Archive for May, 2017

WSOP November Nine is No More, Final Table Returns to Summer

 WSOP November Nine is No More, Final Table Returns to Summer

When it was announced a decade ago that the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event final table would be moved to November, rather than directly following the preceding days of the tournament, many jaws in the poker community dropped. To many, it was an intriguing idea, meant to allow ESPN to build up the excitement leading up to the final table, but to others, it was sacrilege. We have grown accustomed to the November Nine, though, which is why it may come as a shock to hear that it is no more. Starting this year, the Main Event final table will be contested in July following a two day break once the composition of the final table is determined.

This sudden change is the result of a deal between ESPN and Poker Central which sees Poker Central acquiring both the television broadcast and digital media rights to the World Series of Poker. ESPN will air the WSOP Main Event semi-live with a 30-minute delay, including the final table. Before this deal, the only portion of the Main Event that ESPN broadcast live was the final table in November. The rest of the Main Event was shown in weekly edited episodes leading up to the November Nine.

ESPN will also air a number of “original episodes” during the year.

“ESPN has been our home since 2002 and we’re delighted to extend the relationship into the next decade,” said Ty Stewart, the executive director of the WSOP. “Having every day live coverage of the WSOP Main Event is truly a huge commitment on behalf of ESPN and Poker Central and we look forward to delivering to our faithful audience wall-to-wall action from the outset for the very first time.”

The bulk of the WSOP Main Event will remain the same. Days 1A, 1B, and 1C will be July 8th through July 10th. The survivors of Day 1A will participate in Day 2A on July 11th; likewise, the Day 1B survivors will meet on July 11th for Day 2B, though in a separate field from those in Day 2A. Day 2C will be on July 12th. Starting July 13th, the remaining field will be unified through Day 7 on July 17th.

For the last decade, the tournament was paused at that point and then taken up again in November. No more. The November Nine is gone. Now there will be just a two-day break to allow the final table members to get some rest (and presumably do some interviews). The final table will then begin on July 20th and play down to six players. Those six will play down to three on July 21st and the champion will be determined on July 22nd.

Just like it did for the November Nine, ESPN will broadcast the entire final table semi-live. The rest of the live coverage of the Main Event will only be a few hours each day on ESPN and ESPN2.

Coverage that ESPN does not broadcast on television will be streamed by Poker Central online.

Poker News Daily

Daniel Daniyar Takes Down WPT Amsterdam, Andreas Klatt Earns “MonteDam Swing” Championship

 Daniel Daniyar Takes Down WPT Amsterdam, Andreas Klatt Earns “MonteDam Swing” Championship

The World Poker Tour has wrapped up its pre-World Series of Poker schedule with the close of action at the Holland Casino in Amsterdam. As to their WPTDeepStacks Main Event, Daniel Daniyar started the day with the second biggest stack and finished it with all the chips to take the title, while Andreas Klatt celebrated an outstanding run of poker between Monte Carlo and Amsterdam to win the “MonteDam Swing.”

As previously stated, Daniyar (1.8 million) started the day with the second biggest stack, trailing only Jan Jansma (2.365 million) on the leaderboard. They were the only two players above a million chips as Jorn Walthaus (845K), Louis Salter (735K), Jonathan Rozema (495K) and Shyngis Satubayev (430K) rounded out the final table on Saturday. From the start, Daniyar was on the offensive, starting a run that would only end with him winning the title.

Daniyar set the tone from the first hand of action, calling Rozema’s all-in and proving to be correct in the call when his K-Q was besting Rozema’s 7-5 pre-flop. There was a seven on the flop, but it was joined by a King to keep Daniyar in the lead. After an uneventful turn and river, Rozema would hit the rail in sixth. Ten minutes later, it was Walthaus’ turn to hit the exits, with Daniyar pulling off another knockout with K-Q. With Walthaus leading pre-flop with his A-8 off suit, the 10-3-5 flop looked innocent enough. After a nine came on the turn, Daniyar now had outs to a straight along with his potential to pair his paint. The river not only was paint, it was a Jack, giving Daniyar a winning straight and sending Walthaus out in fifth place.

Now with the lead, Daniyar did not take his foot off the gas. Although Salter would take down Satubayev in fourth, Daniyar dived right back into the pool in bumping off Jansma in a shocker of a hand. After doubling up both his opponents, it looked as if Daniyar would do it again when he made a bit of a questionable play. In that hand, Jansma put out a raise, Daniyar three-bet and, after Jansma moved all in, made the call. His 6♠ 3♠ shrunk up against the red Kings of Jansma, but the fates held another story. A 6-3-4 flop hit Daniyar squarely and, by the time the river brought another trey to give him a boat, Daniyar had vanquished the mighty Cowboys of Jansma, ending Jansma’s night in third place.

Everyone thought it would be a quick heads up session – Daniyar held a monstrous 6.2 million stack to Salter’s 500K – but Salter would prove to be a worthy opponent. Three double ups over a half-hour span would shoot Salter to the lead and another half-hour would put him up by a margin similar to what Daniyar started with. Daniyar would recompose himself and got back in the game, however, and with a flourish. Another half-hour of play would see Daniyar not only retake the lead after he hit a flush to best Salter’s Kings, but stunningly win the tournament.

On the penultimate hand, Salter pushed all in with a J-8 off suit and Daniyar was happy to look him up with a leading A-4. The board never presented any threats, coming down 10-2-3-K-6, to keep Daniyar in the lead, making him the first champion of the WPT to hail from Kazakhstan.

1. Daniel Daniyar, €152,600
2. Louis Salter, €106,710
3. Jan Jansma, €65,570
4. Shyngis Satubayev, €39,885
5. Jorn Walthaus, €30,800
6. Jonathan Rozema, €25,525

Along with Daniyar’s victory was the awarding of the PokerStars Championship/WPT “MonteDam Swing.” The WPT and PokerStars teamed up for a joint promotion in which players had the opportunity to win excellent prizes if they competed in both the PSC Monte Carlo and the WPT Amsterdam. Two events in Monte Carlo – the €5000 Main Event and the PokerStars National Championship – and two in Amsterdam – the WPTDeepStacks Main Event and a smaller buy in event prior to the Main – were used to compile points for the players, with the caveat that the winner had to have cashed in both Monte Carlo and Amsterdam.

After Monte Carlo, there was pretty much no reason to go on. Germany’s Andreas Klatt, who won the National Championship in Monte Carlo and cashed in the Main Event, didn’t even know there was a special competition going on when he traveled to Amsterdam for the WPT festivities. Once informed that he was in line to take the “MonteDam Swing,” Klatt made the most of it, finishing tenth in the WPTDeepStacks Main Event to earn the qualifying cash to meet the requirements and pick up the “MonteDam Swing” championship. As a reward for his efforts, Klatt earned his buy-in for the PokerStars Championship Barcelona Main Event, which will be contested later this year.

Poker News Daily

Comedian Kevin Hart to Enter 2017 Super High Roller Bowl

 Comedian Kevin Hart to Enter 2017 Super High Roller Bowl

In its previous two seasons, the Super High Roller Bowl presented by Poker Central has had its share of businesspeople (Dan Shak, Kathy Lehne, both accomplished poker players) and poker professionals (too numerous to mention), but it has never had a “celebrity” in the mix. Some might still say that bar hasn’t been crossed but, with the announcement from Poker Central that comedian Kevin Hart will be taking part in the 2017 version of the tournament, they are drawing closer.

It doesn’t seem to faze the star of Central Intelligence that he’s in for at least $ 300,000, if not more should he choose to re-enter the tournament. “I love playing high stakes poker, and there’s no better competition than at the Super High Roller Bowl – the world championship of high stakes poker,” Hart stated during the announcement of his participation. “I am looking forward to all the support and positive vibes from my fans who will be tuning in through Poker Central to watch me stomp all over the competition.”

“For the last two years, the Super High Roller Bowl has been the premier high stakes poker event in the world. The addition of Kevin Hart this year takes it to a whole other level,” said Joe Kakaty, the president of Poker Central, who joined Hart for the announcement. “Kevin’s ability to resonate with audiences across the world gives Poker Central the platform to reach future poker fans who will be getting their first taste of the action.”

The 56-player field was already replete with some of the best poker players in the world. Including the inaugural champion Brian Rast and defending champion Rainer Kempe, other players such as 2016 World Series of Poker Player of the Year Jason Mercier, 2017 Super High Roller Bowl runner-up Fedor Holz, the two winners of the $ 1 million buy-in “Big One for One Drop” at the WSOP Antonio Esfandiari and Dan Colman, the only man to cash in both the previous tournaments, Erik Seidel, the all-time leading money winner in poker Daniel Negreanu and 14-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth are all a part of the field. It will present a challenge to Hart, who’s background in poker is, to be kind, limited.

Previous to 2017, there is little to no known information that Kevin Hart even was interested in the game of poker. That was until the inaugural PokerStars Championship Bahamas in January, when Hart mysteriously showed up to play in the $ 100,000 Super High Roller tournament and stayed around to take part in the $ 5000 Main Event. After the trip to Atlantis, Hart did not take part in another event until he showed up in Monte Carlo for the PSC festival, where he once again took part in the €100,000 Super High Roller. Demonstrating that you just don’t “drop in” and excel in the world of high stakes poker, Hart has yet to cash in any tournament.

The presence of Hart has also stirred interest in the poker community, for both good and bad. While he held a press conference in Monaco alongside Negreanu to ostensibly “make poker fun again,” Hart didn’t exactly point out any examples of how he, along with PokerStars, was going to exactly do just that. On the negative side, people have pointed out how it appears that PokerStars has sponsored Hart in the events he’s played, meaning that Hart is freerolling the game and doesn’t have to take it seriously (not to mention that, in being the #1 comedian in 2016 with over $ 87 million in earnings, a $ 100,000 tournament is chicken feed for him).

Could Hart “break his duck” in the Super High Roller Bowl this year? Fans will be able to see Hart in action when the first day of the tournament is streamed live through YouTube, Twitch, and Facebook Live on May 28. The remainder of the tournament will be broadcast through Poker Central’s digital distribution network, with the tournament being taped and edited for broadcast in its entirety later in the summer. With $ 16.8 million on the line – including $ 6 million for first place – the players will be bringing their “A” game – will Hart bring his or is he the comedic relief?

Poker News Daily

World Poker Tour Expanding Operations into India, South America With New Partnerships

 World Poker Tour Expanding Operations into India, South America With New Partnerships

The World Poker Tour has, at certain points in its history, stretched their moniker as far as “world.” For a few years, the organization barely left the States of America and, if it did, it was still on the North American continent. Of late, however, the WPT has been stretching out into the international market, as demonstrated by their latest endeavors on both sides of the globe.

The WPT and India-based Adda52.com announced that they would be collaborating to expand poker in the billion-people strong country. This Asia-Pacific expansion between the two groups will be twofold, with a new tournament – the WPTDeepStacks India – as well as a brand-new honor for yearly performance in the WPT India Player of the Year award. Between both endeavors, the WPT and Adda52.com are looking to make poker even bigger in the country.

“With a burgeoning poker community in a country with a population of more than 1.3 billion, India is one of the most important territories in the global poker landscape,” added Angelica Hael, the WPT’s Vice President of Global Tour Management. “Together with our partner Adda52.com, the WPT looks forward to not only sharing the WPT experience through the expansion of WPTDeepStacks to the region, but also giving Indian players incremental value with the WPT India Player of the Year award.”

“We are excited for WPT and Adda52 to take its partnership to new heights by bringing WPTDeepStacks to one of India’s most beautiful locations, Goa,” Anuj Gupta, the founder & Chief Executive Officer of Adda52.com, added. “WPTDeepStacks India will be an exceptionally unique event since the tournament will be held onboard a floating ship. As poker’s premier mid-major tournament circuit, WPTDeepStacks is the perfect fit for the Indian poker community.”

As Gupta stated, the WPTDeepStacks India will be held from November 7-13 at the Deltin Royale Casino in Goa, India. The $ 1000 buy-in tournament will be the capstone to the other innovation produced by the partnership between the WPT and Addar52, the WPT India Player of the Year award. Along with the DeepStacks tournament, two other events in India will be held to find the best player in the country.

From July 20-24, the Deltin Poker Tour Goa will hold a $ 540 Main Event, with the people who cash in the tournament earning all-important points towards the WPT India POY. From September 6-11, there will be another $ 540 tournament for the Deltin Poker Tour Goa where players can earn more points. Along with the November WPT DeepStacks tournament, the player who earns the most points through the three tournaments will win the WPT India Player of the Year award.

Danny McDonagh, the WPT Live Events Specialist, commented, “Alongside the outstanding team at Adda52.com, the World Poker Tour is proud to introduce a dedicated WPT India Player of the Year award to showcase the region’s top talent and to bring WPTDeepStacks to this flourishing market.” In making this statement, McDonagh also brought up the prizes for those who vie for this title. The eventual champion will be named Player of the Year and earn a $ 5000 credit for WPT events and Deltin tournaments during Season XVII of the WPT.

Alongside their stretch into the Asia-Pacific market, the WPT is also looking southward for more poker action. Earlier this week the WPT announced that they had paired with Enjoy Punta del Este in Uruguay to bring a televised poker event to the South American country. As a part of their Season XVI schedule, the new WPTDeepStacks Uruguay Main Event (with two opening day flights and a $ 1500 buy in) will play from November 1-5 this fall.

“With its entry into South America, the World Poker Tour is now on its fifth continent,” said Adam Pliska, the Chief Executive Officer of the WPT, in announcing the new stop. “As the WPT continues its global expansion, we look forward to showcasing the abundance of poker talent across the globe and bringing the game to new audiences worldwide, starting with Enjoy Punta del Este in Uruguay.”

“It is an honor that a company as prestigious as the World Poker Tour has chosen Enjoy Punta del Este to co-host the tour’s first televised event in South America,” said Sebastián Truffello, the General Manager of Enjoy Punta del Este. “It is no secret that the WPT features the best televised poker tournaments in the world, and it is our great pleasure to partner with the WPT for this extraordinary event. We have no doubt that the combination of Enjoy’s expertise and infrastructure, plus the incredible experience of participating in a world-class WPT televised tournament, will result in an incredible event for all of those who attend.”

It seems that the WPTDeepStacks event won’t be the only tournament going on around that time. Although it has yet to be finalized, there is a full schedule of preliminary events that will surround the WPT tournament in Punta del Este, promising plenty of poker action for all. For those that don’t do so well on the tables, there is plenty of beaches and entertainment to take the mind off the losses – at least for a bit.

The WPT – the organization where “world” was once a funny joke – is truly striving to make it an integral part of its being. With the new events spanning the globe in India and South America, the reach of the WPT seems to only become greater.

Poker News Daily

WSOP Alters “Calling Clock” Rule

 WSOP Alters “Calling Clock” Rule

The World Series of Poker has implemented a new rule for 2017 regarding how things will be handled when a player wants to “call clock” on an opponent. For those of you who are new to poker, “calling clock” or “calling the clock” is a formal process by which a player asks that a floor person force another player to make a decision on a hand if that player has taken too long to act.

The tricky part about calling clock has always been that it is very subjective. Who is to say, exactly, if a person is taking too long or is stalling? In one hand, protracted thought may be appropriate while it is not in another. Maybe someone who looks like they are stalling is really thinking hard. And how much time should be given by the floor?

The changes are not really much more concrete than they were, but they do seem to take into account tournament situations and give the floor leeway.

Previously, the rule gave all players a “reasonable amount of time,” which was defined as at least two minutes, to act in a hand. If the clock is called, the player in question gets one minute more to act, the final ten seconds of which are counted down by the floor person. If the player still hasn’t acted, his hand is dead. The floor person could also shorten the time if it is deemed that the player is intentionally stalling.

Here is the new rule:

Once a reasonable amount of time has passed and a clock is called, Floor People, in their sole discretion, may give the participant an additional 0 up to 30 seconds to make a decision. If action has not been taken when prompted by the Floor Person, there will be a 10-second countdown followed by a declaration or stopwatch alarm. If a participant has not acted before the declaration or alarm sounds, the hand will be dead.  Rio, in its sole and absolute discretion, reserves the right, at any time, to invoke a clock or speed up the amount of time allotted for a clock. Any participant intentionally stalling the progress of the game or unnecessarily calling the clock will incur a penalty in accordance with Rules 40, 113, and 114.

As you can see, there is no two minute minimum applied to the “reasonable amount of time.” Additionally, the clock time is shortened from one minute to anywhere from zero to thirty seconds plus a ten second countdown.

The new rule also gives the Rio (and by extension, the floor person), the flexibility to call clock without a player asking for it.

One point of interest from the WSOP’s notes about the new rule is that the floor person can also decide to not start a clock on a player, even if someone at the table asked for one. There are plenty of situations where tanking for several minutes should be permitted and if an impatient player wants clock called, the floor can easily deny the request, ruling that the hand is a crucial one in a key spot in the tournament, so those involved should be granted all the time they need.

Poker News Daily



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