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  1. The World Series of Poker Monster Stack held its second of two starting days on Saturday. While the attendance figure of 7,192 entrants was down about 8% from last year, it's still the third straight weekend of massive crowds at poker's most prestigious tournament series. Prior weekends have featured the Millionaire Maker($1,500 buy-in, 7,275 entrants) and Colossus ($565, 22,374 entrants). --- Tournament Poker Edgeis the only poker training site dedicated exclusively to MTTs and features over 1,000 training videos, blogs, articles, podcasts and a dedicated strategy forum for members. Check Tournament Poker Edge out on Twitter. --- Day 2 of the $1,500 buy-in Monster Stack on Sunday began at 11:00am PT with 2,060 players. Ten levels, each lasting an hour, will take place on Day 2, and the winner will bag $1.2 million. PocketFiver Nick fu_15 Maimone led the way at the start of Day 2 with a stack of 240,200 in chips and was one of only two players to pass 200,000. According to coverage on WSOP.com, "Maimone said he late registered for the event around 4:30pm and was down to around 5,000 relatively early before chipping up throughout the day and adding about 60,000 over the last 15 minutes through a series of knockouts." Among those doubling up late on Day 1B of the tournament was former World Champion Scotty Nguyen, who ran pocket eights into pocket kings, but hit an eight on the flop to pull ahead for good and stave off elimination. He's still quite short on chips at 13,100, but nevertheless made it to the second day of play. Not as fortunate was Dan djk123Kelly. He took third in the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship on Saturday and then registered for the Monster Stack, where he busted on Day 1B after his Q-10 of diamonds could not overcome A-4 of diamonds pre-flop. The most successful PocketFiver in history, Chris moorman1 Moorman (pictured), is still alive in the Monster Stack. The Brit Tweeted, "Bagged 65.2k in the Monster Stack at 1200bb tomorrow. Long, long way to go." Moorman was at 575th on the leaderboard when play resumed on Sunday. Here's how the final nine players in the Monster Stack will cash out: 1st Place: $1,286,942 2nd Place: $796,834 3rd Place: $594,397 4th Place: $445,166 5th Place: $335,938 6th Place: $255,351 7th Place: $195,543 8th Place: $150,783 9th Place: $117,092 At the time, last year's Monster Stack had the largest field of any tournament not named the Main Event. This year, the Colossus became the largest live event ever held at 22,374 entrants. Stay tuned to PocketFives for the latest WSOP coverage, brought to you by Tournament Poker Edge. Want the latest poker headlines and interviews? Follow PocketFives on Twitterand Like PocketFives on Facebook.
  2. [caption width="640"] George Danzer won the ,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event on Monday (WSOP photo)[/caption] George Danzer beat a stacked final table on Monday night at the 2016 World Series of Poker to win the fourth WSOP bracelet of his career and first since 2014. Danzer now has more bracelets than any other German players after breaking the tie with Dominik Nitsche. “Everybody always tries to race for bracelets. But (Germans) do not have a rivalry among our players. We all try to help each other out and are cheering for each other, but we also try to be the best we can," said Danzer. ".I hope Dominik wins his fourth soon, so I can then go out and win my fifth.” While Danzer was busy cementing his own legacy, the Monster Stack field featured a number of players who have already done great things in poker including David Pham and TJ Cloutier. Event #41: David Pham Leads Monster Stack, TJ Cloutier in Top 10 After three complete days of play, the Monster Stack has a dragon on top. David 'the Dragon' Pham leads the final 26 players with 8,895,000 - almost 600,000 more than his closest competitor. Pham, who last won a WSOP bracelet in 2006, isn't the only old-school player still chasing down the $1,120,196 first place prize money. Six-time WSOP bracelet winner TJ Cloutier bagged up 4,600,000 for the eighth biggest stack. Right behind Pham is Cody Pack with 8,330,000. Irish poker legend Donnacha O'Dea is also still in the mix. O'Dea finished Day 3 with 2,900,000. The final 26 players return at 11 AM PT and will play another 10 levels - or down to a winner. Top 10 Chip Counts David Pham - 8,895,000 Cody Pack - 8,330,000 Gina Stagnitto - 6,955,000 Dorian Rios - 6,600,000 Marshall White - 6,505,000 Mitchell Towner - 6,155,000 Rafael Da Silva Moraes - 5,770,000 TJ Cloutier - 4,600,000 Michael Lang - 4,555,000 Andrew Moreno - 3,860,000 Event #43: George Danzer Wins $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo Two years ago German poker pro George Danzer had no WSOP bracelets to his credit and just a few close calls at final tables. On Monday night he won his fourth bracelet, beating out a final table that included David Grey, Scott Clements, Todd Brunson and Justin Bonomo to win the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event. “It’s not like you win three (bracelets) every year. That’s tough to do,” Danzer said. “Last year was a brick year for me, so this is becoming a much better year, so far.” Danzer won three bracelets, and WSOP Player of the Year, but cashed just four times last year, making only one final table. Three weeks ago Danzer finished third in the $10,000 Seven Card Stud championship. Randy Ohel finished second for his fifth cash of the 2016 WSOP. Brunson, who began Day 3 with the chip lead, was unable to continue his momentum from Day 2 and ended up finsihed fifth. Mike Leah, who sold pieces for this event on YouStake, finished 11th for $23,665. Final Table Payouts George Danzer - $338,646 Randy Ohel - $209,302 Justin Bonomo - $148,601 Esther Taylor-Brady - $107,551 Todd Brunson - $79,381 Eli Elezra - $59,773 Scott Clements - $45,935 David Grey - $36,044 Event #44: Just 19 Remain in $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em; Young Sik Eum Leads Young Sik Eum is one of just two players to finish Day 2 of the $1,000 No Limit Hold'em event with over 1,000,000 chips in their bag. Eum finished with 1,400,000 and the overnight chip lead. Right behind him is Michael Shanahan with 1,079,000. Just 19 players remain in the hunt for the bracelet and $298,849 first place prize money. No matter who wins this tourney they will be a first-time bracelet winner as none of the remaining 19 have ever tasted a WSOP victory before. The most accomplished tournament player remaining is Justin Zaki. With over $1.6 million in lifetime earnings, including $218,771 from a fourth place finish at the 2013 WSOP, Zaki's accomplishments dwarf the rest of the final 19 combined. Action resumes at Noon PT and will play down to a winner. Top 10 Chip Counts Young Sik Eum - 1,400,000 Michael Shanahan - 1,079,000 Dejan Boskovic - 898,000 Julien Martini - 710,000 Steven Wolansky - 708,000 Brad Myers - 670,000 Niel Mittelman - 670,000 Danny Illingworth - 668,000 Todd Hayes - 620,000 Sven Reichardt - 600,000 Event #45: Loren Klein Leads $1,500 NLHE/PLO into Day 3 Finishing Day 1 with a chip lead rarely means much at the WSOP, but Loren Klein took his Day 1 chip lead and carried it over to Day 2 in the $1,500 Mixed No Limit Hold'em/Pot Limit Omaha event. Klein finished Day 2 with 1,079,00 and that puts him on top with just 15 players remaining. Right behind Klein is Steven Gagliano with 957,000. Former WPT500 winner Craig Varnell finished with the fourth biggest stack with 689,000. Varnell already has one final table appearance at the 2016 WSOP, finishing seventh in the $2,00 No Limit Hold'em event two weeks ago. Among the players who busted on Monday but still managed to find a cash out of it were Ashton Griffin (16th - $8,367), Jason DeWitt (17th - $8,367), John Racener (19th - $6,820), Niall Farrell (21st - $6,820) and Taylor Paur (56th - $3,550). Top 10 Chip Counts Loren Klein - 1,079,000 Steven Gagliano - 957,000 Dmitry Savelyev - 760,000 Craig Varnell - 689,000 Matthew Humphrey - 504,000 Rick Alvarado - 394,000 Sergio Fretes - 363,000 Chris Back - 355,000 Kyle Bowker - 324,000 Eric Penner - 320,000 Event #46: Jonathan Dimmig Leads $1,500 Event The $1,500 Bounty No Limit Hold'em event brought out 2,158 players on Monday with just 308 advancing to Day 2. Jonathan Dimmig finished Day 1 with the biggest stack after putting 270,800 in his bag at the end of the opening 10 levels. Joao Vieira sitsthird with 187,000 and Kitty Kuo finished fifth with 168,200. Other notables still in the field include Martin Jacobson (110,100), Matt Stout (98,500), Chris Moorman (86,600) and Ryan Riess (58,600). The $1,500 event is the only Bounty event on the WSOP schedule this year but some players are already campaigning for bigger events for 2017. Top 10 Chip Counts Abe Mosseri - 334,000 Paul Volpe - 333,500 Dan Shak - 311,500 Erik Sagstrom - 302,000 JC Tran - 286,500 Brandon Delnano - 270,000 Danny Wong - 232,000 Scott Abrams - 228,500 Brant Hale - 220,000 Viacheslav Zhukov - 219,500
  3. [caption width="640"] Mitchell Towner had only planned to play one WSOP event this summer - and he won it (WSOP photo)[/caption] Many recreational players anxiously await the WSOP schedule every year so that they can pick the one event they're going to play. Mitchell Towner was one of those players and when he saw the 2016 World Series of Poker schedule he realized the $1,500 Monster Stack would be happening pretty close to a Las Vegas conference he already had plans to attend. So he played it. And on Tuesday night he did what ever recreational player dreams of and one his first WSOP bracelet. Towner was one of two players to win a bracelet on Tuesday as Loren Klein won one of his own. Those two were the big winners on Tuesday, but there were more than a few big names who made big moves towards bracelets of their own on Tuesday as well. Event #41: Mitchell Towner Wins Monster Stack Mitchell Towner picked one WSOP event to play this summer: the Monster Stack. On Tuesday night the 29-year-old University of Arizona professor proved that he had made the right decision by winning the Monster Stack and the $1,120,196 first place prize money. “When I was a college student, I never had any money. Now that I’m a professor, I had an extra $1,500 that I could play one event,” said Towner. Towner beat Venezualan poker pro Dorian Rios heads-up for the bracelet. Towner was in Las Vegas for a conference and the Monster Stack just happened to fit his schedule. “I came here for a conference and planned to play just one event. I might play the Main Event, too,” Towner said. “But after this, for me, it’s head back to work.” David Pham finished fifth for $289,497. Longtime PocketFiver Chris 'hattrick8810' Odle finished 19th for $39,027. The Monster Stack attracted 6,927 players and generated a total prize pool of $9,351,450 Final Table Payouts Mitchell Towner - $1,120,196 Dorian Rios - $692,029 Stephen Nussrallah - $513,902 Daniel DiPasquale - $384,338 David Pham - $289,497 Andrew Moreno - $219,632 David Valcourt - $167,838 Marshall White - $129,197 Cody Pack - $100,185 Event #44: Just Two Players in $1,000 No Limit Hold'em The $1,000 No Limit Hold'em event was supposed to end on Tuesday but Wenlong Jin and Steven Wolansky just couldn't cooperate. The two players are the last two remaining out of the 2,076 who played the event. Jin and Wolansky played over three hours of heads-up poker before bagging up for the night. Jin holds a slight chip lead with 5,262,000 to Wolansky's 5,120,000. The pair will resume play at Noon and play down to a winner. Heads-up Chip Counts Wenlong Jin - 5,262,000 Steven Wolansky - 5,120,000 Event #45: Loren Klein Goes Wire to Wire $1,500 Mixed NLHE/PLO [caption width="640"] Loren Klein lead the ,500 Mixed NLHE/PLO event from beginning to end. (WSOP photo)[/caption] At the end of Day 1 of the $1,500 Mixed No Limit Hold'em/Pot Limit omaha event, Loren Klein was at the top of the chip counts. When players bagged up at the end of Day 2, Klein was still leading. And when the tournament wrapped up on Tuesday night, Klein was posing for the bracelet winner's photo after beating out Dmitry Savelyev heads-up to win the first bracelet of his career. “It’s about money.It’s about glory.It’s about bracelets.I guess I like them all," Klein said after his win. This is Klein's fourth cash of the 2016 WSOP and 23rd of his career - all but one of those have come in either No Limit Hold'em or Pot Limit Omaha events. “These are definitely my two best games." Klein earned $241,427 for the win while Savelyev walked away with $149,177 for his runner-up performance. Craig Varnell, who won the WPT500 event last summer, finished 11th. Final Table Payouts Loren Klein - $241,427 Dmitry Savelyev - $149,177 Rick Alvarado - $104,784 Michael Noori - $74,634 Matthew Humphrey - $53,915 Eric Penner - $39,510 Alexandr Orlov - $29,378 David Callaghan - $22,168 Steven Gagliano - $16,980 Event #46: Former November Niner Leads $1,500 Bounty Event after Day 2 Steve Gee has some experience in making deep runs in big No Limit Hold'em fields and it's paying off in the $1,500 Bounty NLHE event. The former November Niner leads the final 36 players in the event with 1,675,000. Right behind Gee is 2013 WSOP Ladies Champion Kristen Bicknell with 1,446,000. Kitty Kuo has the third biggest stack after Day 2, finishing with 871,000. Calvin Anderson also advanced to Day 3, finishing with 546,000. Top 10 Chip Counts Steve Gee - 1,675,000 Kristen Bicknell - 1,446,000 Kitson Kho - 871,000 Sebastien Comel - 829,000 Fadi Hamad - 749,000 Jason Singleton - 711,000 Ben Marsh - 686,000 Josip Simunic - 666,000 Norbert Szecsi - 609,000 Milan Simko - 575,000 Event #47: Chris Klodnicki Leads $10,000 Triple Draw Championship Many people consider Chris Klodnicki to be one of the best players to have never won a WSOP bracelet. Just eight other players stand in Klodnicki's way of removing his name from that list. Klodnicki leads the final nine players in the $10,000 Triple Draw Championship after putting 1,910,000 in the bag at the end of Day 2 Tuesday. If Klodnicki is going to succeed he's going to need to make his way through a mine field of talented players. Three-time WSOP bracelet winner Michael Gathy, who just won the $5,000 Six Max NLHE event, sits second with 1,337,000. Another three-time bracelet winner, John Hennigan, is third. JC Tran and Viacheslav Zhukov, who have two bracelets each, round out the to five. The bubble burst on Tuesday and ten players managed to make it into the money before busting. Erik Sagstrom, Jon Turner, Stephen Chidwick, Dzmitry Urbanovich and Daniel Negreanu all managed to cash. Christopher Vitch, who won his first bracelet earlier this week in the $1,500 Mixed Triple Draw event, finished 10th. The final nine players are back in action at 2 PM PT. Final Nine Chip Counts Chris Klodnicki - 1,910,000 Michael Gathy - 1,337,000 John Hennigan - 787,000 JC Tran - 557,000 Viacheslav Zhukov - 487,000 Scott Abrams - 360,000 Abe Mosseri - 335,000 Brant Hale - 322,000 Andrey Zhigalov - 156,000 - Event #48: Michael Mizrachi Bags Big Stack in $5,000 Turbo Eduards Kudrjavcevs finished Day 1 of the $5,000 Turbo event with the chip lead but the group of 48 players chasing him includes some of the most accomplished NLHE players in the world. Kudrjavcevs finished with 640,000, which puts him barely ahead of Michael Mizrachi, who finished with 608,000. The top 10 also includes Ankush Mandavia, Max Silver, Kyle Julius, Dietrich Fast and Chance Kornuth. Another player who made it through Day 1 was Jason Mercier. With two bracelets already this summer, Mercier just needs one more to win a massive prop bet that was originally with Vanessa Selbst, althought Mike McDonald ended up buying a large piece of the bet after Jason won his first bracelet earlier this summer. McDonald also advanced to Day 2, finishing just ahead of Mercier with 327,000. One of the shorter stackes returning for Day 2 is Phil Hellmuth. The all-time leader in WSOP bracelets and cashes finished with just 122,000. The final 49 players return at Noon PT to play down to a winner. Top 10 Chip Counts Eduards Kudrjavcevs - 640,000 Michael Mizrachi - 608,000 Ankush Mandavia - 590,000 Max Silver - 536,000 Kyle Julius - 488,000 Pedro Oliveira - 480,000 Dietrich Fast - 431,000 Assani Fisher - 406,000 Chance Kornuth - 405,000 Fabrizio Gonzalez - 396,000 Event #49: Naoya Kihara Leads $1,500 Seven Card Stud Japanese poker pro Naoya Kihara finished Day 1 of the $1,500 Seven Card Stud with the biggest stack after bagging up 89,000. Right behind Kihara is Yaniv Birman with 84,900 and Brandon Cantu with 83,000. Benny Glaser, fresh off of winning his second WSOP bracelet of the summer, finished with 64,000, the sixth biggest Day 1 stack. Other bracelet winners to advance to Day 2 include Robert Mizrachi, Matt Grapenthien, John Monnette, Shaun Deeb, Dan Idema and Andre Akkari. Action resumes at 2 PM PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Naoya Kihara - 89,000 Yaniv Birman - 84,900 Brandon Cantu - 83,000 Frank Athey - 65,200 Ivan Schertzer - 64,700 Benny Glaser - 64,000 Yuebin Guo - 62,200 Matt Grapenthien - 61,800 Cory Zeidman - 61,100 Robert Mizrachi - 60,000
  4. The 2016 World Series of Poker crowned two new champions on Saturday, the Monster Stack Part Deux fielded a huge crowd and the $10,000 Seven Card Stud HiLo Championship was the late event. Martin Kozlov Wins $10,000 Six Max Championship in 6th Final Table [caption width="640"] Martin Kozlov won his first gold bracelet in second Six Max final table.[/caption] Martin Kozlov played his way to the final table of one of the most prestigious events on the WSOP schedule, just came off a fifth place finish in last week’s Six Max event and won his first bracelet for a whopping $665,709. Kozlov’s win came in of a Hollywoodesque hand where knocked out Davidi Kitai and Justin Bonomo holding the best hand and flopped a monster. “That was crazy, I picked up a hand, raised and two players move all in – then I hit quads,” Kozlov said moments after his win. He opened on the button, Bonomo moved all in from the small blind and Kitai re-shoved from the big blind with pocket sixes. Kozlov called with pocket queens, covered both players and Bonomo tabled pocket nines. The flop came hit with two queens and Kozlov’s opponents were drawing dead. “I was expecting it to play out longer with these two good players,” he added. “I feel blessed. I’m going to take some time off from come poker, but come back and play the Main (Event).” Chris Ferguson made his first final table since 2009 and was greeted by boos from rail. He finished in fourth and the crowd sung, “Nanana, nanana, nanana, hey hey, goodbye,” when he was eliminated. Reportedly former Full Tilt CEO Ray Bitar was on the rail to support Ferguson. Final Table Payouts Martin Kozlov - $665,709 Davidi Kitai - $411,441 Justin Bonomo - $271,856 Chris Ferguson - $183,989 Nick Petrangelo - $127,622 Jack Salter - $90,783 Christopher Vitch Wins 1st Bracelet in 2nd Final Table of 2016 [caption width="640"] Chris Vitch, co-ownder of DeucesCracked, won first WSOP bracelet.[/caption]The WSOP added a new event to the schedule in 2016; a mix of three popular Lowball variants – Deuce to Seven, Ace to Five and Badugi. The mix of games are generally favored by cash game players over tournament players and Christopher Vitch stepped away from the cash games to take down his first bracelet. “I don’t play many tournaments… I used to come out and play the cash games,” Vitch said. “I’d rarely play the tournaments, but when I came out last year I got bitten by the bug. To me, it’s not about the money, I looked at the World Series and I wanted to win a bracelet.” “I became one of the better players in Triple Draw before there was much information about the game,” he added. “I feel like I had lots of experience in the game compared to most people who were just picking it up.” Vitch was a coach and co-owner of the training site DeucesCracked. Final Table Payouts Christopher Vitch - $136,854 Siegfried Stockinger - $84,572 David Gee - $55,511 Damjam Radanov - $37,375 Michael Schiffman - $25,830 Gary Benson - $18,336 Steven Harper Tops Monster Day 1B Field, 2001 Players to Day 2 The second of two starting flights drew 4,507 entrants – more than twice of Day 1A – for a total field of 6,927 total runners. The total Day 2 field has 2,001 survivors, 697 from Friday and 1,304 from Saturday. Steven Harper leads the Day 1B field with 279,700, well above Gregory Alexander’s stack of 253,300 of Day 1A. Jake Schindler bagged up in the top ten but joining him with six-figure stacks at the top are Matt Gianetti, Christina Lindley, Gaelle Baumann and Brian Yoon. The field built a $9,351,450 prize pool to payout 1,040 players. Five-figure payouts begin with 90th place, a trip to the final table guarantees $100,185 and the winner earns $1,120,196. Day 1B Top Ten Chip Counts Steven Harper – 279,700 Peter Braglia – 232,500 Patrick Muleta – 213,000 Bart Lybaert – 190,500 Joseph Wurtz – 188,600 David McLaughlin – 183,000 Jake Schindler – 182,600 Christopher Stammet – 178,600 Evan Jarvis – 171,400 Harry Lodge – 171,300 Event 42: $3,000 No Limit Hold’em Shootout The field drew 400 players, a rare sell out, and 40 players returned for Day 2. Instead of four ten-handed tables for a short-handed final table the WSOP opted for ten four-handed tables on Day 2. Sunday’s final table features ten players with effectively even stacks. Maria Ho, Faraz Jaka and Stephen Chidwick look to be the favorites on paper but all three players look to win their first bracelet. Final Table Chip Counts Faraz Jaka - 598,000 Jesse Yaginuma - 598,000 Christopher Kruk – 597,000 Maria Ho – 597,000 Marcos Antunes – 597,000 Andreas Freund – 597,000 Rhys Jones – 597,000 Kyle Montgomery – 596,000 Stephen Chidwick – 596,000 Phillip McAllister – 596,000 Event 43: $10,000 Seven Card Stud HiLo Championship One of the four remaining $10,000 Championship buy-in events on the schedule kicked off at 3 pm with Seven Card Stud HiLo. The tournament drew 136 entrants, 51 players advance to Day 2 with Randy Ohel leading the field. The field is loaded with notables and Dzmitry Urbanovich, Mike Gorodinsky, Brian Rast and Scott Clements bagged up just outside the top ten. The field combined for a $1,278,400 prize pool for the top 21 finishers. A trip to the final table locks up $36,044 and the winner walks with $338,646 for three days of work. Top Ten Chip Counts Randy Ohel - 372,000 George Danzer - 338,000 Ali Abduljabbar - 252,000 Eli Elezra - 244,000 Ryan Miller - 225,000 Edouard Mignotbonnefous - 215,000 Adam Friedman - 214,000 David Benyamine - 212,500 Tom Koral - 210,000 Per Hildebrand - 201,500 Sunday Funday with Low Buy-ins Two budget conscious events kick off on Sunday for the weekend crowd in for the Monster Stack event. The early event is a $1,000 No Limit Hold’em event and action junkies will like the $1,500 No Limit Hold’em/Pot Limit Omaha Mix at 3 pm.
  5. [caption width="640"] The World Series of Poker has 74 events on the schedule but only five are considered "must play."[/caption] It’s almost here. The 2017 World Series of Poker edges closer on the poker horizon with each passing day. The excitement sticks to every player whether it is an amateur taking their chance or a tournament grinder trying to fight their way out of makeup. The WSOP schedule has a whopping 74 events on it but only five tournaments are worthy of “must play” status. #5 - The Millionaire Maker - $1,500 buy-in - June 10-14One omission that some might have a few gripes about is The Colossus. It is understandable that a $565 buy-in event with $1,000,000 guaranteed for first place is appealing, but why fight a through a field of 23,000 when you can play the Millionaire Maker? The crown jewel of WSOP novelty events, Millionaire Maker is entering its fifth year and has made dreams come true for players of all walks of life who just wanted to turn $1,500 into $1,000,000 in a span of four days. Why this event over Colossus? Well, for one, the structure is far superior. 7,500 chips and 60-minute levels are a far better value than the 5,000 and 30-minute Day 1 levels that the Colossus offers. Obviously, bankroll levels differ, but if you are already planning to invest three bullets into the Colossus, why not just play Millionaire Maker once? It’s a lottery ticket, either way you scratch it off. #4 - The Marathon - $2,620 buy-in - June 12-16In 2015, the World Series introduced the Extended Play event. The 90-minute levels proved to be a hit among the $1,500 price point crowd. Last year, the event was rebranded as the Summer Solstice and this summer, The Marathon will be upon us. $2,620 buy in. 26,200 starting stack. 100-minute levels for the full tournament. It’s about as close to a World Poker Tour structure as the WSOP gets and the mid-range buy in should attract a healthy mix of top pros looking to play a five-day tournament and recreational players trying to maximize their time away from the office. #3 - Dealers Choice - $1,500 buy-in - June 5-7Another event recently introduced to the WSOP this decade, the $1,500 Dealers Choice event is by far one of the most purely fun events the World Series puts on. With 20 games to choose from and a variety of players of unique backgrounds in the event, there is literally something for everyone. Among the champions of this event include Robert Mizrachi, Hollywood writer Carol Fuchs, and last year’s winner, former poker dealer Lawrence Berg. If you’re looking for an entertaining, but tremendously competitive event, this tournament, and this price point is the one for you. #2 - The Monster Stack - $1,500 buy-in - June 24-28There is no event at the World Series that is as revered for how much pure enjoyment it provides than the Monster Stack. While not officially branded as a “millionaire maker” tournament, the event has brought the winner at least that much in its three years of existence. You know the deal by now. $1,500 buy in. 15,000 starting stack. Over 6,500 runners. Let the games begin. Monster Stack also has done the job of introducing fans to new faces and reminding them of some of the game’s greats. Joe McKeehen burst onto the national stage when he finished second in 2014 (his first of three straight years with a score of at least $800,000). In the past two years, legends of the game like David Pham, Hoyt Corkins, and Poker Hall of Famer TJ Cloutier all made deep runs that made everyone realize their greatness once again. Monster Stack is the best $1,500 event for a reason. We’ll see what new adventures it provides this year. #1 - The Main Event - $10,000 buy-in - July 8-22There is literally zero question about what belongs here; the WSOP Main Event is the greatest event in poker for a reason. It’s the tournament that ignited the poker boom and remains a one-of-a-kind experience for all who pony up the $10,000 entry fee. In what was perhaps the most memorable Main Event since Michael Mizrachi chased down the Player of the Year title in 2010, an ocean of top-notch pros reached Day 6 but by the time the dust settled in November, it was an amateur who topped them all. Qui Nguyen is the best thing to happen to televised poker in years and there might be a new rush of raccoon hat wearing, back-raising newcomers ready to enter in their first Main Event in hopes of duplicating his feat. With a 50,000 starting stack in place, it is sure to be another reg-heavy field deep but as last year proved, all you need is a seat and a dream in order to be the next banner raised in the Amazon Room.
  6. Week #4 2017 World Series of Poker gets going on Monday and there are 13 events on the schedule this week. Following Chris Moorman’s victory in the $3,000 Six Max last Friday, there are two more Six Max NLHE events that will award bracelets this week, including the highly coveted $10,000 Championship. Warning: Lots of Legroom Jokes on Twitter This Week The two biggest Six Max No Limit Hold’em events of the Summer will play down to a winner this week. The final table of the $5,000 Six Max NLHE event is scheduled for Tuesday and the next day the $10,00 Six Max NLHE Championship starts. Last year, Martin Kozlov beat Davidi Kitai to win the first bracelet of his career and $665,709 after topping the 294-player field. The Monster Stack Returns For the fourth straight year, the $1,500 Monster Stack is back on the schedule. Two starting days and a whopping 15,000 starting stack for a $1,500 buy-in has proven to be pretty popular. Look a little harder at the numbers though, and you’ll notice the field size has dipped each year since its inception. With a good chunk of the 2017 schedule returning smaller fields than 2016, you can bet the Monster Stack might see an all-time low turnout yet again. Monster Stack Field Sizes Year-Over-Year YearEntriesWinnerWinnings 20166,927Mitchell Towner$1,120,196 20157,192Perry Shiao$1,286,942 20147,862Hugo Pingray$1,327,083 Bounty Hunters Headed to the Rio The shortest live event on the 2017 WSOP schedule is the $1,000 No Limit Hold'em Super Turbo with bounties, a one-day event running on June 20. It's one of two events this year where players can collect a bounty for each player they eliminate. The other is a three-day event scheduled for next week. Taking it to the Limit The $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship runs Monday - Wednesday and is one of three Championship events on the schedule this week. Last year, Ian Johns beat out a 110-player field to win $290,635 and his first career bracelet. The third Championship event on the schedule this week is the Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event. George Danzer won the event in 2016, beating Randy Ohel heads-up, to win $338,646. EVENT #DATESBUY-INEVENT 37June 19 - 21$1,000No Limit Hold'em 38June 19 - 21$10,000Limit Hold'em Championship 39June 20$1,000No Limit Hold'em Super Turbo w/bounties 40June 20 - 22$1,500Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo 41June 21 - 23$1,500Pot Limit Omaha 42June 21 - 23$10,000Six Max No Limit Hold'em Championship 43June 22 - 24$1,500NLHE Shootout 44June 22 - 24$3,000HORSE 45June 23 - 24$5,000No Limit Hold'em (30 minute levels) 46June 23 - 25$1,500Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 47June 24 - 27$1,500Monster Stack NLHE 48June 24 - 26$10,000Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo Championship 49June 25 - 27$3,000Six Max Pot Limit Omaha
  7. [CAPTION=98%]The Pavilion Room will be filled to capacity every weekend of the World Series of Poker as thousands of "Weekend Warriors" take their shot at a bracelet.[/CAPTION] Each year the World Series of Poker carefully plans its schedule around the lower buy-in No Limit Hold’em events that run every weekend of the series. This is done to cater to the “Weekend Warriors” who only have one or two weekends a year to play in a WSOP event. All of these events carry a catchy name and huge fields guaranteed to give all players the maximum bang for their buck. Here at PocketFives, as part of our 2017 WSOP Preview, we are happy to provide a list of all the novelty events running over the course of the summer to give every Weekend Warrior the information they need to go to Las Vegas and return with an experience of a lifetime - and maybe even a bracelet. The Colossus (June 2-June 7): The most attended event of the World Series is back for the third consecutive year with an $8,000,000 guarantee available for only a $565 buy-in. Both years of this event, the field has reached over 20,000 entrants and 2017 should be no different. The first of six starting flights kicks off on Friday, June 2 with two available each day through Sunday, June 4. The 5,000 chip starting stack is a deviation from the 5x starting stack per buy-in of most WSOP events and provides a relatively good bang for the buck. For the second straight year, $1,000,000 is guaranteed to first place and the largest lottery drawing in all of poker always provides an exciting start to the summer. Millionaire Maker (June 7-June 14): The novelty event that started them all, Millionaire Maker is a permanent staple of the WSOP schedule. Now its fifth year on the schedule, Millionaire Maker draws every hopeful in poker who is looking to turn $1,500 into a least $1,000,000. The first place guarantee is a relative rarity in poker and every year since the event was first introduced, that number has been exceeded. Two starting flights are available for Millionaire Maker with one on Friday, June 7 and the other on Saturday, June 8. At least 6,500 entrants are expected for this event and by the time it wraps on Day 4, another seven-figure winner will exit the Rio with all the glory along with a bracelet. Seniors Weekend (June 16-June 20): While most of the younger WSOP-going crowd is out attending Electric Daisy Carnival, the older generation takes center stage. For players age 50 and over, the $1,000 Seniors event starts on June 16 and wraps up on June 18. A few days later, those 65 and up are eligible to participate in the $1,000 Super Seniors tournament. Both events are among the most joyful and fun to participate in tournaments of the summer and this year should be no different come the middle of June. Monster Stack (June 24-28): Perhaps the most must play event of the entire Weekend Warrior schedule, Monster Stack IV starts on June 24 with another humongous field expected. All previous runnings of Monster Stack have featured a first place prize of over $1,000,000 and this year should be no different. As with every year of its existence, the $1,500 buy-in event provides all entrants with a starting stack of 15,000 and 60-minute levels for the full duration of the tournament. This tournament always has a special aura surrounding it and the World Series will crown another millionaire once the dust settles on June 28. Crazy $888 (July 1-4): The second annual Crazy $888 event provides something for everyone, from an affordable buy in to the eight-centric theme which features an $888,888 first place prize. There are four starting flights for this event, two on Saturday, July 1 and two on Sunday, July 2. The tournament starts with an 8,000 chip starting stack and plays eight-handed for its entirety. Last year’s Crazy $888 event drew a field of 6,761 and with the starting stack increasing this year from 5,000 to 8,000 and payouts starting on every Day 1 flight, there should be an increase in attendance for the final novelty event prior to the Main Event. The Giant: (June 9-July 8): The WSOP is known for their great structures but a month long event; that’s crazy, right? Well, not exactly. Similar to the format of the WPT 500 at Aria, The Giant offers five Day 1 starting flights beginning on June 9 and each subsequent Friday before all Day 2 qualifiers combine on Day 2. All Day 1 levels are 20 minutes and players start with 20,000 chips. Each starting flight will play until the end of 18 levels or until 10 players remain. Days 2 and 3 provide 40-minute levels and the unlimited re-entry event has payouts for each starting flight.
  8. The World Series of Poker plans the bulk of its events around the schedules of the thousands of recreational players who fly in every summer. Low buy-in events with millions in the prize pool along with some gimmicky names bring in the "Weekend Warriors." Names like Millionaire Maker and Monster Stack are on the schedule once again with a few other brands mixed in. No matter when John Smith (No, not THAT John Smith) gets a weekend away for some tournaments, there are major ones to be played. The Colossus III (June 2-June 7) The largest field of the summer can be expected again for this $565 behemoth. There is no set guarantee on the event in 2018, but the $1 million guaranteed first-place prize remains. Two flights play out on June 2, 3, and 4 each day at 10:00 am and 5:00 pm, respectively. The 15% payouts for each flight along with the three percent advancement rate equals a lot of re-entries and a large prize pool. PocketFiver Thomas 'pompyouup' Pomponio conquered 18,054 runners on his way to becoming the first seven-figure prize winner of the 2018 WSOP. Who follows in his footsteps this summer? The answer is just over a month from discovery. Millionaire Maker (June 9-14) The godfather of WSOP novelty events is back for a sixth summer. Another field of over 7,000 hopefuls expects to fill all of the Rio's playing space in pursuit of the elusive million dollar first-place prize. The 7,761 entries in 2017 set one of the highest marks yet for Millionaire Maker and was won by Canadian Pablo Mariz. Players have four chances to gain Day 1 traction with two re-entries permitted for each starting flight. The two Day 1 sessions take place on June 9 and June 10 before the field combines on June 11. Min-cash or bust early? The Marathon starts on Monday, June 11 with registration open until midway through Day 2. Seniors Weekend (June 15-19) A full five days of poker devoted to the older crowd fits right in the middle of the summer hub. The $1,000 Seniors event starts on June 15 for players 50 and older and is followed by the $1,000 Super Seniors on June 17. Players are required to be at least 60 years of age to play the Super Seniors. Other properties have caught on to the popularity of the Seniors events at the WSOP. The Venetian, ARIA, and Golden Nugget all have the weekend of June 15 crossed off. Players interested in low buy-ins and four cards can play the Pot Limit Omaha Giant if they are eliminated from their Seniors events. The PLO Giant opens on Friday, June 3 and there is a flight on the books for June 17. Monster Stack (June 23-27) Another small buy-in, large reward event comes with you the fourth year of Monster Stack. $1,500 to buy-in and at least $1 million to first-place is enough to draw thousands upon thousands. A starting day on June 23 and 24 carries the balance of the event. Unlike Millionaire Maker, Monster Stack does not permit re-entries. Nonetheless, top pros and amateurs alike collide in the sprint to collect $1 million. Crazy Eights (June 30-July 3) The $888,888 guaranteed first-place prize in Crazy Eights was enough to draw 8,120 players last year. That number is the second-largest of the year and offers plenty of bang for the $888 buy-in. Two starting flights on June 30 and July 1 combined with unlimited re-entries place last year's number under surveillance. The final 'Weekend Warrior' prelim to the WSOP is a lock to be in contention to top 8,120 for 2018.
  9. The 2019 World Series of Poker is only growing closer. Continuing with our pre-WSOP coverage, PocketFives is comparing event structures for 2019 to ones from 2018, in an attempt to see if the WSOP's marketing push of "more value" is true or not. Spoiler: there is more value! As you saw with the 2019 WSOP Millionaire Maker structure, it's not simply more chips that have been added to the 2019 events. Our deep dive does show that indeed more value has been added to the events in the form of more play for those competing. Now, let's take a look at the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack structure. 2019 WSOP Monster Stack Structure Buy-In: $1,500 Starting Chips: 50,000 Level Duration: 60 minutes Late Registration Period: 10 levels Re-Entry: None Click here for structure sheet DATE EVENT DAY START TIME (PT) DAY LENGTH 6/21 Day 1A 10 a.m. 11 levels 6/22 Day 1B 10 a.m. 11 levels 6/23 Day 2 11 a.m. 10 levels 6/24 Day 3 11 a.m. 10 levels 6/25 Day 4 12 p.m. To six players 6/26 Day 5 12 p.m. To winner *Per WSOP structure sheet: In the event that the final table of this event gets selected for live streaming, management reserves rights to adjust the schedule as needed to accommodate. First, let's look at the blind structure for the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack. On this table, "BB depth" represents how many big blinds are in the starting stack if a player was to buy in during that level."M" represents a player's M ratio in regards to the starting stack. M can be calculated by dividing the starting stack by the sum of the small blind, big blind, and antes for a given round. Although M is a term that can get laughed at when it's brought up, using it provides a simple and informative comparative metric when looking at structure sheets. The 2019 WSOP Monster Stack is using a big blind ante format, so keep that in mind when thinking about the ante displayed here. For this table, levels during the registration period are shown, plus one additional level that you'd start playing if you registered right before registration closed. LEVEL ANTE BLINDS BB DEPTH M 1 - 100-100 500 250 2 - 100-200 250 166.67 3 200 100-200 250 100 4 300 100-300 166.67 71.43 5 400 200-400 125 50 6 500 300-500 100 38.46 7 600 300-600 83.33 33.33 8 800 400-800 62.5 25 9 1,000 500-1,000 50 20 10 1,200 600-1,200 41.67 16.67 11 1,600 800-1,600 31.25 12.5 As you can see, if you wait until the last minute to enter the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack, you'll begin the tournament with a stack of 31.25 big blinds entering Level 11. Just as in the Millionaire Maker, this appears pretty good on the surface when you consider the fact that tournament has already played 10 levels and you're coming in quite late. To best gauge the "more value" aspect and see if more value has been achieved, we'll compare the 2019 structure to the 2018 structure in this very same event. The next table shows this comparison. The starting stack for the 2018 WSOP Monster Stack was 15,000. In 2019, the Monster Stack has a starting stack of 50,000, giving players 3.33 times more chips to begin with. But, it's not just about the number of chips you start the tournament with. It's about the structure you play with those chips. For "ante," we took the standard ante from the 2018 structure and multiplied it by nine to show the cost of a full round of antes at a standard nine-handed table. This was done to align the comparisons better. 2018 Structure Compared To 2019 Structure LEVEL YEAR ANTE BLINDS BB DEPTH M 1 2018 0 25-50 300 200 2019 0 100-100 500 250 - - 2 2018 0 50-100 150 100 2019 0 100-200 250 166.67 - - 3 2018 0 75-150 100 66.67 2019 200 100-200 250 100 - - 4 2018 225 75-150 100 33.33 2019 300 100-300 166.67 71.43 - - 5 2018 225 100-200 75 28.57 2019 400 200-400 125 50 - - 6 2018 450 150-300 50 16.67 2019 500 300-500 100 38.46 - - 7 2018 450 200-400 37.5 14.29 2019 600 300-600 83.33 33.33 - - 8 2018 675 250-500 30 10.53 2019 800 400-800 62.5 25 - - 9 2018 900 300-600 25 8.33 2019 1,000 500-1,000 50 20 - - 10 2018 Reg. Closed 2019 1,200 600-1,200 41.67 16.67 - - 11 2018 Reg. Closed 2019 1,600 800-1,600 31.25 12.5 In 2018, registration lasted through eight levels, just as it did in the Millionaire Maker, whereas in 2019 it has been increased to 10 levels. For comparison purposes, we'll refer to the first nine levels as the "overlapping registration periods." Furthermore, although you could not enter the WSOP Monster Stack in Level 9 in 2018, you could still do so in the break right before it, giving you a fresh stack of 15,000 in chips to begin Level 9. The same then applies for 2019 and Level 11, when you'd start with 50,000 in chips. Looking at the comparison table between 2018 and 2019, we can see that at any point during the overlapping registration periods, the 2019 structure gives you more big blinds in the starting stack, and it's not really close. Players beginning the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack from the start are greeted with a starting stack that is a whopping 200 big blinds deeper than what was received in 2018. The added depth is carried throughout the overlapping registration periods to provide much more play. A player's M ratio is also much better throughout, giving players more flexibility within his or her stack size. In fact, even though players can register two levels later in the structure in 2019 when compared to 2018, entering at the very last moment in the registration period still yields a deeper starting stack. In 2018, if you entered right at the close of registration, you'd start Level 9 with 15,000 in chips and the blinds at 300-600 with a 100 ante. That's a starting stack depth of 25 big blinds and an M of 8.33. In 2019, if you entered right at the close of registration, you'd start Level 11 with 50,000 in chips and the blinds at 800-1,600 with a 1,600 big blind ante. That's a starting stack depth of 31.25 big blinds, which is 6.25 big blinds more than when registration closed the year before. You'll also have an M of 12.5, which is 1.5 times greater than the M would have been at the close of registration in 2018. That's quite the improvement for a tournament that was already considered to have one of the best structures of the summer. What Happens After Registration Closes? There's no need to worry about what happens in the later stages of the tournament, too. After registration closes, no level increments are skipped throughout the duration of the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack. You do get to larger blinds earlier in the 2019 structure, but the greater starting stack size makes up for it, as evidenced by the fact that a player has more big blinds in a starting stack when registration closes. To accommodate the deeper play of the 2019 structure, the WSOP Monster Stack is listed as a six-day event as compared to 2018's listing as a five-day event. An Added Day of Play In similar fashion to what was done with the 2019 WSOP Millionaire Maker structure, tournament organizers tacked on an extra day of play to the 2019 WSOP Monster Stack structure. With the added chips and increased depth of play throughout, having the Monster Stack end in four days of action would have been a tall task. The added day is welcomed foresight. Just like the Millionaire Maker, the verdict is that, yes, more value has been added to the WSOP Monster Stack in 2019. Want to know more? Check out 'Everything You Need To Know About the 2019 WSOP.'

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