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published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

World Series of Poker Main Event Mania Gets Underway

Day 1A gets everyone up in arms.

The Main Event is finally here. The first of three starting days for the $10,000,000 first place kicked off a few minutes ago. Here’s some of the excitement going around the Rio as the first hands are being dealt.

Last year’s runner-up, Jay Farber is in today’s field.

Our guy, Phil Laak, showed up looking out of this world.

The feature table features both returning WSOP Champ Ryan Riess AND 2012 Main Event Champ Greg Merson

Tony Dunst is in his seat early.

Jason Mercier is in the house and looking to run this stack up.

Check out a couple solid write-ups of the beginning of the Main Event

Read: 2014 WSOP Main Event Starts Today [WickedChops Poker]

Read: $10 million is waiting [ESPN]

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

World Poker Tour Crashes The WSOP Party

Over 430 runners show up to Day 1A of the WPT 500

While all eyes will be on the Main Event of the World Series of Poker at the Rio for the next 10 days, the World Poker Tour has decided to throw their own poker party, right down the street.

Day 1A of the WPT 500, the $540 buy-in tournament with a $1M guaranteed prize pool, kicked off at the Aria on July 4th and a more-than-respectable 433 runners hopped into the field.

The tournament, which features 5 (yes, FIVE) Day 1’s allows for runners to re-enter on subsequent Day 1’s. On each starting day 5% of the field will advance (10% of the field gets paid) to the one-and-only Day 2, which takes place on July 9th.

Yesterday’s field was packed with notables and many well-known players made their way into the 22 survivors of the very first flight. Former November Niner Scott Montgomery, David Tuthill, Team Ivey Pro Mike Leah, Andrew Badecker and Mr. WPT himself Mike Sexton all soared through to the finals.

Day 1B will likely be a truer test for the WPT 500 as the WSOP’s Main Event will officially be in full effect. Will the WPT 500 gains steam as people bust the WSOP Main Event or will runners decline as the WSOP starting days pick up in numbers. For partypoker and the WPT not to have any overlay, they’ll need 2,000 people to cycle through the five starting days.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Casting Call – Poker Players Wanted For WSOP Main Event Final Table

Take a look at a partial cast list for likely inclusion on ESPN this November.

Poker’s premiere summer camp experience is steamrolling to the finish line and World Series of Poker organizers are hoping for a Main Event grand finale for the ages. With a $10,000,000 guaranteed first place payout, you can be sure that the drama will be cranked all the way up as players fight through 10 days of non-stop flops, turns and rivers to determine who will sit just behind Jamie Gold in terms of Main Event paychecks.

While there will be hundreds of public and private storylines created, there’s a few archetypes that have emerged since 2003 as tried and true characters in poker’s Main Stage play. Now it’s just a matter of who will step into those roles. Starting tomorrow the WSOP and ESPN are casting for…

“The Premiere Professional”

Ivey. Grinder. J.C. It seems that in recent years a bone fide name brand professional with credentials to boot has risen to the top of the Main Event mayhem to be the guy that ESPN can forge an entire campaign around. Maybe he’s been there before, like Carlos Mortensen on the bubble last year or maybe he’s a longtime grinder like Allen Cunningham. Maybe this year, it will be a she, like Vanessa Selbst. Who is ready to be the big name pro to play their way into the top 18 this year? Siever? Seidel? Bonomo? We can’t wait to find out.

“The B-list pro”

OK, this pro is known, like, just an “ok” amount though. Not a name with a lot of sizzle behind it, but they have a sizable backstory to help bring some hype to the coverage when the names become largely unrecognizable. Examples of this would be Lee Watkinson or Mark Newhouse. It’s the pro who has made just enough of a name for themselves to be listed in a PokerNews chip count, but not (yet) enough to have garnered a major title (although Newhouse had won a WPT, he still fits the part).

“The Old Guy”

Some guys just haven’t heard that poker is a young person’s game and it seems like each year we have one of those pesky fogeys creep their way into the top of the chip counts. Of course, we say this with love as we’re all going to be old at some point and besides, just take one look at the Seniors Event and you’ll know that oldies are a huge part of the poker market. Steve Gee, “Bob” Bounahra, Steven Begleiter or even Raymond Rahme come to mind when we’re talking about respecting your elders when it comes to the Main Event.

“The Redemption Story”

Who has a hard luck story to tell in the midst of this tournament? We’re looking for you. Either a tale of overcoming hardship or a battle with inner-demons, everyone loves a great comeback. A strong personality or phenomenal story is needed to fill this role and some of our most memorable final tablists have fit this category. Chino Rheem and eventual champ Greg Merson have provided these tales in recent years, and in Merson’s case, it led to one of the more inspiring storylines of any final table in memory.

“Lady Luck”

Yep, it’s sexist to some degree – especially in a year when Vanessa Selbst made history by winning her 3rd open event bracelet – but with ladies likely to be about 5% of the field in the Main Event the “Last Woman Standing” is going to have a spotlight put on them. If history holds true, there’s some extra benefits to earning this role. Jackie Glazier, Maria Ho, Tiffany Michelle, Gaelle Baumann, Leo Margets...hell Annie Duke...good things have traditionally come to the holder of this title and with there being a concerted effort to get more of the smarter sex involved in the game, there’s a good chance 2014 will bear the same for whoever earns it.

“The Everyman

The role that started it all. Moneymaker. Just a guy, like you and me, who came to Las Vegas with a dream and a ticket to the Main in his pocket. Maybe he’s a guy from the woods like Darvin Moon, or a trucker like Dennis Phillips but whoever he is, he should come from a humble background and probably have a beard. Or a name like Moneymaker. Is there a dude out there with the last name Cashmachine? Let’s let him win, ok everyone?

Finally, the most important role…

“Internet Kid Who Nobody Knows, Yet “Everybody” Knows He’s An Online Sicko”

This is probably the most important role of all as, pretty much, the last 5 of the last 6 Main Event Champs have come from this pool of personas. Eastgate, Cada, Duhamel, Heinz and Merson all had deep-seeded online roots and those that knew of them, knew they were more than capable of winning it all. But it’s not just Champions that fill this role, the bulk of the players at final tables as of late have been littered with these young guns. While these aren’t necessarily the most popular of picks to win the Main Event, they are the most realistic.

So, if you would like to take your shot at being in the World Series of Poker’s production of “The Final Table” bring your headshot, resume and $10,000 to the Rio in Las Vegas starting this Saturday for your 10 day audition.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

All In Magazine Celebrates One Year Back On The Scene

It’s been just over a year since the relaunch of All In Magazine and, for them, what a year it has been. With big-time feature interviews with Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu and, of course Dan Bilzerian, the team at All In has brought high-end video production back to the poker world.

In this, their own in-house celebration of the year gone by, you can watch clips of all the exciting things you may have missed as they’ve sent their camera crew all over the United States throughout the year from charity events to movie premieres to the inside the homes of some of poker’s superstars. It seems that the corporate stylings of All In are determined to recapture any magic they may have lost and then some.

Bonus: Speaking of high quality video from All In, here’s their take on the One Drop.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

PokerStars Bonus Cut – The Money Changes Max Altergott

Monte Carlo SHR Champ now a citizen of the world.

In 2013, young German poker pro Max Altergott took home the massive $2,289,970 first place prize of the EPT Monte Carlo Super High Roller and it’s safe to say the money changed him. Perhaps, for the better.

No longer taking poker as a personal, ego driven challenge, Max has used the money to provide himself with the luxury of traveling the world, finding his home to be wherever his heart is. Having climbed to the top of the poker mountain, Max now looks at poker a little different – as more of a competitive recreation, something that is fun, not necessarily as challenging as it once was.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Dutch Boyd Publicly Apologizes To Mason Malmuth, Pays $60K To 2p2

Mason victoriously plasters Boyd's letter on forums for all to see.

Is this the end of the Dutch Boyd/ Two Plus Two saga? It sure looks like it as earlier this week 2p2 head honcho Mason Malmuth opened a thread on his own forums entitled “Dutch Boyd Apology Letter* which looks to be a concession made by Dutch, a 2014 World Series of Poker bracelet winner, to put the who cyber-squatting debacle behind him.

Read: Dutch Boyd Apology Letter

In the letter Dutch basically concedes all major points, apologies for the name calling and says he should have known better.

Dear Mason:
I’m writing to apologize, both to Two Plus Two and to you personally, for my actions leading to your company’s lawsuit against me.

Although I was initially defensive and angry, I’ve come to realize that my actions were wrong and unjustified. Regardless of my motives, it was improper for me to register the domain name, which belongs to your company.

It was wrong to try to profit by using your trademark on a hosting site, and to later make the domain available for sale. It was also wrong for me to challenge the merits of the lawsuit, or to tell the public that you had “no reason to sue me” after you obtained the

I realize now that it makes no difference how much money I might have made from this domain, or when you ultimately obtained it: cybersquatting is stealing, and the act of registration itself led to a legitimate lawsuit against me.

My anger and frustration led to some negative and disparaging comments about you and Two Plus Two during and after the case, for which I also apologize. Contrary to what I may have said (or encouraged others to say), I don’t believe you are a “bully,” and I don’t believe this case was simply about a “money grab.” Neither I nor anyone else should have insulted you personally about this matter.

I now realize that this case was simply about protecting the Two Plus Two brand and trademark, which is extremely valuable to the company and to you.

Put simply, I am sorry for my actions, and I have learned a lesson. I will not register any Two Plus Two related domain names or take any harmful action against Two Plus Two in the future. I will also not insult or disparage you or your company in the future. I hope that we can put this entire matter behind us and remain cordial to each other moving forward.

Russell “Dutch” Boyd

In addition to the public letter of apology, Mason himself confirmed that he/they did receive a payment of $60,000 from Dutch.

Read: Dutch Boyd (and Mason Malmuth) Get Paid As Boyd Wins 3rd Bracelet

Perhaps this is the perfect time for Boyd to put the entire ordeal behind him as while this drama was stirring, he was not-so-quietly having a massive 2014 World Series of Poker racking up 6 cashes for a total of $326,324 and, of course, his bracelet victory in Event #33 for $288K+.

It looks as if Dutch just keeps his mouth shut this will be the end of it. You see, the original judgement covers the costs through the decision in 2012. Boyd’s appeal incurred addition charges, which Mason could technically go after (we think) and so, for now, they’ve decided not to go after Dutch for these charges, instead just wrapping those fees up in this $60K payment.

We don’t think that Daniel is very close to writing a public letter of apology anytime soon.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Rast, Massey, Failla & More Daydream Of $10M Payday

WSOP asks the pros what they would do with Main Event money.

The World Series of Poker is dreaming of a massive Main Event in 2014 and with a $10,000,000 guaranteed first place prize, they might just get it. Throughout the series, they’ve been asking a variety of pros to dream about what they would do with the cash should they be fortunate enough to win the World Championship. Each of the quick videos gives a variety of options as well as a glimpse into the pro themselves.

Brian Rast

JC Tran

Will “The Thrill” Failla

Russ Salzer

Mohsin Charania

The Main Event is one day away…

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Daniel to Daniel – Make A Choice, Don’t Compromise Moral Code For Money

Negreanu reaches out to Colman in Full Contact Poker blog post.

No doubt you know two things about 24-year old poker professional Daniel Colman. He is the 2014 Big One For One Drop Champion and after his victory he set off the poker industry by not granting a victory interview to the ESPN TV crew or World Series of Poker media partner PokerNews.

If that is all news to you, read this first: Daniel “mrgr33n13” Colman – Wizard Wins One Drop, Declines To Do Media, Sets off Media Firestorm

Colman’s decision divided the poker industry as to whether he snubbed his peers to a certain degree by exercising his right to remain silent or if he missed an opportunity to get his message, whatever that may be, across to the poker playing public. It actually spawned some really good reading like these posts from WickedChops Poker, Pokerjunkie and poker pro Tristan Wade.

But perhaps now the loudest voice chiming in on the actions of Daniel Colman is from the man he defeated heads-up to win the tournament, Daniel Negreanu. Negreanu took to his blog over at Full Contact Poker to voice his opinion and offer a public message to Colman which perhaps puts to rest the fervor over the 2014 One Drop Champ.

Read: My Two Cents On Daniel Colman 'Controversy’

I have read his statement, and he makes some valid points in it. I think (and he acknowledges this) that it’s difficult to take the position he does, and actually still profit from the game, and the weaker players he exploits. I’m assuming when he plays heads up sit n’ gos online, he doesn’t inform his opponent that he is a professional and they are likely to lose the match.

Daniel provides a thoughtful, candid reply to Colman sympathizing with his published statement but providing the insight that while, yes, people are likely to lose playing poker it’s not necessarily inherently evil just because people enjoy trying. Negreanu does acknowledges Colman’s concern about the ugly underside of poker and the gaming industry.

I have seen the other side of poker. I don’t deny the dangers for those with addictive personalities, those that put their well being in jeopardy because they overextend themselves. Having said that, studies show that typically people with gambling addictions are drawn to more instant gratification games like slot machines rather than a game of wits like poker.

But for Negreanu, he’s not really writing this to debate the good-and-evil of poker, it’s more to reach out to Colman person to person, player to player.

Whatever it is you choose to do in your life, make sure INTEGRITY is at the core of it. If you are genuinely having an issue with the morality of playing poker for a living, make a choice. Don’t compromise your own moral code for money. If you truly believe in your heart that what you are doing hurts people, and you don’t want to hurt people, you need to make a choice.

We fully realize that by this point you should have stopped reading this post and have clicked over to Daniel’s blog and if, by chance, you haven’t yet – we think you’ll find it to be a compelling read so feel free to do that now.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Poker Pros And Playa Del Carmen – The Non-Stop Party of Poker’s Elite Expats

Play poker, go diving, go clubbing, go drinking. Repeat.

Meet the poker elite of Playa Del Carmen.

In the new article on Business Insider, go inside the fraternity of poker bros who are grinding all day and hooking up every night in the Mexican hotbed of Playa Del Carmen. From cashing in on SCOOP to scooping up Norwegian coeds, these 20somethings have found a poker sanctuary outside of the United States’ post-Black Friday crackdown.

Word quickly spread around the expat poker community. Playa was cheaper than Canada, safer and more convenient than Costa Rica, and more fun than Rosarito on the west coast of Mexico. There’s fishing, snorkeling, scuba diving, golf, paintball, beach volleyball, soccer, and other activities within easy access. Living on $1,000 a month isn’t difficult, and $2,000 is more than enough.

In a piece that pulls back the party curtain on the roughly 150 or so young grinders we follow Seth & Nick Davies and Gus Voelzel as they chase poker greatness from outside of borders of home.

“We’re not playboy gangster helicopter guys, but we have freedom. There are kids who I think could run Fortune 500 companies and there are kids who I wouldn’t want watching my dog.” Players of all sorts are welcome in Playa.

Read: LIVING THE DREAM: Meet The American Poker Exiles Who Gamble All Day And Party All Night In Playa Del Carmen

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari’s One Drop Bustout Pain Was Worse Than Heartbreak

He may have lost the battle, but he vows to win the war.

To hear Ultimate Poker ambassador Antonio Esfandiari tell it, his bustout from the Big One For One Drop was worse than being jilted by a lover. With a deep emotional attachment to the One Drop tournament and charity, Esfandiari is just now coming to terms with his non-result in the massive $1M buy-in mega-ment.

Even though a back-to-back victory in the charity event was always a remote possibility, Esfandiari felt it was such a real possibility that in the wake of his loss he’s feeling the most emotional poker pain he’s ever felt. Never one to sulk publicly though, Antonio is back at the Rio, talking with Bluff Magazine's Thomas Keeling and pulling it together so he can move on.

Additionally, Esfandiari gives his thoughts on the 2014 One Drop champion Daniel Colman and his lack of cooperation with the media in the aftermath of his $15M+ victory. While Colman has the right to do whatever he’d like, that ambassador role that Esfandiari had (and has) is something he quite enjoys and he thinks perhaps Colman owes a little something to those of his peers that battled on the felt with.

Read: Daniel “mrgr33n13” Colman – Wizard Wins One Drop, Declines To Do Media, Sets off Media Firestorm

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Supernova Alex Wice Reveals His High Volume Online Poker Secrets

Tricks that took Wice to the top of the online poker profession.

In 2013 Alex “AWice” Wice became the player to achieve Supernova status on PokerStars in a startling 40 hours. Last week, the one-time mass-multitabling online pro wrote a blog post to help his fellow poker players save time and energy when playing so many tables it would make a normal human’s head spin.

Read: New Techniques I Discovered That Doubled My Poker Potential … And Income

First up – Optimize your Environment.

Reducing delay is principally important. If you have 16 seconds for your turn and you can save just 1 second, you already increased your hourly by 7%. If you plan on playing say, 2 million hands a year, and you save even 0.1 seconds per hand total, you end up saving 200k seconds — 55.5 hours. But you can usually save many times that.

Next – Encoding standard situations.

Many subgames of poker come up frequently, and if you plan to play often, you should know them by heart. This breaks down into a few steps: identifying common situations, solving them offline, and encoding the solution in a compressible chunk for reference later.

Finally – Stack and Tile.

This is the motherlode guys. This secret was so valuable to my success, I guarded it at all costs. This is one of the main reasons why I never showed a picture of my setup during play. Stack and Tile, a little known program, is the most useful program ever for a volume based professional player in any form of poker. Alone, it probably doubled my income and it certainly doubled the rate at which I could play poker.

If you are online wizard looking to take your game to Wice or Nanonoko levels, check out Alex’s methods and see if you can apply them to your own setup and game..

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Unleash The Hounds! Danielle and Dan Battle Attack Dogs In “Me vs. U”

"This is going to hurt."

It’s another episode of the Ultimate Poker competition show where two of their poker pros, Dan O’ Brien and Danielle Andersen compete head to head where the winner gets to humiliate the loser.

Today, the pair travel to an attack dog training site where they are forced to flee for their hides as a barking, drooling, foaming at the mouth puppy chases them down, drags them to the ground and terrorizes them to the finish line.

To the winner, bragging rights. To the loser, a face full of peanut butter.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Daniel Negreanu Spreads The Wealth, Making Money For His Fans

Partial One Drop proceeds get paid out to Twitter followers.

Premiere poker agent Brian Balsbaugh, likely with the permission of his client Daniel Negreanu let it be known that Kid Poker sold off 13% of his $1,000,000 Big One For One Drop buy-in on the internets.

The minimum investment of $5K returned approximately 8:1 bringing back $41,440 out of the nearly $8.3M runner-up payday he received this week. The new All-Time Money List leader reportedly had 44% of himself in the tournament which means that before taxes, Negreanu adds $3,646,720 and change to his bankroll while paying out $4,641,281 to investors in total. (Yep, that’s simple math .)

Bonus: In case you haven’t seen it, here’s Negreanu’s post tournament interview with Sarah Grant from PokerNews.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Borgata Poker Goes Deep, Kicks Off Deepstacks Challenge

Tons of chips to help outmaneuver the enemy.

The boys over at Borgata Poker have another sick series to entice the East Coast grinders, as well as the entire Garden State. The Deepstacks Challenge get underway on Monday where players get what they really crave, tons of chips and guaranteed prize pools for an affordable buy-in.

This year though, the Borgata throws in a twist. Either you get a read on your opponent in person, with your clothes on, or participate in one of the online Deepstacks and click buttons wearing whatever the hell you’d like.

From July 7-12, you put on your shoes and show up at the Borgata Hotel & Casino for some live tourney action. Deep play and guaranteed action every day of the week, leading to the massive 40,000 chip deep, $50,000 guarantee.

Then the series goes online over at Play an additional 8 events from the kitchen, the bedroom, hell…even the bathroom. Wherever you have internet (in New Jersey) you can take your shot at hefty guaranteed prizes for minimal buy-ins.

No account? Not a problem. BorgataPoker is incentivizing you with all sorts of worthwhile promotions like deposit bonuses, newbie freerolls and whatnot.

So if you are in New Jersey, go deep with Borgata starting this Monday!

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Antonio Esfandiari Gifts Jeff Gross “Man’s Man Status” On WPT Safari

The Alpha8 cast get hungry while on the road.

Antonio Esfandiari, Erik Seidel, Lynn Gilmartin and professional best friend Jeff Gross hit the high-stakes safari trail while on break from the high-rolling Alpha8 tournament in South Africa.

Their tour guide, Nico, stops the jeep to help the crew find something to eat but there’s no fast food this deep in the bush. Watch the poker pros squirm over tasting a real African delicacy – termites.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

WSOP Champion Jerry Yang – Humble And Happy To Be Back At The WSOP

Keeping focused, Yang grinds on.

Say what you will about 2007 World Series of Poker Champion Jerry “The Shadow” Yang (he gave himself that nickname) and his ambassadorship or world-champ-worthiness, on camera, he seems to be simply a happy, humble, hard-working guy.

Here Jerry catches up with Frank Op de Woerd from PokerNews to talk about his summer grind and how hard he’s working on his new business, Pocket 8’s Sushi and Grill (located in Merced, CA). Yang doesn’t appear to have any pretense about where is skill level is as he is grateful to be cashing when he does and would never think to participate in the stratosphere of those who participate in the One Drop.

While Yang is a good guy, he still hasn’t forgotten those backhanded comments from Salty Joe about his level of ambassadorship. Even so, he’s seemingly let some of the hostility go and simply is thankful for those that support him as he continues to try to support poker and make his way back to the final table.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Phil Hellmuth Finds Himself Whining Too Much

Luckily he has the ability to always have the best hand.

Phil Hellmuth continues his conversation with Bluff Magazine's Thomas Keeling and talks about how it’s really no big deal for the 13-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner to play a $1K instead of the $1M One Drop tournament because after all – a bracelet is a bracelet.

You see, Phil feels that no one really cares what you received your bracelet for just the number of bracelets you have and so he treats absolutely every tournament the same. Well, he would like to win the $50K Poker Players Championship most of all perhaps, but he’s not going to spend time whining about that now.

published 9 years, 10 months ago • by permalink

Daniel “mrgr33n13” Colman – Wizard Wins One Drop, Declines To Do Media, Sets off Media Firestorm

What do you do just after winning $15,000,000+ in the largest tournament of the year? Whatever you want. Or don’t want.

In the case of young internet whizkid Daniel Colman, who bested Daniel “Kid Poker” Negreanu heads-up to become the 2014 One Drop Champion, he just decided that he had no interest in fielding questions from PokerNews's Sarah Grant, ESPN or anyone else for that matter and 5 minutes after his victory – the kid was outtie.

This led to a couple media outlets not being very happy with Colman’s post win demeanor. Especially, perhaps, the Las Vegas Sun which called Colman a 'petulant child’ and 'self-absorbed.’

Channeling a petulant child, Colman had to be persuaded to pose with the winnings and bracelet most poker players spend their whole lives fighting toward. Caesars Entertainment executives and ESPN officials got their way with that one, but Colman would spare no more satisfaction.

PokerNews’ Rich Ryan took Colman to task in his Five Thoughts column for not using the platform to simply express himself, as it’s understood that Colman refused all media because despite his success in poker, he thinks that “poker is evil, and if you play you are likely to lose.”

You had an opportunity to say whatever you needed to when the entire poker world was watching you, but instead you chose to remain mute and pose in front of a mountain of money with a sour face.

Not nearly everyone was angry with Colman for doing what he pleased by keeping silent. He received support from all corners of the poker industry, like this from poker pro Michael “Timex” McDonald.

Well, as the conversation spilled over on Twitter about Colman’s right or ability not to say anything after such a huge score, whether he owes something to poker media, whether Colman is just shy, if he’s a conflicted poker player, socially awkward, aloof or just plain not interested in poker’s media bullshit – he took to Two Plus Two to, reluctantly, have his final say.

I really don’t owe anyone an explanation but Ill give one…

First off, I don’t owe poker a single thing. I’ve been fortunate enough to benefit financially from this game, but I have played it long enough to see the ugly side of this world. It is not a game where the pros are always happy and living a fulfilling life. To have a job where you are at the mercy of variance can be insanely stressful and can lead to a lot of unhealthy habits. I would never in a million years recommend for someone to try and make it as a poker pro.

It is also not a game where the amateurs are always happy to be losing their money for the sake of entertainment. The losers lose way more money at this game then winners are winning. A lot of this is money they cant afford to lose. This is fine of course because if someone is dumb enough to gamble with money they cant afford to lose, that’s their problem. Im not really buying that though. In a perfect world, markets are based on informed consumers making rational transactions. In reality sadly that’s not the case, markets are based on advertising trying to play on peoples impulses and targeting their weaknesses in order for them to make irrational decisions. I get it if someone wants to go and play poker on their own free will, but I don’t agree with gambling being advertised just like I don’t agree with cigarettes and alcohol being advertised.

It bothers me that people care so much about poker’s well being. As poker is a game that has such a net negative effect on the people playing it. Both financially and emotionally.

As for promoting myself, I feel that individual achievements should rarely be celebrated. I am not going to take part in it for others and I wouldn’t want it for myself. If you wonder why our society is so infatuated by individuals and their success, and being a baller, it is not that way for no reason. It is their because it serves a clear purpose. If you get people to look up to someone and adhere to the “gain wealth, forget all but self” motto, then you can get them to ignore the social contract which is very good for power systems. Also it serves as a means of distraction to get people to not pay attention to the things that do matter.

These are just my personal views. And yes, I realize I am conflicted. I capitalize off this game that targets peoples weaknesses. I do enjoy it, I love the strategy part of it, but I do see it as a very dark game.

With that, poker media has what it needs from Colman. No, it’s not another video where they ask him “how it feels” and he says “awesome” or “surreal”, where they ask him what he plans on doing with the money and he dodges the fact that it’s rumored that Haralabos Voulgaris and Olivier Busquet had large pieces of him and he talks about buying something nice for his mum.

No, we have an often unspoken sentiment that many in the industry feel, that poker is indeed, at times, a dark game. One where we need to “reel in the casual players” in order for the sharks to get fed. It’s a game that, if you are not careful and play responsibly, can bring life downswings that aren’t communicated as someone holds bricks of cash they won in under 72 hours.

This is Dan Colman, like him or not, your 2014 Big One For One Drop champion.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Chris Moneymaker Doesn’t Follow or Play Much Poker Anymore

It's a late arrival to the WSOP for it's signature champ.

PokerNews's Frank Op de Woerd tracks down the elusive man behind the Moneymaker effect, Chris Moneymaker to find out just where the hell he’s been all series long.

Turns out, Chris just ain’t that into it.

It’s family first for Chris and if he’s being honest, despite being a long time Team PokerStars Pro, his late arrival to the World Series of Poker is because he just doesn’t play poker that much anymore. In fact, he doesn’t even really follow it.

Despite that and a previous engagement at the Hollywood Poker Open, Moneymaker has finally arrived to get warmed up for the Main Event.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Bad Beat Diaries – The Bad Beat For One Drop

$25K Satty winner Connor Drinan gets flushed out.

Sometimes a somewhat standard bad beat takes on epic proportions depending on the spot that said beat comes in. For Connor Drinan, winner of the $25K satellite to the Big One For One Drop, his bad beat of a lifetime came on the biggest stage of the year – the $1M buy-in One Drop.

According to PokerNews, Connor and One Drop competitor Cary Katz got their stacks in the middle, both turning AA face up. Katz found himself freerolling Connor after the flop brought two hearts and, well, you know the rest…

Drinan busts the One Drop holding AA and Katz holds on to take 8th place for a $1,306,667 payday.

Read: The Best Of The Bad Beat Diaries

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

“Downtown” Chad Brown Passes Away

Poker mainstay remembered as an amazing man of integrity.

Chad Brown, who was recently honored by the World Series of Poker with an honorary bracelet for both his work and demeanor in the game of poker, has passed away, ending his hard-fought battle with a rare form of cancer at age 52.

“We all have a choice when it comes to how we want to feel about what’s going on in our lives. If you want to feel like a victim, that’s your choice. I choose not to. I don’t feel like a victim. I feel very blessed with the life that I’ve had, regardless of what happens.” – Chad Brown

An outpouring of heartfelt emotion and condolences flooded social media from the poker community with the news of the poker ambassador’s passing, including from his close friend and ex-wife Vanessa Russo as well as many of the pro players that knew him.

Chad, an avid player of baseball as well as poker, was recently featured in the touching mini-documentary “Faded Glory 2” where his battle with cancer was chronicled.

To read more about the life of “Downtown” Chad Brown, check out any and all of the links below:

PokerStars Blog: Chad Brown: 1961-2014

pokerfuse: Chad Brown Loses Battle With Cancer

Bluff Magazine: Chad Brown, Poker Pro, Dies at 52

PokerNews: Chad Brown Passes Away At 52

PocketFives: Chad Brown Passes Away at 52

Hard-Boiled Poker: Chad Brown 1961-2014

More PokerStars: 'Sitting’ With Chad Brown and Friends Remember A Fierce, Fair Fighter

All-In Magazine: In Memoriam – Chad Brown

F5poker would like to extend our sincere condolences to all of Chad Brown’s friends and family for their loss.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Jean-Robert Bellande Arrested In Las Vegas

Handcuffed and hauled off.

Professional poker player Jean-Robert Bellande was reportedly pulled over and arrested on the Las Vegas strip, in front of the Bellagio, early this morning.

According to Las Vegas Metropolitan Police records, Bellande was nabbed for “expired license plates” and “unlawful acts financial responsibility” – which we believe to be related to lack of proof of insurance. JRB is ridin’ dirty!!

Let’s hope that Bellande isn’t as broke as he claims as his bail was set at $15,700 – requiring him to pony up 10% or $1570 in cold hard cash.

The incident looks to involve his now famous “JRBROKE” Bentley which was allegedly won and/or paid for in the Dan Bilzerian high-stakes home game. Reports that after Bellande was hauled off, his Bentley was put on a flatbed and towed away as well.

The whole ordeal came to light on Two Plus Two when poster “FireworKKing” (aka Tim Bennett), who witnessed the arrest, had this to say say about it.

Okok , all details . Hot hooker looking girl was railing his arrest before getting to leave and I guess there was another before I got there that left and they were both in car. Weird part is cop car in front of him 2 cop cars behind him then a cab behind cop car being questioned and taking pictures of his cab and behind that another car being questioned and pictures also.then they went thru his trunk and pulled out some case box put it on hood taking pictures of it and pointing in it while questioning him and sealing up stuff with zip lock bags out of it.

Check out the entire thread on 2p2.

If this is any more than JRB getting busted for forgetting to go to the DMV, we’ll make sure to let you know.

UPDATE: Victory for Bellande – charges dropped!

After the 16 hr nightmare that is Clark County Detention Cntr, it’s so good to be back home in Paradise NV. Charges dropped obv. #brokerecovery

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Norwegian Elisabeth Hille Still Plays Poker “On the Side”

Despite $600k WSOP cash in 2012.

Elisabeth Hille nearly made history during the 2012 World Series of Poker Main Event by becoming the first woman in over a decade to final table the tournament. Nonetheless, the Norwegian placed 11th in the World Championship two years ago for $590,000.

One would think with such a bankroll boost that Hille would have gone on to play the game professionally. Not so, she says.

“Poker is still illegal to play back home… I much prefer live so I do take a couple of trips to London for weekends… but that’s pretty much it.”

The part-time poker player says she is still working as a waitress and going to school in between playing cards.

Asked whether she will play the Main Event this year, Hille confidently replied, “Of course. How can I not try?”

According to the Hendon Mob database, Hille is 17th on the all-time live tournament money list for Norway.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Big One for One Drop Dealer Andy Tillman

Relaxed atmosphere takes pressure off.

In a rare behind-the-scenes glimpse of how the WSOP $1 million Big One for One Drop is perceived from a dealer’s vantage point, Matt Tillman talks to reporter Frank Op de Woerd before his shift.

The affable dealer was asked whether there is more pressure placed on his colleagues due to the event’s massive entry fee and constant TV camera action. “There’s more pressure just to not make mistakes,” commented Tillman. However, he added that “due to how relaxed [the One Drop participants] are, it almost takes the pressure off of you.”

He went on to compare the casual yet focused table atmosphere of the charity event to that of a $20 or $30 MTT.

The WSOP One Drop employee obviously has a firm grasp on what it takes to professionally carry out his duties during important hands in the tournament. Tillman said that when a big hand is taking place, he focuses on the players to identify subtle “check” movements to ensure he doesn’t disrupt the flow of the action by missing a player’s intentions.

Tillman recalls the most memorable hand he saw Sunday night, which was between Dan “Jungleman” Cates and Doug Polk. Rattling off poker terms such as “tanked” and “3-barrel bluff,” the WSOP dealer sounded like a seasoned pro.

Unfortunately, Tillman “didn’t have the buyin” for the $1 million tournament. Perhaps he found himself in a similar situation to Phil Hellmuth—coming up Snake Eyes securing the remaining $130k required for taking a shot in the event.

Fortunately for Op de Woerd, Mr. Tillman didn’t threaten to walk away if his interviewer delved deeper into which potential backer couldn’t come up with the money in time.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Layne Flack Turns Around A Brutal WSOP With Deep Run

All-In Magazine follows their Team Pro to the cash cage.

All-In Magazine heads to the Rio to follow Team All-In Pro Layne “Back-to-Back” Flack in his final table run in World Series of Poker Event #39.

Flack, takes the All-In camera crew to the payout room where he rakes some cash to help him bounce back from a rough start to his WSOP.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Phil Hellmuth – One Drop Just “Wasn’t Meant To Be”

If he really cared, he'd have raised the cash sooner.

More information, now straight from the Poker Brat’s mouth, as to why he wasn’t able to squeak his way into the $1M buy-in Big One For One Drop.

A seemingly bummed Phil Hellmuth talks with Bluff Magazine about the timeline for raising cash to put him into the biggest tournament on the 2014 calendar. After naptime, he’d received no texts from investors and Hellmuth assumed he wasn’t going to be in the big show. But a late call from the WSOP brought hope as, apparently, there was an investor ready to put him in the seats. After that the money started streaming in and Hellmuth made his way to the Rio.

Read: Phil Hellmuth Short-Changed Out Of One Drop

In the end though, the money that put him over the top just wasn’t where it needed to be when it needed to be there and now Phil, who felt in shape to play, will have to wonder why he didn’t start raising the cash back in May.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Galfond, Trickett and Ike Talk About The Ups And Downs Of One Drop

It seems everyone has something to say about the biggest tourney of the year.

With all of the excitement over a handful of rich people (adnd pieced out pros) playing for big bucks in the Big One For One Drop currently going on at the World Series of Poker both Bluff Magazine and PokerNews are doing a great job getting as much on-camera real time reactions as they can. In the video above Phil Galfond explains how the chips are absolutely flying at his table while at the same time, the action is “somber” and “intense.”

Ike Haxton addresses a few questions from Thomas Keeling over at Bluff Magazine about whether cash games specialists or high-rolling tourney grinders have the edge in this pro stacked field.

Here Sam Trickett talks to Bluff Magazine about the rough start to his day and how he lost the chiplead. For same though, this is a case of “been here, done that” so he’s not worried.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Haralabos Voulgaris Thinks It’s Silly To Think One Drop Can Continue As Is

Last year's participant is this year's spectator.

Sports betting guru in basketball and one-time poker pro Haralabos (Haralabob) Voulgaris talks pretty candidly with PokerNews about why he thinks the Big One For One Drop $1M buy-in tournament didn’t sell out this year.

Rather than play himself, Haralabob just took a bunch of pieces of people in hopes to get a return on his investment, especially since some of the biggest fish in the tournament (the businessmen) were some of the first to bust. In fact, if Voulgaris were a betting man, and that’s all he is, he’d say the One Drop is a dog to continue in the future as most of the original “spots” in the tourney looked at it like a one-time favor to One Drop founder Guy Laliberté.

One guy who is still in the field is Erick Lindgren who Haralabos famously outed for owing him a ton of money from fantasy sports betting. It seems that debt is no longer a problem for Haralabos as he sold it “pennies on the dollar”, assuming he’d never get paid back.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Bad Beat Diaries – Getting Bounced From WSOP By The 1%

Hands like this don't come along everyday.


For every tale of victory at the World Series of Poker, there’s any number of bad beats. But lest you think all bad beats are equal check out this entry into the Bad Beat Diaries from the $1500 NLHE WSOP event.

On a flop of AJ9, three stacks get in in the middle. Ace Jack, losing to pocket 7s, which is behind the top flopped set of Aces.

If we did out math right, and there’s no saying we did, this run out has less a 1% chance of occurring and most players will never suffer a beat so bad in such a situation.

Good game.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Phil Hellmuth Short-Changed Out Of One Drop

Not enough cash to sit at the big boy tables.

Everyone anticipated that one of the late entrants to the 2014 Big One For One Drop would be that of 13-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner, Phil Hellmuth.

As the money “flowed in”, Hellmuth got himself mentally prepared to play for the big bucks.

But when push came to shove, Hellmuth’s finances just weren’t in order in order to get registered in time. Apparently, he arrived at the cage, ready to play, but the money he needed just wasn’t waiting for him. That means one of poker’s biggest stars will have to watch the action from the cheap seats, like the rest of us.

Do you think Phil just didn’t want to play? Was he scared?

If you want to read more on Hellmuth and the One Drop, check out this article and audio interview from Lee Davy over at Calvin Ayre: Why Phil Hellmuth Missed The One Drop

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Dan “Jungleman” Cates Thinks Not Selling One Drop Action Is “F***ing Insane”

Jungle just wants to win million.

So why would someone jump in the Big One for One Drop tournament at the World Series of Poker against a pretty tough field and an automatic rake of $111,111? Because that sick just wants to win millions of U.S. dollars.

Daniel “Jungleman” Cates talks with Bluff Magazine about his expectation against the field in the One Drop and how he just wants to win piles and piles of money.

Even though Cates knows he’s a favorite, to balance out the variance he’s sold off some of his action. In fact, the thinks it would be “fucking insane” not to. But while all the business folk probably have all of themselves, there’s only one pro poker player who is likely to have all of himself….guess who that is.

Bonus: Doug “WCGRider” Polk has some beef with Jungleman and rumor is that Jungle called Polk a “douchebag” while at the table during the One Drop. Here Polk talks with PokerNews's Sarah Grant about how these high-stakes heads up specialists actually get along.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Trickett, Ivey Sit Atop The One Drop

All eyes are on the massive excess of the One Drop charity tournament.

From the famous Amazon Room at the 2014 World Series of Poker, 42 professional poker players and big-time businessmen took their seats at the second ever $1M buy-in Big One For One Drop Tournament.

Just like the name, everything about Event #57 is big. The chipstacks, the money at stake and the superstars at every table all vying for the $15M+ first place prize. Sure, the tournament didn’t sell out as expected and, yea, it’s not the forecasted biggest first place prize in history, but that did not stop spectators from lining up 5 people deep just to get a glimpse of the nosebleed action.

Everest Poker lead ambassador Sam Trickett holds the chiplead headed into Day 2, but all eyes are on the man just two spots behind him – the always dangerous 10-time bracelet winner Phil Ivey.

Defending and returning champ Antonio Esfandiari jumped up into 5th position behind Daniel Colman before the night was through, exercising patience until he could double through Dan Smith.

Other marquee name like Noah Schwartz, Rick Salomon, “Doc” Sands, Phil Galfond and Daniel Negreanu round out the top 10.

Even the list of people who blew through their chips is a who’s who of poker: Jason Mercier, “King” Dan Smith, Brian Rast and Philipp Gruissem were just a few of the 11 who have to deal with losing an absolutely enormous amount of money in a single day.

Both of the $25K One Drop satellite winners, Connor Drinan and Erick Lindgren, survived the day getting to hold on to that surreal feeling of binking entry into a $1M tourney for a fraction of the price. Here, Drinan talks with PokerNews about his strategy for taking down the One Drop.

While the majority of players are focused on winning the tournament, One Drop founder and tournament participant Guy Laliberte is just happy that the high-rolling tournament has reaped rewards for the charity, hopefully passing along much needed clean water to those in need.

Here Guy talks with Bluff Magazine's Thomas Keeling about how the event is a “great achievement” despite not selling out this year.

All the action of Day 2 gets underway with 10 minutes left in level 9 at 1pm PST.

Read More: The World Series of Poker $1 Million Buy-In Tournament: The Big One for One Drop

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Phil Ivey Is A Nice Guy, Great Guy, Good Guy

Devilfish recalls his first interaction with a young Phil Ivey.

PokerNews tracks down David “Devilfish” Ulliott to ask him about some of the old time stories of now 10-time WSOP bracelet winner, Phil Ivey. Devil can’t say enough what a good guy Phil is.

Really, Devilfish just can’t stop saying it.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

Somerville, Smith, Marchese and Mercier Run It Up To Over A Million

Bellagio $100K turbo tournament awards four million dollar prizes.

Yesterday, the Bellagio decided to jack up the massive buy-in of their monthly high-roller tournament to a whopping $100K buy-in. The idea of being able to take home over $1M in less than 24 hours was obviously an appealing one as 87 runners hopped into the turbo event.

According to Card Player, when play wrapped up at nearly 16 hours later a 4-way deal was struck as Ultimate Poker Pro Jason Somerville, boat owner Jason Mercier, former Ultimate Poker Pro Tom Marchese and crowned winner, King Dan Smith chopped up the loot that added over a milly to each of their bankrolls.

Here’s the numbers on the 4-way chop:

Dan Smith – $2,044,766
Jason Mercier- $1,622,181
Thomas Marchese – $1,465,451
Jason Somerville – $1,327,352

Of course, these weren’t the only guys happy on this night at the high-speed, high-stakes turbo tournament paid 11 places including Doug “WCGRider” Polk, “Doc” Sands and even Gabe “Mr. Kotter” Kaplan

For all the payouts, check out this released Google Doc.

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink

“Downtown” Chad Brown Awarded Honorary World Series of Poker Bracelet

The integrity, honor and friendship of Chad Brown was recognized today by WSOP officials.

In a special bracelet ceremony at the World Series of Poker, Team PokerStars Pro and popular poker pro Chad Brown was officially awarded an honorary WSOP bracelet for his contributions to the game of poker.

Brown, who is battling what is deemed to be a case of terminal cancer, may have had his health recently taken a turn for the worse leading WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel to break the news to the attentive audience that it seems likely that Brown will not have the opportunity to play poker in a tournament setting again.

Earlier in the series, friend of Chad’s, actor and poker player James Woods had mentioned the idea of an honorary bracelet, with Chad in mind. It seems like the organizers of the WSOP got on board with the touching idea.

Watch: Chad Brown Featured In Mini-Documentary

Despite a little confusion just after the ceremony, news travelled that Chad had received the news of the ceremony with pride and even a hi-five.

Our very best wishes for Chad and his family.

Read: Chad Brown Continues To Battle Head Up

For more on Chad Brown and his bravery in the face of his battle, check out this nice article over at PokerNews: Chad Brown: Playing The Hand He’s Dealt

published 9 years, 11 months ago • by permalink