Even though it looks like the 2020 World Series of Poker will be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the 51st running of the WSOP is still on the docket. The WSOP will make a decision in May, but all signs point toward the inevitable postponement. The WSOP is the only major sporting event in North America that has yet to be postponed or rescheduled.
The 2020 WSOP Online Super Circuit Series at WSOP.com came to an end with the $525 buy-in Main Event championship. Event #16 Main Event attracted 1,134 runners and a prize pool worth $567,000. Champie 'kiddchamp' Douglas defeated Scott '2Due4U' Blumstein heads-up to win the title, Circuit ring, and $130,410 in cash. Meanwhile, Matt Stout shipped two events including Event #2 NL Monster Stack for $43,286 and Event #11 NL Big $500 for $63,234.
After 31 sessions of the Galfond Challenge on Run It Once Poker between Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond and VeniVidi, Galfond is down - €154,287 as they approach 20,000 hands of their 25,000-hand heads-up bout playing €100/€200 PLO. Galfond stormed back after losing 900K during the first 15 sessions. His heater continued after he banked another six-figure winning day with a€106K score on Day 31. The Challenge resumes on Monday.
Over the years, PokerStars introduced various new versions and tweaks on traditional Texas Hold'em. In their latest new format, PokerStars introduced Swap Hold'dem. The game is essentially Texas Hold'em, except you can swap out one or two cards at any given time, but can only do so one time. Unlike some of the weird gimmicky game, the fun and exciting Swap Hold'em should stick this time around.
The Galfond Challenge on Run It Once Poker is on a short pause after VeniVidi asked for a couple days off during their recent downswing. Phil Galfond stormed back in the last two weeks while playing two tables of heads-up €100/€200 PLO against VeniVidi. After 28 sessions, Galfond is only stuck €319K after wiping out €581K in previous losses. The two have less than 7,500 hands to go in the first installment of the Galfond Challenge and action will resume on Thursday.
Musician and actor, Kenny Rogers, passed away recently at age 81. Rogers is a country and western superstar, but he's also well known in the poker world for his anthemic hit, "The Gambler", which appeared on Rogers' 1978 album, also titled "The Gambler".
The Poker Masters quickly became a popular series among the high roller crowd. With the quarantine underway during the coronavirus pandemic, the Poker Masters teamed up with partypoker to create the Poker Masters Online. The first installment will include 30 online events -- with buy-ins from $10K to $50K -- running from Sunday, April 12 through Sunday April 26, 20200 on partypoker. The first Poker Masters Online has a guaranteed prize pool totaling $15.2 million including a $2 million guaranteed Main Event.
Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak announced that all non-essential business will be shut down due to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) outbreak. That decree particularly included shutting down all casinos including adjacent shops and restaurants for 30 days. Social distancing is the most effective way to slow down the spread of the virus, much to the dismay of gambling enthusiasts. At least Nevada residents have online options, but nothing in the virtual world can ever compare to the glitz and glamour of Sin City.
Coronavirus has officially shut down the Wynn and MGM properties in Las Vegas after Sin City saw their infection rate spike over the weekend. Meanwhile in Los Angeles, the major casinos and card rooms closed including Commerce and the Bike. Not all casinos in America or around the world are closed, but major ones on the West Coast took drastic measures during the pandemic.
Due to the coronavirus outbreak, PokerStars adjusted their schedule in the wake of the global pandemic. PokerStars canceled the EPT Monte Carlo and Brazilian Series of Poker (BOSP) in Sao Paolo. PokerStars canceled a bunch of PSPC events in Europe last week as well. For full details, head over to PokerStars Blog.
Daniel Negreanu tweeted his thoughts on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak that has hit the US. He wants all poker rooms to close to help prevent the spread of the virus that the WHO upgraded to a pandemic. Meanwhile, earlier in the week PokerStars announced they were suspending tournaments in Europe through April due to concerns over the coronavirus outbreak.
Tony Tran outlasted a field of 250 runners to win the 2020 WPT Rolling Thunder in Thunder Valley, CA. The final table in Thunder Valley included Robert Heidorn, Kevin Rabichow, Jake Schwartz, Tony Tran, Erkut Yilmaz, and Shankar Pillai. Tran obliterated the final table en route to winning $279,270 plus a seat into the season-ending Tournament of Champions.
After taking off a couple of weeks to catch his breath after a tremendous downswing in the inaugural Galfond Challenge on Run It Once, Phil Galfond and VeniVidi resumed their match with five sessions. They finally passed the mid-way mark of the 25,000-hand heads-up battle. On Day 20, Galfond won €92,803 for his third winning session since resuming the challenge. He's now stuck €592,309, which is a huge improvement from when he was €900K in the hole after the first 15 days.
The 2020 partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Super High Roller Series Sochi kicked off. Xia He Jiang won Event #1 $25K Short Deck for $378,000 after defeating John Cynn heads-up. Sam Trickett banked $435,000 for winning Super High Roller Series Sochi Event #2 $25,000 NL. The UK pro faded 58 entrants to take down the second event in Russia. The final seven also included Ivan Leow, Matthias Eibinger, Adrian Mateos, Timothy Adams, and Phil Ivey. In Event #3 $25K Short Deck, Wai Leong Chan defeated Paul Phua heads up for the trophy and $457,500 in cash.
PokerStars will celebrate the 14th anniversary of the Sunday Million with a special event on Sunday, March 22, 2020 with a $12.5 million guaranteed prize pool, which will be the largest single tournament in PokerStars history. The 14th anniversary Sunday Mill is a re-entry event (up to three re-entries) has late registration open until Day 2. First place will win at least a cool million. China's Wang 'wangli0402' Li won last year's record-setting Sunday Million 13th Anniversary event.
The 2020 WPT LA Poker Classic at Commerce Casino on the outskirts of Los Angeles attracted 490 runners this year. With six to go, Balakrishna Patur heads into the final table with the chip lead. The final six also includes Matas Cimbolas, James Carroll, Ka Kwan Lau, Scott Hempel, and Upeshka De Silva. The final table resumes on April 2 at the HyperX eSports Arena in Las Vegas. First place pays out $1,015,000 plus a freeroll into the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions.
Chicago's Shiva Dudani outlasted a field of 989 runners to win the $1,700 buy-in Main Event at the 2020 WSOP Circuit Horseshow Hammond (Chicago) for $258,078. His final table included Casey Carroll, Firas Sadou, Evan Bethyo, Bryan Skreens, Pat Steele, Hussian Sajwani, Nicola Ditrapani, and Voytek Glab. Dudani earned his second WSOP Circuit ring.
The WPT returned to Paris for the first time since 2013 with the inaugural WPTDeepStacks Festival at Club Pierre Charron. The €1,500 buy-in Main Event anchored the return of the WPT to Paris. Ten players entered the final day of action and Sonny Franco was the last one left standing. Franco banked €200,000 (or approximately $222,420) for first place after fading a total field of 853 runners. The final six also included Ouassini Mansouri, Lianmin Bai, Florent Estegassy, Marcin Wydrowski, and Jean Paul Pasqualini.