Posts Tagged ‘Roller’

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

PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Wins 100K Euro Super High Roller as Main Event Opens Action

 PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Wins 100K Euro Super High Roller as Main Event Opens Action

Riding the strength of his start of day chip lead, Bryn Kenney continued to be the “Master of the High Rollers” as he captured the 100,000 Euro Super High Roller at the PokerStars Championships Monte Carlo on Saturday. As Kenney added over 1.7 million more Euros to his bankroll for 2017, the 5000 Euro Main Event opened its action.

With nine men in the mix and only eight paying spots, someone was leaving the Super High Roller tournament disappointed. That man would turn out to be Isaac Haxton, who got a bit short and shoved with Big Chick from the small blind. The big blind, David Peters, woke up with pocket Jacks and made the call, looking to eliminate a dangerous player from the event. There was a Queen as the dealer fanned the flop, but there was also a Jack to keep Peters in the lead with a flopped set. After the turn failed to bring anything useful for Haxton, he was out of the tournament in ninth place for the big goose egg (zero Euros).

Everyone left at the table was guaranteed a 237,950 Euro payday and those men set about determining just who would get what piece of it. Viacheslav Buldygin, who came into the final table with the second largest chip stack, went on a rampage at this point in knocking out Sam Greenwood in eighth and Martin Kabrhel in seventh to take the lead from Kenney. Kenney, for his part, had been quiet up to this point, but made himself known in chopping a massive chunk of chips from Buldygin after rivering two pair, Kings up, against Buldygin’s pocket Aces.

Now it was Kenney’s turn to pound the opposition and he did just that. Kenney bumped off Steffen Sontheimer in sixth place and shot down Ole Schemion in fifth to extend his lead. After he eliminated Peters from the tournament in fourth place with his Queens standing over Peters’ A-7, he had taken three straight opponents down and held a monstrous lead. Even after Buldygin matched his feat in eliminating three players by taking out Daniel Dvoress, Buldygin still was at a 5-1 chip disadvantage as heads up play began.

The twosome would shuffle some chips back and forth between each other before they paused the action to discuss a deal. The right numbers couldn’t be agreed on by the two gentlemen and, with that, they decided to play on. On the final hand, the aggressive Kenney – he had been punishing his short-stacked tablemates with all-in moves to force them to make decisions for their tournament lives all afternoon – once again moved all in with pocket deuces and, with a suited K-Q, Buldygin made his stand. That stand lasted all of the flop when a deuce landed to give Kenney a set. When the turn blanked, Buldygin was drawing dead and the championship was Kenney’s to celebrate.

1. Bryn Kenney, 1,784,500 Euros
2. Viacheslav Buldygin, 1,290,800
3. Daniel Dvoress, 832,800
4. David Peters, 630,600
5. Ole Schemion, 487,715
6. Steffen Sontheimer, 380,700
7. Martin Kabrhel, 303,350
8. Sam Greenwood, 237,950

The PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo Main Event also saw Day 1A action on Saturday with some of the same players from the Super High Roller jumping over to take part in the action. Ole Schemion used part of the proceeds from the Super High Roller to buy into the Main Event and he did quite well, finishing the day with 144,900 in chips to sit in seventh place. Haxton also made the jump, not finishing quite as well on the day as Schemion but in the game with 65,700 in chips.

The story of the day was Jeffrey Hakim, who seemed to draw the chips in like a vacuum. In a five-way pot, Hakim would flop the ten-high nut straight but have to face down the potential of an opponent catching a bigger straight or a flush with his suited J-9. Once the board came up blanks, Hakim stacked roughly 180K in chips but the best was yet to come. During the last level of the night, Hakim flopped quad fours and found a guppy who wanted to stick around. Hakim would check-raise the flop only to have said guppy four-bet the action, which Hakim was happy to call. On a blank turn, the guppy shoved his stack with a draw and Hakim called to deliver the bad news. The resulting chips pushed Hakim over the 300K mark, the only player to reach that point.

1. Jeffrey Hakim, 305,300
2. Stefan Shillhabel, 203,000
3. Manig Loeser, 195,700
4. Michel Pereira Marques, 168,900
5. Pascal Hartmann, 151,200
6. Igor Yaroshevskyy, 147,500
7. Ole Schemion, 144,900
8. Dmytro Shuvanov, 140,000
9. Bradley Marsh, 130,000
10. Vicente Delgado, 130,000

Although these players will be back on Monday to continue the festivities, a plethora of top pros won’t. Anthony Spinella, Freddy Deeb and Team PokerStars Pros Vanessa Selbst and Jake Cody all found the rail during Saturday’s action. While Day 1B is on Sunday at noon, the tournament is a freezeout and the players cannot rebuy.

Poker News Daily

PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Leads Super High Roller, Main Event Begins Saturday

 PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo: Bryn Kenney Leads Super High Roller, Main Event Begins Saturday

The sun has set on the beautiful Mediterranean coastline of Monte Carlo for another evening and, with the coming of night, another day is in the books for the PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo. In the 100,000 Euro Super High Roller, Bryn Kenney heads the list of the final nine players while the remainder of those in Monaco for business prepare for the start of the Main Event on Saturday.

With 38 players remaining at the start of the day, four more entries were received to bring the final numbers of the Super High Roller to 61 total entries. The four players – Alexander Uskov, Nick Petrangelo, Leon Tsoukernik and Dietrich Fast – had all busted out previously on Thursday, but they took advantage of the re-entry option to dive back in on Friday (and keep the number of singular entries to 47). Even with another 300K in chips to go to battle with, none of the re-entries from the start of action on Friday would be around by mid-afternoon.

Most of the eyes in the Monte Carlo Casino’s poker room were glued to actor/comedian Kevin Hart at the start of action. Hart, who participated in the first-ever PokerStars Championship offering in the Bahamas and made Day Two of the Super High Roller, was in much better shape as he started the Monte Carlo Day Two. Alas, Hart was unable to make his 396,000 do any work for him as he demonstrated a bit of amateur play on the hand that broke him.

After limping into the pot, Hart saw Byron Kaverman move all in and called off the remainder of his stack. Hart was in the lead with his pocket sevens over Kaverman’s A-4, but “conventional play” would have dictated that Hart would have pushed with his middle pair rather than call off his chips. Regardless, Hart was all in and at risk as Kaverman was rewarded with two Aces on the flop to take the lead. Hart struck back, however, when a seven came on the turn to magically thrust him back in front with a boat. Just as quickly, a four came on the river to give Kaverman the most unlikely of full houses, Aces over fours, to top Hart’s turned full house and send the star of Central Intelligence back to the set with no payday.

Although tournament officials would have liked to have seen the money bubble pop (eight players taking home some cash), they would have to settle for coming up just short. Nine players will come back on Saturday to first determine who will get paid (it isn’t looking good for David Peters, on the short stack with 800K in chips) and then who will walk off with the top prize of 1,784,500 Euros. As it looks right now, Kenney is in the catbird’s seat for that potential payoff.

1. Bryn Kenney, 3.37 million
2. Viacheslav Buldygin, 2.975 million
3. Steffen Sontheimer, 1.91 million
4. Martin Kabrhel, 1.63 million
5. Isaac Haxton, 1.26 million
6. Ole Schemion, 1.25 million
7. Sam Greenwood, 1.15 million
8. Daniel Dvoress, 950,000
9. David Peters, 800,000

To say that Kenney has made a living off High Roller tournaments might be the understatement of 2017 (and we’re not even halfway through the year). Of his 16 cashes in tournament poker this year, 12 of them have come in tournaments with a buy-in higher than $ 25,000 and six have been in the Aria High Roller series. Eight of those cashes have been for six figures, with the highest being Kenney’s win at the PSC Bahamas $ 50,000 High Roller (just under a million at $ 969,075).

When the tournament restarts on Saturday, one man is going to be pissed because he will receive nothing for three days of work. The remainder of the final table will receive six-figure paydays and the champion walks off with 1.7 million-plus Euros, not a bad way to start the Monte Carlo leg of the PokerStars Championships.

While these nine men do their work tomorrow, the first day of the Main Event will open for action. The 5000-Euro tournament, when it was under the auspices of the European Poker Tour, marked the end of the European tournament season and awarded the Grand Final trophy to its victor. Now, the Monte Carlo stop is simply another leg in a tournament poker season, so expecting it to bring in the 1098 entries that came out for the 2016 version might be asking too much.

PokerStars officials are expecting better attendance than the last two PSC events in Panama (366 entries) and Macau (536), but it will push the envelope to reach the 738 entries of the PSC Bahamas. At noon local time (6AM East Coast), we’ll get our first indications of just how big the PokerStars Championship Monte Carlo might be.

Poker News Daily

ARIA Names Group of Players for 2017 Super High Roller Bowl

 ARIA Names Group of Players for 2017 Super High Roller Bowl

Buoyed by the attention – for better or worse – already garnered from previous events associated with it, the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl is ramping up to be a hotly contested battle this May. After choosing 35 players through a blind draw, the host casino ARIA in Las Vegas (the cohost of the tournament with the streaming network Poker Central) now has hand-picked 20 more players to join the field, leaving one more spot open for speculation.

Originally the tournament was to be set at 50 players, but the throng of potential contestants that flooded the ARIA cages with their deposits for the $ 300,000 buy in tournament surprised and stunned both the casino and its broadcast partner. In total 54 players showed support for the tournament, forcing ARIA and Poker Central into a controversial decision to determine the field:  a blind lottery draw that saw 35 names chosen from those who had put their money up. The remaining 15 slots were bestowed to ARIA for dispensing at their pleasure.

This was only the start of the controversy around the tournament, however. The runner up in the 2016 tournament, Fedor Holz, remarked on Twitter about his displeasure with how the selections were being handled. Justin Bonomo took Holz on, questioning Holz’s displeasure as he gets to play in a rake-free tournament for a large amount of money and that his complaints were misguided. Doug Polk took Holz’s side in the discussion, stating that it wasn’t right that ARIA had collected the deposits, then changed the rules on the players after the fact. The lively debate simmered for a bit before all sides calmed without a settlement.

While this was going on, ARIA and Poker Central changed the rules again. Instead of capping the field at 50 players (leaving an odd man out for seven-player tables), they decided to up the field size to 56 players (making for a nice round eight tables to start the tournament). Instead of opening up those six seats to players on the standby list, however, ARIA took them on to bring their total allotment to 21 seats in the now 56 player event. Additionally, ARIA and Poker Central took the route of declaring that the 2018 event would also be 56 players.

Not expected to announce players until closer to the event’s start date on May 28, ARIA instead has chosen to strike while the iron is hot. Earlier this week, ARIA announced 20 of the 21 players they had chosen to play in the tournament. The resulting list is a hodgepodge of businessmen and professional poker players that may or may not have already put a deposit down on a seat for the tournament previously.

Here’s a list of the 19 men and one woman chosen by ARIA to enter the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl:

Bill Klein
Bill Perkins
Bobby Baldwin
Cary Katz
Dan Colman
Dan Shak
Dan Smith
Daniel Negreanu
Dan Perper
Giuseppe Iadisernia
Jason Koon
Jason Mercier
John Morgan
Justin Bonomo
Lauren Roberts
Leon Tsoukernik
Phil Hellmuth
Talal Shakerchi
Antanas “Tony G” Guoga
Zach Hyman

There are some intriguing choices among these players. It is thought that Hellmuth had not put an entry into the previous 54 players and Guoga, who has been serving as a representative of Lithuania’s contingent in the European Parliament (the body that serves as the European Union’s legislature), stated in 2014 that he may play in charity events but he was “done” professionally. Finally, there is Roberts, the lone female player in the group (Kathy Lehne was the only female in the 2016 event), who has a limited Hendon Mob resume and is more known as a “equities and derivatives” trader. Then there’s Iadisernia, who has an interesting history in horse racing but not much experience on the felt.

With this list named, there is still one slot that ARIA is holding that hasn’t been filled. It is thought that ARIA is looking for a high-profile celebrity to take that seat, but they haven’t tipped their hand as to who is under consideration. That selection will probably not be named until much closer to the start of the tournament, indicating that more controversy may still be in the works.

The 2017 Super High Roller Bowl presented by Poker Central and ARIA will be run from May 28-June 1. The $ 300,000 tournament will feature a $ 16.8 million prize pool and pay out a $ 6 million payday to the eventual champion. Since Poker Central discontinued its television outlet, there is no word on whether the tournament will be broadcast on television or not (the 2016 event was broadcast on CBS Sports Network). It will be streamed on Poker Central’s Twitch page, however.

Poker News Daily

ARIA and Poker Central Expand 2017 Super High Roller Bowl Field to 56

 ARIA and Poker Central Expand 2017 Super High Roller Bowl Field to 56

Noting that their numbers would make for a complication, the streaming poker channel Poker Central and ARIA in Las Vegas have expanded the field for the 2017 Super High Roller Bowl to a nice round 56 players.

“Based on the success of last year’s Super High Roller Bowl and the overwhelming interest in this year’s event, ARIA believed it was in our best interest to increase the size of the event by six players.” ARIA’s Director of Poker Operations Sean McCormack stated in a press release from Poker Central. The increase in the number corrects what was going to be a bit of a problem for the 50-player field in that, with seven player tables, there was going to be an odd table that started eight handed. With the increase of six players, that makes for eight, seven-handed tables.

With the increase in the number of players, there also comes an increase in the prize pool for the tournament. The previously stated $ 5 million first place prize (and, at $ 300,000 a pop, the $ 15 million prize pool) will increase the payout for the eventual champion to $ 6 million (from a $ 16.8 million prize pool). “These additions will give more players a chance to play in the best event of the year and play for an even bigger prize pool. Bigger is always better and the increase in prize pool and first place payout, along with the enormous prestige of the Super High Roller Bowl, will be welcomed by the players,” said McCormack.

Due to the success of the event – players flocked to the cage in 2016 to put their money down and, in 2017, 54 players put up the reserve for their buy in – both Poker Central and ARIA thought it would be a good idea to continue at this size moving forward. “Because of the overwhelming interest this year, ARIA’s intention moving forward will be to approach next year with a tentative field size of 56 players,” McCormack announced. “This will make for a better event and give ARIA more flexibility to make sure a wide range of players are involved in next year’s Super High Roller Bowl.”

The issue that most poker fans might have will be in how those six seats are going to be handled. ARIA, as the host casino for the tournament, had been allotted 15 of the 50 seats for their “high roller” guests (not necessarily professionals). The six seats added will also be dispersed by ARIA, giving them 21 of the 56 players at the table. This could be problematic due to the number of top professionals that have been excluded to this point.

As stated previously, 54 professional poker players had at the minimum laid down their reserve for a seat at the 2017 tournament, forcing ARIA and Poker Central into a decision. They could stick with their “first come, first served” format that usually is the norm for casino decisions, but the two entities instead chose a different path. Utilizing a “lottery” draw system, ARIA and Poker Central chose 35 random players to take part in the tournament, with the leftover 15 players (at that time) to be chosen by ARIA.

The drafted roster of 35 featured several notable top pros (including defending champion Rainer Kempe, inaugural champion Brian Rast and the only man who has cashed in both previous versions of the Super High Roller Bowl, Erik Seidel), there were some names that were left off the list. Although he hosted the lottery draft and has close ties with Poker Central, Daniel Negreanu was not one of the 35 players chosen in the lottery. Also left off the board were such players as the defending Player of the Year at the World Series of Poker Jason Mercier, the most recent champion of the $ 1 million buy-in WSOPBig One for One DropDan Colman and high roller regulars such as Dan Shak, Nick Petrangelo and Mike Watson. Phil Hellmuth and Phil Ivey were not a part of the field either, but neither had put their money down (among the 54 players) to be considered eligible for the lottery drawing.

The 2017 Super High Roller Bowl will be held between May 28-30 at ARIA in Las Vegas and we will probably see many of the names that, at this point, have been left off the list find their way to the baize. While the lottery idea might not have been the best one, kudos for Poker Central and ARIA to expand the field and make the tournament even more interesting for poker’s fandom.

Poker News Daily



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