Posts Tagged ‘Big One for One Drop’

Antonio Esfandiari to Serve as Face of Ultimate Poker

by , Apr 18, 2013 | 10:00 am

Antonio  Esfandiari receives a really big check, with a really big number Photo: "WhoJedi" NewnumStation Casinos-owned Ultimate Poker, which has yet to launch its pay-to-play website in Nevada, has a brand ambassador.

The company, which has been licensed by state gaming regulators but is waiting for approval of its technology by testing laboratories, announced Tuesday that it has signed poker champion Antonio Esfandiari to promote the website.

Esfandiari has made a name for himself behind the microphone as a commentator for ESPN’s coverage of the World Series of Poker and at the tables for his victories on the World Poker Tour.

He made his biggest splash last summer when he won a record poker jackpot of $18.3 million in capturing the World Series of Poker’s $1 million buy-in “Big One for One Drop” at the Rio.



by , Feb 18, 2013 | 10:00 am

Men "The Master' Nguyen Photo: WhoJedi / LAPC

Men “The Master’ Nguyen
Photo: WhoJedi / LAPC

Today’s Boxscore

Men Nguyen $21,255 – 2013 LAPC $125 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy
Jon Seaman $10,080 – 2013 LAPC 2-7 Triple Draw/No Limit SD
Ryan Wince $29,010 – 2013 LAPC NLHE Doublestack

The big news over the last few days, unless you are Jean-Paul Pasqualini or Cedric Rossi, was the World Series of Poker finally releasing their summer schedule. Some players were getting ansy, now they are all settled down and able to make their plans to invade Las Vegas for the 2013 WSOP, whether they are a small ball newbie or an “every event” grinder.

The series will feature 62 bracelet events along with the standard non-stop non-bracelet side tournaments and their crazy draw. The WSOP always likes to throw something new at their customers (2009 Stimulus Event anyone?) and this year around is The Millionaire Maker on the opening weekend. This tournament will be a $1,500 No Limit Hold’em with two starting flights on the same day and players can re-enter 1B if eliminated in 1A. The big twist is the guaranteed 1st place prize money of $1,000,000 to the winner. Guarantee should be in quotes since the payout structure will be adjusted to make this work, not money added to the standard structure.

Last year’s Big One for One Drop was so successful they will have two smaller versions this summer. The $111,111 One Drop High Roller and $1,111 Little One for One Drop which will feature unlimited re-entries through 4 levels. There is also some pretty decent buzz around for an event which won’t even award a bracelet. The WSOP will run a trial $5,000 Open Face Chinese poker tournament during the Main Event. This is the newest, latest, greatest big thing for the youngns.

Perhaps the biggest change this year is to the Ladies Championship, where now it’s technically a $10,000 event but women will receive a hugely discounted price of $1,000. It’s probably the best way to severely discourage men from entering the tournament as their EV is ridiculous. Poker legend Linda Johnson expects that any man in the event would need to make the final table just to have a positive ROI.

I am interested to see how they handle any issues which arise with post- or pre-operative transgender players trying to enter the tournament. If they’ve made a comment about it, I haven’t seen it.

Back later this week with a more detailed 2013 WSOP schedule rundown later.

Tweet of the Day – Uber Limit guro Matt Matros with his take on the 2013 WSOP schedule.

Don’t get cheated on the Open-Face Chinese app – Huge news for those playing on the popular Open-Face Chinese Poker app and wagering on the side (as opposed to through the app itself, for now). There is obviously a HUGE security hole, so buyer beware. I’m surprised this hasn’t made a bigger splash but maybe most people already know who they’re playing against and trust them. Barry Greenstein is not one of those people.

Global Poker Index “suspends” two players from the system – GPI savior and guru Alex Dreyfus announced last week they were “suspending” Jean-Paul Pasqualini and Cedric Rossi after some very shady behavior at the 2009 Partouche Poker Tour final table. Seemingly well earned but does this restart the “Standards and Conduct Committee” discussion? Please say no.

Newsjacking and Poker Marketing – Speaking of the GPI, Barry Carter with a look at the trend of “newsjacking” to market a poker product. Not that uncommon or remotely new.

Tech Industry Sets Its Sights on Gambling – Another mainstream media article, this time by the NY Times discussing how online gaming companies are positioning themselves for onling gambling.

WSOP Reconnect

by , Jul 29, 2012 | 6:00 am

I got a message on Facebook smack in the middle of the WSOP — June 23rd — from someone I had been buddies with since grade school, but had lost touch with since moving away from Michigan almost 10 years ago. The message started off with him, Dave, saying congrats on my poker career and that he liked reading this blog, which was cool to hear because I usually have no idea who reads this thing, mom and dad excluded. (Hi Mom and Dad!) Dave went on to say sorry for emailing out of the blue but he was really hoping for a bit of advice.

His father had really taken to poker over the past decade, he explained, often playing with friends and family as well as in charity card rooms around their home in Michigan. He wrote that his dad “has long since dreamed” of making the trek cross country and playing in a WSOP event, and that with a rare vacation timed perfectly at the end of the month, he was wondering whether it would be a good idea or silly pursuit. He phrased it in a way that might make you think of a lot of fans of the game dreaming of taking their shot in Vegas, only better, because he made sure to say that win or lose, he thought it would make for a great experience for his dad, who was last in Las Vegas 40 years ago.


Kickstart My Heart-Draw

by , Jul 6, 2012 | 1:48 pm

Longtime Pokeratizens might remember the days when we were all about the poker comic strips. Back in ’06, my favorite was +EV (by Bobby Crosby) — the story of an online grinder trying to balance his professional poker pursuits with family life. Hot wife, cute little daughter named Scarlet … and I think they had a cat.

I rediscovered +EV shortly after Black Friday, and saw the comic had grown even more entertaining. Now Bobby C wants to turn the best-of into a book … hard and soft. He’s almost there with his kickstarter campaign, too — having already raised more than half of the $5k he seeks. (You get a copy of the book with a donation, so check it out!)


by , Jul 4, 2012 | 4:17 pm

Antonio Esfandiari wins The Big One for One Drop

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Neil Willerson $737,248 – Event #53 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em
Will Jaffe $500,075 – Event #54 $1,000 No Limit Hold’em
Antonio Esfandiari $18,346,673 – $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop

It was a big day at the WSOP with huge crowds in the Mothership and on the rail to watch Antonio Esfandiari capture the biggest prize payout in poker history when he won the $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop event. The loincloth guys were back in the room banging their drums and even some non-Elizabeth Berkley Showgirls came in time for the live launch on ESPN.

It took a while for the action to take off but picked up steam after Richard Yong was knocked out in 8th place. Guy Laliberté, brainchild behind the Big One, received one of the loudest ovations from the gathered crowd when he was eliminated in 5th place. The biggest cheer went up for The Magician when he defeated former chip leader Sam Trickett headsup for the bracelet, a $350,000 watch, and a huge pile of (mostly fake) cash worth $18,346,673. His friends hoisted him up in the air, he jumped up on the feature table, and then hugged it out with money.

I’ll reserve my opinion on throwing a $1,000,000 buyin tournament for later, but it was an exciting day around the room for the players, fans, and media. With just a few more days until the Main Event, the WSOP is hitting it’s stride at the right time.

I imagine this will generate a bunch of interest in Esfandiari’s Insta Poker Secrets to Winning Hand-Pack and the Instapoker mobile app. Some pretty good timing in addition to a dump truck full of money backing up to his house.

Link Dump

Tweet of the Day – Idiot

Einhorn Set to Donate Millions to Charity After BIG ONE – If there was anyone worth cheering for during the $1,000,000 tournament, it was David Einhorn who stated before the event he would donate any money won to charity.

Full Tilt’s Ray Bitar in FBI custody – Vin Narayanan at Casino City Times has a more detailed rundown of all things Bitar. I wonder when I can start ignoring my Full Tilt NDA.

Off the Felt With Shaun the Dealer – Shaun (the Dealer) Harris is one of the more recognizable figures dealing at WSOP and has dealt some memorable hands in the past. PokerNews caught up with him for an interview.

Life as an Online MTT Pro by the Numbers (It’s Hard) – Yes, I realize it’s an old post but it began circulating again this week. NoahSD crunches some numbers and shows some math-porn to highlight the difficulties in grinding a large number of tournaments.

BLUFF Asks What’s the Best Poker Movie Ever Made? – Not very many surprises but there’s little doubt our Ms. Welman does not like Rounders.

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Up a Million down a Million …

by , Jul 3, 2012 | 5:57 pm

How confident is Michael Mizrachi in his poker playing skills?

Moments after becoming the first two-time winner of the World Series of Poker’s Players Championship event Thursday night, Mizrachi went to the tournament’s cashier’s cage at the Rio and transferred $1 million from his $1.45 million winnings to pay his entry in Sunday’s “Big One for One Drop” No- Limit Hold’em event. It also helped that Mizrachi, 31, had secured some $900,000 in financial commitments from backers willing to wager that he could win the special event’s potential top prize of more than $18 million.

“I was already thinking about buying into the million dollar event a week ago,” Mizrachi said shortly after defeating Chris Klodnicki in heads-up play at the $50,000 buy-in Players Championship. “As a poker player, it’s something you want to compete in. I’m sure everybody wants a piece of me now. We’re sold-out.”

Mizrachi is no longer considered the heir apparent as poker’s next superstar.

He has arrived.



by , Jul 2, 2012 | 3:55 pm

Vanessa Selbst wins the 10-Game Mix 6-Handed Event

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Pete Vilandos $952,694 – Event #50 $5,000 No Limit Hold’em
Yen Dang $170,587 – Event #51 $1,000 Ladies Championship
Vanessa Selbst $244,259 – Event #52 $2,500 10-Game Mix 6-Handed

48 insanely rich (or insanely backed) poker players gathered on the stage yesterday for all the pomp and circumstance required for a $1,000,000 tournament. Group photos, individual player introductions, weird looking dudes in loincloth, and a really big ass drum Click image above for a shot of the scene during the group shot, courtesy my trusty iPhone Pano app. The number of people lined up along the rail was impressive but most of them dispersed once they realized watching live poker at the start of an event is pretty boring.

Phil Hellmuth slipped into the field at the last minute by “winning” the MGM VIP satellite Saturday evening. Rumors are circulating he made a deal with the final 8 players where he won the seat in exchange for a piece of his action. Gus Hansen also earned his way into the tournament but in the more traditional sense of winning. He made a heads up deal with Shaun Deeb where Hansen would get the seat while Deeb would get a cool million and listed as an alternate.

Interesting twist to the Deeb situation was when he tried to cash out his satellite winnings at the cage on Sunday. Some poor Rio employee told Deeb he could only cash out in tournament lammers, meaning he would have to rid himself of two thousand $500 tournament buyin chips before the Main Event when they would become useless. Thankfully saner heads prevailed and he successfully cashed out. See link dump below for the money shot.


Downside to most of the attention being directed at the Amazon Room three ring circus was the overshadowing of Vanessa Selbst winning her second WSOP bracelet. What should have been a grand celebration of the feat was pushed to the tiny feature table in the Pavilion while Selbst destroyed her final table. Two WSOP bracelet, over $5,000,000 in career earnings, and one of the top players in the world. She deserved more attention for the accomplishment.

As Matt Savage commented on Twitter, “Sat next to @VanessaSelbst in the 10K HORSE last year and she admitted not knowing some games. Now she is 10 Game Champion. #Legend #Boss“.


In other news, Full Tilt Poker’s Ray Bitar surrendered to US authorities today.

Link Dump

Feds Arrest Full Tilt CEO Ray Bitar – St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland, and now the DOJ has finally pulled Ray Bitar from his spider hole in Dublin. He sent an email to remaining employees saying he “returned to the US to deal with civil and criminal case that are pending against me in New York.” And if it’s on 2+2, it must be true. Makes me wonder whether Isai Scheinberg is feeling a little squirmy today.

Tweet of the Day – They finally decided to pay Deeb properly. That’s a lot of cheddar and I hope I run into Shaun at the bar before he “Deebs” it off.

Secondary Tweet of the Day – Doyle telling it like it is. Selbst deserved better and at least people are noticing the lack of appreciation.

WSOP Photo By Numbers: Controversial $50k Hand – Remember the silly $50k Players Championship hand where three players were all-in but not really? BJ Nemeth has a nice recap of the action complete with photo for those who often type TL;DNR on forum posts.

BLUFF Challenge — Charania Vs. Harder – That’s enough with the serious news. Finishing up with a little fun time between Christian Harder and Mohsin Charania in a hockey shootout contest brought to you by the fine video folks at BLUFF.

Be sure to check out our new sponsors at Face Up Gaming. Legal, subscription-based online poker with plenty of great prizes including cash, WSOP seats, and poker trips. Sign up with Bonus Code pokerati.

Re: The Ultimate Who’s Who of Poker

by , Jul 1, 2012 | 8:03 pm

We’ve gotta move on from all this talk of Black Friday, I know … it was nearly a year and a half ago, and we’ll be hearing about its cases moving forward in various capacities probably for another 2+ years.n But if the million-dollar buy-in tournament without certain people does indeed kick off a new era in poker — a hypothesis I’m currently formulating from the mothership — then consider this a farewell to economic powerhouses in the industry who suddenly aren’t, as you can tell by their absence.

The question’s in the subhed … Who would probably be playing in a million-dollar buy-in tournament (who currently is not) were this tournament being held in 2010? I’ll start off with whom I’d put on my list … we’re gonna presume the cap wouldn’t be at 48 either … 64 maybe, or 72 or even 96, but we can start there — on assumption without fact that the WSOP woulda made this thing a little bigger had they counted on the likes of:

Howard Lederer
Andy Bloch
Chris Ferguson
Full Tilt Qualifier and/or PokerStars Qualifier
Tony G
Doyle Brunson
Scott Tom (?)


One Drop Investor Edition: Volume Two

by , | 5:42 pm

The million dollar One Drop event has attracted its fair share of professional poker players. But it has also attracted some notable professionals from the investment world. In our One Drop Investor Edition: Volume One, we profiled David Einhorn. In Volume Two, we profile two more investors — with strong poker credentials.

Dan Shak after winning the 2010 Aussie Millions High-Roller event (picture via PokerNews)

Dan Shak
Investment Style: Go Big or Go Home

Dan Shak’s hedge fund SHK Asset Management doesn’t play small ball. According to the Wall Street Journal, at one point Shak owned gold futures contracts valued at $850 million or the equivalent to South Africa’s entire gold production for a year.

But in January 2011, the market turned on a dime, and Shak was forced to liquidate his position for a $7 million loss. Although lately, Shak has made the news for reasons other than investing and poker.

As Dan noted recently, Shak is now suing his ex-wife Beth over her million dollar shoe collection. Since he had no trouble coughing up the $1 million buy-in for One Drop, I suspect Shak’s lawsuit has more to do with publicizing Beth’s new shoe venture than getting a piece of her Christian Louboutins.

Of all the investors taking the One Drop field, Shak clearly has the most WSOP experience. He’s cashed 15 times in WSOP events, five of them occurring in this year’s series. He also took out Phil Ivey heads-up to win the 2010 High Roller event at the Aussie Millions.

Bob Bright during the 2006 WSOP $2000 NLHE event

Bob Bright
Investment Style: Small Ball

Day traders are the grinders of the investment world. They don’t swing for the fences. Instead, they try to reduce day-to-day market risk with trading techniques that let them advance just one base at a time. Pushing this baseball metaphor, Bob Bright is a day trading coach and manager.

Bright Trading has more than 40 locations where day traders are coached and mentored in proprietary risk reducing techniques. In the solitary world of trading, Bright Trading offers them a supportive community as they navigate their game of inches.

Bright Trading and Bob Bright are based in Las Vegas. And Bob Bright has always loved poker. His earliest cashes date back to 1990, when he cashed in both low ball and razz at the Hall of Fame Poker Classic. His biggest score was a third place finish in the 2006 WSOP $2,000 no limit event.

More Bright poker trivia: In 2008, Bright allowed professional poker player Brandon Adams to trade at Bright in exchange for poker coaching.  As this 2+2 thread details, Adams dropped a hefty bankroll on some speculative trades. Hopefully Bright got more out of the poker lessons.

The One Drop Investor Edition: Volume One

by , | 5:17 pm

The skill set required for poker and investing are similar. Success at either requires an ability to minimize losses, maximize gains and manage a bankroll. Trading firms and hedge funds often recruit from the professional poker ranks, as this LA Times article, featuring Chris Fargis, explains.

So it should be no surprise that a number of the players in this year’s WSOP million dollar buy-in One Drop Tournament hail from the investment world. Two of the most notable investors that may(?) play in this year’s One Drop are Andy Beal and David Einhorn.

2006 picture of Andy Beal at the Wynn (taken by Amy Calistri)

Andy Beal
Investment Style: Buy Low, Sell High

Dallas Banker Andy Beal was one of the first to sign up for the million dollar charity event. Although a recent post by Gary Wise suggests that Beal could be a no show.

Beal made his first fortune investing in multi-family residential properties, bought for a song at HUD auctions. Beal Bank made another fortune buying up distressed debt in the wake of the S&L crisis. In 2009, Beal moved up to #52 from #321 on the Forbes list of the 400 Richest Americans. He made roughly $4 billion buying up toxic assets after the financial meltdown.|

Beal is no stranger to the poker world. In 2001, Beal took on some of the world’s best poker players in a series of heads-up limit hold’em matches chronicled in Michael Craig’s book, “The Professor, The Banker and the Suicide King.” He reprised those matches in 2006, covered in this Bluff Magazine article.

Beal is a patient investor who always knows how to invest 1000 dollars to turn it into more. But he likes his poker like he likes his cars (Beal owns a number of race cars). He finds nine-handed play tedious. And he likes to push the stakes up into scared money territory. If Beal opts out of One Drop at the last minute, as Gary Wise reports, I blame the slow action of tournament play.

Einhorn at the 2006 WSOP

David Einhorn
Investment Style: Sell High, Buy Low

According to this Bloomberg article, the hedge fund manager David Einhorn is planning to ante up for One Drop.  The manager of Greenlight Capital has made a name for himself by shorting stocks — betting that their price will fall. In 2007, he shorted the investment bank Lehman Brothers. The 150-year old financial services company went bankrupt in September 2008. Lately, Einhorn is raking it in on his Green Mountain Coffee Roaster short.

Einhorn finished 18th in the 2006 WSOP Championship, donating his $600K+ to the Michael J. Fox Foundation. When it comes to poker charity events, Einhorn’s recent track record may be hard to beat. In May, he won the 7th annual Hillel Texas Hold’em Tournament and in March he won the 5th annual Michael J. Fox Foundation Poker Tournament. If you plan on playing against Einhorn, he discusses  his playing style here.

The Ultimate Who’s Who of Poker

by , | 4:10 pm

Here’s the cut-and-pasteable list everybody cares about — who’s playing, and where on earth their money could’ve come from. Is it racist of me to automatically be scared of the Russian businessman without even Googling him? And is it racist of the WSOP to refer to anyone as just an “Asian Businessman”? I’m guessing not really when both words are technically accurate and reveal the only things that really matter to a guy like Black American Professional Poker Gambler Phil Ivey …

1. Bobby Baldwin — Chief Design and Construction Officer, MGM Resorts Intl. (Las Vegas, NV)
2. Frederic Banjout — CEO, Eden Shoes (Paris, France)
3. Bob Bright — CEO, Bright Trading, LLC (Las Vegas, NV)
4. Ilya Bulchev — Businessman (Moscow, Russia)
5. Roland De Wolfe — Professional Poker Player (London, England)
6. Tom Dwan — Professional Poker Player (Edison, NJ)
7. Jonathan Duhamel — Professional Poker Player (Montreal, QC, Canada)
8. David Einhorn — U.S. Hedge Fund Manager (Rye, New York)
9. Antonio Esfandiari — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
10. Phil Galfond — Professional Poker Player (Potomac, MD)
11. Bertrand Grospellier — Professional Poker Player (Paris France)
12. Philipp Gruissem — Professional Poker Player (Germany)
13. Giovanni Guarascio — Businessman (Montreal, Canada)
14. Phil Ivey — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
15. Eugene Katchalov — Professional Poker Player (New York, NY)
16. Cary Katz — CEO, College Loan Corporation (Las Vegas, NV)
17. Jens Kyllönen — Professional Poker Player (Finland)
18. Guy Laliberté — Founder, Cirque du Soleil (Montreal, QC, Canada)
19. Ben Lamb — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
20. Tom Marchese — Professional Poker Player (Parsippanny, NJ)
21. Jason Mercier — Professional Poker Player (Davie, FL)
22. Michael Mizrachi — Professional Poker Player (Miami, FL)
23. John Morgan — CEO, Winmark Corporation (Minneapolis, MN)
24. Daniel Negreanu — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
25. Paul Newey — Chairman, New Wave Ventures (Dorset, United Kingdom)
26. Chamath Palihapitiya — Venture Capitalist (Burlingame, CA)
27. Bill Perkins — Owner, Small Ventures (Private Equity), (Houston, TX)
28. Paul Phua — Asian Businessman (Miri, Malaysia)
29. Brian Rast — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
30. Vivek Rajkumar — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
31. Tobias Reinkemeier — Professional Poker Player (Brighton, Germany)
32. Andrew Robl — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
33. Phil Ruffin — Owner, Treasure Island Resort (Las Vegas, NV)
34. Rick Salomon — Film Producer (Los Angeles, CA)
35. Nick Schulman — Professional Poker Player (New York, NY)
36. Noah Schwartz — Professional Poker Player (Miami, FL)
37. Erik Seidel — Professional Poker Player (Las Vegas, NV)
38. Mike Sexton — Professional Poker Player/Commentator (Las Vegas, NV)
39. Dan Shak — Founder, SHK Asset Management (Philadelphia, PA)
40. Talal Shakerchi — European Hedge Fund Manager (Surrey, England)
41. Mikhail Smirnov — Businessman/Poker Player (Moscow, Russia)
42. Justin Smith — Professional Poker Player (Los Angeles, CA)
43. Brandon Steven — Businessman/Car Dealer Owner (Wichita, KS)
44. Sam Trickett — Professional Poker Player (East Retford, England)
45. Haralabos Voulgaris — Professional Sports Handicapper (Winnipeg, Canada), (Lotto seat)
46. Richard Yong — Asian Businessman (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
47. Gus Hansen — $25,300 Mega Satellite – June 30 at Rio — Professional Poker Player, Denmark
48. Phil Hellmuth — MGM Resorts International VIP winner — June 30, Palo Alto, CA

One Drop to the Rest of the World

by , | 3:04 pm

Before Black Friday, the poker world seemed to avoid the economic calamities faced by the rest of the world. I’m sure that made the ROW just love all those players seen on ESPN Full Tilt & PokerStars TV. Now, lest we be seen in the same way as the rest of the world when it comes to money, we have One Drop — that holy fugk big event that arguably changes multiple paradigms in the poker world moving forward.

Here’s Alexandra from the Wall Street Journal trying to explain the concept to people who have a hard time thinking of even a $1,500 buy-in as a small event:

Big One for One Drop Photo Gallery

by , | 2:27 pm

Cirque du Soleil drums pounding in the Rio Amazon room, a crowd of poker fans with phone cameras aloft, the WSOP’s first ever $1 million buy-in tournament started Sunday afternoon. Guy Laliberte’s One Drop charity, which helps provides safe drinking water worldwide, sponsored the event and had raised more than $5.8 million.

The 48-player tournament is a veritable who’s who of the poker world — Phil Ivey, Erik Seidel, Daniel Negreanu, Bobby Baldwin, Mike Sexton, Antonio Esfandiari, “Elky” Bertrand Grospellier, Jason Mercier, Phil Galfond, Gus Hanson, Roland De Wolfe, Haralabos Voulgaris, among others.

More than an hour into the tournament, however, fans were still awaiting a (grand?) entrance from 12-time bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth, known for his self-aggrandizing late arrivals in big tournaments.


by , Jun 30, 2012 | 6:35 pm

Greg Hobson

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Steven Loube $267,345 – Event #47 $1,500 PLO/8
Kenny Hsuing $165,205 – Event #48 $3,000 Limit Hold’em
Greg Hobson $256,691 – Event #49 $1,500 Ante Only NLHE

There were two new events introduced into the WSOP schedule and both drew a lot of attention even though their buyins are a universe apart. Wednesday was the start of the very first “Ante Only” tournament for a $1,500 buyin, an event where blinds do not exist all players build the pot via antes. After a dubious start when both the dealers and players were a little confused, the pace of play took off and never looked back.

The floorstaff expected fast early action with bigger than normal pots in the first levels. They were incorrect, however, when thinking action would slow down in later stages. This event was one of the few to finish Day 2 on schedule with their final table 9 and the final table lasted only 5 hours from start to finish. Greg Hobson outlasted Mike Sowers for his bracelet and $256,691.

The other nes event is only slightly bigger, as the Big One for One Drop is the $1,000,000 buyin event a lot of people have been looking forward to witnessing. The field is capped at 48 players and the WSOP released a statement saying 47 players had thrown down their buyin and the field will be complete after Saturday’s $25,000 satellite. Play kicks off at 1:11pm on Sunday and available to view online at

More info below.

Link Dump

Tweet of the Day – There’s a big gap between the people who can put this amount through the cage, and those who are working their 9-5 jobs.

Full House: $1 Million Hold ‘Em Ante – Even The Wall Street Journal has noticed the $1,000,000 event with an article about players and staking arrangements. Interesting part in the article was 12-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth saying he might not play (check next link).

Big One for One Drop Player List – Phil Hellmuth is one of the notable players missing from the list and will not be in the event. Other notables missing from the big buyin tournament are Patrik Antonius, Viktor Blom, and Gus Hansen. The complete list seems to be a nice range between professional poker players and stinking rich business men. Not a real shocker, both Hellmuth and Hansen found their way into the event via satellites Saturday evening.

Phil Ivey and Erik Seidel Highlight the ‘Table of Death’ – A lot of the rich businessmen were probably happy with their table draw when they saw Phil Ivey, Erik Seidel, Ben Lamb, Tom Marchese, Antonio Esfandiari, Nick Schulman, Vivek Rajkumar, and Brandon Steven are all sitting in one place with nary a soft, cushy real east mogul in sight.

BLUFF Asks Who Is Your Pick To Win the $1 Million One Drop Event?Video featuring BJ Nemeth, Dennis Phillips, and Kara Scott (going with the homer pick).

Be sure to check out our new sponsors at Face Up Gaming. Legal, subscription-based online poker with plenty of great prizes including cash, WSOP seats, and poker trips. Sign up with Bonus Code pokerati.


by , Jun 12, 2012 | 6:02 am

Today’s WSOP Boxscore

Matt Matros $454,835 – Event #16 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em 6-Max
Andy Frankenberger $455,899 – Event #17 $10,000 Pot Limit Hold’em
Phil Hellmuth $182,793 – Event #18 $2,500 Seven Card Razz
Clifford Goldkind $559,514 – Event #19 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em
Benjamin Scholl $206,760 – Event #20 $5,000 Limit Hold’em

Some days it’s tough to find interesting story lines at the WSOP, Sunday night was not one of those days as both Phil Hellmuth and Phil Ivey were playing final tables. Hellmuth was looking for his record stretching 12th bracelet and Ivey for his 9th. They both cruised through their tables and both ended up heads up for the bracelet, with the chip lead, at the exact same time.

But it was only Hellmuth who could finish the job as Ivey lost to 2nd time bracelet winner Andy Frankenberger. While Ivey’s family would walk away from the feature table with an unopened bottle of Dom Perignon, Hellmuth was being presented with his 12th WSOP bracelet by his son. Hellmuth was remarkably gracious after his victory and called it a night only after every interview was completed and every fan who wanted an autograph had one.

Link Dump

Tweet o’ the Day – From Brian Hastings, having to collect his Heads Up prize money. First world problems indeed.

Uncap the One Drop Field – Rich Ryan at PokerNews wrote an OpEd stating the WSOP should remove the 48 player cap on the $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop event later this summer to allow as many players to enter. Opinions vary but Tom Marchese wonders if the numbers are what WSOP promoted.

Isildur1 Hits the Cash Games – Viktor “Isildur1” Blom was the poster child for insane online cash games but not much of that has translated to WSOP success. He picked up his first 2012 WSOP cash this weekend but cash game players gotta play cash games. CardPlayer reports he’s been playing upcapped games as high as $500-$1,000 in the Rio Pavilion Room.

Ivey Bets Millions on WSOP Bracelet – PokerListings reported a rumor floating around about Phil Ivey betting millions more on bracelet bets. I guess he’ll have to wait for another day and another shot.

BLUFF Video Team– Tatjana Pasalic and food trucks. Nothing else really needs to be said.