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  1. With the tournament changes at 888poker in full swing over, the company has pulled back the curtain to show how and why all of this change came about within one of the world's longest running online poker rooms. Building on the introduction of the Made to Play platform in October 2020, the latest iteration of the 888poker multi-table tournament offering provides another important step towards giving more fun poker experiences to the player base. The company asked their ambassadors to reach out to their followers on social media to find out what gets their blood pumping and the type of experience they’re after when playing online tournaments. "We listen to our players and following their feedback we understand that players want a variety of shorter tournaments, with less re-entries and more players in the money. We want to make it simple and easier for poker players to find a tournament that suits them and make our MTTs affordable and more enjoyable," said an 888poker spokesperson. Trying to accommodate the wants and wishes of all player types is no easy feat to pull off, it’s often difficult to make concessions for one party without upsetting another. "Different players wanted different changes. Players who have kids or a day job the next day wanted shorter tournaments. Regulars and grinders wanted higher guarantees, good structures and higher buy-ins. Some players were asking for more PKO’s. We did our best to offer something for all our players," the spokesperson said. And the way poker sites treat recreational players has increasingly been placed under the microscope of scrutiny as of late. Agreeing with Chris Moorman's breakdown of his favorite changes, more casual players will now less likely have to harbour the usual anxieties they face when logging into their account. "Recreational players will have more tournaments that don’t take so long. Less re-entries (or none in the case of ‘The Classic’) will mean grinders with seemingly unlimited bankrolls will have less of an advantage. A higher percentage of players reaching the money and bigger min cashes means more players will get a more gratifying experience, more often. PKO’s are also popular among recreational players, and now they can enjoy more of them. "Other sites are offering tournaments with very deep structures, long late registration and unlimited re-entries, whereas we now offer many tournaments that are more recreational-player friendly. In addition, we have more satellites and freerolls per tournament than our competitors which is advantageous for both recs and grinders alike. On top of this, our new platform and promotions make our MTT’s even more attractive and fun to play.” To mark the occasion and to celebrate the launch of the new tournament schedule, over $200,000 in tickets and seats to the new tournaments as part of a massive giveaway. "This fun and generous promotion is running until April 2, and players can win tickets via the Winner Spinner, Gift Drops and also through the daily 'no-ticket needed' freerolls." Poker players that are unlucky enough to miss out prize giveaways shouldn't fret too much as there are plenty of ways to enter higher buy-in MTT's without breaking the bank. It's obvious that there's an anticipation to see how players react to the latest tournaments modifications, but there is a real buzz in the air to see how much more enjoyable it is for players to navigate the platform. "It’s fun to hear players’ feedback and adjust our schedules and tournaments accordingly. If we had to choose just one change, we are most excited about, it would probably be having a very clear and organized lobby. It’s so easy now for players to become familiar with 888poker tournament offering and identify which tournament is most suitable," the spokesperson said. "They’ll know that The Voyage has a deep structure, The Dash will be much quicker, The Big Shot will have the highest prizepools and so on."
  2. Whether watching some of the biggest names in poker at the World Series of Poker, Poker After Dark or any other poker-related show, recreational poker players from all over the world have had the same thought on at least one occasion – "I’d love to test myself and battle against the pros." If this resonates and hits home, then take note that 888poker is giving all home game heroes and casual poker room players the chance to do just that – battle against the pros. It has never been easier to do so either, there’s no need to navigate a collection of satellite tournaments to get this opportunity. All you need to do is convince the 888poker team why you should be the one to play against the 888poker Ambassadors. Three players will be selected to sit in an exclusive Six Max Sit & Go and battle it out against Dominik Nitsche, Sofia Lövgren, and Vivian Saliba. The winner will walk away with a $1,400 first-place prize while second place will add $600 to their bankroll. Those that want to test their poker skills against their poker idols, go to the 888poker Facebook page and leave a comment. Entries need to be submitted no later than February 16 at 11 pm GMT to be considered. All selected players will be notified within three days and those winners will have a further 72 hours to confirm their seat at the table. This competition also gives poker players another item that can be ticked off their poker bucket list – playing a live-streamed event. The tournament is being aired live on February 22 with World Series of Poker sideline reporter and current 888poker ambassador Kara Scott calling the action alongside veteran poker commentator David Tuchman. Meet The 888poker Pros The selected players will be up against tough opposition, competing against the trio of 888poker pros Vivian Saliba, Sofia Lövgren, and Dominik Nitsche. With almost $20 million in winnings between the three pros, the selected players will need to pull out all the stops to prove they’ve got what it takes to swim with the sharks. Dominik Nitsche With 4 WSOP bracelets, a World Poker Tour title, and over $18 million in tournament earnings, taking the scalp of the German national is definitely a story that would go down a storm at the local card room or home game. This of course will be no mean feat to pull off but running the right bluff or making the most hero of calls could be all it takes to take this poker titan down. Vivian Saliba Brazilian-born Saliba mainly cuts her cloth on the PLO streets but is no stranger or slouch to No Limit Hold’em either and can be often found streaming on Twitch under the username ViviSaliba. With 14 WSOP cashes and over $500k in prize money won, navigating past this pro will be harder than avoiding an Ace on the flop when holding pocket kings. Sofia Lövgren The third and final 888poker ambassador taking a seat at the table is Sofia Lövgren. One of the notable highlights in her poker career is a 12th place finish in the 2016 WSOP $1,500 No Limit Hold’em Millionaire Maker for $75,000. With over 7,000 entries into that tournament, Lövgren shows she’s got the patience and composure to wait for her spot and punish anyone who slips up. What's At Stake The prizes up for grabs in this golden opportunity are nothing to roll your eyes at either, the winner of the Ambassadors Home Game will take home a tidy four-figure score of $1,400 with the runner-up winning a bankroll boosting $600. Also, of note, while players may have plenty of reasons they think they should be considered - there's a limit of only one submission per player.
  3. It’s no secret that, for many, Halloween will be celebrated differently this year, with some of the world still in some form of lockdown as countries look to overcome coronavirus. Whether the thought of no trick-or-treaters brings you a smile or a tear, we can all say that we have at least one fond memory of the ‘spookiest’ day of the year. And after speaking with 888poker ambassadors Kara Scott and Sofia Lövgren, it is abundantly clear that they too look forward to the 31st of October. For Scott, growing up in Northern Canada meant that by October 31st, it was already way below zero and usually there was a lot of snow to deal with. That didn't stop any trick or treating, but it did mean having to wear a big parka and snow boots over the costume her mother had crafted for her. Whether Scott wanted to turn into a pumpkin, dragon, or witch, it seemed that her mother could turn a simple garbage bag with other everyday household items into whatever monster or ghoul her daughter desired. One thing that always fascinated Scott was the Halloween myth of finding razor blades in apples. For example, despite knowing everyone in their 600 person hometown, she, along with her brother and sister, recognized it was a longshot but that still wouldn’t deter Kara and her siblings looking for hours on end. “I loved Halloween as a kid. Dressing up and being silly has always been something that I enjoy," Scott said. “I love dress-up parties and festivals where everyone wears wild costumes and there were a few years while I lived in Brighton, UK that I got to do these things with awesome like-minded people. I threw a Star Trek party once, for someone named Kirk who had just become an airline Captain." “I made everyone dress up according to the theme and revelled in the whole thing as a huge Trekkie, I even have my own tricorder!” But having lived in Europe for the last 20 years, the face of 888poker has missed out on indulging in Halloween festivities with her most recent favourite ghoulish memory coming nearly a decade ago. “When I was in Santa Barbara about nine years ago was the last time I dressed up properly," she said. “I was Ramona Flowers from Scott Pilgrim and it was the perfect costume. Combat boots instead of high heels, a jacket to stay warm and a cool wig. Top marks for that one.” And Kara’s fondness of Halloween is now being passed onto her young child now, with collecting costumes already it seems that Scott junior will be carrying on her mom’s fondness of the holiday. Sofia Lövgren’s early Halloween memories, like her colleague, include getting up to mischief with her family. “My brothers, sister, parents and I would buy pumpkins which we then made art with. We bought as big and heavy pumpkin as we could to carry home," Lovgren said. “We emptied the pumpkin filling and then I loved the tradition of carving evil faces onto them and then put them in our garden with candles inside.” But the Halloween highlight of Swedish born Lövgren’s childhood was always the trick-or-treating, (mainly the treating side of things) and experimenting with Halloween looks, which usually resulted in her favourite ghoulish get-up of a half skeleton face with the other half all glammed up. And Lövgren’s enthusiasm for Halloween continued into her adult life thanks to her parent's love of traditions, no matter the holiday. “I grew up with lots of decorations around me on big holidays as my mom and dad love traditions. I also try to carry on the traditions as a grown-up, especially during Christmas and Easter but also Halloween. Even today we all still love to cut Halloween pumpkins with candles.” But now more likely to been seen watching her favourite scary movie The Ring, rather than knocking on neighbours’ doors in the hopes of a waterfall of candy being dumped into her jack-o-lantern. In recent years, Lövgren usually finds herself around the poker table this time of year which has made for some more recent fond memories. “I was in Malta for the Battle of Malta 2015 which took place during Halloween. This event is always a blast and we decided to get Halloween face paintings and I made my favourite; one half evil face and half beauty face. “I actually hit the table with my face painting which was fun and then in the evening we also went out to party which turned out to be really great.”
  4. Well-known poker media presenter and player Kara Scott (pictured) has announced that she will part ways with sponsor PartyPoker at the end of the year. On her blog at CardRunners, the 37-year-old Alberta native explained her reasoning behind the decision: "PartyPoker has gone through many changes and unfortunately as their focus shifted, there were fewer and fewer TV projects," she said. "As those shows disappeared, so did one of my favorite parts of the job and now my association with Party is ending." Before being brought on as a PartyPoker ambassador in 2010, she had already racked up several years of experience working in the UK media. After landing a gig as the presenter of a martial arts show, Scott found her niche in the gambling industry. In 2005, she hosted the World Backgammon Championships and went on to present the World Series of Backgammon in 2006. It was around that time that she made the jump to poker, hosting a variety of shows and events including "Poker Night Live," the European Poker Tour, and GSN's "High Stakes Poker." She might be most well-known, though, for her role as a sideline reporter on ESPN's World Series of Poker Main Event coverage. In her blog post, the 37-year-old looked back fondly on her time as ambassador for the brand. "The last five years with Party were a real learning experience for me," she said. "I made incredible memories and will always be glad for the time I spent there." While she will no longer be "wearing an orange patch," she assured fans that she isn't leaving poker and plans to appear in future television projects. "You'll still be seeing me as a sideline reporter on your TVs or sitting with a chip stack of my own in tournaments around the world," she wrote. A solid poker player in her own right, Scott has made a name for herself at the tables, boasting more than $630,000 in live cashes according to the Global Poker Index. Her biggest win came in the 2009 Irish Open, when she took €312,600 for her second place finish. In 2008, she finished 104th in the WSOP Main Event and was the only woman to cash in both the 2008 and 2009 Main Events. Scott's announcement comes at the end of a year that saw a host of poker players quietly dropped by their sponsors or decide to leave voluntarily. In August, three well-known Latin American pros lost marketing deals at PokerStars, including two-time bracelet winner Humberto Brenes (pictured). The next month, Joe Cada and Marcel Luske got the axe, followed by high-stakes legends Gus Hansen and Viktor Blom losing their deals with Full Tilt Poker. Last month, columnist and poker presenter Vicky Coren announced that she would split from PokerStars due to the company's decision to offer casino style games. "I cannot professionally and publicly endorse it, even passably by silence with my name still over the shop," she said at the time. "Poker is the game I love, poker is what I signed up to promote." In a similar fashion, Scott ended her own post by reaffirming her love of the game and revealed her excitement to pursue new projects. "It's been way too long since I jumped into the unknown and I'm both relieved and exhilarated to be doing it again," she said. "I always do my best dancing when I'm not exactly sure where to put my feet." Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  5. [caption width="660"] Kara Scott is the newest brand ambassador for 888[/caption] Canadian poker player and media presenter Kara Scott has inked a deal with 888 Poker to become one of the iGaming giant's brand ambassadors. "I've long been impressed with 888 Poker's focus on providing a great player experience," she said. "I'm a big believer in just how much fun poker can be and adore being involved with the recreational side of the game as well as the more serious side." Scott is no stranger to the limelight and has been involved in poker media for more than 15 years. She is well-known for commentating during the European Poker Tour along with hosting the award-winning program "Poker Night Live" and GSN's "High Stakes Poker." She has also been a staple of reporting for ESPN during the annual World Series of Poker. While she prefers to call herself a "poker enthusiast" instead of a "poker pro," Scott is no slouch at the tables. The 40-year-old made a standout appearance in the 2008 WSOP Main Event, where she finished in the top 2% of nearly 7,000 players for $41,816. The next year, she made a deep run in the Main Event again, becoming the only woman to cash in both the 2008 and 2009 WSOP Main Events. "Joining the 888 Poker team is a fantastic milestone for my career and I feel honored to be representing such a key player in the poker industry," she said. "I'm also really excited to be part of their impressive team of ambassadors. I am looking forward to a bright and successful future with 888 Poker." In her new role at 888, Scott joins a sponsored roster consisting of Dominik Nitsche, Jackie Glazier, Sofia Lovgren, Bruno Politano, Bruno Kawauti, and Nicolau Villa-Lobos. The addition of Scott to 888 comes during a marketing campaign the site calls "Live the Game." With renewed focus on casual players, the company has released television ads depicting a group of friends one-upping each other as they would if they were betting in a poker game. As part of the promo, 888 promises to give away a guaranteed $1 million to players who complete a series of special tournaments on the site. Itai Pazner, Senior Vice President and Head of B2C at 888, welcomed the poker presenter to the family. "All of us here at 888 Poker are thrilled that Kara has joined our team," he said. "Her achievements and outlook on the game and the industry are exactly what 888 Poker stands for and we look forward to having her on board." 888 is celebrating its new hire with a $3,000 Welcome Kara Scott Freeroll, which runs on February 29 at 19:05 GMT. In addition, players will have the chance to win a $100 bounty if they knock out Kara herself. The Canada native will also make live appearances, including an event on March 3 that will take place at the Aspers Casino in London.
  6. Two weeks ago, inside the packed-to-capacity ballroom of a posh Beverly Hills hotel, a small-town Canadian girl stood in front of some of poker’s best players and most important movers and shakers and simply put, owned the room. As Kara Scott looked out at the crowd at the 2016 American Poker Awards, where she was serving as host, she can be forgiven if she took a moment or two to reflect on just far she’d come to get to this point. Literally. And figuratively. Scott was born and raised and Northern Alberta, but it hasn’t been home for some time now. She’s lived in London and Rome before moving to Ljubljana, Slovenia in early 2016. It made for 30-plus hours of travel to get to Los Angeles to oversee the third annual APAs. While her new hometown might be tough to spell, Scott feels right at home living in the city of just 280,000 with her husband, Giovanni Rizzo. “It’s got two l’s and two j’s in it, so it’s a little difficult, but it’s probably the best place I think I’ve ever lived in my life, and I love it unreservedly,” said Scott. ”For a Canadian kid, it’s the best place to live if you’re going to be outside of Canada.” [caption width="400" align="alignright"] Kara Scott has been an 888poker ambassador since 2016.[/caption] Having lived in cultural centers like London and Rome already, Scott is thrilled with the change of and has fallen in love with some of the things that make Slovenia so unique. “They just celebrated 25 years of independence from the former Yugoslavia, so as a country in itself, it’s really quite young,” said Scott. “You see a lot of all wooden bicycles, dudes with really ironic, but not ironic beards, and there’s lot of artists, and their music is super important.“ The Slovenian sense of culture comes from the government showing a willingness to let people live and let live, and that attitude impacts the people of Ljubljana in a positive way and that’s a big reason why Scott has come to love it. “They have these laws where buskers are really celebrated, and as long as they don’t do anything like get drunk or act disorderly while they’re performing, they can stay in Slovenia and make money, so there’s always music everywhere,” said Scott. “The people are just – I don’t know – there’s this real sense of freedom and optimism.” While the lifestyle it provides is something Scott really enjoys, at almost 6,000 miles from poker’s epicenter of Las Vegas, it’s not exactly ideal for somebody who spends a good amount of time working in Sin City or Los Angeles. Scott, an 888poker ambassador, works as the sideline reporter for ESPN’s coverage of the World Series of Poker Main Event. In 2015, she also worked as the commentator for the Super High Roller Bowl and Celebrity Shootout – work that ultimately her win an American Poker Award. Last summer she returned to Super High Roller Bowl, this time to hold down the anchor desk of the live broadcast alongside Jesse Sylvia. “I loved working on the Super High Roller Bowl and Celebrity Shootout for PokerCentral It was amazing, but we did all of the voice stuff in post-(production). While they would edit three or four shows at a time, I would fly in to LA from Slovenia to do a voiceover for a couple of days, and then fly home and then a couple of weeks later fly back up,” said Scott. “It was a hell of a commute, but it was totally worth it." Standing in front of a room full of people is exactly where Scott thought her career was going to when she was younger, but it had nothing to do with Beverly Hills, ballrooms or award shows, but rather reading, writing and arithmetic. Scott graduated from the University of Calgary with a degree in Education and Linguistics and immediately took off to England to begin her career as a teacher. Getting work wasn’t an issue for Scott at first, but finding something that she found fulfilling was. In between teaching gigs she found herself picking up other work in a totally different field – television. “I was a teacher in London, and I’d given that up a couple of times and gone back to it a couple of times. I’d done producing work in TV and film over there and I loved it,” said Scott. She eventually found herself in front of the camera, covering backgammon in 2005, but if you ask her, she thought her first attempted foray into broadcasting only guaranteed that she’d be a teacher forever. [caption width="640"] Working with Dominik Nitsche for 888poker, Scott ended up being on the other end of the questions[/caption] “I remember going for the audition. I’d read about it, and I didn’t know anything about backgammon, but I played a lot of games, so I was like ‘I’m going to go, I’m going to do my best, and you know what? If I don’t get this job, I give up, because I have a lot of debt, and I’m about to kind of lose my apartment, and this is really hard, and I’m just going to have to go back to teaching',” said Scott. Knowing nothing about the game probably didn’t help matters much, but Scott left the audition believing she had failed miserably, so much so that as soon as it was done, she found herself in a pub, trying to console herself. “I was convinced that I had botched it so badly, so I went outside to the bar across the street and I ordered a glass of whiskey, and I was shaking because I was so upset with myself and then I chipped the inside of my tooth with the glass,” said Scott. “I just burst into tears because I was like ‘gah, everything’s terrible’.” Two weeks later her phone rang and the producers told her she’d gotten the job. Scott was stunned. Not everything was terrible. “They were like, ‘It was a great interview. It was our favorite interview. You were so good,’ and I was like, Really?” said Scott. Next thing she knew, Scott was hosting High Stakes Backgammon and eventually the World Series of Backgammon for British television. Her work there eventually lead her to working in poker, including a stint on Poker Night Live, a British show. “I went through a phase of probably ten years of taking everything that was offered because I was like ‘I have to keep working, Don't know when it’s going to dry up.’,” said Scott. Along the way she’s been on-air talent for a myriad of productions including Sky Poker, the Super High Roller Bowl, the European Poker Tour, High Stakes Poker and probably most importantly, ESPN’s coverage of the WSOP. While the mid-summer work for ESPN gives Scott the chance to cover poker’s biggest event from Day 1, those episodes are taped and prepared after weeks of editing. Covering the WSOP Main Event final table means working live in front of potentially millions of viewers at home. At first, Scott dreaded the thought of being on live TV and not being perfect. Even with years of TV experience now under her belt, Scott got the butterflies even thinking about the idea. “I was really scared. I was excited though. I started to get a little bit of stage fright at that point, and so that scared me,” said Scott. “They used to call me ‘One Take Kara’ and it was important to me to maintain that, and I’d start to make mistakes because I was putting too much pressure on myself and my mind would go blank.” Scott worked with a friend of hers from London that helps actors deal with stage fright and it worked. She’s gone from worrying about being on live TV to enjoying it more than anything else she does. “The World Series in October or November really is my favorite because doing it live is amazing and you just have no room for error. I guess I don’t have time to over-think it. Whereas if I know it’s being recorded, and can do another take if I want to, then I have a tendency to sabotage myself a little bit and get it wrong,” said Scott. The November Nine broadcasts also gave Scott the chance to do something a little bit different from the sideline reporting. Like any poker tournament, the WSOP Main Event final table has extended breaks between each level. Scott is tasked with keeping the audience’s attention even when there were no cards being dealt by reviewing the previous level and going over hands with top pros like Daniel Negreanu and Phil Hellmuth. “I think the highlight for me is probably the first time I sat behind the anchor desk for the ESPN show. That was amazing. I was really proud that they kind of trusted me to carry a 10 or 15-minute segment. It felt like doing something like SportsCenter,” said Scott. ”I love my job being a sideline reporter as well, I do, but that just kind of felt like, oh, there is somewhere for me to continue moving and it’s nice to know that I had somewhere to expand into.“ [caption width="640"] Scott won a 2015 American Poker Award for her work as play-by-play commentator for the Super High Roller Bowl[/caption] She’s since expanded her roles again. In 2015, Scott became the first woman to do play-by-play for a North American poker broadcast when she called the action for the Super High Roller Bowl on NBC Sports Network. Scott sees it as a natural extension of everything she’s done in her career to date – even the stuff from before the TV work. “I love the play-by-play. I’ve never been the analyst, because I don’t want to be the analyst. That’s not my role. I’m not a poker expert. I’m a broadcaster who plays poker and loves the game and is around it all the time, so I can talk about in a certain way,” said Scott. “It’s part of the teacher in me. I like to make sure people are where they’re supposed to be, doing what they’re supposed to be, keeping them on track. It feels like a very natural role to me. I love that.” While she humbly shrugs off the “trailblazer” status of that role, Scott believes that the world of poker is changing – albeit slowly – to be more accepting and inviting of female players and she looks to Twitter and Facebook as a key part of that transition. “I think the advent of social media means that we’re hearing people say thing that they were always saying, but now it’s louder, because we can all read them. They’re there, which is both good and bad, but it’s kind of nice to have a voice for people who are in the minority,” said Scott. While females are vastly outnumbered on the live the tournament scene, Scott sees a day coming where that number is closer to the actual population representation, but don’t count on it happening overnight. “I’ve always thought that it was going to take a little while, like a slow build to that, because bringing women into the game was great, but they come in and they’re still amateurs when they’re playing the game, so it wasn’t going to be this boom of all of a sudden we’re winning all the bracelets and it’s going to be great,” said Scott. Looking back at the women who have come before her in poker, Scott marvels at how they’ve managed to constantly support each other, even if professional and personal differences exist and the struggle hasn’t always been easy. Sitting in the audience at the Women in Poker Hall of Fame ceremony last summer gave her some perspective. “I know Linda Johnson and Jan Fisher pretty well, and I adore them, but I don’t know a lot of the other women from the Women in Poker Hall of Fame and seeing how close they all are, it made sense,” said Scott. “I kind of want to see some of that for my generation, or even the women who are younger than me, I want to see that we kind of reach out and support each other. I think we do in a way that I didn’t see five years ago.” Looking at the generation of women playing the game today, Scott has no difficulty pointing to some she admires. “There are so many really interesting women that I really adore. Danielle Andersen, I’ve been friends with here for a few years now and we always meet up and have breakfast or lunch,” said Scott. “I am just starting to be friends with Julie Anna Cornelius, who I think is lovely. Jamie Kerstetter, because we’ve worked together (at partypoker), I always just had a real respect for her game and her commentary.” Looking ahead at what projects or challenges she wants to tackle next, Scott points to one day doing a show with an all-female play-by-play and commentary team, and she’s already got her partner in mind. “I want to do a show with Maria Ho as the analyst, and me leading it. I think that would be awesome,” said Scott. “I think we’re at the time where that’s okay. I don't think people would find it so weird, especially because she’s such a highly regarded player, and she proved it over and over again that this is who she is.” Scott has also proven herself multiple times in her career and no longer worries about having to go back to teaching geography. She’s reached a point in her career where she’s able to pick and choose what jobs she wants to work or projects she wants to be involved in. “My dad always used to tell me, and he told me this when I first started, when I was doing nothing but standing in the background of a mobile phone commercial, a 12-hour day of walking by while my shoulder showed in the shot, and he was like ‘One day you’re going to have to start turning down good jobs, because you’ve got other good jobs'.” “And it happened,” said Scott.
  7. [caption width="640"] Both Kara Scott and 888poker will be back as part of the Super High Roller Bowl this year.[/caption] Fifty-six of the world’s best high stakes poker players will make their way to the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl at the end of May, and now the event has a presenting sponsor. And it’s a familiar face. For the second year in a row, 888poker has been named the presenting sponsor for the $300,000 buy-in event. Now in its third year, the SHRB has become one of the most highly anticipated tournaments on the poker calendar with a worldwide audience, one of the factors that got 888poker executives excited about the event. “Poker Central’s productions offer high-level poker action with world-class poker players. The Super High Roller Bowl is an extremely prestigious event which is followed by a wide and varied audience of poker fans around the world,” said Itai Pazner, Senior Vice President of B2C, 888holdings. Poker PROductions will produce the event for NBC Sports Network, with final details on the broadcast dates and times expected to be announced in the coming weeks. 888poker ambassador Kara Scott will also be back in her role as host for the broadcast. RELATED: KARA SCOTT: FROM A SMALL CANADIAN TOWN TO POKER'S BIGGEST STAGES The event runs May 28 – June 1 at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. All but one seat in the SHRB has been confirmed. Reigning champion Rainer Kempe, 2016 runner-up Fedor Holz, Jason Mercier, Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Brian Rast, Erik Seidel, Doug Polk and 888poker ambassador Dominik Nitsche will be part of the field. “The Super High Roller Bowl is truly one of the highest quality events out there. Poker Central does a lot of great things for poker and I am thrilled to see 888poker working closely with them,“ said Nitsche. “The Super High Roller Bowl is a unique event you cannot miss, and I am definitely excited to be kicking off the summer with this tournament.” While most poker fans will have to settle for tuning in in from home, 888poker is sending one player to Las Vegas to watch the action live. The package includes travel, accommodation as well as the opportunity to meet some of the players in the Super High Roller Bowl. If you don’t have an 888poker account yet, sign up through this link and you’ll get a 100% bonus up to a maximum of $700. You'll also get a free $10 on top of the first $10 you deposit available to you right away!
  8. [caption width="640"] 888poker team pros Bruno Politano, Chris Moorman, and Bruno Kawauti are excited for the release of the Live Festival and Local Event schedule. (888 photo).[/caption] 888poker’s 2017 Live Festival season kicked off at King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic and recently announced a full series in Barcelona in May. 888live is pleased to reveal seven more stops to add to their calendar. In total, there are three 888live Festivals on the remaining schedule along with six Local Events. The 888live Festival Series and Local Events will be making four separate stops to London. The Live Festival is on the schedule for October with Local Events on tap for May, July, and November. 888poker team pro and former PocketFives #1 player Chris 'moorman1' Moorman is planning on being in attendance in London and excited to take down a title in his native country. “I plan on winning the event in London as I've always wanted to win an event in my home city and getting so close in the high roller last year has wet my appetite to do this even further,” said Moorman. Fellow 888poker ambassador Kara Scott is overjoyed at the prospect of winning a title so close to home. “I'm calling London! I'm going to use Barcelona as my warm up (and absolutely try to take it down). But London feels like home turf to me, and I've done well there in the other two 888poker main events I've played, even coming 3rd in the first I played with an 888poker patch on, so it feels like mine.” Along with the previously announced 888live Festival stop in Barcelona, the other Live Festival stop on the calendar is in August in Sao Paolo, Brazil; the home of many 888poker team members. One of those Brazilian players, 2014 November Niner Bruno Politano, loves playing 888Live events and will be at the stops in Barcelona and Brazil. “The atmosphere in 888Live events is amazing. You can feel that the company is putting the players first, giving them the chance to play with our amazing 888 team. I absolutely love the 888Live events in Brazil and will love even more the upcoming [series] in Barcelona!” The other Local Events on tap for later this year are Dublin in June, Madrid in September, and Vienna in December to close out the campaign. The official locations and schedule of events will be released closer to the timing of each series. Both returning and new players should be ready for an experience unlike any other when the next 888poker arrives at a city near them. Live poker has come a long way and someone who has been around the game as long as Scott is floored by what 888poker offers at their events. “When players approach me to share their stories of how fun an event was or to tell me how they feel taken care of by 888poker, it always makes me feel very proud to be part of the 888poker team. Since the inception of 888Live, the players have come first at 888poker, as they consistently offer affordable buy-ins alongside impressive guaranteed prize pools.” If you don’t have an 888poker account yet, sign up through this link and you’ll get a 100% bonus up to a maximum of $700. You'll also get a free $10 on top of the first $10 you deposit available to you right away!
  9. [caption width="640"] 888poker returns to London for the 888Live London Poker Festival[/caption] Mark your calendars and book your flights as 888Live returns to the city of London from October 5-16. Hosted once again by one of the best casinos in London, Aspers Casino in Westfield, Stratford City, 888Live in London promises perpetual poker action and over $800,000 in guaranteed prize pools spread out over 10 events. With a wide variety of buy-ins and events, there are plenty of opportunities for players to get into the action. The 12-day festival is highlighted by a number of huge-value events. The kickoff event, the '888Live London Festival Opening Event', comes with a modest £220 buy-in that carries with it a massive £120,000 guarantee. The 888Live London Festival Main Event does one better offering £400,000 in guaranteed cash for its £1,100 entry fee. The festival also contains a High Roller, Pot Limit Omaha and Ladies Tournament. Also, live versions of 888poker's popular online tournaments The Swordfish, The Whale and Lightning Six Max will run. 888poker ambassadors will be out in full force to play host and compete on the felt. Poker personality Kara Scott, Swedish superstar Sofia Lovgren, three-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Dominik Nitsche and the most successful online poker player in history, Chris '888Moorman' Moorman will all be on hand, and, often times, in hands. To keep the action moving at a quick pace, 888poker is debuting their new shot clock. No more staring into oblivion while an opponent tanks incessantly for minutes at a time. The shot clock keeps the game humming right along, allowing players 30 seconds at a time to make decisions, ensuring a faster-paced game and more hands per hour. When the clock expires, so does your hand. But it's not as if there's no mercy when it comes to the shot clock as sometimes there are decisions need a little extra consideration. Players are allotted a number of time extensions, which can be used when faced with a tougher spot, like when you are unexpectedly check-raised on a river you thought you just bet for value. As is usual with 888poker, there are plenty of ways for you to qualify for the biggest events of the series. Of course, players are welcome to simply buy their tickets directly but if you are one who wants to take a shot at, as UK's William Kassouf would say, getting “in for the min to get the max” there are plenty of satellite options. Online satellites start for as little as 1¢ and you can work your way up and step into qualifiers for both the 888Live Opening Event as well as the £1,100 Main Event. Players can also head to the Aspers Caniso to participate in the live satellites. For the Opening Event players have nine shots costing only £30 and the Main Event has another seven opportunities to claim a seat for as little as £50. The 888Live London Festival is set to be one of their biggest yet with fast-paced poker action, plenty of opportunities to qualify and $800,000 up for grabs. For more information on 888Live London Festival, visit 888poker live events. 888Live London Festival Schedule of Events Start DateStart TimeTournamentBuy-InGuaranteed Prize Pool 10/215:00Satellite to Opening Event 1£303 seats 10/219:00Satellite to Opening Event 2£306 seats 10/315:00Satellite to Opening Event 3£303 seats 10/319:00Satellite to Opening Event 4£306 seats 10/415:00Satellite to Opening Event 5£303 seats 10/419:00Satellite to Opening Event 6£306 seats 10/515:00Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1£306 seats 10/518:00888Live London Opening Event 1A£220£120,000 10/615:00Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1£306 seats 10/618:00888Live London Opening Event 1B£220£120,000 10/712:00Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1£306 seats 10/714:00888Live London Opening Event 1C£220£120,000 10/718:00888Live London Opening Event 1D£220£120,000 10/813:00888 Live London Opening Event Final£220£120,000 10/818:00The Hurricane£50£5,000 10/914:00Satellite to Main Event£502 seats 10/918:00The Swordfish£60£3,000 10/920:00Satellite to Main Event£503 seats 10/1014:00Satellite to Main Event£503 seats 10/1018:00The Turbo Deepstack£80£8,888 10/1020:00Satellite to Main Event£503 seats 10/1114:00Satellite to Main Event£502 seats 10/1118:00The Lightning 8-Max£60- 10/1120:00Satellite to Main Event Day 1£503 seats 10/1119:00High Roller Day 1£2,200£50,000 10/1215:00Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1£1005 seats 10/1217:00High Roller Final Day£2,200£50,000 10/1218:00888Live London Main Event 1A£1,100£400,000 10/1315:00Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1£1005 seats 10/1318:00888Live London Main Event 1B£1,100£400,000 10/1413:00Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1£1005 seats 10/1415:00888Live London Main Event 1C£1,100£400,000 10/1420:00Omaha Pot Limit£150- 10/1514:00888Live London Main Event Day 2£1,100£400,000 10/1517:00The Whale£110£10,000 10/1519:00Ladies Event£55£10,000 10/1614:00888Live London Main Event Final-£400,000
  10. 888poker LIVE is not going to let 2019 go without one final end-of-the-year poker festival. The 888poker party continues as the live tour returns to the UK from November 21 - December 2 offering players a nine-event tournament schedule that culminates in a £500,000 guaranteed Main Event. The final stop of the year is at London’s Aspers Casino in Stratford, London and 888poker is pulling out all the stops to bring recreational players and pros together to an event that is being billed as 888’s biggest live event of the year. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] Nearly the entire roster of 888poker ambassadors has agreed to make the trip including World Series of Poker Main Event champion Martin Jacobson, Kara Scott, Vivian Saliba, Sofia Lovgren, Ana Marquez, former #1-ranked PocketFivers Chris ‘moorman1’ Moorman and the newest ambassador, Russia’s Daria Feshenko. The schedule is ideal for players looking to give their bankroll a boost without putting it all on the line. There are nine events with buy-ins that range from as little as £60 up to the £2,200 High Roller. The action kicks off with 888LIVE’s popular Opening Event, a £440 buy-in tournament with a £100,000 guarantee that gives recreational players both a deep 30K starting stack and 30-minute levels. In May, the same tournament was run and it attracted 207 runners which generated a prize pool of over £129,480. The UK’s Paul Noble took home the trophy and a career-high cash of £26,530. Of course, all eyes will be looking ahead to the £1,100 buy-in £500,000 guaranteed Main Event. The tournament features a 30K starting stack, 40-minutes Day 1 levels, 60-minute Day 2 levels and the promise of a high five-figure first-place prize. There’s five starting flights and players who end up on the wrong side of variance can re-enter at will. If that weren't enough at stake, the winner of the 888LIVE London Festival Main Event will also take home a package to the 2020 World Series of Poker Main Event in Las Vegas. For those hoping to take a shot in the Main Event but perhaps don’t have the current bankroll to buy in directly, there are plenty of satellite options available on 888poker. In fact, the 888poker satellite tree starts for as little as $0.01. Players can grind their way up to, or buy-directly into, the $109 buy-in 888poker LIVE London Festival Main Event Qualifier where winners take away a $2,200 package to the festival that includes a seat to the Main Event as well as $450 for three nights accommodation and $350 of pocket money to help you get to the event. In addition to the marquee events of the festival, players can dive into live versions of their favorite online tournaments including The Hurricane, The Swordfish and The Whale. Take a look at the entire schedule below. 888poker LIVE London Schedule DATE EVENT BUY-IN GTD 11-21 Opening Event Day 1A £440 £100,000 11-22 Opening Event Day 1B £440 £100,000 11-23 Opening Event Day 1C £440 £100,000 11-23 Opening Event Day 1D Turbo £440 £100,000 11-24 Opening Event Final Day - - 11-24 The Hurricane £110 £5,000 11-25 The Swordfish £80 £3,000 11-26 The Turbo Deepstack £60 £3,000 11-27 High Roller Day 1 £2,200 £50,000 11-28 High Roller Final Day - - 11-28 Main Event Day 1A £1,100 £500,000 11-29 Main Event Day 1B £1,100 £500,000 11-29 Main Event Day 1C £1,100 £500,000 11-30 Main Event Day 1D £1,100 £500,000 11-30 Main Event Day 1E Turbo £1,100 £500,000 11-30 Pot Limit Omaha £125 - 12-01 Main Event Day 2 - - 12-01 The Whale £150 £5,000 12-01 Ladies Event £100 - 12-02 Main Event Final Day 2 - -  
  11. 888poker LIVE is getting ready to go on the road and to kick off their 2020 live tour with their first-ever stop in Madrid, Spain. The 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival will take place from January 23 - February 3 at Casino Gran Via and includes 12 tournaments, a host of live satellites, and €1,000,000 in total guaranteed prize pools. First-Ever Madrid Main Event While there are many events to get excited about during 888poker’s festival in Madrid, undoubtedly players will be gearing up to make a deep run in the €888 buy-in Main Event. Not only does the Main Event provide players a chance to become an 888poker champion, but with its €800,000 guarantee, the first-place payday will be one of the largest 888poker LIVE prizes of the entire year. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="888poker"][ptable zone="PokerStars NJ"] In order to make sure they hit that guarantee, 888poker is doing everything they can to help players participate. The Main Event itself has four starting flights, all of which have unlimited re-entry and plenty of time for late entry. Additionally, for players who are looking to get in for the minimum, 888poker will be running at least three live satellites that will guarantee no fewer than five seats to the Main Event. Ambassadors On Hand The 50-minute levels and 88K in starting chips are sure to entice recreational players but just in case that's not enough, 888poker is offering the opportunity to play with some of their popular ambassadors. For their first visit to Madrid, 888poker LIVE is bringing in the bulk of the 888poker ambassador roster including 2014 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Martin Jacobson, former #1-ranked PocketFiver Chris Moorman, WSOP on ESPN sideline reporter Kara Scott, Vivian Saliba, Sofia Lovgren, Dominik Nitsche, and their newest ambassador, Russia’s Daria Feschenko. The squad of ambassadors will, of course, be battling for the first-place prize while at the same time looking to meet and greet those who come out to take a shot in the Main Event. Win A Seat Online Participating in the live satellites is not the only way to win a seat into the Madrid Festival Main Event. Online satellites are currently running on 888poker. Players can take a shot at a $1,600 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival Package which includes the buy-in to the Main Event, three nights accommodation in Madrid from January 31 - February 3, and an additional $250 in travel expenses. The direct satellites have a $109 buy-in but super satellites that help players work their way up to the $109 buy-in level start for as little as $0.01 online. More Than The Main The Madrid Festival promises poker players even more action than just the Main Event. There are twelve total events over the course of 12 days. Everything kicks off with the €220 buy-in Opening Event with a €100,000 guarantee. The schedule also includes live versions of some popular 888poker online events including a €330 Whale, €55 Swordfish, and the €110 Hurricane. The €2,200 High Roller has a €50,000 guarantee and on the opposite end of the spectrum, the High Noon Turbo may appeal to beginners with its €50 buy-in. Also included are a Ladies Event and a Pot Limit Omaha tournament. 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival Schedule DATE EVENT BUY-IN 01-23 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1A €220 01-24 Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1B - 5 Seats GTD €50 01-24 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1B €220 01-24 The Thunder - €10,000 GTD €88 01-25 Turbo Satellite to Opening Event 1C - 5 Seats GTD €50 01-25 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1C €220 01-25 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 1D - turbo €220 01-26 888poker LIVE Madrid Festival - €100,000 GTD Opening Event Day 2 & Final Table 01-26 The Breeze - €5,000 GTD €110 01-27 High Noon Turbo €50 01-27 The Hurricane - €5,000 GTD €110 01-28 The Swordfish - €5,000 GTD €55 01-29 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1A - 5 Seats GTD €110 01-29 High Roller Day 1 - €50,000 GTD €2,200 01-30 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1B - 5 Seats GTD €110 01-30 High Roller Final Day - 01-30 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1A - €800,000 GTD €888 01-31 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1B - €800,000 GTD €888 01-31 The Mega Knockout [€50 Bounty] - €10,000 GTD €115 02-01 Super Satellite to Main Event Day 1C - 3 Seats GTD €110 02-01 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1C - €800,000 GTD €888 02-01 Pot Limit Omaha €150 02-02 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 1D - TURBO - €800,000 GTD €888 02-02 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Day 2 - 02-02 The Whale - €10,000 GTD €330 02-02 Ladies Event €55 02-03 888poker LIVE Madrid - Main Event - Final Day -
  12. Poker Central has acquired the brand and assets for High Stakes Poker, the company announced on Tuesday, and will begin streaming episodes of the show on the PokerGO platform in the coming months. Additionally, Poker Central is said to have future plans for the series, including new episodes. "High Stakes Poker was a remarkable poker program," said Sampson Simmons, president of Poker Central. "With star players, massive pots, and memorable moments, the show beautifully conveys the drama of cash game poker. Bringing the existing episodes of High Stakes Poker to our platform and producing more in the future will enable us to recapture the nostalgia and magic of the show for our PokerGO subscribers in the present-day poker climate." [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] High Stakes Poker took place from 2006-2011 and included seven seasons of high-stakes, cash game action during the height of the poker boom. Over its many seasons, the show was hosted by Gabe Kaplan, AJ Benza, Kara Scott, and Norm Macdonald, with Kaplan and Benza hosting together through the show’s first five seasons. The show’s success was propelled by the astronomical stakes of poker that were being played by superstar poker players and celebrities, oftentimes sitting behind huge bricks of cash and mounds of large denomination chips that became staples of the show. Notable players to appear on High Stakes Poker were Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, Gus Hansen, Antonio Esfandiari, Sammy Farha, Phil Galfond, and Barry Greenstein. Brunson, Negreanu, Esfandiari, and Greenstein appeared in all seven seasons of the show. If you don't already have a subscription to PokerGO and are interested in watching High Stakes Poker, sign up today using the promo code "POCKET5S" for $10 off the PokerGO annual plan. Minimum buy-ins for High Stakes Poker ranged from $100,000 to $500,000, depending on the season, and plenty of episodes featured millions of dollars at stake. During Season 4 of High Stakes Poker, poker pro David Benyamine went at it with celebrity businessman Guy Laliberte to create the largest pot in the show’s history, only it came with a plot twist. Largest Pot in High Stakes Poker History In a game with $300-$600 blinds and a $1,200 straddle, Farha started the action with a raise to $4,200 from under the gun with the [poker card="Ah"][poker card="3s"]. Benyamine made the call with the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="8c"] and Laliberte called from the big blind with the [poker card="Kd"][poker card="5d"]. The flop was [poker card="Kc"][poker card="5c"][poker card="3d"]. Farha picked up bottom pair, but it was the top two pair for Laliberte and nut flush draw for Benyamine that really made this hand explode. On the flop, Laliberte checked, Farha bet $13,000, and Benyamine raised to $43,000. Laliberte reraised and made it $168,000 to go. Farha folded and Benyamine, behind bricks of cash, stood up, contemplated the decision, and then moved all in for $600,000. Laliberte turned his hand over and thought about the decision before making the call. Laliberte first said to run it once but then the two players went back and forth on what to do. Laliberte had said that the money doesn’t matter to him and would do what Benyamine wanted. Laliberte eventually offered to just take the pot before Benyamine’s all-in raise, which Benyamine agreed to. High Stakes Poker also helped young guns such as Tom Dwan get immense exposure. Of course, it also helps when you play $919,600 pots against one of the game’s greats on television. Although the hand between Laliberte and Benyamine created the largest pot in High Stakes Poker history, the hand ultimately finished with a much cheaper result. The hand Dwan played against Greenstein in Season 5 was played to the fullest for more than $900,000 and it had a single winner. Playing $500-$1,000 blinds, Peter Eastgate raised to $3,500 with the [poker card="As"][poker card="Kh"] and Greenstein reraised to $15,000 with the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Ac"] on the button. Dwan was next and made the call from the small blind with the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Qs"]. Eastgate also called and the flop came down [poker card="Qh"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2s"]. Dwan fired $28,700, Eastgate folded, and Greenstein raised to $100,000. Dwan made it $244,600 to go and Greenstein moved all in for what was effectively $436,100 total. Dwan called and the pot ballooned to $919,600. Like the Laliberte and Benyamine hand, the question of how many times to run the board out came up. Greenstein said he wanted to run it once but asked if they wanted to take a couple hundred thousand back. Dwan declined and they were off to the races. The turn was the [poker card="Qc"] to vault Dwan into the lead with trip queens. The river completed the board with the [poker card="7d"] and Dwan was the winner of the biggest hand in High Stakes Poker history.
  13. With the postponement of the World Series of Poker, and live poker taking a back seat in general, we decided to check in on some of the 888poker ambassadors to see how they are coping with quarantine, how they are passing the time away from the live felt, and what they are most looking forward to when the coast is finally clear. Normally right about now long-time 888poker ambassador Kara Scott would be preparing to spend the summer at the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas in preparation for her high-profile assignment as the lead sideline reporter for ESPN’s coverage of the World Series of Poker Main Event. Instead, Scott is currently quarantined with her immediate family in Italy but she is still in the habit of creating poker content. Her new podcast, The Heart of Poker, launched in late January and in recent weeks has featured high-profile poker personalities that include fellow 888poker ambassador Dominik Nitsche, Danielle Andersen, David Williams, Brad Owen, and Maria Ho. Other than poker, what activity have you missed the most since the lockdown began? I've really missed wandering around our city every day, going to the market to buy fresh food, or having a drink outside with friends. We've been living on the family farm since February which means we've been really lucky to have access to fresh food now that it's spring, but not being able to just buy the things I want has been aggravating. I have some serious food allergies so I don't do well when I can't buy my own food! What's the best TV show or movie you've discovered during lockdown? I didn't discover it during lockdown but I'm re-watching Killjoys which is just fantastic. I'm a big sci-fi buff and this show has really great action but also a lot of heart and humor and I love that. What is the biggest frustration you’ve had during lockdown? No Wi-Fi! Can you imagine months with no Wi-Fi? The phone signal in most of the house is so poor that I have to turn airplane mode on and off again just to kickstart it into downloading every photo on Instagram. I think it's been the number one reason for my blood pressure raising over these months. Plus, it's just ridiculously hard to work and every file I send takes an hour. What's the one thing about live poker that used to tilt you that all of a sudden you miss? The late nights. I've always been really bad at playing poker after midnight so tournaments that start late just crush me. But now... I'd LOVE a chance to be up at 1 am playing live poker and then going for a drink afterward. What have you found to be a silver lining surrounding quarantine? I really hope that people generally remember and keep some of the good habits we've gained through this. Food preservation and reducing food waste are huge issues for the world and when you don't have easy access to the shops, we all have to be better and using everything in the fridge before it goes bad. How are you using this time to work on your poker game? Oh boy. My poker game has NOT improved in this time. See my above lack of Wi-Fi. What is something new that you have learned or are trying to learn during lockdown? I've been working on learning more about online marketing and using social media (specifically Instagram) better. I really love photography and I've recently been trying to schedule time to go outside and take more pictures. The farm is one of the most beautiful spots in the world so I have a lot of choice for photos! What's the first place you're going to travel to once we're able to? Canada! I'm not sure when I'll be able to but I really want to go home and see my family. My father had a heart attack last month during the quarantine and it was terrifying to be so far away and not able to help or be there to support my Mom. Thankfully, he's doing a lot better now and is recovering well. It definitely focuses the mind though and has given me a real drive to go home to spend time with them all. Scott’s The Heart of Poker podcast is available to download through Apple iTunes and to keep up with her live chats, she can be found on Instagram under her own name, karascott.
  14. For many who take the game of poker seriously, they can point to another player who has had a profound effect on their game. Whether it’s emerging from obscurity to win the Main Event of the World Series of Poker, pulling off heart-stopping bluffs on High Stakes Poker, or crushing the nosebleed stakes of online poker, some of the best poker players in the world have helped to inspire generations of new players find their way in poker. We've spoken with some of the biggest stars in the game today about who it their poker idols are. Kara Scott is so much more than a poker player. In addition to boasting over $650,000 in career tournament earnings, Scott has gone on to be considered one of the most successful poker commentators of her era through her yearly sideline reporting of the World Series of Poker Main Event on ESPN as well as an acclaimed podcast host with her show The Heart of Poker. Traveling the world as an 888poker ambassador affords Scott all kinds of opportunities to play. Last June she won the Ladies Event at the 888poker LIVE stop in Barcelona. When you first started playing poker, who was the player you admired the most? When I first started playing poker, one of the first things I watched was the movie Rounders. That scene with Johnny Chan and the way that Mike talks about him and his skill, the way the casino reacted to him walking in and sitting down to play, that stayed with me. Watching the clips of his WSOP championships made him seem like a superstar to me. What was it about that player that you liked or admired? The fact that Chan had back to back Main Event bracelets gave him such a mystique. He’d done this incredible thing in our game. Something that’ll likely never, ever be done again. It made him seem larger than life in a way I’m guessing a lot of new players see Hellmuth for his bracelet record. When did you first get to see them play (either on TV or live)? I first saw him in the movie Rounders and then I went and watched what I could find of his WSOP wins. Did you ever get to meet that player and what was that like? I did actually get to meet Johnny Chan, less than a year after seeing him on screen for the first time. I was hosting a tiny cable poker show back then with my friend, poker pro Nick Wealthall. Chan was coming to London on a press tour and by some miracle, they’d convinced him to do our show. He must have been expecting a lot more than our tiny setup! He was so gracious though, I remember that. I’d worked all week doing just a ton of research and writing up all my questions and me, overeager newbie, arrived with 15 pages of notes, just to hear the producers say they thought it would be better for Nick to interview him alone. Nick has always been both a great friend and a generous colleague and he insisted I get to be there for the interview and he made sure there was space for me to take part. I’ve never forgotten that and I’ve never forgotten how cool Johnny was. Although I’ve seen him at the poker table and I’ve interviewed him loads of times since then, I still have the Queen he signed for me after that interview, 15 years ago. Can you tell me about something either on the felt or off of the felt that you learned from them? Although we were a much smaller show that Johnny was expecting, he still gave us a great interview and spent loads of time with us on-air. He was big-time and we were small-time but you never would have guessed that from his demeanor. How does it feel to know somebody out there looks at you the way you looked up to your favorite player? It’s such a wild thought. When people ask me for an autograph or a photo, it’s always hugely gratifying that they like my work. I’m no Johnny Chan but I’m glad I have my spot in the poker world!

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