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Found 11 results

  1. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. In May, the poker world was surprised when it was announced that Daniel Negreanu, the face of PokerStars, was no longer going to be an ambassador for the online site. Daniel Negreanu And PokerStars Part Ways One of the most stable relationships in the poker world ended in May as Daniel Negreanu and PokerStars announced that they would be going their separate ways. Right before the World Series of Poker and only days after his high-profile wedding to Amanda Leatherman, Negreanu took to Twitter and posted a short video that announced that he would no longer be patched up for the online poker giant. Negreanu began representing the PokerStars brand in 2007 and quickly became the face of the company, including taking on plenty of criticism during PokerStars' controversial termination of the SuperNova Elite program in late 2015. “Daniel has been one of the most influential faces of poker and indeed PokerStars for 12 years,” said Stars Group Public Relations associate director Rebecca McAdam. “It has been wonderful to have his passion, support, and insights throughout our relationship. We wish Daniel the very best for the future, as well as wedded bliss and tons of run good this summer.” Six months after the end of his deal with PokerStars, Negreanu announced he would now be representing upcoming online poker site GGPoker in a deal that is believed to be worth even more than his contract with PokerStars. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] PocketFives Counts Down Top 50 Ahead of the 50th Annual World Series of Poker, the PocketFives editorial staff released their list of the 50 Greatest Players in World Series of Poker History. From old-school legends to internet grinders, the list is a snapshot of not just the history of the WSOP, but also of poker itself. Take a look back at our top 10 list of the players who made their name on the World Series of Poker stage. 10. Jason Mercier 9. Michael Mizrachi 8. Chris Ferguson 7. Erik Seidel 6. Daniel Negreanu 5. Johnny Chan 4. Phil Ivey 3. Stu Ungar 2. Doyle Brunson 1. Phil Hellmuth Phil Hellmuth Is Not Satisfied, Never Will Be With the 2019 World Series of Poker right around the corner, 15-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth spoke with PocketFives about what it means for him to hold all the records and what the 1989 Main Event winner was hoping would happen at the series, 30 years after his career-defining victory. “It’s in my nature, it’s in my DNA,” Hellmuth said of his drive to be the best. “I'm super competitive, and I’m competing against the best players in the world, in this era, and past and future eras, for greatest poker player of all time.” partypoker Invades Sin City Summer in Las Vegas belongs to the World Series of Poker. But in 2019, partypoker decided to get in on the action and announced that their partypoker MILLIONS series would be headed to the ARIA Hotel & Casino, marking the first time they’ve held a tournament in America. “We’re looking forward to MILLIONS making its debut this summer at the record,” said ARIA Director of Poker Operations Sean McCormack. “Our team is excited to add an event of this magnitude to our extensive summer schedule.” The partypoker MILLIONS had a $10,300 buy-in and a $5 million guarantee. The tournament ended up crushing the guarantee with Thomas Marchese taking home the $1,000,000 first-place prize of the over $5.36 million prize pool. Alex ‘SploogeLuge’ Foxen Wins May PLB Live or online, when it comes to poker Alex ‘SploogeLuge’ Foxen has proved he can do it all. In May, he took down the PocketFives Leaderboard for the first time. The former GPI #1-ranked player spent plenty of time in Canada this year, grinding some of the biggest online poker tournaments which helped him reach a career-high ranking of #4 in the world and soar past $5 million in lifetime online earnings.
  2. FIVE THINGS is a column, written by PocketFives President and Editor in Chief, Lance Bradley that covers pressing topics and current events in the poker world today. It will appear periodically at PocketFives.com. Chris Moorman Continues to Dominate Online Almost four years to the day that he was last ranked as the #1 online poker player in the world, Chris Moorman showed everybody that he's still got it. Moorman beat out 1,261 other players to win the PokerStars Sunday Warm-Up for nearly $40,000. His win came just days after he picked up his 28th PocketFives Triple Crown award. Moorman's dominance of online poker tournaments is well documented on PocketFives, but when you consider he doesn't put in the online volume he used to, it becomes even more clear that Moorman is one of the elite tournament players in the world. There is one glaring omission on Moorman's resume though. He's never won a PokerStars COOP title. He has come close though. In 2009 he finished eighth in the SCOOP Main Event. A year later he finished third in a SCOOP Medium $215 NLH event. The next year he finished third in the SCOOP High $2,100 NLHE event. This year's SCOOP schedule includes 183 events and with Moorman clearly in top form right now, this might be the year that Moorman gets one. WSOP Continues to Tinker with Player of the Year In 2017, the orld Series of Poker revamped their Player of the Year points system. After using GPI and BLUFF scoring systems, WSOP decided to create their own system that rewarded cashing over winning more than the previous systems had. Once players realized this and saw how it worked, there was more than a few vocal opponents who were happy to make their feelings known. The WSOP apparently heard them loud and clear and has, for the fourth time in as many years, changed the scoring system. The WSOP promises that the new system will better reward deep runs and wins over building a resume full of smaller cashes through more events. There are still some players disappointed that the new system is going to reward players who can afford to play the bigger buy-in events. The WSOP Player of the Year award should reflect the best performance of the year. The award shouldn't exclude players who don't play the $10,000 and up buy-in Championship events, but it's hard to consider anybody the best when they don't post strong results against fields largely considered to be the toughest of the year. Germans Unhappy with Super High Roller Bowl Invites In a little over five weeks some of the best poker players in the world will be at the Aria for the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl. With the field limited to 49 players, and 61 players putting down a deposit to play, a lottery was held for the first 30 seats in March. On Wednesday another 15 names, chosen by Aria Poker management, were released and while it includes the likes of Doug Polk, Fedor Holz, Jake Schindler and Bryn Kenney, it seems that some players are upset with the names chosen. In a tweet that's since been deleted, Steffen Sontheimer pointed out that 12 of the 15 chosen were American and a number of German players who had paid the deposit were passed over. Sontheimer replaced that tweet with the following:   Whether or not the German players were excluded on purpose or not, it makes no sense for the reigning Poker Masters Purple Jacket winner to not be guaranteed a seat in the other PokerCentral events at Aria. The way to build prestige for something new, such as the Purple Jacket, is to have it mean something. Allowing Sontheimer to buy-in to the Super High Roller Bowl if he wants to, would have given the broadcast team multiple opportunities to emphasize to viewers that he is the reigning Poker Masters champion. The same goes for US Poker Open winner Stephen Chidwick. PokerGO and the Aria are building something that could be very, very special in the poker world, but this feels like a real misstep. partypoker Shows Well at MILLIONS Grand Final The Great Poker War of 2018 has partypoker doing their best to usurp PokerStars as the leader not just in the online world, but in the live tournament scene as well. The partypoker MILLIONS Grand Final in Barcelona last week was a showcase for exactly what they're hoping for. The €10,300 buy-in Main Event came with a €10,000,000 guarantee which they smashed with 1,175 entrants. Before the Main Event wrapped up, the schedule also included two €25,000 buy-in events, a €50,000 event and a €100,000 event. Those events drew 88, 90, 57 and 48 players respectively. All four of those events easily surpassed their €2,000,000 guarantees with the €100,000 event prize pool more more than doubling the guaranteed amount. It's a sure-fire sign that players at all levels are recognizing the financial commitment that partypoker has put behind their LIVE tour. Players weren't the only ones who benefited though. Mypartypokerlive.com provided a top-tier live stream product alongside live updates, video interviews and other content. Considering the number of years they have to make up on PokerStars in the live arena, they certainly seem to be taking huge strides. Phil Galfond Progressing with Online Poker Site In the wake of PokerStars cutting off SuperNova Elite players with no notice and the ensuing fall out from some of the impacted players, Phil Galfond began putting the wheels in motion to launch his own online poker site. He made those plans public in September 2016 and had been mostly radio silent since then. That all changed this week when Galfond announced that Phase 1 of RunItOnce would launch this summer. According to Galfond, the first phase of release will only include cash games. Multi-table tournaments and sit-n-gos are expected to be part of Phase 2, which does not have release date. In the latest update, Galfond explained his reasoning for putting out the product in various phases. We decided to stay on course and deliver part of our offering quickly while also working on changes that will allow much more flexibility in our development process going forward. This meant a sped up launch, but a slightly slower path to our final product. Whether or not Galfond can build an online poker site, and more importantly a business that can survive the online poker market of 2018 remains to be seen, but observers who are disappointed or frustrated by the pace at which they're moving forward are missing the point. Galfond could very easily have acquired the software necessary, quickly put in place the necessary marketing and customer service channels and picked up the necessary licensing to operate in some European and ROW markets, but the likelihood of failure would have been sky high. Instead, Galfond and his team are taking their time to build a quality product while also making sure the ancillary product offerings, such as the VIP rewards program, aren't just cookie cutter copies of what's out already there. In the current online poker business environment, slow and steady is bound to at least stay in the race, if not win it. DISCLAIMER: The views expressed here do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of PocketFives.com or its owners.
  3. According to reports from Todd Witteles and Allen Kessler on Two Plus Two and Poker Fraud Alert, there has been a major shakeup at the Aria Poker Room in Las Vegas, allegedly due to theft. Witteles sourced a person who claimed "a bunch of Aria tournament people" were let go for theft: "The rumor is that when they paid people for cashing in tournaments, they did it in a room with no witnesses. Tokes were never recorded and they pocketed or skimmed from the cash tips." Witteles added that another source claimed an Aria's "poker tournament director" was let go "under suspicion of theft," saying, "The investigation turn into a rat-fest, with people trying to save their own skin or take someone down with them." Witteles added that no arrests were made and an investigation is still ongoing. He explained, "The 'General Manager' of the poker room [Leon Wheeler] resigned. However, apparently this was over a completely different matter and was unrelated to the thefts. This general manager was said to not have been involved with the thefts and the timing of his resignation seems to have been an unfortunate coincidence." Witteles then reiterated that Wheeler was reportedly not involved in any theft. Comps have also been part of the investigation. As a post on Poker Fraud Alert outlined, "There are suddenly new safeguards for comp issuance such that a player now must present an ID and player's card for every transaction and only the shift supervisor may issue it." Kessler posted on Two Plus Two, "Trying to get more details. What a shame. Best run room in Vegas." Another poster shared what details he knew of the investigation: "Whoever was doing the investigating seems to have taken a scorched earth approach, running off a massive portion of supervisor-level staff and their underlings." Aria is fresh off hosting the WPT500, which featured numerous starting days an affordable $565 buy-in. Craig imgrinding Varnell won the tournament after a five-way chop and over 5,100 entries were recorded. Needless to say, Aria's poker room was hopping throughout the tournament series. One source told Witteles, however, "Many of the dealers from the WPT500 have not received their envelopes for almost a month." Aria is also home to the high-stakes Ivey Room. Fourteen-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth serves as one of its brand ambassadors. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook.
  4. There’s nothing quite like the first time. For serious poker enthusiasts, there may be nothing more exciting than making your first trip to Las Vegas to participate in, or simply geek out to, the World Series of Poker. For those lucky people making their first trip to the series in 2018, we have some suggestions on how to fully embrace the WSOP experience. You won’t find any Cirque Du Soleil show recommendations or directions to the best sushi restaurants here, this is simply a guide to diving head first into a complete WSOP summer poker experience in Sin City. Hit The Hall The first time you head to the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino, tell your taxi or Uber driver to take you to the front entrance. Sure, they can drop you off at the “poker entrance” but you should experience the walk down the long hallway that leads to Rio convention area at least once. The closer you get to the action the more you’ll be inundated with banners of former WSOP Players of the Year and Main Event Champions. Doyle, Stu, Chris…Moneymaker. And, yes, Ferguson. They’re (almost) all there. Of the three major tournament areas, the Pavillion is the one you’ll see first. Go inside and take a deep breath in. Yes, some of the smells may be from players who have been up for days, unable or unwilling to shower, but everything in the Pavillion is pure poker. The cricket-like sound of shuffling chips, the floor at the big board announcing a new table of $10-20 Big O and single table satellites filling up and getting underway. The Pavillion houses cash games, satellites, the Daily Deepstack tournaments and occasionally overflow from WSOP bracelet events. For daily grinders, the Pavillion is where a ton of the action happens. Walk the hallway with the vendors, but be wary first-timers: try not to let someone attach a magnetic aura bracelet to your wrist or entice you with a whiff of orange colored oxygen. However, if you see Bart Hanson, Jonathan Little or even PocketFives' own Lance Bradley spending time in a booth, walk on over and see what's up. Interested in some “poker sunglasses”? They’ve got those too. It’s a mini poker market and just maybe you’ll find something you like. Finally, on your first pass check out both the Brazilia and the famed Amazon Room. In 2017 they had moved the televised "mothership" to the Brazilia so make sure you do a slow pass and get a behind the scenes look at what you watch on ESPN or PokerGO. Then hit the Amazon to see the room where so much WSOP history was made. Star Gazing When it comes to seeing stars, a trip to the WSOP is unlike a trip to Hollywood because poker celebrities are just about everywhere you look on any given day. The personalities you watch on TV like Negreanu, Greenstein, and Raymer are often times at the tables grinding it out to try to win another bracelet. There walkways in each of the tournament rooms where one can quite often spot a noted pro from the rail. Often times if you see one of your favorites in the hallway, they’d be happy to hear what a fan you are and pose for a shot for your Insta. Of course, use discretion. Quite often these guys are playing for many thousands of dollars, so use that keen poker instinct to pick an appropriate time to introduce yourself. Get Your Feet Wet, Splash Around If you came to the World Series to play, then it’s time to play. At the WSOP just about every poker experience is at your fingertips. Small stakes to nosebleed cash games are running 24/7. Want to win your way into a bracelet event? There’s an entire section dedicated to single table satellites that start as low as around $125 that can help you win entries to buy-in to bigger events. Tournament aficionados may choose to jump into one of the popular Daily Deepstacks. There’s four that fire daily - 1 p.m., 4 p.m., 7 p.m. and 10 p.m. They are all one-day events and have a buy-in ranging from $200 - $365. They are noted for having massive fields and pretty big paydays for those that can make it to the end. Take That (Gold Bracelet) Shot It should go without saying that when shot taking, never play with any money you can’t afford to lose. There’s little in the poker world that feels quite like taking a seat in a WSOP bracelet event for the first time. The WSOP gold bracelet has been one of the most enduring accolades in the game and anyone with the gumption and the buy-in can take a shot, make a run and potentially become a hometown hero, returning with a new piece of jewelry. Want to outsmart the masses when it comes to registering? It’s way too easy. Hit the cage when there’s no one around. Registration for every event is open around the clock, so take an unscheduled trip to the convention area at the end of the day or late into the night and register for any event days in advance. The lines can get extremely long for events like the Millionaire Maker and Monster Stack on the day of. Also available, online registering with a credit card via the WSOP’s partnership with Bravo. See Other People So you’ve seen the sights, watched the stars and taken a seat in a WSOP event. It’s been great, but you are sick of the Hash House and All American Bar & Grille. Perhaps, the Rio is wearing on you. Well, for many the entirety of their WSOP experience is actually far more than the series itself. Many major Las Vegas properties throw their own expansive summer poker series and there’s a ton of fun to be had there as well. The Aria poker room is one of the most acclaimed in the city and their Aria Poker Classic features two events daily (one at 11:00 a.m. one at 7:00 p.m.). If you bust in the tournaments at the Aria, you can hop in a cash game, get a pretty great grass-fed burger or slice of Forester pizza at Five50 Pizza Bar. The Wynn has a summer series of their own. Their poker room is one of luxury and their tournament area gives one the feeling like they are playing in an island resort. It doesn’t stop there: the Venetian, Golden Nugget, Binion’s and Planet Hollywood all have an extensive schedule of tournaments and cash game offering to go along with them. So when planning a schedule mix it up and see what’s out there. Whether you plan on heading to Las Vegas for two days or two weeks (or longer) there’s plenty to do for the complete poker fan.
  5. The World Series of Poker draws the primary attention for the duration of the Las Vegas summer. Tournament series across the strip grow each year and present legitimate competition to the offerings inside the Rio. Whether it's a single-day tournament, multi-million dollar guarantee, or three-figure buy-in mixed game events, there's plenty of poker to be played without ever collecting a WSOP receipt. Venetian DeepStack Championship Series Goes All-in The second-biggest series of the summer grows to gargantuan size this summer. The Venetian is throwing down $31 million in guarantees across 150 events between May 14 and July 29. Gone are the days of cramming into The Venetian poker room. The new era of the 103-table Sands Expo Convention Center arrives. Play starts on May 26 in an arena that rivals the size of the Amazon Room in the Rio. The Venetian and the Mid-States Poker Tour partner this summer for five events that include live streamed final tables. All five events carry a minimum $1 million guarantee and range in buy-in from $600 up to $5,000. Leading off the powerful lineup is the $1,100 $3.5 million event with the first of four Day 1s on Sunday, June 3. The $2.5 million guaranteed tournament of the same buy-in size last summer brought in 3,273 runners and promises to put 4,000 within striking distance next month. Other MSPT events on the schedule are the $600 $1 million guaranteed, $1,600 $3 million guaranteed, $3,500 $3.5 million guaranteed, and $5,000 $1 million guaranteed. A total of 16 events carry the big blind ante with single-day events and the two $5ks included. The series wraps with two $1,100 $1 million guaranteed tournaments that start after the WSOP Main Event gets going. Wynn stays Winning The most aesthetically pleasing playing area in Las Vegas puts $7 million up for grabs in the Wynn Summer Classic from June 1-July 16. All events aside from three at the Wynn are single-day events and every single No Limit Hold'em tournament offers the big blind ante format. Price points at the Wynn are $400, $550, and $1,100 with the guarantees for the respective buy-in levels are $50,000, $100,000, and $200,000. The rake is lower at the Wynn and the guarantees for multi-day events are sky-high. Last summer's $1,100 $1 million guaranteed brought in a field of 2,320. The Wynn placed two of those events on the calendar for 2018. The $1,100s own three starting flights each and start on June 14 and June 26. The Wynn Summer Classic Championship is a $1,600 $1.5 million guaranteed giant that should draw huge with a WSOP Main Event post-lim date of July 9. A $1 million guarantee for the 2017 Wynn title put a prize pool of close to $3 million up for grabs. ARIA offers low buy-in No Limit and Mixed Games The ARIA Poker Classic has a little bit of everything for both professionals and recs looking to get some value for one day of poker between May 26 and July 8. The majority of events on the ARIA schedule price out between $240 and $500. No Limit Hold'em is the main game but mixed game players can find a tournament or two of their liking during the summer. $470 non-Hold'em events include Eight-Game Mix, Omaha Hi-Lo, 2-7 Single Draw, and H.O.R.S.E. The "main event" of the ARIA Poker Classic is the $500 $1 million guaranteed WPT500. Nine starting flights are available with the first falling on June 25. Jon Borenstein won 2017's WPT 500 by defeating 3,542 entrants to take home the $230,000 first-place prize. Odds and ends Other properties who carry summer series include Planet Hollywood, Golden Nugget, and Binions. All have No Limit and Mixed Games available for low buy-ins with compatible structures for single-day and multi-day events.
  6. He bangs! William Hung (pictured), who gained fame after a stirring rendition of Ricky Martin's "She Bangs" on the FOX reality series "American Idol," has apparently ventured into the live poker world in recent days. Hung took down a $125 Nightly tournament at Aria in Las Vegas for $2,200 last week, defeating a field of 70 entrants. The celebrity sighting ignited a thread on Two Plus Two, with one poster saying, "Hung was a celebrity guest at Planet Hollywood this summer at one of their celebrity tournaments." Hung, whose musical career apparently didn't pan out, now works for the LAPD. Maybe we'll see him at the 2015 World Series of Poker along with a cavalcade of other celebrities? Another poster on Two Plus Two recalled his poker run-in with Hung: "I played with him at the Flamingo probably about seven or eight years ago. He showed up randomly in the middle of the day and got a seat. It was right around his peak popularity and the Flamingo floor immediately started announcing, 'William Hung is playing in the poker room, come play with him.' He had a small entourage with him that I think included his mom." Interestingly, seventh place in the Aria tournament Hung won went to Robert Williamson III, a WSOP bracelet winner with $2.2 million in career live tournament winnings, according to the Hendon Mob, dating back to 1994. Williamson's last four live cashes have been in the $125 Nightly events at Aria, including three straight seventh place finishes. His last five-figure live cash was in 2012. If you need a reminder of how old you are, 2014 was the tenth anniversary of Hung's appearance on "American Idol," which came during the show's third season in 2004. He left UC Berkley, where he was studying civil engineering, to pursue a music career and is now a tech crime analyst in Los Angeles. Hung has four career cashes in live tournaments for $8,100 total. The 14th season of "American Idol" kicks off in January. In his "American Idol" audition, Hung was cut off after less than a minute and reminded the judging panel of Simon Cowell, Randy Jackson, and Paula Abdul that he had no training in singing or dancing. Nevertheless, the memorable performance earned him a record deal. He bangs! Check it out:
  7. [caption width="640"] The Super High Roller Bowl confirmed 47 of 49 entrants on Tuesday.[/caption] Three months before cards are even in the air, the 2016 Super High Roller Bowl at Aria Hotel and Casino has sold out all 49 available seats. And the list of confirmed players reads like a who's-who of the high-stakes tournament scene - with the glaring omission of one name. Andrew Robl, Dan Colman, Doug Polk, Dan Smith and Fedor Holz are among the 47 confirmed names. Brian Rast, who won the 2015 Super High Roller Bowl, is also one of the players who have confirmed their place in the event. Not surprisingly, others from the 2015 final table are also slated to make another run. Runner-up Scott Seiver is joined by Connor Drinan, Timofey Kuznetsov, David Peters and Tom Marchese. Each one of those players cashed for at least $1 million last year when the buy-in was $500,000. "The speed at which this exciting event sold out is evidence of the popularity of the Super High Roller Bowl and of poker itself,” said Clint Stinchcomb, CEO of Poker Central, the broadcast partner of the event. “With some of the most exciting and famous players already locked in, the Super High Roller Bowl will be riveting to watch.” While most of the regulars from the high roller circuit are in this event, one such player is not amongst them. Phil Ivey, who played the event last year, is not included in the list of 47. Other players who are confirmed to play include Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, Phil Hellmuth and Erik Seidel. Only 47 of the 49 players in the field were announced as two final spots are being held for ARIA VIPs. A shot-clock will also be enforced throughout the tournament. Players will have 40 seconds to act on their hand and will have five 60-second time banks to use each day to extend their allotted time. Players are also expected to adhere to a business casual dress code and players are not permitted to wear sunglasses at the table. This year, the buy-in is $300,000 and the prizepool is guaranteed at $15,000,000. With $300,000 added to the prizepool by sponsors, the SHRB is a negative-rake event. “I’ve never seen a high-stakes tournament sell out three months in advance," Sean McCormack, ARIA Director of Poker Operations. "It’s unprecedented. We have a significant waiting list, too.” The speed at which the event filled even caught some players off-guard. Registration opened on January 22 and nearly four weeks later, interested players were being turned away. Max Silver, who won a $25,000 High Roller event at Aria last May, attempted to lock up his seat in mid-February, only to find there was no more room. "Guess I'm not playing the Aria 300K," Silver tweeted on February 16. "Seems like I bubbled the remaining spaces for pros." The event runs May 29 to June 1 at the Aria Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. Play will start with seven seven-handed tables and the final seven players will all cash. The winner walks away with $5,000,000.
  8. In his acceptance speechon Saturday for his 14th World Series of Poker bracelet, Phil Hellmuth thanked his sponsors. He thanked Ariaspecifically for "sponsoring me and taking really good care of me" and went on to thank other sponsors in general. Perhaps a bit surprisingly, Twitter erupted. --- 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. --- It all started with Olivier livb112 Busquet, who said on Twitter, "Did this guy really just thank his sponsor?" He added, "I found it inappropriate and disrespectful to use that moment/opportunity to make a shrewd business decision." Matt Glantz immediately responded with, "I find it odd that u wear a Free Palestine or Save Israel t-shirt on a TV table but Phil can't thank his sponsor... Phil thanking his sponsor can only help the possibility of some other poor schmuck getting a sponsorship in poker." Scott Seiver was another player who weighed in, saying, "Olivier(pictured), I'm so confused. That is so normal for sponsored athletes. There is nothing wrong with it whatsoever." Darryl DFish Fish also opined, asking, "If Nike offered you a sponsorship contingent on you plugging them in speeches, you wouldn't do it?" Glantz then added, "Would be weird for an NBA broadcaster to admonish Lebron James for thanking Nike after winning the championship." We'll see if that happens soon enough. Bryan Davilapromptly posted a picture of Busquet rocking a Full Tilt hat and shirt with a big smile on his face. The caption: "You look awfully happy plugging the man." Zing! Kevin KevmathMathers referenced an acceptance speech 12 years ago by Prahlad Friedman: "Prahlad Friedman giving his views about the war in Iraq after winning a bracelet in 2003." Mathers added, "Not that I can get into someone's thought process, but assume Olivier would feel the same if Negreanu thanked Stars?" And yes, Twitter erupted because Hellmuth mentioned Aria in an acceptance speech. Now we've seen everything. 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.
  9. Short deck hold'em continues to grow in popularity, both in cash game and tournament format. This summer, the World Series of Poker added a $10,000 buy-in short deck hold'em event to its schedule of gold bracelet events, plus a handful of other venues around town are including the game in their summer offerings. Here are where and when you can play short deck hold’em in Las Vegas this summer. Short Deck Hold'em Events in Vegas This Summer Date Time (PT) Venue Buy-In Guarantee 6/1 2 p.m. Planet Hollywood $200 None 6/1 6 p.m. The Orleans $200 $20,000 6/2 6 p.m. World Series of Poker $10,000 None 6/5 7 p.m. ARIA $240 None 6/14 11 a.m. Golden Nugget $250 $5,000 6/20 10 a.m. Golden Nugget $360 $5,000 In addition to the tournaments listed in the table above, players may be able to find short deck hold'em cash games around Las Vegas this summer. One venue that is open to spreading it is ARIA Resort & Casino, who said they would be open to dealing the game at any limit they have in place for regular no-limit hold'em. What Is Short Deck Hold’em and How Do You Play? Also known as "six-plus hold’em," short deck hold'em is the new game in town that's quickly risen in the ranks of popularity. Players such as Phil Ivey, Tom Dwan, and Jason Koon are playing the game for astronomical stakes throughout Asia, and it's coming to the WSOP for the first time ever in 2019. Compared to regular no-limit hold'em, short deck hold'em is still extremely young and, therefore, not as widely known. Its rise in popularity has it almost on par with pot-limit Omaha. So, how does one play short deck hold'em? Short deck hold'em plays just like regular no-limit hold'em. Everyone is dealt two cards and there is a flop, turn, and river, with betting action taking place preflop and after each street of community cards. Also just like hold'em, players use their two hole cards combined with the five community cards on the board to make the best five-card poker hand. The deck being played with is different, though, and this is the first major difference between short deck hold'em and regular hold'em. Instead of the normal 52 cards that make up your regular poker deck, a deck used for short deck hold'em is only made up of 36 cards. Removed from the deck to cut it from 52 to 36 are the twos, threes, fours, and fives, hence the alternate name "six-plus hold’em." An ace remains a two-way card that can be used as both a high card and a low card. The second major difference is how the hands are ranked. It's become commonplace that flushes rank ahead of full houses in short deck hold'em. Some rules allow for three of a kind to beat straights, as well, but this is not the case for the $10,000 Short Deck tournament at the 2019 WSOP. Due to the shorter deck that's used in short deck hold'em, the odds for making certain hands change. It's easier to make a full house than it is a flush, which is why flushes rank higher than full houses in short deck hold'em. Below is a table of the most commonly used hand ranking system for short deck hold’em. Short Deck Hold'em Hand Rankings Royal Flush Straight Flush Four of a Kind Flush Full House Straight Three of a Kind Two Pair One Pair High Card Preflop, both blind and ante structures have been used for short deck hold'em.When blinds are used, the two players to the left of the button post the small blind and big blind, just as they would in regular hold'em, but some short deck hold'em games are played ante-only with no blinds.
  10. It's not every day that a $300,000 buy-in poker tournament comes along. It's one thing to play with your friends around the kitchen table for pizza money, but it's a whole different animal competing for an estimated $5 million first place prize. Oh, and there's a shot clock. On Thursday, Poker Central, Poker PROductions, and Aria Las Vegas announced the return of the Super High Roller Bowl. As Clint Stinchcomb, CEO of Poker Central, put it, "There are few poker events that can change the landscape of the game overnight – the Super High Roller Bowl is one of them. The 2016 Super High Roller Bowl will be even more exciting than last year's." It starts on May 29 at 2:00pm local time and runs through June 1. The top eight all-time tournament money-earners are scheduled to be in attendance, according to Super High Roller Bowl officials, including the likes of Daniel Negreanu and Phil Hellmuth. The tournament is capped at 49 players and is expected to sell out. Aria will begin accepting non-refundable $30,000 deposits on January 22. If the Super High Roller Bowl maxes out, it'll mean a $15 million prize pool and $5 million to first place after an extra $300,000 is added to the pot by sponsors. Aria has reserved 14 seats for its own high-rollers, leaving 35 seats for the general public. As such, Stinchcomb and company expect the 2016 Super High Roller Bowl to sell out rather quickly. Anyone age 21 or over is welcome to buy in; it's not an invitation-only field. Here are the projected payouts, assuming a field of 49: 1st place: $5,000,000 2nd place: $3,500,000 3rd place: $2,400,000 4th place: $1,600,000 5th place: $1,100,000 6th place: $800,000 7th place: $600,000 Poker PROductions will once again produce the event. Its president, Mori Eskandani, relayed, "Like last year, this prestigious tournament is bound to be one of the most talked-about events of 2016. We are excited to return to produce this live event." The final day of the Super High Roller Bowl (June 1) is also the opening day of the 2016 World Series of Poker, also in Las Vegas. Cash games at the Rio for the WSOP actually begin on May 31, but Day 1A of the Colossus II and the Casino Employees Event kick off on June 1. Down the Las Vegas Strip, the action at Aria will be dealt seven-handed. As such, if the Super High Roller Bowl sells out, seven tables of seven players each will be seated when it begins. 2015 marked the first running of the Super High Roller Bowl. It had a $500,000 buy-in last year and attracted a field of 43 players. Brian 'tsarrast' Rasttook it down for $7.5 million, defeating Scott Seiver heads-up for his fourth seven-figure score. The top six finishers in the 2015 Super High Roller Bowl all earned over a million bucks and the action was beamed to Americans on the NBC Sports Network. Rast won a $25,000 satellite to qualify, making his win all the more improbable. [caption width="521"] Brian Rast won the 2015 Super High Roller Bowl[/caption] This time around, players will start with 300,000 in tournament chips and blinds of 600-1,200-200. Each level lasts 75 minutes and there's a 10-minute break following each one. See the full structure here. The 2016 Super High Roller Bowl will feature a 40-second shot clock with five one-minute time banks each day. Seven levels will be played on Day 1 and Day 2; the field whittles down to a final table on Day 3.
  11. The Venetian and Wynn continue to trot out quality fields and huge guarantees. In the past week, Wynn held their largest event to date as part of the Wynn Summer Classic and The Venetian made headlines for some controversy at their recent live streamed final table. Strong Final Table Ends with Asterisk The highest buy-in to take place outside of the Rio this summer in a non-high roller event brought 178 entrants to The Venetian. The $5,000 $1 million guaranteed Mid-States Poker Tour event produced as good of a final table as live stream viewers could ask for. Alex Foxen, Kristen Bicknell, Kahle Burns, and Jake Schindler headlined the event and all but Schindler were among the final three. After declining a chop deal with the couple of Bicknell and Foxen, Burns lost and earned a $120,000 bronze medal. England's Conor '1_conor_b_1' Beresford delivered fifth place and his largest cash of the summer. Foxen and Bicknell immediately chopped afterward and Foxen took home the trophy along with $239,000. Bicknell earned a quality $200,000 score. Accusations of soft-play and potential collusion filled the social media space during and after the event. The live stream indicated no blatant chip-dumping but the attention stays on that side of the aisle. Another six-figure was produced at The Venetian in the past week as Ben Jones won the $1,600 Six-Max $750,000 guarantee event outright. Jones beat Alexander Lakhov heads up to claim the $193,468 first-place prize. Lakhov settled for $109,138. David Jackson and Kevin Saul both made the final table while Jessica Dawley and Mike Del Vecchio placed at the final two tables. Wynn Brings in the Masses The first multi-day event of the Wynn Summer Classic attracted 2,427 runners for the $1,100 $1 million guarantee. 251 players made the money and top two prizes were chopped between Kwun Li and Dominic Coombe. The pair earned $280,594 and $266,639, respectively, for their two days of play. Coming in third was past MSPT Venetian champion Thomas Boivin. In June 2016, the Belgian outlasted a field of 2,887 to chop with Mukul Pahuja and earn $352,153. This time around, Boivin cashes out for $149,961. Ian O'Hara and Upeshka De Silva are among the other final tablists. The Wynn's schedule lists one more $1,100 $1 million event starting on June 26 with three starting flights available. ARIA 8-Game High Roller Ends in a Deal The $50,000 Poker Players Championship is the highest buy-in mixed game event on the schedule but ARIA added a matching event of their own for 2018. The $25,000 8-Game mix on June 14 attracted 30 entrants and featured quite a few players who entered the PPC the next day. Phillip Sternheimer and 2017 PPC winner Elior Sion chopped for $275,000 and $220,000 at a final table that included Luke Schwartz, Isaac Haxton, and Alexander Kostritsyn. All five players rolled over their cash into the PPC but none made the money in the year's pinnacle mixed event.
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