Posts Tagged ‘Begins’

WPT Season XVI Begins, WPT Beijing Final Table Set

 WPT Season XVI Begins, WPT Beijing Final Table Set

Season XV of the World Poker Tour (WPT) just finished, but there is no rest for WPT staffers, as Season XVI has already begun. Beijing serves as the host of the kickoff event for the Tour’s sixteenth season, the first time an event on the “main” tour has even been held in China. Miraculously, the tournament, hosted by NUO Hotel Beijing, is a single-entry event. It is a true freezeout, unlike most WPT events nowadays, which allow re-entries into different starting flights. Registration was open until the beginning of Level 5, but the field was also capped at 400 players, so it was possible that registration was cut off early. It looks like the timing worked out, as just before the end of Level 5, the cap was nearly hit and the end registration numbers show that the field is 400 players strong.

With the entry limit hit, the total prize pool is set at CNY 9,600,000 (about USD $ 1,393,324). Payouts will go down to 50th place with the winner receiving CNY 2,063,454 (about USD $ 299,485).

Leading the charge into the final table is Chen Yanhan. And by “leading the charge,” I mean sprinting to the final table miles ahead of everyone else. Chen had 6.310 million chips, more than the other five players have COMBINED. The closest competitor is Zhang Wenbin, nearly five million chips behind.

Chen got to where he is through very aggressive play, swinging his big stack around very effectively. On many occasions late in the day, he raised over the top of players after they put in a large bets, forcing folds and scooping up pots without the need for a showdown.

For example, with seven players remaining, Chen called a 115,000 pre-flop raise by Tan Yancheng. On the flop of J-5-7, the two players checked (yes, the aggressiveness is coming). When a 2 was dealt on the turn, Chen led out for 145,000 and Tan called. Then, with a 7 on the river, Chen bet 450,000, Tan raised to 1 million chips, and Chen then decided to move all-in. Tan cut his losses and folded, falling down to about a million chips while Chen grew his lead significantly.

As the tournament is in China, the timing is going to be a bit nutty for poker fans in the rest of the world who would like to follow the action. The final table will commence at noon in Beijing on Wednesday, April 19th. Beijing is exactly half a day ahead of the eastern time zone in the United States, so the final table start is at midnight ET. Further conversions: 9:00pm in Las Vegas, 5:00am in London.

2017 World Poker Tour Beijing Final Table Chip Counts

1.    Chen Yanhan  –  6,310,000
2.    Zhang Wenbin  –  1,410,000
3.    Tan Yancheng  –  1,300,000
4.    Chen Ke  –  1,255,000
5.    Lu Yingqi  –  875,000
6.    Bryan Huang  –  820,000

Poker News Daily

WPT Season XVI Begins, WPT Beijing Final Table Set

 WPT Season XVI Begins, WPT Beijing Final Table Set

Season XV of the World Poker Tour (WPT) just finished, but there is no rest for WPT staffers, as Season XVI has already begun. Beijing serves as the host of the kickoff event for the Tour’s sixteenth season, the first time an event on the “main” tour has even been held in China. Miraculously, the tournament, hosted by NUO Hotel Beijing, is a single-entry event. It is a true freezeout, unlike most WPT events nowadays, which allow re-entries into different starting flights. Registration was open until the beginning of Level 5, but the field was also capped at 400 players, so it was possible that registration was cut off early. It looks like the timing worked out, as just before the end of Level 5, the cap was nearly hit and the end registration numbers show that the field is 400 players strong.

With the entry limit hit, the total prize pool is set at CNY 9,600,000 (about USD $ 1,393,324). Payouts will go down to 50th place with the winner receiving CNY 2,063,454 (about USD $ 299,485).

Leading the charge into the final table is Chen Yanbin. And by “leading the charge,” I mean sprinting to the final table miles ahead of everyone else. Chen had 6.310 million chips, more than the other five players have COMBINED. The closest competitor is Zhang Wenbin, nearly five million chips behind.

Chen got to where he is through very aggressive play, swinging his big stack around very effectively. On many occasions late in the day, he raised over the top of players after they put in a large bets, forcing folds and scooping up pots without the need for a showdown.

For example, with seven players remaining, Chen called a 115,000 pre-flop raise by Tan Yancheng. On the flop of J-5-7, the two players checked (yes, the aggressiveness is coming). When a 2 was dealt on the turn, Chen led out for 145,000 and Tan called. Then, with a 7 on the river, Chen bet 450,000, Tan raised to 1 million chips, and Chen then decided to move all-in. Tan cut his losses and folded, falling down to about a million chips while Chen grew his lead significantly.

As the tournament is in China, the timing is going to be a bit nutty for poker fans in the rest of the world who would like to follow the action. The final table will commence at noon in Beijing on Wednesday, April 19th. Beijing is exactly half a day ahead of the eastern time zone in the United States, so the final table start is at midnight ET. Further conversions: 9:00pm in Las Vegas, 5:00am in London.

2017 World Poker Tour Beijing Final Table Chip Counts

1.    Chen Yanbin  –  6,310,000
2.    Zhang Wenbin  –  1,410,000
3.    Tan Yancheng  –  1,300,000
4.    Chen Ke  –  1,255,000
5.    Lu Yingqi  –  875,000
6.    Bryan Huang  –  820,000

Poker News Daily

Claims Process for Lost Absolute Poker Funds Begins

 Claims Process for Lost Absolute Poker Funds Begins

Now that the claims process for players’ lost Full Tilt Poker funds is just about over, it’s time for – SURPRISE! – Absolute Poker claims. Seriously (or Cereusly…get it?). Absolute Poker.

Full Tilt Poker naturally got all the headlines after Black Friday as it was an extremely high profile online poker room founded by famous poker players and customers had well over $ 100 million dollars frozen. Absolute Poker was well known in the poker community – it was one of the higher profile U.S.-facing sites and famously was one of two (along with UltimateBet) that had a superuser scandal – but it kind of just disappeared. It may have been that it no longer had the big name pros attached to it, it may have been that after the superuser scandal, people weren’t surprised by more bullshit. Absolute Poker disappeared and that was that. Nobody really thought much of it, aside from players who lost thousands.

And now, suddenly, it looks like former customers of Absolute may be able to get their money back. But where did the money come from? It’s not like Absolute’s executives all of a sudden sat down with the U.S. Department of Justice and cut a check.

Apparently, money that is left over from the Full Tilt Poker claims process will now be used to reimburse Absolute Poker players. From a press release issued by the U.S. Attorney’s Office Southern District of New York:

As alleged in the operative forfeiture complaints and indictments in this case, the three online poker companies, including Absolute Poker, and their principals, conspired with one another, and others, such as payment processors who worked with multiple poker companies, to carry out the offense conduct that served as the basis for the forfeiture of the Forfeited Poker Funds.

Additionally, the Department of Justice has concluded that players of Absolute Poker who were unable to recover their funds from Absolute Poker are similarly situated to the eligible victims of Full Tilt Poker, in that Absolute Poker, like Full Tilt Poker, did not maintain funds sufficient to repay all of its players.

Accordingly, remaining Forfeited Poker Funds will be used to fund a claims process for eligible Absolute Poker victims.

The process for players to claim the funds should be very similar to that of Full Tilt Poker. Former Absolute customers can go to the site the Garden City Group has setup, AbsolutePokerClaims.com, and click on the link to file a petition. Customers then either need a petition number and control number from an e-mail sent by the GCG or, if that e-mail never arrived, the info needed is player ID, last name, and Absolute Poker e-mail address.

As far as how much money players should expect, the GCG says:

It has been determined that the calculation formula to be used for the Petition for Remission process will be based on players’ last known account balance with Absolute Poker (the “Account Balance”). Note that an alternative calculation methodology will be applied to players who have been designated as “Affiliates” of Absolute Poker and to professional players. Account balances from online poker sites other than Absolute Poker are not included in this remission process. Petitioners must also meet all other requirements outlined in 28 C.F.R. § 9.8 to be considered eligible for remission.

If the forfeited funds available for distribution equal or exceed the aggregate Account Balances for all eligible Petitioners, each eligible Petitioner with an approved claim will receive the entirety of his or her Account Balance or approved loss amount. If the aggregate Account Balances for all eligible Petitioners exceed the funds available for distribution, payments shall be made to eligible Petitioners on a pro rata basis.

Poker News Daily

World Poker Tour Begins Dash to End Season XV with WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown

 World Poker Tour Begins Dash to End Season XV with WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown

Looking to finish off the Season XV schedule with a bang, the World Poker Tour will be setting up shop in the sunny state of Florida for the next 10 days. Kicking off the trio of events to finish this year’s WPT roster of events will be tomorrow’s start of the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown.

Now in its second year, the change for the WPT to playing its final events at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, FL, seems to have worked out well. When it was held last year, the WPT scheduled three events – a $ 3500 buy in tournament (the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown), a $ 10,000 tournament (the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Finale) and a $ 15,000 restricted access event (the inaugural WPT Tournament of Champions) – that were all conducted on the grounds in Hollywood. For the most part, the WPT was satisfied with the numbers for two of the events and are looking to pick up the numbers on the third.

The Showdown was quite popular with the players, with 1222 entries being received for the “re-entry” tournament (eventually won by Justin Young over Garrett Greer). Even the Finale went well, with 342 players ponying up the $ 10K to be a part of the action (and seeing David ‘Chino’ Rheem emerge as champion). Perhaps the only disappointing spot on the season closer was the inaugural Tournament of Champions, but that could have been more from the format than the lack of players who wanted to take part.

The Tournament of Champions replaced the WPT World Championship during last year’s finale in Florida. Only players who had previously won a WPT Main Tour event (not a National or Regional title) were eligible to take part in the tournament. The players who had won on the tour over the previous year had part of their prize from winning their event pulled to guarantee them access to the tournament, but past champions had to put up $ 15,000 to play in the tournament. This resulted in a rather paltry 64 players that took part in the TOC, with 2015 WPT Amsterdam champion Farid Yachou becoming the first ever champion of the WPT TOC.

There is a reason that the word “paltry” is used along with the inaugural WPT TOC. The 64 players that attended the tournament in 2016 were from the 227 previous champions that have been crowned in the history of the WPT Main Tour. The 17 players (plus two more from the Seminole Hard Rock events preceding the TOC) who have won on the WPT this season are guaranteed entry and bring the total potential number of participants to 242 (Darren Elias was a prior WPT Champions’ Club member and Sam Panzica won two tournaments during the season), but who will show up from the Champions’ Club to take them on? The WPT is trying to bring in some more former champions for the tournament by spicing up the prize package.

The tournament sponsor, Monster Headphones, has not only added $ 100,000 to the prize pool but also has put up a 2018 Audi S5 Coupe for the eventual champion, a high-end sports car that starts at $ 41,000. This is in addition to other “spoils of war” such as a custom-made poker table from BBO Poker Tables, custom fit sunglasses from Maui Jim, and a Hublot King Power Unico Carbon and Red watch, among other items.

The tournament will once again feature a different structure than the usual WPT events. Starting with six-handed tables, a 30-second shot clock will also be employed, which basically means what it says – players have 30 seconds to make their decisions on each street. If a player needs more time, they are given five 30-second extensions that they can use as they see fit (one at a time or all five at once) up to the final table. At the final table, the players will be reset with four 30-second extensions each.

The Showdown and the Finale are also the last chances players have to earn points towards the WPT Player of the Year. With those two events remaining, it is a neck and neck battle between Benjamin Zamani (2500 points), who has led for virtually the entire season, and two-time WPT champion Panzica (2450 points). If those two should falter, lurking in the background is WPT Montreal champion, WPT announcer and Poker Hall of Famer Mike Sexton (2100), who could be itching to be a spoiler in the competition between Zamani and Panzica. Elias (1650 points) and WPT L. A. Poker Classic champion Daniel Strelitz (1450) round out the Top Five, but they would need astronomically good runs in Florida to get into the race (like winning both the Showdown and the Finale).

The next 10 days will be a poker junkie’s dream and, after all the chips have been tossed and cards ruffed, the doors on Season XV of the World Poker Tour. The only question remaining is who will be the big winners? We’ll look to answer those questions starting tomorrow with the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown.

Poker News Daily

2017 PokerStars Championship Bahamas: Main Event Begins, Koon Wins $100,000 Super High Roller

 2017 PokerStars Championship Bahamas: Main Event Begins, Koon Wins $100,000 Super High Roller

The Main Event of the inaugural PokerStars Championship stop is underway; Sunday saw the completion of Day 1A of the PokerStars Championship Bahamas Main Event while Day 1B is currently running at Atlantis Paradise Island. A total of 229 players showed up for the first starting flight of the formerly named PokerStars Caribbean Adventure and James Martyn emerged as the leader of the 112 surviving players, finishing the night with 197,400 chips.

Martyn really got going in the final level of Sunday’s action, Level 8. With only 46,500 chips near the start of the level, he confidently raised to 1,400 chips pre-flop with pocket Aces and had to be thrilled to see Andrey Zaichenko re-raise him to 4,500. Action folded back around to Martyn, who four-bet to 13,500. Zaichenko then moved all-in and obviously Martyn snap-called, his Aces destroying Zaichenko’s K-T (oops). A Ten did flop, but Zaichenko got no more help and doubled-up Martyn, whose stack increased to 93,000.

That is the biggest update we have on Martyn’s rise to the top, but clearly he had one heck of a Level 8, as from there, he added more than 100,000 additional chips.

Also moving on to Day 2 are such names as Gaelle Baumann, Daniel Colman, Igor Kurganov, Jason Mercier, Justin Bonomo, Isaac Haxton, and 2016 GPI and Cardplayer Player of the Year David Peters.

Not returning on Tuesday is one of the hottest actors and comedians on the planet, Kevin Hart. After needing to shove his short stack (that is not a joke about his height) with a lowly Deuce-Six, he told the PokerNews crew, “Tell them that I went down swinging.”

Folks, Kevin Hart fought valiantly and went down swinging.

Another group of Championship hopefuls is still playing on Day 1B; we’ll see how things pan out tomorrow.

2017 PokerStars Championship Bahamas – Day 1A Chip Leaders

1.    James Martyn – 197,400
2.    Brad Marsh – 173,200
3.    Andre Crooks – 160,400
4.    Rodrigo Cordoba – 156,400
5.    Mikko Turtiainen – 155,100
6.    Alan Schein – 140,100
7.    Daniel Colman – 136,100
8.    Igor Kurganov – 121,000
9.    Adrian Mateos – 120,900
10.    Gaelle Baumann – 119,200

Also on Sunday, Jason Koon won the $ 100,000 Super High Roller event at the PokerStars Championship Bahamas, beating a field of 54 to win $ 1,650,300, the largest prize of his live tournament career. The final table was absolutely stacked. The chip leader was Charlie Carrel, who had over $ 1 million in winnings from November through December, Daniel Colman, Daniel Dvoress, Connor Drinan, Byron Kaverman, and Bryn Kenney. Then again, I suppose the strength of the final table is to be expected in a High Roller, as there aren’t typically many low-stakes amateurs in these events.

According to PokerNews, Carrel went into heads-up with a 2-to-1 chip lead, but Koon made a huge play on the river of a hand with the board reading K-K-6-5-9, the last four cards all diamonds. He had check-raised the flop, bet large on the turn, and moved all-in on the river, forcing Carrel to fold. He didn’t reveal what he had, but he said afterward that he was “repping at worst a very good king.”

From there, Koon didn’t look back and took down the title.

Poker News Daily



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