The World Series of Poker has announced a special celebratory event for their 50th anniversary, the ‘First Fifty Honors & Dinner’ commemorating the ‘50 Greatest Poker Players’ as well as seven WSOP categories to be voted on by the public and poker players themselves.
There are already several events in the schedule to mark the 50th year of poker’s greatest series, the WSOP adding the Big 50 event and a $50k buy-in high roller tournament to the series, which runs from May 28th until July 16th.
The addition of the ‘First Fifty Honors & Dinner’ will see WSOP gold bracelet winners and invited VIP guests gather in the Brasilia Ballroom at the Rio Hotel and casino on the evening of Saturday, June 29th. A celebration dinner will be followed by the awards ceremony, hosted by ESPN’s long-time WSOP commentary team of Lon McEachern and Norman Chad.
WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart said in a press release:
“From its founding by the Binion family in 1970, no one could have foreseen what the modern-day World Series of Poker has become.” He added: “It’s only fitting we take an evening out from poker playing to celebrate the great game of poker and all the characters who have made a mark on the WSOP over the past five decades.”
There are seven main categories to be voted on, as listed below:
Most Memorable WSOP TV Hand
Best Overall WSOP Performance (Single Year)
Most Likely to Succeed (Player currently 35 or under to win the Most Gold Bracelets between 2020-2070)
Fan Favorite Player
WSOP’s Favorite Bad Boy
Most Impressive Main Event Win
Four Most Important Players in WSOP History
Voting is already open through and will remain so through June 15, 2019, details in the tweeted link above.
WSOP and all-round ‘love him or loathe him’ character William Kassouf is already tweeting with glee at his inclusion in the ‘Bad Boy’ category…
A special 8th category will see poker industry stalwarts and media members decide on the 50 Greatest Poker Players in WSOP history, and this can include “cash game players, mixed games players, online players or tournament players.”
Daniel Negreanu and Amanda Leatherman got married in a ceremony at the Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, California. It seems like it was just yesterday when we reported on these two love birds getting together, and now they’ve officially tied the knot.
Somehow, our invitation must have been lost in the mail, but no worries, we still followed the event using the official hashtag #ALovesTheD.
...No really, that’s the actual hashtag.
The bride and groom were joined by their loved ones, including quite a few from the poker community. Phil Hellmuth was among those in attendance and took a lot of great pictures of the happy couple and guests.
Hellmuth also took this video of the wedding vows.
Meanwhile Matt Stout took this great picture of the couple’s first kiss as husband and wife.
Jennifer Tilly was also in attendance, capturing this photo of the newlyweds.
After the wedding comes the reception, here are a few more pictures, including one that gives a better look at Amanda’s wedding dress.
Doyle Brunson couldn’t be there, but still offered a piece of advice for the groom.
Seems like everybody had a great time. Congratulations to the happy couple!
Ronnie Bardah, a well-known player from the American live poker scene, is rumoured to be one of the contestants on the 39th season of Survivor on CBS. This is the third well-known face from the US live poker scene to take part on the iconic TV show.
Ryan Feldman, the producer at Live at the Bike, tweeted the news to his followers and posted up the cast for the forthcoming season.
Bardah isn’t a seriously high-profile player but he has come to our attention over the years. For one thing, he still holds the record for the most consecutive cashes in the World Series of Poker Main Event - five from 2010-2014.
He also collected a WSOP gold bracelet in 2012 for winning a $2,500 6-Max Limit Hold’em event, beating Sorel Mizzi amongst many others.
Other notable players who have braved the Survivor show are Garrett Adelstein, Jean-Robert Bellande on Survivor: China, and Ilari “Ziigmund” Sahamies on the Finnish version.
Adelstein didn’t last long after being voted off second. Bellande did better being voted off eighth, but it was Ziigmund who did the best ending his run in fourth place just missing out on a medal, as well as missing 33kg of lard from his waistline.
Fans of The Thirst Lounge are being offered a wonderful WSOP bonus this week, with ten $1100 tickets to the Mini-Main Event being handed out for free in a summer giveaway…
The ten lucky winners will be met in Vegas by members of the ThirstLounge10, the team of poker content streamers built up by billionaire poker aficionado Bill Perkins and which includes Kelly The_Illest Minkin, Ebony Kenney, Jeff Gross and Adam Klein.
The Thirst Lounge has been growing its popularity steadily over the past year, with industry giants partypoker recently coming on board as the official sponsor…
Coming on board is probably the most apt phrase for the Thirst Lounge streamers, the team of ten and their TwitchTV channel based in the Virgin Islands, connecting with fans and followers as they ‘navigate through the millionaire lifestyle’ while producing their unique poker content.
The WSOP giveaway for the two-day $1100 NLHE Mini Main Event that kicks off on July 1st requires you to subscribe for free to the Thirst Lounge YouTube channel and depends on it reaching 1000 public subscribers – that number close to being met already.
If you haven’t already started following the Thirst Lounge journey, here’s a little intro to the crew and what to expect from them over the coming months…
What is the Thirst Lounge 10? - YouTube
There are numerous ways to get your name in the $10k+ giveaway mix – just check out the link from the opening tweet or visit TheThirstLounge WSOP promo here.
partypoker have seized a total of over $180,000 this month as it continues to crack down on the scourge of the online game, fraudulent bot activity, with refunds being prepared for players affected by the cheats…
The figures released today show that $143,908.10 was seized from the dot.com market and €34,546.17 from its dot.eu ring-fenced market in France and Spain.
94 bot accounts closed down
As part of the site’s ongoing attempts ‘to make the site a safer, fairer place to play’, partypoker closed down a total of 94 accounts associated with the bot problem, 39 from their wider market and 55 in the Franco-Spanish area.
The site is currently processing refunds from the entire pool of seized funds, which they say will be redistributed to all affected players.
Player and poker site teamwork required
partypoker players themselves provided information in a number of cases, 15 (38.5%) closures on the dot.com platform a direct result of player suspicions being shared with the site’s security team.
In France and Spain that figure was lower, 5 accounts (9%) on the back of player reporting, but the trend in player/site partnership in the drive to rid the online world of bot cheats is an encouraging one.
Players urged to report suspicious activity
partypoker have reaffirmed their dedication to eradicating the bot accounts and are asking that players ‘continue to report all suspicious activity’ at its tables.
Kane Kalas, a former online beast who now specialises in online tournaments, has been making prop bets with two of the biggest names in the game. Both Shaun Deeb and Doyle Brunson couldn’t resist taking the action based on their faith in the skills of non other than Phil Hellmuth.
Kalas doesn’t really have the highest respect for Hellmuth’s game in the current high-takes climate and during a conversation with Deeb he ended up wagering 2.5% of his WSOP Main Event action plus 2.5% of Joe McKeehen’s action against 2.5% of Hellmuth’s.
Deeb is known to be a fan of Phil Hellmuth, and while he freely admits that Hellmuth would get toasted in a super high roller, he is fantastic at dealing with the riff raff.
It doesn’t end there though. Later on, talking about the bet on a Twitch stream, Doyle Brunson chipped in that he too is a fan of Phil Hellmuth’s ability to deal with weak amateurs.
Texas Dolly then proceeded to book what looks to be quite an interesting bet with Kalas.
If Phil Hellmuth finishes in the top 1% of the field in the World Series of Poker Main Event then Kalas will pay Brunson $50,000. Kalas will then pick ten players - any players in the world - and collect $5,000 for each one that finishes in the top 1% of the field.
After some thought Kalas posted up his selection on Twitter.
It isn’t clear where the attachment to Joe McKeehen comes from when there are plenty of other suitable candidates for this list. Timothy Adams and Christoph Vogelsang both made the shortlist but were eliminated eventually.
According to the poker twittersphere, opinion is split on just how well Phil Hellmuth is going to deal with the thousands of amateurs in the Main Event. While many are happy to label him as a donk, that’s only really in comparison to the best in the game and his own self-opinion. It’s still a massive shot for Brunson to real this one in. Deeb, on the other hand, likely has the best end of his wager.
Kim Kardashian, poker and the fact-checking website Snopes.com all converged into an interesting little story after the reality TV star was pictured wearing mirror sunglasses at the poker table…
Kardashian’s poker appearance came last year at the ‘If Only’ charity poker event in California, and the subsequent level of sarcasm and typically nasty social media nasty humour aimed at the media personality was to be expected.
However, when Snopes.com got in on the act, it showed that she was far from the only one to don reflective eyewear at the table…
Of course Phil Laak is known for his rather unusual taste in all sorts of fashion, but Snopes dug out versions of 2013 and 2017 WSOP Main Event champs Chris Moneymaker and Qui Nguyen all kitted out in the mirrored shades.
The joke, if it needs to be spelled out, is wearing mirrored glasses will allow your opponents to see your cards when you look at them – and therefore one of the dumbest thing you can do - but if it’s good enough for the legendary pros named above, then perhaps we can give Kardashian a pass on this one?
Daniel Jungleman Cates is the latest poker legend to come under the artistic eye of Mike Gorodinsky, very few pros safe from the coloured pencils that Mike wields with uncanny – some might say untalented - enthusiasm…
Just over a month ago, St Petersburg-born, double WSOP bracelet-holder Gorodinsky discovered he had an itch that needed scratching.
“I am a truly horrific artist but have recently discovered that I like drawing,” he revealed to his Twitter fans. “Specifically, I find it fun[ny] to draw poker players. Who out there wants to be turned into an obscenely unflattering caricature of themselves?”
And so a legend was born, no scrap of paper too small and no coloured crayon left unused as Mike trawled the poker world for models to use in his quest for cartoon supremacy.
The fact that without a name tag next to the caricatures you might be left struggling to tell who the subject, perhaps victim, of his art is hasn’t deterred Mike.
With drawings that wouldn’t win a prize at a pre-school art exhibition, Mike’s latest effort at capturing Jungleman Dan in his native environment is probably his best by far, but see if you can work out who this fine poker player is meant to be..!
No disrespect to Mike, of course, who is having fun with his portraits, but if you were thinking of commissioning a piece, say for a tattoo, then perhaps Chris Adamek from Sixth Element private studio in Lebanon, New Jersey is a slightly better choice!
An unnamed poker pro in Oregon is facing the seizure of $millions in cash and cryptocurrency that federal prosecutors believe is the ill-gotten gains of pirated copies of movies and TV shows…
Cash, crypto and home under threat
Federal prosecutors this week asked a judge in Eugene, Oregon to seize cash and bank accounts valued at $3,926,478.11, as well as Bitcoin and Ethereum holdings until they have concluded their case.
A home worth $336,000, bought by the player in January 2017, is also among the prosecution wishlist – officials claiming it was bought as part of the money-laundering scheme.
Federal prosecutors claim that the poker player and others, also unnamed, received ‘payments from subscribers to download movies and shows in violation of copyright laws’, according to Portland’s KOIN 6 News.
No charges, no name!
However, the 28-year old Newport, Oregon man has not been named by news sources ‘because he has not been charged with a crime’ – a factor that his lawyers claim violates his 4th and 5th Amendment rights.
"We don't generally comment on a current case, but as a matter of principle the government should not grab a person's assets and strip them of their resources unless and until proven guilty," said Rain Minns, the poker pro’s Texan lawyer.
Las Vegas poker pro?
Minns explained that her client is a professional poker player, well-known in Las Vegas poker tournaments as seen on his FB page and numerous gambling websites.
IRS Special Agent Keith Druffel, however, is claiming that the player “was found to have no verifiable legitimate income sources" despite having had $6.3 million deposited into a Stripes account.
It is alleged that the pro sold his pirated content on websites such as noobroom.com, nobroom7.com, Superchillin.com, Movietv.to and Sit2play.com – the authorities, initially Homeland Security, being tipped off about suspicious financial activity by PayPal.
Druffel claims that the pro was making an average of $500,000 per month last year, while 2017 brought him in over $2.2 million. The 2016 figure was over $1 million in revenue, and in 2014 and 2015 he is alleged to have “received on average about $400,000 a year in revenue”.
The return of partypoker’s online KO Series is almost upon us, this coming Sunday, May 12th, seeing the start of the $30million guaranteed festival, which boasts a 200+ tournament schedule…
Running until Sunday May 26th, the fortnight-long online series will see the popular PKO-only format, the 226 events spread across six different buy-in tiers – starting at $2.20 and going all the way up to the highstakes $5200 tournaments.
Ten championship events
Among the packed schedule are 9 tournaments offering $1million GTD prizepools each, with a $2million guaranteed SuperHighRoller event to bring the series to a climactic conclusion on May 26th, the ten marked down as highly-regarded ‘Championship Events’, as seen in the table below.
KO Series #02-SHR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #03-HR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #03-H: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #27-SHR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #28-HR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #28-H: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #52-SHR: $2M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #52-HR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #53-HR: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
KO Series #53-H: $1M Gtd - Championship Event [8-Max]
That final day of action will see at least $7million in play, with the elimination of rake on the bounty element of the buy-in meaning there will be more money going into each tournament’s knockout prize pool.
“I'm really looking forward to the upcoming KO Series on partypoker! So many great events make up the massive $30M in guarantees, I won't be skipping any of them."
The Canadian star added:
“The knockout format adds a different element to the game as well, and with no rake on the bounty element of PKO tournaments at partypoker, the series offers great value.”
Spin your way from $5 to $5200
If you are looking for an easy way to get yourself into the bigger buy-in tournaments, there will be special edition KO Series SPINS games that offer players seats worth up to $5,200, for a mere $5 buy-in.
There will also be the regular satellite offering, of course, and the busy festival itself will offer 6-Max, 8-Max, Turbo and Mix-Max tournaments at prices to suit every bankroll.
For more information about the KO Series, check the details out here.