Uri Gilboa made history. The Israeli became the first player from his country to win a title on the European Poker Tour. Gilboa faded a field of 758 runners to win the EPT Sochi Main Event in Sochi, Russia. First place paid out 27,475,000 Rubles, or approximately $420,000 USD. Israel finished first and second place in Sochi. Zakhar Babaev took down second for nearly $250K USD.
Online poker returns to the Mountain State. It's only a matter of time before West Virginia residents can play legalized online poker within its mountainous borders. West Virginia became the fifth state in America to legalize online poker since Black Friday 2011. It has been a slow process brining online poker back to American poker players, but West Virginia took a bold step forward with the West Virginia Lottery Interactive Wagering Act.
The newest live poker craze, the action-inducing Short-Deck Hold'em, has now become a part of everyday life in the online poker world. partypoker is the latest online poker operator to introduce Shortdeck cash games to their platform. The 36-card deck variant of old-school Hold'em is insanely popular in Asia and has become a staple among high rollers all over the world. SHORTDECK games are up and running on partypoker now.
PokerStars is switching things up once again with the Sunday Million. This weekend, they are making the Sunday Million a Progressive Knockout (PKO) event. Players will be rewarded for busting other players and they can bank those bounties even if they bust out before the money. The PKO Sunday Milly kicks off on Sunday, March 31. All of the majors will be PKOs. Buckle up.
The partypoker LIVE MILLIONS South America played down to a champion at the Copacabana Palace Hotel in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Bruno Volkmann headed into the final table with the chip lead. The other finalists also included Matas Cimbolas, Sam Gagnon, Ciao Hey, Martin Mathis, and Vlada Stojanovic. The final three made a deal and Martin Mathis emerged as the champion after defeating Bruno Volkmann in a lengthy heads-up battle. Mathis banked R$3,494,800 for his victory, or approximately $900K.
PokerStars released the dates for the 2019 Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP) with the first day of events kicking off on Sunday, May 12 and concluding on May 27. As per usual, there will be low, medium, and high versions of events. Cards go in the air for the Main Event set for Sunday, May 26. Stay tuned for more details.
Jaime Staples, one of the most popular poker streamers on the interwebs, will join his brother Matt Staples as a member of Team Online. partypoker assembled a mega-team of the top Twitch streamers in the world, which also includes super baller Jeff Gross. Jaime will officially become a part of the team on May 4, which is also Star Wars day.
Over the weekend, someone walked into the Bellagio poker room and pulled off a brazen Friday night robbery without anyone even noticing. The thief fled out the Bellagio's side entrance by the north valet and four Las Vegas cops confronted the suspect when he failed to carjack a vehicle in the valet. The robber pulled out a gun and shot at the police, who instantly returned fire and struck him. The suspect was taken to the hospital and later died from his wounds.
Vitalijs Zavorotnijs came into the final table of the 2019 WPT Barcelona with the chip lead and he held off the other five at the final table to take down the latest stop on the World Poker Tour. Zavorotnijs faded a field of 1,227 runners to win €600,000 or $678K USD. His final table also included Eric Sfez, Niko Koop, Boris Kolev, Jerry Odeen, and Alain Zeidan.
Vinicius Lima went from the short stack to the champion at the 2019 WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open. Lima won $728,430 at the HyperX Sports eSports Arena at the Luxor Casino in Las Vegas. The event began in Atlantic City at the end of January and was action paused six weeks to play the finale out in Las Vegas. Lima faded a field of 1,415 for his first WPT win.
Frank Stepuchin faded a field of 253 runners to win the WPT Gardens. The final table played out at the HyperX eSports Arena at the Luxor in Las Vegas. The final six included Shannon Shorr, Steve Sung, Breant Roberts, Ray Qartomy, and Jonathan Abdellatif. Stepuchin defeated Shorr heads up for the title and $548,825. Meanwhile, at the WPT Rolling Thunder just outside Sacramento, California, Erkut Yilmaz won his second-career title on the WPT for a score worth $303,920. He outlasted a tough final table and beat Jim Collopy heads-up for the win.
The World Poker Tour is experimenting with delayed final tables in Las Vegas this year. The first of them, hosted at the HyperX eSports Arena at the Luxor, included the final six of the WPT LA Poker Classic. Old David Baker outlasted a final table that included Darren Elias, Matas Cimbolas, Jean-Claude Moussa, John Smith, and Steve Yea. Baker banked a little over $1 million for his victory.
The 2019 Triton High Roller Series in Jeju, South Korea concluded with its Main Event Championship. The 2 million HKD buy-in event (approximately $255K USD) attracted 48 total entries, including 16 re-entries. The stacked final table included Aussie Millions winner Bryn Kenney, Timothy Adams, Ike Haxton, David Peters, Petter Jetten, and Dan Smith. Canadian pro Tim Adams and Bryn Kenney chop it heads up, with Adams banking $3.54 million for first and Kenney taking down a little over $3 million for second place.
Jason Koon won another high-baller affair at the Triton Super High Roller Series in Jeju South Korea. The American pro faded a field of 81 hopefuls in the Event #5 HKD 1,000,000 Short Deck. He won HKD 22.3 million, which is approximately $2.9 million USD. His final table included Paul Puha, John Juanda, Jun Wang, Rochard Yong, Devan Tang, Wai Yong, Furkat Rakhimov, and Gabe Patgorski. Koon picked off Puha heads-up for the victory.
The 2019 WPT LA Poker Classic Main Event played down to its final table of six players, but the finale will not resume until Monday, March 11, 2019 in Las Vegas. Some final tables for this season of the WPT will be played down at the HyperX eSports Arena at the Luxor Casino in Las Vegas. With six remaining, Darren Elias is the big stack. He's already won a record four WPT titles and he's close to earning his fifth crown since 2014. First place pays out a little more than $1 million plus a seat in the season-ending Tournament of Champions. Also at the final table are David 'ODB" Baker, Matas Cimbolas, Jean-Claude Moussa, Steve Yea, and John Smith.
The 2019 Triton Poker Series in Jeju, Korea is almost half-done. Three events are in the books. Justin Bonomo won the opening event or 250K HKD Short Deck Event for a HKD 4.6 million (or $586K USD). Hong Kong's Devan Tang won HKD 9.7 million (or $1.24 USD) for taking down Event #2 HKD 500K Short Deck. Malaysian Michael Soyza binked Event #3 HKD 500K 6-Max for a heady HKD 11.15 million (or $1.420M USD).
Things got out of hand at the Arena Poker Room at Talking Stick Casino in Scottsdale, Arizona on Sunday. Pro Justin Pechie captured the incident on his phone when two poker players were involved in fisticuffs. As expected, chips went flying everywhere before security stepped in.
partypoker is making a huge push to build out an online quad of the top content creators in the streaming realm. partypoker launched Team Online to specifically target the top Twitch streamers. They has nine members and counting including Matt Staples, Hristivoje "ALLinPav" Pavlovic, Travis "dramaticdegen" Darroch, Patrick "XxXMLGPROXxX" Tardif , Alan "hotted89" Widmann, Ryan "RSchoonbaert" Schoonbaert, Courtney "courtiebee" Gee, Steven "DWstevie" Kok, and their newest member, Monika "HeyMonia" Zukowicz.