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Found 29 results

  1. On Saturday, Isaac Haxton (pictured) and Viktor Blom, better known as luvtheWNBAand Isildur1 online, respectively, took to the $200/$400 CAP PLO tables on Full Tilt, according to HighStakesDB. As the tracking site outlined, when all was said and done, Haxton ended the match up $180,000, not a bad haul for one day. During an 80-minute session in the afternoon on Saturday, Blom shipped $141,000 to Haxton. And, according to HighStakesDB, a lack of experience in PLO could have been to blame: "Haxton has been working hard on his PLO game of late, whereas Isildur1 has rarely been seen at the big bet games in recent months, instead choosing to play in the Limit or Mixed Games." Blom's loss rate was $1,700 per minute during the hour-plus session. Several hours later, Haxton and Blom reconvened and the former raked in another $30,000. HighStakesDB added that Blom's "final throw of the dice versus Haxton was a 26-hand session at the $100/$200 tables, but once again he came up short, losing a final $8k. Haxton ended the day up $180.3k." HighStakesDB started tracking Haxton in mid-2007 and he is up $1.8 million since then in high-stakes games. This year alone, Haxton has profited $1.4 million. He has made over a quarter-of-a-million dollars in PLO. HighStakesDB began tracking Blom (pictured) in 2009 and he is down $3.3 million lifetime, including almost $1.7 million this year. He has bled over $4.1 million in PLO over the course of his career and was the fixture of the high-stakes community in 2009. Blom had been absent from Full Tilt for two months after parting ways with the site, which essentially dissolved its Professionals sponsored pro team in October. Blom officially returned on December 5. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook. You can also subscribe to our RSS feed.
  2. [caption width="640"] Dani 'supernova9' Stern topped the high-stakes cash game leaderboard in March (photo credit Danny Maxwell/PokerNews)[/caption] It was no April fool's joke. Dani 'supernova9' Stern topped the high-stakes cash game leaderboard for March, according to HighStakesDB and beat out all other competitors by almost $100,000. Stern raked in $352,017 in profit last month over the course of 131 sessions and 10,203 hands. On average, Stern profited $2,687 per session played and just over $34 per hand. Not a bad way to spend 31 days. Stern began the month of March a half-million dollars in the red, so the upswing could not have come at a better time. He was down the most money since the tracking site began following him and responded by ending the month still down $130,000, but in much better shape than he was 31 days ago. Stern made mincemeat of the Pot Limit Omaha tables on PokerStars on March 17, carving up his competition to the tune of $238,000. Every dime of that came courtesy of Timofey 'Trueteller' Kuznetsov. The following day, Stern took another $67,000 off Kuznetsov, seemingly ensuring that he'd be in the black for the month. The largest hand of the month was worth $186,000 and came in a $200/$400 heads-up Pot Limit Omaha table between Stern and Kuznetsov. Stern had [poker card="kh"][poker card="th"][poker card="6c"][poker card="6s"], while Kuznetsov was dealt [poker card="ac"][poker card="kd"][poker card="td"][poker card="4c"]. The flop of [poker card="jc"][poker card="8c"][poker card="6d"] brought two clubs and the money went in. The turn and river were run twice, but no club came and Stern raked in the entire pot. Sitting $91,000 behind Stern on the high-stakes cash game leaderboard for March was fellow American transplant Isaac 'philivey2694' Haxton, who ended up at $260,283 in profit. Haxton was down about $130,000 lifetime at the high stakes tables when the year began but helped in part by his impressive showing in March, the pro is now up almost $400,000 lifetime. [caption width="640"] Isaac 'philivey2694' Haxton profited 0,283 in March, the second highest total of anyone[/caption] Haxton had 75 sessions and 3,441 hands in March for an average of $3,470 per session and $75 per hand. The latter was more than double Stern's rate for the month. Third place on the high-stakes leaderboard in March went to 'Cobus83', who raked in $221,883 in profit on PokerStars and is now the 70th biggest winner on HighStakesDB. The primarily PLO player turned in 50 sessions and 3,574 hands in March, an average of $4,437 per session and $62 per hand. 'Cobus83' has pretty much been on the up-and-up over the course of his career and his $221,883 in profit added to an already impressive high-stakes cash game resume. In fact, he passed $800,000 in profit for his career in March for the first time ever. The six-figure profit comes after February which saw him lose almost $100,000 in February. Mikael 'ChaoRen160' Thuritz, who was the biggest winner in February at $158,000 in profit, continued his torrid pace in March, profiting $165,547 on the month. Thuritz had 28 sessions and 2,264 hands during the month, much of which came on March 21 during a Mixed Game session in which he profited $130,000. In that session, he wasn't up against soft competition, either, as he rolled over the likes of Dzmitry 'Colisea' Urbanovich, Alex 'BiatchPeople' Luneau, Alexander 'joiso' Kostritsyn, Mike 'gordo16' Gorodinsky, and Elior 'Crazy Elior' Sion. Five players profited more than $100,000 in March. Here was the leaderboard for the month: supernova9 (131 sessions, 10,203 hands) - $352,017 profit philivey2694 (75 sessions, 3,441 hands) - $260,283 profit Cobus83 (50 sessions, 3,574 hands) - $221,883 profit Sauce123 (73 sessions, 9,131 hands) - $198,806 profit ChaoRen160 (28 sessions, 2,264 hands) - $165,547 profit w00ki3z. (126 sessions, 16,594 hands) - $82,791 profit calvin7v (40 sessions, 4,077 hands) - $72,602 profit Secret_M0d3 (8 sessions, 558 hands) - $57,764 profit Fake Love888 (6 sessions, 1,646 hands) - $56,818 profit Durmitor26 (38 sessions, 5,008 hands) - $45,167 profit
  3. [caption width="640"] Isaac Haxton was one of three high stakes regulars to attend a meeting with PokerStars executives.[/caption] Isaac Haxton, Dani Stern and Daniel Dvoress finally issued a statement Saturday night, detailing as much as possible their recent meeting with PokerStars and Amaya executives. If you were hoping that the site would backtrack on its many changes that have affected high-stakes and high-volume regulars, it's time to think again. The Meeting Stern, Haxton and Dvoress met with various PokerStars and Amaya executives on Monday, January 18. According to a statement issued by the trio on TwoPlusTwo, the meeting lasted for eight hours and all parties signed non-disclosure agreements that prohibited them from releasing any financial information, including details of the PokerStars ecosystem. "Going into the meeting, our highest priority was to address PokerStars' decision not to give the 2016 rewards they had promised to players earning SN and SNE statuses in 2015," the statement read. "We reminded them that it is not too late to make it right." Amaya CEO David Baazov briefly joined the meeting but Stern described him as being "little out of touch with the online poker environment." Team PokerStars Pro Daniel Negreanu, who has been critical of the manner in which the drastic changes were communicated, was also in attendance. Eric Hollreiser, Vice President of Corporate Communications for Amaya and PokerStars, was also in attendance at the meeting and has indicated a corporate statement will be released Monday. The PokerStars Ecosystem According to the three players, Amaya officials "denied having any firm obligation to give 2015 SNs and SNEs the rewards they were promised and asserted that they did not feel that doing so would be in the best interests of their business." The group admitted that Amaya gave "compelling" evidence that the current ecosystem at PokerStars needed to be re-tooled. They were not convinced however that the changes made will have the impact PokerStars has said they will. "We did not feel that we were shown convincing evidence that any of the changes implemented so far would directly impact issues with the game ecology or the playing experience of recreational players," the statement said. Hyper Sit and Gos The meeting also included discussion of the high-stakes hyper sit and gos, which the three players claim are "unbeatable" without benefits given to high-volume players. "We were simply assured that they were aware that high-stakes hypers were likely to be heavily impacted and planned to monitor those games closely," the group explained. Stern, Haxton and Dvoress were "unclear" whether any changes would actually be made to these games. Cash Game VPPs The trio felt that the data being presented by PokerStars wasn't entirely inclusive of all player types. "[Amaya] tended to present the results of the biggest winners, or ignore the results of players who put in high volume and lost, in ways that systematically overstated how much pros in these games could or did win," the joint statement said. "They assured us that PokerStars considers high-stakes cash an important part of its offering and that there are no plans to eliminate these games." The group also pitched "reducing rake in short-handed cash games while increasing it in full games and offering discounts/bonuses for SNGs that run with a lineup of all SN or SNE players." However, according to the players, PokerStars had no interest. "PokerStars is Not Willing to Reconsider Any of the Changes" While the group was optimistic heading in to the meeting, they left Montreal without any promises from PokerStars to rollback any changes. Just the opposite in fact. "We deeply regret that we are not bringing back any good news for the players. We tried our best to present both practical and ethical arguments against the SN/SNE cuts, but PokerStars is not willing to reconsider any of the changes." UPDATE: "Although that may not be what some players want to hear, the recent meeting demonstrated that an ongoing dialogue can provide greater understanding. We hope to build upon this meeting, and to continue listening to players, even if - and especially when - they disagree with us," Hollreiser wrote in a blog entry on the PokerStars Corporate blog Monday afternoon. Daniel Negreanu's Involvement In follow-up comments to the report, Stern revealed that PokerStars front man Daniel Negreanu, who attended parts of the meeting, was largely quiet, but did speak out about the two-year Supernova commitment. Negreanu has been vocal that the changes should have been better communicated and come with more advanced warning. Why the Meeting Was Held When asked, "If Amaya had no good news, why do you think you were even there," Haxton responded, "Because Negreanu demanded it." Stern said he thought the goal of the meeting, from Amaya's end, was to "convince us that the VIP changes were necessary to fix a problem." Stern and company, however, claimed Amaya presented no evidence that "taking more money out of the games would produce a benefit for any players." More Player Meetings Coming? Despite all of the seemingly pessimistic news for players, Stern revealed that player meetings could be held more often, as Amaya "at least appeared eager to engage with players more often."
  4. [CAPTION=90%]Isaac Haxton has decided not to renew his Team PokerStars Online contract[/CAPTION] Just a few minutes before boarding a flight to Manila to play the $200,000 buy-in Triton Super High Roller Cali Cup in the Philpines, Isaac Haxton dropped a bombshell – he was leaving Team PokerStars Online. “As of today, I am sad to report that my PokerStars Team Pro Online contract has expired and I have made the decision not to renew it,” Haxton wrote Friday in a post on TwoPlusTwo. Haxton’s decision to walk away from guaranteed money comes after PokerStars made the decision to drastically alter their VIP player rewards program for 2016 and Haxton admitted that was at the crux of his decision to not renew his contract with the online poker giant. “In the past, when I have disagreed with a PokerStars decision, it has been on practical matters of which goals are most important and which policies most effectively advance those goals,” Haxton wrote. “This time my disagreement is simpler, and deeper. I believe PokerStars is behaving unethically.” Haxton’s decision comes just weeks after Alex Millar, another member of Team PokerStars Online, made the same announcement after finding the recent VIP program changes hard to support. Having been a SuperNova Elite himself, Haxton empathized with those who put in the hours to gain the status – and the rewards that came with it. “For most of the players who do it, it is an all-consuming commitment more intense than most full time jobs. Many of them have relocated far from their homes and families to pursue it,” Haxton wrote. “Finding out, just as you approach the finish line, that your efforts will not be rewarded as you expected them to be is brutal.” PokerStars announced in November that there would be no SuperNova Elite rewards for 2016 – meaning players who had been putting in the hours throughout 2015 had been doing so in vain. “I cannot in good conscience continue to endorse a poker site that treats its players this way,” he wrote. Haxton was first signed to Team PokerStars Online in October, 2012 in what he described as one of the “proudest moments” of his poker career. During his time with PokerStars, Haxton was featured in a mini-documentary, The Isaac Haxton Story, chronicling his rise in the online poker world.
  5. [caption width="640"] Chris Moorman played the Bellagio ,000 High Roller and found himself in a tough spot against Sergio Aido (888poker photo)[/caption] I F*cked Up is a PocketFives series where the game's best tell stories of where they got it wrong. Mistakes happen every day in poker and let these players be the first to tell you it happens to everyone. Chris Moorman didn’t become the highest all-time winning online tournament player by making mistakes. Moorman’s career is filled with accolades and he added to them by winning his first World Series of Poker bracelet this summer. Moorman is in the midst of winding down his busy 2017 and entered the Bellagio Five Diamond $10,000 High Roller event last week. "I don't normally play high rollers, but I was playing good and it was a lower buy-in. I felt like testing myself," Moorman said. The tournament up to that point was relatively smooth for Moorman until he found himself tangled up in a pot with Sergio Aido. Moorman had it in his mind that he was about to win a big pot but not adjusting well to an unlucky river card dashed those plans. The Hand At an eight-handed table with the blinds at 1,000-2,500 with a 2,500 big blind ante, Moorman opened off of about 300,000 to 5,500 in the hijack with [poker card="qh"][poker card="jh"]. Aido three-bet to 20,000 out of the big blind and Moorman, who said he had folded previously to a few three-bets, decided to call in position. Aido continued for 17,000 on the [poker card="9c"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3h"] flop and Moorman called. “I like my position to call with my over cards and the flush draw. I’m also too deep to raise,” Moorman said. Moorman’s flush came in on the [poker card="6h"] and Aido fired 38,000 more. “I expected him to check,” Moorman said. “He doesn’t have many flush combinations. I thought he might have aces or ace-king with the ace of hearts. Maybe pocket kings or queens. He may fold if I shove if he doesn’t have a heart. There aren't many bad rivers and he doesn’t have many full houses. I called again.” The river came the [poker card="kh"], and Moorman called the fourth heart on board “disastrous.” Aido moved all-in for 90,000 and the thoughts Moorman had of becoming a dominating chip leader were in peril. “A lot of his range I put him on had the ace of hearts in it. At the time, I felt like I leveled myself and rushed into a position. I don’t play against these guys often and If I fold here, I could easily get exploited.” Moorman wound up making a “sigh call” and Aido showed him pocket aces with the ace of hearts. The hand took a major chunk out of Moorman’s stack and he wound up not cashing in the event. The Aftermath Moorman points out that in a high stakes tournament like the $10,000 event, it becomes easy to level yourself in certain situations. Among the players at Moorman’s table included Isaac Haxton and Ben Tollerene. It was paramount for Moorman to avoid being exploitable, thus making him a target for the table filled with elite talent. “I’ve played with Sergio online and know people who play with him in Macau. The situation can get in your head. If I fold to three three-bets in a row, it looks weak. You can easily level yourself. It’s a tough tournament with no easy spots. If you’re playing weak, they can go after you.” The Lesson The worst river card hit for Moorman and his dreams of winning a substantial pot were dashed. Moorman says he got ahead of himself during the hand and struggled to establish himself within the new reality of the fourth heart on board. The river call was made not out of pure poker sense, but out a little bit of frustration as well. Even a well-seasoned pro like Moorman is capable of suffering from a lapse in judgment. “It’s a weird situation that most people struggle with; I struggle with this,” Moorman said “When you have the nuts, you get ahead of yourself. I might be chip leader. The worst river card comes, and you’re like ‘what do you do?’ It shouldn’t happen to anyone, but it does. I was getting ahead of myself and then I just have a bluff catcher. In a sense, I felt frustrated and justified it by saying if I’m folding, I’m only calling with the ace of hearts.” Moorman suggests players try as much as they can to remove the emotion of the situation itself from the decision making process. "If you start trying to list hands you can beat and you can’t list many, you should fold. On the turn card, with weaker hands, is he really betting without a high heart? Once the king of hearts comes on the river, you don’t really have anything. It’s only two-thirds pot and you have to sort of save the chips. It’s hard to do because it’s tough mentally.” When confronted with the frustration of the moment, Moorman texted a few folks to get the hand off his chest and recommends that source of conflict resolution to others. This hand, as thousands before it, will serve as a lesson for Moorman and he will put his skills to the test again next week in the WPT Bellagio Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event.
  6. [caption width="640"] Isaac Haxton has just 14 players standing between himself and his first career WSOP bracelet (PokerStars photo)[/caption] There was supposed to be a bracelet awarded Tuesday at the 2017 World Series of Poker on Tuesday, but the final table of the $888 Crazy Eights event needs one more day to get to a winner. Meanwhile, the $50,000 Poker Players Championship bubble burst after two-time PPC champion Michael Mizrachi saw his run for a third title, and fourth cash, end just short of the money. Three other events filled out the Tuesday schedule with some familiar names and faces dotting the leaderboard. $888 Crazy Eights Down to Just Two After three days of play in the $888 Crazy Eights event, Alexandru Papazian and Kilian Kramer needed another day. The final two players bagged up their chips after Harry Lodge was eliminated in third place just before 1 am Wednesday morning. Papazian has a 3.5-1 chip lead over Kramer. The day began with 28 players still in contention for the bracelet and the $888,8888 first place prize. Ian O'Hara, who began the day with the chip lead, ended up busting in 20th place. Pablo Mariz, who won the Millionaire Maker and was part of the runner-up team in the $1,000 Tag Team event earlier this summer, finished 13th for $41,223. Another 2017 bracelet winner, Ben Yu, finished 9th, just missing out on his third final table of the summer, for $67,126. The action resumes at 1 pm PT. Heads Up Chip Counts Alexandru Papazian - 50,725,000 Kilian Kramer - 14,225,000 Haxton Leads $50K PPC All-Star Field Michael Mizrachi has won the $50,000 Poker Players Championship twice and final tabled it one other time. On Tuesday though, he did something he had yet to do in his historic career: he bubbled the event. Mizrachi was eliminated in 16th place on Tuesday, leaving the remaining 15 players in the money with just one day to go. Mizrachi was one of 29 players to hit the rail on Day 3 of the event with only a story to tell for the efforts. Leading the final 15 players is Isaac Haxton. Despite having over $1.75 in lifetime WSOP earnings, Haxton has never won a WSOP bracelet. Right behind Haxton is four WSOP bracelet winners. Matthew Ashton (3,220,000), Shaun Deeb (2,442,000), Paul Volpe (2,315,000) and Daniel Negreanu (2,223,000). Rounding out the top five is Elior Sion with 2,033,000. Also still in the event are Scott Seiver, Mike Matusow and 2017 WSOP Player of the Year contender James Obst. A win by Obst would catapult him into the POY lead heading into the final week of the Series. Top 15 Chip Counts Isaac Haxton - 3,268,000 Matthew Ashton - 3,220,000 Shaun Deeb - 2,442,000 Paul Volpe - 2,315,000 Daniel Negreanu - 2,223,000 Elior Sion - 2,033,000 Ivo Donev - 1,900,000 Aaron Katz - 1,484,000 Scott Seiver - 1,428,000 Ian Johns - 1,044,000 Johannes Becker - 897,000 James Obst - 856,000 Talal Shakerchi - 828,000 Mike Matusow - 565,000 Ralph Perry - 508,000 Patrick Truong Leads $1,000 No Limit Hold'em Just 20 players remain in the $1,000 No Limit Hold'em event after Day 2 and American Patrick Truong has a narrow chip lead over the rest of the field. Truong finished play Tuesday with 1,130,000 while Michael Amato (1,111,000) and Ryan Hughes (1,040,000) joining him as the only players with more than a million chips. John Monnette, Andy Frankenberger and Eddy Sabat are also all still in contention. A top four finish by Monnette would propel him into the lead for WSOP POY. There were 182 players at the start of play Tuesday with just 20 making it through the day. Some of the notable names that busted out on Tuesday included Daniel Strelitz, Conor Beresford, Ismael Bojang, John Phan, Joe Kuether, Dan Shak, Keven Stammen, and former #1-ranked PocketFiver Cliff Josephy. Action resumes at Noon PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Patrick Truong - 1,130,000 Michael Amato - 1,111,000 Ryan Hughes - 1,040,000 Rulah Divine - 943,000 Yunsheng Sun - 689,000 Martins Kleins - 600,000 Michael Rocco - 507,000 John Monnette - 426,000 John Green - 371,000 Liang Xu - 302,000 Ryan Laplante Continues to Lead $1,500 NLHE/PLO Mix Ryan Laplante was the chip leader at the end of Day 1 of the $1,500 NLHE/PLO Mix and through another 10 levels of play on Tuesday, continues to sit on top of the chip counts. Laplante ended Day 2 with 1,105,000, just ahead of Esther Taylor's 1,057,000. Just 16 players remain in the event including Shannon Shorr, Mark Radoja, Connor Drinan and Bernardo Dias. Among the 142 eliminations on Tuesday were Chance Kornuth, Martin Staszko, Carlos Mortensen, Barny Boatman, Tyler Patterson, Jeff Gross and recent bracelet winner Bryce Yockey. Former #1-ranked PocketFivers Kevin Saul, Steve Gross and Chris Moorman were also among the casualties. Day 3 begins at 2 pm Tuesday and will play down to a winner. Top 10 Chip Counts Ryan Laplante - 1,105,000 Esther Taylor - 1,057,000 Khorchidian Nichan - 895,000 Shannon Shorr - 789,000 Mark Radoja - 710,000 Victor Choupeaux - 667,000 Jerry Callahan - 451,000 Sebastian Langrock - 404,000 Connor Drinan - 392,000 Gabriele Digiuseppe - 320,000 Dylan Linde Leads $1,000 Turbo Heading into Final Day With just 30 minute levels and two days to play, the $1,000 Turbo NLHE event gives players a chance to get in a quick WSOP event before the Main Event begins. Dylan Linde took full advantage of this on Tuesday, bagging up the Day 1 chip lead with just 27 players left. Aaron Hirst finished Day 1 with the second biggest stack at 459,000. Anton Bertilsson rounded out the top three with 432,000. Some of the players that picked up a cash for less than a day's work included Aaron Mermelstein, Antoine Saout, William Kassouf, Mike Leah and Konstantin Puchkov The event attracted 1,413 players, generating a prize pool of $1,271,700 with first place paying $223,241. Top 10 Chip Counts Dylan Linde - 562,000 Aaron Hirst - 459,000 Anton Bertilsson - 432,000 Toro Istvan - 413,000 William Foxen - 402,000 Ognien Sekularac - 395,000 Joseph Liberta - 363,000 Chris Atkinson - 340,000 Nicholas Rampone - 334,000 Yiannis Liperis - 329,000
  7. A few days ago Cary Katz contemplated skipping the opening few days of the 2018 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure altogether and flying his family to Atlanta to watch his alma mater, the University of Georgia Bulldogs, play in the NCAA Championship football game. He didn't though, and Monday night, just minutes after the game kicked off, Katz capped off an impressive three-day run to win the $100,000 Super High Roller for nearly $1.5 million. "I did think about flying to the game to watch it, but decided I'd rather watch it here with my family, even if it's not live," said Katz. "If Georgia wins, it will be the greatest night of my life for sure," said Katz. It took just 10 hands before the first player was sent packing. Bryn Kenney raised to 110,000 from UTG before Sam Greenwood moved all in from the big blind. Kenney called and tabled A♦A♥ while Greenwood showed K♣K♠. The board ran out J♠8♣6♣9♦J♣ to eliminate Greenwood in seventh place. Ivan Luca picked up the next elimination. The table folded to Luca in the small blind and he moved all in. Isaac Haxton gave some consideration to folding before eventually calling all in for 1,410,000. Luca tabled A♥4♥ while Haxton showed Q♥J♥. The K♠9♣3♣ flop gave Haxton extra outs but neither the K♣ turn or 7♣ river was any help and he was out in sixth. That hand propelled Luca to the chip lead but just two hands later, the Argentinian was shaking hands and heading to the payout window. After losing almost 1,000,000 on one hand against Kenney, Luca went to battle against the American again. Luca raised to 175,000 from the cutoff and Kenney re-raised to 635,000 from the small blind. Luca moved all in for 3,095,000 and Kenney called instantly. Luca turned over A♥J♣ and found himself in bad shape after Kenney tabled A♣K♣. The board ran out 9♦7♣3♥A♦7♥ to send Luca out in fifth place in dramatic fashion. Kenney had a small part in another elimination 28 hands later. Kenney raised to 210,000 from UTG and action folded to Daniel Negreanu in the small blind. He moved all in for 840,000, Justin Bonomo then moved all in over the top from the big blind and Kenney folded. Negreanu turned over K♥K♠ and Bonomo showed A♣J♥. Kenney told the table he folded an ace, leaving Bonomo just two more to hit. The flop came A♦5♦4♣ to put Bonomo ahead. Neither the Q♥ turn or 2♦ river were any help for Negreanu and he was forced to settle for a fourth-place result. Kenney's run eventually ended in a confrontation with Bonomo. Katz folded his button, Bonomo moved all in from the small blind and Kenney called all in from the big. Bonomo showed Q♠10♦ which put him behind Kenney's K♥9♦. The J♦10♣3♥ flop flipped the script though and Kenney was unable to catch back up after the A♥ turn or 4♠ river. The tournament ended just seven hands later. Bonomo moved all in for 3,300,000 and Katz called, having Bonomo covered. Bonomo revealed A♣K♥ while Katz had 8♣8♦. The 9♥3♠2♠ flop changed nothing and Katz remained safe through the Q♠ turn and J♥ river to eliminate Bonomo and win a second career $100,000 buy-in event. Final Table Payouts Cary Katz - $1,492,340 Justin Bonomo - $1,077,800 Bryn Kenney - $686,960 Daniel Negreanu - $521,140 Ivan Luca - $402,700 Isaac Haxton - $307,940 Sam Greenwood - $248,720
  8. Well-known high-stakes professional poker player Isaac Haxton is taking his talents to the partypoker brand. Haxton and the online poker site mutually announced that Haxton would be joining the partypoker team of ambassadors that currency includes the likes of fellow high-stake tournament grinders Jason Koon, Sam Trickett, Patrick ‘pleno1’ Leonard and Fedor Holz. “I am very excited to be joining the partypoker team,” Haxton said. “I’ve been very impressed with their growth over the last year or so. From expanding their online cash game and tournament offerings, to improving their software, and most of all rolling out their ambitions and innovative live events program, their commitment to growing the game and providing a great product for their players has been clear.” Part of the growth to which Haxton refers to is the expansion of the partypoker MILLIONS brand. The MILLIONS live tournament series is expanding in 2018. Offering six events in the calendar year, all of which carry a minimum of a $5 million guaranteed prize pool. The MILLIONS Grand Final in Barcelona in early April 2018 promises no less than $11.7 million. The jump to partypoker makes Haxton on of the few pros who have been able to switch brands as an ambassador. A former Team PokerStars Online Pro, Haxton joined PokerStars in 2012 only to leave in 2016 as part of a protest to the controversial sweeping changes the online giant made to its VIP program. Now, just over two years since he left PokerStars, Haxton begins a new sponsorship journey with partypoker. “We are delighted that Isaac is joining us at partypoker,” Tom Waters, Managing Director for partypoker said. “Isaac’s profile and experience makes him a perfect ambassador for the company. Over the years he has also demonstrated a real commitment to principles and will play a key role in helping us meet and exceed player expectations. We are in the process of building a poker site for the players and Isaac will be instrumental in helping us achieve our goals.” Haxton’s role is said to be that of a liaison between the players and the company. He will be helping to keep the lines of communications open while bringing his own voice to helping partypoker meet the needs of the players. As one of the most respected online and live players in the game, Haxton’s experience speaks for itself. He has accumulated over $15 million in live tournament earnings and currently sits ranked as #21 on the Hendon Mob All-Time Money List. Haxton will be joining his fellow ambassadors in wearing the partypoker patch during live appearances including the remaining events of Season One as well as Season Two of the partypoker MILLIONS live events.
  9. The U.S. Poker Open starts Thursday and has the potential to be one of the best events of the year. More than a handful of the best players in the world are confirmed for some, if not all, of the eight-event schedule. All participating players are worthy of previewing but we decided to cut right to the chase and look at six that stand out. Three No Limit specialists, two Mixed Game maestros and one dark horse. Bryn Kenney The 2017 American GPI Player of the Year made the majority of his over $8 million in earnings in events like the ones in USPO. Kenney, who won a Poker Masters event in 2017, is one of the betting favorites to win take home the US Poker Open Championship, which will be awarded to the best overall player. Already in 2018, Kenney is off to a strong in high rollers thanks to a third-place run in the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Super High Roller. Kenney measures himself against a high standard and the USPO is the perfect chance for him to show why he is the greatest high roller player in the world. Adrian Mateos If Kenney was the best of the high rollers in 2017, Mateos proved once again why he’s #1 in terms of all-around No Limit excellence. This year is off to an excellent start for the young Spaniard with a final table run at the PCA Main Event and two second-place finishes at the Lucky Hearts Poker Open. Mateos won his third WSOP bracelet last summer and picked up two cashes in the Poker Masters. At only 23-years-old, Mateos is already proving himself to be one of the best in the game. USPO could be the tipping point that places him at the top of the game. Jake Schindler Alongside Tom Marchese, Schindler is the co-ruler of the ARIA High Roller Series. Schindler has cashed 26 times in ARIA high roller events is second all-time on that list and earnings. The Super High Roller Bowl served as Schindler’s coming out party to a national audience and built on his dominance against the tough fields assembled at ARIA. Schindler is a quiet threat and always locked in to pick up more wins at his home away from home. Brian Rast The mixed game aspect of USPO is drawing the best all-around players to ARIA. Rast is an excellent No Limit player but also excels in all games. The two-time $50,000 Poker Players Championship winner plays literally every game in the book in Ivey’s Room at ARIA and excels in the tournament format. Rast won the inaugural Super High Roller Bowl in 2015 and is one of the most well-rounded players in the USPO field. Isaac Haxton The android brain of Haxton has optimized No Limit and Pot Limit Omaha in the online realm. Those skills have downloaded onto the live felt. Haxton consistently performs well in High Rollers across the world and is well adjusted to playing in the USPO format. The full eight-game slate in the Mixed Game Championship is fine for Haxton, who made the final table of the 2017 PPC. Almedin Imsirovic Who? Well, 'Ali', as he’s called online, is only 23-years-old as of this week but already competing and winning against the best in the world. Imsirovic entered the $25,000 high rollers at Seminole and PCA and won a $10,000 turbo to wrap up the Bahama series. He might be the one of the youngest in the field but Imsirovic’s experience of playing online for years gives him the necessary reps to take on the world’s best, making him the perfect dark horse for USPO.
  10. Take a quick look at Isaac Haxton's live tournament results over the past few years and you might be surprised by the lack of first place finishes. Considered by many on the high roller scene to be one of the best poker players on the planet, Haxton hasn't won a tournament since January 2017. Haxton's streak of 32 High Roller event cashes without a win came to an end on Tuesday though as Haxton took down Event #4 ($10,000 Short Deck Hold'em) of the 2018 Poker Masters. The win, coupled with a sixth and a fourth place finish in two previous Poker Masters events, have put Haxton just 30 points behind Brandon Adams for the Purple Jacket. “It would be very satisfying to win this whole thing, I have a track record of doing pretty well, but with a lot of second through fifth-place finishes," said Haxton. "Actually winning something is very satisfying.” Dominik Nitsche started the final table with a narrow chip lead over Andrew Robl, but just 45 minutes after the final table began, Nitsche was on his way to the payouts window with the sixth place ticket. Nitsche open-shoved for 1,440,000 with [poker card="jd"][poker card="jh"] from first position, Isaac Haxton re-shoved for 3,180,000 with [poker card="td"][poker card="ts"] from the cutoff and after some time, Andrew Robl folded [poker card="th"][poker card="9h"] from the button. The board ran out [poker card="qs"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7c"][poker card="9d"][poker card="6c"] to give Haston a rivered ten-high straight and eliminate Nitsche in sixth with a $33,000 payout. Some 40 minutes later, Haxton found yet another victim. Cary Katz limped from early position with [poker card="kh"][poker card="qh"] and Haxton moved all in for 3,880,000 behind him with [poker card="ad"][poker card="tc"]. When action folded back to him, Catz called. The [poker card="qc"][poker card="9c"][poker card="6s"] flop was a friendly one for Katz, but the [poker card="ah"] turn put Haxton back in the lead. The [poker card="ts"] river gave Haxton an unnecessary two pair and eliminated Katz in fifth for $44,000. Robl spent the next 30 minutes working a short stack and despite two straight double ups, found no further success. Robl open-shoved for 900,000 with [poker card="td"][poker card="9c"] and Ryan Tosoc moved all in over the for 3,970,000 with [poker card="qc"][poker card="js"], forcing the rest of the table to fold. The [poker card="qh"][poker card="qs"][poker card="th"] flop put Tosoc in the driver's seat and the [poker card="jd"] gave him a full house to eliminate Robl. The fourth place finish came with a $55,000 score. Tosoc, Haxton and Maurice Hawkins battled for almost a full hour before finding the next elimination. Tosoc was down to just 490,000 and decided to open shove with [poker card="ac"][poker card="th"] but Haxton called with [poker card="ah"][poker card="jd"] and stayed ahead through the [poker card="ks"][poker card="qc"][poker card="qh"][poker card="8h"][poker card="7s"] runout to bust Tosoc in third for $77,000. Despite never having played short deck before and having zero Poker Masters cashes to his credit, Hawkins got heads up with Haxton with the chip lead. Unfortunately for the 11-time WSOP Circuit ring winner, that's as far as he could go. Hawkins open-shoved 4,775,000 with [poker card="9d"][poker card="7d"] and Haxton called with [poker card="ac"][poker card="qd"]. The [poker card="ad"][poker card="8c"][poker card="8h"] flop kept Haxton in the lead but also gave Hawkins a straight draw. The [poker card="kc"] changed nothing and when the [poker card="qh"] completed the board, Haxton eliminated Hawkins to win his first Poker Masters title and $176,000. Final Table Payouts Isaac Haxton - $176,000 Maurice Hawkins - $115,500 Ryan Tosoc - $77,000 Andrew Robl - $55,000 Cary Katz - $44,000 Dominik Nitsche - $33,000
  11. The final table of Event #3 ($25,000 Pot Limit Omaha) of the 2018 Poker Masters was headlined by Brandon Adams making his third straight final table appearance but by the end of it all, two-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Keith Lehr stood tall to claim the win. Adams, who finished fourth in Event #1 and then won Event #2, and Lehr were joined at the final table by Dan Shak, Ben Yu, Jonathan Depa, and Isaac Haxton. It took nearly three hours before the first elimination on Monday. From UTG, Dan Shak raised to 140,000 with [poker card="9d"][poker card="7d"][poker card="3c"][poker card="2c"] before Jonathan Depa re-raised to 480,000 with [poker card="kd"][poker card="kh"][poker card="4s"][poker card="2s"] and Shak called all in. The board ran out [poker card="qh"][poker card="qs"][poker card="9s"][poker card="ad"][poker card="4c"] to eliminate Shak in sixth place. Even though he came into the final table with the second biggest chip stack, Brandon Adams fell short in his run for back-to-back titles thanks to Ben Yu. Action folded to Yu on the button and he raised to 175,000 with [poker card="ac"][poker card="qs"][poker card="qh"][poker card="4h"] and Adams called from the big blind with [js[poker card="th"][poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"]. Adams then checked after the [poker card="td"][poker card="5d"][poker card="5h"] flop and Yu bet 125,000. Adams tanked for nearly a full minute, using a time bank in the process, before moving all in for 715,000. Yu called. The [poker card="4s"] turn and [poker card="4c"] river actually improved Yu's hand and eliminated Adams. It took almost a full hour before the next elimination happened. Isaac Haxton raised to 280,000 from the button with [poker card="ac"][poker card="qh"][poker card="9s"][poker card="3c"] and Jonathan Depa defended the big blind with [poker card="jc"][poker card="tc"][poker card="7d"][poker card="4d"]. The [poker card="qs"][poker card="6s"][poker card="5d"] was followed by a bet from Depa and an all in call from Haxton. The turn was the [poker card="jh"] and the river was the [poker card="th"] to give Depa runner-runner two pair to send Haxton out in fourth. Ben Yu lasted just one more hand. Yu raised to 280,000 with [poker card="as"][poker card="7c"][poker card="7s"][poker card="6d"] on the button and Lehr defended his big blind with [poker card="qs"][poker card="9d"][poker card="8c"][poker card="6s"]. Lehr checked the [poker card="jc"][poker card="th"][poker card="9s"] flop to Yu and then snap-called Yu's shove. The turn was the [poker card="jh"] and the river was the [poker card="8d"] and Yu was out in third. Heads-up play started with Depa holding less than a single big blind more than Lehr and took just 20 minutes to get to a winner. Now down 3-1 in chips, Depa completed from the button with [poker card="7h"][poker card="4h"][poker card="3s"][poker card="2s"] and Lehr checked his option with [poker card="ks"][poker card="jh"][poker card="8d"][poker card="5d"] to send both players to a [poker card="js"][poker card="3d"][poker card="2h"] flop. Lehr bet 240,000 and Depa raised to 720,000. Lehr announced he was all in and Depa called and found out he was ahead with two pair. The [poker card="8c"] turn flipped the script though and gave Lehr a bigger two pair. The [poker card="5s"] river changed nothing and Lehr eliminated Depa to claim his first career Poker Masters title. Final Table Payouts Keith Lehr - $333,000 Jonathan Depa - $222,000 Ben Yu - $148,000 Isaac Haxton - $92,500 Brandon Adams - $74,000 Dan Shak - $55,500 With his fifth-place finish, Adams continues to lead the overall points standings for the Poker Masters title and accompanying Purple Jacket. Poker Masters Standings Through Event #3 Brandon Adams - 510 Keith Lehr - 300 David Peters - 300 Jared Jaffee - 210 Jonathan Depa - 210 Brian Green - 210 Isaac Haxton - 180 Jake Schindler - 150 Ben Yu - 150 Rainer Kempe - 150
  12. Lot. Of. Action. Tuesday’s schedule in the partypoker POWERFEST was one of the most loaded yet, with two $10,300 Super High Rollers as well as ten other events in the High and High Roller tiers. When all was said and done, the day belonged to “mbtremendo”. He or she outlasted a 208-strong field full of the game’s best players to win Event #108 Super High Roller: $10,300 No Limit Hold’em Championship Event for a massive $424,112. The final table also included “Alien_Army”, who finished second for $307,840. He or she already won a title this POWERFEST, when they took down Event #082-HR: $200K Gtd PKO Mix-Max on Day 13 for $20,515 plus $5,434 in bounties. Over in the other Super High Roller, Event #112 Super High Roller: $10,300 Pot Limit Omaha Six-Max Championship Event, it was “MysterioBrown” who emerged victorious. They overcame a tough final table which included partypoker ambassadors Jason Koon (2nd) and Isaac Haxton (3rd) to bank $303,421.82. Two players made multiple final tables last night. “petdet3ctive” placed fifth in Event #112 High Roller: $530 Pot Limit Omaha Six-Max for $3,281.25, as well as picking up a third-place finish in Event #113 High Roller: $530 No Limit Hold’em Fast Six-Max Progressive knock-out for $6,075 plus $1,189 in bounties. Chris "therealmoorm" Moorman finished fifth in that one for $3,240 + $1,066. Meanwhile, “Doyle_B” was also having a busy night. He or she finished third in Event #107 High: $215 No Limit Hold’em Six-Max for $11,510.10, and followed that up later in the evening with another final table in Event #114 High: $109 No Limit Hold’em Turbo, finishing fifth for $1,560. Bulgria’s “SUPERSCOUSER” also took down a title, winning the Event #110 High Roller: $1,050 No Limit Hold’em for $80,675 after a heads-up chop against "TheFatMexican" ($80,675). Other winners on the day include “BateBicoPLZ”, “BateBicoPLZ”, “Watdaf”, “LaheyRandy”, “zanzibazaar”, “JaegsEZ”, “BucketsOfRain”, “CemboUnchained”, and “YOUgoValhalla”. Event #107 High: $215 No Limit Hold’em Six-Max Entries: 567 Prize pool: $113,400 BateBicoPLZ - $21,262.67 MaXiMuSpkr - $15,341.65 Doyle_B - $11,510.10 Al_Magellan - $8,108.10 WhoDatt. - $5,670 KONY2012 - $3,402 Event #109 High Roller: $530 No Limit Hold’em Mix-Max Progressive knock-out Entries: 557 Prize pool: $300,000 NinjasHyper - $24,967.25* + $13,650 whofish11 - $24,673.83* + $11,930 SandaiKitetsu - $15,609.43 + $5,619 TigerVSyou - $10,995.80 + $4,880 Soupstyles - $7,689.37 + $3,662 faker432 - $4,613.62 + $5,988 Event #109 High: $109 No Limit Hold’em Mix-Max Progressive knock-out Entries: 1,614 Prize pool: $200,000 Watdaf - $16,374.99 + $9,163 holyguacamole - $11,848.62 + $3,167 batataxpp - $9,027.52 + $2,451 walkom - $6,488.53 + $967 Thanan36 - $4,400.91 + $597 whresmymind - $2,538.99 + $269 Event #108 Super High Roller: $10,300 No Limit Hold’em Championship Event Entries: 208 Prize pool: $2,080,000 mbtremendo - $424,112 Alien_Army - $307,840 ChanceSeeYou - $219,440 p0kchkmonsta - $162,240 PhileasFogg - $114,400 PlayingOnlyNuts - $87,360 MoNddLeR - $64,480 Mar10k4rt3n - $47,840 Event #110 High Roller: $1,050 No Limit Hold’em Entries: 495 Prize pool: $500,000 SUPERSCOUSER - $80,675* TheFatMexican - $80,675* Welsh187 - $46,000 polariced - $32,000 getmechips - $22,700 probirs - $16,500 NHONHOj6 - $11,750 Hahaha_Owned - $8,500 Event #110 High: $215 No Limit Hold’em Entries: 923 Prize pool: $200,000 LaheyRandy - $34,960 AstraIncognita - $24,960 Aldeberan90 - $16,620 BowserPT - $11,200 slime16 - $7,900 Wacko90 - $5,660 lippyagain - $4,000 Sa11y - $2,780 Event #112 Super High Roller: $10,300 Pot Limit Omaha Six-Max Championship Event Entries: 97 Prize pool: $970,000 MysterioBrown - $303,421.82 Jason_Koon - $189,150 Ike_Haxton - $116,400 Drulitooo - $84,875 VolkZok_ - $60,625 KingJamesMVP - $41,225 Event #112 High Roller: $530 Pot Limit Omaha Six-Max Entries: 105 Prize pool: $52,500 zanzibazaar - $16,422.33 slashman888 - $10,237.50 NoOnionsBlud - $6,300 Sr.Coluna - $4,593.75 petdet3ctive - $3,281.25 Badhandman24 - $2,231.25 Event #112 High: $109 Pot Limit Omaha Six-Max Entries: 123 Prize pool: $12,300 JaegsEZ - $3,098.46 CozzysDAman - $2,091 TeddybearCub1 - $1,476 cantwinapot89 - $1,045.50 ICELANDSnr1 - $768.75 DIKKEKARPER - $510.45 Event #113 High Roller: $530 No Limit Hold’em Fast Six-Max Progressive knock-out Entries: 216 Prize pool: $110,700 BucketsOfRain - $13,449.60 + $14,710 katoquny209 - $8,640 + $4,450 petdet3ctive - $6,075 + $1,189 prebzzz - $4,401 + $2,723 Therealmoorm - $3,240 + $1,066 RipRising - $2,160 + $1,443 Event #113 High: $109 No Limit Hold’em Fast Six-Max Progressive knock-out Entries: 702 Prize pool: $75,000 CemboUnchained - $6,306.18 + $5,649 IEatBears - $4,821.96 + $1,668 JusaFromUsa - $3,523.74 + $918 cbk6866 - $2,524.77 + $511 n1ceFTW - $1,761.87 + $1,212 MrWayland - $1,112.76 + $567 Event #114 High: $109 No Limit Hold’em Turbo Entries: 295 Prize pool: $30,000 YOUgoValhalla - $5,970 ANCHOAZO - $4,320 F.Bulsara - $3,030 T-BAGGIN_Felt - $2,205 Doyle_B - $1,560 birgu1530 - $1,170
  13. The record-setting WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic wrapped up at Bellagio in Las Vegas, with the $10,400 Main Event attracting a huge field of 1,001 entries and featuring some of poker's biggest names. In addition to the Main Event, the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule featured several events with five-figure buy-ins and one with a six-figure price of entry. Here are the winners from a tremendous week of poker in Sin City. The biggest winners overall from these high buy-in events, excluding the $10,400 Main Event, were Jake Schindler, Jason Koon, Seth Davies, Chris Hunichen, and Dominik Nitsche. Although he didn't earn the most money, it's certainly worth noting that Sam Soverel cashed in four of these events for a total of $314,500. No one else cashed in more than two. Ladines Wins First $10,000 PLO Event The first two high roller events on the schedule were both $10,000 buy-in pot-limit Omaha tournaments. The first one attracted 35 entries for a $350,000 prize pool and saw the top five places make the money. Joshua Ladines took the event’s title and $128,090 top prize, with both Brian Rast and Sam Soverel finishing in the money. Joshua Ladines - $128,090 John Riordan - $102,910 Jonathan Abdellatif - $56,000 Brian Rast - $35,000 Sam Soverel - $28,000 Soverel Takes Second $10,000 PLO Event In the second $10,000 PLO event, a group of familiar faces was back in the money. Soverel topped the field of 29 entries to win the title and $116,000, Ladines finished third for $46,400, and WPT Five Diamond wonder boy Ryan Tosoc scored fifth for $23,200. Tosoc notably finished second in the Season XV WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic for $1.134 million before going on to win the event in Season XVI for $1.958 million. Sam Soverel - $116,000 Jonathan Depa - $75,400 Joshua Ladines- $46,400 Michael Song - $29,000 Ryan Tosoc - $23,200 Hennigan Captures $10,000 8-Game Mixed Title If you know Bellagio, you know it’s home to the most iconic high-stakes poker room in the world, Bobby’s Room. It’s where the game’s elite compete for astronomical cash-game stakes, but during WPT Five Diamond some of those players shifted their focus to tournament play, specifically in the $10,000 buy-in 8-Game Mixed High Roller. The tournament generated 24 entries, and it was none other than five-time World Series of Poker gold bracelet winner and WPT Champions Club member John Hennigan taking home the top prize of $110,400. John Hennigan - $110,400 Ben Yu - $67,200 Randy Ohel - $38,400 John Racener - $24,000 Loeser and Fox Chop First $25,000 High Roller In the first of three $25,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournaments on this year’s WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic slate, 42 entries were generated to create a prize pool of $1.05 million. The top six places paid, and the top two spots went to Manig Loeser and Elio Fox in a chop that earned each player more than $300,000. Loeser scored first place for $321,300, and Fox took second for $308,700. Manig Loeser- $321,300 Elio Fox - $308,700 Jake Schindler - $168,000 Dan Smith - $105,000 Cary Katz - $84,000 Nick Petrangelo - $63,000 Petrangelo Wins Second $25,000 High Roller The second $25,000 buy-in tournament attracted 47 entries and generated a $1.175 million prize pool. The top seven places reached the money, with several notables cashing. None earned more than Nick Petrangelo, though, who chopped the event heads up with Sergio Aido to take home the winning prize of $289,944. Aido scored $287,634 for second. Petrangelo was coming off a sixth-place result for $63,000 in the first $25,000 event of this series. Soverel, who finished in the money of the first two high rollers on the schedule, including winning one for $116,000, finished sixth in this event for $70,500. Nick Petrangelo - $289,944 Sergio Aido - $287,634 Seth Davies - $256,672 Ben Yu - $117,500 Kazuhiko Yotsushika - $94,000 Sam Soverel - $70,500 Rainer Kempe - $58,750 Davies Victorious in Third $25,000 High Roller The third and final $25,000 high roller tournament on the WPT Five Diamond schedule drew 50 entries for a $1.25 million prize pool. The top eight places reached the money, and it was Seth Davies taking the title and $341,920 in first-place prize money. The win came just days after Davies took third in the previous $25,000 high roller event during the series of $256,672, as you can see above. Davies did a deal with Isaac Haxton in second place, who earned $320,580. The money was filled with notable high rollers, including Alex Foxen taking third for $175,000. Foxen has had himself quite a 2018 and is closing it strong both on the live felt and the virtual felt. In the online world, Foxen recently achieved a new all-time high in the top 100 of the PocketFives Online Poker Rankings. You'll also notice Soverel's name appearing in the in-the-money places once again, this time for fifth place, worth $100,000. Seth Davies - $341,920 Isaac Haxton - $320,580 Alex Foxen - $175,000 David Peters - $125,000 Sam Soverel - $100,000 Christoph Vogelsang - $75,000 Rainer Kempe - $62,500 Elio Fox: $50,000 Schindler Defeats Koon for $100,000 Super High Roller Victory The final big buy-in event from the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule this year was the $100,000 Super High Roller. The event drew 37 entries to Bellagio for a $3.7 million prize pool and the top six spots reached the money. Earning the $1.332 million first-place prize was Jake Schindler. Adding that score to the $168,000 he won earlier in the series for taking third place in one of the $25,000 high rollers, Schindler scored $1.5 million in prize money at Bellagio this December. Schindler beat out Jason Koon for the win, and Koon took home $888,000 for his second-place finish. Jake Schindler - $1,332,000 Jason Koon - $888,000 Chris Hunichen - $592,000 Dominik Nitsche - $370,000 Ben Tollerene - $296,000 Talal Shakerchi - $222,000
  14. It's going a very high roller holiday season as Poker Central has announced that the return of the Super High Roller Bowl will be sooner than expected. The fifth edition of one of the most prestigious high roller tournaments of the year now takes place from December 17-19 at the PokerGO Studio at the Aria Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. The change to hold the newly dubbed Super High Roller Bowl V during the holiday season is a break of recent tradition for Poker Central. Over the past three years, the SHRB was played in late May, acting as an appetite-whetter for the World Series of Poker. Many expected the next tournament to be held at the same time in 2019. The move to December now takes advantage of the popular World Poker Tour Five Diamond schedule while simultaneously closing out the high roller circuit year with its biggest event. The upcoming December event will have many of the same specifics as the previous event held just six months ago. The $300,000 rake-free buy-in will generate a $14,400,000 prize pool with a $5 million first-place prize and championship ring for the winner. With a 48 seat cap, players who wish to have a shot at a seat need to place their $30,000 deposit by Monday, November 26. For those that do put down a deposit, there will be a live-streamed lottery on PokerGO to award players a seat into the tournament. The ARIA reserves eighteen of the 48 seats for ARIA VIP guests. Tournament officials will hand out these seats at their discretion. The five remaining seats are awarded to the top five players in Aria’s 2018 High Roller of the Year rankings. The current points system will be in place right up until the lottery for Super High Roller Bowl V. Currently the five players with the most points include Poker Central founder Cary Katz, Sam Soverel, Jake Schindler, David Peters, and Isaac Haxton. Poker Masters Champion Ali Imsirovic sits just outside the top five in sixth place with regular high rollers Adrian Mateos and Dan Smith not far behind. According to the Poker Central website, there are currently seven more opportunities for the high roller community to accumulate points. High roller events are taking place every day from October 31-November 6. “In its first five years of existence, Super High Roller Bowl has grown into one of the most exclusive and highly coveted poker championships in the world as the pinnacle of the High Roller Triple Crown,” said Vice President of Content for Poker Central, Sam Simmons. “We’re proud to celebrate that milestone in December, as we implement changes that will continue the success of the event for many years to come.” It just six months ago that Justin Bonomo won the previous Super High Roller Bowl for $5 million. The win was a significant contribution to Bonomo ascending to become the new leader of the All-Time Money List. He currently sits with over $43 million in career earnings. Daniel Negreanu finished as the 2018 runner-up, taking home $3 million for his efforts. The PokerGO platform will stream all of the Super High Roller Bowl. Additionally, the NBC Sports Network will air episodes on their website and the NBC Sports App. Super High Roller Bowl History Year Entries Winner Amount Won Prize Pool 2015 43 Brian Rast $7,525,000 $21,500,000 2016 49 Rainer Kempe $5,000,000 $15,000,000 2017 56 Christoph Vogelsang $6,000,000 $16,800,000 2018 48 Justin Bonomo $5,000,000 $14,400,000
  15. As 2018 winds down, PocketFives is taking you a trip down memory lane with a month-by-month year in review. We get things started with January and a trip the Bahamas. Vanessa Selbst Calls It Quits Word actually broke in the closing hours of 2017, but the talk around Vanessa Selbst retiring from poker carried on into the early days of 2018. Selbst, the all-time leading female money winner, announced her decision to retire via a Facebook post. In that post, she explained that she had taken a job with a New York-based hedge fund and had already been working there for a few months. Selbst did indicate that she wasn't done entirely with the game though. "To me, the opportunity to work hard and learn something totally new and get to keep poker in my arsenal of fun go-to hobbies feels like the right approach,” Selbst wrote. Selbst lived up to her word, showing up to play the World Poker Tour Lucky Hearts Poker Open in late January. READ: Vanessa Selbst Retires From Poker Maria Lampropulos Wins PCA Main Event; Cary Katz Tops $100K High Roller The first major poker tournament of 2018 was the return of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. The PCA was brought back after PokerStars' failed rebranding of all of their live events as PokerStars Live Championships. The PCA Main Event brought out 582 players for a total prize pool of $5,645,400. The final table included Adrian Mateos, Koray Aldamir, Shawn Buchanan and Maria Lampropulos. The tournament came down to an epic heads-up battle between Buchanan and Lampropulos with the Argentinian pro taking it down for her second major title in a 10-month span. READ: PCA: Maria Lampropulos Wins Main Event, $1.08M, Platinum Pass At a final table that included the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Justin Bonomo, Isaac Haxton, Bryn Kenney and Sam Greenwood, PokerGO founder Cary Katz managed to outlast all of them to win the $100,000 buy-in Super High Roller for the first major title of his career. READ: PCA: Cary Katz Wins $100K Super High Roller Platinum Passes Galore in the Bahamas The PCA was also the launching for what would become PokerStars' year-long campaign to award nearly 300 Platinum Passes worth $30,000 each that give the pass holder entry into the 2019 PokerStars Players Championship. Lampropulos picked one up for her victory in the PCA Main Event, author Maria Konnikova also grabbed one for taking down the PCA National Championship and David Peters won his via a random draw. Pennsylvania-based grinder Thai Ha was the fortunate winner of a Platinum Pass on Day 2 of the Main Event, but he almost missed it after oversleeping. READ: Thai Ha Almost Misses Out on Platinum Pass Winning Moment While Lampropulos, Konnikova, and Peters are all established players who may have played the PSPC anyways, Steven-John Jost is the polar opposite. The Swiss amateur qualified for the 2018 PCA Main Event on PokerStars for $27 and ended up cashing for $17,500. By finishing in the money, Jost was also given a raffle ticket for a Platinum Pass and he ended up having his name drawn. “I was really shaking. Now I’m calm. I had to go for a drink and now I’m relaxed, just enjoying it,” Jost said after learning he'd won the $30,000 package. READ: Steven-John Jost’s ‘Dream Come True’ Topped Off with Platinum Pass Ole Schemion and Darryll Fish Pick Up WPT Titles The World Poker Tour added two well-known names to the WPT Champions Cup in January. Germany's Ole Schemion beat out 338 other players to win the €3,300 WPT European Championship at Spielbank Berlin. The win earned Schemion $260,858 and he finished 2018 within spitting distance of $15,000,000 in career earnings. READ: Ole Schemion Wins WPT European Championship Meanwhile, on the other side of the Atlantic, one of poker's most well-respected grinders finally picked up a major title. Darryll Fish topped the 911-player field to win the WPT Lucky Hearts Poker Open for $511,604. It was a career-best cash for Fish at the time, only to be eclipsed a few months later when he finished second in the partypoker MILLIONS North America Main Event for $ 937,221. READ: Darryll Fish Wins Lucky Hearts Open for First WPT Title, $511K partypoker Adds Isaac Haxton as Ambassador To say that Isaac Haxton's departure from Team PokerStars was messy, might be an understatement. Haxton left PokerStars in the wake of the changes the online poker giant made to its player rewards system and took special joy in being a thorn in their side via social media ever since. That thorn got a little bit bigger when Haxton signed on as an ambassador with partypoker. Haxton noted that partypoker's growth, both online and live, was a big part of his decision to sign with them. “I’ve been very impressed with their growth over the last year or so. From expanding their online cash game and tournament offerings, to improving their software, and most of all rolling out their ambitions and innovative live events program, their commitment to growing the game and providing a great product for their players has been clear,” Haxton said. READ: Isaac Haxton Joins partypoker as Brand Ambassador Sweden's 'lena900' Tops January PLB Race Anybody who follows the PocketFives Rankings will know that the Swedish players have dominated them for years. So it's no surprise to learn that one of the most successful Swedish players started 2018 off with a bang. 'lena900' topped the January PLB thanks ‘lena900’ to eight five-figure scores and a win in the partypoker Powerfest Event #5 for $26,899 and 328.63 PLB points. READ: Swedish Crusher ‘lena900’ Wins January PLB Title
  16. Inaugural Poker Masters Champion Steffen Sontheimer entered the final day of the partypoker $250,000 Super High Roller Championships with both the chip lead and an eye on taking home a new career-high score. Sontheimer leveraged that chip lead for the entirety of the final table, never relinquishing the chip lead and, in the end, he earned the mammoth $3,685,000 first place prize, besting a table of poker’s elite in the process. At the beginning of play only six players of the original 35 entries remained. Sontheimer was joined by partypoker ambassador Isaac Haxton, Nick Petrangelo, David Peters, Sean Winter, and Mikita Badziakouski. Of the remaining six, only four made the money. After the elimination of Haxton in sixth place, it was time to sweat the massive $710,000 money bubble. After mixing it up with chip leader Sontheimer, Petrangelo was left with a short stack and not many moves left. Sontheimer opened the action with [ah][5s] which prompted a three-bet shove from Petrangelo with [as][ks]. It folded to Peters in the small blind who four-bet shoved holding [js][jd]. Sontheimer folded and Petrangelo was flipping for his tournament life. The board ran out [th][9d][2d][4c][8s] giving Peters the pot and eliminating Petrangelo as the last player to walk without a payday. The final four including Sontheimer, Peters, Winter and Badziakouski battled four-handed for hours as Sontheimer continued put distance between himself and the other three. Winter managed to make a little headway as Peters and Badziakotuski’s stacks drifted downwards. The next elimination occurred when, in a blind on blind confrontation, Winter open shipped from the small blind with [ah][qd]. Badziakouski, with just over ten big blinds left, called with his tournament life on the line with [kd][jc]. The [ac][9h][2h] flop gave Winter a virtual lock on the hand. While the [kh] turn gave Badziakouski some life, the river came the [3d], sending Badziakouski to the rail in fourth place. Badziakouski collected the $710,000 payday and added it to his current $20 million total live earnings. In 2018 alone, Badziakouski has earned over $13.8 million in live tournaments, second only to Justin Bonomo. Peters, who was now left on the bottom of the chip counts, exited next. Facing a raise by Sontheimer, Peters looked down at [kh][qc]. He moved all in over the top from the small blind only to be snap called by Sontheimer and his [ah][kc]. The flop came [9d][5c][5d] keeping Sontheimer in the lead. The [kd] turn paired both players, however, the [6s] sealed Peters fate and he fell in third place for $1,420,000. The sum lifted Peters to over $9 million in earnings for 2018. It also allowed Peters to pass Dan Colman on the All-Time Money List and enter the top-5. At the start of heads-up play Sontheimer held a 2-1 chip lead over Winter. A pre-flop cooler made sure that what could have been a long battle, ended the tournament only 30 minutes into heads-up play. The final hand saw Winter limp the button with [ac][qh]. Sontheimer then raised from the big blind with [ah][kh]. Winter three-bet, Sontheimer shoved and Winter snap called for the rest of his stack. Dominated, Winter was going to need some help. It did not come as the board ran out [ts][5d][3h][4s][9h]. Winter finished the tournament as the runner-up, earning a career-high cash of $2,430,000. It was his second runner-up finish in as many days as he also finished in second place in the partypoker $50,000 Super High Roller for $550,000. With the win, Sontheimer earned himself his third seven-figure live cash and a career-high score of $3,685,000. The victory pushes his total live earnings up over $12.5 million in lifetime earnings. Final Table Results 1. Steffen Sontheimer - $3,685,000 2. Sean Winter - $2,430,000 3. David Peters - $1,420,000 4. Mikita Badziakouski - $710,000
  17. One might think that with the holidays on the horizon December would be a quiet month of people spending time with their family. Not for the world of poker. December 2018 was full of record-breaking tournaments and huge headlines. Here are some of the names that made the news in December. Dan Smith Makes A Difference For the past five years, regular high-roller Dan Smith has been collecting donations for various charities at Christmas time. This year, Smith and his collaborators amassed $1.29M for the Double Up Drive and that they would use to match donations to spread to 10 carefully cultivated charities. They nearly got that amount in a single day when DFS champion Tom Crowley promised to give 50% of any winnings he might make from the DraftKings World Championship Final. Crowley, known as ‘ChipotleAddict’, went on to win the event for $2 million and over the weekend hauled in a total of $2.254 - half of which was donated to the Double Up Drive. The donation was ‘surreal’ but Smith wants to make sure people knew that donations of any size are welcome. “I want to clarify that any amount makes a difference,” Smith told PocketFives. “People in Uganda are living off 65 cents a day, an amount we don’t even consider at all.” READ: Dan Smith Charity Drive Gets “Surreal” $1.1M Donation via DFS Champ Isaac Haxton Wins Super High Roller Bowl V The fifth edition of the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl saw Isaac Haxton best the field of 36 elite players to earn a career-high cash of $3.672 million dollars. “This is easily the best tournament result I’ve ever had and it’s an event I love. It feels great to win here at ARIA. This is the highlight of my tournament career, no doubt,” said Haxton after the win. The final table was replete with talent including Poker Masters champion Ali Imsirovic, Igor Kurganov, Adrian Mateos, Talal Shakerchi, Stephen Chidwick, and eventual runner-up Alex Foxen. Foxen took home a career-best $2.1 million for his second-place finish. This capped off an amazing year that saw him earn 12 cashes of six-figures or better as well as rise to become the #1-ranked player on the GPI. READ: Isaac Haxton Wins Super High Roller Bowl for $3.672 Million READ: Alex Foxen’s Drive Takes Him to the Super High Roller Bowl The World Series of Poker Releases 2019 Dates Just before Christmas the World Series of Poker delivered players an early present by announcing a partial schedule of the 2019 WSOP. This summer will be the 50th anniversary for the longest-running tournament series and to help commemorate the occasion the WSOP is planning a number of special events for the players. The schedule included the announcement of the ‘Big 50’, a $500 buy-in tournament with a $5 million guaranteed prize pool and a $1 million guarantee for first place. Additionally, in an extra effort to “make the 2019 WSOP a better value all-around” many of the marquee events of the summer have an increased starting stack. This includes the WSOP Main Event which is increasing their starting stack to 60,000. READ: WSOP Releases 2019 Dates, New ‘Big 50’ Event - $500 Buy-in, $5M GTD Dylan Linde Wins WPT Five Diamond for $1.6 Million The crypto crash of 2018 has some in the industry fearing that the numbers for the World Poker Tour’s highlight event, the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic, might see a dip in registration. However, just the opposite happened as players flocked to the Bellagio in record-setting numbers. The event attracted 1001 runners and generated a prize pool of $9.7 million. In the end, longtime poker pro Dylan ‘ImaLucSac’ Linde (who re-entered five times in the event) dominated a stacked final table that included Andrew Lichtenberger, Ping Liu, Lisa Hamilton, Barry Hutter and runner-up Milos Skrbic. Linde won a career-high $1.6 million and earned the title of WPT Champion. READ: Dylan Line Wins Record-Shattering WPT Five Diamond Title for $1.6 Million Manuel ‘Sheparentao’ Ruvio, Pim ‘ForMatherRussia’ De Goede Chop 2018 partypoker MILLIONS Online. partypoker’s 2018 $20M GTD MILLIONS Online did not disappoint. The incredible online tournament surpassed its posted guarantee and set the record for the largest single online tournament in history with players vying for a first place prize of over $2.6M. In the end, after one hand of heads-up play, Manuel ‘Sheparentao’ Ruvio and PocketFiver Pim ‘ForMatherRussia’ De Goede settled on a lightning-fast chop that awarded both players over $2.3M. Rubio, technically, earned the victory, taking home $20K more than De Goede and now owns the record for the single largest online payday in history. READ: Manuel ‘Sheparentao’ Ruvio and Pim ‘ForMatherRussia’ De Goede Chop partypoker MILLIONS Online A December To Remember December was just one of those month’s where huge news seemed to break every day. Here are some of the other must-read major headlines in December. Michigan opens its doors to online poker. READ: Michigan Becomes Fifth State to Regulate Online Poker The poker world loses a legend in the passing of Thor Hansen. READ: Thor Hansen Passes Away at 71 The pitch black bathroom bet comes to an abrupt end. READ: The $100K Bathroom Prop Ends Early; Alati, Young Agree on $62K Buyout Bay 101’s Shooting Star returns without the WPT behind it. READ: After a Year Away, Bay 101 Shooting Star Returns With New Look
  18. The fifth edition of the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl crowned its champion on Wednesday night, with Isaac Haxton topping the exclusive field of 36 entries to earn the $3.672 million prize. "I just feel f***ing great," Haxton said in the moments following the big win. "I'm just super happy, even a little relieved it's over. Obviously, a day like today is pretty stressful, in the best way." With the victory, Haxton moved to more than $23.65 million in live tournament earnings, which bumps him up ahead of Jake Schindler and into 13th place on poker's all-time money list. "I'm gonna have more than a couple drinks and probably eat at least 1,500 calories of something disgusting," Haxton said about his plans to celebrate, with a smile of course. "That should do it, and then hopefully sleep for about 12 hours. That would be a perfect victory party for me." Super High Roller Bowl V Results 1st: Isaac Haxton - $3,672,000 2nd: Alex Foxen - $2,160,000 3rd: Stephen Chidwick - $1,512,000 4th: Talal Shakerchi - $1,188,000 5th: Adrian Mateos - $972,000 6th: Igor Kurganov - $756,000 7th: Ali Imsirovic - $540,000 For the past three days, the PokerGO Studio at ARIA Resort & Casino in Las Vegas played host to the high-stakes affair that attracted the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Fedor Holz, and Justin Bonomo, just to name a few. After Monday’s Day 1, 27 players remained. After Day 2, just seven were left, all in the money and guaranteed a $540,000 payday. Bubbling the money in eighth place was Mikita Badziakouski. Haxton started the final table as the chip leader and Ali Imsirovic was bringing up the rear with the shortest stack left. After starting the final table with 875,000 and blinds of 10,000/15,000 with a 15,000 big blind ante, Imsirovic worked his way to nearly 1.9 million before taking a dive in the other direction that ultimately resulted with his seventh-place elimination. Imsirovic lost a pot to Stephen Chidwick that knocked him all the way back down to 520,000 and then got the last of his stack in with pocket jacks against the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="5c"] of Haxton. Haxton flopped a flush draw and hit it on the turn to knock out the 23-year-old in seventh. Next to go was Igor Kurganov, who was never able to get any real momentum going on the final day. On his final hand, Kurganov, on the button, moved all in for 350,000 over the top of a raise to 65,000 from Chidwick with the blinds at 15,000/30,000 with a 30,000 big blind ante. Talal Shakerchi reraised all in from the small blind and Chidwick folded. Shakerchi had pocket tens to Kurganov’s pocket sevens, and the board ran out [poker card="9d"][poker card="8h"][poker card="5h"][poker card="4c"][poker card="Ac"] to send Kurganov home in sixth place. Shakerchi continued to climb after he busted Kurganov and even worked his way into the chip lead, but then he started to slide the other way as Alex Foxen increased. Adrian Mateos was next out the door when he was eliminated in fifth place by Foxen, falling in the 25,000/50,000 level with a big blind ante of 50,000. Mateos raised and then four-bet all in with pocket nines against Foxen, who made the call with the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Ks"]. Foxen flopped a king and held from there to send the young Spaniard to collect his $972,000 payout. With Foxen out in front by a large margin and Haxton in second place, the final four players moved into Level 21 with the blinds at 30,000/60,000 with a 60,000 big blind ante. Shortly after the level went up, Shakerchi went out, and he was busted by Haxton. Haxton opened to 140,000 and Shakerchi reraised all in for 1.285 million. Haxton called with two nines and won the flip against Shakerchi's [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Td"]. Shakerchi collected $1.118 million for his finish. Not too long after, Haxton added another chunk of chips when he busted Chidwick in third place. The two got the money in a blind-versus-blind situation, with Chidwick on the ropes holding the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Qh"] to Haxton’s pocket jacks. To make matters worse for Chidwick, Haxton flopped top set to leave him needing runner-runner. It didn't come and Chidwick was out in third for $1.512 million. Although Foxen held the lead going into heads-up play - his 5.84 million to Haxton's 4.965 million - Haxton made short work of the match. Haxton won the first heads-up pot to take a 2-1 chip lead and Foxen could never recover from there. On the final hand, Haxton limped the button holding the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Jh"]. Foxen raised to 225,000 out of the big blind with the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="8d"] and Haxton jammed. Foxen called to put himself at risk for 1.33 million, but he wouldn’t be doubling up. The final board ran [poker card="Ac"][poker card="Qc"][poker card="6c"][poker card="Kh"][poker card="Js"] to give Haxton two pair and the victory. For Foxen, his second-place finish was worth a whopping $2.16 million and put quite the cap on an incredible year that saw him win more than $6.6 million on the live felt. "For tournament results, there's no competition," Haxton said of where he ranked this Super High Roller Bowl triumph. "This is my biggest score ever and the other ones that come somewhat close are second- and third-place finishes. This is easily the best tournament result I've ever had and it's an event I love. It feels great to win here at ARIA. This is the highlight of my tournament career, no doubt." Widely known as a high-stakes cash game player, Haxton certainly does his fair share of competing in the largest tournaments in the world. As for how he wins this much money, Haxton will take it any way he can get it. "If I can win $3.6 million, I'm not going to be picky about how I win it," Haxton said. "It can be in the lottery, on Wheel of Fortune, I don’t care. Give me the $3.6 million. I’m not going to complain about how I won it."
  19. Just like every other year going back to 2004, a fresh start to poker's yearly tournament calendar kicks off with the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure in the Bahamas. This year brings a heightened level of excitement with the PokerStars Players NL Hold’em Championship headlining the event in what is lining up to be a record-setting PCA. Speaking of records, in anticipation of the 2019 PCA festival, PocketFives went looking through the poker history books at HendonMob to find the biggest winners in history from PCA. Here’s what was found. Thanks to a gigantic $3 million payday in 2009, Poorya Nazari holds the record for the largest first-place prize at PCA. He won the 2009 PCA Main Event from a field of 1,347 entries to claim that prize. Three other times in history has the PCA Main Event winner taken home at least $2 million. In 2008, Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier took home $2 million, Harrison Gimbel won $2.2 million in 2010, and in 2011 it was Galen Hall scoring $2.3 million. But, none of those players is the top all-time money earner from PCA. That title currently belongs to Bryn Kenney, and it doesn’t appear that Kenney is going to be caught anytime soon. Top 25 PCA All-Time Money List PLAYER EARNINGS 1 Bryn Kenney $6,245,111 2 Steve O'Dwyer $3,800,542 3 Tony Gregg $3,096,596 4 Poorya Nazari $3,000,000 5 Scott Seiver $2,970,620 6 Galen Hall $2,877,080 7 Vanessa Selbst $2,824,640 8 Isaac Haxton $2,583,616 9 Jason Koon $2,555,555 10 Daniel Negreanu $2,521,490 11 Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier $2,484,120 12 Harrison Gimbel $2,329,220 13 Dan Shak $2,278,140 14 Cary Katz $2,257,420 15 Byron Kaverman $2,213,355 16 Mustapha Kanit $2,020,200 17 Justin Bonomo $1,991,372 18 Dimitar Danchev $1,985,000 19 John Dibella $1,955,300 20 Ty Reiman $1,937,770 21 Chris Oliver $1,834,160 22 Eugene Katchalov $1,763,220 23 Will Molson $1,750,735 24 Daniel Dvoress $1,607,302 25 Nick Petrangelo $1,581,665 As you can see, Kenney is worlds ahead of the competition, winning more than $2.4 million more than anyone else on the list. That $2.4 million gap alone is good enough for 12th place on this leaderboard. Kenney's largest score from PCA came in the 2016 Super High Roller, an event with a buy-in of $100,000 that saw him win $1.687 million. The following year, Kenney won a $50,000 and $25,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em events for $969,075 and $392,876, respectively. He also has a trio of third-place finishes over the years worth $873,880, $686,960, and $643,000. Steve O'Dwyer is the second highest money earner from PCA entering 2019, taking home more than $3.8 million in prize money throughout the years. O'Dwyer's a pretty good chunk of change away from Kenney, and he's also more than $700,000 ahead of Tony Gregg in third place. Knowing some of the performances O'Dwyer has put together over the years combined with what's on the schedule for 2019 doesn't make it out of the realm of possibilities that he can catch Kenney in 2019. O'Dwyer has one win in a $100,000 buy-in event and two wins from $50,000 buy-in events at PCA for $1.872 million, $945,495, and $760,500, respectively. The 2019 schedule features the $25,000 buy-in PSPC, three additional $25,000 buy-in tournaments, one $50,000 buy-in event, and two $100,000 tournaments, there certainly won’t be a lack of opportunities for O'Dwyer to win a ton of money in the Bahamas this January. That's not to mention the PCA $10,300 Main Event as well. Looking at the rest of the list for players we could see make big moves on the leaderboard after 2019, Isaac Haxton, Jason Koon, and Daniel Negreanu are a few of the ones to watch, given their appetite for and success in high buy-in tournaments coupled with the robust schedule to suit their palate. Negreanu's largest score out of PCA came in 2011 when he finished second to Eugene Katchalov in the event’s inaugural $100,000 Super High Roller. Negreanu earned a cool $1 million for that result. He followed that finish up by returning to the final table of the event in 2012, when he took fifth for $250,900. In 2018, he took fourth in the same event for $521,140. Another big score Negreanu had from PCA came in the 2017 PCA $25,000 High Roller. In that one, he took fifth for $268,780. Byron Kaverman and Justin Bonomo are also ones from this top 25 list to keep an eye on. For players not currently in the top 25, don't be surprised if you see Mikita Badziakouski, Alex Foxen, Stephen Chidwick, or David Peters take home a ship full of money from the Bahamas and find themselves listed on the updated list of top 25 winners from PCA when the 2019 version is all said and done. Action from the Bahamas kicks off Sunday, January 6, 2019, with the $25,000 buy-in PokerStars Players NL Hold'em Championship from Atlantis Resort & Casino. PovketFives will be on site all the way through until the event's final day on January 16, so stay tuned for more coverage from the 2019 PCA poker series.
  20. The 2019 Triton Poker Super High Roller Series Montenegro is in the books, and several huge winners emerged from the high-stakes poker series held at the Maestral Resort & Casino along the Adriatic Sea. Chief among them was Bryn Kenney, who won more than $4.1 million total and jumped to No. 4 on poker's all-time money list, per Hendon Mob. Kenney only cashed twice in the series, but both times he won the tournament. In the first, Kenney topped a field of 79 entries to win the HK$500,000 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em event for HK$11.23 million ($1.43 million). In the second, he topped a field of 75 entries in the HK$1 million Main Event to win HK$21.3 million ($2.71 million). With those two wins, Kenney improved to just shy of $34.8 million in career live tournaments earnings, of which he's won more than $9.1 million in 2019 alone. Kenney’s previous best year on the live tournament felt was in 2017 when he won more than $8.5 million. Other big winners to come out of the 2019 Triton Poker Super High Roller Series Montenegro include Rui Cao ($3.61 million), Paul Phua ($3.59 million), Nikita Badziakouski ($2.91 million), and Daniel Dvoress ($2.71 million). Both Phua and Dvoress cashed five times in the series and a total of 12 players earned combined prizes of more than $1 million. Top 10 Triton Poker Series Montenegro Money List Bryn Kenney - $4,145,235 Rui Cao - $3,611,013 Paul Phua - $3,594,983 Nikita Badziakouski - $2,912,467 Daniel Dvoress - $2,717,155 Arnaud Romain - $2,130,372 Daniel Tang - $1,976,217 Sam Greenwood - $1,943,613 Peter Jetten - $1,865,303 Ben Lamb - $1,192,009 Just outside of the top 10 were Kenneth Kiang and Seng 'Ivan' Leow, who cashed for $1.08 million and $1.06 million from the series, respectively. Triton Poker Series Montenegro Results HK$250,000 Eight-Handed NL Turbo Entries: 45 Prize Pool: HK$10,575,000 Steve O'Dwyer - HK$3,708,784 ($472,788) Isaac Haxton - HK$2,901,216 ($369,841
) Linus Loeliger - HK$1,720,000 ($219,262) Kok Beh - HK$1,240,000 ($158,073) Sam Greenwood - HK$1,005,000 ($128,115) [caption id="attachment_624174" align="alignnone" width="1354"] Bryn Kenney won two tournaments at the recent Triton Poker Series in Montenegro (photo: Triton Poker)[/caption] HK$500,000 Six-Handed NL Entries: 79 Prize Pool: HK$37,130,000 Bryn Kenney - HK$11,230,000 ($1,431,376) Daniel Dvoress - HK$7,430,000 ($947,028) Seng 'Ivan' Leow - HK$5,070,000 ($646,222) Sergio Aido - HK$3,820,000 ($486,897) Jason Koon - HK$2,970,000 ($378,556) Christoph Vogelsang - HK$2,300,000 ($293,158) Richard Yong - HK$1,820,000 ($231,977) Daniel Tang - HK$1,410,000 ($179,719) Cheong Ieng - HK$1,080,000 ($137,657) HK$100,000 Short Deck NL Ante Only Entries: 70 Prize Pool: HK$6,580,000 Winfred Yu - HK$2,040,000 ($259,952) Isaac Haxton - HK$1,370,000 ($174,576) Peter Jetten - HK$920,000 ($117,233) Leon Tsoukernik - HK$700,000 ($89,199) Steffen Sontheimer - HK$540,000 ($68,811) Ihor Shkliaruk - HK$420,000 ($53,520) Tam Lon - HK$330,000 ($42,051) Jordi Urlings - HK$260,000 ($33,131) HK$1,000,000 NL Main Event Entries: 75 Prize Pool: HK$70,500,000 Bryn Kenney - HK$21,300,000 ($2,713,859) Daniel Tang - HK$14,100,000 ($1,796,498) Peter Jetten - HK$9,600,000 ($1,223,148) Nikita Badziakouski - HK$7,260,000 ($925,005) Sam Greenwood - HK$5,650,000 ($719,873) Paul Phua - HK$4,440,000 ($560,609) Erik Seidel - HK$3,460,000 ($440,842) Matthias Eibinger - HK$2,680,000 ($341,462) Jason Koon - HK$2,050,000 ($261,193) HK$250,000 NL Turbo Entries: 37 Prize Pool: HK$8,972,500 Henrik Hecklen - HK$3,410,000 ($434,500) Alex Foxen - HK$2,200,000 ($280,323) Timothy Adams - HK$1,460,000 ($186,032) Daniel Dvoress - HK$1,052,500 ($134,109) Michael Watson - HK$850,000 ($108,306) HK$1,000,000 Short Deck NL Main Event Entries: 98 Prize Pool: HK$92,120,000 Rui Cao - HK$26,300,000 ($3,351,130) Paul Phua - HK$17,100,000 ($2,178,871) Arnaud Romain - HK$11,800,000 ($1,503,549) Daniel Dvoress - HK$9,070,000 ($1,155,694) Kenneth Kiang - HK$7,200,000 ($917,420) Ming Liu - HK$5,620,000 ($716,097) Choon Siow - HK$4,400,000 ($560,645) Isaac Haxton - HK$3,400,000 ($433,226) Timofey Kuznetsov - HK$2,630,000 ($335,113) Nikita Badziakouski - HK$2,300,000 ($293,065) Guang Lu - HK$2,300,000 ($293,065) HK$200,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Entries: 37 Prize Pool: HK$6,956,000 Hing Chow - HK$2,640,000 ($336,383) Ben Lamb - HK$1,706,000 ($217,375) Viacheslav Osipov - HK$1,130,000 ($143,982) Henrik Hecklen - HK$820,000 ($104,483) Wai Chan - HK$660,000 ($84,096) HK$200,000 Short Deck NL Ante Only Turbo Entries: 64 Prize Pool: HK$12,032,000 Quek Sheng - HK$3,700,000 ($471,416) Peter Jetten - HK$2,500,000 ($318,524) Paul Phua - HK$1,700,000 ($216,596) Kenneth Kiang - HK$1,292,000 ($164,613) Wai Chan - HK$980,000 ($124,861) John Gabe Patgorski - HK$770,000 $98,105) Daniel Dvoress - HK$610,000 ($77,720) Rui Cao - HK$480,000 ($61,157) [caption id="attachment_624175" align="alignnone" width="1354"] John Juanda was among the winners at the recent Triton Poker Series in Montenegro (photo: Triton Poker)[/caption] HK$250,000 Short Deck NL Ante Only Entries: 65 Prize Pool: HK$15,275,000 John Juanda - HK$4,720,000 ($601,358) Daniel Dvoress - HK$3,160,000 ($402,604) Wai Yong - HK$2,150,000 ($273,924) Peter Jetten - HK$1,620,000 ($206,398) Sergey Lebedev - HK$1,250,000 ($159,258) Daniel Cates - HK$980,000 ($124,858) Christopher Soyza - HK$780,000 ($99,377) Paul Phua - HK$615,000 ($78,355) HK$750,000 Short Deck NL Ante Only Entries: 52 Prize Pool: HK$38,122,500 Nikita Badziakouski - HK$13,300,000 ($1,694,397) Sam Greenwood - HK$8,600,000 ($1,095,625) Qiang Wang - HK$5,700,000 ($726,170) Paul Phua - HK$4,400,000 ($560,552) Andrew Robl - HK$3,422,500 ($436,021) Xuan Tan - HK$2,700,000 ($343,975) [caption id="attachment_624173" align="alignnone" width="1354"] Ben Lamb was another big name to score a victory at the recent Triton Poker Series in Montenegro (photo: Triton Poker)[/caption] HK$500,000 Short Deck NL Ante Only Entries: 42 Prize Pool: HK$20,080,000 Ben Lamb - HK$7,650,000 ($974,634) Arnaud Romain - HK$4,920,000 ($626,823) Seng 'Ivan' Leow - HK$3,250,000 ($414,060) Xuan Tan - HK$2,350,000 ($299,397) Timofey Kuznetsov - HK$1,910,000 ($243,340) HK$300,000 NL/Short Deck Mix Entries: 27 Prize Pool: HK$7,857,000 Daniel Cates - HK$3,930,000 ($500,682) Jason Koon - HK$2,367,000 ($301,556) Rui Cao - HK$1,560,000 ($198,744) Effect On Poker’s All-Time Money List The big results coming out of the Triton Poker Super High Roller Series Montenegro caused plenty of shifting towards the top of poker’s all-time money list. As already mentioned, Kenney jumped to No. 4 overall. Jason Koon, who cashed three times in Montenegro for just under $1 million, slid up one spot ahead of Antonio Esfandiari to be No. 8. Isaac Haxton, who, like Koon, won just under $1 million from this series, is now No. 13 and Badziakouski jumped to No. 15. John Juanda, who won an event in Montenegro for just more than $600,000, actually dropped back to No. 14. Then, looking a bit further down the leaderboard, Phua can now be found at No. 62 on the list after winning $3.59 million in Montenegro. High roller and super high roller events are as plentiful as they have ever been on the poker circuit. Numerous stops have $25,000 or $50,000 buy-in events, and some even push the envelope even further with $100,000 price tags on the schedule. Then, there are several festivals a year that are solely dedicated to ultra high-stakes players, such as the Triton Poker Series festivals. If there was ever a 'steroid era' in poker, similar to what baseball went through for an extended period of time, most commonly referred to as the latter half of the 1990s and into the 2000s. It's not that poker players are using performance-enhancing drugs to boost their earnings, but rather that there’s such an injection of these super high buy-in small-field events that are causing grand shifts in money lists. It doesn’t appear that these events and festivals are going anywhere, so poker will need to go through a bit of a market correction and rankings adjustments to correctly account for the juiced results.
  21. For the first time at the 2019 World Series of Poker, there were two bracelets awarded in a single day as Ben Heath and Dan Zack each picked up the first WSOP title of their careers on Monday. Those were just two of the seven events on the schedule that included another Day 2 in the Big 50, an influx of players in the $10,000 Short Deck, and another massive No Limit Hold'em tournament. And it just wouldn't be the WSOP if there wasn't a drama bomb in the first week. Ben Heath Avoids Controversial Ending, Wins $50K High Roller Ben Heath started the final table of the $50,000 High Roller event on Monday with the chip lead and while he didn't hold onto it the entire night, he had it when it mattered most; at the end. Heath beat a final table that included Chance Kornuth, Nick Petrangelo, Sam Soverel and finally Andrew Lichtenberger heads-up to claim the $1,484,085 first place prize and the first bracelet of his career. “It feels a lot better than I thought it would,” Heath said. “When I was younger, I was shy and didn't really want to win the bracelet. I would have rather just taken second place. But now that it has happened, it feels great!” The final table provided the first controversial moment of the WSOP though. Down to four players, Soverel folded out of turn while waiting for Heath to respond to an all-in shove for Yurasov. The moment soon caught the eye of high roller regular Isaac Haxton who took to Twitter. Haxton's tweet set off a firestorm of responses on both sides of the issues from players who have played against Soverel in tournaments around the world. Final Table Payouts Ben Heath $1,484,085 Andrew Lichtenberger - $917,232 Sam Soverel - $640,924 Dmitry Yurasov - $458,138 Nick Petrangelo - $335,181 Chance Kornuth - $251,128 Dan Zack Takes Down $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Experience pays off at the WSOP and as the final table of the $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw event played down to a winner, Dan Zack relied heavily on his experience playing a lot of short-handed Triple Draw games over the past few years. It paid off handsomely for the 26-year-old New Jersey poker player as he beat Sumir Mathur heads-up to win $160,447 and the first bracelet of his career. “Draw games are my favorite games and probably my best games. I’ve probably played more hands of three-handed and heads-up draw than I’ve played of anything else in the last couple of years. I’ve played a ton of short-handed triple draw and Badugi online, so this is a cool event to take down,” Zack said after his win. There were 13 players at the start of the day that felt like they had a shot at the bracelet. Bryce Yockey, Andrew Brown, Mark Gregorich and Mike Gorodinsky were just some of the talented players that busted before the final table. Jake Schwartz, who started Day 2 with the chip lead, busted in sixth. Final Table Payouts Dan Zack - $160,447 Sumir Mathur - $99,153 Brayden Gazlay - $65,217 Jon Turner - $43,984 Jesse Hampton - $30,437 Jake Schwartz - $21,625 Saya Ono Gets Through Big 50 Day 1C on Top Saya Ono, a Southern California cash game regular, went from all in on the bubble to end-of-day chip leader on Tuesday. Ono bagged up 3,810,000 and is one of just two players who finished with more than 3,000,000 in chips. The other is Britain's Benjamin Dobson (3,560,000). The day started with 1,504 players and ended with 404 players putting chips in a bag. Notables who are still alive include Isaac Baron, Asher Conniff, Men Nguyen, Rex Clinkscales, Ari Engel, Eric Baldwin, Matt Stout, and Jared Griener. Those players moving on to Day 3, will now wait until Wednesday to resume play as the Day 1D survivors get their shot to move on to Tuesday. Prize pool information for the Big 50 should be announced early Tuesday morning. Top 10 Chip Counts Saya Ono - 3,810,000 Benjamin Dobson - 3,560,000 Nelson Rose - 2,915,000 Ubaid Habib - 2,600,000 Danny Ehrenberger - 2,440,000 Catherine Valdes - 2,430,000 Renato Manalo - 2,360,000 Samuel Welbourne - 2,275,000 Janae Pham - 2,250,000 Jiehao Zhu - 2,230,000 $10,000 Short Deck No Limit Hold'em Gets Boost A lot of the talk on Day 1 of the $10,000 Short Deck event was centered around the lack of turnout. Just 61 players showed up on Sunday for the opening day but with two hours of late registration on Monday, another 53 entries boosted the field to 114 total players. Some of the players who took advantage of the late registration included Shaun Deeb, Ryan Riess, Ben Yu, Daniel Negreanu, Alex Foxen, Rainer Kempe, Andrew Robl, and Phil Hellmuth. Busting out of the $50,000 High Roller didn't seem to impact Chance Kornuth too much. He walked right over to this event and ran up his stack to 2,163,000 and heads into Wednesday's final table as the chip leader. Alex Epstein and Yong Wang sit second and third respectively and were the only other players to finish with a seven-figure stack. Pennsylvania poker pro Thai Ha has the shortest remaining stack and will have his work cut out for him if he hopes to spin it up on Tuesday. Players who cashed on Monday but failed to advance to Tuesday include Bill Perkins, Kane Kalas, Alex Foxen, Justin Bonomo, and Galen Hall. The event was originally scheduled to run four days but given the light Day 1 turnout and the rapid pace of eliminations on Day 2, tournament organizers decided to shorten the event by one day. The final table gets underway at 2 PM PT. Final Table Chip Counts Chance Kornuth - 2,163,000 Alex Epstein - 1,275,000 Yong Wang - 1,176,000 Anson Tsang - 975,000 Rene van Krevelen - 563,000 Andrew Robl - 406,000 Thai Ha - 283,000 Big Field Shows for $600 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack If you thought the days of long line-ups were going to be restricted to the Big 50, you'd be wrong. The first Deepstack event of the 2019 WSOP attracted 6,151 players, many of them coming from the Big 50 after busting out. The event, which features 20-minute levels, is scheduled to be a two-day event but with 581 players advancing to Day 2, it seems more likely that a third day will be added. Paul Dhaliwal finished as the chip leader with 1,612,000 chips going in the bag at the end of the night. Some of the notables who advanced to Day 2 include Jake Schwartz, Bart Lybaert, Daniel Negreanu, Maurice Hawkins, Matt Stout, Ylon Schwartz, and Erik Seidel. Action gets underway at Noon PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Paul Dhaliwal - 1,612,000 Michael Morhaime - 1,275,000 David Elet - 1,255,000 Mohammad Saadeghvazri - 1,215,000 Christopher Battenfield - 1,190,000 Zachary Vankeuren - 1,032,000 Kyle Dover - 951,000 Richard Smith - 922,000 Edvinas Gruzdas - 896,000 Roman Kroupa - 893,000 Jim Collopy Leads $1,500 Dealers Choice After Day 1 A lot of the focus at the WSOP over the past few days has been on No Limit Hold'em, but mixed game aficionados were out in full force Monday afternoon for the $1,500 Dealers Choice event. Jim Collopy bagged up 84,300 and leads the 178 players who managed to survive Day 1. The event drew 470 players. Other familiar faces who are moving on to Day 2 include Robert Mizrachi, Dan Shak, WSOP Circuit crusher Valentin Vornicu, Greg Mueller, Ryan Hughes, David 'ODB' Baker, Marco Johnson and Dzmitry Urbanovich. Top 10 Chip Counts Jim Collopy - 84,300 Danny Noam - 81,100 Jason Stockfish - 79,500 Al Barbieri - 65,800 Nikolai Yakovenko - 63,600 Ryan Leng - 62,800 Tamon Nakamura - 61,100 Cole Jackson - 56,800 Robert Campbell - 56,400 Todd Barlow - 54,900 Dan Smith Leads $5,000 No Limit Hold'em Straight forward No Limit Hold'em was on the menu as the final event to get underway on Monday. 343 players entered the $5,000 No Limit Hold'em event and the high end of the Day 1 chip counts include a who's who of NLHE bosses. Dan Smith sits on top of that impressive list with 321,000. Simon Deadman, Darryll Fish, and Faraz Jaka take up the second - fourth place spots behind Smith. Online poker crusher Arsenii 'josef_shvejk' Karmatckii bagged up the fifth biggest stack. There's a plethora of well-known players outside of the top 10 chip counts. Dietrich Fast, Niall Farrell, Antoine Saout, Ali Imsirovic, Adrian Mateos, Chris Hunichen, Daniel Strelitz, Ian O'Hara, and Joao Vieira all still have chips and a shot at winning the bracelet. Registration remains open until the end of Level 12 on Tuesday. Top 10 Chip Counts Dan Smith - 321,100 Simon Deadman - 267,000 Darryll Fish - 254,400 Faraz Jaka - 224,600 Arsenii Karmatckii - 221,900 Andreas Eiler - 171,200 Emile Schiff - 170,200 Brett Bader - 158,400 Georgios Kitsios - 154,000 Pedro Oliveira - 137,900
  22. Winning a World Series of Poker gold bracelet is widely considered by many to be poker’s ultimate achievement. For some players, it defines his or her career. For others, it’s the one prize eluding some of the game’s best. For years, Stephen Chidwick was considered the best poker player without a WSOP gold bracelet. At the 2019 WSOP, Chidwick bucked that monkey off his back like the most turbulent bull does to a rider at a rodeo when he won the $25,000 Pot Limit Omaha High Roller for $1.618 million. Shawn Buchanan was another player in the "best without a bracelet conversation," but, like Chidwick, he broke through at the 2019 WSOP, winning the $800 buy-in WSOP.com Online NL Six-Handed. Now that Chidwick and Buchanan have each won an elusive gold bracelet, let's take a look at who are the best players remaining without a bracelet entering the 2020 WSOP. Patrick Antonius CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 15 2 0 $929,518 Widely considered one of the best all-around players in poker for quite some time, Patrik Antonius is still missing a WSOP gold bracelet from his résumé. He's come close a couple of times, finishing in the top 10 on four occasions and placing at the final table twice, but he's never scored better than third place. Antonius has been known to pass on tournaments for cash games these days, but he's still a threat to win a bracelet in the bigger buy-in WSOP events when he does compete. Niklas Astedt CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 6 0 0 $110,645 Sweden's Niklas Astedt is one of the top-ranked online poker players in the world, but his live success hasn’t been too plentiful, especially at the WSOP. Astedt’s skills should not be overlooked, though. His first WSOP cash came in 2014 and his highest WSOP finish was a 26th-place result in the 2019 WSOP $25,000 Pot Limit Omaha High Roller. He's also cashed in the WSOP Main Event on two occasions, with a 182nd-place finish in 2016 and a 899th-place finish in 2019. Mikita Badziakouski CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 4 4 1 $3,161,362 Mikita Badziakouski plays some of the biggest buy-in events around the world, and his career to date includes more than $26.1 million in live tournament earnings. At the WSOP, Badziakouski has four cashes. Each cash has been a final table appearance and each has come at WSOP Europe. If there's a high roller event on the WSOP schedule, Badziakouski will likely be in the field and a threat to win the gold bracelet. Darren Elias CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 28 3 0 $645,659 With four World Poker Tour titles and more than $7.5 million in live tournament earnings, it’s a matter of when, not if, Darren Elias will finally win WSOP gold. His first WSOP cash came in 2009. He has three WSOP final table appearances and two finishes in third place, although he’s never made it to heads-up play. The two times Elias finished in third came from the same event, the $10,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Championship in 2017 and 2019. Alex Foxen CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 39 4 0 $808,918 Alex Foxen has been around the WSOP for a much shorter time than some of the players on this list, with his first WSOP cash coming in 2015. He has, however, built up quite the reputation as one of the best tournament poker players in the game today and it seems very much just a matter of time before he finds himself in the WSOP winner’s circle with his first gold bracelet. Already, Foxen has racked up 39 WSOP cashes and four final tables ahead of 2020. His highest finish to date was a third-place finish at the 2017 WSOP in a $1,000 No Limit Hold’em event. Matt Glantz CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 61 13 1 $3,232.669 Pennsylvania's Matt Glantz has been around the WSOP block a few times, but he’s still looking for that first gold bracelet. Glantz first cashed in a WSOP in 2000 and he’s been producing everything but wins since, including 13 final table appearances. Glantz has reached heads-up play once and finished third on three occasions. At the 2019 WSOP, Glantz picked up his third WSOP Main Event cash. Mark Gregorich CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 69 11 1 $1,168,497 Mark Gregorich is another player on this list who has been around for quite some time, earning his first WSOP cash back in 1999. He has 69 cashes and 11 final table appearances at the WSOP, with one runner-up finish that came in the 2003 WSOP $5,000 Limit Hold’em event. Gregorich also has a trio of third-place finishes at the WSOP to date. Nick Guagenti CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 37 3 0 $583,181 Ohio's Nick Guagenti has 37 WSOP cashes with the first coming in 2006. He has three final table appearances. Guagenti's highest WSOP result came in 2019 when he took third in the $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. event for $85,265. His best finish in terms of money won came from his 46th-place finish in the 2017 WSOP Main Event, for which Guagenti won $145,733. Guagenti is a regular in mid- and high-stakes cash games in his region, and he also has 15 cashes on the WSOP Circuit. Christian Harder CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 53 2 0 $1,050,784 Christian Harder’s first WSOP cash came in 2009. He’s won titles elsewhere in the poker world, just not at the WSOP just yet. He’s been close before with a pair of fourth-place finishes and is known to put in a high amount of volume in the big bet games of No Limit Hold’em and Pot Limit Omaha. Maurice Hawkins CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 29 3 0 $623,240 Maurice Hawkins has been a longtime grinder of the WSOP and WSOP Circuit, racking up 29 WSOP cashes and 110 WSOP Circuit cashes. He has a whopping 14 WSOP Circuit gold rings, but Hawkins has yet to win a WSOP gold bracelet. Hawkins has three WSOP final tables and they've come in big-field NL tournaments. With as many big-field NL events that are on the WSOP schedule these days, one has to figure that Hawkins is going to break through and win one at some point. Isaac Haxton CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 27 7 1 $2,923,424 Isaac Haxton is widely considered as one of the best minds in poker, and he’s certainly lived up to that with more than $27.6 million in live tournament earnings, millions more won in cash games, and who knows how much won online. The one thing he doesn’t have is a WSOP gold bracelet. Haxton has seven WSOP final table appearances and one runner-up result. The second-place finish came to Vitaly Lunkin in the 2009 WSOP $40,000 No Limit Hold’em. Maria Ho CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 55 5 1 $1,644,554 Maria Ho is another long-time regular at the WSOP, with cashes dating back to 2005. She has five final table appearances and one runner-up finish in WSOP events, and she’s known to mix it up in most of the games. Ho’s runner-up finish came to Allen Bari in the 2011 WSOP $5,000 No Limit Hold’em. Ho has been the last woman standing in the WSOP Main Event on two occasions, 2007 and 2014, and she finished sixth in the 2017 WSOP Europe Main Event. Ali Imsirovic CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 10 3 1 $583,986 Ali Imsirovic is one of the newest kids on the block in all of poker, not just the WSOP, and he’s quickly acquired a reputation of one of the game’s best when it comes to No Limit Hold’em tournaments. Imsirovic’s first WSOP cash came in 2017, so there isn’t a ton of sample to draw from, but he’s already made three WSOP final tables in top-level events and has one runner-up finish. Given his success in his young poker career, Imsirovic is considered one of the favorites any time he enters a high buy-in, No Limit Hold’em event. Rainer Kempe CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 31 3 0 $1,142,997 Rainer Kempe has won more than $21.3 million in his poker career and he’s been in the winner’s circle many times, but he’s yet to win a WSOP gold bracelet. His WSOP career is still pretty young, though. His first WSOP cash came in 2015, but over a short period of time he’s already earned 31 in-the-money finishes and more than $1.1 million in earnings. Kempe has been to a WSOP final table three times to date. Jason Koon CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 42 7 1 $1,789,462 For all of the poker success that Jason Koon has enjoyed over the course of his career, he’s still searching for his first WSOP gold bracelet. Koon has more than $31.1 million in live tournament earnings to date and his first WSOP cash came back in 2009. He has seven WSOP final table appearances and one runner-up result. Koon is similar to Haxton and Imsirovic in the sense that he’ll almost always be one of the favorites any time he enters a high buy-in, No Limit hold’em tournament. Timofey Kuznetsov CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 0 0 0 $0 Timofey Kuznetsov, also known as ‘Trueteller,’ is highly regarded in the poker community as one of the best, especially within the high-stakes community. He has zero WSOP cashes to date, but he simply doesn’t play a lot of tournaments. That said, Kuznetsov is still one of the best players in poker without a WSOP gold bracelet. Maria Lampropulos CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 27 0 0 $136,731 Maria Lampropulos first cashed a WSOP event in 2016 and that first year she walked away with five WSOP cashes in total. She followed that up with six cashes in 2017 and seven cashes in 2018. At the 2019 WSOP and WSOP Europe festivals, she cashed nine time. With partypoker MILLIONS and PCA Main Event wins on her résumé, both for seven-figure paydays, Lampropulos has shown she has the chops to compete in some of the biggest events in the world. Toby Lewis CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 24 0 0 $409,171 Toby Lewis’ first WSOP cash came in 2011 when he took 11th in the $10,000 Pot Limit Hold’em Championship. He’s racked up 24 WSOP cashes to date, but he’s never reached a WSOP final table. Tom Marchese CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 26 4 1 $1,295,638 A player with more than $19.1 million in live tournament earnings, Tom Marchese is often considered one of the better tournament players poker has to offer. He's yet to score a WSOP gold bracelet, though, but he has come close a few times, with four WSOP final tables and one runner-up finish. The time Marchese finished second was at the 2015 WSOP in the $1,500 Pot Limit Hold'em tournament. Steve O‘Dwyer CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 18 2 0 $675,717 Like Haxton and like Koon, Steve O’Dwyer has a ton of live tournament winnings. O’Dwyer has scored more than $30.4 million from the live felt, plus plenty more online, and his first WSOP cash came in 2007. O’Dwyer is a player who put in more WSOP volume at the beginning of his career compared to what he does now, which could be holding him back in terms of winning his first gold bracelet. At this point in his career, it seems that if O'Dwyer does win a gold bracelet, it will come at WSOP Europe or a similar international WSOP stop. Adam Owen CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 34 5 0 $570,961 Adam Owen is another one of the younger guns on this list, but he’s widely regarded as one of the best all-around players in the game these days. Having earned his first WSOP cash in 2014, Owen has racked up 34 WSOP cashes to date, including five final tables and three third-place finishes. Owen has shown a propensity to perform well in the $10,000 buy-in championship events at the WSOP and many think that’s where he’ll earn his first gold bracelet from. Felipe Ramos CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 31 4 0 $526,047 One of best poker players to come out of Brazil is Felipe Ramos, with 31 WSOP cashes dating back to his first in 2009. Ramos is known as a solid player who can compete across all variants, and the more tools you have in your shed, the better when it comes to chasing gold bracelets. Ramos has four WSOP final tables and they've all come in Omaha. Three of those four final tables were in Pot Limit Omaha. Dario Sammartino CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 41 10 0 $9,927,947 Italy’s Dario Sammartino first cashed in a WSOP event in 2011 and he’s been performing very well ever since, except winning a WSOP gold bracelet is something he’s yet to achieve. Sammartino has found the money in WSOP events 41 times to date. Of those, he’s reached the final table on 10 occasions. Sammartino's biggest claim to World Series of Poker fame was a runner-up finish in the 2019 WSOP Main Event for $6 million. He's also one of the few players to have made the final table of both the WSOP Main Event and WSOP Europe Main Event in his career. Sammartino has learned how to play all the games and play them well, so don’t be surprised to see him finally win WSOP gold much sooner than later. Ole Schemion CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 6 1 0 $469,735 Although his WSOP results don’t pop off the page, Ole Schemion is one of the best players out there and an absolute force when it comes to poker tournaments. He’s amassed more than $16.3 million in live tournament earnings, numerous high roller victories, and one World Poker Tour title. He’s still in search of his first WSOP gold bracelet, though. In terms of winning WSOP gold, it’s very likely just a volume game for Schemion. If he puts in the volume, he’ll get it eventually and probably in the near future. It also works to his benefit that WSOP Europe looks as though it will remain at King’s Casino in Rozvadov where Schemion has shown success before, including a sixth-place finish in the 2019 WSOP Europe €100,000 Diamond High Roller for €341,510. Jake Schindler CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 33 4 0 $1,050,644 The first of two players named Jake on this list, Jake Schindler has 33 entries and four final tables at the WSOP entering 2020. His best finish was a third-place result in the 2014 WSOP $3,000 No Limit Hold'em for $212,373. Over his entire poker career, Schindler has more than $25 million in live tournament earnings. Jake Schwartz CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 60 3 1 $658,477 Jake Schwartz earned his first WSOP cash in 2012 and has built up 60 in-the-money finishes since. He was first widely known as a No Limit hold'em player but he's since branched out and has been playing more of the games. In 2013, Schwartz earned the top WSOP finish of his career when he took second in the $1,500 NL Shootout, earning $202,035. To date, he has two other WSOP final table appearances in addition to that one. Shannon Shorr CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 79 9 2 $2,217,846 When is Shannon Shorr going to finally win a WSOP gold bracelet? Shorr first cashed in a WSOP event back in 2006, which seems like ages ago when you consider he’s still very much on the younger side of poker players. Ever since that first WSOP cash, not a year has gone by that Shorr hasn’t racked up multiple WSOP cashes. Plus, he’s been very close on several occasions with nine final table appearances and two runner-up finishes. He also has a pair of third-place finishes. Shorr can play all of the games very well. Before Chidwick winning his bracelet, Shorr was right there at the top of this list with Chidwick. Dan Smith CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 36 10 1 $9,884,615 Another high roller with a knack for all the games, Dan Smith has been close to winning WSOP gold before but it just hasn’t happened for him yet. His first WSOP cash came in 2010. Since then, he’s earned 36 total WSOP cashes and won more than $9.8 million at the WSOP. He has 10 final table appearances, six third-place finishes, and one second-place finish in WSOP events. Like some of the other high rollers on this list, with Smith it feels like more of a volume game than anything. Christoph Vogelsang CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 13 6 0 $8,668,735 Christoph Vogelsang has come close at the WSOP on a handful of occasions, including two third-place finishes in a pair of the biggest events the WSOP has ever offered. In 2014, Vogelsang placed third in the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop for $4.48 million. In 2019, he took third in the WSOP Europe €250,000 Super High Roller for more than $1.3 million. If there's a big buy-in event at the WSOP, Vogelsang is considered a threat to win it. Mike Watson CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 63 11 4 $2,917,143 Mike Watson has been knocking at the WSOP gold bracelet door for several years now. His first WSOP cash came in 2007 and he’s put up more than 60 cashes to date since. Of the 11 WSOP final table appearances Watson has on record, four of the times he’s finished runner-up. Interestingly, Watson did win the €50,000 Majestic High Roller at the 2012 WSOP Europe, but it was an added non-bracelet event for the high rollers. Had that event been in a later year, it very likely would have been for a gold bracelet. Watson usually plays a high volume of events and can play all the games, much like Shorr, and it’s only a matter of time before he finally scores a WSOP gold bracelet. Jerry Wong CASHES FINAL TABLES RUNNER-UPS WINNINGS 38 7 0 $1,899,225 Jerry Wong may be most well known for reaching the now-defunct WSOP November Nine in 2016, when he finished eighth for more than $1.1 million, but he has plenty of other success at the WSOP. With 38 total WSOP cashes and seven final table appearances, the only thing left for Wong to do is win a gold bracelet. One would think that has to be on the horizon soon for Wong, who has the ability to compete highly in all of the games. His WSOP final table appearances have come in No Limit Deuce to Seven, Pot Limit Omaha, Big Bet Mix, Razz, Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo, H.O.R.S.E., and No Limit Hold'em.
  23. The 2019 Triton Poker Super High Roller Series wrapped up its festival of high-stakes events in London last week. There were seven events, headlined by the £1,050,000 buy-in Triton Million: A Helping Hand for Charity and several million-dollar scores were had. Chief among them was Bryn Kenney with his £16,890,509 result, that converted to $20,563,324. The monstrous score earned Kenney the largest payday in poker history and put him atop the all-time money list. Kenney wasn’t the only big winner, though. Here’s a look at the biggest winners from the 2019 Triton Poker Super High Roller Series London. Top 20 2019 Triton Poker Series London Money List 1. Bryn Kenney - £16,890,509 ($20,563,324) 2. Aaron Zang - £13,779,491 ($16,775,920) 3. Dan Smith - £7,245,300 ($8,820,778) 4. Stephen Chidwick - £5,383,800 ($6,553,948) 5. Wai Kin Yong - £4,426,695 ($5,386,804) 6. Paul Phua - £3,582,305 (4,359,418) 7. Vivek Rajkumar - £3,000,000 ($3,652,345) 8. Justin Bonomo - £2,871,600 ($3,494,073) 9. Bill Perkins - £2,200,000 ($2,678,386) 10. Timothy Adams - £1,899,000 ($2,311,845) 11. Alfred De Carolis - £1,720,000 ($2,094,011) 12. David Benefield - £1,578,600 ($1,919,582) 13. Chin Lim - £1,561,300 ($1,900,134) 14. Wai Chan- £1,550,300 ($1,887,269) 15. Xu Liang - £1,452,900 ($1,767,878) 16. Ben Heath - £1,393,100 ($1,695,407) 17. Charlie Carrel - £1,321,000 ($1,601,853) 18. Linus Loeliger - £1,284,000 ($1,560,327) 19. Christopher Soyza - £1,242,300 ($1,511,921) 20. Jason Koon - £1,177,500 ($1,428,868) Kenney sits atop the series’ leaderboard thanks to his historic score. An interesting note about the score is that, while it broke the record for poker’s largest single tournament score, it was for a second-place finish in the event. Aaron Zang, who is second on this list, actually won the Triton Million event, but a deal with Kenney allowed Kenney to take more money. As a brief aside, Kenney’s 2019 has been absolutely incredible. He’s won nearly $30,000,000 in 2019 and this year alone would have him ranked #10 on poker’s all-time money list. Of note, Kenney won the Aussie Millions Main Event and was the fifth biggest winner from that entire series. Dan Smith and Stephen Chidwick are third and fourth on the list, respectively, and both placed in this positions in the Triton Million. But unlike Kenney and Zang ahead of them, Smith and Chidwick cashed in more events than just the £1,050,000 headliner. Smith took 15th in the £25,000 6-Handed No Limit Hold’em Turbo event for £45,300 ($55,150). Chidwick cashed in three other events for an additional £973,800 ($1,185,001) on top of the £4,410,000 ($5,368,947) he cashed for in the Triton Million. Chidwick took sixth in the £50,000 Short Deck Ante-Only event, seventh in the £100,000 Triton Main Event, and ninth in the £100,000 Short Deck Main Event. The next two names on the list, Wai Kin Yong and Paul Phua, did not cash in the Triton Million, so their performances over the course of the rest of the series must have been pretty good if they landed this high on the leaderboard. Yong won the £100,000 Triton Main Event for £2,591,695 ($3,154,064), and the player he beat was Phua, who took £2,558,305 ($3,113,429) for second place after the two struck a deal. Yong then took second in the £100,00 Short Deck Main Event for £1,835,000 ($2,232,740). Interestingly enough, Phua also went deep in that one, finishing fourth for £974,500 ($1,185,725). Phua added a third cash to his performance. Timothy Adams found himself as the 10th biggest earner from the series, having cashed a total of three times including once in the Triton Million. Outside of the top 10, David Benefield, Chin Lim, Wai Chan, Jason Koon, and Isaac Haxton also cashed three times at the festival. All told, 24 players cashed for at least $1,000,000 at the series. The 20 listed above were joined by Winfred Yu, Sam Greenwood, Haxton, and Rui Cao as seven-figure winners.
  24. All good things must come to an end. And that end has come for the PCA. As PocketFives reported, when PokerStars announced the return of the PSPC in 2020 they also, unceremoniously, announced that the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure would not be back in 2020, ending its run of 16 years. For many, the PCA kicked off the yearly poker calendar with players making plans to escape their winter hardships for weeks of poker, sun and waterslides. At the height of the poker boom, the PCA was one of the most popular stops on the tour as winners of the Main Event added millions to their career earnings and a marquee victory to their resumes. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="888poker"][ptable zone="PokerStars NJ"] However, as many tour stops experienced, the numbers began to decline after Black Friday and the fatigue of making the trip to the Atlantis Resort & Casino began to weigh on the players. Now, PokerStars has pulled the plug on one of the most enduring poker stops of the last two decades. But even though it’s gone, it certainly won’t be forgotten. With that, we’ve compiled nine of the most memorable moments in the history of the PCA. Gus Hansen’s On A Boat Before the PCA became the flagship stop for PokerStars, it has a very different look. In fact, in 2004, the first year it ever took place the PCA was then a World Poker Tour event. Also, it took place on a boat. The Royal Caribbean Voyager of the Seas to be exact and just as poker was about to hit mainstream a young up-and-coming player from Denmark, Gus Hansen, was in the middle of making a reputation for himself, a reputation that lasts to this very day. Hansen bested the likes of Daniel Negreanu for the $455,780 first-place prize and his third WPT title. Right from the get-go, the PCA drew premier poker star power and eventually the PCA would be the engine to create that star power. Ryan Daut And Isaac Haxton Take It Outside In 2007, rising online phenom Isaac Haxton was in prime position to take down the 2007 PCA Main Event and it’s massive $1.5 million first-place prize. Ryan Daut had other ideas and the pair put on a famous heads up battle at the final table which took place…outside. The weather outside was nearly as volatile as the play on the felt. The winds whipped as evening fell and it looked like the sky was going to open up and pour at any moment. In the eye of the storm was Haxton and Daut who played an iconic hand where both players had “absolute Garfunkel!” Haxton won the famous battle of the bluffs but Daut took home the PCA title. ESPN Took The PCA Live The PCA made history in 2011 when PokerStars struck a deal with ESPN to bring ‘near-live’ coverage of the PCA final table to the network. The final table was shown on ESPN2 and online on ESPN3.com on a one-hour delay so viewers could see the hole cards. According to the PokerStars Blog, it was the first time that poker fans were able to see a final table, every hand, every decision completely unedited. “For the first time viewers at home will see a poker telecast from start to finish, with all the strategy of world class-poker players playing in real-time,” said ESPN’s Matt Volk back in 2010. Galen Hall Finds A Fold Not only did 2011 produce one of the first unedited accounts of a final table, but it also produced one of the finest folds every caught on camera. Former #1-ranked PocketFiver Chris ‘Getting Daize’ Oliver was cruising in the PCA Main Event and at the start of heads up play he had a 3:1 chip advantage over fellow online pro Galen Hall. On the third hand of play, the pair both make monster hands by the river. Hall rivered a straight while Oliver had just gone runner-runner to a full house. After being checked to by Oliver, Hall put out a bet and was check-raised for his tournament life. “If Hall calls it’s all over,” said commentator James Hartigan. “I don’t see Hall getting away from this hand,” declared Daniel Negreanu. After minutes in the tank, Hall makes the laydown of his poker life and ended up turning the tables on Oliver to become the 2011 PCA Main Event champion for $2.3 million. Antonio Esfandiari DQ’d From Main Event Antonio Esfandiari loves to prop bet. So does Bill Perkins. When the two of them got together at the 2016 PCA they agreed to a bet that had Esfandiari only able to perform lunges when moving for 48 hours. Sore and not wanting to lunge himself to the bathroom, Esfandiari made the unfortunate decision to go to the bathroom in a bottle…under the poker table. When officials caught wind of Esfandiari’s makeshift restroom he was quickly disqualified from the Main Event. However, the prop bet continued and he got up and lunged his way out of the tournament area. Read: Antonio Esfandiari Disqualified from PCA Main Event Vanessa Selbst’s Big Bet So the story goes…after a night of having (perhaps too much) fun in the Bahamas, Vanessa Selbst made a big bet against her friend Jason Mercier that he couldn’t win three WSOP bracelets the following summer. It’s hard enough for pros to count on winning one WSOP bracelet, much less three and so she ended up giving 180:1 odds on a $10,000 wager. The bet was made in a bit of an 'altered state' and when Selbst woke up the next day, she tried to cancel it but according to Mercier, the bet was booked. She offered Mercier a $1K buy-out, he declined. Mercier went on to pick up two bracelets that summer and finish second in another tournament nearly completing the challenge that would have paid him $1.8 million. Christian Harder Battles Bax Long-time online and live pro Christian Harder became a bit of a footnote in PCA history in his 2017 Main Event win. That’s because, technically, it wasn’t the PCA. That year PokerStars shelved their popular PCA brand and tried to rebrand the tour stop the ‘PokerStars Championship Bahamas’. That is the year Harder fought through the field of 738 entries to find himself heads up for the title. When he looked up he saw he sitting across from him was his former backer (and PocketFives Legacy Award winner) Cliff ‘JohnnyBax’ Josephy. Josephy was a bit of a mentor to Harder and had put him in the PCA in the past so when they got heads up, a deal was quickly struck between the two friends with Harder going on to take home the extra $10K and the first (and last) PSC Bahamas trophy. Maria Lampropulos First Woman Winner of PCA Argentina’s Maria Lampropulos made PCA history in 2018 by becoming the first-ever female to capture a PCA Main Event title. She overcame a 2:1 heads up chip deficit to defeat Canadian crusher Shawn Buchanan and take home the $1,081,100 first-place prize, her second seven-figure score in under 12 months. The Main Event final table was not only notable for who won the title but how she won it. Lampropulos was quite visibly extremely sick throughout the final day, having fits of coughing and seemingly struggling to stay focused. This also led to her taking a long time on many decisions, which prompted other players to call the clock on her on a number of occasions. In the end, she fought through the sickness, made the right decision and won some crucial flips to become the first (and now last) female PCA champion. The PSPC Breaks Records In 2019 PokerStars has a plan to revitalize the PCA and that was by hosting the largest ever $25,000 buy-in tournament - the PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Player Championship. The PSPC was the culmination of a year-long marketing campaign. One that doled out over 320 Platinum Passes, a ticket worth $30,000 that allowed players from all over the world to live their dream of playing in a tournament with life-changing money on the line. When the event got underway, the tournament room was electric with players of every skill level giddy with excitement over such a special event. The tournament exceeded all expectations with 1,039 players registering for the event creating a prize pool of $26,455,500. In fairytale fashion, Platinum Pass winner Ramon Colillas from Spain ended up as the winner and took home the massive $5.1 million first-place prize.
  25. As 2019 draws to a close, PocketFives takes a look back at the year that was in poker news, going month-by-month through the biggest and most important stories of the year. In June, all eyes were on the 2019 WSOP, which kicked off with a bang that included the largest live poker tournament ever and Phil Ivey's return. WSOP Big 50’s Gigantic Turnout The first installment of the World Series of Poker $500 buy-in 'Big 50' tournament was one for the record books, literally. The tournament that was marketed to give comers from all levels a shot at WSOP glory did that and more, becoming the largest live poker tournament in history. The event attracted a field size of 28,474 entries, crushing the previous record of 22,374 entries set by the 2015 WSOP Colossus. Lance Bradley took a look at the record-breaking event to see how it stacks up against another monstrous tournaments, the number of unique entries versus reentries, and more. Nigerian-born Femi Fashakin turned a $500 entry into $1.147 million in the Big 50 and will forever be remembered for such an achievement. [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zgone="888poker NJ"][ptable zone="GG Poker"] Controversy at the WSOP The $50,000 High Roller tournament at the 2019 WSOP drew a lot of attention. Understandably so, given it’s huge buy-in and star-studded field. The resulting headlines were less than what was desired, though, as a bit of controversy came about. With four players left in the tournament, Sam Soverel opened with a raise, Dmitry Yurasov moved all in, Andrew Lichtenberger folded, and then Ben Heath asked for a count. While thinking, Heath tossed in a time bank card and Soverel, who might’ve thought the time bank card was Heath’s actual playing cards, quickly folded his hand. This allowed Heath to think through his decision without having to worry about what Soverel was going to do as the original raiser. Yurasov was not happy with Soverel’s play, as were many people on Twitter, including Isaac Haxton. Phil Ivey Returns Guess who’s back? Phil Ivey’s back! It seems that every summer the poker world is waiting to see if Phil Ivey will return to the WSOP tournament tables or not. In 2019, he returned a week into June, kicking things off with the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship. The poker world was buzzing with his return to the series, but it’d have to until about a week later for him to get back on the WSOP scoreboard by cashing in the $800 NL Deep Stack. Ivey went on to cash five times at the WSOP in the summer and twice more at the 2019 WSOP Europe festival in Rozvadov. His best finish in Las Vegas was an eighth-place result in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship for $124,410. Biggest Win of Jason Young’s Life Jason Young has had his fair share of success on the poker felt, with more than $1.2 million in live tournament earnings and a World Series of Poker gold bracelet to his credit. Despite all of that, it was a victory off the felt that proved to be the biggest win of his life. After Young and his girlfriend welcomed their daughter, Kaeley, into the world, things took a turn for the worse. His girlfriend abruptly moved to Florida, away from their home in New York, and she took the daughter with her. Young’s restaurant was lost and he fell into big debt. Through it all, Young kept fighting. He was fighting for his daughter and fighting to get his life back in order. Along the way, poker helped Young get things back together, and the story on Young by Lance Bradley is an absolute must-read. Chidwick, Engel, Schwartz All Wins Bracelets The conversation of who is the best player without a WSOP gold bracelet lost three key figures in the summer of 2019. That’s when Stephen Chidwick, Ari Engel, and Luke Schwartz all claimed their first pieces of WSOP hardware and can no longer be referred to as the "Best Player Without a Bracelet." To make things even more exciting, all three won their first gold bracelet on the same day.
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