PokerStars’ Victoria Coren Looks Back At Career In Poker, Porno and TV Presenting

New episode of The Bonus Cut talks to UK Poker Legend.

One of the most popular UK poker personalities, Victoria Coren, sits down with the PokerStars film crew to talk about her career in and out of poker. From her early years writing and submitting short stories to her current gigs creating various features and columns for poker publications, Coren explores her love/hate relationship with her role as a professional writer.

Writing has taken her down many paths, including some time as a TV presenter and a brief stint/comedy gig as a reviewer of porn (which led to her and her partner trying to actually make the best porno in the world). But, through it all though, the EPT London Champion keeps finding herself in the world of poker while working on a number of books and films on the side.

Despite being so busy professionally and being pulled in different directions, Coren still finds time to host a weekly small stakes home game with old friends where she eats as many donuts as she likes. Check it out!

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Gus Hansen Digging Out Of High-Stakes Hole

After dropping almost 900k, FTP Pro ends up $200k on day.

Last last night, or early this morning depending on your sleep cycle, we showed you this cool pic of Sebastian 'taktloss47’ Ruthenberg sitting with almost $1 Million dollars in front of him. Now, the details of that session are coming out and it turns out that “taktloss47” destroyed Full Tilt Professional Gus Hansen in a single session to the tune of $877k.

You may think that watching Hansen dump money online is nothing new, but here’s the good news for the struggling online pro: While he was bleeding to Ruthenberg, he was also sitting in a juicy $200/$400 CAP PLO table where, according to HighStakesDB, he was raking $300k! That’s not all, earlier in the day he was dragging 6-figure pots at the $2k/$4k 2-7 Tripe Draw (the same game he lost to Sebastian in) so before he dropped nearly $1 million in his session with Takt, he had a little bit of a cushion.

Finally, even after his epic run bad session with Sebastian, Hansen sat with him again, looking for some revenge. It was there that he staged a bit of a comeback winning BACK almost $240k of his previously lost cash. When Gus’s head hit the pillow after his epic day online – he was actually UP just over $200k and closed the day as one of the biggest online winners.

Ruthenberg for his part still won a pretty decent sized house on the day, finishing up over $532k on the day, according to the Full Tilt Blog.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari Blazes With His Dad

Epic #TBT Pic from 2013 Burning Man.

While this photo is a little old, it’s from the 2013 Burning Man, Antonio Esfandiari just posted it yesterday and it’s pretty cool. Check out Esfandiari hanging with good pal, high-stakes poker pro Brian Rast and, yes, that’s his pops right behind them.

All three sitting in the middle of the desert watching the massive bonfire that is Burnring Man.

Watching the man Burn this year w my Rasty ! #BurningMan #DadInBackground

Watch: Antonio Esfandiari Choose Money Over Magic

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Jonathan Duhamel Weighs In On Poker Ambassadorship

2010 WSOP Champ says a leadership role isn't for everyone.

It was just a few weeks ago, during the 2014 Aussie Millions, that the incendiary words of former WSOP World Champion Joe Hachem started a firestorm about what it means to be a poker ambassador and how the personality in poker has seemingly evaporated. Now, former champ Jonathan Duhamel has taken to the PokerStars Blog to have his say and, in general, he doesn’t see things as black and white.

Duhamel doesn’t really blame Jamie Gold or Jerry Yang for not being the epitome of poker goodwill.

Joe mentioned Jamie Gold and Jerry Yang in his comments (who won in 2006 and 2007) and how those two kind of disappeared from the poker scene after winning their titles, but to me that’s not necessarily good or bad. Sometimes a career in poker is not for everyone, especially for guys who have other jobs or families as can be the case for players who are a little older. Not everyone who wins the WSOP Main Event wants to tour all of the time or continue playing tournaments, and that is absolutely their choice.

Read: On WSOP champs, ambassadorship, and the future of poker

As far as how players should act at the table, in terms of being welcoming and exhibiting personality, that too, like many things in poker – depends.

Duhamel snaps a pic with Bay 101 runner Candice Collins.

I think a lot depends on the kind of tournament, too, when it comes to how players should act. For example, at EPT Main Events there are so many qualifiers playing that the field is going to be more varied with a lot more amateurs playing. The WSOP Main Event is like that, too, with players from all sorts of backgrounds participating. During those kinds of events it is even more important to be inviting and make the less experienced players feel comfortable and want to come back again. Of course, it’s easier to be friendly earlier in those events than later on, and so when you get deeper it’s okay, I think, to be more serious and talk less.

The champ makes a lot of good points, but, in general doesn’t take much of a stand either way except to say that you can’t really dictate to anyone if they should or shouldn’t be good for poker but that, overall, being a good person while playing poker is to the benefit of everyone.

It’s a quick read, well worth a few minutes of your time.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Poker Refugees Dishes Out The SCOOP on Playa Del Carmen

Since Black Friday the relocation services of Poker Refugees have helped roughly 400 players find a safe international place to grind. Now, they are actively pushing a new “all inclusive” package to help you take a trip to Mexico specifically to play the upcoming PokerStars Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP) in Playa del Carmen.

Poker Refugees is offering to handle the heavy lifting, since poker players aren’t necessarily considered the most organized individuals. Everything from round trip airfare, pre-approved accommodations with high speed internet (and backup internet) and they take care of the actual paying of the bills (you provide the money of course).

So, if you were looking to find a sweet spot to chill with other poker players and focus up on one of the biggest online series of the year, check this out. PokerStars SCOOP starts on May 4.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

High Stakes Online Pro Sebastian “Taktloss47” Ruthenberg Almost $1 Million Deep

Puts an arsenal on the table against Gus Hansen

World Series of Poker Bracelet winner and EPT Champion Sebastian 'Taktloss47’ Ruthenberg takes a virtual seat across from Full Tilt Poker Professional Gus Hansen and plops down nearly $1 million of online currency behind.

The pair were playing a little $2k/$4k 2-7 Triple Draw – which is a fixed limit game – meaning the German’s bankroll was never at an immediate risk and obviously cannot be “gotten in” at the push of a single button. Still, it’s an impressive sight to see so many number strung together with a dollar sign at the front, yea?

For what it’s worth, we’re pretty sure (from multiple sources online) that Taktloss47 is the German pro Ruthenberg, but even HighStakesDB- who posted this pic – does not have it as him on their site.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Dan Bilzerian Has An Itchy Trigger Finger

Gun totin' Beardo takes his shot.

Everyone knows that sometime high-stakes poker player Dan Bilzerian is a consumer of fast cars and high powered rifles. Well, he hit the shooting range the other night with a shotty and some clay pigeons to show everyone that he doesn’t need an alarm for home security.

Blasting skeet tonight, even got a couple shooting from the hip.

Speaking of shooting ranges: According to an article appearing on (The Special Operations Forces Situation Report), it turns out that Bilzerian was sooooo close to being a NAVY SEAL but it looks to be a safety violation on a shooting range that led to his training class dismissal.

I’ve verified that Dan was in BUD/S 229, 238, and 239 before being dropped from training with class 239 for a safety violation on the shooting range. To address the “no good reason” comment from Dan, in my opinion it’s likely that his instructors felt that he wasn’t a good fit for the SEAL community and were looking for any excuse to drop him from training. This why we call it a “selection” process, and it doesn’t end, even when you get to your SEAL Team. Dan, as a former instructor myself, I know that your instructors did have a good reason. Reflect on the reason and become a better man for it. After all, you did complete 99% of one of the hardest military selection courses in the world.

Not that anyone would dispute that he was tough enough to be a SEAL.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey Looks To Establish His Poker Legacy

Bracelets and Ivey League are his focus.

Yep! It’s another awesome segment of Phil Ivey candidly talking with Bluff Magazine video producer Thomas Keeling about everything under the sun. In this clip, an older, wiser and more personable Ivey ponders his legacy in poker, talks about what the Ivey League means to him, pledges support for the WSOP and qualifies Phil Hellmuth as a “great poker player…errr a great tournament poker player.”

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Shooting Star Pat Lyons Makes Plans To Gamble His Winnings Away

The polarizing Bay Area pro's hilarious Savage interview.

We’re giving Bay Area poker pro Pat Lyons a lot of F5 love this week as he’s the guy who risks his cell phone to bring us some of our favorite bad beat posts, he’s an entertaining, polarizing guy. As you may have read he’s already mixed it up with poker author Jonathan Little a couple of times (the pair have a shot at a trilogy as they are both still alive) and now he’s talking about what he’d do if he won the whole damn thing at Bay 101.

Here’s Pat talks about all of the ways in which he’ll “gambol gambol” his winnings away, trying to run it up into a small fortune by playing tiles on the “Asian side.” The Pat promotion machine never stops as Tournament Director Matt Savage tries to keep the train from falling off the tracks in this hilarious interview.

Pat is expected to be on the feature table today (now eliminated) when play resumes at Bay 101 at 12:00pm PST.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Take A Shot — Tips And Tricks For Better Poker Photography

Capture the tension of poker like the pros.

BJ Nemeth. Joe Giron. Neil Stoddard. Hell, even WhoJedi. You most likely don’t know these these names (well, except for that last one) but they are the unsung heroes of tournament reporting.

BJ, Joe and Neil are some of the more well known photographers on the poker media landscape as they follow the World Poker Tour and the European Poker Tour bringing you shots from the tournament floor to help you feel a little closer to the action. But capturing the energy of a big time poker decision, the anguish over calling with AK, isn’t as simple as point and click…it takes skill. Skill that you can learn too with some help from these tips courtesy of Russel Ray Photography.

When it comes to poker photography, it’s not just about taking random shots here and there. It’s about amplifying the energy inherent in these gaming sessions, an energy that’s otherwise hidden from unsuspecting eyes.

So what can you do when in Las Vegas this year for the WSOP to snap a killer pic of The Poker Brat on a rampage? Start with lighting:

Lighting is everything in this field of art, and since poker is an indoor sport that often isn’t too brightly lit, increasing your camera’s ISO to within the 900-1000 range allows more light to enter the lens.

Want to capture the intensity of the passage of time on a decision? Shutter speed!

In direct contrast to something like an NBA game where a fast shutter speed is of the utmost importance, slowing that speed down is the way to go with poker. Not only will it help highlight your subject, but you could also get cool shots such as when the player you’re taking a photo of casually flips his poker chips.

So, if you are looking for more ways to take high level poker photos, check out this short article Capturing the cards in photography: Beginner’s pointers for poker photography

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Jason Somerville Looking For Value At UFC171

Ultimate Poker's UFC Fight By Numbers pre-game show is back.

The last time Jason Somerville made his picks on a UFC card he had a decisive victory, going 3-0 and providing winners to all who took the time to watch. Well, Somerville is back breaking down this Saturday’s UFC171 Pay-Per-View event where Robbie Lawler and Johny Hendricks battle for Georges St. Pierre’s newly vacated Welterweight Championship belt.

From the #RunItUp Studios, Somerville makes his case, using the same math based logic he impliments when reviewing tough poker decisions, in both the Championship fight as well as the co-main event of Carlos Condit vs. Tyronne Woodley.

For all the fight fans out there, check out who will win this weekend and why…unless of course there’s a rear naked choke on the river.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Jake Cody Not “Going Down There” When His Baby Is Born

PokerStars Pro on dealing with baby wait.

Team PokerStars Pro Jake Cody has a lot on his mind. His girlfriend, Alex, is two weeks away from giving birth to his first daughter, Arianna, and, in anticipation, Cody has been watching some “quite graphic” videos of what is about to transpire and he’s taken to the PokerStars blog to deal with his feelings.

Meanwhile I’d say I am about 89% excited, and the rest a little bit scared. It’s all starting to seem a lot more real now that we’re getting so close. In the baby classes we’ve been shown a lot of videos which are quite graphic and I think scarred me a little bit. I’m starting to think I’m not really going to go down there too much on the big day, but I’ll try to help Alex as much as I can.

That’s not to say that Cody isn’t learning all he can about baby things before his little one arrives.

I’ve learned about baby massage, which I didn’t even now was a real thing, but apparently is. We spent three hours one yesterday, though, that really didn’t help me too much — it was a breast-feeding class.

But even with a baby on the way, the poker pro has found some time to play in the Florida cash games…just to take his mind off the stress. Baby Cody means big changes for Jake and from the sound of it, he’s dealing with it the best he knows how. Check it out.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Phil Laak and Jason Mercier Shine At Shooting Star

Laak breaks out his special WPT poker goggles.

While everyone may think that Phil Laak and Antonio Esfandiari are true BFF’s some forget that Laak is also has quite a history with the oft-emo Jason Mercier (seen here actually smiling!). In fact, the duo not only tangled in one of the most memorable hands ever in the NBC Head-Up Poker Championship…

...but also Laak paid Mercier 1k back in 2011 for the privilege of being able to know some pretty intimate stuff about Jason.

The pair enter day two of the Shooting Star with their bounty in tact.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Patrik Antonius Forced To Relive Worst Poker Nightmare

Ivey League promo vid rehashes 800K loss.

Team Ivey pro Patrik Antonius and his good poker frienemy Phil Ivey sit down to talk about one of the largest pots either one of them have ever played on television. In a sit down session for an Ivey League promotional video, Ivey and Antonius are asked to take us through the notorious Sky Poker hand (posted after the jump) where the pair dig deep into their bankroll as well as go multi-levels deep in thought thanks to “props.”

“This is my worst memory of all the hands…this is my worst experience…” Patrik says.

Watch how painful the retelling of the story is and then see the hand as it played out below.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey – “You Have To Be Careful With Who You Become Friends With.”

Ivey talks about his inner circle in the world of high stakes.

In an obvious effort to get more traction here on the monster website that is F5, Bluff Magazine has released part 3 of their stand-up interview with poker great Phil Ivey. In this clip Bluff video producer Thomas Keeling talks to Ivey about who he considers his real friends in poker and how close to the vest is he with those he plays against.

Ivey claims to like most of his fellow high-stakes competitors but he likes to keep them at a distance as not to feel responsible for them with negative variance comes calling for them. He calls it “cordial” for the most part but is always wary of who he chooses to schmooze with.


How many more parts does Bluff have in the can? Stay tuned, as this Ivey interview is one of the best in recent memory so we’ll feature every one of them!

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari Chooses Money Over Magic

Antonio hits the strip to dazzle tourists in Strip Magic Part II.

Ultimate Poker released another part of the mini documentary about the magical past of their UP brand ambassador Antonio Esfandiari.

This time, he hits the Las Vegas strip with a deck of cards and befuddles the passerby’s with clever card cutting and slight of hand. Another fun video delving into the past of one of poker’s premiere personalities.

Check out Episode One of Strip Magic

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Jonathan Little: Lyons Tamer

Little and Lyons go head-to-head at Shooting Star.

Sweet revenge was served for poker author Jonathan Little yesterday during Day 1B of the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star. First we need to rewind a couple days to the preliminary event when word broke on Twitter that Jonathan Little had busted the 2k at the hands of F5 pal and bad beat photog Pat Lyons...but in his exit, he called Lyons an angle shooter.

In the hand Little claims that Lyons pulled the old “I meant to call but I put enough in to raise in order to throw off my opponent trick.” Little made a losing call which handed Lyons the chip lead in that event (at that time).

For Lyons part, he said it was a legit live misclick that led to Little’s elimination. So while Little took to Twitter to let out some aggression, Lyons played on to eventually bust out just shy of the final table in 11th place for roughly $7k.

CUT TO: Day 1B of the Shooting Star Main Event. Lyons, who was upgraded to being a bounty (as he’s a very well known player in the Bay Area and harmlessly arrogant enough to call himself “Best In The Bay”) finds himself, once again, seated with Little. But this time it’s Little that gets a little…

That’s right. Just two days later the same two players tangle again and again one goes busto. Little’s two pair beat Lyons’ two pair (ironic as Lyons is a featured pro for 2Pair Magazine) but this time Little collects the $2500 bounty on Lyons, to essentially make back his $2k buy-in from the prelim, and sends his new nemesis to the rail. Plus…there was another legit misclick (not by Little though).

Will there be a round 3? Lyons fired his 2nd bullet into Day 1b and sits with $129k in chips while Little enters day 2 with 100k. Good luck to both!

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Kyle Julius’ $200k “No Drinking” Prop Bet

One year stone cold sober - no buy out.

Everyone loves a good prop bet. Also, many of you love a good, stiff drink. Well, poker pro Kyle Julius is well known for loving both and so that’s why he was given such a good price to take a “No Alcohol” bet.

From the looks of it, Julius has to abstain from drinking until March 9 2015 or he’ll be hurling up $200k as payment. Also, it looks like there’s no backing out like when Phil Ivey pushed his no drinking bet during the holidays. This bet comes without a buyout attached….

It seems like the toughest challenge will for Kyle will be the summer in Las Vegas during the WSOP as his friends worry about how he’ll make it through the grind completely sober.

For his last drink, he went out in style…

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Team PokerStars Pro Leo Margets To Compete On Spanish Survivor

Poker pro heads to Honduras to try and out-everything everyone.

Spanish Team PokerStars Pro Leo Margets will appear in the upcoming airing of the Spanish version of the popular TV show Survivor (called Supervivientes). Set to air this coming March 17 in Spain, the Barcelona born Margets will be trying to thrive on the beaches and in the wilderness of Honduras against 8 other Spainish TV personalities and psuedo-celebs.

Of course, Margets is not the first professional poker player to take a stab at being the sole Survivor as Jean-Robert Bellande was perhaps the first and most famous poker player to participate in the US version of the show. Additionally, just recently, Los Angeles cash game pro Garrett Adelstein went busto in a big way early in the current season.

Poker players are thought to have some distinct advantage due to the reasoning and logic that comes with playing poker at a very high level – this theory has yet to be proven true. Leo though has other training that may help her on her journey, according to her PokerStars bio, in addition to her poker skills she’s also a long distance marathon runner.

Leo’s biggest score, and the one that boosted her confidence into becoming a pro poker player, was her 27th place finish in the 2009 World Series of Poker where she took home $352,832.

Habla espanol? Read: Leo Margets a poker ambassador Survivors over at

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey Not Bothered By Bilzerian “Broke” Rumor

Ivey gets candid about early days, craps habit.

Who knew Phil Ivey had such a nice smile?! In part two of Ivey’s interview with Bluff Magazine video producer Thomas Keeling, he opens up about the “No Home Jerome” rumors of his early fake ID Atlantic City days, how he got started playing poker and his propensity to shoot high-stakes craps.

Keeling then throws out the recent rumor, started by Dan Bilzerian, that Ivey was in fact broke. When asked if he knew Dan, Ivey admits he doesn’t know Blitz very well and cannot recall having ever played a hand of poker with him. Do the rumors started by Beardo bother him? Ivey’s wide grin is pretty telling as he seemingly has no problem with people saying whatever they want when they don’t know his financial situations.

Charming and entertaining, this is an interview you’d never have gotten out of Ivey even 3 years ago.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

WPT’s Tony Dunst Breaks Down Selbst’s Poker, Fashion Choices

Watch this promo clip from the Raw Deal.

Last week, the World Poker Tour released their preview of Episode 2 of the Borgata Poker Open. Now, they’ve taken the same clip and let Tony Dunst get his hands on it. The Raw Deal host breaks down the action street by street from inside the mind of protagonist Vanessa Selbst. As you’ll see, Dunst likes just about everything Selbst chooses to do in this clip…well, except for what she wears to the final table.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Matt Marafioti — “I still trying to think of how I can sue these guys”

Marafioti on Twitter, being afraid to fly and his internet bad boy image.

Bay 101 Shooting Star Tournament Director Matt Savage locked down a few minutes with the always compelling poker bad boy Matt Marafioti to talk tournaments and his tough guy image. Marafioti, in an exceptionally good mood, praises the healthy crowd and the tournament at Bay 101 while recounting how his past few outings ended up in typical bad beat fashion.

Savage delves into hot button issues for Marafioti as well as the one time Twitter superstar explains why he let his one-time vibrant account go dormant and how he’d like to find a way to sue video creator SrslySirius for his hilarious 'I’m Such An Awesome Guy’ music vid.

As for his narcissistic image, Matt explains that it was all part of reality show that didn’t get greenlit years ago and so, while that’s not really him, he sometimes plays up to it in the poker world. So take a minute or two and catch up with Marafioti.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

2Pair Magazine Hangs The “Help Wanted” Sign

Expanding coverage in all directions.

The new kid on the block in the poker magazine game, 2Pair Magazine, is looking to spread their wings and expand. Recently the magazine (with their successful fledgling tour) put out the call, looking for help in a number of areas including writing, photography and tournament coverage.

We’re always looking to help people who want in on the poker industry, so if you hoped to dip a toe or two in the poker scribe biz, reach out to the gang at 2Pair via email and see if you can’t get a gig: [email protected]

The 2Pair Poker Tour recently announced details of their latest stop at the Sacramento Poker Open with tour ambassador, ESPN’s, Lon McEachern. The series takes place from April 17-27 with over 100k in total guaranteed prizes over 9 events.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Former WSOP November Niner Filippo Candio Calls It Quits, Retiring From Poker

Candio sick of unproven tax evasion accusations.

2010 World Series of Poker November Niner, Filippo Candio, announced on his Facebook Page this week that he is stepping away from the game of poker. According to PokerPT, Candio made the announcement after a televised news story aired that accused Candio of tax evasion.

As it turns out, that story was based on a news item from 2 years ago, which was proven not to be true. Despite the fact that the news outlet retracted their story, Candio apparently has had enough and announced that after the PPT Campione D’Italia later this month, he’s done with poker.

In a rough translation, done with Google translate, Candio indicates that he’s been looking to leave poker for some time. He had once thought that poker would bring him a little bit of glory and serenity but now he is reading on various blogs and websites that he committed tax evasion. With that the PPT, after his birthday, is probably the last he will play.

“Thank you and goodbye.”

A look back at Candio’s unparalleled rungood in the 2010 WSOP:


published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey Has Too Much Time On His Hands

Ivey aspires for new training site to make poker a better game.

Phil Ivey is becoming a personable promotion machine. As high stakes poker games dry up for the man considered to be the biggest poker talent on the planet, Ivey looks to spend more time on various business ventures. Number one on his list – Ivey Poker. In this video Ivey sits down to a one-on-one interview with Bluff Magazine's Thomas Keeling to talk all things training videos.

With the Big Game moving from Vegas to Macau (and a spot in London) Ivey finds himself with some time on his hands and he plans to use that to show people how to get better at poker. Ivey talks about wanting to make videos for all the games, which he hopes brings more people into a variety of disciplines thus expanding the game. As for making the games tougher by exposing his secrets – he says bring it on. Tougher is better. Poker is a tough game of adjustments and while he may be giving up a little to his opponents, he knows he’ll be able to out maneuver them in the long run.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Moorman, Charania and More Weigh In on Weirdness

PokerNews looks for more ways to entertain.

This PokerNews video from earlier in the year has finally surfaced where hostesses Kristy Arnett and Sarah Grant take a page from the boys of Workaholics and try to “get weird.”

In the inaugural segment the ladies as poker pros a total non sequitur to the poker conversation at hand to see what goes on in the mind of the famous faces of the felt. In this edition, the girls contemplate packing on the pounds and how much it would cost to keep a large amount of extra weight on for a full year.

Recent LAPC Champion Chris Moorman, Team PokerStars Online Pro Mickey Petersen, Team Ivey’s Dan Smith, World Poker Tour Champion Moshin Charania and Triple Crown winner Jake Cody all weigh in with how much it would take.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Poker Coach Jared Tendler Goes Mental Over Shot Clocks

Poker mindset coach Jared Tendler teams up with his “Mental Game Of Poker” partner Barry Carter over at Pokerstrategy to delve into the what a proposed WPT would do to the player psyche and to see if it’s a good idea for the game.

During last week’s Los Angeles Poker Classic, the WPT polled the participating players about a potential shot clock to help curb tanking and speed up the game.

With an overwhelming number of players being in favor of it, what would it mean to the game if the WPT actually acts on it? Tendler and Carter seem to feel that it would be yet another distinct advantage for the pros as those who have played the most hands have likely seen all the situations before.

Read: The mental game case for shot clock tournaments

The gut reacts very quickly in a poker hand and the players who have more experience reading their gut, and going with it, can quickly make high level decisions. This is very similar to an athletic reaction, that you’d see during a football match or a basketball game, where athletes make incredible maneuvers to beat a defender. They immediately know what’s right and go with it .

But in terms of it being good for the game, Carter and Tendler seem to agree that it’s a good fit for the really pro heavy events, like WPT Main Events.

In all seriousness, shot clocks have been introduced to many other sports and I can’t think of an example where it hasn’t been for the good of the game. If it makes poker more entertaining then whatever hit some players take, it is a worthy trade off. Ultimately, the good players, live or online, will learn to adapt and figure how to succeed no matter what the format.

What do you think? Can you handle the pressure of a shot clock?

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Sam Trickett At The Peak Of Everest Poker

Everest Poker lands one of the premiere unsigned pros.

Everest Poker made a splash today by announcing the signing of UK poker pro Sam Trickett to be their new brand ambassador. Easily considered one of biggest unsigned names in poker, Trickett boasts a resume that includes two Aussie Million High Roller titles, a Partouche Poker Tour title and, of course, nearly $20 million in career earning thanks to his 2nd place finish in the inaugural World Series of Poker Big One for One Drop in 2012.

Now, the big time Brit is headed to Team Everest Poker and they have a big time promotion to go along with that. Trickett and Everest are giving away the chance to win 10% of Trickett’s 2014 WSOP campaign (minus the 2014 One Drop) which, according to Des Duffy in the Everest Poker marketing department, is expected to be between 20-30 events.

“I’m very excited to be joining Everest Poker and I’m looking forward to interacting with our players online and at Everest Poker Live events, where I’ll be playing and coaching. Everest is a great poker brand and I will be doing everything I can to make it one of the most recognized in the world.” Trickett said in the press release. “It’ll make the Vegas grind a lot easier to know I have a lot of players following my progress this year. I’ve promised my mum a bracelet and will be doing my very best to score big for everyone who’ll own a share in me.”

For info on how to get some of Sam’s cash, those who are eligible, head over to Everest for all the details.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Chris “Jesus” Ferguson To Resurrect His Poker Career

Poker sleuth Diamond Flush predicts a Jesus sighting in 2014.

Shamed into hiding for his part in the Full Tilt/Black Friday debacle, one-time poker hero Chris “Jesus” Ferguson may be preparing to make a return to poker as soon as the 2014 World Series of Poker. According to a number of posts on Two Plus Two by the highly credible, well-respected poker journalist Diamond Flush, with the repayment of players now complete Ferguson (and Lederer) may assume that all is forgiven.

With regards to Ferguson and Howard Lederer's state of mind, Diamond Flush writes:

He has plenty of money and does lead a non-ostentatious lifestyle, but I assure you he has plans to return to poker when ppl get repaid, as does Howard. They assume all is forgiven and some regulars in the LV circuit think thats true. Many otoh, do not.

Also, when posed with the theory that Ferguson has so much money from his Full Tilt disbursements that he’s unlikely to be seen in public again, Diamond Flush replied with what sounds like a statement of fact.

He expects to be back, especially for WSOP.

Diamond Flush, who is well known for being a part of the original Subject:Poker crew continues to cover the toughest of topics in the poker industry including Black Friday and the legal ramifications of its major players.

The thread, “Any news on Chris 'Jesus’ Ferguson” covers a great many topics related to Ferguson, Lederer, Full Tilt and Black Friday, making the whole thing (mostly the 2nd page on) a pretty interesting read – highlighted by the insights of Diamond Flush – check it out.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Mike “Tmex” McDonald Sees The Writing On The Wall

Is this a sign from the poker gods?

High-rolling poker beast and part-time Justin Bieber clone, Mike “Timex” McDonald was contemplating making a last minute trip to the Bay Area to jump in the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star, but he was was looking for a sign if he should go or not.

That sign came in the form of this anti-gambling campaign message plastered on a double door at the campus where he’s taking a business 101 course. Clearly, McDonald, who has already won over $4 million in 2014 alone, is not the target demographic.

So, did he heed the advice of the door and “stop the chase?”

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Bad Beat Diaries — Some Hands Play Themselves

One man's dream is another man's nightmare.

While California has been exempt from the winter freeze of the Polar Vortex, things got pretty chilly on this hand from one of the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star 1k Main Event satellites.

Our resident bad beat, big hand reporter Pat Lyons, who bubbled the final table of the 2k prelim last night, snapped a quick shot of this gross cooler where someone’s 1k shot at getting into the Main Event (which starts today at 11:00am PST) is shattered.

Flopped full house runs into flopped quads…and the rest is history.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Jeff Gross Will Not Be Intimated By Alpha8

Promo vid talks befriending Phelps and final tables.

Everyone knows that Jeff Gross is one high stakes professional poker player that likes to get down whenever possible. That being said, the TeamU member understands that to be considered a top tier pro, it’s not good enough to simply be good pals with Olympic Gold Medalist Michael Phelps, you also have to do the work.

In this short promo video from World Poker Tour Alpha8's Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood Florida stop, Gross finds time to drink a coconut while chatting with host Lynn Gilmartin about what it means to be an Alpha8 participant and how he knew he could compete with the biggest names in the game.

Of course, while things can be serious at the table here they show off the incredible accommodations that Gross finds himself in as well as what is on the massage menu. Must be nice…

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink

Joseph Cheong Gets His Game Face On

Reppin' his brand and chilling out before the Bay 101 Shooting Star.

Joseph Cheong sure knows how to relax before a big tournament. When he’s not hanging out with lion cubs, he’s back in hotel getting a facial so he can look pretty for the cameras. The World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event begins later today and while Cheong is not a bounty himself, he’ll be looking to have his photo taken with as he busts one of the 50 Superstars who are.

At the start of play on Monday, you can watch the action from the floor of the Bay 101 Casino via their live stream.

published 10 years, 1 month ago • by permalink