the GPI for the rest of the year. READ: Alex Foxen Now Living the Poker Dream SUNDAY MAJORS: Sunday Million DDoS’d; Moorman, Leonard Win Elsewhere Although the names of Chris Moorman and Patrick Leonard are included in the headline on this story, the big story from Sunday, August 12, was that PokerStars had to cancel many of its tournaments due to a DDoS attack across its network that caused outages in events such as the Sunday Million, Sunday Warm-Up, High Roller, and Bounty Builder High Roller, with refunds and prize money distributed. In more positive news from this Sunday, Moorman and Leonard both scored sizable victories on the platforms of their sponsors. READ: Sunday Million DDoS’d; Moorman, Leonard Win Elsewhere ‘hellohellohello’ Wins August Monthly PLB Title PocketFiver 'hellohellohello' claimed the Monthly PLB title for August with 3,062.21 points. His biggest score came on August 19 when he won the PokerStars Sunday Million for $160,888 and 1,091.60 points. He also won the PokerStars $1,050 Thursday Thrill [Progressive KO], $175K Gtd for $27,270 and 378.15 points during August.
  3. August is the time to go 'Big' or go home. The 2019 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open takes place at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, FL and will run from August 1-13 with a 27-event schedule culminating in the return of their four featured tournaments, dubbed ‘The Big 4’. The schedule gets off to a fast start with a multi-flight $1 million guaranteed $600 DeepStack and is followed by a full slate of tournaments with wide-ranging variants and buy-ins that will attract every level of player, leading up to the starting dates of The Big 4. The Big 4 Since 2015, the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open has hosted The Big 4, four individual tournaments that all play down to a final table together so they can be live-streamed on the same day at the same time. This year the Big 4 include: $5,250 SHRPO Championship - $3 million guarantee $2,650 NLHE - $1 million guarantee $1,100 NLHE - $500,000 guarantee $25,500 High Rollers - $2 million guarantee. Since 2013, SHRPO has been a favorite destination for poker pros from all over the world. Headed into their fifth year of the The Big 4 promotion, organizers are looking forward to making 2019 the biggest Big 4 yet with all eyes on the $5,250 Main Event. $5,250 SHRPO Championship In 2014, the year before SHRPO Championship was a part of The Big 4, Daniel Colman took down the $5,300 tournament for $1.44 million. The $5 million guaranteed SHRPO Championship event drew 907 runners in 2015 and the big story was that Colman returned to the final table, looking to go back-to-back and defend his 2014 SHRPO Championship title. In the end Colman couldn’t get there, falling in third place for $310,000 as Omar Zazay went on to win the $1,000,000 first-place prize for a career-high score. Pennsylvania’s Paul Volpe also made an appearance at this final table, but he ended up hitting the rail in eighth place for $100,000. Even though registration dipped in 2016, the tournament still held a $5 million guarantee. That meant there was a healthy overlay for the field of top-tier players who made the trip. Ryan Fair and Joe Serock joined regular high rollers Seth Davies and Jason Koon at the final table where Koon ended up taking home the title and his very first seven-figure score of $1 million. In 2017, the tournament reduced the guarantee to $3 million when Australia’s Martin Kozlov picked up the largest cash of his career by winning the $754,083 first-place prize. Matt Berkey finished in third place this year while Aaron Mermelstein, Adam Levy, and Joe Kuether all also had a seat at the final table. Then, just last year, Brandon Eisen denied Jeremy Ausmus the title in 2018, taking home $771,444 for the win. Familiar faces Joseph Cheong, Jared Griener and Ryan D’Angelo also made the final table in what was the largest SHRPO Championship field in The Big 4 era with 914 runners. Big Buy-In, Big Moments The Big 4 have had plenty of standout performances outside of the Main Event over the years. As one might expect, the $25K High Roller has always been flush with big-name pros looking to take home six-figure scores. In 2015, Florida’s All-Time Money List leader, Jason Mercier, took down the $25K High Roller for over $517K in his own backyard, surviving an all-star final table that included runner-up Ian O’Hara, Sean Winter, Ankush Mandavia, Barry Hutter, David ‘Doc’ Sands, and Phil Laak. One year later, Marvin Rettenmaier denied Daniel Colman another SHRPO title by taking first place and over $787K. John Andress took home the High Roller title in 2017 and then in 2018, Jake Schindler topped the 123 player field for a score of over $800K after defeating Shaun Deeb heads up. Another amazing Big 4 feat has been the performance of the GPI #1-ranked player Alex Foxen who, in 2017 took down the $2,650 NLHE for $204,600 and then followed that up by defending his title in that even in 2018 for another $208,452. All the action from the 2019 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open begins on August 1 with all four of the Big 4 set to be live-streamed on August 13. 2019 SHRPO Schedule of Events DATE EVENT # EVENT TIME BUY-IN 8/1 1A Deep Stack NLH Flight A (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 11:00 AM $600 8/1 1B Deep Stack NLH Flight B (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 6:00 PM $600 8/2 1C Deep Stack NLH Flight C (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 11:00 AM $600 8/2 1D Deep Stack NLH Flight D (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 6:00 PM $600 8/3 1E Deep Stack NLH Flight E (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 11:00 AM $600 8/3 1F Deep Stack NLH Flight F (Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 6:00 PM $600 8/4 1 Day 2 1:00 PM -- 8/1 2 Omaha 8 Or Better (Re-Entry) - $30,000 GTD - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/2 3 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry) - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/3 4 PLO 8 (Re-Entry) - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/4 5 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) - $50,000 GTD - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/4 6 Purple Chip Bounty (Single Re-Entry) - $100,000 GTD 3:00 PM $1,700 8/5 6 Day 2 2:00 PM -- 8/5 7 Seniors 50+ (Re-Entry) - One Day Event 11:00 AM $400 8/5 8 Big Stack Black Chip Bounty NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $50,000 GTD - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/5 9 PLO (Re-Entry) - One Day Event 3:00 PM $400 8/5 10 Big Stack NLH (Re-Entry) - $30,000 GTD - $5,250 Championship Seat Added - One Day Event 6:00 PM $150 8/6 11 Six-Max NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $100,000 GTD - One Day Event 11:00 AM $600 8/6 12 Big O (Re-Entry) - One Day Event 12:00 PM $400 8/6 13 Omaha 8/Stud 8 (Single Re-Entry) - One Day Event 3:00 PM $400 8/6 14 Eight-Handed Turbo NLH (Freeze-Out) - One Day Event 5:00 PM $1,100 8/7 15 Eight-Handed NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $200,000 GTD - One Day Event 12:00 PM $2,200 8/7 16 Jeff Conine Celebrity Poker Classic - One Day Charity Event 7:00 PM $300 8/8 17 Six-Max Big Stack NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $100,000 GTD - One Day Event 12:00 PM $1,100 8/8 18 Super High Roller NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD - Held In Salon East 1:00 PM $50,000 8/9 18 Day 2 1:00 PM -- 8/8 19 Six-Max PLO (Single Re-Entry) - One Day Event 3:00 PM $400.00 8/9 20A SHRPO Championship Day 1A (Single Re-Entry) - $3,000,000 GTD 11:00 AM $5,250.00 8/10 20B SHRPO Championship Day 1B (Single Re-Entry) - $3,000,000 GTD 11:00 AM $5,250.00 8/11 20 Day 2 12:00 PM -- 8/12 20 Day 3 12:00 PM -- 8/13 20 Final Table Televised And Live Streamed As Part Of The Big 4 1:00 PM -- 8/11 21 NLH (Single Re-Entry) - $1,000,000 GTD 2:00 PM $2,650 8/12 21 Day 2 12:00 PM -- 8/13 21 Final Table Televised And Live Streamed As Part Of The Big 4 1:00 PM -- 8/12 22 NLH (Re-Entry) - $500,000 GTD 11:00 AM $1,100 8/13 22 Final Table Televised And Live Streamed As Part Of The Big 4 1:00 PM -- 8/12 23 High Roller (Re-Entry) - $2,000,000 GTD - Held In Salon East 12:00 PM $25,500 8/13 23 Final Table Televised And Live Streamed As Part Of The Big 4 1:00 PM -- 8/11 24A NLH Day 1A (Re-Entry) - $50,000 GTD 5:00 PM $150 8/12 24B NLH Day 1B (Re-Entry) - $50,000 GTD 5:00 PM $150 8/13 24 Day 2 - Held In The Poker Room 5:00 PM -- 8/12 25 PLO (Re-Entry) 6:00 PM $2,650 8/13 25 Day 2 - Held In The Poker Room 3:00 PM -- 8/13 26 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry) - $30,000 GTD - Held In Salon East - One Day Event 11:00 AM $400 8/13 27 NLH (Re-Entry) - $500,000 GTD - Held In Salon East - One Day Event 12:00 PM $10,000
  4. Get inside the mind of Chris 'moorman1' Moorman. As an 888poker ambassador Moorman has played poker on camera a countless number of times. But in this latest video for 888poker and PokerGO, the man with over $16 million in online earnings jumps into the role of the commentator to break down a now-famous hand from Poker Central’s Super High Roller Bowl between two heavyweight poker pros in Daniel Negreanu and Mikita Badziakouski. “I remember watching it at the time, live on the stream, and I was amazed by the end results,” Moorman said. [ptable zone="NJ Online Poker Promos"][ptable zone="888poker"][ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"] In the video, the former #1-ranked PocketFiver takes a moment to give props to the high caliber of players at the table including Ali Imsirovic, Jake Schindler and Brian Rast. Then he proceeds to break the hand down. Street-by-street the PocketFives Legacy Award winner offers his insight and analysis, even taking issue with some of the decisions that were made. He discusses the importance of re-evaluating your thought process and decisions when information you weren’t expecting is introduced, such as when Negreanu is faced by an overbet by Badziakouski on the river. Ultimately, Negreanu finds himself in a tight spot where he makes an amazing laydown where many people might have called off. “It looks amazing because it’s right,” Moorman says. “Definitely in-game though you have a weird sort-of spidey sense feeling. Your gut is telling you to fold and there are definitely times I’ve listened to my gut over the theory and made an exploitable fold and been right.” Check it out below.
  5. As the launch of Pennsylvania online poker approaches, PocketFives takes a look at how players from that state did at the 2019 World Series of Poker. Pennsylvania poker players accounted for 2,439 total entries at the 2019 WSOP, ranking the state 15th out of all states to have players participate in the series. Per official numbers sourced from the WSOP, US-player participation made up for 129,154 entries from live tournaments at the 2019 WSOP. With 2,439 of those entries coming from PA poker players, Pennsylvania accounted for nearly 2% of the US participation at the 2019 WSOP. Pennsylvania’s participation wasn’t that far off of what New Jersey’s was, another state with legalized online gambling and online poker. Players from NJ accounted for 3,501 total entries in live events at the 2019 WSOP, which was just more than 2.7% overall. US players accounted for 18,571 cashes at the 2019 WSOP, which was the most for any single country. Players from Pennsylvania accounted for 338 of those cashes, including some of the top performers below. Pennsylvania's Top Performers at the 2019 WSOP Of all the Pennsylvania poker players to compete at the 50th annual WSOP, Garry Gates was the highest earner with $3,006,881 won. The bulk of Gates’ winnings came via his fourth-place finish in the WSOP Main Event, a score worth $3,000,000 that landed Gates in the top 10 of the Pennsylvania all-time money list. Gates also cashed in the $1,500 Monster Stack and $1,000 Mini Main Event at the 2019 WSOP. Thomas Parkes of Alburtis, PA, finished 59th in the 2019 WSOP Main Event and took home $142,215. He was the second-highest finisher from the Keystone State. Chad Power (89th - $82,365) and Kenny Smaron (92nd - $69,636) also placed in the top 100. Jake Schindler, the PA poker all-time money list leader at time of writing, cashed three times at the 2019 WSOP. His first was a fifth-place finish in the $10,000 Heads-Up Championship worth $31,151, his second was in the WSOP.com $500 Turbo Deepstack for $1,113, and his third was a 67th-place result in the WSOP Main Event for $117,710. Joe McKeehen, winner of the 2015 WSOP Main Event and second on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list, cashed just once at the 2019 WSOP. He finished 65th in the $1,500 Millionaire Maker event. John Hennigan, who is originally from Philadelphia, only cashed one time at the 2019 World Series of Poker, but that cash was a victory in the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship to the tune of $245,451. Hennigan defeated Daniel Negreanu in heads-up play to win that tournament. Matt Glantz, the player who was fourth on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list at time of writing, finished in the money of seven WSOP events in the summer of 2019. His best finish was a third-place result in the $10,000 Dealer’s Choice Championship for $139,126. He also had a deep run in the WSOP Main Event, finishing 205th for $50,855. PA Players in the WSOP Big 50 In the record-breaking WSOP Big 50, 345 entries came from Pennsylvania poker players. Of the 28,371 entries, PA poker players made up 1.22% of the total field. As it pertains to US participation in the Big 50, US players made up 23,972 entries in this tournament, meaning Pennsylvania players accounted for 1.44% of US participation in the Big 50. The highest finish in the Big 50 for a Pennsylvania player came from Fabio Garofalo. Garofalo, who hails from Mercer, PA, took 66th and turned a $500 entry into $14,958. Pennsylvania’s Gregory Fishberg (90th - $10,233) and James Gilbert (98th - $8,539) also placed in the top 100 of the 2019 WSOP Big 50. PA Online Poker Gives Potential for More WSOP Participation With the launch of PA online poker looming, exciting times are ahead. Legal, regulated online poker platforms in the Keystone State should help grow the game in the region and be a catalyst for increased participation by Pennsylvania players in the WSOP. Although it will take some time for the state to get up to speed with the likes of its neighbor, New Jersey, Pennsylvania's upside is quite large. New Jersey has a growing online poker market in the 11th most populated state in the country with nearly 9 million people to pull from. Pennsylvania will be drawing from the fifth largest population of nearly 13 million people when online poker goes live. The potential is there and it wouldn't be out of the question to see Pennsylvania's WSOP participation meet or surpass that of New Jersey's in 2020 or 2021.
  6. The record-setting WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic wrapped up at Bellagio in Las Vegas, with the $10,400 Main Event attracting a huge field of 1,001 entries and featuring some of poker's biggest names. In addition to the Main Event, the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule featured several events with five-figure buy-ins and one with a six-figure price of entry. Here are the winners from a tremendous week of poker in Sin City. The biggest winners overall from these high buy-in events, excluding the $10,400 Main Event, were Jake Schindler, Jason Koon, Seth Davies, Chris Hunichen, and Dominik Nitsche. Although he didn't earn the most money, it's certainly worth noting that Sam Soverel cashed in four of these events for a total of $314,500. No one else cashed in more than two. Ladines Wins First $10,000 PLO Event The first two high roller events on the schedule were both $10,000 buy-in pot-limit Omaha tournaments. The first one attracted 35 entries for a $350,000 prize pool and saw the top five places make the money. Joshua Ladines took the event’s title and $128,090 top prize, with both Brian Rast and Sam Soverel finishing in the money. Joshua Ladines - $128,090 John Riordan - $102,910 Jonathan Abdellatif - $56,000 Brian Rast - $35,000 Sam Soverel - $28,000 Soverel Takes Second $10,000 PLO Event In the second $10,000 PLO event, a group of familiar faces was back in the money. Soverel topped the field of 29 entries to win the title and $116,000, Ladines finished third for $46,400, and WPT Five Diamond wonder boy Ryan Tosoc scored fifth for $23,200. Tosoc notably finished second in the Season XV WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic for $1.134 million before going on to win the event in Season XVI for $1.958 million. Sam Soverel - $116,000 Jonathan Depa - $75,400 Joshua Ladines- $46,400 Michael Song - $29,000 Ryan Tosoc - $23,200 Hennigan Captures $10,000 8-Game Mixed Title If you know Bellagio, you know it’s home to the most iconic high-stakes poker room in the world, Bobby’s Room. It’s where the game’s elite compete for astronomical cash-game stakes, but during WPT Five Diamond some of those players shifted their focus to tournament play, specifically in the $10,000 buy-in 8-Game Mixed High Roller. The tournament generated 24 entries, and it was none other than five-time World Series of Poker gold bracelet winner and WPT Champions Club member John Hennigan taking home the top prize of $110,400. John Hennigan - $110,400 Ben Yu - $67,200 Randy Ohel - $38,400 John Racener - $24,000 Loeser and Fox Chop First $25,000 High Roller In the first of three $25,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournaments on this year’s WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic slate, 42 entries were generated to create a prize pool of $1.05 million. The top six places paid, and the top two spots went to Manig Loeser and Elio Fox in a chop that earned each player more than $300,000. Loeser scored first place for $321,300, and Fox took second for $308,700. Manig Loeser- $321,300 Elio Fox - $308,700 Jake Schindler - $168,000 Dan Smith - $105,000 Cary Katz - $84,000 Nick Petrangelo - $63,000 Petrangelo Wins Second $25,000 High Roller The second $25,000 buy-in tournament attracted 47 entries and generated a $1.175 million prize pool. The top seven places reached the money, with several notables cashing. None earned more than Nick Petrangelo, though, who chopped the event heads up with Sergio Aido to take home the winning prize of $289,944. Aido scored $287,634 for second. Petrangelo was coming off a sixth-place result for $63,000 in the first $25,000 event of this series. Soverel, who finished in the money of the first two high rollers on the schedule, including winning one for $116,000, finished sixth in this event for $70,500. Nick Petrangelo - $289,944 Sergio Aido - $287,634 Seth Davies - $256,672 Ben Yu - $117,500 Kazuhiko Yotsushika - $94,000 Sam Soverel - $70,500 Rainer Kempe - $58,750 Davies Victorious in Third $25,000 High Roller The third and final $25,000 high roller tournament on the WPT Five Diamond schedule drew 50 entries for a $1.25 million prize pool. The top eight places reached the money, and it was Seth Davies taking the title and $341,920 in first-place prize money. The win came just days after Davies took third in the previous $25,000 high roller event during the series of $256,672, as you can see above. Davies did a deal with Isaac Haxton in second place, who earned $320,580. The money was filled with notable high rollers, including Alex Foxen taking third for $175,000. Foxen has had himself quite a 2018 and is closing it strong both on the live felt and the virtual felt. In the online world, Foxen recently achieved a new all-time high in the top 100 of the PocketFives Online Poker Rankings. You'll also notice Soverel's name appearing in the in-the-money places once again, this time for fifth place, worth $100,000. Seth Davies - $341,920 Isaac Haxton - $320,580 Alex Foxen - $175,000 David Peters - $125,000 Sam Soverel - $100,000 Christoph Vogelsang - $75,000 Rainer Kempe - $62,500 Elio Fox: $50,000 Schindler Defeats Koon for $100,000 Super High Roller Victory The final big buy-in event from the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule this year was the $100,000 Super High Roller. The event drew 37 entries to Bellagio for a $3.7 million prize pool and the top six spots reached the money. Earning the $1.332 million first-place prize was Jake Schindler. Adding that score to the $168,000 he won earlier in the series for taking third place in one of the $25,000 high rollers, Schindler scored $1.5 million in prize money at Bellagio this December. Schindler beat out Jason Koon for the win, and Koon took home $888,000 for his second-place finish. Jake Schindler - $1,332,000 Jason Koon - $888,000 Chris Hunichen - $592,000 Dominik Nitsche - $370,000 Ben Tollerene - $296,000 Talal Shakerchi - $222,000
  7. The fifth edition of the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl crowned its champion on Wednesday night, with Isaac Haxton topping the exclusive field of 36 entries to earn the $3.672 million prize. "I just feel f***ing great," Haxton said in the moments following the big win. "I'm just super happy, even a little relieved it's over. Obviously, a day like today is pretty stressful, in the best way." With the victory, Haxton moved to more than $23.65 million in live tournament earnings, which bumps him up ahead of Jake Schindler and into 13th place on poker's all-time money list. "I'm gonna have more than a couple drinks and probably eat at least 1,500 calories of something disgusting," Haxton said about his plans to celebrate, with a smile of course. "That should do it, and then hopefully sleep for about 12 hours. That would be a perfect victory party for me." Super High Roller Bowl V Results 1st: Isaac Haxton - $3,672,000 2nd: Alex Foxen - $2,160,000 3rd: Stephen Chidwick - $1,512,000 4th: Talal Shakerchi - $1,188,000 5th: Adrian Mateos - $972,000 6th: Igor Kurganov - $756,000 7th: Ali Imsirovic - $540,000 For the past three days, the PokerGO Studio at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas played host to the high-stakes affair that attracted the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Fedor Holz, and Justin Bonomo, just to name a few. After Monday’s Day 1, 27 players remained. After Day 2, just seven were left, all in the money and guaranteed a $540,000 payday. Bubbling the money in eighth place was Mikita Badziakouski. Haxton started the final table as the chip leader and Ali Imsirovic was bringing up the rear with the shortest stack left. After starting the final table with 875,000 and blinds of 10,000/15,000 with a 15,000 big blind ante, Imsirovic worked his way to nearly 1.9 million before taking a dive in the other direction that ultimately resulted with his seventh-place elimination. Imsirovic lost a pot to Stephen Chidwick that knocked him all the way back down to 520,000 and then got the last of his stack in with pocket jacks against the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="5c"] of Haxton. Haxton flopped a flush draw and hit it on the turn to knock out the 23-year-old in seventh. Next to go was Igor Kurganov, who was never able to get any real momentum going on the final day. On his final hand, Kurganov, on the button, moved all in for 350,000 over the top of a raise to 65,000 from Chidwick with the blinds at 15,000/30,000 with a 30,000 big blind ante. Talal Shakerchi reraised all in from the small blind and Chidwick folded. Shakerchi had pocket tens to Kurganov’s pocket sevens, and the board ran out [poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"][poker card="5h"][poker card="4c"][poker card="Ac"] to send Kurganov home in sixth place. Shakerchi continued to climb after he busted Kurganov and even worked his way into the chip lead, but then he started to slide the other way as Alex Foxen increased. Adrian Mateos was next out the door when he was eliminated in fifth place by Foxen, falling in the 25,000/50,000 level with a big blind ante of 50,000. Mateos raised and then four-bet all in with pocket nines against Foxen, who made the call with the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ks"]. Foxen flopped a king and held from there to send the young Spaniard to collect his $972,000 payout. With Foxen out in front by a large margin and Haxton in second place, the final four players moved into Level 21 with the blinds at 30,000/60,000 with a 60,000 big blind ante. Shortly after the level went up, Shakerchi went out, and he was busted by Haxton. Haxton opened to 140,000 and Shakerchi reraised all in for 1.285 million. Haxton called with two nines and won the flip against Shakerchi's [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Td"]. Shakerchi collected $1.118 million for his finish. Not too long after, Haxton added another chunk of chips when he busted Chidwick in third place. The two got the money in a blind-versus-blind situation, with Chidwick on the ropes holding the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Qh"] to Haxton’s pocket jacks. To make matters worse for Chidwick, Haxton flopped top set to leave him needing runner-runner. It didn't come and Chidwick was out in third for $1.512 million. Although Foxen held the lead going into heads-up play - his 5.84 million to Haxton's 4.965 million - Haxton made short work of the match. Haxton won the first heads-up pot to take a 2-1 chip lead and Foxen could never recover from there. On the final hand, Haxton limped the button holding the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Jh"]. Foxen raised to 225,000 out of the big blind with the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="8d"] and Haxton jammed. Foxen called to put himself at risk for 1.33 million, but he wouldn’t be doubling up. The final board ran [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Qc"][poker card="6c"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Js"] to give Haxton two pair and the victory. For Foxen, his second-place finish was worth a whopping $2.16 million and put quite the cap on an incredible year that saw him win more than $6.6 million on the live felt. "For tournament results, there's no competition," Haxton said of where he ranked this Super High Roller Bowl triumph. "This is my biggest score ever and the other ones that come somewhat close are second- and third-place finishes. This is easily the best tournament result I've ever had and it's an event I love. It feels great to win here at ARIA. This is the highlight of my tournament career, no doubt." Widely known as a high-stakes cash game player, Haxton certainly does his fair share of competing in the largest tournaments in the world. As for how he wins this much money, Haxton will take it any way he can get it. "If I can win $3.6 million, I'm not going to be picky about how I win it," Haxton said. "It can be in the lottery, on Wheel of Fortune, I don’t care. Give me the $3.6 million. I’m not going to complain about how I won it."
  8. Over the last 12 months, Jake Schindler has proven to be a legitimate threat in high roller tournaments around the world. He finished runner-up in the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl, runner-up in the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open High Roller, third in a Poker Masters $50,000 event, runner-up in the US Poker Open Main Event. In March, he picked up two wins in Aria High Rollers, but on Wednesday in Barcelona he posted what could be considered a breakthrough win. Schindler beat Stephen Chidwick heads-up and overcame a final table that included Erik Seidel, Jason Koon and Bryn Kenney to win the partypoker MILLIONS Grand Final €100,000 Super High Roller for €1,750,000 ($2,163,174 US), the second biggest score of his career. The day began with 11 players still in contention for the €1.75 million first place prize but Koray Aldemir, Dominik Nitsche, Mikita Badziakouski, Steffen Sontheimer all failed to make the money, and once Keith Tilston went out in seventh, the remaining six players were all in the money. The first player to bust was Seidel. Down to less than five big blinds, Seidel three-bet all in over Kenney's UTG raise. Kenney called and showed [poker card="as"][poker card="tc"] which put him ahead of Seidel's tabled [poker card="ac"][poker card="5c"]. The [poker card="7c"][poker card="3h"][poker card="2h"] gave Seidel more outs but the [poker card="td"] turn and [poker card="ah"] river were no help and he was left with a sixth place finish. Despite picking up the first in-the-money elimination, things went south from that point on for Kenney. Kenney was on the button and raised to 350,000 and Schindler called from the big blind and then checked after the [poker card="th"][poker card="6c"][poker card="5d"] flop. Kenney bet 305,000 and Schindler raised to 1,200,000. Kenney moved all in for 4,410,000 total and Schindler called. Kenney showed [poker card="8c"][poker card="7s"] for an open-ended straight draw while Schindler showed [poker card="6d"][poker card="6h"] for middle set. The [poker card="ac"] turn was a blank and Schindler improved to quads with the [poker card="6s"] river to bust Kenney in fifth. A little over an hour later two more players were sent packing in quick succession by Chidwick. From the button, Chidwick raised to 400,000 and Koon moved all in from the small blind for 5,975,000. Chidwick called and turned up [poker card="6c"][poker card="6h"] while Koon showed [poker card="3d"][poker card="3h"]. The board ran out [poker card="kd"][poker card="jd"][poker card="th"][poker card="js"][poker card="7c"] to eliminate Koon. Left with just three big blinds, Jean-Noel Thorel moved all in for 600,000 from the button and Chidwick and Schindler called from the small and big blind respectively. The [poker card="ts"][poker card="6s"][poker card="2h"] flop saw both remaining players check. The [poker card="5h"] turn got Chidwick to be enough for Schindler to fold. Chidwick showed [poker card="kh"][poker card="th"] for top pair with the second nut flush draw. Thorel needed help with the [poker card="qd"][poker card="8c"] but got none after the [poker card="9h"] river to go home in third. Heads up play began with Schindler holding just 54% of the chips in play. The two players traded the led back and forth for almost three hours before Schindler was able to finish Chidwick off. On the final hand, Schindler raised to 875,000 and Chidwick called. The flop came [poker card="ad"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2s"], Chidwick checked, Schindler bet 500,000 and Chidwick called. The turn was the [poker card="5c"] and Chidwick checked again, Schindler bet 1,800,000 but Chidwick raised to 5,100,000. Schindler called and both players saw the [poker card="7s"] river. Chidwick moved all in and Schindler called. Schindler showed [poker card="qs"][poker card="6h"] for a bluff while Schindler showed [poker card="as"][poker card="3h"] for a wheel and the final pot of the night. Final Table Payouts Jake Schindler - €1,750,000 Stephen Chidwick - €1,100,000 Jean-Noel Thorel - €726,000 Jason Koon - €500,000 Bryn Kenney - €340,000 Erik Seidel - €240,000
  9. Chalk up another win for Bryn Kenney in 2019. This time, there was no deal to be made as Kenney knocked out four of his final five opponents en route to a lightning-fast victory in the US Poker Open Event #7: $25,000 No Limit Hold’em for $450,000. The 60-entry field was narrowed down to a high-rolling who’s who final table of six. Kenney and Ben Yu were among the chip leaders however, there were four other formidable players in Nick Petrangelo, Keith Tilston, Nick Schulman and, eventual runner-up, Jake Schindler, who were all capable of coming from behind. Final Table Payouts 1. Bryn Kenney - $450,000 2. Jake Schindler - $300,000 3. Ben Yu – $210,000 4. Keith Tilston - $150,000 5. Nick Schulman - $120,000 6. Nick Petrangelo - $90,000 It only took a few hands before the bustouts began. The action folded to Nick Petrangelo in the small blind and he jammed with his remaining 13 big blinds holding [poker card="jc"][poker card="6c"]. Kenney, sitting in the big blind, ended up making the call holding [poker card="kc"][poker card="8h"]. The flop came [poker card="3d"][poker card="2h"][poker card="4s"] giving Petrangelo additional outs with a gutshot straight draw. The [poker card="kh"] on the turn put Kenney even further ahead in the hand. The [poker card="3c"]river ended Petrangelo’s run in Event #7 for $90,000. Roughly ten minutes later, Nick Schulman was all in for his tournament life. From the button, Schulman open-shoved his 12 big blind stack with [poker card="qh"][poker card="td"]. Then, from the small blind, Keith Tilston reshoved over the top with [poker card="ac"][poker card="8d"]. Ben Yu got out of the way and, with the cards on their backs, the duo saw a flop of [poker card="ah"][poker card="qs"][poker card="7h"] providing both players a pair. The [poker card="kd"] turn gave Schulman a few more outs to the straight but the [poker card="8s"] river was no help the PokerGO commentator. Schulman finished in fifth place for $120,000, his second recorded cash of 2019. Even though he had just busted Schulman, Tiltson wasn’t long for this final table. Kenney, having both blinds covered, open-shoved from the button with [poker card="3s"][poker card="3c"]. Tilston, in the big blind, ended up making the call with [poker card="as"][poker card="jc"], putting his tournament at stake. The flop came [poker card="2c"][poker card="ts"][poker card="kc"] providing Tilston some additional gutshot outs but the [poker card="7d"] fell on the turn and the [poker card="td"] on the river, giving the hand to Kenney's pocket threes. Tilston bowed out in fourth place for $150,000. It marks his fifth lifetime cash at the USPO. Ben Yu, who entered the day as the final table chip leader, clashed with Kenney in a huge hand which, in the end, left Yu crippled. Only a few hands after that confrontation, Kenney finished the job. Yu, with less than three big blinds, stuck it in from the small blind with [poker card="td"][poker card="6d"] and Kenney snap called holding the [poker card="qs"][poker card="js"]. The board ran out [poker card="3c"][poker card="4s"][poker card="kh"][poker card="as"][poker card="9s"] giving Kenney the flush and ending Yu’s run in third place. Yu picked up $210,000 for his efforts, his third cash of the 2019 USPO series. Kenney held a massive chip lead headed into heads up play, but Schindler started chipping away at it by winning the first few hands. However, as he had for the entirety of this brief final table, Kenney ended up on top in the most important hand. Kenney limped the button with the [poker card="kd"][poker card="jc"] and Schindler shipped his [poker card="ac"][poker card="7d"] which Kenney quickly called. The flop [poker card="2d"][poker card="9c"][poker card="kh"] flop put Kenney in the lead. The turn came the [poker card="2h"] and the river the [poker card="8s"] securing the win for Kenney and providing Schindler the runner-up result and $300,000 in prize money. Kenney, the Aussie Millions Main Event winner, takes home $450,000 for the victory, sending his lifetime career live earnings north of $27,000,000. The final table for Event #8: $25,000 8 Game Mix takes place on Thursday. USPO Streaming Schedule On PokerGO DATE EVENT TIME (ET) 02/21/19 Event #8: $25,000 8-Game 5 p.m. 02/21/19 Event #9: $50,000 No-Limit Hold'em Early 8 p.m. 02/22/19 Event #9: $50,000 No-Limit Hold'em Final 5 p.m. 02/22/19 Event #10: $100,000 No-Limit Hold'em Early 7:30 p.m. 02/23/19 Event #10: $100,000 No-Limit Hold'em Final 5 p.m. If you don’t have a subscription to PokerGO, sign up today using the promo code "POCKET5S" for $10 off the PokerGO annual plan.
  10. The 2019 World Series of Poker Main Event is down to 35 players, all guaranteed $261,430 and vying for the event’s $10 million first-place prize. After what was an incredibly entertaining day of poker, Nick Marchington is in the lead with 39.7 million. 21-Year-Old Marchington Leads the Way Marchington hails from England and is 21 years old. Despite his youth, he’s a professional poker player, but Marchington’s success in the game comes from the online poker world and not so much the live tournament world. Entering this event, Marchington had just $12,415 in live tournament earnings, stemming from one cash at this WSOP. Marchington was one of the biggest stacks remaining as the night neared its close, and then he knocked out Ian Pelz in 37th place with pocket sevens against the [poker card="As"][poker card="Qc"] to solidify his position as chip leader. Behind Marchington on the leaderboard are Hossein Ensan with 34.5 million, Timothy Su with 34.35 million, and Milos Skrbic with 31.45 million. Those are the only players above 30 million in chips. Top 10 Chip Counts Nick Marchington - 39,800,000 Hossein Ensan - 34,500,000 Timothy Su - 34,350,000 Milos Skrbic - 31,450,000 Henry Lu - 25,525,000 Garry Gates - 25,025,000 Duey Duong - 21,650,000 Warwick Mirzikinian - 20,700,000 Dario Sammartino - 19,850,000 Cai Zhen - 19,800,000 Dzivielevski and Sammartino Remain Yuri Dzivielevski, a Brazilian who already has one gold bracelet this summer, bagged 13.75 million for Day 7. Dzivielevski is a former PocketFives #1 and the only former #1 remaining in the field. Dario Sammartino, who is one of the best players in the world still in search of a WSOP gold bracelet, finished with 19.85 million for Day 7. Wild and Crazy Hands Steal the Day 6 Show Day 6 was filled with plenty of action, that’s for sure. There was an enormous clash between Su and Sam Greenwood on the main feature table that could go down as one of the greatest hands in poker history. It will also go down as one of the ultimate bad beats. On one of the outer tables, Garry Gates nailed an ace on the river to crack Robert Heidorn’s pocket kings. On another outer table, at pretty much the same time as the hand between Gates and Heidorn, Kevin Maahs beats aces with his pocket kings to knock out Chang Luo. The incredible hand between Greenwood and Su started with Su opening to 500,000 from the cutoff position. Greenwood three-bet to 2.5 million out of the big blind, and Su called. The flop was [poker card="Qd"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="4c"] and Green bet 1.8 million Su called to see the [poker card="Js"] land on the turn. Greenwood bet 3.5 million and Su raised all in. Greenwood made the call for about 11.5 million total and turned up his [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Ac"]. Su had the [poker card="Tc"][poker card="9c"] for a brave semi-bluff. Needing a king or an eight on the river, Su got it when the [poker card="Kc"] hit to complete his straight. Greenwood was eliminated in 45th place for $211,945. On the hand involving Gates and Heidorn, Heidorn opened to 550,000 from middle position before action folded to Gates in the big blind. He three-bet to 2.1 million. Heidorn reraised all in to put Gates to the test. Gates tanked, then called to put himself at risk for 11.35 million total, and turned up the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Kd"]. Heidorn had the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Kh"]. The [poker card="Qc"][poker card="6s"][poker card="4d"] flop and [poker card="5h"] turn weren’t what Gates needed, but the [poker card="Ad"] on the river allowed him to survive with the double up. For the one with Luo and Maahs, it started with Luo opening with a raise to 550,000 from early position. After Milos Skrbic reraised to 1.675 million on the button, Maahs reraised to 3.75 million out of the big blind. Luo shoved all in for 8.1 million, Skrbic folded, and Maahs made the call. Luo had the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ah"], and Maahs had the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Kc"]. The board ran out [poker card="Qc"][poker card="8c"][poker card="3c"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="Tc"] to give Maahs a club flush and crack the aces of Luo. Luo was eliminated in 43rd place for $211,945. Esfandiari, Hunichen, Hachem Among Day 6 Eliminations Day 6 of the 2019 WSOP Main Event began with 106 players remaining. Greg Himmelbrand was the first player knocked out and then the eliminations began to flow. Four-time gold bracelet winner Jeff Madsen was knocked out in 102nd place, Mukul Pahuja went out in 95th, and Antonio Esfandiari busted in 82nd. Esfandiari’s bust out came after he was hurt in a big hand against Sammartino that left him with just a handful of big blinds. Esfandiari got the last of his chips in against Chris Hunichen with the [poker card="5d"][poker card="5h"] but Hunichen’s [poker card="8c"][poker card="8d"] did the trick. Daniel Hachem, son of 2005 WSOP Main Event winner Joe Hachem, fell in 79th place, and Pennsylvania's Jake Schindler headed out the door in 67th place. Romain Lewis busted in 60th, and Lars Bonding fell in 55th. Hunichen, a former PocketFives #1 player and the one who knocked out Esfandiari, busted in 54th place for $173,015. Another one of the top tournament players in the world was knocked out in 40th place when Alex Foxen was eliminated. The highest finish for a Pennsylvania poker player in the 2019 WSOP Main Event belonged to Thomas Parkes. He took 59th for $142,215. Day 7 On Friday On Friday, the 2019 WSOP Main Event will play from 35 down to its final table of nine, however long that may take. Action is set to kick off at 12 p.m. PT from the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino, and if Friday is anything like Thursday, buckle up for a thrilling ride.
  11. Hosted by PocketFives President and Editor in Chief Lance Bradley and poker writer Matt Clark, The Fives runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Lance and Matt are all over the Heartland Poker Tour Westgate Las Vegas fiasco, from the fake guarantee to the half-price offer some players got in the closing hours of registration. They get into how this is a bad look for poker and what this might mean for the HPT moving forward in Las Vegas and other cities. They also talk about Jake Schindler's dominance in high roller events coming off of his big win at the partypoker MILLIONS Grand Final €100K Super High Roller and get into some good news for online poker players in New York. They close the show with a discussion about what it means to be a poker ambassador in 2018 and how the "big 3" sites are handling their rosters. DOWNLOAD THIS EPISODE IN ITUNES GET THIS EPISODE ON STITCHER
  12. The U.S. Poker Open starts Thursday and has the potential to be one of the best events of the year. More than a handful of the best players in the world are confirmed for some, if not all, of the eight-event schedule. All participating players are worthy of previewing but we decided to cut right to the chase and look at six that stand out. Three No Limit specialists, two Mixed Game maestros and one dark horse. Bryn Kenney The 2017 American GPI Player of the Year made the majority of his over $8 million in earnings in events like the ones in USPO. Kenney, who won a Poker Masters event in 2017, is one of the betting favorites to win take home the US Poker Open Championship, which will be awarded to the best overall player. Already in 2018, Kenney is off to a strong in high rollers thanks to a third-place run in the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Super High Roller. Kenney measures himself against a high standard and the USPO is the perfect chance for him to show why he is the greatest high roller player in the world. Adrian Mateos If Kenney was the best of the high rollers in 2017, Mateos proved once again why he’s #1 in terms of all-around No Limit excellence. This year is off to an excellent start for the young Spaniard with a final table run at the PCA Main Event and two second-place finishes at the Lucky Hearts Poker Open. Mateos won his third WSOP bracelet last summer and picked up two cashes in the Poker Masters. At only 23-years-old, Mateos is already proving himself to be one of the best in the game. USPO could be the tipping point that places him at the top of the game. Jake Schindler Alongside Tom Marchese, Schindler is the co-ruler of the ARIA High Roller Series. Schindler has cashed 26 times in ARIA high roller events is second all-time on that list and earnings. The Super High Roller Bowl served as Schindler’s coming out party to a national audience and built on his dominance against the tough fields assembled at ARIA. Schindler is a quiet threat and always locked in to pick up more wins at his home away from home. Brian Rast The mixed game aspect of USPO is drawing the best all-around players to ARIA. Rast is an excellent No Limit player but also excels in all games. The two-time $50,000 Poker Players Championship winner plays literally every game in the book in Ivey’s Room at ARIA and excels in the tournament format. Rast won the inaugural Super High Roller Bowl in 2015 and is one of the most well-rounded players in the USPO field. Isaac Haxton The android brain of Haxton has optimized No Limit and Pot Limit Omaha in the online realm. Those skills have downloaded onto the live felt. Haxton consistently performs well in High Rollers across the world and is well adjusted to playing in the USPO format. The full eight-game slate in the Mixed Game Championship is fine for Haxton, who made the final table of the 2017 PPC. Almedin Imsirovic Who? Well, 'Ali', as he’s called online, is only 23-years-old as of this week but already competing and winning against the best in the world. Imsirovic entered the $25,000 high rollers at Seminole and PCA and won a $10,000 turbo to wrap up the Bahama series. He might be the one of the youngest in the field but Imsirovic’s experience of playing online for years gives him the necessary reps to take on the world’s best, making him the perfect dark horse for USPO.
  13. When Ali Imsirovic took his seat at the final table of Poker Masters Event #5: $25,000 No Limit Hold'em he was likely the least known poker pro of the star-studded six. But even though Imsirovic, the 2018 Borgata Spring Poker Open Champion, may not be one of the faces regularly seen during high-stakes broadcasts, he didn’t let the moment get away from him. He navigated the tough final table and in the end, claimed his first Poker Masters title and a career-high cash of $462,000. Generally considered one of the toughest high-stakes tournament players in the world, Aria regular Jake Schindler started the day with a healthy chip lead. On the other end of the chip counts, poker celebrity Daniel Negreanu had just a few big blinds left to try and make something happen. Joining the pair in the final six was Ben Yu, Brian Rast, Jason Koon, and Imsirovic. Roughly 20 minutes into play Negreanu took a stand with his short stack. Yu raised from the hijack holding [poker card="8s"][poker card="8c"] and Negreanu flat called holding the [poker card="5c"][poker card="2c"]. Leaving himself less than a third of a big blind, Negreanu put it at risk on the [poker card="td"][poker card="9h"][poker card="5d"] flop. Yu called and the board ran out with the [poker card="3s"] on the turn and the [poker card="7s"] on the river leaving Negreanu’s small pair unimproved. Negreanu hit the rail in sixth place for a $99,000 score. It is his second sixth-place finish of the 2018 Poker Masters. The eliminations continued just minutes later when Imsirovic raised in the cutoff with [ak][poker card="kd"]. Koon, who now held the shortest stack remaining, shipped the chips holding [poker card="ah"][poker card="tc"]. Imsirovic made the quick call and Koon soon discovered he was dominated. The flop left little hope for Koon as it came [poker card="ac"][poker card="kh"][poker card="4c"]. Looking for some running cards, the [poker card="qs"] provided a few outs to the straight for the Triton SHR Short Deck Champion. But when the [poker card="9h"] completed the board, Koon was eliminated in fifth place. He adds another $132,000 to his over $11.3 million in earning in 2018. This was Koon’s third cash of the series. As the final table wore on, Schindler lost the chip lead, lost a substantial hand that doubled up Ben Yu and found himself as the short stack with four players left. Folded to Schindler in the small blind, he open shipped his five big blinds with [poker card="8c"][poker card="6d"]. Imsirovic in the big blind quickly called showing down [poker card="ac"][poker card="9s"]. Both players whiffed the [poker card="kd"][poker card="jc"][poker card="4h"] flop. But when the [poker card="ad"] turned, Schindler was drawing dead. The river brought an inconsequential [poker card="8s"] and Schindler headed to the cashier for his $165,000 fourth-place payday. Rast, who had the chip lead when Schindler hit the rail, then lost a pair of very big hands. First, doubled up Imsirovic and then quickly second doubled up Yu when Yu hit a 3-outer on the river. It wasn’t much longer after that second double through that Rast had to play for it all. Imsirovic, now the chip leader, was applying pressure to both shorter stacks. He moved all in from the button with [poker card="6s"][poker card="6d"]. Rast, in the big blind made the call only seeing the [poker card="ac"]. The [poker card="3d"] was his second hole card and he was going to have to catch up to stay in the game. The board ran out [poker card="qh"][poker card="ts"][poker card="8c"][poker card="th"][poker card="2h"] offering no help to Rast. Rast collected $214,500 for third place. Heads up play between Yu and Imsirovic didn’t last very long. After a few hands, Imsirovic limped on the button with [poker card="5s"][poker card="5h"]. Yu moved all in from the big blind with [poker card="ac"][poker card="6d"] and Imsirovic made the quick call. It was a flip for Yu’s tournament life and to give Imsirovic the win. The flop came [poker card="kh"][poker card="8d"][poker card="5d"], providing a set for Imsirovic and Yu needed running cards to catch up. The turn was the [poker card="2h"] leaving Yu with no outs. He finished the tournament as the runner-up and earned $330,000 for his efforts. Imsirovic takes the first place prize of $462,000 holding pocket fives. In his winner’s interview dedicated the performance to his father who he credited with teaching him strategy games. “A year ago I was watching [Stefan Sontheimer] win everything and I was like it would be really cool if I could do that in a few years. I’m very surprised it came this fast but I’m super fortunate and I want to dedicate this win to my dad.” Event #5 Final Table Payouts 1. Ali Imsirovic - $462,000 2. Ben Yu - $330,000 3. Brian Rast - $214,500 4. Jake Schindler - $165,000 5. Jason Koon - $132,000 6. Daniel Negreanu - $99,000
  14. For the second day in a row, Ali Imsirovic stood tall at the end of a Poker Masters event as champion and now finds himself in control of the race for the Purple Jacket. Imsirovic beat Koray Aldemir heads-up on Thursday night to win Event #6 ($50,000 No Limit Hold'em) for $799,000. On Wednesday night, Imsirovic beat Ben Yu to win Event #5 ($25,000 No Limit Hold'em) for $462,000. “I don’t know how to put this into words, this is surreal,” Imsirovic said. “I’ve dreamt about winning the Poker Masters Purple Jacket, but I never thought this would be possible. Right now I don’t want to think about it, because I don’t want to be let down too much if I don’t end up winning it.” The final table began with Imsirovic holding just over half the chips in play and Aldemir, Jake Schindler, Seth Davies, Justin Bonomo, and Sam Soverel all chasing him. It took an hour for the first elimination to go down and unsurprisingly, it was Imsirovic doing the work. From the cutoff, Imsirovic raised to 50,000 with [poker card="jh"][poker card="8s"] and called off his last 15,000 from the big blind with [poker card="kd"][poker card="2s"]. The [poker card="9h"][poker card="5h"][poker card="3s"] flop was a safe one for Bonomo, but the [poker card="jd"] turn put Imsirovic ahead. Bonomo didn't improve on the [poker card="as"] river and was eliminated in sixth place for $141,000. That cash put Bonomo's 2018 earnings past the $25,000,000 mark. Seven hands later, another player was sent to the rail and once again it was at the hands of Imsirovic. From UTG, Imsirovic raised to 70,000 with [poker card="qh"][poker card="qs"] before Soverel moved all in for 225,000 holding [poker card="ah"][poker card="kh"]. Imsirovic called and then watched the board run out [poker card="6h"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2c"][poker card="9h"][poker card="2d"] to give him the pot and bust Soverel in fifth for $188,000. Imsirovic continued to push the action and ten hands later, he busted yet another player. Action folded to Imsirovic in the small blind and he moved all in with [poker card="7c"][poker card="5d"] and Schindler called form the big blind with [poker card="4h"][poker card="4s"]. The [poker card="jc"][poker card="9s"][poker card="5c"] flop put Imsirovic ahead and he stayed there through the [poker card="8h"] river and [poker card="ac"] turn to eliminate Schindler in fourth for $235,000. Four hands after Schindler exited, so did Davies. Aldemir folded the button, Imsirovic limped from the small blind with [poker card="6c"][poker card="5c"] and Davies responded by raising to 110,000 with [poker card="tc"][poker card="ts"]. The flop came [poker card="ac"][poker card="6d"][poker card="5d"] and Imsirovic checked. Davies bet 155,000 and Imsirovic moved all in and Davies called with his tournament at risk. The turn was the [poker card="3d"] and the river was the [poker card="qs"] to bust Davies in third for $352,500. Heads up play began with Imsirovic holding a 2.5-1 lead over Aldemir. The final two played heads up for over three hours with Aldemir eventually battling all the way back to take the chip lead. Imsirovic quickly retook it and soon after picked up his fifth elimination to win his second Poker Masters event in as many days. The final hand saw Aldemir move all in with [poker card="9h"][poker card="8d"] and Imsirovic called with [poker card="kc"][poker card="qh"]. The [poker card="as"][poker card="6c"][poker card="3d"] flop kept Aldemir's hopes alive but the [poker card="qs"] on the turn ended all the drama and the tournament, leaving Aldemir collecting $517,000 while Imsirovic picked up $799,000. Final Table Payouts Ali Imsirovic - $799,000 Koray Aldemir - $517,000 Seth Davies - $352,500 Jake Schindler - $235,000 Sam Soverel - $188,000 Justin Bonomo - $141,000 Bryn Kenney - $117,500 The win also earned Ismirovic 300 points towards the Purple Jacket race and propelled him past Brandon Adams for the lead. Along with his two victories, Ismirovic also has an eighth place finish from Event #1 ($10,000 No Limit Hold'em) and now lead Brandon Adams by 150 points. Purple Jacket Standings Ali Imsirovic - 660 points Brandon Adams - 510 Isaac Haxton - 480 Jake Schindler - 390 Ben Yu - 360 Keith Lehr - 300 David Peters - 300 Jonathan Depa - 270 Jason Koon - 240 Koray Aldemir - 210 The only event left on the Poker Masters schedule is the $100,000 Main Event which began Thursday evening.
  15. The World Poker Tour Gardens Main Event came to a conclusion on Thursday when Simon Lam turned in a fantastic final table performance to secure his first WPT title. Lam defeated the 584 player field, taking home the $565,000 first place prize, a brand new Mercedes and claiming a spot in the WPT Champions Club. The event, the first held at the Gardens Casino in Los Angeles, generated a prize pool of over $2.9 million. The final table was flush with talent including high roller phenom Jake Schindler, controversy magnet Men “The Master” Nguyen, poker pro Jared Griener, Los Angeles local Saya Ono, recent World Series of Poker bracelet winner Craig Varnell as well as Lam himself. Lam held a comfortable lead at the start of the Day 5. He started the final table with over 100 big blinds but with so many experienced players vying for the trophy, it was still anybody’s tournament to win. It took nearly four hours for the first player of the final table to fall. Decked out in his New England Patriots attire, Griener, the California based pro, shipped his stack of just over 10bb in while under the gun. Varnell, having him slightly covered reshoved holding [poker card="ac"][poker card="kh"]. Griener was a slight favorite showing down [poker card="jh"][poker card="jd"]. The red jacks, however, did not hold as Varnell spiked an ace on the flop and one on the river for good measure. Griener finished his tournament in sixth place for $115,885. Roughly 40 minutes later, after having slipped down to under 10 big blinds, Ono made her last stand. Folder to Ono on the button she shipped her short stack holding [poker card="qh"][poker card="jh"]. Nguyen peered down at [poker card="ac"][poker card="jc"] and isolated Ono by reshipping. The turn completed a club flush for “The Master” sending Ono to the rail. Her fifth-place finish for $151,995 is a career-high score for Californian, nearly quintupling her previous highest cash. After losing a large pot to Nguyen (which resulted in Nguyen shouting “All you can eat, baby!”), Varnell dropped into the 10bb range. In a blind versus blind confrontation with Schindler, Varnell moved all in with the [poker card="as"][poker card="js"]. Schindler made the call with his [poker card="qs"][poker card="tc"]. Schindler out flopped Varnell on the [poker card="td"][poker card="6s"][poker card="6c"] flop. Needing some help for his tournament life, Varnell watched as two bricks completed the board. It has been an incredible couple of months for Varnell who earned his first bracelet in Event #19: $565 Pot Limit Omaha during the WSOP and now earns another $201,615 for his fourth place finished at WPT Gardens. With the elimination of Varnell, the stacks evened out between Lam, Schindler, and Nguyen. Play continued three-handed for another hour and a half before the next elimination took place. Simon Lam picked up [poker card="ad"][poker card="ks"] and raised the button. Nguyen then, looking down at the [poker card="td"][poker card="7d"] shipped his roughly 30bb stack. Lam took his time but eventually made the call. Men “The Master’s” tournament life was at stake on a 62/38 flip. Lam took an even bigger lead on the [poker card="kh"][poker card="js"][poker card="8h"] flop. However, Nguyen still had a gutshot straight draw, The [poker card="5c"] turned and when the [poker card="6c"] completed the board, the Nguyen show came to an end. Men Nguyen finished his run in third place for $270,430. Heads-up play began between Lam and Schindler with Schindler a 4.5-1 chip underdog. It only took 10 hands of heads-up play for Lam to find his winning moment. In a bit of a cooler hand, Lam raised and Schindler made the call. Lam held [poker card="jc"][poker card="9s"] barely out-pipping Schindlers [poker card="jd"][poker card="8d"]. When the flop came [poker card="js"][poker card="7c"][poker card="2c"] the writing was on the wall. Neither could get away from top pair. The action unfolded as Schindler checked, Lam bet, Schindler check-raised and Lam applied maximum pressure by moving all in. Schindler, with roughly 10 big blinds remaining quickly made the call. The board ran low and clean for Lam, allowing his nine kicker to play. Schindler ended the evening in second place for $366,740. The score pushes his to over $20 million in lifetime earnings. Lam takes home $565,055 for first, a career-high cash. He also secured a $15,000 entry into the 2019 WPT Tournament of Champions and a brand new Mercedes to take him there. The World Poker Tour's next stop begins on August 3 in Oklahoma for WPT Choctaw.
  16. [caption width="640"] James Romero earned almost million and etched his name on the WPT Champions Cup with his Season XV Five Diamond Win.(WPT photo/Joe Giron)[/caption] The World Poker Tour Five Diamond Poker Classic is one of the tougher WPT fields each year. The Bellagio event draws some of the best poker players in the world to Las Vegas each December and the list of previous champions is a testament to that. Daniel Negreanu, Gus Hansen, Mohsin Charania, Dan Smith and Antonio Esfandiari are just a few of the players who have captured the title. The record-sized field that showed up in Las Vegas this past week for the Season XV Five Diamond Classic was star-studded, but in the end it was a relatively unknown player, playing his first WPT event, that managed to capture the title and the nearly $2,000,000 first place prize. James Romero topped a final table that included Justin Bonomo, Igor Yaroshevskyy and Jake Schindler to earn the first live win of his career. Romero came in to the final table with over 40% of the chips in play and never relinquished his lead, eliminating four of the five players that stood between himself and the title. Yaroshevskyy was one of just two players at this final table and came in*with the fourth largest stack, but that didn't stop him from being the first*player eliminated. With blinds at 50,000/100,000, Yaroshevskyy moved all in*from UTG for 1,420,000 with [poker card="ad"][poker card="ts"] and Romero called from the big blind with*[poker card="qd"][poker card="qs"]. The [poker card="7h"][poker card="2h"][poker card="2d"] flop left Romero ahead and when Yaroshevskyy failed* to connect with the [poker card="9c"] turn or [poker card="3d"] river he was out in sixth place. The*$268,545 sixth place cash is he third biggest of his career, falling behind his*second place in a 2015 World Series of Poker $5000 NLHE Turbo ($303,767) and a*fourth place finish at the 2015 WPT LA Poker Classic ($333,680). Two hands later Justin Bonomo joined Yaroshevskyy in the payouts line.*Schindler raised to 225,000 from the cutoff before Bonomo moved all in for*995,000. Schindler called and tabled [poker card="7c"][poker card="7d"] while Bonomo showed [poker card="5h"][poker card="5s"]. The*[poker card="qc"][poker card="jc"][poker card="7s"] flop left Bonomo needing runner-runner fives. The turn was [poker card="ad"] to*officially seal Bonomo's fate before the [poker card="ah"] hit the river. Three hands later Romero found himself another victim. Action folded to Alex*Condon on the button and he moved all in for 1,170,000 with [poker card="qc"][poker card="9c"] and Romero*called from the big blind with [poker card="5c"][poker card="5s"]. The [poker card="kc"][poker card="jh"][poker card="8h"] flop gave Condon*extra outs but neither the [poker card="as"] turn or [poker card="7d"] *were any help and he was*eliminated in fourth place. After three eliminations in the span of five hands, the pace slowed down but at no point Romero continued to build up his lead. After 2.5 hours of three-handed play, and with Romero holding almost 75% of the chips, he used his overwhelming lead to bust another player. Ryan Tosoc folded his button, Romero called from the small blind before Schindler moved all in for just over 4,000,000 from the big blind. Romero called and tabled [poker card="kh"][poker card="jc"] while Romero showed [poker card="6c"][poker card="6h"]. The board ran out [poker card="kd"][poker card="3s"][poker card="2c"][poker card="8d"][poker card="2s"] to give Romero the pot and eliminate Schindler, the only other player with a WPT final table appearance, in third place. Heads up action between Romero and Tosoc began with Romero holding a 7-1 lead. Tosoc managed a nearly full double early, but it only took 16 hands for Romero to end the party. Down to just 2,000,000, Tosoc moved all in pre-flop and Romero called. Tosoc tabled [poker card="5c"][poker card="5s"] but found himself up against Romero’s [poker card="kd"][poker card="kh"]. The [poker card="ah"][poker card="jd"][poker card="9c"][poker card="4s"][poker card="6c"] run out made the elimination official and crowned Romero as champion, eliminating Tosoc in second place for $1,124,051. The $1,938,118 first place score doesn’t even push Romero’s lifetime live tournament earnings over $2,000,000. The 27 year old was previously focused on online poker and Las Vegas cash games. The event drew a field of 791 players, a record for this event. The previous largest Five Diamond field was in 2007 when 664 players entered the then-$15,000 buy-in event. The buy-in was lowered to $10,000 in 2010. The next WPT event is the Borgata Winter Poker Open in January. Final Table Payouts James Romero - $1,938,118 Ryan Tosoc - $1,124,051 Jake Schindler - $736,579 Alex Condon - $494,889 Justin Bonomo- $345,272 Igor Yaroshevskyy - $268,545
  17. There’s a reason that summer in Las Vegas is often called ‘poker player summer camp’ and it’s not just because the World Series of Poker is going on. During the summer bracelet chasing takes center stage in Sin City but over the past decade, many other Las Vegas poker rooms have battled with the WSOP for the hearts and minds of the poker playing public by consistently scheduling competing summer series that offer players excellent value through great structures and big guarantees. Here's a quick look around the city at some of those non-WSOP tournaments keeping poker players in action. ARIA Poker Classic and High Roller Series There are basically two tournament series happening at the same time inside the ARIA. The first is for the everyday player. It's filled with buy-ins right around the $400 and $240 buy-in level, The ARIA Poker Classic. The second is home to the high rollers - small fields, high buy-in, and elite competition - The ARIA Summer High Roller Series. Even though the Rio has offered some big buy-in tournaments early in the WSOP schedule, many of the biggest names in the game have been spending more time in the ARIA this summer simply because it’s where the biggest games are. Before he was embroiled in controversy for folding out of order at the WSOP, Sam Soverel bested the 23 player field in Aria High Roller 11 on May 30 for a $235,880 payday. He was joined in the money by David Peters (runner-up, $189.620), Jake Schindler (3rd, $92,000) and Poker Central founder Cary Katz (4th, $57,500). Australia’s Michael Addamo won the $10,000 buy-in ARIA High Roller 12 on June 4 for $136,000, defeating Germany’s Manig Loeser heads up. Loeser finished in second place taking home $88,400 for his efforts while fellow countryman Rainer Kempe finished in third for $54,400. Spain’s Juan Dominguez is having a nice start to his summer as he went back-to-back at the ARIA. First, he topped the 45 player field of the $10,000 ARIA High Roller 13 for $153,000 and the very next day he won the $10,000 ARIA High Roller 14 for another $126,682. Ben Yu was the official runner-up, taking home $125,318 while the familiar faces of Jake Schindler (3rd, $67,500), Manig Loeser (4th, $45,000) and Ali Imsirovic (5th, $36,000) also made final table appearances. The 2019 Wynn Poker Classic One of the nicer properties on the Las Vegas strip, the Wynn/Encore hosts the Wynn Poker Classic and through the first week and a half, players have been turning up en masse to play in their daily offerings. The Wynn has been offering multiple $1K+ buy-in tournaments and some well-known names have been showing up for them. On June 3, 484 runners showed up for the $1,100 in which the UK’s Louis Salter took home the $98.452 first-place prize and defeated a final table that included Connor Drinan (runner-up, $64,295) and Lily Kiletto (7th, $13,907). The next day 432 players jumped into the $1,600 buy-in which saw Florida’s Evan Teitelbaum hold off one-time WSOP Main Event champion Joe McKeehen to take down the $138,209 first place prize. McKeehen settled for $89,018 as the runner-up. Other notable final table players included Mark Radoja (5th, $31,068) as well as Entourage and Ballers music supervisor Scott Vener (9th, $12,468). Keven Stammen bested the 618 runners of the $550 daily on June 6 for a $50,940 payday while Justin Liberto defeated Germany’s Bart Lybaert on June 8 to win a $1,100 tournament for $94,659. Lybaert’s $61,412 runner-up prize helped push him to over $3M in career earnings. The DeepStack Championship Poker Series at The Venetian The Venetian continues to provide large field tournaments for players looking for action outside the Rio. They have a partnership with the Mid-States Poker Tour for some of their larger events but also provide daily tournaments for players looking for buy-ins under $1,600. Although the Deepstack Series starts in the middle of May, the $1,100 ‘Summer Kickoff ‘ Event from May 27-29 brought out 518 runners where World Poker Tour Champion Brian Altman took home the $90,905 first-place prize. He defeated Robert Kuhn who ended up with $84,390 as the runner-up. The final table included popular Twitch Poker streamer Ricky ‘RatedGTO’ Guan who finished in fourth for $36,364, a top-3 score for his young career. Pot Limit Omaha cash game grinder Sasha Liu outlasted the 144 runners in the $800 Pot Limit Omaha 8-Max Bounty to take down the $20,161 first-place prize. Canadian Kevin Barton fell in second place for a $11,995 payday.
  18. With the successful season-opening WPT Gardens Poker Festival in their rearview mirror, the World Poker Tour rolls into Oklahoma for WPT Choctaw. Taking place from August 3-7 at the Choctaw Casino & Resort, it’s the fourth year in a row that the WPT has traveled to the Sooner State as a part of their main tour. The Main Event The 5-day Main Event is a $3500 + $200 buy-in, the same as it has been in years past. This year, it comes with a $1 million guaranteed prize pool, which happens to be the lowest guarantee on the Main Tour. But take note, unless something goes drastically wrong, that guarantee is merely a marketing tool. In the three previous years, WPT Choctaw has never had a prize pool less than $3 million. Every player to make ever make a WPT Choctaw six-handed final table have earned themselves a six-figure payday. Even though attendance for this event has been drifting slightly lower year-over-year, with 2017’s field dropping below 1,000 runners for the first time since they started holding it, they are still very likely to see a multi-million dollar prize pool. To get a piece of that prize pool players can choose from two starting flights. The first flight kicks off at 12:00 pm CT on Friday, August 3 and the second the next day at the same time. This tournament is unlimited re-entry and players can play both flights and fire away as many times as they need to. The catch is, this is not a best stack forward tournament so participants that bag at the end go Day 1A but would rather take a shot the next day would need to forfeit their stack. As players have come to expect from the WPT, the structure is deep. Players start with 40,000 in chips (400bb) and 60-minute levels. New To Choctaw While the buy-in and structure may be familiar to those who have played in the past there are a couple new wrinkles to enhance the Oklahoman experience. The wildly popular big blind ante format is in play. The big blind pays the antes for the entire table, helping speed up the rate of play and taking a little bit of the burden off the dealer. Additionally, once the tournament is one table out of the money a 30-second shot clock will be adopted. Players have 30 seconds to act on their hand, with four "time extension" chips that can be used for those tough spots. Once a player is out of time extension chips and the clock runs out, if the player has not declared an action they will be forced to check their hand, or, if facing a bet, fold. A Look Back Choctaw has been an early-season stop on the WPT since Season 14. In its first year, 1,175 runners helped create a prize pool of nearly $4 million. Jason Brin won it all and walked with $682,975 for a career-high cash. Brin’s final table featured some of poker’s top talent including Andy Hwang, WPT Garden's runner-up Jake Schindler, WSOP 2018 Final Tablist Alex Lynskey and 4-time WPT Champion Darren Elias. In Season 15, poker pro James Mackey took the Choctaw title for his first WPT victory. The $666,758 was second largest payday of his esteemed career helping him to $4.1 million in lifetime earnings. Then, just last year, it was the recreational player from Austin, Texas Jay Lee who won $593,173 for just his third career recorded cash. Are You Qualified? For those looking to take a shot at getting into the Main Event for the minimum, Choctaw offers plenty of opportunities to satellite into the Championship Event. Beginning on July 28, there are $100 Super Satellites into any of the $300 tournaments. Then on starting on Tuesday, July 31 the casino offers as many as 15 opportunities for players to win a seat into the $3500 + $200 Main Event. Most are of the Mega Sattliest are of the $300 variety, with a few $500 Megas to ensure that as many qualifiers as possible can grab a seat in the field. WPT Choctaw Main Event gets underway on August 3 with daily live updates provided by the World Poker Tour.
  19. It might have been a day earlier than some were expecting, but the bubble of the World Series of Poker came and went on Monday, leaving 1,286 players in the money just as the day was coming to a close. Preben Stokkan Goes From 93,000 to 2,184,000 Norwegian poker pro Preben Stokkan is the only player with over 2,000,000 chips after bagging up 2,184,000 and the chip lead. Stokkan, who has never previously cashed the Main Event, started the day with 93,000 and trailed 75% of the field. Andrew Brokos had the opposite kind of day after starting third in chips and finishing second. The Baltimore native more than doubled his stack on Monday and ended up with 1,906,000. Ryan Dodge sits third with 1,800,000. The Bubble Burst for Ryan Pochedly The bubble is usually one of the most tension-filled moments of the Main Event. It can be chaotic for players and problematic for tournament staff. Not so much this year. Just as hand-for-hand play was about to start, Pennsylvania's Ryan Pochedly called all-in with ace-king on an [poker card="8d"] [poker card="7h"] [poker card="3s"] [poker card="kd"] [poker card="7c"] board only to be shown 7-6 by his opponent for trip sevens. Pochedly did not leave empty-handed though. He was awarded a seat to the 2020 WSOP Main Event. READ: Pochedly Leans On WSOP Experience, Excited for PA Online Poker Chris Hunichen Bags 6th Best Stack to Lead Former #1s All but two of the 10 former #1-ranked PocketFivers that started Day 3 made it to Day 4 and none made more noise than Chris Hunichen. After starting the day with 307,600, Hunichen finished with 1,618,000 and sits sixth in the chip counts. Two other players worked themselves into the top 50 on Monday. Fabrizio Gonzalez finished with 1,190,000 and Yuri Dzivielevski was right behind him with 1,083,000. The other four members of the #1 fraternity to advance to Day 4 include current #1 'lena900' (693,000), Kevin Saul (633,000), Cliff Josephy (435,000), Paul Volpe (380,000) and Taylor Paur (148,000). The only former #1s to not make it through the day were Calvin Anderson and Tim West. Jean-Robert Bellande One of Many Notables Still Surviving Jean-Robert Bellande leads the group of notable names moving on to Day 4. Bellande, who has twice finished in the top 100 of the Main Event, ended Day 3 with 1,126,000. Not far behind him is recent bracelet Joseph Cheong with 1,068,000. This is Cheong's first cash in the WSOP Main Event since 2012. He cashed in three straight years beginning in 2010 with his third-place result. Eric Baldwin (916,000), Antonio Esfandiari (740,000), Chance Kornuth (535,000), Brian Yoon (532,000), Kelly Minkin (456,000), and Gus Hansen (445,000) also advanced to Day 4. Former World Champions Chris Moneymaker, Qui Nguyen, and Johnny Chan each navigated Day 3 successfully and will be back for Day 4. No Chips, No Money, No More Main Event It wasn't all sunshine and rainbows for some of the game's top players. Igor Kurganov, Nick Schulman, Arseniii Karmatckii, legends TJ Cloutier and Scotty Nguyen, as well as Loni Harwood and 2019 $50K PPC champion Phillip Hui were all part of the 1,594 players who busted on Monday. 21 Pennsylvania Players Make it to Day 4 Just 21 Pennsylvania poker players remain heading into Day 4 with the biggest stack belonging to Matthew Sabia. The Bethlehem, PA resident finished with 1,060,000 and has the only seven-figure stack for Keystone State players. Chad Power (829,000), Matt Glantz (817,000), Jake Schindler (652,000), and Kenneth Smaron (632,000) round out the top five. Top 10 Chip Counts Preben Stokkan - 2,184,000 Andrew Brokos - 1,906,000 Ryan Dodge - 1,800,000 Galen Hall - 1,658,000 Cassio Pisapia - 1,640,000 Chris Hunichen - 1,618,000 Pavlo Veksler - 1,594,000 Duytue Duong - 1,576,000 Jacob Daniels - 1,560,000 John Patgorski - 1,524,000
  20. The 2019 World Series of Poker Main Event went from 1,286 players down to 354 on Tuesday Those left are deep in the money and guaranteed $34,845, and it’s Dean Morrone holding the chip lead entering Day 5. Former NFL star Richard Seymour was one of the big stacks to advance. Morrone Leads the Way Morrone is a Canadian player and a qualifier from 888poker. He’s making his first career WSOP cash with his run in this year’s WSOP Main Event and it’s also his largest live tournament score to date as he entered the tournament with just $10,138 in live earnings. Morrone entered Day 4 with 365,000 before he went on to finish with 4.98 million and the lead. Other big stacks in the group behind Morrone on the leaderboard were Lars Bonding (4.04 million), Michael Messick (3.925 million), Warwick Mirzikinian (3.9 million), and Henrik Hecklen (3.862 million) to round out the top five. Morrone’s fellow 888poker qualifier Mihai Manole finished the day with a very healthy 3.781 million. Top 10 Chip Counts Dean Morrone - 4,980,000 Lars Bonding - 4,040,000 Michael Messick - 3,925,000 Warwick Mirzikinian - 3,900,000 Henrik Hecklen - 3,862,000 Mihai Manole - 3,781,000 Robert Heidorn - 3,700,000 Sean Mills - 3,692,000 Christopher Wynkoop - 3,563,000 Andrew Brokos - 3,518,000 Former NFL Star Richard Seymour On the Rush Former NFL star and three-time Super Bowl champion Richard Seymour was among those to advance to Day 5. He spoke with The Fives Poker Podcast at the end of Day 3 about his sixth time playing the WSOP Main Event being a charm and things only got sweeter on Tuesday. Seymour came into the day with 275,000 and quickly got his stack up to 400,000. It wasn’t long before he reached 1 million in chips and then the progression only continued after he was moved to one of the secondary features tables. Seymour bagged up 2.75 million in chips, but he wasn’t the only former NFL player to move on. Eric Stocz, who spent time in the NFL with the Detroit Lions, reached the money in the WSOP Main Event for the second time in his poker career. He’s already outperformed the 402nd-place finish he netted in 2011 that earned him $30,974 and will only be looking for more. Stocz bagged 350,000 for Day 5. Former PocketFives #1 Players Performing Well A handful of former PocketFives #1 players are performing well and have advanced to Day 4 of the 2019 WSOP Main Event. Fabrizio Gonzalez bagged 2.916 million, Chris Hunichen finished with 2.617 million, and Yuri Dzivielevski ended with 1.79 million. Hunichen bagged those chips despite losing one of the biggest pots of the tournament so far. He got involved in a big one with David Guay and Guay flopped a set of tens against Hunichen’s pocket kings. The hand resulted in a full double for Guay and took a dent of about 1.2 million out of Hunichen’s stack. Eight from Pennsylvania Still Alive Pennsylvania online poker has been legalized and the launch date is coming up soon. When sites do go live there will be a handful of players with some extra money to deposit thanks to deep runs in this WSOP Main Event. Eight players from Pennsylvania remain, with Thomas Parkes of Alburtis finishing Day 4 with the most chips at 3.172 million. Pittsburgh’s Chad Power is next with 2.78 million, and then it’s Matthew Sabia (1.81 million), Kenneth Smaron (1.806 million), Edward Pham (1.43 million), Jake Schindler (1.168 million), Donald Dombach (799,000), and Matt Glantz (690,000). Yoon, Esfandiari, Cheong Among Bracelet Winners Remaining In addition to all the names that have been mentioned, Brian Yoon (2.622 million), Antonio Esfandiari (2.583 million), Craig McCorkell (2.5 million), Chris Wallace (1.98 million), and Joseph Cheong (1.958 million) represent some of the WSOP gold bracelet winners still in the field. Yoon and Esfandiari are both three-time gold bracelet winners who have had some deep runs in the WSOP Main Event before. Yoon has finished in the top 60 on three separate occasions (2018, 2016, and 2011), and Esfandiari finished 24th in 2009. McCorkell took 13th in 2014, and Wallace finished 32nd in 2017. We also know very much about Cheong’s third-place finish behind Jonathan Duhamel and John Racener in 2010 that earned him $4.13 million. All Former Main Event Champs Gone Of course, not every player could advance. Three former WSOP Main Event champions began the day, with Johnny Chan, Chris Moneymaker, and Qui Nguyen still in the field, but all three of them busted out on Day 4. Moneymaker finished 687th for $20,200, Chan took 560th for $24,560, and Nguyen went out 455th for $30,780. Nguyen’s bust came when he got the last of his chips in with pocket fives only to lose out to an opponent’s two sixes. With no former WSOP Main Event champions in the field, we will see a brand new winner in 2019. Others to bust on Day 4 were Ricky Guan (362nd - $34,845), Scott Lazar (388th - $34,845), Jean-Robert Bellande (415th - $30,780), Bryan Campanello (435th - $30,780), Josh Arieh (485th - $27,390), Adam Owen (570th - $24,560), and Cliff Josephy (759th - $20,200). Day 5 of the 2019 WSOP Main Event starts at 12 pm PT on Wednesday, July 10 at the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino.
  21. As the launch of Pennsylvania online poker nears, PocketFives takes a look at the top 10 of the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list. The list includes a World Series of Poker Main Event champion, one other WSOP gold bracelet winner, a couple of World Poker Tour winners, and a European Poker Tour champion. The leader falls under none of these categories, though, but he does top the list in a big way with more than $24 million in live tournament earnings. Pennsylvania Poker All-Time Money List Jake Schindler - $24,659,374 Joseph McKeehen - $16,224,026 John Hennigan - $8,472,252 Matt Glantz - $7,110,451 Daniel Ott - $4,726,701 Matt Berkey - $4,152,310 Russell Thomas - $3,770,309 Michael Martin - $3,305,970 Aaron Mermelstein - $3,246,815 Garry Gates - $3,243,129 Jake Schindler Jake Schindler and his career live tournament earnings of more than $24.6 million tops the PA poker all-time money list, and the gap between him and second place is quite large. Schindler is originally from Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, just west of Philadelphia. It’s a suburb of Philadelphia with a population of only few thousand people. Schindler’s largest live tournament score to date comes in at $3.6 million for when he finished second to Christoph Vogelsang in the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl in 2017. He also has scores of $1.192 million from winning the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 High Roller, $2.151 million for winning the 2018 partypoker MILLIONS Grand Final Barcelona €100,000 Super High Roller, and $1.332 million for winning the WPT Five Diamond $100,000 Super High Roller in 2018. Not only does Schindler’s more than $24.6 million put him on top of Pennsylvania’s all-time money list, but it has him ranked in the top 15 of the United States all-time money list and top 25 of the overall all-time money list. Joseph McKeehen Coming in at #2 on Pennsylvania’s all-time money list is 2015 WSOP Main Event champion Joseph McKeehen with more than $16.2 million in live tournament earnings. Of those winnings, $7.683 million came when McKeehen topped a field of 6,420 entries in poker’s most prestigious event, the WSOP Main Event. McKeehen is originally from North Wales, Pennsylvania. It’s a small town in the southeast corner of the Keystone State. McKeehen proved his wasn’t just a one-hit wonder when, in 2017, he won his second WSOP gold bracelet in the $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship, scoring $311,817. McKeehen also has a WSOP Circuit Main Event title to his name. McKeehen’s second biggest score came from the 2016 PCA $100,000 Super High Roller. In that event, he finished second to Bryn Kenney for $1.22 million. John Hennigan One of the most well-known poker players in the world, John Hennigan, comes in at #3 on Pennsylvania’s all-time money list. He has $8.472 million in live tournament earnings. Hennigan has loads of big scores and triumphant victories on his résumé, but it’s the six WSOP gold bracelets and one WPT title that really stick out. Hennigan’s largest career score is his World Poker Tour win, coming in 2007 at the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open when he won $1.606 million. His second biggest score came in 2014 when he won the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship to the tune of $1.517 million. That WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship win came just one year after he finished third in the same event for $686,568. In 2018, Hennigan took second in the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship for $765,837. Hennigan is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Matt Glantz Matt Glantz, from Lafayette Hill, Pennsylvania, comes in at #4 on the list with $7.11 million in live tournament earnings. His biggest live tournament score came from the European Poker Tour London £20,500 High Roller. He won that event for what converted to $862,837. In 2008, Glantz took fourth in the WSOP $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. event for $568,320, and in 2014 he finished fifth in the PCA $100,000 Super High Roller for $445,520. Glantz has a handful of WSOP final tables on record, but to date, he’s yet to win a WSOP gold bracelet. His closest was in 2005 when he took second in the WSOP $3,000 No Limit Hold’em tournament for $364,620. Daniel Ott Almost smack dead in the center of Pennsylvania is Altoona, where Daniel Ott is from. Ott comes in at #5 on PA’s all-time money list with $4.726 million in live tournament earnings. Nearly all of that, $4.7 million worth, comes from a single score. In 2017, Ott made the final table of the WSOP Main Event and finished second to Scott Blumstein for $4.7 million. Elsewhere on Ott’s résumé, you’ll find a bunch of WSOP cashes, all for small amounts, and an MSPT cash, but that’s it. Matt Berkey Originally from Leechburg, Pennsylvania, Matt Berkey is one of poker’s most popular players. He has more than $4.15 million in live tournament earnings, but that could change rather quickly for as big as he plays. Berkey is a regular in some of poker’s priciest tournaments, including the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl, which he took fifth in in 2016 for $1.1 million. That’s Berkey’s only seven-figure score to date, but he has several six-figures cashes and it seems like only a matter of time before he nets another cash of a million dollars or more. Russell Thomas Like Ott, the bulk of Russell Thomas’ career live tournament earnings come from a final table in the WSOP Main Event. Thomas has more than $3.77 million in earnings, which lands him #7 on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list. More than $2.85 million of that comes from a fourth-place finish in the 2012 WSOP Main Event. Thomas is originally from Wallingford, Pennsylvania, which is located in the southeast corner of the state. Michael Martin You won’t see Michael Martin on the poker circuit much these days, but he did well to amass more than $3.3 million in live tournament earnings. Nearly all of Martin’s live tournament cashes come from 2006 to 2010, with one very small cash coming in each of 2013 and 2019. Martin’s biggest score came when he won the European Poker Tour London Main Event in 2008 for more than $1.8 million. Prior to that, earlier in the same year, he banked $666,171 for a fifth-place finish in the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo. Martin is originally from Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania. Aaron Mermelstein Philadelphia’s Aaron Mermelstein is still very much grinding the tournament circuit, and with more than $3.25 million in live earnings, he’s #9 on the Pennsylvania all-time money list. Mermelstein doesn’t have a seven-figure score on record, to date, but he does hold two WPT titles. He won both in 2015, topping the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open for $712,305, his largest score ever, and then winning the WPT Maryland Live! tournament for $250,222. Another big score for Mermelstein came when he won the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown $25,000 High Roller event in 2019 for $618,955. Garry Gates Titusville’s Garry Gates is a newcomer to the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list, thanks to his fourth-place finish in the 2019 WSOP Main Event for $3 million. Gates, a longtime member of the poker industry on both the media and corporate side, now has four WSOP Main Event cashes. Gates’ second-biggest score is a fourth-place finish in the 2012 WSOP Circuit Atlantic City Main Event for $64,530. Gates’ hometown of Titusville is home to notable football player and coach, John Heisman.
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