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The Online Poker Guy

May 25th, 2014 at 3:47 pm

The 2014 World Series Of Poker (WSOP) Begins

poker imageThe 45th annual World Series of Poker officially begins Monday, May 27,2014 with an expected $200 million up for grabs and the winner of the WSOP Main Event walking away with $10 million as well as the cherished diamond bracelet.

The World Series of Poker which began in 1970 will be televised from the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, NV and consists of a comprehensive collection of the game’s most popular poker variations. The events will run through July 14, 2014.

A total of 65 WSOP bracelets are in play, (three more than last year) so you have 65 chances to make your poker dreams come true. As usual, the WSOP offers something for everyone, satellites, cash games, bracelet events and the return of the $1 million buy-in, Big One For One Drop Event.

The full 2014 World Series of Poker tournament schedule can be found here:

November 6th, 2013 at 2:58 pm

Ryan Riess Wins The 2013 World Series Of Poker (WSOP) Main Event

Ryan Riess beat runner up, Jay Farber in a terrific heads-up battle to win the 2013 World Series Of Poker (WSOP) Main Event. He had Jay on the ropes earlier, but Jay was able to hit a nine to make a straight and keep his hopes alive.

With the blinds at $600,000/$1,200,000 and the antes at $200,000, the final hand came down to Jay (on the short stack with less than $15,000,000) having few options and going all in with Q9 of spades.

Ryan called instantly with AK of hearts and was a 65% favorite. When the flop came 4 of clubs, J of diamonds and 10 of diamonds, Jay lost some of his outs as a queen would have given Ryan a straight. Jay, dead to a 5 watched as the 3 of clubs came on the turn and the 4 of diamonds came on the river making Ryan the latest main event winner and $8,361,570 richer.

The rest of the final table and their respective payouts finished in the following manner:

2nd Jay Farber $5,174,357

3rd Amir Lehavot $3,727,823

4th Sylvain Loosli $2,792,533

5th JC Tran $2,106,893

6th Marc McLaughlin $1,601,024

7th Michiel Brummelhuis $1,225,356

8th David Benefield $944,650

9th Mark Newhouse $733,224

July 16th, 2013 at 7:02 pm

The 2013 WSOP November Nine Main Event Final Table Is Set

After more than a week of play,  a field of 6,352 players has been reduced to the final nine who will meet again in November to determine who will become the WSOP  Main Event champion.

The winner will not only get the coveted bracelet but will also take home over $8 million. All of the final nine players are already in good shape, being guaranteed at least $700,000 just by making the final table.

The players and their chip stacks are as follows:

  1. J.C. Tran $38,000,000  from the United States
  2. Amir Lehavot 29,700,000 from Israel
  3. Marc McLaughlin 26,525,000 from Canada
  4. Jay Farber 25,975,000 from the United States
  5. Ryan Riess 25,875,000 from the United States
  6. Sylvain Loosli 19,600,000 from France
  7. Michiel Brummelhuis 11,275,000 from the Netherlands
  8. Mark Newhouse 7,350,000 from the United States
  9. David Benefield 6,375,000 from the United States

Former World Series of Poker Main Event Champion Carlos Mortensen from Spain, finished in 10th place just missing the final table.

Tune in November 4, when the battle for the bracelet resumes.


March 13th, 2013 at 11:26 am

Team Negreanu Crushes Team Hansen in Online Heads-up Poker Challenge

The heads-up challenge between the pros from Team PokerStars and Team Full Tilt ended with with Team PokerStars crushing their opponents 3-0 and picking up the $150,000 in prize money.

Playing at the European Poker Tour London, each player competed in a best-of-three heads-up No-Limit Hold’em online match. Team Full Tilt,
made up of Gus Hansen, Tom Dwan and Viktor Blom played heads-up against the Poker Stars team of Daniel Negreanu, ElkY Grospellier and Ike Haxton at $50,000 per match. The first player to win 2 out of 3 in each match would win a point. The team winning 2 out of 3 matches would take the total prize money.

Blom played Grospellier, Dwan played Haxton and Negreanu would face off against Hansen. After the dust settled, Tom Dwan was the only Full Tilt player to win a game as Team PokerStars walked away with the cash. Negreanu beat Hansen despite timing out twice with the nuts.

Daniel Negreanu commented, “Well, I did predict that we’d win all 3 matches and it went just as I’d predicted. When asked if there would be a rematch, Negreanu replied, “Ah well, it’s up to them!” He laughed and said, “If they’d like to donate some more to our fund, we’d be more than happy to play them again.”

ElkY added, “It went amazingly well. The whole PokerStars team had dinner together the night before and Daniel Negreanu, Eugene Katchalov and above all Isaac Haxton – because he’s played a lot against Isildur and had a lot of information to share – all gave me advice. I had also watched a lot of his matches from when he did the SuperStar Showdown on PokerStars, so I had a lot of information about his style, more than he did on mine, since I haven’t been playing as many heads-ups as I used to. I think it was very important to win the first match, it put more pressure on him. We also worked on finding what aspects of his game I could use to my advantage, and what I could do in certain situations to make him feel even more frustrated.”

This $150,000 match all started from a tweet by Gus Hansen where he teased Negreanu about a hand from High Stakes Poker from a number of years ago where Negreanu’s full house ran into Hansen’s quads. Daniel responded by issuing this challenge to Hansen and the rest, as they say, is history.

February 28th, 2013 at 5:33 pm

Team Negreanu vs. Team Hansen In Heads-up Poker Challenge

Team Full Tilt Poker player Gus Hansen has agreed to a challenge from Team Poker Stars player Daniel Negreanu for a three-on-three online heads-up match. The challenge is a battleship-style tournament to be held at PokerStars’ London event in March.

Negreanu surveyed fans as well as other pros from Team Poker Stars to help him in his decision on who to choose for his team. Eventually Negreanu arrived at Isaac Haxton and French poker star, Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier to play against Gus Hansen’s team of Tom “durrrr” Dwan and Viktor “Isildur1” Blom.

Negreanu is suggesting that each player put $50,000 into the pot ($150,000 per team) with the plan being a three table No-Limit Hold’em heads-up freezeout on laptops. Hansen and Negreanu are team captains so they will play each other but we will have to wait to see how the other parings match up.

A player wins an individual match by taking two of the three tables. The team who wins will have to take two of the three individual matches overall.

This is the first time there has ever been an official competition between Poker Stars pros and Full Tilt Poker pros. Interestingly, Daniel has even agreed to play the event on Hansen’s Full Tilt Poker site instead of Poker Stars. It’s set to take place during the EPT Main Event in London, which is March 10-16.

Here’s a video of Daniel Negreanu talking about how it all got started:

August 1st, 2012 at 11:41 am

Poker Betting Is On The Increase In Australia

Australia has seen huge growth in the sports betting arena but poker remains the star attraction. Business analysts IBISWorld report that poker accounted for over 60% of total betting spent by gamblers during 2011 and 2012. The sports betting sector has seen phenomenal growth and is becoming increasingly popular. At present it’s only 1.6% of the total gambling market but it has seen 14.7% growth over the past five years, which is more than lotteries and horse racing.

IBISWorld predicts Australian gambling will grow to $22.5 billion, with an average of $1,256 wagered per person in 2012. Customers are displaying an increased awareness of where they are placing their bets. And they are taking full advantage of the benefits and convenience of online casino services. Along with sports betting, gamblers now have access to a wide selection of casino games and multi-player options such as online poker tournaments. All can be accessed direct from the Internet and increasingly also on mobile devices and smartphones.

Sally Gainsbury, from the center for gambling, education and research at Southern Cross University commented that: ‘The prominence of new technology, such as the rising penetration of smartphones, enables people to place a bet anywhere’. Gaming Club’s official representative said, “The gambling industry has been very strong in Australia for many years now. This has clearly been helped by the growth of several online gaming websites that offer hundreds of online casino games.”


November 11th, 2011 at 12:19 am

Pius Heinz Wins 2011 WSOP Main Event

With six of the November nine busting out the previous Sunday, the WSOP main event title was up for grabs Tuesday night airing on ESPN.

The six players to exit Sunday and their respective winnings are:

4th Matt Giannetti $3,011,655
5th Phil Collins $2,268,909
6th Eoghan O’Dea $1,720,396
7th Badih Bounahra $1,313,851
8th Anton Makiievskyi $1,009,910
9th Sam Holden $782,115

That left Pius Heinz, Martin Staszko and Ben Lamb left from the starting field of 6,865 players to fight it out for the title on Tuesday night.

It didn’t take long for the fireworks to begin. On hand #1, Ben Lamb on the short stack, pushed all in with KJ off suit and was called by Staszko’s pocket sevens. The sevens held up and Lamb is crippled with just 10 big blinds left.  On hand #4 Lamb has little choice but to shove with Q6 off and is called again by Staszko’s pocket pair, this time jacks. They hold up and Lamb finishes in third.

Heads up between the 22 year old Heinz and the 35 year old Staszko then begins on hand #5 with the blinds at $800,000/$1,600,000 and a $200,000 ante. Heinz, the more aggressive of the two is looking to become the 2nd youngest player to win the WSOP main event. (Joe Cada age 21 in 2009)

Heinz had trouble making hands in heads up play and fell behind to Staszko but the aggressive Heinz hung in and eventually pulled ahead.

The final hand saw Staszko,  down to just over $44,000,000 in chips, pushing all in with 10c-7c  against the As-Kc of Heinz. When neither player hit a pair, Heinz was the champion, winning $8,715,618. Staszko collected $5,433,086 for second.

German visitors, learn more about online casinos at

July 21st, 2011 at 11:04 am

The 2011 WSOP November Nine Main Event Final Table Is Set

The final nine players who will make up the 2011 WSOP main event final table have emerged from a field of 6,865 players.

The chip leader, Martin Staszko (40.1 million in chips) — A professional poker player for about one year, is 35 years old and admits that he plays much more online than live. In fact, since arriving in Vegas on June 2, he has played 15 tournaments, which he says is more than he has played in his entire life. He is the first player from the Czech Republic to make the final table.

In second is, Eoghan O’Dea (33.9 million) — He is a 26-year-old pro who has cashed in big tournaments before and his father, Donnacha, has also won a bracelet and cashed in the main event six times.

Next is Matt Giannetti (24.7 million) — A 26-year-old pro from Las Vegas, Nevada well-known in poker circles for his cash game play.

Phil Collins (23.8 million) — another 26 year old from Las Vegas, is in 4th place.

In fifth place is Ben Lamb (20.8 million) — He is considered by many, the best player at the table. He has already won a bracelet, made two other final tables and taken home $1.2 million before the main event.

In the sixth place is Badih Bounahra (19.7 million) — who at 49 is the oldest player of the nine. He is also an amateur and strictly a live player. He’s also the first player from Belize to make the final table at the WSOP.

In seventh is Pius Heinz (16.4 million) — He is 22 years old and is the first German player to reach the November Nine.

In eighth is Anton Makiievskyi (13.8 million) — The youngest player at the final table, the 21-year-old Ukrainian can become the youngest WSOP main event champion if he wins in November.

In ninth is Sam Holden (12.3 million) –a 22-year-old native of Canterbury, England who survived being short stacked for most of Days 6 and 7.

Seating for this year’s November Nine are as follows:

Seat 1:  Matt Giannetti (Las Vegas, NV) – 24,750,000 in chips

Seat 2:  Badih Bou-Nahra (Belize City, Belize) – 19,700,000 in chips

Seat 3:  Eoghan O’Dea (Dublin, Ireland) – 33,925,000 in chips

Seat 4:  Phil Collins (Las Vegas, NV) – 23,875,000 in chips

Seat 5:  Anton Makiievskyi (Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine) – 13,825,000 in chips

Seat 6:  Sam Holden (Sussex, UK) – 12,375,000 in chips

Seat 7:  Pius Heinz (Cologne, Germany) – 16,425,000 in chips

Seat 8:  Ben Lamb (Tulsa, OK) – 20,875,000 in chips

Seat 9:  Martin Staszko (Trinec, Czech Republic) – 40,175,000 in chips

The players are now on a three and a half month break before play resumes on November 5th. They will then play until only two players left and after a day off, will resume to determine the next No-Limit Hold’em World Champion.

April 12th, 2011 at 9:58 am

Tom (durrrr) Dwan vs. Daniel (Jungleman12) Cates Online Poker Challenge

Here’s the latest regarding the online poker challenge match between Tom “durrrr” Dwan and Daniel “Jungleman 12″ Cates that’s taking place on Full Tilt

The latest session finished March 29, 2011 with almost 1,100 hands being played. Jungleman 12 came out slightly ahead by about $40,000.  So far, 19,335 hands have been played out of the 50,000 to be played (with almost $130,000,000 having been bet to this point) and Daniel is winning the overall poker challenge by a little over $1,251,000.

For those unfamiliar with the Tom Dwan Full Tilt online poker challenge challenge, Tom puts up prize money at 3 to 1. If he wins, he gets the amount won at the tables and $500,000 from his opponent. If he loses,  his opponent gets the amount won at the tables and $1,500,000 from Dwan.

The first match (which hasn’t continued since August, 2010 ) has Tom Dwan playing Omaha Hi against Patrik Antonius. So far, 39,436 hands have been played out of the 50,000 hands to be played with Tom up a little over $2,000,000. Amazingly, over $342,000,000 has been wagered over those 39,000+ hands.

December 20th, 2010 at 9:17 pm

Gambling Probe: Addictions Institute Receives $3 Million for Study

aces.jpgNow that there’s a marked shift toward legalizing many forms of Internet gambling in the United States, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism has granted $3 million to revisit a study done in 1999-2000 that identified where and how often problem gambling was happening and the consequences. The grant was spurred by concerns that greater access to Internet gambling will produce greater chance for gambling addiction to take root.

The University of Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions (BRIA) is the recipient of the grant. Senior Research Scientist John W. Welte, Ph.D., of the BRIA conducted the original investigation and will once again be heading the research project. The study will consist of Welte and his team conducting phone interviews and other behind-the-scenes research to see how online gambling expansion is affecting problem gambling figures. Welte will incorporate data from his previous research project with new research to reach his conclusions. Research topics will not just be limited to Texas Hold ‘em poker and other popular forms of online and casino gambling, but also on the more informal worlds of fantasy sports and office betting pools.

According to Welte: “This research will examine trends in gambling behavior and gambling problems among adults in the United States since 1999. Most importantly, we also will examine the relationship between gambling trends and changes in the social approval of gambling, changes in neighborhoods and changes in state gambling laws.”

The focus on local gambling is key because cities and states control casinos and lottery outlets, in effect giving voters and policy makers influence over the rates of problem gambling in society at large.

A Gambler Gambles

An argument for legalizing online gambling, is that there will always be and always has been forms of gambling. For centuries people have gambled. Ancient cave drawings have depicted people playing dice; dice made of the bone of ancient and extinct dogs have been found that date back 40,000 years. Mahjong, the Chinese tile game is a game of chance that dates back to 2300 B.C., and archeologists have even found gambling artifacts in what was ancient Greece, even though gambling at that time was forbidden. It is said that the universe was split into heaven, hell, and the sea by a game of dice between Zeus, Hades, and Poseidon. Gambling has been around a long, long time.

“The thing is,” says long time risk taker David Giordano, “that there are those that gamble, and there are those who just don’t. Take my wife for example. She’s never bought a lottery ticket in her life. She doesn’t know how to play poker. I take her to the casino, she goes to the spa. She won’t even let the gas needle get lower than half a tank. She doesn’t risk anything!” He takes a drag off his cigarette and continues, “Me? I’m a gambler. I play the stocks, I bet horses, blackjack. I’ve lost some on the Knicks. That’s just me. A gambler gambles. Hey! I may lose just as much or more than I win, but that don’t stop me. Why would that stop me? And why should I be stopped by the Congress? It’s America, I’m free right? And I want to gamble online without repercussion. And I know what I’m doing, so they should just let me. No two ways about it. Legalize it. Legalize online gambling.”

Playing card photo by Chris Withers