Posts Tagged ‘Russians’

The Ultimate Who’s Who of Poker

by , Jul 1, 2012 | 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

Pokerati Tourney Winner’s/Bustout Interview

NLH/PLO schooling by Lev

by , Aug 20, 2010 | 9:32 am

Really quickly, before today’s poker news starts streaming in and the main event at Detox Poker gets underway … below is the video from the Pokerati tournament earlier this week. It lasted into the wee hours, not unlike this year’s WSOP Final-10-to-November-Nine … yeah, pretty much exactly the same thing.

Perhaps strangely perhaps not, I have little experience on either side of the bustout interview … but the ever-belletristic Marco from QuadJacks was on hand and presumably half-awake to discuss the finale of Detox Event #11, which saw Lev Serzhenko beat yours truly to claim the $5,184 first prize befitting the newest Pokerati (NLH/PLO) Champion.

Final hand, btw: No-Limit Hold’em, outchipped about 4:1 … I check-raise all-in when my Ace pairs the flop … Lev calls semi-quickly with open-ended straight and flush draws, and makes runner-runner trips FTW! (Dammit.)

Heads-up for the First Big Bracelet of 2010

Tao of Pokerati

by , Jun 2, 2010 | 12:51 pm

Wow, Benjo and Pauly had a long night, watching The Grinder duke it out heads-up with the Russian pot-limit Stud stud, Vladimir Schmelev. I wasn’t there, natch, but I’m pretty sure it was the age-old story of Eastern whale vs. Western degen.

Either way, that’s why I’m so happy to have Pauly and Benjo there to clue me in on how whatever they show on ESPN really shook down … as well as hear Benjo talk about “the Greender” even before he was “the brasslet wiener”.

Episode 9: Never-ending Night


Michalski is AWOL for one of the biggest nights of the year with the 50K Player’s Championship. Not to fear, Benjo returns with another cameo. During one of the breaks of the 50K, Benjo and Pauly discuss circumstances surrounding the first never-ending day of the WSOP.

EPT Moscow => EPT Kiev

RE: Russia Makes Poker a Crime

by , Jul 24, 2009 | 7:22 pm

As suspected, Russia’s recent decision to make poker a more-criminal offense really put a crimp in the EPT’s upcoming Moscow event. The makeshift solution … head to Ukraine. After all, this ain’t the USSR!

Official word from EPT parent PokerStars:

The European Poker Tour (EPT) is pleased to announce an
alternate venue for its August event, now scheduled to be held in Kiev, the largest city and capital of Ukraine, at the Kiev Sports Palace, from August 18-23, 2009. The “EPT Kiev Sports Poker Championship” is to be held under the regulation and authority of the Ukrainian Ministry of Youth, Family and Sport, and in partnership with the Ukrainian Poker Federation. This event is expected to be the largest poker tournament ever held in the Ukraine.

The Kiev event replaces the previously-scheduled 2009 Russian Open poker tournament due to be held at the Radisson SAS Slavyanskaya, Moscow from August 18-23, 2009. That event has been cancelled because our ability to run the event was placed in doubt due to the recent closure of all casinos in Russia.

Euro Poker Tour Ltd. sincerely apologises to all players who were intending to attend the Moscow event, but unfortunately these circumstances were beyond our control. Players are encouraged to consider attending the Ukrainian event instead, and to participate in the opening of the EPT’s sixth season.

PokerStars advises its players who qualified online for the Moscow event that their packages (including buy-in and hotel) will be converted to EPT Kiev packages; however they will also be eligible to take a credit for a future event, or receive the cash equivalent value as alternatives.

The buy-in for the “EPT Kiev Sports Poker Championship” Main Event will be 5,000 EUR (4,700 + 300).

Players should note that the Ukraine does not require visas for citizens of the European Union, United States or Canada (among many other countries) when travelling to Ukraine for less than 90 days. Players from other countries should check this webpage ( or with their local embassy for more information.

We appreciate the opportunity to bring the EPT to beautiful and historic Kiev, and look forward to exploring the sights, sounds and flavors of the rich Ukrainian culture.

Russia Makes Poker a Crime!?!

by , Jul 21, 2009 | 9:22 am

Big news out of the Russian Federation, as the global (and inevitable) poker shakedown continues …

According to this PokerListings article translated via Google, the Ministry of Sport, Tourism, and Youth Policy have revoked poker’s status as a sport — making it illegal to play except for in four designated gambling zones, one of which happens to be in Siberia.

Some 70 Russian poker clubs face a shutdown as a result of the non-sport designation, and it’s not yet clear what this will mean for the fate of EPT Moscow, the next European Poker Tour event, scheduled for August, other than that the Pokerstarzistan-spawned tourney tour would likely have to cough up some extra bucks for appropriate licensing to play — as that event has been planned to take place in a Radison hotel, as opposed to a casino.

Fuckin’ commies! Russians won the fourth highest amount of money for any nation at the 2009 WSOP, and the Ruskie Federation finished 6th in the world in terms of bracelets and final tables.

Updated Regional Standings: World Series Gets Worldy

Italy stripped of earlier bracelet

by , Jun 15, 2009 | 12:36 pm

Roland deWolfe, the most recent WSOP bracelet winner, representin’ the GBR Joe Elliot-style.

One of today’s bracelets goes to Sweden. Any chance Tomas Alenius will request the Finnish national anthem be played — you know, to make things right in Scandiland? Doubt it …

In addition to Alenius’ bracelet, the UK picked up two in recent days, and Canada one — making things start to look a bit more normal … it’s not all about the Russians this year. In fact, are they still here?

And though Europe has caught up with the two US powerhouses (Nevada and California), they actually lost a bracelet (and some other cashes), as we’ve corrected Jeff Lisandro’s results to show up on behalf of his new homeland, Australia. (This way this data is collected, player info comes from whatever’s attached to their Harrah’s Total Rewards card … so if they haven’t updated their info in, say, several years … the old address is what’s on record.)

Click here to view the complete Pokerati’s complete 2009 WSOP World Standings.

Lisandro’s defection from Italy to a land down under also altered the tertiary emerging market standings — with Asia-Pacific re-taking a slight lead over Latin America — despite Chile and Bolivia getting their first cashes of the year.

Texas has finally taken down a bracelet, btw.

And a player from Wasilla, Alaska, finished in the money — there’s a town we wouldn’t have taken note of in last year’s WSOP. It’s Canadian neighbors in the Yukon Territory also got on the board.

Hong Kong also made some money.

And though we don’t really track by cities, apparently Chicago is really good at sit-n-gos, as the Windy City sat three players at the final table in the $1,500 NLH-Shootout. Could just be variance, of course, but for now we’ll pretend it’s not.

RE: Latest WSOP World Standings

Euro odds

by , Jun 11, 2009 | 5:29 am

I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise when international players only send their best overseas. But here’s an interesting addendum to official WSOP worldly statistics:

When it comes to ratio of players to wins and cashes, Finland appears to be winning the international race. Russia is a close second. Consider that 14 players from Finland have registered for events played thus far. Six have cashed and one player won. Among Russians, 42 players have entered to date, and 16 have cashed, with one victory. Contrast this with the United States, which has produced 10,344 entries, with 1,691 cashes and 15 wins. This breaks down as follows:

* Six percent of the Finnish players at this WSOP have won a gold bracelet.
* 43 percent of the Finnish players at this WSOP have cashed.
* 2 percent of the Russian players have won gold bracelets, but 38 percent have cashed.
* By contrast, .001 percent of American players have won gold bracelets and 16 percent have cashed.

Latest WSOP World Standings (through 18 events)

by , Jun 10, 2009 | 4:10 pm

So wow, look at that California vs. Nevada battle … tight tight tight! And for real, where is the Poker Capitol of the World? So much taxable difference between Daniel Alaei and Daniel Negreanu.

California is the only region, btw, with someone to cash in every single event so far. Nevada players (mostly Las Vegans) have cashed in every tournament but one — the $1,500 7cs that Jeff Lisandro won (representing Italy).

“Europe” has cashed in every single event.

One of the biggest surprise shifts has taken place at the bottom of the table — could you theoretically have relegation in poker? — where the Latin Americans have come on strong to surpass the Asia-Pacifickers in bringing home the most skrilla. Most of this comes on the backs of Mexicans, specifically Angel Guillen’s $318k 2nd place score in $2,500 NLH, which a dozen Aussie ITM finishers and a Korean have not been able to match.

Click here to view the complete Pokerati’s complete 2009 WSOP World Standings.

Perhaps in the future the WSOP could take a note from Facebook, allowing players to enter both a current city and a hometown … so say a guy like Daniel Negreanu were to win, he would be tallied for both Canada and the USA, and would have a choice over what anthem he wants to play at his bracelet ceremony. Lots of potential “fun” controversy in that … and we’d finally get to see how good all those California-centric (but US-scattered) Vietnamese really are.

Some newcomers to the 2009 WSOP money:

Both Slovenia and Slovakia booked a cash.

Also … Rhode Island
Washington DC
Puerto Rico

The UK is making a charge to challenge the Russians.

And where’s Denmark, who were certainly more than just Peter Eastgate last year? The Scandis would be doing little if it were not for a few Finns this year.

Texas is the top money-winner without a bracelet.

Mad props to the Hawaiians, who thanks to Lisa Hamilton’s bracelet in the Ladies event, silenced the Alaskans who briefly looked like they were gonna stake a claim to extra-continental American poker supremacy.

With just a few hundred dollars of separation, Maine and Spain are also in a kinda tight race money-wise. They rhyme.

World War Poker: Updated Regional Results

by , Jun 7, 2009 | 7:51 am

Through 11 events, there’s only one battle that seems particularly ferocious: California vs. Nevada.

Californians, of course, are pissed, because last year they had the Pre-eminent Poker Powerhouse title — and claims to being the Poker Capitol of the World — all wrapped up until the Nevadans made a strong showing at WSOP Europe and the Californians choked in the November Nine. This year, it’s shaping up to be as tight a battle as ever, with Cali holding a slight but at this point meaningless edge.

The Euros finally arrived once PLO came into play. So far it’s been a disappointing series for the EU, at least compared to last year, when they won 19 of 59 WSOP bracelet events. This year, a Russian took down the big prize in event #2, but since then … very little from the Europeans.

NOTE: A Finnish player won Event #12 (the $10k Mix event) though this event has not yet been added to the standings.

Pauly insists this will be the Year of the Russians. I’m not so sure … it’s clear they are the only country right now that can come close challenging the likes of Caifornia and Nevada, but take away Vitaly Lunkin’s $2million bracelet, and what have they done for me lately, yo?

Some interesting newcomers to the cash-out leaderboard:

Dominican Republic
South Korea
Cayman Islands
Virgin Islands

* Is that a country? I thought it was a beer.

You’ll also notice that we’ve added non-American continental regions …

Europe    1    13    118    $3,820,049
Asia-Pacific    0    0    11    $213,967
Latin America    0    0    7    $59,577
Africa / Mideast    0    0    3    $17,428

Click here for complete WSOP World Standings.

World War Poker

by , Jun 3, 2009 | 4:24 pm

With events finally starting to conclude, the international gold bracelet race is underway — as well as internal skirmishes between US states and Canadian provinces. Should be fun to follow along to see which regions can best back up any claims to poker dominance, and which ones will make a surprise showing. We’ve added a new Top 10 highlight feature to the Pokerati World Standings this year, for a quick glimpse at which nations stand to bring back the most WSOP cash.

The Americans look sure to hold their own, and though it’s still too early to really tell, the Russians booked a big win early to let the world — and maybe more specifically, Europe — know that these comrades didn’t just get lucky last year.

CORRECTION: The image above says “through 59 events”, but in fact, these are the standings only through three.

Tao of Pokerati: Formula One Poker

by , | 7:56 am

It’s a special moment as Vitaly Lunkin, from Moscow, receives his bracelet for the $40k, and Benjo and Pauly are there to hear the first ever playing of Gosudarstvenny Gimn Rossiyskoy Federatsii, aka the “State Hymn of the Russian Federation” — while contemplating what a European bracelet and Harrah’s diamond card means for international relations. Meanwhile, yonder down the Rio hallway, two elderly Texans race their scooters on what reliable sources say is a $50,000 prop bet. But with Amarillo Slim on his comeback tour, did Doyle Brunson take a dive?

Tao of Pokerati at the 40th WSOP
Las Vegas, NV

Episode 11.9: Ruskies Win

Episode 11.10: Scooter Race Action

Breaking (2008) News: Nevada Edges out California

Final WSOP Standings (for last year)

by , May 31, 2009 | 3:16 pm

As we now reach a point in the WSOP where tournaments will be finishing every day, Pokerati’s WSOP World Standings will be back … tracking which nation-states are kicking the most arse. While we can expect the USA to dominate simply because of sheer numbers and home-field advantage, it should be interesting to see which other countries are here to show that poker in their motherlands has fully arrived. The UK, for example — with 26 final tables, 248 cashes, and $6.5million in take-home pay in 2008 — clearly knows what they’re doing, but they couldn’t close anything out to bring home a bracelet for the Queen. It was the Russians and Germans who made the most noticeable claims to poker dominance … but not before the Danes, exclamated by Peter Eastgate’s main event victory, stepped over all of them to say, “Our small socialist utopia will leave you drawing dead on the fjord. Fůgck the G-8 powers in poker!”

On the stateside front, Pokerati declared California the unofficial capitol of the poker world … but Cali blanked at the main event final table and Nevada had a redraw with WSOP-E — and sure enough, John Juanda et al successfully wrestled away the claim.

The final 2008 WSOP World Standings:

Tao of Pokerati: The Novembrists

by , Nov 10, 2008 | 5:25 pm

Ylon Schwartz check-raises with nothing into the nuts of Peter Eastgate, and Pauly and I begin the countdown and begin speculating on what two Eurokids (and maybe even Dennis Phillips) will mean for poker/PokerStars … and where poker is in Europe these days. But are Russians dead money or just scary? Maybe a little bit of both? Plus advanced blogging strategy by Dr. Pauly.

Book 4: WSOP Final Table
Episode 4.9: The Novembrists 5:31


WSOPeople: Russians

by , | 3:00 am

… are here in (small) force, supporting their man Ivan Demidov:



It’s Over — Europe Wins!

by , | 12:41 am

At this moment, Dennis Phillips is drawing dead with one card to come. That will be 3rd place for him — his boisterous crowd and his Red Hat Brigade are honoring him the way friends of someone who has just won $4.5 million should. (That’s Greg Raymer money.) Lots of applause.

Heads-up will be Ivan Demidov vs. Peter Eastgate (who stands to be the youngest player ever to win the main event).

Year of the European Young Guns, it turns out to be.

Most of the under bets, by the way, regarding time, win … except for Jen, who took the under on 10 pm. (What was she thinking!)

Chip Counts

Peter Eastgate – 79,425,000
Ivan Demidov – 57,800,000

Clearly anybody’s game. Russians vs. Scandis. I’m going with Demidov, though. As we know, the Russians were the ones that really made a showing at the 2008 WSOP, regardless of how tomorrow turns out. Scandis were like so 2007.