Posts Tagged ‘Holding’

2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open: Day 1A in the Books with Andy Philachack, Pablo Fernandez Holding Lead

 2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open: Day 1A in the Books with Andy Philachack, Pablo Fernandez Holding Lead

The 2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Main Event is underway with an invading horde of top professionals looking to battle against the best that South Florida has to offer. With Day 1A in the books, pro player Andy Philachack is joined by Pablo Fernandez in sitting atop the standings.

The $ 3 million guaranteed event had a $ 5000 buy-in and, in a departure for most tournaments today, only featured one rebuy for the day’s starters (if eliminated on Day 1A, players could come back for two more shots on Day 1B). With 30,000 in chips and 60-minute levels (and late registration/re-entry available until Level 9), many in the poker community have chosen this tournament to “get back in the game” after the summer’s work at the World Series of Poker. This was evident from the stacked tables that greeted the players.

The four men who have previously won the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Main Event – inaugural champion Blair Hinkle, 2014 champion Dan Colman, 2015 victor Omar Zazay and defending champion Jason Koon – each held court on a singular table, taking on the field as they looked for a second chance at championship gold. Not only did the former champions of this tournament take their seats, the current World Champion, Scott Blumstein, was also on the tables for action. Add in such notables as former World Poker Tour champion Tony Sinishtaj (2017 WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown), Joe Kuether, Brian Altman, Maria Ho, Nick Schulman, Matt Stout, Ryan D’Angelo, Cate Hall, and a litany of other top pros amongst the 207 players who were there at the starting gun and the prestige of the tournament was obvious.

By the time late registration/re-entry ended after Level 9, the numbers were quite impressive. Seminole officials recorded 407 entries, with two players finishing with the exact same stack at the end of the evening. While Philachack was atop the standings for most of the day, Fernandez used a late evening double up while holding pocket Queens to sit alongside Philachack as Day 1A players take Saturday off:

1. Pablo Fernandez, 290,000
2. Andy Philachack, 290,000
3. Lahn Pham, 270,500
4. Alexander Turyansky, 263,300
5. Danny Schechter, 248,600
6. Jonathan Jaffe, 236,000
7. Oddie Dardon, 229,500
8. Nick Nieto, 226,300
9. Keven Stammen, 209,400
10. David Sands, 204,400

Add in players such as Paul Volpe (180,100 chips), John Hennigan (174,200), former World Champion Ryan Riess (159,600) and Ari Engel (145,900) and there are plenty of challenges still in contention.

Of the 407 entries on Friday, only 127 players will be ready to go with chips for Sunday. They will join up with the survivors from Day 1B of the tournament which, if it holds true for multi-Day One tournaments, should be a monstrous one. With less than $ 1 million to meeting the $ 3 million guarantee (less than 200 entries), the starting field on Saturday morning for Day 1B should eclipse the guarantee and potentially set up for a prize pool that may break the $ 6 million mark. It will be one of the things to watch for as one of the jewels of “The Big 4” – the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open final table will be contested on Tuesday as a part of “The Big 4” streaming broadcast on Twitch – continues the battle today.

Poker News Daily

PokerStars Bailing Out PKR Players Left Holding the Bag

 PokerStars Bailing Out PKR Players Left Holding the Bag

One of the worst things that can happen in the online poker world is when a poker site closes shop, leaving players looking for another room at which to play. Even worse is when the poker site goes under and takes its customers’ money with it. But that’s exactly what happened in early May when Microgaming Poker Network (MPN) skin filed for administrative protection (basically the UK’s equivalent of bankruptcy) and subsequently disappeared.

While player funds were frozen at the time, it was believed initially that customers would receive their money. MPN’s Head of Product, Alex Scott, said in a blog post, “PKR has repeatedly assured us that player funds are held in a segregated client account, for the express purpose of storing such funds, in accordance with their licence obligations in the United Kingdom and Alderney. We believe this to be true.”

He added, though, that just because the funds were in a segregated bank account does not mean that the money would make its way into players’ pockets.

Scott was prophetic. PKR is gone and so is everyone’s money.

Enter PokerStars. The world’s largest online poker room announced last week that it has reached an agreement with PKR’s court-appointed administrator in which it will step in and make PKR players whole. All PKR players, regardless of whether or not they already have a PokerStars account, will get their PKR money back, straight from PokerStars’ coffers. There are no strings attached to the deal; PKR players can immediately cash out their funds from PokerStars if they so choose.

Players will (or already did) receive an e-mail from PokerStars detailing the steps required to claim their funds. For those who already have PokerStars accounts, “it should take just a few clicks.” Those who are not PokerStars customers will need to create a Stars account, but it should still otherwise be a fairly simple process and those people will not be required to play at all on PokerStars.

Some people may look at this and think PokerStars is doing it just to get in everyone’s good graces and that’s partially correct. PokerStars readily admits it but also says the important thing is to help poker players:

We expect that some players will choose to use that bankroll to play with us and we will gain some new customers, which is certainly a good business decision on our part. However, the motivation behind this move is simple: to do what’s right.

PokerStars concluded its blog post with the following:

We’re not doing this to improve our bottom line and we are not acquiring or planning to revive the PKR software platform. We’re doing this because we think it’s the right thing to do for the poker world and to encourage others to join us in putting you, the player, first by segregating and protecting player balances from operating funds. PokerStars is proud that we’re in a position where we’re able to step in and help these players and encourage all companies in the industry to put players first.

Poker News Daily

Ari Engel Holding Off Steve O’Dwyer On CardPlayer POY, No GPI 2016 POY?

 Ari Engel Holding Off Steve O’Dwyer On CardPlayer POY, No GPI 2016 POY?

Almost two months into 2016, the battle is already brewing in the different Player of the Year races that are in the tournament poker world…or at least there is for one of them.

The champion of the Aussie Millions Main Event, Ari Engel, has been able to move to the top of the CardPlayer Magazine Player of the Year race, despite the factor that he has won less money than the man behind him in second, Steve O’Dwyer. Engel, who used the Aussie Millions victory to push his point total to 2614 points only two months into this year, has been able to take down $ 1,148,102 to this point. O’Dwyer, who admitted that last year he was chasing the POY (and came up just short) has gotten off to another great start in 2016, earning two wins in High Roller tournaments to end up with 2178 points. While that isn’t enough to eclipse Engel, O’Dwyer’s bankroll likes the sound of the $ 2,820,030 that he’s added since the start of January.

Two more players from the Aussie Millions Main Event final table are also making their appearance on the CardPlayer POY board. Tony ‘Bond_18’ Dunst used his runner up finish in that tournament to capture the third place ranking on the CardPlayer listing (1900 points), while Samantha Abernathy’s stay at the Aussie Millions not only earned her 1840 points total (the Main Event was one of two final tables she made in Melbourne) but started her year off well with almost $ 500K in winnings. Rounding out the Top Five on the CardPlayer ladder is the champion of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, Mike Watson, who received 1824 points for his championship victory.

At this point in the season, the players are very tightly packed together in the standings, making every finish very important in the rankings. Currently in sixth place is Watson’s runner up at the PCA, Anthony Gregg, who earned 1520 points for that runner up finish and another 280 points for a third place finish in an Aria High Roller tournament at the start of February. In seventh place is Chance Kornuth (1750), who is following the Steve O’Dwyer path to success on the POY rankings by racking up points in the High Roller tournaments (his last two finishes are a second place at the €25,000 High Roller at the European Poker Tour stop in Dublin and a win at the $ 25,000 Aussie Millions High Roller). Rounding out the Top Ten are Nick Maimone (1444 points), Christopher Leong (1440) and Connor Drinan (1428) in eighth through tenth places, respectively.

There is one name missing from this list who will probably drop into the middle of the Top Ten when he is inserted this week. After an outstanding run at the EPT Dublin, Poland’s Dzmitry Urbanovich – who led the 2015 POY up until the start of the World Series of Poker that he couldn’t play in because he wasn’t yet 21 – took down the Main Event title. That should score him enough points to put him ahead of Maimone, depending on the CardPlayer calculating criteria for 2016.

At this time, we would normally present the extremely accurate results from the Global Poker Index as another method for looking at the 2016 POY race. The GPI POY, which started in 2013, quickly became a recognized standard for players to judge their success for the tournament poker calendar year because results weren’t overly balanced towards big scores. In 2015 Byron Kaverman was able to call himself the GPI POY and previously Daniel Colman and Ole Schemion claimed the title (in fact, Schemion nearly claimed it two years running, finishing second to Colman in 2014).

In 2016, however, it isn’t known what is going on at the GPI. Normally a Player of the Year ranking would have been generated by this point in the season, but that isn’t the case to this mark so far this year. It might be assumed that the GPI would reflect what is on the CardPlayer rankings but, because of their intricate systems for calculations, there are normally some surprises that appear on the GPI POY that make the poker world take a look at other players who otherwise wouldn’t garner any attention.

The GPI is extremely busy trying to put together the Global Poker League and the upcoming American Poker Awards, so perhaps it has slipped through the cracks at this point. But hopefully a 2016 GPI Player of the Year race is in the works as it helps to have more than one standard in the industry, especially when it has been as well-done as the GPI has with their rankings.

Poker News Daily