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  1. History is made every year at the World Series of Poker. It’s part of what makes the WSOP one of the most enduring and alluring brands in the poker industry to this day. This year, a different type of history has already been made. For the first time since its inception in 1970, the WSOP live events have been postponed. This has forced the WSOP to move in a different, and in some ways, uncharted direction. The WSOP summer series is going to take place entirely online with players battling for gold bracelets by clicking buttons as opposed to shuffling chips. Additionally, the WSOP has selected a partner in GGPoker, to give players outside of the United States their first shots at an online bracelet. Holding their entire gold bracelet series online is a first for the WSOP as is taking on an outside online partner to offer bracelets. But, of course, it’s by no means the first time a bracelet will be won online. The WSOP has five years under their belts of expanding their online poker footprint with a total of 18 bracelets events having already been played out. So, before we push ahead to look at a whole new crop of online bracelet winners, we are taking a look back at how the WSOP Online bracelet events have evolved. 2015 Nearly two years after the launch of WSOP.com in the state of Nevada, officials at the summer series announced the first-ever official online bracelet event. The $1,000 WSOP.com ONLINE Championship was the lone online event on the 68-event 2015 schedule. The prize pool reached $859,750 as 905 entries turned the event into the largest regulated online poker tournament in the U.S. at the time. With all of the players needing to be in Nevada, the final six took their chip stacks offline and batted for the bracelet inside the Rio. The final table included David Tuthill, Craig Varnell, and Anthony ‘casedismissed’ Spinella who went on to win the first online gold bracelet and $197,743. [table id=60 /] 2016 In 2016, the WSOP ran it back. They offered the same $1,000 WSOP.com ONLINE Championship with the same format, bringing the final six players back to a live setting to play it out. The field saw a dramatic increase in year-over-year participants as 1,247 runners, a 38% increase, pushed the prize pool to $1,184,650. Colorado native turned Las Vegas local Clayton ‘SLARKDUCK’ Maguire took down a career-high score of $210,279 from a final table where he was the only local participant. [table id=61 /] 2017 The first expansion of the online schedule took place in 2017. In addition to the $1,000 WSOP.com ONLINE Championship, players were offered a lower buy-in event and the first-ever WSOP.com ONLINE High Roller. It was also the first year that the online events would play out online as opposed to a final table in the Amazon room. Nipun ‘Javatinii’ Java took down the $1,000 WSOP.com ONLINE Championship for his second bracelet of the series and a $237,668 payday. The Championship event again grew in size, however with a more modest increase. The 1,312 runners and a prize pool of $1,246,400 represented a roughly 5% field increase. It was former WSOP Main Event final tablist Thomas ‘FLOATZ’ Cannuli that booked the biggest online win of the year. Cannuli topped the 424 players of the first-ever $3,333 WSOP.com ONLINE High Roller for a $322,815 score, the largest haul of any online to that date and a win that continues to be the third-largest online bracelet payday to date. The online events were also starting to generate a good deal of rake. In 2017, online events raked just over $225,000 as opposed to the $62,350 of the single event of the previous year. [table id=62 /] 2018 Once again, history was made in the online arena in 2018. Thanks to the multi-state online pact that was agreed to just before the start of the WSOP that allows players in Nevada, New Jersey, and Delaware to play against each other, players in New Jersey were able to compete in gold bracelet events without heading to Nevada. The WSOP added a fourth online offering. And with the influx of Garden State online grinders, every online bracelet event of the year turned set a record of some kind. The first online bracelet event, a $365 tournament, drew 2,972 runners, which was far-and-away the largest field ever to battle for an online gold bracelet. In the second event, Matthew ‘mendey’ Mendez then became the first player to ever win a bracelet from outside of Nevada by winning the $565 Online bracelet event for over $135,000. The $1,000 WSOP.com ONLINE Championship again hit a new high for entries when Ryan ‘Toosick’ Tosoc defeated a field of 1,635 entries for over $238,000, a nearly 25% increase in runners from the year before. Finally, Chance ‘BingShui’ Kornuth set a new record for the largest online bracelet event payday by winning the $3,200 High Roller for $341,598. [table id=63 /] 2019 In 2019, there was a worry about the growth of online events as the U.S. Department of Justice issued a new opinion of the Wire Act . The opinion put in jeopardy the ability for players in New Jersey to take part in the upcoming World Series of Poker. However, a New Hampshire judge vacated the newly issued DOJ opinion and cleared New Jersey players to fortify what became a nine-event online bracelet schedule. Some of the biggest names in both the live and online arenas captured bracelets in 2019 including the first for New Jersey-based top-ranked U.S. online pros Yong ‘LuckySpewy1’ Kwon and Daniel ‘centrfieldr’ Lupo. Shawn ‘bucky21’ Buchanan, Taylor 'Galactar' Paur, and Upeshka ‘gomezhamburg' De Silva also booked victories. Well-known pro Brandon ‘DrOctogon’ Adams won the $3,200 High Roller bracelet event for the largest online bracelet score to date of $411,560. In total, the nine online events on the 2019 schedule generated just over $755,000 in rake. [table id=64 /] 2020 The previously scheduled 2020 World Series of Poker was set to have another increase in events, upping the total to 14. Now, the adjustment to an extensive online schedule in the face of the coronavirus pandemic gives players a wealth of opportunities to win some online hardware. With 85 total bracelets up for grabs, every current online bracelet event record should expect to be shattered. More than half of the bracelets will be contested on WSOP’s online partner GGPoker which means that players from all over the world, who never had the opportunity to compete for a bracelet, will all of a sudden be able to grind for one. From prize pools to paydays, the numbers in this year's event should soar as players make plans to be online to add their name to the WSOP history books.
  2. The first ever World Series of Poker online bracelet event attracted 905 entrants, creating a prize pool of $859,000. The top 100 will finish in the money, with a top prize of almost $200,000 on the line. --- Tournament Poker Edgeis the only poker training site dedicated exclusively to MTTs and features over 1,000 training videos, blogs, articles, podcasts and a dedicated strategy forum for members. Check Tournament Poker Edge out on Twitter. --- WSOP officials Tweeted on Thursday afternoon, "Congrats to Nevada residents & visitors playing the online bracelet on @WSOPcom. You are part of history. Largest prize pool & 1st place prize in regulated U.S. online poker history!" The top six will return to the Rio on Saturday to play down to a winner. Here's how the final six will pay out: 1st Place: $197,743 2nd Place: $116,066 3rd Place: $73,079 4th Place: $55,884 5th Place: $47,286 6th Place: $33,530 Twitter was on fire about the tournament, a first for the industry. Tournament Poker Edge's Derek Tenbusch said, "Railing a friend in the WSOP online event, drinking a beer, and taking questions. Come hang out… Showered from the online event. Structure was horrid. Hopefully they improve on that next year." Also Tweeting was Phil Hellmuth (pictured), who said, "Online poker is back!! Sort of: I just played $1,000 WSOP No Lim Hold'em tourn here in Las Vegas. Can't wait for full legalization in USA!" Hellmuth was spotted at his home casino, Aria, later on Thursday night. Also weighing in was Dan WretchyMartin, who lamented on Twitter, "Just got showered in the online wsop bird, sighhhh what a fun day that coulda been." Grayson the_dean22 Nichols added, "Busted just short of the $ in the first online @WSOP event. Great turn out, lots of fun. Please do more of these in the future." The tournament's field sat at 879 with 20 minutes left in late reg, so the event got a nice boost at the last minute. Everyone began with 10,000 in chips and the levels will last 40 minutes when the final six reconvene at the Rio on Saturday at Noon Pacific. Here's how the final six stack up: 1. Craig imgrinding Varnell - 2,572,767 2. Anthony holdplz Spinella (pictured at top) - 2,013,330 3. Ryan HITTHEPANDA Franklin - 1,832,138 4. Andrew Rose - 1,104,863 5. Hunter Cichy - 1,059,089 6. David lolcats Tuthill - 467,813 Amazingly, four of the final six are members of the PocketFives community. Varnell, who calls Colorado home, has $332,000 in career online tournament winnings. Behind him is Spinella, whom you could argue is the favorite to win it all. He has $4.6 million in career online tournament winnings and another $654,000 in the live world. Franklin, who has almost $4 million in online MTT winnings, was ranked #14 in the world on PocketFives in 2010, while Tuthill calls Oregon home. Stay tuned to PocketFives for the latest WSOP coverage, brought to you by Tournament Poker Edge. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook.
  3. [caption width="640"] Sam Panzica is now a two-time WPT winner after taking down the Bay 101 Shooting Star event Friday (WPT photo/Joe Giron)[/caption] When the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star final table kicked off Friday afternoon in San Jose, California, the focus was clearly on Chino Rheem. With three WPT titles already to his credit, and over 44% of the chips in play, Rheem seemed to be on the verge of becoming the first player in WPT history to win four titles. Sam Panzica wanted no part of that storyline though and went on to win his second WPT title of Season XV and $1,373,000 while Rheem had to settle for a third place finish. With all eyes on him at the start of the day, Rheem didn’t disappoint, picking up the first three eliminations. Just 37 hands in Rheem went to work at whittling the field. Rheem raised to 225,000 from the cutoff before Rainer Kempe moved all in for 2,190,000 from the small blind. Rheem snap-called and tabled [poker card="kh"][poker card="kd"] while Kempe showed [poker card="as"][poker card="9c"]. The [poker card="7h"][poker card="6h"][poker card="3h"] flop was a great one for Rheem and when the [poker card="3d"] turn and [poker card="8s"] river failed to connect with Kempe, the German was eliminated in sixth place. Kempe was also the last remaining bounty, meaning Rheem picked up an additional $2,500 cash. Just over 90 minutes later, Rheem did it again. From the button Rheem made it 320,000 to go and Dennis Stevermer moved all in from the big blind for 1,425,000. Rheem called and tabled [poker card="ks"][poker card="9h"] but found himself behind Stevermer’s [poker card="ad"][poker card="8d"]. The [poker card="9c"][poker card="7s"][poker card="6c"] flop flipped the odds in Rheem’s favor and he stayed in front through the [poker card="4h"] turn and [poker card="qh"] river to eliminate Stevermer in fifth. Things went slightly off track 20 minutes later when he clashed with Anthony Spinella in a pot that cost him the chip lead. With 2,775,000 already in the pot and a completed board of [poker card="kd"][poker card="5h"][poker card="2c"][poker card="7d"][poker card="ac"], Spinella check-called Rheem’s 1,500,000 bet and tabled [poker card="ad"][poker card="2d"] for a river pair of aces while Rheem showed and mucked [poker card="kc"][poker card="9s"] for second pair. Following that hand, Spinella had more than half of the chips in play. Five hands after that Rheem was hard at work rebuilding his stack. Rheem raised to 325,000 from UTG and Paul Volpe called from the big blind. The flop was [poker card="8d"][poker card="7s"][poker card="4s"] and Volpe checked, Rheem bet 375,000 and Volpe responded by moving all in fro 2,975,000. Rheem didn’t hesitate to call and tabled [poker card="kh"][poker card="kd"] while Volpe turned over [poker card="qs"][poker card="js"] for a flush draw. The [poker card="2c"] turn and [poker card="8c"] river were no help for the former #1-ranked online poker player in the world and Volpe was out in fourth place. Five hands later, Rheem re-took the chip lead from Spinella. The first 54 hands of three-handed play were all about Rheem and Spinella taking turns as chip leader but once Panzica took his turn with the top spot, he never relinquished it again. Rheem’s run at history took a major hit on the 98th hand of three-handed play. Panzica raised to 500,00 from the button and Rheem defended his big blind. Rheem check-called a 500,000 bet after the [poker card="as"][poker card="3c"][poker card="2c"] flop and then check-called again after the [poker card="ks"] river. The [poker card="qs"] river got Rheem to check a third time, Panzica bet 2,100,000 and after taking some time to think over his decision, Rheem called and mucked after Panzica showed [poker card="ad"][poker card="kd"] for top two pair. A few hands later Spinella doubled up through Rheem, leaving him with just two big blinds. On the very next hand Rheem moved all in for his last 475,000 and Spinella called from the big blind. Rheem was ahead with [poker card="qc"][poker card="th"] to Spinella’s [poker card="5h"][poker card="3h"] but the [poker card="kd"][poker card="ks"][poker card="8s"][poker card="5c"][poker card="2h"] runout spelled an end to Rheem’s run in third place. Three-handed action took over 3.5 hours but heads-up play took almost no time at all. Five hands after Rheem was shown the door, Panzica picked up his first elimination of the final table. Spinella raised to 650,000, Panzica moved all in Spinella called. Spinella tabled [poker card="ac"][poker card="8c"] but found himself behind the [poker card="ah"][poker card="ts"] of Panzica. The [poker card="jh"][poker card="5h"][poker card="3d"][poker card="4d"][poker card="5c"] board kept Panzica ahead for good and eliminated Spinella. Panzica, who already has a $15,000 seat in the upcoming WPT Tournament of Champions, was given the $15,000 seat from this event as cash. Final Table Payouts Sam Panzica - $1,373,000 Anthony Spinella - $786,610 Chino Rheem - $521,660 Paul Volpe - $349,610 Dennis Stevermer - $243,090 Rainer Kempe - $188,460
  4. Sunday at the 2018 World Series of Poker was a busy one with thousands of players battling on the felt at the Rio as well as the virtual felt of WSOP.com. It ended up being a big day for France, with both bracelets won on Sunday going to French players. Here's a full recap of what went down on Sunday Julien Martini Lives the Dream by Winning $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo Julien Martini used to watch poker on TV in awe of the big names and the even bigger stakes. That was on his mind Sunday afternoon as he beat Kate Hoang to win his first career WSOP bracelet and $239,771. "When I was 14 and I started poker, I was like, ‘Whoa, what kind of guy can win a $1,500 tournament or a $10,000?’," said Martini. "I was dreaming about this for seven years. It’s one of the best things in my life. I’m super proud and very happy." Martini and the other three players who returned to the table on Sunday were supposed to be doing something else. Originally scheduled to end on Saturday, the event needed an extra day to finish thanks to a bigger-than-expected field of 911 players. This is the second time in three years that Hoang finished runner-up in an Omaha Hi-Lo event at the WSOP. In 2016, she finished second to Kyle Bowker in the $3,000 Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo event. Other notables that cashed in the event include Chris Bjorin (17th - $8,296), Daniel Buzgon (18th - $8,296), Mike Leah (30th - $5,605), Jerry Wong (33rd - $5,605), Benny Glaser (63rd - $3,526), John Racener (86th - $2,595). Final Table Payouts Julien Martini - $239,771 Kate Hoang - $148,150 Mack Lee - $104,0164 William Kopp - $74,058 Brandon Ageloff - $53,482 Chad Eveslage - $39,182 Rafael Concepcion - $29,128 Denny Axel - $21,977 Tammer Ilcaffas - $16,832 Nick Petrangelo Leads Final Six into $100,000 Super High Roller Final Table Just five events into the 2018 WSOP, Elio Fox has already won one WSOP bracelet and now he's suddenly at a final table with a chance at a second. But he's not the headliner. Fox sits third in chips at the $100,000 Super High Roller final table behind Nick Petrangelo and Bryn Kenney. Stephen Chidwick, the #1-ranked player on the Global Poker Index, sits sixth. Sunday's play started with 10 players still in contention and Petrangelo was firmly planted at the top and he stayed there as Adrian Mateos, Fedor Holz, Chris Moore and Jason Koon all fell by the wayside. Petrangelo, Kenney and Fox have all won a WSOP bracelet before, while the three players making up the bottom half of the chip counts, Andreas Elier, Aymon Hata, and Chidwick, have not. Play resumes Monday at 6 pm ET and will be streamed on PokerGO. Final Table Chip Counts Nick Petrangelo - 12,200,000 Bryn Kenney - 10,200,000 Elio Fox - 8,620,000 Andreas Eiler - 8,490,000 Aymon Hata - 7,280,000 Stephen Chidwick - 5,740,000 Duta and Alberquerque Have Colossal Days on Sunday Two more starting flights of the $565 Colossus made sure that the tables at the Rio were jam-packed with players of all skill levels taking a shot at a potentially huge return. After 3,495 players played Saturday's two flights, 3,519 more showed up on Sunday. Nobody enjoyed Flight 1C more than Romanian Florian Duta. He bagged up 442,000 - almost twice as much as the next biggest stack from 1C. That stack of 241,000 belongs to WSOP bracelet winner John Racener. While Duta's stack is impressive, Philip Alberquerque did even better later in the day. The American finished Flight 1D with 503,000 and finds himself sitting second overall behind Day 1A leader Anthony Parill, who finished with 607,000. For the 2018 event to reach the 18,054-player field size, Flights 1E and 1F on Monday will need to average 5,520 players each. The final two flights last year had 3,966 and 3,923 players respectively. Day 1C Top 5 Chip Counts Florian Duta - 442,000 John Racener - 241,000 Jong Jin - 238,000 Clayton Maguire - 172,000 Abe Deguzman Jr. - 151,000 Day 1D Top 5 Chip Counts Philip Alberquerque - 503,000 Daniel Cai - 272,000 Alex Foxen - 268,000 Maxime Heroux - 260,000 Ilkin Amirov - 256,000 Chris Vitch in Pole Position For Third Bracelet in Three Years Two years ago, Chris Vitch won his first WSOP bracelet in the $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball event. He followed that up in 2017 by winning the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event. Now, he's in position to win his third career bracelet and doing it the event that started his winning trend. Vitch bagged up 493,000 chips to lead the final 12 players in the $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball event. The group chasing him includes Scott Seiver, Bryce Yockey, Frank Kassela and Mike Leah. The day began with over 90 players still chasing the bracelet. There were 37 players who busted on Sunday who did manage to get into the money before their tournament ended. Included in that group was Chris Ferguson picking up his first cash of 2018 (48th - $3,721). Some of the big names who picked up a result on Sunday included Ismael Bojang (47th - $3,721), Shaun Deeb (37th - $3,937), Jon Turner (32nd - $4,329), John Monnette (21st - $5,847), Billy Baxter (18th - $7,163) and Brian Hastings ($14th - $7,163). Final 12 Chip Counts Chris Vitch - 493,000 Damjan Radanov - 476,000 George Trigeorgis - 462,000 Scott Seiver - 431,000 Alex Simma - 400,000 Luis Velador - 390,000 Jesse Hampton - 350,000 Bryce Yockey - 271,000 Frank Kassela - 268,000 Mike Leah - 174,000 Johannes Becker - 172,000 Michael Wagner - 147,000 Chris Bjorin Bags Biggest Stack After Day 1 of $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo The second $10,000 "Championship" event of the 2018 WSOP started Sunday afternoon as 161 players showed up for the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship. Through eight levels of play, 86 players were eliminated but Chris Bjorin was most definitely not one of them. Bjorin finished Day 1 of the event with 249,500, good enough for the overnight chip lead. Right behind him is Jesse Martin, Daniel Ratigan, and Steve Chanthabouasy. Another eight levels are scheduled for Monday starting at 5 pm ET. Top 10 Chip Counts Chris Bjorin - 249,500 Jesse Martin - 232,000 Daniel Ratigan - 231,000 Steve Chanthabouasy - 228,000 Tai Nguyen - 211,000 Viacheslav Zhukov - 206,500 Robert Mizrachi - 204,000 Nikolai Yakovenko - 203,000 Rafael Concepcion - 194,500 Larry Kantor - 179,500 William 'Twooopair' Reymond Makes First WSOP Cash a Memorable One For the first time in WSOP history, players in more than one state were playing online for a WSOP bracelet on Sunday. A record-smashing 2,972 entries pushed the total prize pool to $974,816 - well past the $500,000 guarantee. Taking home the winner's share of that and his first career WSOP bracelet was Frenchmen William 'Twooopair' Reymond. At the start of the tournament, Reymond was happy just to be clicking buttons. <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-partner="tweetdeck"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Playing the $365 online WSOP event and listening to <a href="https://twitter.com/andrewneeme?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@andrewneeme</a> on twitch. My definition of an almost perfect Sunday <a href="https://t.co/F3OxXRIiA0">pic.twitter.com/F3OxXRIiA0</a></p>&mdash; William Reymond (@WilliamReymond) <a href="https://twitter.com/WilliamReymond/status/1003437120948563968?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">June 4, 2018</a></blockquote><script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> Shawn 'sHaDySTeeM' Stroke took home $94,265 for his runner-up performance. To the surprise of nobody, Anthony 'nowb3athat' Spinella made the final table and eventually finished seventh for $21,251. Spinella won the very first online bracelet in 2015 and earlier this year became the first to win a WSOP Circuit ring playing on WSOP.com. Final Table Payouts William 'Twooopair' Reymond - $154,996 Shawn 'sHaDySTeeM' Stroke - $94,265 Stephen 'SteveSpuell' Buell - $69,017 Ryan 'LoveMy11Cats' Belz - $50,593 Elliott 'Ekampen05' Kampen - $37,530 Josh 'YoelRomero' King - $27,977 Anthony 'nowb3athat' Spinella - $21,251 Michael 'myapologies' Hauptman - $16,279 Jennifer 'moistymire' Miller - $12,478
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