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Found 16 results

  1. The notion of a poker hand representing a poker player is not a new one. For decades, ten-deuce has been known as the ‘Texas Dolly’. So-called after Doyle Brunson, the hand struck notoriety thanks to being the winning hand in back-to-back World Series of Poker Main Events in 1976 and 1977. Last week, Phil Hellmuth’s queen-four call for his tournament life - and subsequent suck-out success - went viral. Playing against Alex Foxen in the 2022 U.S. Poker Open, the so-called ‘Poker Brat’ become associated with the hole cards around the world... but how long will that last? From Will Smith-related memes to Hellmuth’s own reaction to the hand, how has a week in the spotlight given queen-four off the unlikeliest of popularity boosts? The Hand Takes Place Whichever way you look at it, Alex Foxen and Phil Hellmuth played out one of the most virally viewed poker hands in history on PokerGO during the 2022 U.S. Poker Open. With both men in the running for not only the Event title but the leaderboard victory at that stage, Foxen saw Hellmuth’s three-bet and four-bet enough to set the Poker Brat all in with a call. Hellmuth weighed things up as co-commentator Brent Hanks, working alongside Jeff Platt in the PokerGO booth, stated what every viewer was feeling. “This a guy who can dodge bullets but can’t get away from queen-four? I am shocked that he’s taking time making this decision. It is not a decision.” It was, however, and as Hellmuth declared ‘I guess I better play to win.” He put in his remaining chips, deciding not to leave himself with nine big blinds. Of course, a queen came on the flop and to add insult to injury, another queen on the river gave Hellmuth the crucial double-up. No nines arrived across the board left Foxen perplexed, and he shot a look of wonderment slowly around the PokerGO Studio. “What did we just witness? What the heck was that?” said Hanks. The whole world was about to provide a different answer to that question. Poker Twitter Blows Up No sooner had the hand played out were PokerGO themselves sharing what has become one of the most popular poker hands in living memory for people to watch. Quotes, retweets, likes and engagements alone sent the hand around the globe faster than you could locate your push-fold charts to prove the call 'wrong'. https://twitter.com/PokerGO/status/1507474159030321155 Some of the comments on Poker Twitter have predictably been brilliant. “I swear the next time I'm dealt a [queen-four], I am shoving my chips in,” said one Poker Brat fan. “Instead of calling for my 'one time' I will announce ‘For Phil!’”. Many Hellmuth supporters came out in defense not only of their man but the hand itself. “I secretly love [queen-four],” one said. “It's my oddball hand.” Another represented many dozens with their assertion that: “From here on out, the queen-four will be known as ‘The Hellmuth’ or ‘The Brat’ People will be playing it like the [seven-deuce] game. Poker rooms across America will be talking about the hand!” They already were. The Memes Take Over From the moment the clip was shot out of the PokerGO social media cannon, the poker circus that exists online was in raptures. Max Pescatori hinted that an element of jealousy would waft through high roller games everywhere https://twitter.com/maxpescatori/status/1507533575054409733 Hellmuth himself shared the effect that the internet had enjoyed having on queen-four. https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1507669423636692997 Plenty of fans were on Hellmuth’s side, and more than happy to show this runaway train of a meme subject would not be stopped by anything in its way. https://twitter.com/FPLFledgling/status/1507831077762736128 When Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Academy Awards in Los Angeles, Poker Twitter moved at speed to appropriate the action to Hellmuth’s hand. https://twitter.com/jsmith84poker/status/1508287597067468804 While intelligent debate was thin on the ground, that didn’t mean the very best couldn’t parody it, and Phil Galfond’s post was a thing of beauty and a joy forever. https://twitter.com/PhilGalfond/status/1507837664216567808 Hellmuth even shared an amended hand ranking chart, giving new power to this craziest of calling hands. https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1507667976891166720 Could ‘The Hellmuth’ Stand the Test of Time? One fan’s assertion that Johnny Chan could have prevented Hellmuth winning his iconic WSOP Main Event in 1989 really set the controls of the out of control juggernaut to ‘crazy’. “Your 1989 WSOP win showed up on my YouTube feed today,” they said. “Funny thing is if he played [queen-four] against your [pocket nines] he would have won. I think there's something magical about your hand.” Magical or not, Hellmuth didn’t win either the USPO event or any other event with the hand in question. So can it really stand the test of time? Eager to show that it might, the Poker Brat was on the road to a meet up game later in the week, and what would his first hand be? You’ve guessed it. https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1509035404581736452 There’s a 'Queen-Four' Facebook group, and before long, you just know there will be t-shirts. If the hand catches on at the World Series, then the memes will all come out for a second airing. Hellmuth himself, as is so often the case, seems in charge of the hand’s destiny. Doyle Brunson played ten-deuce in not one but two vital spots. Both times he won a WSOP Main Event as a direct result, but while Hellmuth may not have the opportunity to do so, what the Poker Brat has in 2022 is a much more powerful media machine to feed. If Phil Hellmuth makes a final table at the 2022 World Series of Poker, then the Poker Brat will be waiting for two hole cards in particular to go crazy with on a live stream. Setting aside the value he’s stacking up by less experienced hopefuls presuming he is playing queen-four along the way, Hellmuth should absolutely play it under the lights. If queen-four makes it to mainstream television, we might never hear the last of a hand that is living in the moment for far longer than anyone gave it the chance of doing. All in? You'd better believe it.
  2. The third episode of PokerGO’s latest season of High Stakes Poker continued to bring fans the nosebleed action they crave with Doyle Brunson showing off his skills over a multi-hand heater while Tom Dwan struggled to break out of his multi-episode downswing. The majority of the same cast that finished the last episode remained in play the start of the next hour. Phil Ivey, Jonathan Gibbs, Brunson, Jean-Robert Bellande, Dwan, and Patrik Antonius all sat in their same seats. Daniel Negreanu slid to the opposite side of the table with the notable absence of 2021 WSOP Main Event champ Koray Aldemir who racked up and exited in-between shows. Hot Start For Dwan After being on the losing end of a pair of six-figure flips in the first two episodes, Dwan was looking to build some momentum in order to claw back some of the chips currently sitting in other players’ stacks. Dwan started off by winning the first three hands of the night including a hand that played out like a session from when Dwan first burst onto the scene. Brunson put in a raise to $1,400 from middle position with the [poker card="ad"][poker card="td"] and Dwan, in the cutoff, made the call with the [poker card="jc"][poker card="2c"]. Antonius came along on the button holding [poker card="7d"][poker card="4d"] and Negreanu called from the small blind with his [poker card="6s"][poker card="6h"]. It was four ways to the [poker card="th"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2s"] flop and after Negreanu checked, Brunson fired $3,200 with top pair. Bottom pair was good enough for Dwan to call and both Antonius and Negreanu released their hands. The turn was [poker card="7s"] and Brunson checked it over to Dwan who took the lead and bet $8,000. Brunson made the call and the dealer put the [poker card="jd"] out on the river, improving Dwan to two pair. Brunson checked and Dwan value bet for $16,000. Brunson quickly called and was shown the winner by Dwan who dragged the $60,800 pot. DNegs Downs Dwan, Again Dwan’s resurgence was short-lived, however. On the very next hand, Dwan and Negreanu clashed again resulting in Dwan shipping another six-figure pot in Kid Poker’s directions. Dwan open-limped the $400 from early position holding [poker card="ac"][poker card="js"], bringing a raise from Antonius to $2,000 with the [poker card="ts"][poker card="8s"]. Negreanu was next to act and he flatted with [poker card="ks"][poker card="kh"]. Bellande tried to get in on the action from the big blind by calling with his [poker card="ad"][poker card="5d"] but Dwan limp-reraised to $14,000. After Antonius let his hand go, Negreanu sat stoically for a few moments before announcing a four-bet to $32,000. Dwan shot Negreanu a couple of quick glances while shuffling some of the $120,000 in chips he still had in his stack. Eventually, Dwan made the call and the flop came [poker card="jd"][poker card="tc"][poker card="4h"] giving Dwan top pair and setting him up for trouble. Dwan checked to Negreanu who when for a $20,000 bet. The pot was $88,000 at this point and Dwan had just over $100,000 behind when he announced he was all-in. Negreanu didn’t take but a second before grabbing a stack of yellow $1K chips and shoving them in the middle to call. Once again, the pair ran it twice. The first board was completed with the [qh turn and][poker card="4c"] river. The second board ran out the [poker card="qs"] turn and [poker card="7s"] river and Negreanu, who is known for having a tough time on HSP, took down another monster pot, this time it was good for $272,600. As Dwan reloaded for another $100,000, Negreanu and Ivey started chatting. “You having some fun, you enjoying yourself?” Ivey asked Negreanu who couldn’t hold back his glee from winning. “Didn’t you say one time I’m the worst winner ever,” Negreanu replied. “Pretty bad winner, yea,” Ivey joked back. “I can’t help but giggle when I win a pot,” Negreanu said, clearly enjoying sitting on a stack of nearly $350,000. Jean-Robert Gets There The very next hand was the only other six-figure pot of the episode and once again Negreanu was involved. Negreanu put in a raise to $1,000 with the [poker card="ad"][poker card="qs"] as the conversation continued. After taking a verbal shot at Brunson, calling him “lousy winner” and “grumpy, grumpy, grumpy”, Bellande casually three-bet to $4,000 with his [poker card="kc"][poker card="qd"]. Back on Negreanu, he said “I’m running hot” as he splashed his chips in to complete the call. The [poker card="ac"][poker card="jh"][poker card="9s"] flop gave Negreanu top pair, but it was Bellande who was betting. When checked to, JRB fired $4,000 which Negreanu quickly called. The [poker card="4d"] on the turn changed nothing, and after Negreanu checked again, Bellande went for a large bet of $14,000 into the $16,800 pot. Again, Negreanu just called. Everything changed however on the [poker card="tc"] river, bringing in the gutshot straight for Bellande. Bellande overbet, throwing out $60,000. “That card might have saved me a lot of money,” Negreanu mused, audibly breaking down the hand. In the end, Negreanu made the correct laydown and the $104,800 pot (inflated by JRB’s final uncalled bet) was pushed to Bellande. Brunson Can’t Lose After that last hand, there were only 11 more hands shown in the episode. Doyle Bruson won six of them and chopped another one. Even if, by the show’s standard, the pots weren’t for major amounts of money, it was a long stretch where Brunson was in every pot, making all the right moves, and stacking up the chips. After five small wins, Brunson wanted to bump up the action and so he put on the straddle to $800. He turned to Bellande and gave him the old “um…Hello??” and Bellande noticed the $800 straddle was on and instantly made it $1,600 to go saying “Doyle, you don’t have to ask me twice.” Dwan was first to act and made it $5,000 to go with his [poker card="6s"][poker card="3s"], Negreanu joined in calling the $5K with the [poker card="qd"][poker card="9d"]. With $13,200 in the middle, Brunson, from the first straddle, looked down at [poker card="7s"][poker card="7h"] and made it $30,800 to continue. Bellande folded, Dwan quickly let his small suited gappers go, and Negreanu laughed as he surrendered as well. A big smile came across Texas Dolly’s face as he exposed his pocket sevens. “That’s how you feel it,” Antonius said. “That was pretty sweet there, Doyle,” Bellande said. “Still works at 88.” Brunson, Bellande, Negreanu, and Dwan all return for more High Stakes Poker action next Monday night at 8 p.m. ET, exclusively on PokerGO.
  3. It didn’t take long for the new season of High Stakes Poker on PokerGO to find its footing as the superstar lineup that includes Daniel Negreanu, Phil Ivey, Doyle Brunson, Patrick Antonius, and Tom Dwan took turns getting involved in massive pots early and often. It was a tough night to be a Dwan fan as the HSP legend found himself with the second-best hand time and time again during Episode 2 of Season 9. On the flip side, those looking for a glimpse of Ivey, who hardly made a sound in the first episode, enjoyed him making his presence felt by getting more involved in the show. Speaking of getting involved, this week featured the arrival of Jean-Robert Bellande, as the HSP favorite made his way onto the set and quickly broke the silence with his patented table talk. Ivey Picks Off Dwan After an early position raise to $1,200 from Dwan holding [poker card="qs"][poker card="ts"], Ivey called from the button with his [poker card="ah"][poker card="9h"]. Professional online slots player from Sweden, Kim Hultman came along from the small blind with the [poker card="jh"][poker card="td"], but Koray Aldemir let go of his big blind. The [poker card="ks"][poker card="9s"][poker card="4c"] flop offered Dwan a straight flush draw, Hultman a gutshot straight draw as well, and Ivey middle pair. Hultman checked to Dwan who bet $2,000, and both Ivey and Hultman made the call. The turn was the [poker card="ad"], giving two pair, but it was Dwan who kept betting. Dwan fired another $8,000 and this time, just Ivey called. The [poker card="ac"] river gave Ivey a full house and Dwan, left with a busted flush draw checked it over to Ivey who put out a bet of $25,000. Dwan shot a look skyward and folded sending the pot of more than $51,000 over to Ivey. Bellande Makes It Look Easy Just a few more hands into the episode, James Bord, who doubled up through Tom Dwan on the premiere, collected his chips and made way for Jean-Robert Bellande. Bellande, a regular in the Las Vegas high-stakes home games, gave Brunson a fist bump, took a seat, and found himself immediately in action. Dwan opened to $1,200 from under the gun with his [poker card="as"][poker card="qc"] and it folded all the way back to Bellande in the big blind with the [poker card="jh"][poker card="8s"] and the newcomer made the call. The flop came [poker card="qh"][poker card="ts"][poker card="3h"] putting Dwan in the lead with top pair, but Bellande had a gutshot straight draw and a backdoor flush draw. Bellande checked it over to Dwan who bet $2,000, which Bellande called. The turn came the [poker card="9c"], turning the tables and giving Bellande the straight. He checked it over to Dwan, who was drawing dead, who made it $5,000 to go. Bellande didn’t take long before making it $16,000. Dwan made the call and the river came the [poker card="qs"], giving Dwan trips. Bellande targeted exactly that, overbetting the pot for $51,000. Dwan seemingly sussed it out, and laid it down giving Bellande an early boost to his stack with the pot of $90,000. Gibbs Gets There Right after that hand, Hultman announced he was done for the day and racked up to make room for Jonathan Gibbs. Like Bellande before him, Gibbs got involved right away, playing a big hand against Dwan. The straddle to $800 was on, and Dwan raised to $2,500 with the [poker card="8d"][poker card="6d"]. Gibbs three-bet to $4,300 with the [poker card="ad"][poker card="ks"] and when the action got back to Dwan he was the only one to make the call. The flop came [poker card="td"][poker card="5c"][poker card="3d"], missing both players but offering Dwan a flush draw. Dwan checked it over to Gibbs who slid out a continuation bet of $9,000. Dwan made the call and the dealer put out the [poker card="7s"] on the turn, giving Dwan even more outs. Dwan checked it again, this time Gibbs checked back. The river was the [poker card="kh"], giving Gibbs top pair, but it was Dwan who was looking to bet. Dwan fired $16,000 and was snapped off by Gibbs and his ace-king. Once again, Dwan was shipping chips as Gibbs collected just over $60,000. More Rungood For JRB The first of three six-figure pots took place when Patrick Antonius put the straddle on to $800 and Ivey opened to $2,500 in early position with the [poker card="7d"][poker card="5d"]. It folded to Bellande holding [poker card="th"][poker card="td"] and he just called. Antonius woke up with the [poker card="as"][poker card="ks"] in the straddle and three-bet to $10,800. Ivey took a moment but ultimately let his small suited one-gapper go. Bellande, with over $200,000 in his stack, four-bet to $81,500 which was more than Antonius had behind. Antonius unceremoniously made the call and the pair decided to run it twice for the $166,300 pot. They watched as the dealer put out the [poker card="kc"][poker card="9h"][poker card="8h"] as the flop for the first board, putting Antonius way ahead for at least half the pot. The [poker card="3s"] hit the turn but the river came the [poker card="ts"] improving Bellande to a set and locking up the first half of the pot for him. The second board of [poker card="7c"][poker card="6h"][poker card="4h"][poker card="8d"][poker card="qc"] was just as good for Bellande who scooped the entire pot leaving a frustrated Antonius looking for a rebuy. Daniel Downs Durr The High Stakes Poker troubles continued for Dwan when he and Negreanu got involved in the biggest pot of the episode. The straddle to $800 was on. From early position, Aldemir made it $2,100 to go with his [poker card="7s"][poker card="7d"]. When the action reached Dwan, he flatted with his [poker card="as"][poker card="kh"]. Antonius folded and Negreanu looked down at the [poker card="8s"][poker card="8d"] and put in a chunky three-bet to $12,700. Aldemir quickly counted his own stack and looked like he was thinking about calling, but ultimately he laid his pocket sevens down. When the action returned to Dwan, he took a few moments before grabbing the $50K stack of cash and announcing that he was all-in for roughly $168K. Negreanu shrugged, took just a second, and slapped a stack of yellow $1K chips in the middle to indicate a call. Like the hand before, the players agreed to run it twice. The [poker card="ks"][poker card="9c"][poker card="3c"] flop gave Dwan top pair and, like Antonius on the last hand, put him in solid position to take down at least half the pot. Negreanu began to move all his money in the middle when the dealer put out the [poker card="8h"] on the turn, giving Kid Poker a set. Negreanu pulled his cash back as the [poker card="kc"] completed the board. With two of Dwan’s six outs burnt on the last board, there was little drama when the second board came [poker card="7c"][poker card="5d"][poker card="5h"][poker card="5c"][poker card="6h"]. Dwan took another massive hit, doubling up Daniel who dragged the $228,100 pot. Ivey Closes The Show The final hand of the session was another six-figure clash. This time it was between Ivey and Negreanu. Ivey opened to $1,200 with his [poker card="qd"][poker card="td"] and Brunson made the call in middle position with the [poker card="ad"][poker card="7d"]. Negreanu made the call in the big blind with the [poker card="6s"][poker card="6c"] and it was three ways to a flop of [poker card="kd"][poker card="5d"][poker card="5h"]. Negreanu checked and Ivey continued for $2,500 which Brunson called. Negreanu then check-raised to $7,500. Ivey didn’t take long before sliding out a $5K call, but Brunson, with the superior flush draw, made the laydown. The turn was the [poker card="js"], keeping Negreanu’s pocket sixes slightly ahead and giving Ivey an open-ended straight draw to go with his flush draw. Negreanu fired $12,500 and Ivey, going nowhere, put in the call. The river was the [poker card="8d"] giving Ivey the flush but Negreanu, first to act, fanned out a bet of $36,000. Ivey double-checked his cards and counted out a call and stuck it in the middle, good for a $118.700 pickup to end the episode. High Stakes Poker continues every Monday Night for the next 12 weeks, exclusively on PokerGO.
  4. The wait is officially over for all-new episodes of High Stakes Poker as the opening hour of Season 9 premiered on PokerGO on Monday night. It brought nearly everything that fans love about the show - the biggest stars, the highest stakes, and even $50,000 bricks of cash right there on the table. However, the first episode, while entertaining, was more of a reintroduction as to what HSP could be. The cast, a high-powered lineup that featured Phil Ivey, Tom Dwan, Doyle Brunson, Patrik Antonius, 2021 WSOP Main Event Champion Koray Aldemir, James Bord, Kim Hultman, and Daniel Negreanu spent most of the episode feeling out the table out as opposed to lighting it up. There were some clashes, a couple of healthy pots, and a big bluff by Negreanu but for the most part, commentators Gabe Kaplan and A.J. Benza seemed to be waiting in anticipation for something jaw-dropping to take place. But while they were, some pretty fun hands were played. Dwan Gets It In Early The biggest pot of the night took place on the show’s third hand. After Brunson opened the pot to $1,200 with his [poker card="ah"][poker card="td"], Bord flatted holding the [poker card="qs"][poker card="qh"]. Dwan, on the button, picked up [poker card="as"][poker card="kc"] and bumped it up to $5,500. It folded back to Brunson who let his hand go and Bord quickly put in a chunky four-bet to $25,000. Dwan, with $93K behind, took some time but eventually moved all in. Bord quickly called and the duo were flipping for a pot of $192,600. They agreed to run it twice and Bord’s queens held through both runouts. The first [poker card="8h"][poker card="3s"][poker card="2c"][poker card="9d"][poker card="qd"], Bord spiked a set on the river. On the next board, he flopped a full house on a [poker card="qc"][poker card="tc"][poker card="th"] flop, which stood up through the turn and river, making Bord one the night’s biggest winners. Negreanu Makes Moves On The River Negreanu, who had won a small pot earlier in the night, played a big hand against Kim Hultman - a Swedish YouTube streamer whose “Let’sGiveItASpin” channel focuses on casino games. Negreanu opened to $1,600 in early position with the [poker card="6d"][poker card="4d"] and Hultman flatted on the button with his [poker card="qc"][poker card="js"]. Brunson completed in the big blind holding the [poker card="9h"][poker card="8s"] and the three took a flop of [poker card="ts"][poker card="9s"][poker card="6s"]. After Brunson checked his middle pair, Negreanu, with bottom pair, made a bet of $1,500. Hultman, open-ended with the jack-high flush draw flatted as did Brunson. The turn was the [poker card="as"], bringing in Hultman’s flush. Brunson checked again and Negreanu didn’t slow down, firing $5,500 into the pot. Hultman again called but Brunson released his hand. The river was the “inconsequential” [poker card="6h"], giving Negreanu trips but Kid Poker's hand was still second best. Kaplan then said “When world-class players smell weakness, they act on it.” and that’s exactly what Negreanu did, overbetting the $21,900 pot with a bet of $36,000. Hultman, with $72,000 behind, smiled but was viably uncomfortable. Eventually, the Swede let it go and Negreanu dragged the pot, his second of the night. Rough River For The Champ The very next hand saw Antonius battle against Aldemir, who was making his HSP debut after his WSOP Main Event victory. Aldemir opened to $1,000 holding the [poker card="ad"][poker card="jc"]. Antonius, who had been the most aggressive player during the first episode, put in a three-bet to $4,000 with his [poker card="kc"][poker card="qc"]. Negreanu let go of pocket fives, sending the action back to Aldemir, who made the call. The flop came [poker card="js"][poker card="th"][poker card="2s"], giving Aldemir top pair and Antonius a straight draw to go with his two overs. Aldemir checked it over and Antonius slid out $6,000, which Aldemir called. The turn was the [poker card="9d"], giving Antonius the nuts. Aldemir checked it over again and this time, Antonius checked it back. The river [poker card="ah"] was a bit of a disaster for the Main Event champ, and after he checked it over to Antonius, Aldemir was faced with a $30,000 overbet. But having rivered two pair, Aldemir couldn’t get away and made a quick call sending the $80,800 pot over to Antonius. Ivey Gets Involved A stoic Ivey spent the better part of the episode folding marginal hands and staying out of the action. As the episode was winding down Ivey finally found his spot. He open-raised to $1,200 with the [poker card="2s"][poker card="2d"] only to be three-bet by Hultman who made it $5,500 to go with his [poker card="kd"][poker card="th"]. Ivey shot Hultman a glance and tossed out a call. The flop came [poker card="ks"][poker card="7h"][poker card="6h"] and Ivey checked it over to Hultman, who opted to check back his top pair. The turn, however, was the [poker card="2c"], improving Ivey to a set and he didn’t waste any time trying to build a pot, betting $8,000. Hultman made the call and the pair watched as the [poker card="9s"] completed the board. As seen many times in this episode, a river overbet came as Ivey bet $30,000 into the $28,000 pot. Once again, Hultman was in the blender, but unlike his hand against Negreanu, Hultman made the call and was shown the set. A pained look stretched across Hultman’s face before he said “Nice hand, Phil” and watched Ivey drag the $88,000 pot. Of the 13 hands shown on the episode, Brunson led the pack, dragging four pots. Bord scored the biggest single-hand win in his $192,600 flip against Dwan and Aldemir was the only player not to win a hand. The High Stakes Poker action continues every Monday for the next 13 weeks, exclusively on PokerGO. *** Don't miss out on the High Stakes Poker action on PokerGO! Sign up for a subscription using promo code "SWEAT" and earn a free $20 into your PocketFives Staking account.***
  5. Daniel Negreanu, Phil Ivey, Doyle Brunson, Patrik Antonius, and Tom Dwan are just some of the poker superstars who will be featured when High Stakes Poker returns to the PokerGO airwaves beginning on Monday, February 21. Season 9 of the popular poker programming is shaping up to be one of its best with 14 consecutive episodes of non-stop action every Monday night at 5 p.m PT (8 p.m. ET). The game will play at nosebleed stakes ranging from $200/$400 up to $500/$1000. "Season 9 of High Stakes Poker is arguably the best season yet, and we cannot wait for poker fans to enjoy the game in its purest form at breathtaking stakes," said Mori Eskandani, President of PokerGO. "In addition to the star-studded lineups, fans will be pleased to see a revamped set that aims to capture the traditional authenticity of this legendary show and the return of $50,000 bricks of cash on the table." The stacks of cash aren't the only thing making a return as longtime HSP commentators Gabe Kaplan and AJ Benza will be back in the booth, calling all the high-stakes action. The sessions, which were filmed at the beginning of December 2021, will not only feature the mainstay players like Negreanu, Ivey, and Dwan, but will also have an injection of new blood including 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event champion Koray Aldemir, current leader of poker’s All-Time Money List Bryn Kenney, and high-stakes phenom Garrett Adelstein. Fan favorites Jean-Robert Bellande and Jennifer Tilly will also get in the game this season as revealed in prior social media posts. “Starting February 21, every Monday isn’t just poker night, it’s High Stakes Poker night,” Eskandani said. High Stakes Poker can be seen exclusively on PokerGO. New viewers who sign up for an annual subscription can use the promotional code “SWEAT” and not only get access to every episode of High Stakes Poker but will also get a free $20 deposited into their PocketFives Staking account to help them get started staking future live tournaments.
  6. PokerGO’s revival of High Stakes Poker is set to return in 2022 for Season 9 and over the weekend fans were given a first look at some of poker’s high-powered players that have officially locked up a seat in the game. https://twitter.com/RealKidPoker/status/1467256348643500035?s=20 After sitting on the sidelines for Season 8, Daniel Negreanu - who played in all of the first seven seasons of the show - confirmed his return to HSP via Twitter. Then, hours later, Jennifer Tilly posted one of the first cast photos, much to the delight of poker fans everywhere. RELATED: Chemistry Lessons: Building The Perfect High Stakes Poker Cast https://twitter.com/JenniferTilly/status/1467576251716018183?s=20 As you can see, some of the biggest names in the game will be in action including cash game legends Phil Ivey and Tom Dwan, both of whom were featured last season. Joining them in a return are Jean-Robert Bellande and Bryn Kenney, who made their High Stakes Poker debut in Season 8. Taking a seat for the first time and pictured to the right of Kenney is Hustler Casino Live regular Krish, who is often introduced as an entrepreneur and collector of rare casino chips. And finally, on the far left, is Garrett Adelstein, one of the most prolific live stream high-stakes cash game players of today. RELATED: Three Takeaways From Phil Ivey and Tom Dwan’s Appearance on Hustler Casino Live It’s Adelstein’s first invitation to High Stakes Poker but not his first encounter with the likes of Ivey and Dwan. Earlier this year, Hustler Casino Live broadcast two days of high-stakes play that featured all three players and captured on camera the first meeting of Adelstein and Ivey. However, that’s not the only members of the cast that were confirmed. Tilly commented on how much fun it was playing with Rail Heaven legend Patrik Antonius... https://twitter.com/JenniferTilly/status/1467173525244891136?s=20 ...and Xuan Liu was sure to snap a selfie with the legend Doyle Brunson. https://twitter.com/xxl23/status/1467208721168154627?s=20 On Monday night, World Series of Poker Main Event Champion Koray Aldemir added some more names to the High Stakes Poker confirmed list when he posted this photo of after his time on set. https://twitter.com/kooraay90/status/1468017193359069186?s=20 Traditionally, High Stakes Poker features minimum stakes of $200/$400 with an $800 straddle or simply $400/$800 blinds, making it one of the highest stakes cash games available for fans to sweat. Of course, all the players are sworn to secrecy on the results of the taping but it was curious that Negreanu, who has admitted in the past to running badly in his seven seasons (roughly a $2 million loser according to some calculations) posted the following: https://twitter.com/RealKidPoker/status/1467631154320662530?s=20 No firm date for the airing of High Stakes Poker Season 9 has been announced, but unconfirmed rumors has it dropping in February 2022. We’ll have to wait and see however, whenever it does return, High Stakes Poker Season 9 will be available on subscription site PokerGO. [original article updated 5:10 pm PT 12/6]
  7. Koray Aldemir, the 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event world champion, sits on top of the poker world this morning after the result of his career saw him win the $8 million top prize in the Las Vegas spectacular earlier today. Aldemir's The New Main Event Champ Since the moment Aldemir beat George Holmes in a stunning hand that you can read all about here, the poker world has reacted with overwhelming positivity to one of the most liked and well-respected poker peers in the game. The final three kicked off with Aldemir in a large amount of control, of course, but the focus wasn’t all on the players. Many observers felt that the final table chips being colored up so regularly denied everyone watching on TV the chance to see players push huge piles of the fun discs over the line. What’s the solution to the situation that has irked so many? https://twitter.com/AlexFungali/status/1461101741160734724 As yesterday’s final nine departed the Thunderdome, each one of them was naturally disappointed. A day on, each might have been reflecting on what winnings they have made rather than any imagine extra, and Chase Bianchi, who busted in ninth place for $1 million will have a fun callback to make to his landlord. https://twitter.com/Chase_Bianchi/status/1460600006801453062 As happens every year, when it gets down to the equity of a poker hand being worth millions, the final three players do slow down. Hey, every decision they make is priceless. Scott Seiver, an advocate on speeding up play in virtually every other event, came to the trio’s defense. https://twitter.com/scott_seiver/status/1461194881460629508 Sam Greenwood had to tip Aldemir for glory before the final table began, but wanted to make it clart ere was no comeback if it all went wrong. https://twitter.com/SamGreenwoodRIO/status/1460644748830646277 Erik Seidel also knows the winner of the Main, apparently for the first time in a long time. https://twitter.com/Erik_Seidel/status/1461043639954513920 Phil Hellmuth was on his way to making the final day of the $10,000 Razz Championship, but still had time for a Sit ‘N’ Go with Vince Vaugh and a few friends. https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1461097693615435782 Finally, Patrick Leonard is on WhatsApp terms with the new world champion and somehow managed to avoid a side bet on the Main Event. That’s why they call ‘Pads’ the sharpest tool in any box. https://twitter.com/padspoker/status/1460605744424828932 When the event was concluded, Aldemir’s dramatic win lived long in the memory of viewers worldwide as the German won $8 million for taking down the title and busting George Holmes heads-up after Jack Oliver had departed in third. WSOP 2021 Event #67 Main Event Final Table Results: Koray Aldemir - $8,000,000 George Holmes - $4,300,000 Jack Oliver - $3,000,000 Joshua Remitio - $2,300,000 Ozgur Secilmis - $1,800,000 Hye Park - $1,400,000 Alejandro Lococo - $1,225,000 Jareth East - $1,100,000 Chase Bianchi - $1,000,000 Himmelspach Takes $1,500 Freezeout The next bracelet winner on a busy day at the Rio felt was Chad Himmelspach, who won the $1,500-entry Event #75 Freezeout tournament after a heads-up victory against German player Stefan Reiser. It was when six players were left that Himmelspach started to make moves up the leaderboard, with a massive five-bet pre-flop leading to his eventual heads-up opponent Reiser open-folding pocket tens. When he eliminated Tarun Gulati in sixth place for $50,021 with his own [poker card="Th"][poker card="Tc"] holding against Gulati’s [poker card="As"][poker card="9s"], Himmelspach approached the top of the counts with 9.6 million chips. With the bust-out of Ori Hasson in fifth place for $66,447, Kaue De Souza vaulted himself up the leaderboard, [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ks"] able to get there against the Israeli player’s [poker card="7d"][poker card="7d"] across the [poker card="4s"][poker card="3d"][poker card="2d"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Jd"] board. The Brazilian, however, was the very next player to bust, dropping down the pecking order before a shove with [poker card="Ad"][poker card="9s"] against overnight leader Renmui Liu’s [poker card="Ac"][poker card="2h"] fell to a deuce on the river. Liu himself was out in third place for $121, 580, the first six-figure score of the tournament, when his short-stack shove with [poker card="Qd"][poker card="Jd"] was called by Himmelspach with [poker card="5c"][poker card="5d"] which held. That pot was a small one, but the eventual winner had built a healthy lead at the right time. With almost three times Reiser’s chips, Himmelspach saw the chip sway this way and that for over two hours until he was finally in a similar position of control. Himmelspach called his opponent’s shove, holding [poker card="8c"][poker card="8d"] and looking pleased to see Reiser had been shoving light with [poker card="9d"][poker card="3h"]. The board of [poker card="Th"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="4s"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="Ad"] saw the event end in the American’s favor, winning him a debut bracelet and the top prize of over a quarter of a million dollars in stunning fashion. WSOP 2021 Event #75 $1,500 Freezeout Final Table Results: Chad Himmelspach - $270,877 Stefan Reiser - $167,418 Renmei Liu - $121,580 Kaue De Souza - $89,344 Ori Hasson - $66,447 Tarun Gulati - $50,021 Nicholas Hubers - $38,121 Seth Evans - $29,416 Louison Vincent - $22,986 Joanello Scores First Bracelet In Fifty Stack The third and final bracelet of the day to be won came in the Fifty Stack finale in a more secluded corner of the Rio, where Paulo Joanello of Brazil won his first-ever bracelet and $321,917 in the process. The heads-up battle was, once again, an intriguing one as both Joanello and his opponent, Toby Price, were locked in battle for some time, before the former’s overpair survived the all-in on the flop by top pair holder Price. At a fast final table, perhaps the two biggest challengers in terms of know-how were Elio Fox and Scott Hall, but the pair bust in seventh and ninth place respectively. In the end, it was the Brazilian rail who celebrated, and wildly so, as the Rio erupted with a sound worthy of its namesake’s carnival attendees thousands of miles south of the world-famous poker venue in which their latest celebrated son won gold. WSOP 2021 Event #77 $1,500 Fifty Stack Final Table Results: Paulo Joanello - $321,917 Toby Price - $198,970 Martin Bicanik - $146,061 Ron Moisescu - $108,349 Roongsak Griffeth - $81,228 Axel Hallay - $61,550 Elio Fox - $47,145 David Morel - $36,508 Scott Hall - $28,585 Dzivielevski Leads $10K Razz Final Table The final day of the $10,000 Razz Championship is sure to be a thrilling one, with Yuri Dzivielevski (1,126,000) the chip leader and both Erik Seidel (227,000) and Phil Hellmuth (133,000) in the mix, albeit short-stacked. With the Brazilian chip leader’s closest challengers being Yehuda Buchalte (874,000) and John Monnette (861,000) there is class everywhere among the final 13 players. With Hellmuth firing for his 17th bracelet, an amount that would extend the Poker Brat’s current record amount of 16 wins, and Erik Seidel aiming to win his 10th bracelet, anything could happen on what is sure to be a tense and exciting final day. WSOP 2021 Event #78 $10,000 Razz Championship Final Day Chipcounts: Yuri Dzivielevski - 1,126,000 Yehuda Buchalte - 874,000 John Monnette - 861,000 Erik Sagstrom - 845,000 Roland Israelashvili - 647,000 Benny Glaser - 552,000 Shirley Rosario - 398,000 Brad Ruben - 316,000 Carlos Villamarin - 299,000 Everett Carlton - 231,000 Erik Seidel - 227,000 Phil Hellmuth - 133,000 Matt Vengrin - 54,000 Bounty Hunters Invade Poker Hall of Fame In the unique Event #79, the $1,979 Poker Hall of Fame Bounty event, just 71 players of the 469 who entered made the money places, with 63 staying through the end of the day. Top of the shop after Day 1 is Marc Rivera, with the Philippines player bagging up 721,000 chips by the end of the night. Elsewhere in the top 10 chip counts, Jerry Wong was second in chips (700,000), while Christian Pham sneaked into 10th place with 402,000. Other star names such as Maria Lampropulos (383,000), Ole Schemion (333,000), and Joao Vieira (75,000) all made the next day’s play, with plenty of bounties and big names missing out, as WSOP Master of Ceremonies Vince Vaughn - costing a $10,000 bounty - as well as Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Barry Greenstein, Scotty Nguyen, Barbara Enright, Linda Johnson, Tom McEvoy, Jack McClelland, Phil Hellmuth, and Eli Elezra, the latest Hall of Famer from 2021, made their exits. WSOP 2021 Event #79 $1,979 Poker Hall of Fame Bounty Top 10 Chipcounts: Marc Rivera - 721,000 Jerry Wong - 700,000 Payam Karami - 630,000 Eder Murata - 560,000 Laurent Polito - 486,000 Phil Scaletta - 462,000 Abhinav Iyer - 442,000 Sonia Shashikhina - 425,000 Michael Acevedo - 419,000 Christian Pham - 402,000 Chino Rheem In Top 5 of $3K Six Max Finally, Event #80 saw 10 hours of play conclude with just 122 players in seats and Ruslan Nazarenko in the lead with 616,500 chips. Closing in on the leader were Chino Rheem (500,000) and Maxx Coleman (496,000), with Uri Reichenstein (357,500) also making the top 10. With others such as Anatolii Zyrin (280,500) and Ali Imsirovic (268,500) both making the cut, others missed out, with Craig Varnell, David Williams, Chance Kornuth, Shaun Deeb, and 2019 champion from the event Alan Sternberg all hitting the rail. WSOP 2021 Event #80 $3,000 Six-Max PLO Top 10 Chipcounts: Ruslan Nazarenko - 616,500 Chino Rheem - 500,000 Maxx Coleman - 496,000 Steven Forman - 460,000 Michael Moncek - 445,500 James Mordue - 419,000 Joseph Haug - 358,500 Uri Reichenstein - 357,500 Michael Hudson - 334,500 Robert Emmerson - 316,500 And finally, as the World Series of Poker winds to a close over the next few days, players will be returning to countries all over the world to explain to friends, family, and complete strangers what it is they did all October and November. Good luck, all. https://twitter.com/Martin_Jacobson/status/1460701887599038464
  8. The 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event dominated the headlines at the series this week -and why shouldn’t it? It’s arguably the most exciting and prestigious tournament of the year and nearly every notable name in the game turns on their A-game in order to fight for the biggest prize in poker, the World Championship bracelet. Even the smallest details surrounding the Main Event turn into major headlines. Everything from who rode into the Rio to play to how much the Main Event is worth this year, all eyes in the poker world are fixed on nearly every bet, raise, and bustout. There were plenty of former World Champions in the house, plus a number of former #1-ranked PocketFivers all of which have their eye on the multi-million dollar prize. Let’s not waste any more time - here are the five biggest storylines from Week 6 of the World Series of Poker. $8 Million Up Top For 2021 Main Event Winner When all was said and done, from vaccination mandates to adding two additional starting flights the Main Event kicked off this week and the magic returned to the Rio for one last time. In total, a very respectable 6,650 players entered the $10,000 buy-in tournament. The total makes it the 10th largest field in Main Event history, a feat unto itself considering the conditions that the series has been under since Day 1. https://twitter.com/WSOP/status/1458623238133596160?s=20 The prize pool topped $62 million and 1,000 players will enjoy a piece of it. A min-cash gives a return of $15,000 and everyone at the final table will earn seven figures with the top prize coming in at $8,000,000. A hefty prize for sure, with the pressure being applied to the final three where there is a $1.3 million jump between third and second, and a massive $3.7 million difference between runner-up and champion. https://twitter.com/WSOP/status/1458633558038171648?s=20 Stars Show Up For Main Event The Main Event is an event unlike any other and one of the best part for fans is to see their favorite players compete in a massive field for one of the largest prize pools of the year. Even in the current conditions, this year is no different as the Rio was flooded with big name stars who made the journey to try and become the next World Champion. Former World Champions Chris Moneymaker, Joe Hachem, Scott Blumstein, Martin Jacobson, Qui Nguyen, and Phil Hellmuth are all making their presence felt. For Hellmuth, it was more about his antics than his on the felt play. https://twitter.com/GGPoker/status/1458297842569650180?s=20 Moneymaker, who has talked about working on his game over the past few years, is off to a fast start surging into the top 20 of the chip counts after Day 2. https://twitter.com/CMONEYMAKER/status/1458655860960411650?s=20 But of course, the list of big names who took a shot in the field doesn’t stop with former champs. Daniel Negreanu hit the rail early, as did Damian Salas, former #1s Calvin Anderson and Shaun Deeb, Nick Schulman, Brian Rast, Tony Dunst, Jason Somerville, and Michael Addamo among many others. https://twitter.com/PokerNews/status/1457849351758180354?s=20 But headed into Day 3, the list of notable names in the 2,362 remain plentiful. Those sitting inside the top 100 at the start of the day include Nick Petrangelo, Matt Glantz, David Williams, Tyler Cornell, Mustapha Kanit, Greg Mueller, Brian Altman, and Victor Ramdin. Jason Koon, Chance Kornuth, Robert Mizrachi, Anthony Zinno, Ben Yu, and Faraz Jaka all have plenty to work with. On the other end former #1 Niklas Astedt, Ole Schemion, Garry Gates, Griffin Benger, and Eli Elezra are among those with some chipping up to do, all sitting under 100k headed into the day. Last Ride For Texas Dolly (at the Rio) While he didn’t advance through to Day 3, fans were thrilled to get to watch the return of Doyle Brunson to play in his final Main Event at the Rio. Brunson was featured on the PokerGO broadcasts on two occasions, both Day 1 as well as his Day 2. H accumulated a nice stack, but ran into a couple of tough spots which ultimately found him eliminated on Day 2abd. https://twitter.com/PocketFives/status/1456381655686397969?s=20 https://twitter.com/TexDolly/status/1458544793684873219?s=20 Jungleman Comes Back To Win $50K PPC, Leng Confronts Error The final table of the $50,000 Poker Players Championship turned into an extra-hour affair as Dan ‘Jungleman’ Cates battled against Ryan Leng and Paul Volpe three-handed deep into the night, only to emerge with his first-ever WSOP gold bracelet, a spot on the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy, and the $954,020 first-place prize. Cates arrived with his hair dyed blue-green and in full Dragon Ball Z cosplay. That, along with his win, might have been the talk of the event but it was a critical hand in Limit Hold’em against Leng where Cates was down to his final bet, all-in with the worst hand, and on the verge of elimination. Leng, with top pair and getting incredible odds just needed to click call in order to eliminate him, but he found a fold instead and ‘Jungle’ scraped his way back and eventually took home the win. https://twitter.com/PokerGO/status/1457105513674645507?s=20 The next day, the fallout from the hand took over Poker Twitter and Ryan Leng had to deal with the fallout from, what Leng himself called a “terrible fold”. He did so head-on. Leng posted his thoughts in a lengthy Twitter thread (which you can read by clicking right here). In the end, Leng didn’t make excuses, he simply vowed to learn from it and continue to move on. For his part, despite giving Leng the needle at the table when he showed his hand, Cates came to Leng’s defense from the online critics of the fold. https://twitter.com/junglemandan/status/1457573583341776898?s=20 Leng still sits in the top 5 on the Player of the Year Leaderboard. Josh Arieh Stays Hot, Takes Over Player of the Year Race Speaking of the Player of the Year race, the new leader is Josh Arieh who added to his point totals this week with a final table appearance in Online Event #7 ($3,200 NLHE) in which he finished in fourth for another $96,049. That makes it two bracelet wins, a final table in the aforementioned $50,000 Poker Players Championship, and the online final table. He’s having the series of his career in terms of results, something he credits to being a strong place mentally and playing free. With a healthy lead in the POY race, but a there's lot of poker left to play in the WSOP ‘post-lims’, Arieh has said he’s ready to double down, sell some action on PocketFives, and make a run at having a banner draped at all future WSOP events. https://twitter.com/jeffplatt/status/1458617115175309315?s=20 Current POY Top 5 Josh Arieh - 3,110.91 Jake Schwartz - 2,757.37 Anthony Zinno - 2,731.32 Ryan Leng - 2,684.04 Kevin Gerhart - 2,643.23
  9. A busy day on both Day 1f and Day 2abd of the WSOP Main Event saw a wizard take his seat, several huge names power to the top of the leaderboard and the biggest single day of action in the Main for over two years. It was an incredible day of action as the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas played host to some of the world’s best poker players. Hellmuth Arrives in Style on Day 1f, Chips Up Before Close It’s impossible to start anywhere other than the grandest of entrances from the man famed for his exuberance at the World Series. Phil Hellmuth, a.k.a. The Poker Brat. Waiting until the end of the day, and playing only the final two levels, Hellmuth arrived shortly before the dinner break as, dressed head to toe in white as ‘Gandalf the White’, the 16-time bracelet winner was accompanied by 16 models - one for each bracelet, natch - two fighting characters from the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Dan ‘Jungleman’ Cates, who appeared to be Saruman from the Oscar-winning films. https://twitter.com/PokerGO/status/1458296604536967178 With the hoopla to one side, once Hellmuth sat down, he improved on his starting stack in no time at all, bagging up 94,500 with which to attack tomorrow’s Day 2cef. He wasn’t the only one taking part in Day 1f, with some legends of the felt playing the flight, such as Fedor Holz (161,600), Scotty Nguyen (52,200), Michael Mizrachi (212,300), and Chris Moneymaker (75,800), the 2003 WSOP Main Event winner who finally couldn’t resist the clarion call any longer. Elsewhere, players such as Liv Boeree played for the first time in a while, bagging up 90,000 after claiming not to ‘remember how to play’ after such a long time away from the felt. https://twitter.com/Liv_Boeree/status/1458166021412376578 The chip leader at the close of Day 1f was Adam Walton with a massive stack of 334,000 chips, but he had stellar company in the upper echelons of the leaderboard, with Michael Mizrachi (212,300), Henrik Hecklen (210,000) and Cate Hall (197,000) all bagging top 10 stacks. Others weren’t so fortunate, with players such as Justin Lapka, David Benyamine and Robert McMillan all falling by the wayside during the day’s play. WSOP 2021 Event #67 $10,000 Main Event Day 1f Top 10 Chipcounts: Adam Walton - 334,000 Tung Nguyen - 328,200 Hannes Speiser - 282,100 Arkadi Onikoul - 266,300 Ryan Hartmann - 243,200 Young Ko - 240,300 Jung Woo - 231,900 John Bagosy - 224,700 Christopher Fischer - 219,000 Terence Clee - 218,700 Day 2abd Sees Doyle Brunson Bust but Jason Koon Crush One of the biggest clashes on Day 2abd of the Main Event was the match-up between Doyle Brunson and Jason Koon. One is a classic poker legend and 10-time bracelet winner, the other has just signed for GGPoker and won his first-ever bracelet this series. Sadly for ‘Texas Dolly’ fans, only one would prevail and it was not to be the man in the cowboy hat, as fellow player Kyna England tweeted of her shock at a bizarre first Main Event experience. https://twitter.com/Kyna_CooL/status/1458222692767703046 Rameez Shahid (731,700) led the field after Day 2, but plenty of others with experience are chasing him down, with David Coleman (613,000), Johan Schumacher (597,000), Robert Cowen (596,400), Nick Petrangelo (490,200), Anton Wigg (490,000), Mustapha Kanit (473,300), Brittney Stout (394,900), and Kathy Liebert (285,500) amongst them. With 145 players choosing a Day 2 entry for the first time in the tournament’s half-century of history, that led to the field topping 6,500 with Day 2cef the last possible opportunity for players to put down $10,000 and battle for the legendary world champion’s WSOP bracelet. Plenty of big names were unsuccessful in their bid for poker immortality, with players such as Asi Moshe, Sam Grafton, Adam Friedman, Rep Porter, Maria Konnikova, Melanie Weisner, Kelly Minkin, Mikita Badziakouski, Jeff Gross and Kevin Martin all departing on Day 2abd. WSOP 2021 Event #67 $10,000 Main Event Day 2abd Top 10 Chipcounts: Shahid Rameez - 731,700 David Mock - 679,700 Damien Steel - 649,000 Farhad Jamasi - 635,000 Raul Martinez - 628,100 Steve Foutty - 620,000 Mitchell Halverson - 617,600 Scott Davies - 615,100 David Coleman - 613,500 Kayvon Shahbaz - 599,200 Shaun Deeb on the Hunt in Little One for One Drop Finally, on Day 1b of the $1,111-entry Little One for One Drop, 901 total entries were whittled down to just 297 survivors. The chip leader at the close of the second opening flight was Trent Wilt, who bagged up 516,200, but Wilt was followed by some big names armed with plenty of chips like David Tran (501,600), Seongmin Lee (461,700), Evgeni Toureusk (401,400), Quirin Heinz (386,100), Sam Cohen (270,000), Michael Acevedo (252,000), Shaun Deeb (85,000), and Bill Klein (68,000). Deeb is a particular player to watch as he goes for the Player of the Year title with a deep run in this event possibly crucial to that aim. With Day 1c being the final flight to take part in if players want to advance to Day 2, the total of 1,389 entries so far in this event could well be doubled. Players who busted on Day 1b included Pamela Balzano, Natalie Bromley, DJ Alexander, Asi Moshe and Kyna England WSOP 2021 Event #68 $1,111 Little One for One Drop Top 10 Chipcounts: Trent Wilt - 516,200 David Tran - 501,600 Seongmin Lee - 461,700 Evgeni Tourevski - 401,400 Quirin Heinz - 386,100 Jaspal Brar - 379,100 Ari Oxman - 376,400 Blerim Imeri - 332,400 Marco Damico - 316,000 Jonathan Ingalls - 312,800 Finally, he may have busted the Main Event, but for a while there, Landon Tice felt the same as the rest of us and achieved the peace of mind only grinding a short stack can inspire. https://twitter.com/LandonTice/status/1458332577811427328
  10. Not every staking deal is going to pan out, but in the case of this year’s 2021 World Series of Poker $50,000 Poker Players Championship, if you backed a player on PocketFives, you got straight up paid. Three of the best when it comes to mixed games posted packages - Daniel Negreanu, Josh Arieh, and Matt Glantz all battled their way into money in one of the WSOP's most prestigious events. Of the 63 runners, only 10 got paid and late (very late) on Day 3 of the five-day event, all three navigated the ups and downs of the money bubble. https://twitter.com/PocketFives/status/1455799199836999683?s=20 Negreanu, who found himself near the bottom of the chip counts multiple times as the field narrowed, put together a string of hands that sent his chip count soaring. And as the money bubble approached, Arieh was seen building a mountain of chips as he climbed into the top 3 on the leaderboard. Glantz, who sat to Arieh’s direct left for most of the night, also managed to find a bag at the end of the night. https://twitter.com/PocketFives/status/1456012324372815874?s=20 On Day 4, Negreanu could never really get anything going and made an untimely exit in ninth place for $91,595. Negreanu will take $68,696 of that to the bank but $22,898 is getting split up by his backers. That’s an 83.19% ROI for the more than 80 people who managed to get a piece of him. So, for each share of ~ $154 a return of roughly $282. After Negreanu busted, backers still had two players left to root for. Nick Schulman was the next to go, busting in eighth place and after he made his quick departure, the marathon began. https://twitter.com/PocketFives/status/1456026758638145540?s=20 He held on most of the day but six hours after the start of the 10-handed day, Glantz, who sold 22% of his action, fell in eighth place for $128,256 - an ROI of 156.51% and a handsome sum for his backers. Glantz himself will book just over $100,000 while his 69 backers will pull their percentages from the $28,216. If all 69 backers had an equal share, a $180 investment turned into a roughly $460 return. https://twitter.com/PocketFives/status/1456011019151495168?s=20 One can’t help but be impressed by Josh Arieh’s back-to-back final table runs in the Poker Players Championship. When the money bubble approached, Arieh was sitting with piles of chips which he carried into Day 4. However, his stack took a few notable hits and his tournament came to an end in sixth place for $161,422. “I’m very happy with the way I played, totally accept the result,” Arieh said after the tournament. For his backers, it was also another nice result. Earlier in the series, when Arieh won the $1,500 PLO event, his 10 backers turned $15 into more than $2,000. In this event, Arieh walked away with a healthy 222.84% ROI. He sold 30% of his action to 64 different backers bringing roughly $33,426 in profit for his investors. For each 1% (or $500) returned $1,614.20 or a $50 stake bringing back $161. Be on the lookout for more staking action, at both the 2021 WSOP and beyond… https://twitter.com/TexDolly/status/1456682550546481154?s=20
  11. Drama, excitement and Doyle Brunson. Poker fans had all their Christmases come at once on Thursday night as the ‘Godfather of Poker’ himself, ‘Texas Dolly’, made an appearance at the 2021 WSOP and sat down in the Main Event. On what was a dramatic opening day in many different ways, Brunson survived to battle again on Day 2. Doyle Brunson Takes The Main Event Stage It’s been many years since the 1976 and 1977 WSOP Main Event world champion sat down in the world’s biggest poker tournament. In fact, his appearance in the Super Seniors event earlier this series looked very much like a one-off. It transpired not to be, however, as Brunson sat down on Day 1a of the Main, with 522 other players putting down $10,000 to play in the one that every poker player on the planet wants to win. Fellow poker professional Felipe Ramos was beyond excited that a hero to him and millions of other poker players was in the building. https://twitter.com/FelipeMojave/status/1456420740027215872 A 10-time WSOP bracelet winner, Brunson escaped Day 1 with more than double the chips he started with, coming through the day in 41st place on 151,000 chips. That was less than half of the total amassed by the Day 1a chip leader Mustapha Kanit (363,500), who ended the day top of the leaderboard on which 348 survivors sat. Elsewhere in the top 10, Alex Livingston (319,200), Fabian Quoss (273,800) and Billy Baxter (248,600) totalled big numbers of over four times their initial stack, with other big names such as Adrian Mateos (212,500), Yuri Dzivielevski (197,200), Perry Friedman (195,500), JJ Liu (180,200), and the 1983 WSOP Main Event winner Tom McEvoy (96,900) all bagging up decent stacks. There was a moment of controversy during the opening day of the Main Event as police locked down the Rio amid a ‘situation’ during the evening, with an unrelated crime leading some of those who were on hand to serve and protect to step in and do just that. https://twitter.com/JohnnieVibes/status/1456478253711982592 It would appear that the man was in possession of a suspicious package, with British actor, poker pro and WSOP event runner-up Sam Razavi turning detective to solve the crime. https://twitter.com/Sam_Razavi/status/1456540017384329223 Among those to fall on Day 1a was the reigning world champion Damian Salas. The Argentinian busted in the first level after his [poker card="As"][poker card="Qc"] was all-in and at risk against Peter Gould’s [poker card="5s"][poker card="5s"], with the latter making a straight on the board of [poker card="9d"][poker card="8c"][poker card="3d"][poker card="7c"][poker card="6s"]. Others to fall at the first fence included Calvin Anderson, Upeshka De Silva, Dylan Weisman and Jake Schwartz, whose lead in the race to become 2021 WSOP Player of the Year took a big hit. WSOP 2021 Event #67 $10,000 Main Event Top 10 Chipcounts: Mustapha Kanit - 363,500 Rittie Chuaprasert - 345,700 Alex Livingston - 319,200 David Fong - 298,500 Fabian Quoss - 273,800 Billy Baxter - 248,600 Dragana Lim - 237,700 Vladimir Vasilyev - 232,000 Vidur Sethi - 226,200 Ayaz Mahmood - 221,200 Eric Zhang Wins Salute To Warriors Event #63, the Salute to Warriors, cost $500 to enter and concluded on Day 36 of the 2021 WSOP with Eric Zhang the champion for $102,465. With the USO receiving a charitable donation of over $64,000 from players’ buy-ins before the final table, Anthony Mccurdy was the first to bust the nine-handed final table, earning $9,857 when his [poker card="8c"][poker card="8d"] ran into Chulhan Choi’s [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Kd"] and was unable to overtake the cowboys on the gallop to the river with all the chips in pre-flop. Next to bust was Chris Corbo, who went in eighth for $12,471 when his [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Qc"] couldn’t catch Mitch Garshofsky’s [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ts"]. The ten-high board condemned Corbo to the rail and he was joined by Hlib Kovtunov, whose [Ah[poker card="5h"] couldn’t catch a card against Zhang’s [poker card="2c"][poker card="2s"], which made quads by the river to send the Ukrainian home in seventh for $15,943. When short-stacked Marty Zabib busted in sixth for $20,592 and was then followed by another shortie, Mitch Garshofsky, going in fifth for $26,866, just four remained, with Zhang making waves. So too was Bradley Rogoff, who busted Choi in fourth place for $35,406 when pocket tens survived against Choi’s pre-flop short-stack shove with [poker card="Qd"][poker card="9d"]. Rogoff couldn’t hang on, however, busting next himself for $47,125 when he shoved from the small blind with [poker card="Ad"][poker card="7d"] and was looked up by Guy Hadas in the big blind with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Qs"], a seven on the flop providing cruel hope for Rogoff, who saw a queen on the river dash his chances onto the rocks. Heads-up, Hadas still had work to do to overtake the dominant Zhang, who had 25.2 million to his opponent’s 15.6 million. Zhang, however, was not to be caught, and extended his lead before the final hand where his [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Jc"] was all he needed to call when Hadas shoved on the turn of a board showing [poker card="Qs"]Ts][poker card="2h"][poker card="Kh"]. Hadas had pushed with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="5h"], but could find neither straight nor flush on the [poker card="Ad"] river, which confirmed Zhang’s victory for $102,465 and his first WSOP bracelet in his first WSOP event of the series. WSOP 2021 Event #63 $500 Salute to Warriors Final Table Results: Eric Zhang - $102,465 Guy Hadas - $63,344 Bradley Rogoff - $47,125 Chulhan Choi - $35,406 Mitch Garshofsky - $26,866 Marty Zabib - $20,592 Hlib Kovtunov - $15,943 Christopher Corbo - $12,471 Anthony Mccurdy - $9,857 Mini Main Down To Five The Mini Main Event, which costs $1,000 to enter, saw its penultimate day take place on Thursday, as Greek player Georgios Sotiropoulos reached the final table with a huge chip lead. Piling up a whopping 105,550,000 chips, Sotiropoulos has more than double his nearest challenger Jordan Meltzer (39,000,075) and three times as many as Wataru Miyashita from Japan, who is third in chips with 35,900,000. Elsewhere in the final five, James Patterson (26,600,000) and James Rubinski (22,325,000) know that they have a lot of work to do to catch the runaway chip leader, who is the only man of the five to have won a WSOP bracelet before. In fact, Sotiropoulos has two in his past, and must now be a huge favorite to win a third tomorrow when the lights hit the Thunderdome felt. WSOP 2021 Event #65 $1,000 Mini Main Event Final Table Chipcounts: Georgios Sotiropoulos - 105,550,000 Jordan Meltzer - 39,000,075 Wataru Miyashita - 35,900,000 James Patterson - 26,600,000 James Rubinski - 22,325,000 Josh Arieh Cracks $10K PLO Top 10 Danny Chang is the chip leader with just 12 players remaining in the $10,000-entry PLO Hi-Lo 8 or Better, otherwise known as Event #66. Chang has a big lead, too, with 3,620,000 chips to his name, almost double those of Dan Colpoys, his fellow American and closest challenger. Elsewhere in the chipcounts, there is a strong spot for Josh Arieh, who bagged up 1,015,000 on the night, a shade under another 2021 WSOP bracelet winner in Russian player Anatolii Zyrin (1,155,000). With British mixed game player Adam Owen (955,000) and John Esposito (480,000) both in the field, it’s sure to be a dramatic and decisive final day in equal measure. WSOP 2021 Event #66 $10,000 PLO8 Championship Top 10 Chipcounts: Danny Chang - 3,620,000 Dan Colpoys - 2,040,000 Matt Woodward - 1,600,000 Anatolii Zyrin - 1,155,000 Josh Arieh - 1,015,000 Adam Owen - 955,000 Aaron Kupin - 500,000 John Esposito - 480,000 Alan Sternberg - 410,000 Jason Riesenberg - 360,000 Finally, we couldn’t let you go into the night without a look at what every poker player desires more than anything this Winter - the 2021 WSOP Main Event bracelet. https://twitter.com/WSOP/status/1456339540931592195
  12. Two more WSOP bracelets were won at the Rio on Sunday night as Ben Yu claimed his fourth gold bracelet of his career with a victory in the $10,000 NLHE Six-Handed for $721,453 and Robert McMillan perservered in Event #52, the Seniors Event, for his first-ever WSOP gold and $561,060 as he closed out a famous victory. Ben Yu Wins Fourth WSOP Bracelet Ben Yu won his fourth WSOP bracelet as he closed out the six-handed Event #56 in style, beating Nikita Kuznetsov heads-up to win $721,453. At an exciting final table, play kicked off between the final six players with Mike Sowers holding a big lead with 4.8 million chips to Kuznetsov’s 3.8 million. At that stage, Yu was the short stack, but he still had 49 big blinds to play with, and with WSOP victories in 2015, 2017, and 2018 to call on, he proved dogged enough to grab bracelet number four. The first player of the six to bust was former four-time WSOP bracelet winner Asi Moshe, with the Israeli going down with [poker card="Jd"][poker card="9d"] after his top pair on the flop was shot down by Sowers’ flush after his [poker card="As"][poker card="8s"] hit a flush on the river to win through and condemn Moshe to sixth and $97,660. With five players left, Sowers may have risen to chip leader, but Yu was making moves too, albeit in smaller pots. Steve Yea was busted in fifth place for $137,303 when all-in with [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Kd"] against Ariel Mantel’s [poker card="As"][poker card="Tc"], with all the chips going into the middle pre-flop. The board of [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Td"][poker card="8h"][poker card="6s"][poker card="6h"] sending Yea home and further boosting Sowers’s stack. Mantel was on a mission too, however, and a double-up through Sowers opened up the whole tournament. Yu grabbed some from Sowers too as sharks circled in the water. Sowers lost more chips either side of the dinner break and suddenly was out of the event, all-in with [poker card="Ac"][poker card="8s"] against Yu’s [poker card="Kd"][poker card="6d"] and delivered from the felt by a king on the river. Sowers had banked $198,205 for his deep run and Mantel had it even better when he cashed in third place for $293,578. After some perfectly timed aggression from Kuznetsov weakened Mantel’s stack, the latter was all-in with [poker card="Jd"][poker card="Js"]. Yu, by far the chip leader at this stage, called with [poker card="Kh"][poker card="7h"] and both he and his heads-up opponent watched in delight as the board of [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Qd"][poker card="4c"][poker card="7d"][poker card="9h"] busted the unfortunate Argentinian and send Kuznetsov into raptures. “My friend,” he exclaimed in the Thunderdome. “Russian people love you!” Heads-up, Yu had an almost unassailable lead, sitting with 16.8 million playing his Russian frenemy’s 2.8 million. While Kuznetsov had laddered, he could not manage a further ascent, and fell away when his [poker card="2s"][poker card="2c"] was shot down by Yu’s [poker card="Js"][poker card="Jh"], who had no little trouble holding through the sweaty [poker card="As"][poker card="Qh"][poker card="3h"][poker card="4d"][poker card="8d"] board. Yu’s victory, worth $721,453, gave him his fourth bracelet, with his Russian opponent winning $445,892 for coming second. WSOP 2021 Event #56 $10,000 Six-Handed NLHE Final Table Results: Ben Yu - $721,453 Nikita Kuznetsov - $445,892 Ariel Mantel - $293,578 Mike Sowers - $198,205 Steve Yea - $137,303 Asi Moshe - $97,660 McMillan Closes Out Emotional Seniors Victory When the nine-handed final table began, McMillan was one of the shortest stacks, sat on just 6 million chips, way behind Christopher Cummings, who had started the day as chip leader and continued that trend to the final table, sat behind 24.3 million as the action got underway. That lead had increased by the time that Daniel Lujano became the first player to bust, crashing out in ninth place for $58,425 when his shove with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="2s"] ran into Jonathan Ingalls with [poker card="Ad"][poker card="8s"] and couldn’t catch up. Next to go was Todd Hansen, who busted in eighth place for $73,873 when Ingalls again claimed another victim. This time, Ingalls had [poker card="Ts"][poker card="Tc"] and put his opponent all-in, with Hansen calling with [poker card="8s"][poker card="8d"] on a flop of [poker card="Kd"][poker card="6c"][poker card="3c"], but the turn [poker card="2c"] and river [poker card="2d"] couldn’t save Hansen. Ingalls was on the rise and he wasn’t the only one, with Dennis Jensen also chipping up, specifically at the expense of Louis Cheffy when he busted in seventh for $94,030. Cheffy shoved with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Ks"], but would need to hit as Jensen called with [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Qc"] and didn’t on the jack-high board. Despite those heroics, Jensen spent the next mini session watching the stack he’d worked so hard to accumulate disappear. On a board showing [poker card="Kc"][poker card="7c"][poker card="3d"][poker card="8d"], Jensen led out then called off Robert Davis’ all-in. Jensen was at risk with [poker card="Kh"][poker card="Tc"] for top pair on the flop, but he was behind Davis’ [poker card="7s"][poker card="3s"] and stayed there through the [poker card="2s"] river to bust in sixth for $120,484. In fifth place, it was the overnight chip leader Christopher Cummings who fell after the day got away from him and he cashed for $155,401 instead of playing for the title. Cummings moved all-in with [poker card="Jc"][poker card="Tc"] and was called by Daniel Stebbins with [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ad"]. The queen-high board provided no sweat for Cummings, who was drawing dead by the river. With four players left, Ingalls met with his exit as Davis claimed another scalp. This time, Davis had [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Th"] and Ingalls was all-in pre-flop and at risk with the dominated [poker card="Ks"][poker card="9s"]. The board of [poker card="Jc"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7c"][poker card="9d"][poker card="2d"] saw Ingalls hit his card on the turn only for it to provide his opponent with the winning straight as he crashed out in fourth place for $201,753. Three-handed, Davis had a big lead, sitting with 73 million chips to McMillan’s 21 million and Stebbins with just 14.2 million. That changed as Stebbins doubled through Davis with jacks holding against queen-ten suited and as play continued, the stacks evened up with each man grabbing the initiative at a different time. Stebbins it was who busted third for $263,640, but when he did so it was to the new chip leader in McMillan. Stebbins rivered a straight with [poker card="Th"][poker card="7h"] on a board of [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Js"][poker card="9c"][poker card="9s"][poker card="8h"], but the same card gave McMillan and unassailable full house with the [poker card="8s"][poker card="8c"] in his hand for Stebbins to depart. McMillan, so short earlier in the day, now had a better than 2:1 chip lead. It took next to no time for the winner to close it out. McMillan raised to a flop of [poker card="Qh"][poker card="8h"][poker card="2d"] then saw a turn of [poker card="Kd"], sitting with [poker card="Qc"][poker card="9c"]. Davis had come all that way with [poker card="4d"][poker card="4s"] but put McMillan to the ultimate test with a shove on the turn, only for McMillan to find the call and watch the end the tournament play out in his favor when the [poker card="Ks"] landed on the river. WSOP 2021 Event #52 $1,000 Seniors Event Final Table Results: Robert McMillan - $561,060 Robert Davis - $346,743 Daniel Stebbins - $263,640 Jonathan Ingalls - $201,753 Christopher Cummings - $155,4016 Dennis Jensen - $120,484 Louis Cheffy - $94,030 Todd Hansen - $73,873 Daniel Lujano - $58,425 Less Than 50 Remain In COLOSSUS In Event #55, the massive Colossus event, which costs just $400 to enter, saw 1,181 players whittled down to just 49 by the close of play, with four former WSOP bracelet winners in Anatolii Zyrin (9,675,000), Vincas Tamasauskas (6,025,000), Brett Apter (3,000,000) and Carlos Chang (1,775,000) all making Day 3. The Day 2 chip lead is held by Rafael Fernades with 23,300,000 chips, who is followed in the counts by John Trinh (18,850,000) and Elad Kubi (18,675,000), meaning a big lead is in place for Day 3. With others such as Avi Cohen (12,675,000) and Matthew O’Meara (12,400,000) also making the top 10, it’s a stellar field who will return to battle for the bracelet on Day 3. WSOP 2021 Event #55 $400 Colossus Top 10 Chipcounts: Rafael Fernandes - 23,300,000 John Trinh - 18,850,000 Elad Kubi - 18,675,000 Michael Lee - 16,900,000 Avi Cohen - 12,675,000 Matthew O'Meara - 12,400,000 Penh Lo - 12,175,000 Yonatan Basin - 12,000,000 Lucas Kulbe - 11,925,000 Alexandre Malod - 11,900,000 Wong Leads $10K 2-7 Triple Draw Final 8 Event #57 saw 43 Day 2 players play down to just eight as Danny Wong had the kind of dominant day at the Rio that many of us can only dream of. Wong bagged up an incredible 1,755,000 chips by the close of play, with second-placed Brian Yoon (1,170,000), the only other player with over a million chips. Elsewhere in the final eight, players such as Joao Vieira (290,000) and Brandon Shack-Harris (275,000) will both be attempting to prove that a short-stacked player can win from this position yet again, but others won’t have that chance having busted on Day 2. Those included stars of the felt such as Dan Smith, who finished 9th for $24,910, Nathan Gamble (10th for $20,057), and five-time bracelet winner and POY boss Shaun Deeb, who departed in 13th place for $16,552. WSOP 2021 Event #57 $10,000 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw Final Table Chipcounts: Danny Wong - 1,755,000 Brian Yoon - 1,170,000 Wil Wilkinson - 945,000 Don Nguyen - 565,000 Jordan Siegel - 300,000 Joao Vieira - 290,000 Brandon Shack-Harris - 275,000 Mike Thorpe - 110,000 Doyle Brunson Plays The Super Seniors In the Super Seniors Event #58, there was a magical moment inside the Rio as Doyle ‘Texas Dolly’ Brunson arrived to play, sitting down in Level 6 of the popular event. Brunson, who wore his trademark cowboy hat, is now 88 years old and looks unlikely to add to his incredible haul of 10 WSOP bracelets. Despite that, he remains a poker legend and while he lasted only an hour, his face ended up on thousands of people’s camera rolls. Brunson would not make Day 2 of the event, leaving the Rio in his ride-on chair to applause from many players and fans at the felt, but another WSOP legend did make the cut. Sammy Farha finished second to Chris Moneymaker in 2003 as the WSOP Main Event of that year precipitated a ‘poker boom’ we are all still enjoying the reverberations from. Farha totaled 204,100 by the close of play, good for one of the biggest stacks that remain as players such as Jack McClelland, Bill Klei, and Lisa Roberts all joined Doyle on the rail. Now that would be some cash game if they decided to set it up. Finally, it’s not just fans on the rail whose heads turned when Doyle Brunson zoomed into the room on his motorized cart. The 16-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth couldn’t wait to snap a selfie in the name of positivity. https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1454953641442299906 WSOP 2021 Event #58 $1,000 Super Seniors Event Selected Chipcounts: Farhad Davoudzadeh - 414,000 Steve Schneider - 433,000 Gary Bain - 235,000 Ron Lemco - 231,600 Arthur Schiavo - 222,800 Randy Vee - 222,000 Hal Marcus - 220,000 Sammy Farha - 204,100 Martin Yates - 175,000 Valerii Lubenets - 175,000 Tag Team Back Again In Event #59, players joined forces to play in a ‘Tag Team’ event that cost $1,000 to enter and seemed to bring with it Hallowe’en fancy dress as standard. Jeff Platt - who reached fourth place in Event #43, the Double Stack, teamed up with fellow PokerGO broadcaster Brent Hanks to pay tribute to Phil Hellmuth and Daniel Negreanu in the... weirdest way possible. https://twitter.com/BuffaloHanks/status/1454948036937863171 At the felt, Hanks and Platt did very well, making the top 10 with 166,500 chips by close of play. The chip leaders were Mike Ruter and Samy Dighlawi (338,000), while the intriguing and powerful duo of Xuan Liu and Melanie Weisner bagged up 159,000 to put themselves in a very strong position for the win too. WSOP 2021 Event #59 $1,000 Tag Team Event Top 10 Chipcounts: Mike Ruter & Samy Dighlawi - 338,000 Haven Werner & Thomas Taylor - 295,000 Keith Doering & Bill Schaeffer - 235,500 Nikita Luther & Kunal Patni - 195,000 Mike Watson & Sarah Goddard - 169,500 Jeff Platt & Brent Hanks - 166,500 Alexey Mishuk & Alon Eldar - 160,000 Alon Eldar & Unknown - 160,000 Melanie Weisner & Xuan Liu - 159,000 Nellie Park & Joey Weissman - 144,500 Yockey Leads $50K PPC Day 1 Finally, Event #60 took place, with the $50,000 Poker Players Championship one of the highlights of the schedule for many fans, especially those of mixed games. With 43 entries on Day 1, there could well be just as many entries on Day 2, with registration closing after 10 levels and a break. One player barely got into his seat before he was all-in, but Scott Seiver survived and his opponent ended the night as the short stack. https://twitter.com/scott_seiver/status/1454938088753360902 With 39 players still in the hunt from their initial stack, only Jake Schwartz, Matt Ashton, Michael Noori, and Albert Daher went to the rail and will not be able to re-enter. Daniel Negreanu ended the day on just 77,000 chips. It was a different story for Bryce Yockey, who led the field with 653,000 chips by the time the bags came around, with 2019 WSOP Main Event runner-up Dario Sammartino (520,500) and Chris Vitch (504,500) his closest challengers. Others to thrive on Day 1 included Eli Elezra (460,500), Randy Ohel (457,000), Shaun Deeb (448,500), Yuval Bronshtein (440,500) and Brian Rast (437,000), all of whom made the top 10, while the aforementioned Seiver eventually bagged up 366,000 chips. WSOP 2021 Event #60 $1,000 $50,000 Poker Players Championship Top 10 Chipcounts: Bryce Yockey - 653,000 Dario Sammartino - 520,500 Chris Vitch - 504,500 Eli Elezra - 460,500 Randy Ohel - 457,000 Shaun Deeb - 448,500 Yuval Bronshtein - 440,500 Chad Campbell - 439,000 Brian Rast - 437,000 Ryan Leng - 433,000
  13. Daniel Lazrus won the Millionaire Maker for a glorious seven-figure score and a career-defining victory on Day 14 of the 2021 World Series of Poker. With two other bracelet winners taking home gold on an action-packed day, the Thunderdome was the scene for Lazrus, who won his first bracelet in the WSOP Online Series back in the summer, to grab glory and move into fifth place on the WSOP Player of the Year Leaderboard. Lazrus Denies Gathy and Moron for Millionaire Maker Win The overnight chip leader, Daniel Lazrus, took down the Millionaire Maker as he dominated the final five to win $1,000,000 and his second bracelet of the year after triumphing online back in July. Taking the title against the four-time bracelet winner Michael Gathy and Spanish sensation Ignacio Moron in the Thunderdome, Lazrus came into the action with a massive chip lead, and while he lost that lead along the way, he never lost his head to announce his arrival as one of the players of this World Series in style. With five players going into the last day of action, Lazrus was the first to take another out of the reckoning. Ignacio Moron from Spain came into the day second in chips but was short-stacked by the time he shoved all-in with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="9c"]. Lazrus called with [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Kc"] and the board of [poker card="Jh"][poker card="8d"][poker card="6s"][poker card="5d"][poker card="Jd"] eliminated Moron in fifth place for $222,430 and further increased Lazrus’ lead. Next to go was the most experienced player at the table as Lazrus’ dream narrative continued. Michael Gathy had already won four WSOP bracelets before he arrived at the final table, but he couldn’t make it five. Gathy moved all-in for a micro-stack with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="7s"] but while he started the hand ahead of Darryl Ronconi’s [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Qs"], he didn’t end it that way, with Ronconi hitting a straight on the turn to reduce the field to just three. Gathy cashed for $288,715 by finishing in fourth place. That pot put Ronconi in the lead briefly, but Lazrus grabbed the advantage right back, winning with a set of sevens against the aggressive Ronconi’s ace-king, with a big call on the turn seeing Lazrus take the lead back. From that point, the eventual winner never lost it again. Jeffrey Gencarelli busted in third place for $377,125 when his shove with [poker card="As"][poker card="5s"] on a board showing [poker card="Qc"][poker card="Jd"][poker card="4d"][poker card="Ts"] was doomed by Lazrus’ call with [poker card="Qd"][poker card="7s"] after a [poker card="9h"] on the river, allowing Lazrus to go into heads-up in control. With a 4:1 lead, Lazrus began the heads-up well, but a crucial double for Ronconi made the stacks closer. Ronconi shoved with [poker card="Js"][poker card="2d"] and Lazrus made the call with [poker card="3h"][poker card="3d"]. The flop of [poker card="Ts"][poker card="8c"][poker card="7c"] kept the chip leader in front, but while the [poker card="Ks"] maintained that advantage, the [poker card="9s"] river gave Ronconi a miraculous gutshot straight to see Lazrus lead reduced only doubling his opponents stack. The final hand was around the corner, and Ronconi ahead got it in with the worst hand, four-bet jamming with [poker card="Tc"][poker card="7h"], with Lazrus making a quick call with [poker card="As"][poker card="Jh"] and surviving the board of [poker card="9h"][poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"][poker card="Kc"][poker card="4s"] to win his second WSOP bracelet and a career high score of $1,000,000, condemning Ronconi to second place and $500,125. WSOP Event #17 $1,500 Millionaire Maker Final Table Results: Daniel Lazrus - $1,000,000 Darryl Ronconi - $500,125 Jeffrey Gencarelli - $377,125 Michael Gathy - $288,715 Ignacio Moron - $222,430 Kevin Palmer - 172,455 Todd Saffron - $124,570 Adam Sherman - $105,690 Sertac Turker - $83,545 Drinian Denied As Ryan Leng Wins $1,500 Eight Game Mix In Event #23, a thrilling denouement to the Eight-Game Mix saw Ryan Leng crowned champion at Connor Drinan’s expense as six final table players played down to the latest bracelet winner. The $1,500-entry event saw some great names make the final six, with Ryan Hughes first to bust for $19,317 before Schuyler Thornton joined him on the rail in fifth place for $27,038. It was WSOP bracelet winner Dan Zack who busted next, taking the fourth place prize of $38,752 before Brett Shaffer went one place further in third for $56,839. Heads-up saw Drinan begin with the lead and he grew that advantage to a point where he had ten times Leng’s chips. But the pair of two-time WSOP bracelet holders were closesly matched skill-wise and Leng managed to double back into contention before takig the lead. With the chip advantage for the first time, Leng saw it out with back-to-back hands in 2-7 Triple Draw and took down the tournament, winning $137,969 and his first mixed game bracelet, with Drinan’s score of $85,273 scant consolation to the man who was bidding to win his second live WSOP bracelet since the WSOP began, a feat attained by no-one to date. WSOP Event #23 $1,500 Eight-Game Mix Final Table Results: Ryan Leng - $137,969 Connor Drinan - $85,273 Brett Shaffer - $56,839 Daniel Zack - $38,752 Schuyler Thornton - $27,038 Ryan Hughes - $19,317 Prendergast Becomes PLO Champ Three people won WSOP bracelets on Day 14, and the last one of those to do so was Michael Prendergast, who won the $600-entry PLO Deepstack Event #24. Heading into the final table, it was Joao Simao who was the most recognizable name at the felt, but the Brazilian pro crashed out in fourth place to miss out on the podium places and win $42,272. Heads-up began with Jeffrey Barnes in command of proceedings, with a 5:1 chip lead and all the momentum, but Prendergast turned it round, doubling up several times to switch the power in the duel to his side of the table. A few hands later, pocket aces would see him win the bracelet and claim the $127,428 top prize at Barnes’ expense, the runner-up collecting $78,755. WSOP Event #24 $600 Pot Limit Omaha Deepstack Final Table Results: Michael Prendergast - $127,428 Jeffrey Barnes - $78,755 Jungwoong Park - $57,386 Joao Simao - $42,272 Daniel Wasserberg - $31,485 Donnie Phan - $23,713 Eric Polirer - $18,062 John Bunch - $13,915 Joseph Sanders - $10,845 Aoki Leads Final Five in Ladies Championship In the Ladies Championship, the overnight chip leader Mikiyo Aoki went wire-to-wire to lead the final five heading to the Thunderdome to play for the bracelet. With just 17 players starting the day, a dozen would-be busted, with players such as Amanda Baker cashing in 15th place for $4,670 but not making the final. https://twitter.com/mandy22baker/status/1448374643509764096 Elsewhere, Thi Nguyen (10th for $7,023), Cherish Andrews (8th for $11,341) and MArle Cordeiro (7th for $14,791) all got close but Aoki leads the final five with over 4.8 million chips from Debora Brooke (4.4m), while each of the other three ladies to make the final table have more than 1.2 million but less than 1.3m, meaning some exciting early action is guaranteed. WSOP Event #22 $1,000 Ladies Championship Final Table Chipcounts: Mikiyo Aoki - 4,880,000 Debora Brooke - 4,280,000 Diane Cooley - 1,265,000 JJ Liu - 1,250,000 Lara Eisenberg - 1,200,000 Negreanu, Dzivielevski Made $5K Six Max Day 3 In Event #25, the $5,000-entry six-handed tournament, there were 31 survivors to Day 3 as John Racener bagged up the biggest stack of 1,949,000 chips. He is followed in the counts by Jared Jaffe (1.9m) and Craig Mason (1.86m), while stars of the felt such as Bin Weng (1,692,000), Ben Yu (1,493,000), and Anthony Spinella (1,050,000) all made the overnight chip counts. Daniel Negreanu also survived, bagging up over 30 big blinds with 773,000, though ‘Kid Poker’ might be wishing he had walked away from the table with an hour to go, sitting as he did on double those chips with the overall lead in the room. Others to survive with healthy stacks include Yuri Dzivielevski (1,211,000), Vanessa Kade (982,000), and George Wolff (842,000). WSOP Event #25 $5,000 Six-Handed No Limit Hold'em Top 10 Chipcounts: John Racener - 1,949,000 Jared Jaffe - 1,900,000 Craig Mason - 1,860,000 Scott Drobes - 1,825,000 Bin Weng - 1,692,000 Ben Yu - 1,493,000 Arie Kliper - 1,358,000 Justin Liberto - 1,192,000 Vicent Bosh - 1,100,000 Anthony Spinella - 1,050,000 Klump Tops $1K Freezeout Leaderboard In Event #26, the $1,0000 Freezeout event, Levi Klump bagged the biggest stack at the end of the night as 1,358 players were whittled down to just 38 on a fast-paced Day that took 11 hours to complete. With Klump on 2,230,000 chips, he was followed in the counts by Rittie Chuaprasert (1,805,000) and Richard Talerico (1,480,000). Others to cash but not make the final day included Erik Cajelais, Michael Perrone and Dylan Linde, but others were not so fortunate, with just 204 places paid. With almost three dozen players left, there is only one previous bracelet winner among them, with Pete Chen bagging up 920,000 chips with which to attack the final day’s play. WSOP Event #26 $1,000 Freezeout Top 10 Chipcounts: Levi Klump - 2,230,000 Rittie Chuaprasert - 1,805,000 Richard Talerico - 1,480,000 Evan Sandberg - 1,215,000 Kazuki Ikeuchi - 1,210,000 Cole Ferraro - 1,195,000 Axel Reese - 1,110,000 Anthony Askey - 1,045,000 Clement Van Driessche - 1,000,000 David Flood - 945,000 Adam Owen, Josh Arieh In Top 10 of $1,500 H.O.R.S.E Finally, a field of superstars gathered to play the $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. Event #27, with 594 players taking to the felt and only 207 remaining. Only 90 players will cash, and on Day 1, some who failed to do so included Benny Glaser, Eli Elezra, Mike Matusow, Brian Rast, Dan Zack, Dylan Linde, Andre Akkari, and Christina Hill. At the close of play, Mark Dickstein (300,000) led from Adam Owen (220,000), but others such as 2021 bracelet winner John Monnette (162,500), Barry Greenstein (148,500) and Jason Somerville (120,000) will each hold out hope of becoming the latest WSOP winner on Day 15. WSOP Event #27 $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. Top 10 Chipcounts: Mark Dickstein - 300,000 Adam Owen - 220,000 John Holley - 209,500 David Funkhouser - 188,000 Koray Aldermir - 186,500 Barry Ingram - 176,500 Donny Rubenstein - 173,000 Ben Landowski - 173,000 Josh Arieh - 171,000 Michael Coombs - 170,500 Finally, with much talk of player respect and rulings over the last 48 hours, should the last word go to a man who coined his own effect? The 2003 world champion had some words for the man who won it 14 years before him in the row over, well... rows. https://twitter.com/CMONEYMAKER/status/1448301531732791304 Maybe Doyle Brunson’s latest World Series viral quote is about right. https://twitter.com/TexDolly/status/1446959357661384707
  14. This summer, a 16-year association between the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino and the World Series of Poker comes to a close. With poker’s biggest annual festival rumored to be heading to Bally’s Las Vegas Hotel and Casino Event Center starting in the summer of 2022, the curtain comes down on the Rio’s time as host of poker’s signature series of life-changing tournaments. The Rio has been what the WSOP has needed, exactly at the time it needed it. For some, the lasting images of the World Series of Poker come from yesteryear, with legends of the game such as Doyle Brunson, Phil Hellmuth, Stu Ungar, and Johnny Chan winning big at Binion’s. While Binion’s has a great history, the Rio is where poker’s boom led to the growth of the game and its cavernous corridors have provided us with some of the most memorable moments ever witnessed at the felt. Many dramatic moments have followed in the Thunderdome, from Daniel Negreanu’s collapse after near-bubbling the final table to Phil Hellmuth’s record-breaking WSOP bracelet win in 2007 to Mark Newhouse’s celebrated reverse-curse on himself in WSOP the subsequent WSOP Main Event to his career-high score. https://twitter.com/mark_hizzle/status/486037130632638465 Binion’s had the gloriously claustrophobic nature of a state-wide game only much bigger. They hosted the WSOP while it was predominantly an American-attended festival. Fans were four or five deep at the rail, so close to Johnny Chan during his victory against Erik Seidel that they could have reached out and helped him push his chips over the line. The Rio, however, ushered in a new age of poker. During a time when poker enjoyed its years of growth and became more appealing to the mainstream, the rail increased and had to be moved back. Seating was erected in the Thunderdome, and in other rooms, with fans being kept at a modest distance. Antonio Esfandiari’s victory in the $1 million-entry Big One for One Drop in 2012 remains a watershed moment in poker and it all took place in the Thunderdome. From Sam Trickett’s quad threes against Brian Rast to ‘The Magician’ winning the bracelet and being held aloft by his friends and family after he got the better of the Brit heads-up, the event lived in the glow of flashbulbs. When thinking of the World Series of Poker at the Rio what comes to mind to this reporter is one hand in particular. In 2010, Jonathan Duhamel took down the WSOP Main Event to win $8.9 million when he dominated the final table. But in truth, Duhamel took the biggest step to victory when he won possibly the best hand the Rio has ever seen against Matt Affleck. Affleck had pocket aces, Duhamel had pocket jacks and somehow, all the money went in on a turn that saw Affleck a 4:1 favorite. Duhamel needed his straight draw or a jack to come in on the river and when it did, Affleck’s subsequent reaction was heartbreaking and incredible in equal measure. To the legendary commentary of Norman Chad and Lon McEachern, two men whose partnership has itself flourished at the Rio, a “thunderstruck” Affleck burst out of the Thunderdome and threw his water bottle against the wall. A few minutes later, Affleck returned to shake the hand of everyone at the table, ending in Duhamel himself. If the moment started awkwardly, it ended by transcending poker and showing the humanity that exists between poker players. Sure the Rio has its flaws. Poker can be about stepping into a teeming mass of sweat and closeness, shoulder-to-shoulder with your best friend and your biggest enemy - who, in a poker tournament, can be exactly the same person. It can feel like a cauldron. The Rio is often the opposite - it's a ‘cooler’. It's famous for its ice-cold temperatures forcing players to wrap up warm once they walk out of the Vegas sunshine and into the building where the last 15 World Champions have been crowned. Players who don’t insulate or consume enough vitamins have complained of the ‘Rio Flu’ years before COVID came along. In recent years, though, the WSOP Player of the Year has captivated fans for entire summers. With dozens of flags depicting former winners adorning every side of the two main cardrooms, each race has gathered its own momentum inside its echo chambers populated by thousands of poker players. From queues for the restroom and registration desk that snake through the labyrinthine pathways that criss-cross the Rio hallways to the stands of phone battery sellers and massage machines, there is no place like it. The Rio will go down in poker history as the venue where poker grew up, where it became the beast that can now never be tamed. The World Series of Poker will move on in 2022, but the memories of poker's time at the Rio will echo forever. How many more become eternal this Autumn remains as poker should, in the hands of the players who make the game what it is.
  15. It was late in London. The early morning actually, and Erik Seidel, one of poker’s most iconic figures, was back on the grind. Already in the United Kingdom to celebrate his youngest daughter’s wedding, the poker legend decided to extend his stay in the UK’s capital to take care of some business. Specifically, the business of high-stakes poker. And at this moment, his deep run in GGPoker WSOP Online Event #11 ($10,000 Super MILLION$ High Roller) was taking him back to the beginning of his career. “I haven’t stayed up that late for poker since I was in my 20’s,” Seidel said, referring to the overnight hours of Day 1 of the gold bracelet event. “London isn’t ideal for me because I’m a morning person and Day One lasted ’til the next morning.” Even casual fans are familiar with Seidel’s impact on poker and his history that took him from the early days of Mayfair Club in New York to the Poker Hall of Fame in Las Vegas. His career has spanned 40 years and in that time he’s earned nearly $38 million in recorded live earnings. He’s a World Poker Tour champion and, prior to the online high roller he was playing in, had previously won eight WSOP bracelets, making him one of the most prolific players in WSOP history. Seidel didn’t know it at the time but after that sleepless night, he was just days away from adding to his legacy with WSOP bracelet #9. For a player who has experienced just about everything there is to experience in the game of poker, Seidel admits he still feels “out of [his] element online”, making his victory one of the most unique moments of his career. [caption id="attachment_636078" align="alignleft" width="300"] Seidel's online winning moment.[/caption] “I’m just never that comfortable online,” he said. “I like it, it’s nice to be able to play a tourney in bed, but I make mistakes. I had two misclicks at the final table. It’s easier for me to get distracted and there’s always that concern that I’ll lose connection.” In fact, he did lose connection at one point while playing in his hotel on spotty Wi-Fi. But, obviously, the man they call Seiborg recovered nicely. He navigated his way through the field of 624 entries, made the final table, and bested a final nine that included Rui Ferreira, Isaac Baron, Thomas Muehloecker, and eventual runner-up, Francisco Benitez. When it was all over, Seidel won more than $977,000 and made WSOP history. He earned that ninth bracelet and moved into a tie with poker legend Johnny Moss for fifth (third-most) in all-time WSOP bracelets. “Winning any WSOP event is special,” Seidel said when asked where his online bracelet ranks. “This one was extra great for me because it was so unexpected. Getting through 600+ players and then the prize was close to one million, which I think is my biggest WSOP cash, felt really amazing. Might be my favorite.” [caption id="attachment_636079" align="alignright" width="219"] 2007 WSOP victory in NL 2-7 Lowball for bracelet #8.[/caption] That said, as special as winning another bracelet is for him, 14 years after winning #8, Seidel hasn’t been consumed with the bracelet chase as, perhaps, some other pre-poker boom prominent players. “I can’t say I really get caught up in bracelet fever,” he said. “My focus has been much more on higher buy-in No Limit events. If you really want to rack up bracelets, you’ve got to play the high buy-in limit events at the WSOP, the No Limit fields are way too big. I play a limited amount of events at the WSOP, and I love playing them, but I’m not trying to maximize my chances by playing every event.” It would be tough for anyone to not want to push if given the chance to break into double-digit bracelets. It’s well-known that there are currently only four players with 10 or more. Phil Hellmuth is the all-time leader with 15. And then, tied for second, all with 10, are Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan, and Phil Ivey - a club that’s hasn’t admitted a new member since 2014. Now, Seidel is knocking on the door. At 61, he says he has no intentions of slowing down and has set his sights on playing a healthy schedule at this year’s WSOP. “I love playing, I hope I can continue competing for a while. I expect to play 20-something events at the WSOP although I’m really disappointed in the WSOP schedule this year, the big NL events that I’d love to play in are all very close to Thanksgiving. I’ll have to see if I can play them.”
  16. It’s been nearly two years since the last live World Series of Poker took place and for poker players around the world, poker’s premier summer camp has been sorely missed. It's not just the massive amount of action, but also all of the little things that take place when one travels to Sin City to chase the glory of winning a bracelet, that makes for the total experience. With the World Series of Poker 50 days away, the PocketFives staff sat down and came up with 50 things, both big and small (and in no particular order), that we are looking forward to when the WSOP returns on September 30. 1. “Shuffle Up And Deal” Is there anything more exciting than taking your seat in a WSOP bracelet event and getting underway with the classic starting gun of “Shuffle Up and Deal!” 2. Daniel Negreanu’s poker vlogs. Over the past few years, one of the most fun pieces of content has been Daniel Negreanu allowing you to be his wingman as he chases WSOP bracelet number seven in his daily WSOP vlogs. Everything from cameos by some of poker’s biggest stars to behind-the-scenes access to his daily grind Negreanu lets those who can’t make the trip to the WSOP feel like they are part of the action. 3. The hustle back to the table. Speed walking the Rio hallway to make sure you don’t miss a hand after the break. Not only do you want to be in action, but we all know that if we miss a hand or two, somebody at the table will inevitably joke that “you got aces” upon your return. 4. The Poker Kitchen. Trying to decide between chicken strips or a pre-packaged sandwich from the poker kitchen. Complaining about the food at the poker kitchen has become as much of a WSOP tradition as the bracelets themselves. But we’d all rather eat the $18 cobb salad than getting stuck in traffic trying to get back to the Rio after the dinner break. 5. Standing in line at Starbucks behind Huck Seed. Hitting the long line at the Rio Starbucks to get some caffeine to shake off the night before and get ready for a long grind at the tables and see some of your favorite poker players doing the same thing. 6. Behold the bracelet! One can’t help but appreciate the moment when WSOP tournament director Jack Effel presents the gold bracelet to the series most recent champion. 7. Grinding for lammers. Getting your satellite grind on, grabbing pink lammers, and then wandering the hallways looking for someone who is buying into the next event to sell them to. 8. The Amazon Room. There was a time when all of the rooms had the dim lighting currently held by the Amazon Room, but whether you start there or are moved into the back ballroom as the money draws near - there’s nothing like playing in the Amazon Room. 9. Killing time in the “Mothership.” Not everything is going to go your way at the WSOP, but when you’ve busted the latest tournament and you’re ready to dive into the next one, the ample seating of the Final Table spaceship has a spot for you to watch the kind of action you are hoping to be playing in. 10. Squeaking into the money. Of course, everyone would prefer to be the big stack heading into the money bubble. But when the choice is not your own and you gotta grind out those last few big blinds to make the money, sometimes trying to survive on fumes is a game unto itself. 11. Acting like you’ve been there before. Tap, tap. Nice hand. Good luck everyone. 12. Mean mugging for poker photogs. You’re a poker player at a poker table in the middle of a poker game. Now, let’s see that poker face. 13. Friendly reunions… It’s been nearly two years since the last World Series of Poker and, for many, the same amount of time since they’ve seen some of their friends from poker player summer camp in person. Raise a glass to reunions! 14. …at the Hooker Bar. The last stop on the way out of the Rio is the iconic “Hooker Bar” where many of the WSOP’s greatest late-night stories have taken place. There’s always time for one more. 15. Getting harassed by phone charging vendors. The bad boys of the WSOP hallway will be back for one more shot at upselling you a phone accessory at four times what you can get it for online. A sight for sore eyes for sure. 16. Phil Hellmuth rants. Love him or hate him, the Poker Brat is woven into the fabric of the WSOP. The 15 bracelets are only half of what makes Hellmuth, well, Hellmuth. The other is the antics and temper tantrums that have helped make him famous. At some point during the seven weeks of action, somebody is going to do something to set Hellmuth off. And the ensuing rant about how bad his opponents play and/or how well he is playing will serve as a tell-tale sign that the WSOP is back. 17. Finding a GTO way to beating the crowds to the restroom. Maybe this isn’t something to look forward to but it’s key to make life a little more comfortable during the series. No one wants to miss a hand, what you don’t know won’t hurt you and standing in a long line to use the restroom is one of the worst ways to spend a break. 18. Mid-day table-side massages. Long days of grinding can wear a person down, luckily there’s a swarm of top-tier professionals ready to help work out the kinks while you are trying to build a stack at the table. 19. Picking up big hands in big spots. Who wouldn’t be excited to look down at pocket aces in a bracelet event? 20. Getting featured on an upcoming vlog (battling for Bradley Bucks). Whether it’s at the Rio or another one of Las Vegas’ many poker rooms, during the WSOP most of the well-known vloggers will be in action. Whether it’s Brad or Andrew, Jaman or Johnnie or another up-and-coming poker cinematographer like Mariano, there’s a chance that if you play cash games in Sin City you might just get to guest star in an upcoming YouTube vlog. 21. Kevmath’s Daily Deepstack Updates. There simply isn’t a more beloved figure in poker than Kevin Mathers and following along as the man known as the WSOP social media czar or guru navigates his way through a Michelob Ultra or two while playing in one of the Rio Daily Deepstacks gives everybody the feels. 22. Having a drink with Niall Farrell at Hal’s hallway bar. As long as it’s not the first or second level of the day, you can find Niall Farrell in one of two places. The first is the Daily Deepstack where he’s blasting away while a Corona or two deep. The other is in the hallway bar with his good friend Hal the Bartender. Either way, Niall’s a good enough sport that he just might buy you a beer and listen to your bad beat story. 23. Punting a Saturday tournament to make a Sunday LV Raiders game. Okay, so maybe this isn’t something we missed since the Raiders weren’t in Vegas in 2019 and this is the first (and only) Fall WSOP, but knowing you can get over the bad beat by watching the Raiders the next day is something to look forward to. 24. Grabbing the latest in poker literature from D&B. Seeing Dan and Byron from D&B Poker selling the latest poker books from the likes of Chris Moorman, Jonathan Little, and PocketFives’ own Lance Bradley at their booth in the hallway. 25. Sitting to the left of one of your favorite pros (or anywhere with Phil Laak). One of the best parts about the World Series of Poker is that anyone, who can pony up a buy-in, can play. That means that recreational players get to mingle with the pros and no matter the bracelet event, there’s going to be some famous poker players in the field. Don’t pass up the chance to put in a three-bet when you think Phil Laak is raising light. 26. Diving out of the way of Doyle’s scooter. It was just a couple of years ago that Doyle said he was finished playing tournaments at the WSOP. But this year, he indicated that in 2021 - he’d be back scooting around the Amazon room for an encore (and a shot at bracelet #11). 27. Suffering through a bad beat story (while still in the tournament). Bad beat stories are rarely tolerable but when you still have a shot at a gold bracelet, you can lend an ear to a friend. After all, if and when you bust, you’ll be the one telling the story. 28. Cheering on a friend making a deep run - when you have a piece of them. Poker’s an individual game, but having (and being a part of) a support system is crucial. So, enjoy the ride from the sidelines when you have a small percentage of a pal and help them keep their head on straight in the middle of a deep run. 29. Bagging chips at the end of the day. No better way to end a day of play than to find a bag in a big event. Pass the pens around and write your name clearly so friends and family can find you in the chip counts. 30. Players complaining about a live update having bad info. Poker fans around the world consume content at a gluttonous pace during the WSOP. This includes live updates from every bracelet event. Inevitably, some of the reported include mistakes. A card is reported incorrectly, either the suit or the value is wrong. Sometimes bet sizes are wrong. These mistakes happen in the rush to get information to those hungry fans. This causes players involved in those hands to take their complaints to Twitter. 31. Playing the games your local card room never bothers to offer. No Limit Hold’em may be the “Cadillac of Poker” but the game has so much more to offer when you play other variants. During the WSOP, there are plenty of other games offered (both inside and outside of the Rio) to allow you to test your overall poker skills. 32. A deep run in the $50K by Phil Ivey. With all of his court cases officially behind him, Phil Ivey has indicated that he’s planning on making a return to the Rio this year. When he does, it’s expected he’ll be firing in the biggest tournaments on the schedule, including the $50,000 Poker Players Championship where he’ll be a favorite to make a deep run. 33. Late-night cash game action everywhere in Sin City. When the World Series of Poker tournaments are taking place, the cash game action all over the city reaches a fever pitch. Not only can you find great games, at every buy-in level, in nearly every poker room on the strip but poker rooms games that don’t typically run also show up on the board. It’s non-stop cash game action during the WSOP. 34. Treating yourself to an All-American Dave meal. Sure, the poker kitchen is good for a quick bite but it’s not exactly a quick bite that’s good FOR you. All-American Dave has serviced the WSOP poker playing public with healthy meals from his food truck. You don’t have to be a baller and get the meals delivered to the table, you can simply pop out back and treat yourself to something a little healthier to help get you through the day. 35. Forgetting what day of the week it is. The grind plays tricks on the mind. Just don’t miss your flight home. 36. Calling for a card and seeing it appear. Everything seems bigger when battling for a bracelet and it just feels so good when you spike the perfect card at the perfect time to keep the dream alive for another orbit. 37. Hearing Gus Hansen announce that “It’s going to be a great fall.” While in Las Vegas throughout 2018 and 2019 Gus Hansen let it be known that “it’s going to be a great summer.” With the WSOP playing out in the fall this year, we hope to see The Great Dane keep the good times going with an appropriate seasonal motto. 38. Watching your ODB Fantasy team struggle. Despite fielding a near-perfect roster, complete with a pair of sleeper picks you stole for the cheap, your fantasy team is still going to underperform. But that’s ok because it’s all about the sweat anyway. 39. Live episodes of The FIVES from the Amazon Room. You may be stuck behind a desk for the time being but the guys from The FIVES will be bringing you all of the latest news and results from the floor of the WSOP. A great way to kill an hour and keep tabs on the series. 40. Double bracelet winners. It's almost a certainty that at least one player will go on a heater and sun run their way to at least two bracelets during the series. Can't wait to see who emerges this year. 41. Allen Kessler finishing second in something. Four times in his WSOP career, Allen ‘the Chainsaw’ Kessler has made his way through all but one player in a WSOP event only to have that one player block him from winning his first WSOP bracelet. Kessler has served as bridesmaid to Lukas Zaskodny, Brian Rast, Frank Kassela, and Todd Brunson. 42. Short stacks "struggling" to find their new table. For a lot of players, cashing in a WSOP event is a lifelong dream. Some might be willing to, let’s say, bend the rules a little bit to check that item off of their bucket list. This includes the short stack being sent to their new table only to find the open seat is about to be in the big blind. It’s at this moment that a poker player with an aptitude for numbers fails to understand the elementary school level system of numbering tables as they walk right by that empty seat before getting “lost” in the tables some 30 feet away. 43. Getting called “baby” by Scotty Nguyen. In 1998, Scotty Nguyen looked at Kevin McBride at told him, “you call, gonna be all over, baby” on his way to winning the WSOP Main Event. Since then, Nguyen has won three more WSOP bracelets (for a total of five) and has called approximately 71 million other poker players “baby” in what has become his trademark phrase. 44. Walking past a closed Hash House. Dinner breaks at the WSOP can be chaos. Some players grab Ubers or taxis and head to local restaurants, but the majority of players look for something inside the Rio. On the busiest of days, that leads to long lines at All-American Bar & Grille, El Burro Borracho, and the dim sum joint. But on your way from the tournament area to those restaurants, you’ll inevitably walk past a closed Hash House A Go Go. The breakfast spot is apparently only allowed to be open during breakfast hours. 45. Making the correct decision in a big, big spot. Sometimes you gotta risk it for the biscuit and one of the best feelings in tournament poker is making the right decision in the most crucial of spots with what feels like all the eyes in the room on you. 46. That god damned carpet. There isn’t a casino in the world that doesn’t have tilt-inducing carpet and the Rio is no exception. But over the years, players have come to know the carpet well - much like the carpet in their parent's house. You don’t like it. You wouldn’t put it in your house. But at least it’s familiar. 47. Hopping in an Uber to head to your next tournament. Busting out of a WSOP tournament is a horrible, horrible feeling for any player. Thankfully, the WSOP isn’t the only tournament series in town and the next event is just a short Uber ride away. 48.Finally making it out of the bowling alley and into the Brazilia during the Reunion. Smaller buy-in WSOP tournaments draw massive turnouts every year. While that’s great for the prize pools and the eventual winner, sometimes players are forced to start their tournament journey in less-than-ideal settings. Any available square footage gets used and in past years that has included an empty bowling alley and the area right outside of Guy Fierri’s Mexican joint. Getting moved from there to the main tournament is a welcome sight for all. 49. Check-raising the flop with air. You defended the big blind against a 3X open with [5c][8d] and the flop came [jh][7s][2s]. You checked to the aggressor and he fired out a pretty standard continuation bet. At this point you really had two choices: fold and post the small blind for the next hand, or announce “raise” and put your opponent to the test. Maybe even because you put him on Ace-King? 50. The Main Event! There’s only one, true World Series of Poker Main Event and there’s nothing like it in the game of poker.
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