Posts Tagged ‘WSOP’


by , Jul 10, 2012 | 12:57 pm

Antonio Esfandiari receives a really big check, with a really big number
Photo: “WhoJedi” Newnum

All three starting days of the WSOP Main Event are in the books and the numbers are in. A total of 6,598 registered for the tournament meaning attendance is down for only the 4th time in WSOP history*. First place pays out $8,527,982 and a nifty new bracelet, the final 7 are all guaranteed a 7-digit payday. They are paying an evil 666 spots and min-cash will earn $19,227.

Day 2A and 2B are now underway in the Amazon, Brasilia, and Pavilion Rooms. Both restarts are playing indepent of the other and will not combine until Day 3 on Wednesday. 657 players survived Day 1A and 1,387 on Day 1B. Five full levels of play today with 2,300 players returning tomorrow for Day 2C.

* 1991/92 – 215 players to 201
2006/07 – 8,773 players to 6,358 (thank you UIEGA)
2008/09 – 6,844 players to 6,358 (thank you horrible WSOP planning)

Day 1A Top/Notable Counts:

William John – 266,700
Chance Kornuth – 141,775
Leo Wolpert – 128,300
Eric Baldwin – 123,150
Faraz Jaka – 115,775
Karina Jett – 68,550
Wendeen Eolis – 55,100
David Williams – 9,100
Kenneth Shelton – 1,225
Complete Day 1A Chip Counts

Day 1B Top/Notable Counts:

John Hoang – 180,000
Vanessa Selbst – 168,350
Jason Somerville – 144,725
Daniel Negreanu – 140,575
Maria Ho – 138,425
Ignatius J. Reilly – 127,272
Shaun Deeb – 125,900
Tom Scheider – 53,500
Matt Keikoan – 5,125
Complete Day 1B Chip Counts

Day 1C Top/Notable Counts:

Jason Laso – 240,350
Brandon Adams – 153,100
Jake Cody – 124,775
Paul McGuire – 120,420
Joe Cada – 117,375
Jason Young – 76,300
Phil Ivey – 11,200
Jack King – 1,000
Complete Day 1C Chip Counts

Link Dump

Tweet of the Day – It seemed like Doyle Brunson was going to stand by his decision to skip the Main Event this year, but backed off the idea and survived Day 1C with 81,400. The WSOP just wouldn’t be the same without Texas Dolly in the Main.

Ivey League: A One-on-One Interview with Phil Ivey – Ivey has been pretty tight lipped over the years and rarely gives interviews. Nolan Dalla always gets his story, he was summoned to the Ivey travelling mansion for a little sitdown.

Celebrities Playing 2012 World Series of Poker Main Event – CardPlayer has your rundown of the famous non-poker celebs who played in the Main Event. Causing the most buzz was Shane Warne, not for his play but because his fiancé Elizabeth Hurley was on the rail.

Darvin Moon Slams Jeffrey Pollack Over HPT Acquisition – If Darvin Moon calls you a douchebag, then you’re a douchebag. Pretty much sums the response of every single employee who was just screwed over (your humble author as well).

WSOP VIDEO: Main Event Day 1C Headlines & Highlights – BLUFF video team keeps the updates fun and carefree, plus a lot of bloopers.

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by , Jul 8, 2012 | 2:34 pm

Nick Schulman

Viacheslav Zhukov $330,277 – Event #58 $3,000 PLO/8
Dominik Nitsche $654,797 – Event #59 $1,000 NLHE
Nick Schulman $294,321 – Event #60 2-7 NL Lowball

Things are underway in the WSOP Main Event when players rolled into the Amazon and Pavilion Rooms on Saturday for Day 1A. We witnessed the usual crush of players standing just outside the locked doors begging security to let them in, especially when they saw me sneak in with WhoJedi. The smart veteran stays out of the way as the mass of dead money run toward their tables with 15 minutes, and a Jack Effel speech, before the cards actually fly.

1,066 players registered for Day 1A, and while the WSOP staff played it up like an increase, those numbers are skewed when you take one less starting day into account. I was surprised when I walked into the Pavilion and found it void of Main Event players and only one section in Brasilia in use. Fully expect the next two days to pick the numbers back up with Day 1B already showing more players and Day 1C will be even bigger.

Doubtful this year will top the 6,865 players in the 2011 Main Event, but 6k will be a nice number one year after the DoJ indictments and online poker shutdown.

The biggest surprise of the day was Phil Hellmuth showing up practically on time without his normal, ridiculous spectacle entry. A few hours later, Phil Hellmuth was also quietly walking out of the Amazon Room after busting.

Amazon Room at the start of WSOP 2012 Main Event Day 1A

In other WSOP news, Nick Schulman won his 2nd WSOP bracelet in the $10,000 2-7 Lowball No Limit tournament (both of his bracelets coming in the same event, first in 2009) over an impressive final table. John Juanda seems to like the game as well, making the final table of this event for the 4th year in a row. Schulman beat Mike Wattel heads up for the win and $294,321.

You can file the last $1,000 NLH event of the summer under “Something New Every Day”. Usually events go longer than the schedule due to hard stop times and exhaustion. This $1k had multiple starting days and was schedule to play down to the final table Saturday evening with the players returning Sunday for the final table. Instead the 50 other players managed to dust off their stacks to German Dominik Nitsche a full day early. The young pro picked up $654,797 and the final bracelet before the November Nine.

Link Dump

Tweet of the Day – Ashton Griffin states something in 140 characters that a lot of poker players don’t understand.

Kevin Pollak Talks About Playing in the 2012 WSOP – Actor Kevin Pollach took his seat on Day 1A of the Main Event and Julio Rodriguez caught up with him for an interview. No word if he did the entire interview using the voice of Christopher Walken.

Scandal just part of the deal at WSOP – The most annoying WSOP article I’ve read this summer. Not sure if the author understands the WSOP or has spent much time around the Rio. I certainly know a lot of players interested in the ongoing FTP/Stars/UB saga.

Main Event Snapshot with Tatjana Pasalic – Tatjana showed up in a cat suit costume for Day 1A, to the delight of her tablemates and every photographer in the room. Ray Ramona just doesn’t generate that kind of buzz. Or SEO value.


by , Jul 6, 2012 | 2:36 pm

Tomas Junek
1st WSOP bracelet for Czech Republic

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Tomas Junek $661,022 – Event #56 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em
Greg Merson $1,136,197 – Event #57 $10,000 NLH 6-Max

The opening acts are just about done and we’re just one day away from kicking off the WSOP Main Event. The last open tournament started on Thursday with just the National Championship and Bracelet Bounty events to play out along with the $10k 2-7 No Limit and huge $1,000 No Limit Hold’em tournaments.

That means the traditional pre-Main Event slow day no longer exists. Players and fans are packed in every room, the registration line is long and surly, there are more than a few hung over people staggering around.

It also means the WSOP party season rolled around. Plenty of opportunities to hangout one last time before “summer camp” ends or just get messed up and embarrass yourself in front of strangers. Frank Kassela always throws a great BBQ on July 4th complete with degenerate competitions and now a mechanical bull. QuadJacks took over BLUFF Magazine’s yearly open bar/lap dance festival at Sapphire. 2+2 will have their traditional whine and wine fest Friday night. Vanessa Ruosso/Maria Ho/Liv Boeree also hosted a blowout at their impressive mansion on July 4th.

Be safe out there and don’t let the first Tweet of the Day happen to you.

Link Dump

Tweet of the Day 1 – Like I said, parties are popping up all over the place at this point in the WSOP. Occasionally something like this happens, pretty happy it wasn’t me.

Tweet of the Day 2 – I will never ever pass up a chance to rag on the poker forum jockeys. Proof the Infinite Monkey theorem is crap, look it up. @BrickLV provided my first laugh of the day.

Sam Trickett Attacked – Details are still scarce other than what has been put out there on Twitter, but the 2nd place finisher in the Big One was jumped by 6 guys after a night at the club and he took a beating.

Who to Watch in WSOP National Championship – The National Championship begins on Friday featuring the top performers from the WSOP and WSOP Circuit Event. Paul Oresteen has a rundown of some players to watch.

Phil Hellmuth BIG ONE Q&A – PokerListings interviewed Phil Hellmuth following his 4th place finish in the Big One for One Drop. “No regrets” as $2.6 million has a way of comforting.

Phil Hellmuth Uses White Magic – Since I was watching the Big One from atop the Mothership, I missed the ESPN broadcast and this little gem from Mr. Phil Hellmuth. Screw you kids and your black magic.


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.

Additional poker news presented by

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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.

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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 28, 2012 | 7:35 pm

Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi wins the Poker Players Championship
Photo: Jay “WhoJedi” Newnum

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Henry Lu $654,380 – Event #43 $1,500 No Limit Hold’em
Rocco Palumbo $464,464 – Event #44 $1,000 No Limit Hold’em
Michael Mizrazchi $1,451,527 – Event #45 $50,000 Players Championship
Joey Weissman $694,609 – Event #46 $2,500 No Limit Hold’em

It was a good day to be a grinder, or The Grinder.

Thursday’s noon tournament was a $5,000 No Limit Hold’em event which drew a fat number of 1,001 players for an increase of 15% over last year. First place will nab just south of seven figures and the winner will have to get through a very deep field. 2011 November Niner Matt Giannetti was the early leader on dinner break. Fun table of Day 1 included Brandon Meyers, Peter Eastgate, Noah Schwartz, Eric Froehlich, Darryll Fish, Allen Kessler, and Layne Flack. It was a battle to just get a word in.

Probably the toughest field each year is on display during the $50,000 Poker Players Championship. 108 players entered the event five long days ago and it was Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi who would become the first two-time winner of the Chip Reese Trophy. The field didn’t make it into the money until late on Day 4 with Benjamin Yu as the unfortunate bubble boy (after torturing Phil Hellmuth all of Day 3).

The Grinder beat Chris Klodnicki heads up and grabbed just $1,451,527 for his win. There will be some happy club owners tonight.

Link Dump

Tweet(s) of the Day – It’s not often I find myself agreeing 100% with Negreanu, but this is a no brainer. I always agree with Maridu, so I tacked on an earlier tweet so it will be stuck in your head next time you walk outside in the hot, Vegas wind.

Should Men Be Allowed to Play in the Ladies Event? – I guess that question has to be asked, even though the answer is pretty obvious to most civilized folk. BLUFF asked the question and everyone agreed. But I suspected we’ll be publishing a list of tools who did it anyway. Don’t be a douche.

$25k WSOP Fantasy Update – PokerListing has your $25k WSOP Fantasy Update so you can sweat the action of team who can throw around $25k like they are singles at a G-Vegas strip club. Jason Mercier’s team has the lead but Robert Mizrachi will make a big jump with The Grinder’s win.

EU Event Discusses Online Gaming – Great news for online poker in Europe, meanwhile we’re still at the mercy of our nanny state to keep us away from the great evil of online gaming.

QuadJacks: Women in PokerPoker player and chess master (plus a good South Philly girl) Jennifer Shahade sat down with QuadJack to discuss women in poker.

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by , Jun 25, 2012 | 7:12 pm

Ronnie Bardah

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Ronnie Bardah $182,088 – Event #40 $2,500 LHE 6-Handed
Greg Ostrander $742,072 – Event #41 $3,000 NLHE
Oleksii Kovalchuk $228,014 – Event #42 Omaha/Stud Hi-Lo

Each summer the “poker media” likes to slap labels on the WSOP a few weeks into the summer, perhaps a lazy way to summarize the series in 4 words. Year of the Pro, Year of the Women, Year of the Amateur, etc, etc, ad nauseum. This year has seen a little bit of everything with top pros picking up bracelets, with the good guys, long suffering, and ladies also getting in the act.

There was a little debate whether Allyn Jaffrey Shulman’s win broke the four year streak of all male bracelet winners (aside from the Ladies Championship) since it occurred in the Seniors Championship. Jackie Glazier almost erased that question. The Australian poker player has plenty of results on her resume but came to the $3,000 No Limit Hold’em final table with the chip lead and her eye on the title.

After a long evening, she found herself heads up with Greg Ostrander for the bracelet with a significant chiplead when the hard stop time rolled around. Ostrander opted to pause play for the day and that seemed to kill Glazier momentum and she settled for a second place finish.

Glazier was the 10th women to make a final table this summer and scored the 5th highest payout for a woman player in WSOP history.

Link Dump

Tweet(s) o’ the Day – It would have been pretty unthinkable just a few years ago that Doyle Brunson would miss the $50,000 Players Championship. While his WSOP schedule has been cut way back, the 10-time bracelet winner is still out there crushing big cash games. In the end, Texas Dolly was in his seat at the start of play.

WSOP Player of the Year Update – The Player of the Year list is up to date through the latest events and Phil Ivey continues to lead over John Monnette, Andy Frankenberger, Phil Hellmuth, and newly crowned bracelet winner Jan-Peter Jachtmann. Still plenty of time and some big money events for others to make up ground. For anyone wondering, Allen “Complainsaw” Kessler is not in the Top 500.

It’s time for civil behavior from the pokerati – Norman Chad (your 6th place finisher in the Omaha/Stud Hi-Lo event) has his latest piece for the Washington Post where he talks about civility in poker. While I think a lot of the top young pros are doing a good job of expanding their horizons, there is still something rotten in the soft nougat center. Also, wash your damn hands!

$50k Players Championship Decline – While it wasn’t the smallest field in the short history of the $50k Players Championship, the 108 player field only missed that number by 13. There are plenty of reasons to speculate and Julio Rodriguez at CardPlayer has his ideas. Also, for the first time in history, no women entered the Players Championship.

WSOP Week #3 Behind the Scenes – Perhaps a little behind the times but who doesn’t like to watch Kristy Arnett report about odd ball things around the Rio?


by , Jun 23, 2012 | 8:06 pm

David Baker

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Craig McCorkell $368,593 – Event #36 $3,000 NLH Shootout
David Baker $271,312 – Event #37 $2,500 8-Game Mix
Dung Nguyen $607,200 – Event #38 $1,500 NLHE
Jan-Peter Jachtmann $661,000 – Event #39 $10,000 PLO

For the second time this summer, a long suffering poker player has finally picked up their first WSOP bracelet. Following in the steps of Andy Bloch, David “ODB” Baker won the $2,500 8-Game Mix event to earn his first ever WSOP tournament after 27 cashes.

Baker’s first WSOP cash came back in 2004 and he made six final tables with three 3rd place finishes before this event. He had over $1,000,000 in career earnings at the WSOP but now can be included amongst the champions. Call him “ODB” or “The Original” but you now you also call him a WSOP bracelet winner.

On a side not, have two players with the same name won bracelets in the same year? I will have to ask Nolan Dalla or Kevmath.

Link Dump

Tweet o’ the Day – Say what you want about Shaun Deeb, but if he’s able to keep a 12-time bracelet winner away from a WSOP event then he must have him hooked on the line pretty well.

Nevada Gaming Commission Approves First Online Licenses – BLUFF Magazine has a run down of the current state of affairs regarding online poker. Biggest news of the week was the Nevada Gaming Commission approving an Internet poker license to two companies. Baby steps.

Poker Chip Stack Art Shots – Everybody likes pretty pictures. Especially in poker, when reading is secondary to 140 characters of snark or lengthy, grammar-challenged forum posts. Matt Showell at PokerListings has all the chip-porn you can get on his latest Picture Book.

Einhorn Enters $1 Million Buy-In Poker Tournament – David Einhorn, co-founder of Greenlight Capital Inc., has thrown his name into the ring to participate in this year’s $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop event at the WSOP. This brings the number of “confirmed” players in the event up to 42. Einhorn has one WSOP cash to his resume, he finished 18th at the 2006 WSOP Main Event for $659,730. He promptly turned around and donated the entire prize to charity.

What Event Would You Like To See Added to the WSOP Schedule? – The BLUFF video team asked Erik Seidel, Lauren Kling, and Sorel Mizzi what events they would like added to the WSOP.

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by , Jun 21, 2012 | 1:27 pm

Naoya Kihara

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Naoya Kihara $512,029 – Event #34 $5,000 PLO 6-Handed
Chris Tryba $210,107 – Event #35 $2,500 Mixed Hold’em

An interesting part of hanging around the Rio during the WSOP is seeing something new every day. Usually it’s bizarre like the man banging his head up against the Amazon Room wall or a dealer spreading a flop during a Deuce-to-Seven hand. Yesterday’s something new was WSOP history.

Naoya Kihara defeated Chris DeMaci to win the $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha 6-Handed bracelet, becoming the first WSOP bracelet winner from Japan. Kihara earned $512,029 (or ¥41,000,000*) and looks to find an online sponsorship so he can advance his online career.

(* – h/t Lance Bradley)

Also winning yesterday, in pretty spectacular fashion, was Chris Tryba. He worked his way through the final table of the $2,500 Mix Hold’em final table until he was heads up with Scary-to-Me Erik Cajelais. They went back and forth as normal until the final hand when Cajelias shoved with a King high straight only to get snapped off by Tryba’s rivered straight flush. There was much screaming from your latest WSOP champion.


There are a few times during the WSOP when you can be caught in a dangerous situation. Veterans of the Rio Convention Center know to avoid the hallways during the first break of a $1,000 or $1,500 tournaments. The start of the Seniors Championship brings with it the danger of being run over by a constant stream of scooters.

On Wednesday you didn’t want to be near the Mothership when Phil Ivey busted from the Mixed Hold’em event. The place was nearly deserted before Ivey hit the cage. The final table played out in front of friends and family.

Link Dump

Tweet(s) o’ the Day – I don’t use hashtags on Twitter for their intended purpose, usually I’m just being a smartass. Wednesday provided a reason to search on a hashtag. Nobody believes Phil Ivey does his own tweets, so everybody jumped on the train to create some #RealIveyTweets. Click the link above for the entire stream.

43 Things You Probably Don’t Know About the World Series of Poker – Martin Harris has a great list of little known trivia from each of the 43 years of the WSOP. One of the few “don’t miss” articles of the summer.

Ivey Dominant, But Aloof Toward Poker Community – It’s not that Phil Ivey doesn’t like you, he just doesn’t care who you are. Perhaps if someone presented their Full Tilt Black Card it would make a difference.

Rafa Nadal joins PokerStars – The 11-time tennis Grand Slam winner was added to Team PokerStars SportStars just a few weeks after winning the French Open. Nadal joins Boris Becker (tennis legend), Fatima Moreira de Melo (field hockey), Marcus Hellner (cross-country skier).

Favorite Tournament Organizer – Doesn’t have much to do with the WSOP but it does have Tatjana Pasalic. The Matt Savage directed WPT wins the poll.

Weekly Poll Results – Favorite Tournament Organizer – Question of the day Video

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by , Jun 18, 2012 | 6:14 pm

Allyn Jaffrey Shulman

Today’s WSOP Bracelet Boxscore

Allyn Jaffrey Shulman $603,713 – Event #29 $1,000 Seniors
Larry Wright $101,975 – Event #30 $1,500 NL Draw Lowball

To paraphase former President Gerald Ford, “our long poker nightmare is over.” After more than four years, a woman has won a non-Ladies Championship WSOP. Allyn Jaffrey Shulman won the 2012 WSOP Seniors Championship over one of the biggest fields in poker history hopefully putting to rest the gender issue for a while. Vanessa Selbst was the last to win a bracelet in 2008 $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha event.

The Seniors Championship featured the single biggest one day starting field tournament in poker history and Shulman, wife of WSOP bracelet winner Barry Shulman, had a battle at the final table with pros Hoyt Corkins and Dennis Phillips still vying for the title. 4,128 players began the tournament on Friday and it took into Monday afternoon to crown the latest champion to the delight of an entertained crowd. Shulman collected $603,713, the gold bracelet, and will have her name inscribed on a monstrous Eagle Trophy.

Never let it be said that Ty Stewart would turn down an opportunity for hyperbole, declaring the Shulmans as the “first family of poker”. There might be a few people from Texas who disagree.

In other poker news, BLUFF Magazine’s Eric Morris has decided to enter his wife into the $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop tournament to counter the Shulmans.*

* – Not even remotely true.

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Tweet o’ the Day – Welcome to the Nanny State, Wretchy. Fight the power, stick it to the man.

Sam Trickett and Andrew Feldman Feuding – This one popped up on 2+2 before the WSOP when Sam Trickett posted he was owed money by another poker player but was not ready to out him to the public yet. Looks like it turns out to be Andrew Feldman (poker player, not king of ESPN Poker) for something like €25,000.

Dealers Complain Over Open Mic – Dealers complain, floorstaff complain, and players complain non-stop but it usually doesn’t happen over an open microphone at a live streamed final table. Someone mentioned this on 2+2 but no corroboration (yet*) and those sleuths over on the forums must have grabbed a recording if it truly happened.

* Kevmath confirms, tis true.

$25k Fantasy Poker Update – Just about halfway through the 2012 WSOP and Robert Mizrachi’s Fantasy Poker Team is leading the charge at this point with the big boosts coming from Brock Parker and Barry Greenstein. 11 teams poneyed up $25,000 for a little extra gamble and 1st place will pickup $178,750. Check the site for details and follow the action.

Calling the Clock: Jennifer “Jennicide” Leigh – Last time it was Maria Ho, this time the gang at PokerNews grabbed Jennifer “Jennicide” Leigh for a little conversation.

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 17, 2012 | 11:30 am

Ylon Schwartz

Today’s WSOP Boxscore

Joe Cassidy $294,777 – Event #24 $5,000 Omaha/8
Brian Meinders $116,118 – Event #25 $1,500 LHE Shootout
Austin Scott $361,797 – Event #26 $3,000 Pot Limit Omaha
Ylon Schwartz $267,081 – Event #27 $1,500 H.O.R.S.E.
Timothy Adams $392,476 – Event #28 $2,500 NLH 4-Max

Ylon Schwartz was known best before yesterday as a member of the inaugural November Nine class when he when 4th place in the WSOP Main Event. Now he can also be called a WSOP Champion after winning the $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. ahead of 888 other players and picking up $267,081. Schwartz was one of the more interesting players at the 2008 WSOP Main Event final table and the former Chess professional had to play more than 40 hours of the various games to outlast David Chiu for the title.

Sunday promises to be a big day at the Rio with the large field $1,000 NLH event kicking off, the Seniors Championship has plenty of big names on the last day, and the 2-7 NL Single Draw final table is stacked with big names including Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi, Brandon Cantu, Rep Porter, Erick “[snark redacted]” Lindgren, and Andrew “LuckyChewy” Lichtenberger. Two more bracelets and a sea of lemurs.

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Tweet o’ the Day – Doyle Brunson rules all, my favorite response was “I can almost here(sic) the RIP Doyle starting up again.”

WTF Tweet o’ the Day – I hear Full Tilt may have some spots open

Record Smashing Friday at the Rio – Nothing major on Friday, just the single largest live poker starting day in this history of poker. 4,128 players showed up for the $1,000 Seniors Event, breaking the previous record set by the same event last year.

Tony G Bows Out of the Big One – The verbose Antanas “Tony G” Guoga has pulled out of the $1,000,000 buyin Big One for One Drop tournament this summer at the WSOP. Per PokerNews, he has decided to withdraw “due to his duties with the Lithuanian basketball team.”

There’s Something About Ivey – I understand, don’t necessarily agree with it, but understand most everyone is a big fanboy of Phil Ivey despite about 4 million rea$ons to feel otherwise. It might have something to do with still being the greatest player in the universe. PokerListings pulled together a nice twitter list of the poker world showing their Ivey love.

Video of the Day – PokerNews caught up with Maria Ho as part of their “Explain This” features. Top shelf grab because who doesn’t want to watch and hear Maria Ho.

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 14, 2012 | 11:22 am

Randy Ohel

Today’s WSOP Boxscore

Michael Gathy $440,829 – Event #21 $1,000 No Limit Hold’em
Randy Ohel $145,247 – Event #22 $2,500 2-7 Triple Draw
Simon Charette $567,624 – Event #23 $3,000 NLH 6-Max
??????????? $294,777 – Event #24 $5,000 Omaha/8

Overtime at the WSOP. Event #24 was the first final table this summer to hit a hard stop time so we do not know who will own the bracelet but we know it will not be Phil Ivey. The Omaha/8 final table was full of stars with 17 total WSOP bracelets represented between Phil Ivey, Scotty Nguyen, Mike Matusow, and Meng La. Ivey had a huge chiplead at different times during the final table but was only able to “manage” a 3rd place finish.

Scotty Nguyen and Joe Cassidy return later today to play it down to the bracelet with Cassidy leading Nguyen 3,000,000 to 845,000.


There seems to be a little storm brewing around the daily WSOP Deepstack events. I haven’t followed the numbers too closely but yesterday’s 2pm drew an impressive 1,167 players for $227,565 prizepool and $46,078 for first place. Not too shoddy at all for the small price of $235.

But some players have been making very valid complaints about how the tournaments are being handled by the staff at the WSOP. Rude floor staff, mishandled rulings, and one bizarre situation involving a moved stack with the player on break. Whether this is the norm or just unique situations, it’s hard to believe the WSOP would treat their customers as bad as it sounds. Even if these fields are not stacked full of your high rollers, their money spends just as well as Ivey’s.

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Insta Poker Pro App Launched – A new and different poker app from the minds of Antonio Esfandiari, Huck Seed, Daniel O’Brien, and others. It’s a training application as well as serving up game action with bonus in-app currency for correct play. Worth checking out and is available for free in the Apple App Store and will soon be available for Android.

Tom “durrrr” Dwan Renews Vow – Tom Dwan has been one of the few former members of Team Full Tilt to speak out since Black Friday. He spoke with and reiterated his pledge to pay back the players. Also with this gem:

Phil Ivey seems to have taken quite a lot of flak for his actions in suing Full Tilt. Do you think that’s justified?

I think the reasons for doing what he did were decent, but the way he went about them were pretty ridiculous.

BLUFF Photo Blog – Heather Borowinski continues to do great photo work over at BLUFF and yesterday’s Photo Blog contained a rather spiffy looking Tim “Timtern” Fiorvanti and the culprit who stole David Williams lunch from All American Dave’s (William Harrington, ladies and gentlemen. The man who thinks high-end healthy lunches are free)

WSOP Player of the Year Update – 23 events are in books and Mr. Phil Ivey is sitting atop all else. The player who beat him heads up for a WSOP bracelet earlier, Andy Frankenberger, sits just behind him in 2nd place. Sitting along in 487th place, Allen “Chainsaw” Kessler.

Video of the Day – I don’t remember who posted this video a few days ago (feel free to drop a line and remind me) but it’s…. well I agree with someone else who said it would have been a great poker video.

Back in 2005.

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.

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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.


by , Jun 9, 2012 | 12:45 pm

Brandon Schaefer

Today’s WSOP Boxscore

Brian Hastings $371,498 – Event #12 $10,000 Heads Up
David Arsht $211,921 – Event #13 $1,500 Limit Hold’em
Brandon Schaefer $311,174 – Event #14 $1,500 Shootout
Adam Friedman $269,037 – Event #15 $5,000 Stud Hi-Lo


Sometimes I stop being jaded, and that happens when one of the good guys win. Brandon Schaefer entered the $1,500 NLHE Shootout at the last minute even though he hadn’t planned on playing. He was on leave from the US Army and in town to witness the Electric Daisy Carnival and decided to play an event. After 3 days on the tables, he is the latest WSOP Champion.

Schaefer was an immediate success when he won his first tournament in 2005 at the EPT Deauville and then finished 2nd in the EPT Grand Final. After playing the circuit for years, he decided he wanted a change and enlisted in the US Army to train as a helicopter pilot. He now has a few days to enjoy his victory, and a 300,000 rave of the insane, before he checks in on June 15th for flight training.

Schaefer outlasted 1,137 other players for his first WSOP bracelet, $311,174, and a lot of happy friends.

Ryan Lucchesi at BLUFF Magazine has a very nice writeup.


In other news: Phil Ivey, the greatest player on the planet, made a final table!

And no one showed up.

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WSOP Live Stream – Hard to believe it’s taken me this long to link up the WSOP live stream. Other than bizarre idea of putting the secondary feature table on stage in the Pavilion Room, the live stream has been running pretty well with only a few hiccups. A lot of the credit goes to the work of infamous Jay “WhoJedi” Newnum.

Nevada Issues Interactive Gaming Licenses – If you missed it earlier, Howard Stutz reported on the latest meeting of the Nevada Gaming Control Board where Bally Technologies and International Game Technologies were recommended for the first gaming licenses ever to be issued to a manufacturer of online gaming systems.

Women Crushing the 2012 WSOP – Vanessa Selbst, Annette Obrestad, Amanda Musumeci, and Xuan Liu are just a few of the top scoring women this year and Julio Rodriguez has the number breakdown over on CardPlayer.

ESPN Poker: Bloch finally gets his bracelet – Gary Wise has a nice article on Andy Bloch winning his first WSOP bracelet last weekend and his attempts at another.

BLUFF Headlines & Highlights – And bloopers.