World Series of Poker Champion 2009 - Joe Cada

After 3 months of waiting, a new world champion of poker has emerged and his name is not Phil Ivey. When the November 9 converged in Las Vegas last weekend, many expected Ivey to storm back from being a short stack, and though he lasted for several hours, it just wasn’t meant to be for the poker icon as he just was never able to break the $16 million mark. The other well-known pro, founder of Card Player magazine Jeff Shulman, also failed to make the final two despite playing a solid tight style throughout.

Instead, when the dust had settled, the final two competitors were online heads up cash game specialist Joe Cada and a previously unknown mountain man, Darvin Moon who, Read more

ESPN Extends Contract with WSOP

The World Series of Poker will have a stable home for the next 10 years, and that home is ESPN. Not the actual event itself; that still presumably will be remaining at the Rio for the foreseeable future. The actual television coverage rather, will be staying at ESPN as the Worldwide Leader in Sports announced that they have extended the partnership with Harrah’s entertainment through 2018. Read more

November Nine - Final Table at 2009 WSOP

After several grueling days of competition, and nearly 6,500 eliminations, the Main Event of the 2009 World Series of Poker is finally down to its eagerly anticipated November 9.  Though several top name pros were able to make deep runs, including former champs Peter Eastgate and Joe Hachem, in addition to household names such as Antonio Esfandiari, the only well-known left is the one considered by many to be the best of them all.  That distinction belongs to none other than the great Phil Ivey, poker pro at Full Tilt Poker. Read more

Players Prepare for the Main Event Day 6

The road to crowning a world champion of poker is a long and winding one, but we are inching closer and closer to having it happen.  Play began on day 5 with 407 players remaining from the sold out field and play went quickly as scores of players were eliminated in a continuation of the fast play that ensued once the money bubble burst on day 4.

Going into day 5, the goal was to play two 5-hour levels or down to Read more

World Series of Poker Main Event Players Reach Money

And so the countdown begins.  After the elimination of thousands of players during the first 3 days of play, Day 4 concluded well after the money bubble had burst.  The top 648 players in this year’s WSOP made the money with the minimum prize being $21,365, slightly more than double the entrance fee.  The players played hand for hand for approximately 2 hours until a player from Los Angeles named Kia Hamadami busted out in 649th place.  Fortunately for Hamadami, by being the bubble boy, he “won” entry into the Read more

Jose Canseco Enters Dream Team Poker Event

Perhaps Jose Canseco is trying to take this poker thing a bit more seriously.  It seems that the former baseball star and admitted steroid cheat, who has spent much of his time in Las Vegas during the World Series of Poker this year, has entered the third annual Dream Team Poker Tournament with will be held on July 12 and 13.

Canseco’s teammates in this event, on a team call “On Tilt”, are Shane McDowell and Josh Clark. Read more

Jason Alexander Off to Flying Start at WSOP Main Event

The main event of the World Series of Poker always attracts many big celebrities. For the most part, they all go quietly with none in recent memory making any big runs of note. That appears to have changed in this 2009 edition as former Seinfeld star, Jason Alexander, finished day 1A 7th overall in chips. Though still extremely early, this has already been the best day for Alexander at any of his world series’ experiences.

Seated next to other well-known stars such as rapper Nelly and fellow comedian Brad Garret early on, Alexander slowly but surely accrued chips winning some small pots, but a big loss had him almost mentally checking out. However, shortly after returning from the dinner break, his day changed as his Pocket 10’s sucked out on a flopped flush for runner-runner full house to double himself up and vault himself back into it. From that point on, he rose up the leaderboard, culminating with his 7th place finish for the day.

He is modest about his skill level, as he just plays the game as a hobby and has no illusions about being a great poker player, though he says that his past experiences at the World Series have helped prepare him for this year’s run.

Alexander seems to enjoy the social aspect of the game and says he is having a good time, though he does admit going deep in the tournament would be a dream come true.

Only time will tell to see if Costanza has what it takes to be a big hit.

Update at the $50K H.O.R.S.E. Event

Eight players remain in the $50K H.O.R.S.E event going into the final day, with all eyes on the $1.2 million first prize. Swedish youngster Erik Sagstrom, known for his online dominance on Betfair is chipleader, followed by Read more

H.O.R.S.E offers no kick for Negreanu

The $50K H.O.R.S.E event got under way this weekend but very few players straddled up. For the pros, this is the ‘showpiece’ event – the massive buy-in attracts a stellar field and juicy payouts. It’s on a par with the Main Event as the most coveted bracelet. However, the atmosphere was somewhat subdued this year, with only 95 contestants taking to the green felt; significantly less than the 143 and 148 who have entered the last two years. In his FullContactPoker blog (you can check it out here: Daniel Negreanu poker pro, dismisses claims this is down to the troublesome economic climate. Instead, he argues a lack of TV coverage (no major network, notably ESPN, have agreed to screen the action) has contributed to the dearth of jockeys. With no brand advertisement, websites sponsoring pros for the event are reluctant to fork out for the steep buy-in – there simply isn’t the incentive. It all boils down to the reasons for the snub from the TV companies. Negreanu suggests the multi-variant format doesn’t appeal to the casual viewer – who are only really familiar with NL Hold’em since the poker boom. The Canadian Limit expert wants the final table to be all NL, so television will once again embrace the event.

Negreanu’s suggestion seems to be a bit ‘anti-poker’. The $50K H.O.R.S.E event is SUPPOSED to be orientated towards the pro’s, who inevitably all have their preferred variants. It’s the $10K Main Event where all the media coverage and jazz comes to the fore. Making the final table NL is a bit of a kick in the teeth for someone, such as Jeff Lisandro, who has accumulated their stack in a specific variant, such as Stud. Would they not be irate if it was all blown away by one ‘cooler’ or bad beat? It just seems that once you mount a H.O.R.S.E, you should stick with it on every furlong. The solution is simple – introduce more ‘higher buy in’ NL events, such as the $40K, which was won by Ukrainian Vitaly Lunkin. But this is down to tournament director Jack Effel to organize, not Mr Negreanu.

Antonio Esfandiari Goes Topless at Vegas Party

The “magician” Antonio Esfandiari has been up to a few tricks, but not up his sleeve as he indulges in some topless partying. One lucky snapper caught him baring his chest and a funky looking dog-tag as he embraced a girl in a Vegas night club. Antonio, who recently Read more