Posts Tagged ‘steve-wong’

Poker Hall of Shame

RE: Dirty Chop Dodginess

by , Jul 31, 2009 | 3:39 am

photo: Steve Hall
Don’t Trust This Guy: He’s shown a willingness to screw over five fellow poker players and sully the WSOP for just $2,400.

Big congratulations to Savvas Zenonos for successfully stealing $2,400 from the prize pool in a 2009 WSOP main event mega-satellite that was supposed to be shared in a 22-player chop.

Click here for the details of how a good chop can go awry.

It was a skillful play by Zenonos, who hails from Queensland, Australia — effectively mugging five other players of $300-$500 each without even having to reach in their pockets! Nice!

On the benefit of the doubt that it was a simple mistake (despite his saying, “I’m going to screw you over,” before actually doing so), we gave him three days to make good … and then even another couple of weeks before outing him as a brazen petty poker thief here … but no luck.

Zenonos had no cashes at the 2009 WSOP, but did finish 3,050th for number of cashes in 2008, and 2,984th in WSOP money won that year. His lifetime tournament winnings total $7,675 — though these results do not include satellite wins like this one, where he won an agreed-upon $7,800 but left (supposedly he literally ran off) with $10,200.

Pokerati was unable to reach Zenonos for comment, but will respectfully keep him on The Pokerati Bad List until he pays the money he owes (to any or all of the five afflicted) or volunteers to serve 10 days in a pillory at the 2010 WSOP.

Satellite Squeezed: Dirty Chop Dodginess

by , Jul 8, 2009 | 8:20 am

UPDATE: Savvas Zenonos is the bad guy.

Actually, a picture of this ethically challenged poker player is available.

Despite Annie Duke’s assertion that “poker players are the most awesome people in the world!”, we all know the truth: you’ve got some bad apples in the mix. That became very apparent in one of the last $1,060 mega-sats for the main event — where 22 players agreed to a chop, but one of them reneged on the virtual handshake and ran off with more money than he was supposed to keep, effectively ganking $2,400 from the prize pool.

Hey, these are tough times. It’s been a long month+ on the poker frontlines … pressures are high, bankrolls tapped, and casualties have mounted. Character-testing times, to be sure … and save for a few multi-bracelet winners, we’ve all had to re-evaluate not just our play but also our purposes in life at some point during this Series. Thus it’s with little shame that Pokerati has decided to get into the business of morally righteous extortion poker collections.

So here’s the deal, dude: You have until the start of Day 3 — roughly 48 hours — to make good and pay up, or we’re going to out you as a shyster and do our best to make sure that anyone googling your name sees the post revealing you as a poker crook. Cool? It’s not libel when it’s true; and just because you told a few people, allegedly, “I’m going to screw you” prior to doing so, that hardly constitutes “fair” warning.

Click below for the breakdown of how this main event satellite finished up and a good chop went awry — leaving several players, including DonkeyBomber, coming up short when it came time for payouts:

(Way) Outside the WSOP – Day 18

by , Jun 13, 2009 | 6:02 am

Carris Outduels Somerville in Shootout

Jeffrey Carris was the last one standing in the $1,500 NL Holdem Shootout besting Jason Somerville in a brief heads-up battle as noted by Dan in the post below me. Carris collects over $300,000, while Somerville settles for nearly $200,000 in tournament winnings.

BKiCe BKiCe Baby, Too Cold

19 players return to the Rio at 1pm today in the $1,500 NL Holdem event, with Anirudh Seth or Seth Anirudh, listed in the chip counts as Andy Seth, better known as BKiCe online is the current chip leader with 1,407,000. Notables remaining include: Alan Jaffray (1,193,000), November Nine bubble boy Dean Hamrick (629,000), British actor Michael Greco (546,000) , and a triumvirate of Houstonians (Pete Vilandos – 325,000, Roberto Correa – 309,000 and Ali Davoudi – 254,000).
This final table of this event of this event is scheduled to appear at Bluff or for international viewers, but that could change if the other final table for today gets there first.

Omaha 8/Stud 8 a real page “Turner”

Jon Turner will lead the 14 players back to complete the $2,500 Omaha 8/Stud 8 event, also resume at 1pm today. Turner will start with 465,000 in chips followed by notables Carlos Mortensen (328,000), Blair Rodman (290,000), Steve Wong (226,000), Phil Ivey (161,000) and Chad Brown (23,000).

Von Halle of Fame for Jon?

$1,500 Limit Holdem resumes at 2pm today with 124 players vying for the final nine seats, with Jon Von Halle the current chip leader at 68,300. Some of the notables looking to make some money back on their investment include: Bill Chen (60,600), Justin Bonomo (44,800), Richard Brodie (41,500), Nikki Harris (39,400), and Bryan Devonshire (34,100).

PLO 8 is Great for Newitt

Jason Newitt (185,900) is the chip leader at the end of Day 1 in the $5,000 PLO 8 or Better event. He’ll join 58 others at 2pm to play down to the final table with notables such as Andy Black (97,000), Jeff Lisandro (92,000), Daniel Negreanu (78,300), Barry Shulman (49,800), Phil Ivey (40,800) still in contention.

Return of the Donkament and Heads-Up!

Saturday brings two more events to the tournament roster starting with yet another version of the $1,500 NL Holdem event as another 2,500+ being put through the grinder to see which donks survive today. Last year’s version of this particular donkament was won by Jesper Hougaard in a field of 2,447. Hougaard also won a bracelet last year at the WSOP Europe, so could another double be in the offing for this year’s winner? The WSOP Staff Guide projected a field of 2,534, but expect closer to 2800 to enter when play starts at 12pm today.

The $10,000 NL Holdem Heads-Up World Championship also starts today with a capacity field of 256 expected when play starts at 5pm. Kenny Tran is the defending champion in this event, winning over $530,000 last year. Winners of the 5pm matches will return at 10pm for round 2.

More updates during the day at Pokerati, and for other live update coverage, check out starting at 12pm PT.

WPT World Champ: Beyond the Bubble

by , Apr 22, 2008 | 6:51 pm

They’re into the money in the $25k WPT World Championship Event. Every remaining player is guaranteed $39,570 (a $14.5k payday) while they compete for the $3.4 million first prize.

As of this moment, there are 85 players left — Anna Wroblewski just went out … she was looking strong all tourney long. Our best friend Tom Schneider is still alive with a slightly above average stack. (Notice he’s our best friend as opposed to just a friend or Pokerati contributor now that he’s secured the money. If he can make the final table, he’ll be our super-best-very-best friend … and I’m sure that’s what’s motivating him.)

Other names of note (to me) that are still live include Carlos Mortenson (defending champ), Rhynie Campbell (met him last night, he seems funny and cool), Mark Seif (who’s been keeping people posted about the condition of his wife’s cervix), Isabelle Mercier and Kristy Gazes (attractive women), Jared Hamby (Go Texas!), Tommy Le (one of my MySpace friends with a really cool name), Steve and Danny Wong (Go 2007 Fantasy Team!), and TJ Cloutier (Go same Dallas flight!)


by , Jul 3, 2007 | 4:51 pm

LAS VEGAS–We’re coming to the tail end of WSOP Part I. And seeing the opening salvo of WSOP Part II — the parties, the Expo, the main event, yadda yadda.

The biggest deal today is HOWARD AND SUZIE LEDERER’S barbecue (w/ STEPHEN Z) the final table of the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha World Championship … with DOYLE BRUNSON looking to put the screws to Phil Hellmuth:

Seat 1 – Doyle Brunson – 510,000
Seat 2 – Patrik Antonius – 650,000
Seat 3 – Marco Traniello – 420,000
Seat 4 – Rene Mouritsen – 775,000
Seat 5 – Tommy Ly – 1,895,000
Seat 6 – Jonas Flug-Entin – 445,000
Seat 7 – Steve Sung – 175,000
Seat 8 – Stephen Ladowski – 360,000
Seat 9 – Robert Mizrachi – 1,090,000

Click here to follow the Best of Omaha, semi-live.

If you want to follow it closer-to-live, it’s being video broadcast today. Mean Gene tells me word is that the event won’t be sequestered … instead it will be broadcast without the hour delay, but no hole cards visible.

Meanwhile, at the secondary final table of $1,000 SHOE, PAT POELS (above) looks to reclaim the ARIZONA POSSE bracelet lead as he is gunning for his third. He was chip leader for most of the day yesterday, but took a big hit right at the end.

The Final Table:

Seat 1: Vladimir Shchemelev – 168,000
Seat 2: Chip Jett – 40,000
Seat 3: Dao Bac – 266,000
Seat 4: Imre Leibold – 250,000
Seat 5: Patrick Poels – 53,000
Seat 6: Raymond Davis – 235,000
Seat 7: Adam Geyer – 293,000
Seat 8: Michael Craig – 161,000

Click here to follow today’s most important mixed-games action.

Mad props to fellow Andy Beal stalker blogger MICHAEL CRAIG (left), who has made his second final table of the WSOP (and also has some ARIZONA roots apparently). CHIP JETT (right), who I believe hails from Arizona originally, is fighting to hang.

Tomorrow he and his wife KARINA are hosting an party at a Las Vegas strip club, by the way:

Another player to watch … RAYMOND DAVIS (left — not from Arizona) has also been kicking butt this year, and seems due for big score. LUCKY LIU (right) just missed the final table. He is STEVE WONG’S poker mentor. Shout out … nice go, LL!

Both TOM SCHNEIDER and MICHELE LEWIS are competing in the $1,500 Limit Hold’em Shootout today. Tom made the final table in this event last year, and Michele made a final table in Limit Hold’em, and cashed in a No-Limit shootout.

Since shootouts dictate that only one in 10 move on, Pokerati swears we don’t want to see them at the same table for the sake of PHOTOGRAPHIC CONVENIENCE.

DONKEY BOMBER wants to cash really bad in this — the deeper the better — to lock up Milwaukee’s Best Light Player of the Year. He’s trying to hold off JEFF LISANDRO, who is well-chipped going into Day 2 of the $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em w/ Rebuys event. Interestingly enough, these two have a pending $5,000 bet — not on who will finish higher in the POY standings, but over the NUMBER OF ENTRANTS into the main event. Tom has the under on 5,850.

If you have an opinion about the rightness of Ladies events, JENNIFER NEWELL has an interesting article — and new perspective on tournaments lacking a Y chromosome.

A different view of the POKER TENT you hear so much about:

Looks like something out of E.T., no?

This presumably has something to do with why a fourth Day 1 for the main event was added. Really would be unfair to any players who had to start in the “poker superstructure.”

Totally unrelated to poker but by a WSOP-conscious poker player … If you want to know what little things you can do in your everyday life without doing anything extra to preserve the environment, be sure to check out Lisa’s blog here.

As the WSOP rolls on, the cash games are getting bigger and bigger — but where are the pros? Follow coverage of the LIVE ACTION at PokerWorks.

Dallas Dealer BETH LAIRD, seen here with ALLEN CUNNINGHAM and STEVEN Z(olotow) in the $1,000 2-7 Triple Draw w/ Rebuys.

RAFI AMIT won that event in the early Monday a.m. As they tend to do in mixed games, the ARIZONA POSSE represented … with DANNY FUHS just missing the final table, but still scoring a POSITIVE EV cash.

RE: WSOP Final Table and Not a Final Table (3)

by , Jun 21, 2007 | 2:58 pm

LAS VEGAS—Michele, I’m wrong? Wanna bet? Steve Wong made, by definition, the final table. There were no other tables that followed the last one he sat at … and there were no other tables running when he was seated there with chips.

But because I think you sometimes know stuff and because I don’t always trust my own hearsay, I consulted higher authorities on the 7-seated 6-handed final table matter. BJ Nemeth covered the event for PokerNews and knows how to explain the intricate details of on-field tournament operations pretty-dern well:

Dan —

In most events, you need to finish in the top 9 to be recognized as “reaching the final table.” This is why Phil Hellmuth didn’t tie T.J. Cloutier for the most final tables until the tenth player busted on ESPN. The final ten players all play at the same table, but the official “final table” doesn’t start until they reach nine players.

The same logic applied to the six-handed event. They combined the final seven players into one table (rather than playing three- and four-handed), and continued play until one more player was eliminated. The remaining six players reached the official “final table.” But the final seven all played at the same table.

So if you’re asking me if the final seven players in the six-handed event played at the same table, that’s true. But play continued on Day 2 until #7 busted. The official final table started on Day 3 with just six players, and only those six players receive “credit” for reaching the final table.

Confusing enough for you? Well, that’s the way the tradition goes.

— BJ

Thanks, BJ. It does make sense. Well I mean not really — but I guess we shouldn’t be surprised to see decision-making poker people not understanding that words should almost always mean what they say, especially when numbers are attached.

ALT HED: Strunk & Poker?

PS — I have decided to stick with Steve Wong through the remainder of the Series. He knows what’s at stake and seems to have the desire necessary to deliver.

RE: WSOP Final Table and Not a Final Table

by , Jun 20, 2007 | 10:54 am

LAS VEGAS–Actually, Michele, I think Steve Wong did make the final table in the 6-handed event. (Go Fantasy Team!) There was a lot of tourney directorial hubbub today yesterday about how strange it was to play a 6-handed tournament and then put 7 at the final table.

But hey, they did a 10-handed final table yesterday, too … or at least ESPN started filming one player early — supposedly to make room for Phil Hellmuth.

WSOP Final Table and Not a final table Updates

by , Jun 19, 2007 | 11:52 pm

LAS VEGAS–Steve Wong did not seem happy about the story he was telling outside the Amazon room. Which could only mean one thing…he had been eliminated. Turns out my assumption was right and hearing that he was eliminated in 7th seemed to be an ok thing until my satiated-from-dinner brain remembered it was the six handed event. Hoyt Corkins called his all-in raise with pocket nines against Steve’s A-K (both with large stacks). No final table for Steve, but a sweet cash nonetheless.

Two final tables are going on at the moment with a woman at each table. Update: Katja Thater just took a bracelet in Razz and Beth Shak is still playing in the 3k NL event. Nice going ladies!

Steve Wong’s 7th place finish will not earn me any points (because he did not make the final table) but Phil Hellmuth’s 6th should help me in my poker fantasy. Uh, I mean, Fantasy Poker.

Afternoon’s Latest of the Greatest

by , Jun 14, 2007 | 10:18 pm

LAS VEGAS – The Pot Limit Omaha Event started today at high noon. Notable players in the Amazon room – Devilfish, James Van Alstyne, Chris Ferguson, Freddie Deeb and Jeff Madsen. Fellow Houstonian and a Pot Limit Omaha fan, Sammy Farha, lost his chance at another bracelet in this event after an early elimination. Brandi Hawbaker was also eliminated early but not before her presence created a buzz.

The 5pm Stud Hi/Lo event has more pros at every table than Seattle has coffee (not per capita). Marcel Luske, Mel Judah, Todd Brunson, Annie Duke, Bill Chen, Mike Sexton, Steve Wong, Barney Boatman and Chip Reese are just a few pros. And I mean few in the sense that I only named a few because there are really more than a few. And did I mention TOM SCHNEIDER?

More on Pokernews.

Event #3 NL Holdem $1500

by , Jun 2, 2007 | 3:05 pm

LAS VEGAS–All their tables are full, including the tables outside in a tent and regular poker room. There are rumors of 800 alternates for today’s event. And to top it off there is still a long line for today’s event. Note to self (again) next year sign up online in advance.

Two pros I know who will not being playing today are Mel Judah and Steve Wong. Mel is not playing because he is focusing on games that will give him an edge such as Omaha, Stud and six-handed NL events. Steve Wong like many others decided he didn’t want to wait in line (as of last night). Perhaps he arrived early and became an alternate.

Nonetheless, today’s event was moved from the traditional high noon to 1pm because it’s so crazy down there. has some great live updates here.

WSOP Day One

by , | 10:30 am

LAS VEGAS–It wouldn’t be a large venue if everything ran smoothly. You know, more cooks in the kitchen spoil the broth. Did I just make another kitchen comment? I gotta get out there.

The line to register for today’s event ($1500 NL Holdem) snaked through the ropes, left the Amazon Room, turned the hallway and ended past the bathrooms way down the way for the twelve hours I was there. In other words…the line was much, much longer than the previous two years. So long in fact, that I and several other pros are not playing simply because we didn’t want to wait to register. The satellite lines were shorter but still quite a wait.

Yesterday’s hot topic was the new Bicycle playing cards. The nines and sixes looked the same. Not only did you need a monocle to read the tiny number on the top corner but you had to read the large numbers in the middle section of the card on the board simply because that’s what was visible. So it was like playing with two different decks of cards. Oh, and Jeffrey Pollack’s name on the back side of the card…was mispelled. Did that confuse you? That was the point because now you know how it truly felt to play with those cards.

I also had the chance to spend some time with the WCP boys. They are totally the guys you would want to bring home to mom a bunch of wild, rude, crude womanizers.

David Levi has made the final TV table for the Mandalay WPT main event.

Finally, I got a chance along with Tiffany Michelle to interview some players for

WSOP Fantasy Girl

by , May 26, 2007 | 8:11 pm

Check it out … Michele has gotten in on the rotisserie poker thing for the World Series. She’s competing against some good peeps in the WLOFPLL (World League of Fantasy Poker Leagues League). Though I woulda taken JC Tran with her first pick, I think Phil Hellmuth shouldn’t be as big of a surprise as some of her competitors contend.

We’ll see, what do I know. Let’s just hope she does better than I am doing in the Batface fantasy game.

(And super-go Steve Wong! You got a lotta Pokerati bankin’ on you.)

Updates, News & Charity, OH MY!

by , May 1, 2007 | 11:15 am

A lot of things have been going on despite this being “the breath before the plunge” (Gandalf 2003). Meaning, this is the last month before the 2007 WSOP.

Caesar’s Circuit Day 1 – David Pham, Steve Wong & Justin Bonomo led the Caesar’s Palace Poker Room filled with big name players such as Shannon Shorr, Layne Flack, Joe Bartholdi, Greg Raymer, David Plastik and Bull Riding Master Joe Sebok. See Photos here.

CardPlayer has posted a video with Howard Lederer and Alfonse D’Amato discussing Barney Frank’s new bill to help legalize and regulate (nice word) online poker in the U.S.

And since we’ve been on the topic of charities…check out this bit on Liz Lieu.

Freshie WPT Update

by , Apr 23, 2007 | 10:56 pm

I spoke with both David Levi and Steve Wong this evening for their updates which you can view on CardPlayer. David was not excited about ending day1 with 25k in chips but worked hard to finish today with 230,000k in chips and Steve Wong is rocking the Fontana in 4th with 476,000 bones! They both humbly said they were feeling good about their play but knew they had a long way to go. Two of my favorite Bellagio Sports Bar friends Amir Vahedi & Freddie Deeb are tied for 23rd with 240,000 in chips.

The Donkey Bomber is not only in 14th place tonight but CardPlayer even mentioned his name! Go Tom, more from you Dan/Karridy.

Fellow Houstonians, Sammy Farha is 9th with 345,000 and John “whadayagonnado boys” Bonnetti is hanging in there with 30k.

Other notables still in are Joe Sebok, Phil Ivey, Lyle Berman, Andy Black, Tran and Chan and Barney Boatmaaaan. But leading the pack is one of the greatest players in the world, Phil Hellmuth with 528,100 (don’t lose that 100 dollar chip, Phil).

Sadly Marcel Luske, Gavin Smith, Joe Bartholdi (who told me Friday he was ready to play this tournament) and Doyle Brunson have been eliminated.

And last but not least…The Ladies or as Wicked Chops Poker would say…crazy bitches.
Newcomer Anna Wroblewski leads the women with 350,000 in 7th place with Vanessa Rousso behind her in 53rd stacking up 115,000. Other ladies holding their own are Isabelle Mercier, Melissa Hayden, Erica Schoenberg, Jennifer Harman, Liz Lieu (who won her seat in a satellite), Kathy Liebert and Kristy Gazes.

Good luck to all and to all a good night.

But I played really well…

by , Mar 1, 2007 | 1:01 am

I need to stop letting you know when I play a major tournament because it seems I only have a bust to report lately. This time 25 spots from the money. I ended up short stacked with KJs under the gun and had to move in with an M of 3. Pocket Aces called, flopped a set and that ended me.

Despite my sob story…The Wynn is running a nice tournament with a $20 comp to any restaurant (much better different from the Rio Poker Kitchen). There are not a lot of pros here yet but I’m sure they are coming. Today’s sitings included Marcel Luske, Steve Wong (Happy Birthday, Steve!), TJ Cloutier & David Plastik (playing the final table from Tuesday’s event).

I’ve been up for 20 hours now so I should probably get some rest but yet…the sounds, the lights, the energy…I love Las Vegas.