Saturday January 6, 2018 at 7:02 pm

January 1, 2018 marked the 20th anniversary of online poker when Planet Poker became the first virtual card room to host real money games. Planet Poker took their first steps into online poker approximately nine months before Rounders appeared in movie theaters. Talk about a blast from the past. Planet Poker is making me a feeling a little nostalgic for online poker via dial-up modems!

Happy 20

Time flies, eh? Has it really been 20 years since 1998? Is my Barenaked Ladies CD that old? What ever happened to them? As we usher in 2018, it's time to look back and feel nostalgia for things we did two decades ago. This week marked the 20th anniversary of online poker… albeit a baby step. Planet Poker became the first virtual card room to accept real-money deposits on January 1, 1998. Although poker and other card games were played in various forms on the internet (e.g. IRC), 1998 was the first year that Planet Poker spread cash games. Prior to the start of 1998, Planet Poker offered play money tables. They flipped the switch to real cash on 1/1/98 and… the rest is history.

The year 1998 seems like a distant memory, but it was the perfect time in the tech world before smartphones and social media took over every aspect of our lives. The internet life at the end of the 1990s consisted of firing up your modem and connecting your phone to the interwebs. Cue the static-modem sound.

Going online equated to simple tasks like checking your email, "surfing the web", IMing your friends, or hang out in chat rooms. The internet via forums and chat rooms and e-mail lists became an incubator for micro communities. Poker has always been a universal game, but the internet allowed enthusiasts to share their passion for the game with strangers on the other side of the planet.

For a small select group of tech-savvy poker players, Planet Poker was a glimpse into the future. The virtual tables became a conduit for poker greatness and helped ignite the poker boom. All it took was an internet connection and an interest in poker and... boom! Online pokers!

If you played online poker in the late 1990s, then hopped on the first wave of the glorious poker boom that would drastically change the gambling industry at the turn of the century. Chris Moneymaker would still be five years away, but Planet Poker got the party started.

Man… 1998 seems like yesterday, but 20 years creeped up on ya, right? In the sporting world, France defeated Brazil on its own soil to win the World Cup for the first time. Michael Jordan and Chicago Bulls won their third straight NBA title (and 6th crown in 8 years). The Detroit Red Wings won the Stanley Cup. The Winter Olympics were hosted in Japan and the Czech Republic (led by Jaromír Jágr and goalie Dominik Hasek) won the gold medal in men's ice hockey.


In the music world, Daft Punk's first album Homework was barely one year old. Country singer Garth Brooks had the top album in America and Gettin' Jiggy With It by Will Smith raced up the billboard charts. Celine Dion was competing with Elton John and Mariah Carey for supremacy of the radio airwaves, while MTV reached the peak of its powers. The grunge days were over and boy bands dominated MTV.

Titanic (released in 1997) became the biggest grossing film at the box office and James Cameron's mega-hit would go on to win multiple Oscars including Best Picture at the 70th Academy Awards in Hollywood in March 1998. That same year, a couple of actors from Boston – Matt Damon and Ben Affleck – co-won an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay. Damon's win at the Academy Awards with Good Will Hunting occurred less than six months before his poker movie, Rounders, debuted in theaters in late September 1998. Yeah, the cult classic Rounders hit the screens approximately nine months after Planet Poker began accepting real-money players. Timing is everything, eh?

In the poker world, Stu Ungar began 1998 as the reigning WSOP Main Event Champion. We all know how his sad story ended up. Ungar failed to defend his title in May 1998, and Scotty Nguyen won $1 million and the Main Event. Everyone knows Scotty's story and his infamous phrase... "You call and it's all over baby!"

In 2004, I opened an account on Planet Poker, which was one of six or seven poker rooms I tested out when I first caught the poker bug. Playing online poker was so simple during the boom in the wake of Chris Moneymaker heads-up win over Sammy Farha. No joke, but it only took a couple of minutes to open and fund an account. You could be playing on a new room within minutes of downloading the software. Too bad politics ruined a fun time and those crooked, smarmy political hacks in Washington D.C. crushed a sick racket.

The entire gambling industry has changed over the two decades due to the leaps in technology. Gambling is a global business. We've come a long way since the early days of online poker via dial-up modems. In 2018, we're caught up in the crypto craze as the poker world embraced blockchain technology (whether it was investing in cryptos or using the tech to play virtual poker). Poker and tech will continue to influence the game, but how much longer do we have to wait for politicians to get their act together… whether it's Australia, the U.S., or elsewhere.

Yeah, 20 years later… and online poker barely resembles its origins. Plant Poker and the old-school card rooms have become dinosaurs. Will partypoker and PokerStars be influential in 20 years? Will they still around in another 2038? Tune in to find out.

Latest news
Wednesday June 20, 2018 at 4:16 pm
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: The Grinder wins $50K PPC

The Grinder pulled off a hat trick! Michael 'The Grinder' Mizrachi won the $50,000 Poker Players Championship for a third time, which also marked his fourth-career bracelet win. The Grinder earned $1.2 million for fading a field of 87 hopefuls. Johnny World Hennigan finished in second place. Meanwhile, Yueqi Zhu won Event #35 $1,500 Mixed Omaha. The legendary grinder from China had cashed in 72 WSOP events and made 12 final tables before he finally stepped into the winner's circle to win his first bracelet.

Tuesday June 19, 2018 at 5:30 pm
2018 WSOP: The Grinder leads $50K PPC final, Matt Davis wins Seniors

Only 6 out of 87 remain in 2018 WSOP Poker Players Championship. The Grinder bagged up an impressive lead with nearly 8.9 million, or twice as much as Dan Smith in second place. Johnny World Hennigan, Aaron Katz, Benny Glasser, and Mike Leah are still left in the hunt for the Chip Reese Trophy and $1,239,126 for first place. Meanwhile over in the Seniors event, statistics professor Matthew Davis outlasted a record-setting field of 5,918 seniors (50+) to win Event #32 SENIORS $1,000 NL for a score worth $662,676.

Monday June 18, 2018 at 3:18 pm
2018 WSOP: The Grinder leads final 12 in $50K Players Championship

Only 12 players remain out of 86 original entries in the 2018 WSOP $50,000 Players Championship. Everyone of vying for the Chip Reese Trophy and a first-place prize worth $1,239,126. Phil Ivey bagged up third most chips at the end of the night and The Grinder is the chip leader. Also still alive... Mike Leah, Aaron Katz, Johnny World, Dan Smith, Benn Glasser, Chris Vitch, Brian Rast, Greg 'FBT' Mueller, Shaun Deeb and Bobby Bellande. Watch the free live stream starting at 3pm local time via Twitch.

Sunday June 17, 2018 at 8:04 am
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: Nirvana record producer Steve Albini wins bracelet

Steve Albini shipped Event #31 $1,500 Seven Card Stud at a star-packed table that included Jesus Ferguson, whom he busted in fourth place. Aussie pro Jeff Lisandro was seeking his seventh bracelet but the record producer of Nirvana's In Utero and punk musician Steve Albini stood in his way. Albini denied Lisandro's quest for numero seven and Albini won his first bracelet, plus $105,629 in cash.

Saturday June 16, 2018 at 4:59 pm
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: Johnny World Hennigan wins 5th bracelet

Johnny World Hennigan won his fifth WSOP bracelet when he outlasted a field of 166 runners in Event #27 $10,000 HORSE. Hennigan beat Bakes heads-up for the win and walked away with $415K in cash. Australian pro Michael Addamo won the long-distance Marathon event and survived a tough table that included 2014 WSOP Main Event Champ Martin Jacobson. Addamo shipped his first bracelet with a victory in Event #24 $2,620 NL Marathon for $653,581.

Wednesday June 13, 2018 at 5:31 pm
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: Brian Rast wins 4th bracelet; Doyle Brunson 6th place

Brian Rast won his fourth bracelet when he shipped WSOP Event #23 $10,000 NL 2-7 Lowball Championship. The legendary Doyle Brunson made the final table and finished in sixth place. Brunson confirmed that this would be his last WSOP event before he retired. Brunson missed a bracelet by a few spots, but he rode off into the sunset before making one last cameo at a WSOP final table in Las Vegas. Happy trails, Tex Dolly.

Tuesday June 12, 2018 at 4:43 pm
2018 WSOP: Philip Long and Jeremy Wien win bracelets

Two more first-time winners at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas. Philip Long won WSOP Event #22 $1,500 Eight Game Mix for his first bracelet and thwarted Daniel Negreanu's run for his seventh bracelet. Also, Jeremy Wien shipped WSOP Event #20 Big Blind Antes $5,000 NL. Wein, a derivatives trader from New York City had to call in sick to work to finish the marathon heads-up battle that lasted five-plus hours and extended the three-day tournament to an additional fourth day.

Tuesday June 12, 2018 at 2:56 pm
2018 WSOP: Doyle Brunson chasing 2-7 Lowball bracelet

Doyle Brunson is still alive... and he's still alive in the 2018 WSOP Event #23 $10,000 NL 2-7 Lowball Championship. Tex Dolly is retiring this year and this is probably his last tournament. This year's 2-7 event attracted 95 runners. Tex Dolly is 5th overall with 11 to go. Mike Wattel bagged up a massive lead last night. Both Doyle and Todd Brunson survived the cut. Brian Rast, Johnny World, Freddy Bonyadi, Galen Hall and Shawn Sheikhan are still left in the hunt. Watch the final table live stream over at PokerGo.

Monday June 11, 2018 at 6:14 pm
2018 WSOP: Adam Friedman and Ognyan Dimov win bracelets

Three more bracelets were up for grabs at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas. Adam Friedman proved to be the master of 20 mixed games when he won WSOP Event #18 $10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed for his second bracelet. Bulgaria's Ognyan Dimov shipped Event #17 $1,500 NL 6-Handed and outlasted a tough final table that included four bracelet winners. Lastly, Colorado's Craig Varnell took down Event #19 $565 PLO for his first bracelet.

Saturday June 9, 2018 at 4:43 pm
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: Justin Bonomo wins $10K HU Bracelet

Can anyone stop Justin Bonomo? The pro won seven heads-up matches en route to a victory in WSOP Event #16 $10,000 Heads-Up NL Championship. In the last 2 weeks, Bonomo won the Super High Roller Bowl, 2 $25Ks at the Aria, and now a WSOP bracelet in a $10K event. Bonomo won his first WSOP bracelet in 2018 and he added another piece of bling to his most recent horde. Since late March 2018, Bonomo has won $15M in tournaments. Also, cash-game specialist Ben Moon won Event #13 Big Blind Antes NL for a score worth $315K.

Wednesday June 6, 2018 at 7:06 pm
2018 WSOP: List of Bracelet Winners

The 2018 World Series of Poker at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas features 78 bracelet events with buy-ins ranging from $365 to $1 million. We compiled a list of 2018 bracelet winners, which will be updated daily. There will be multiple High Roller events in the $100K, $50K, and $25K range. In addition to the Big One for One Drop with a price tag of a cool million. There's also the Little One for One Drop and your favorite branded events like the GIANT, MILLY MAKER, COLOSSUS, and the MARATHON. Oh, and how could we forget the big kahuna of them all... the $10,000 buy-in Main Event Championship!

Tuesday June 5, 2018 at 5:50 am
2018 WSOP: Nick Petrangelo wins $100K High Roller for $2.9 million

Nick Petrangelo earned his second-career bracelet after he outlasted a field of 105 runners to win the 2018 WSOP 100K High Roller. Petrangelo banked $2,910,227 for first place. The 100K High Roller final table also Elio Fox, Andrea Eiler, Bryn Kenney, Stephen Chidwick, Jason Koon, Adrien Mateos, and Fedor Holz. Petrangelo prevented Elio Fox from winning his second bracelet this summer. Fox earned $1.7 million for second place.

Saturday June 2, 2018 at 3:56 pm
Breaking News
2018 WSOP: Elio Fox and Jordan Hufty win bracelets

The 2018 World Series of Poker kicked off at the Rio Casino in Las Vegas this week. So far, we have two events in the books. Jordan Hufty won the first non-open event with a victory in Event #1 $565 Casino Employees. The 2011 WSOP Europe Main Event Champion Elio Fox won his second-career bracelet when he outlasted 243 other players to win Event #2 $10,000 NL Super Turbo Bounty for almost $394K.

Free tournaments and added prizes

The Club Poker organizes freerolls and special tournaments with added prizes.
To qualify for free, register on our poker partners websites:

Tournaments Club Poker
Height of the 8's
Tuesday June 26, 2018 at 8:00 pm
$100 guaranteed
Big Poker League
Wednesday June 27, 2018 at 7:04 pm
$125 added
Height of the 8's
Tuesday July 3, 2018 at 8:00 pm
$100 guaranteed
Height of the 8's
Tuesday July 10, 2018 at 8:00 pm
$100 guaranteed
Height of the 8's
Tuesday July 17, 2018 at 8:00 pm
$100 guaranteed