Sunday January 6, 2019 at 6:26 pm

The 2019 PCA is officially underway at Atlantis Casino and Resort in the Bahamas. The PokerStars Players Championship kicks off today. PokerStars gave away Platinum Passes and prize packages worth several million over the last twelve months. At least 850 players will be taking a shot at PSPC glory. Registration is still open.

LobbyPSPC
The PSPC Lobby at the Bahamas (Pic by Neil Stoddart, PokerStars Blog)

If you build it, they will come. If you give away enough Platinum Passes, of course you will throw one heck of a poker party. PokerStars was on a mission in 2018.... pump up the PSPC and Platinum Passes. I mean, everyone who is anyone in poker got a Platinum Pass (except the lowly author of this post) in the poker industry and everyone in the poker biz has been whisked away to the Caribbean for fun in the sun and nonstop poker over the next two weeks.

PokerStars is hosting their annual sojourn to the Bahamas with the return of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. So glad that it is rebranded as the PCA again. I wonder if that suit who dared to gamble up with a rebranding is still with the company? Because straying away from the PCA brand was one of the most foolish moves in all of poker. After all, PokerStars owns the Caribbean in January.

For the last two decades it seems, the start of the new calendar year is devoted to all things poker in the Bahamas. This year is no different. Click here to see the entire PCA schedule that includes the PSPC, the Main Event, and a couple of High Roller affairs.

The 2019 PCA is off and running at the Atlantis Resort and Casino on Paradise Island in the Bahamas. It's only a short puddle jumper away from Miami, but you might as well be on another planet when you show up at the PCA. It feels like a dream. An elegant dream with lots of cocktails, while surrounded by poker players in hoodies and other casual attire. Then there's the crystal blue and turquoise waters that make the long trip worth the hassle. And the white sand that you've only seen in brochures, magazines, or on social media feeds of your favorite Instagram model that you secretly stalk. Don't forget about the oodles of rum drinks with lots of fruit you never heard of and those umbrellas. And the Kaliks. Warm, cold, or just semi-cold… it's the official beer of the PCA and the best way you can bribe poker media… buy them a six-pack of Kaliks and they will be your friend for eternity. And if you're lucky, you can catch a glimpse of your favorite German superballer or other online whizkids gambling it up at the Coral Bar Lobby. And if you finally make your way to the convention center, you will find more donks than you can shake a stick at!

This year's 2019 PCA also includes the inaugural PokerStars Players Championship. The $25,000 buy-in event does not have any juice because they locals will be shaking you down for everything else, so the suits at Stars HQ figured they'd throw everyone a bone and not charge rake.

The $25K PSPC is supposed to attract players from all over the planet, including direct buy-ins, online satellite qualifiers, and Platinum Pass winners. Even as late as Christmas, PokerStars was awarding Platinum Passes to a few lucky souls who loved poker and everyone's favorite guru Kevin Mathers.

The 2019 PCA began on Saturday at Atlantis. The 2019 PSPC kicks off on Sunday with the first day of action. You can follow along with the hijinks at PokerStars Blog. And the crew is always streaming the affair live from the front lines in Atlantis.

Watch and listen here to the play-by-play by James Hartigan and Stapes vis Twitch...

Latest news
Thursday January 17, 2019 at 2:36 am
Breaking News
2019 PCA: Chino Rheem wins $10K Main Event for $1.5 million score

The 2019 PCA Main Event Championship is in the books and American pro Chino Rheem survived a field of 865 runners to win $1.5 million. Rheem came into the final table with the lead and knocked out all five opponents en route to a quick and efficient victory in the Bahamas. Rheem picked off Daniel Strelitz heads-up for the trophy. Rheem has officially passed $10 million in career earnings.

Wednesday January 16, 2019 at 5:37 pm
2019 PCA: Chino Rheem leads Main Event final table

The 2019 PCA Main Event Championship is down to its final table and Chino Rheem is the big stack with six remaining. This year's $10K Main Event attracted 865 players. First place pays out $1,567,100. The runner up banks $951K. Canada's Scott Wellenbach is second in chips, followed by two Americans -- Brian Altman and Dan Strelitz. Vicent Bosca is repping Spain at the final table and Pavel Veksler is the short stack.

Tuesday January 15, 2019 at 7:13 pm
RIP Gavin Smith

Canadian poker pro Gavin Smith passed away in his sleep at the age of 50. Smith won a WPT title at the Mirage in 2005 and won his first WSOP bracelet in 2010. Smith banked over $6.3 million in tournaments. The magnanimous Smith was an integral part of Poker Road Radio during the peak of the online poker boom. Smith is currently ranked #11 on the all-time Canada money list.

Tuesday January 15, 2019 at 8:56 am
2019 PCA Main Event: Tommy Nguyen Leads Final 20

The 2019 PCA is in its home stretch and Chino Rheem still has chips in the Main Event. After the third day of action, the $10K Main Event went from 79 to 20 players. Tommy Nguyen bagged up the big stack with Jeff Hakim, Dan Strelitz, Matthias Eibinger, and Brian Altman round out the Top 5. First place pays out a juicy $1.5 million. Only two more days remain before they crown a champion in the Bahamas.

Friday January 11, 2019 at 4:17 pm
Breaking News
HOT !
PSPC: Spain's Roman Colillas wins $5.1 million

After five glorious day of action at the Atlantis Casino and Resort on Paradise Island in the Bahamas, PokerStars crowned a winner in the largest $25,000 tournament in history. Ramon Colillas from Spain banked $5.1 million for outlasting a field of 1.039 hopefuls at the PokerStars Players Championship. He defeated French pro Julien Martini heads-up for the victory Martini took home a little less than $3 million for a runner up share.

Thursday January 10, 2019 at 7:42 pm
PSPC: Down to 8, Scott Baumstein leads

The first-ever PokerStars Players Championship played down from 38 players to the final eight on Day 4 of action. On Day 5, they will be playing down to a champion. The top six places pay out at least $1 million with the winner banking $5.1 million. American pro Scott Baumstein is the big stack with 10.7M, followed by Marc Rivera, Julien Martini, Farid Jattin, Roman, Colillas, Jason Koonce, Talal Shakerchi, and Marc Perrault.

Tuesday January 8, 2019 at 8:08 am
PSPC: Farrid Jattin leads Day 2 with 215 to go

PokerStars threw the largest tournament in history with the $25,000 buy-in PokerStars Players Championship attracting 1,039 unique runners. The top 181 places will pay out with first place winning $5.1 million. Only 215 players remain after two full days of action. Farrid Jattin fromColombia is the chipleader. Italian pro Mustapha Kanit bagged up the second-biggest stack. Other big stacks included Brandon Adams, Griffin Benger, Athanasios Polychronopoulos, Julien Martini, Kristen Bicknell, and Talal Shakerchi.

Monday January 7, 2019 at 4:16 pm
HOT !
PSPC: Talal Shakerchi chipleader after Day 1

The PokerStars Player Championship got off to a sensational start when it passed 1,000 entries. The total is 1,014 runners. First place will pay out over $5 million and that includes an extra $1 million bonus on top. It was a Who's Who of poker at Atlantis Casino in the Bahamas for the start of the inaugural PSPC. After the first complete day of action, only 756 players remaining and The U.K.'s Talal Shakerchi is the big stack with over 420K. Registration is still open.

Thursday January 3, 2019 at 5:49 pm
Outgoing Governor Rick Snyder vetoes online gambling bill in Michigan

Republican governor Rick Snyder decided to veto a bill that would have allowed Michigan gamblers to gamble online and play online poker. Michigan missed a chance to become the fifth state in America to legalize online poker joining Nevada, New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania. Snyder cited that Michigan needed to study the data more before making a decision to authorize online gambling.

Thursday December 27, 2018 at 3:56 pm
Telex
2019 WPT UK Main Event scheduled for September 22 thru October 6

The World Poker Tour is coming to the UK in the fallof 2019! The WPT UK will be hosted at the Dusk Till Dawn Poker & Casino Nottingham. The £3,300 buy-in event also has a £1.5 million guarantee. The first of two opening flights begins online at partypoker on September 22. The first of three live opening flights begins on September 30 at Dusk Till Dawn Poker & Casino Nottingham. The WPT UK Main Event will run through October 6. For a complete schedule, click here.

Friday December 21, 2018 at 4:26 pm
Breaking News
SCOOP
2019 WSOP dates and partial schedule released

Christmas came a little early for poker enthusiasts because dates dropped for the 2019 World Series of Poker. The Rio Casino in Las Vegas will host the 50th version of the WSOP with 78 events running over 50 days starting May 28 and running through July 16. This year's special event with be the $5million guarantee Big 50, which is $500 juice free (initial) entry. The Main Event will feature three opening flights over the Fourth of July weekend.

Thursday December 20, 2018 at 4:12 pm
Isaac Haxton ships Super High Roller Bowl V for $3.6 million

Ike Haxton faded a field of 36 super ballers to win the $300,000 buy-in 2018 Super High Roller Bowl at the Aria Casino in Las Vegas. Haxton banked $3.6 million for his victory in the fifth installment of the SHRB. The American pro defeated Alex Foxen heads-up for the win. The final table for the SHR included Ali Imsirovic, Igor Kurganov, Adrian Mateos, Talal Shakerchi, and Stephen Chidwick.

Saturday December 15, 2018 at 1:50 am
PokerStars Winter Series with $40 million in guarantees

The holiday season is upon us. PokerStars will celebrate the end of the year and the holiday season with 60 events and 240 tournaments for the Winter Series starting on December 23 and running through January 7. The Winter Series has four levels with different buy-ins for players with varying bankrolls with events at Micro, Low, Medium, and High. There will be $40 million in guaranteed prize pools. The Main Event Medium and High will both have $1.5 million guarantees. Buy-ins for the Winter Series will range from $0.55 to $5,200.

Thursday December 13, 2018 at 3:51 pm
EPT Prague: Matthias Eibinger wins €50K High Roller

It's another day, another high roller. At the 2018 EPT Prague, hosted at the swanky Hilton Hotel, Matthias Eibinger from Austria outlasted 40 other players to win the €50K High Roller for a score worth €653,000. Eibinger defeated Andras Nemeth from Hungary heads up for the cash and the crown. Also at the final table were Liang Xu, Pavel Plesuv, Luc Greenwood, and Charlie Carrel. Eibinger, closing in on $5 million in winnings, is capping off the best year of his career with a big win in Prague.

Wednesday December 12, 2018 at 3:19 pm
Breaking News
FUN
100K Isolation prop bet over on $62K buyout

It was a crazy wager, but American poker pro Rich Altai won the $100,000 prop bet where he had to live in complete isolation and seclusion for 30 days. After 20 days, Australian poker pro Rory Young realized Altai was going to all the way for the win, so he negotiated a buy-out worth $62,000. Altai agreed, and he exited the sequestered room where he lived in total darkness and silence for 20 days.

Monday December 10, 2018 at 4:11 pm
Minneapolis Jim Meehan Passes Away

One of the last remaining characters in poker, Minneapolis Jim Meehan, passed away at the age of 66. The attorney and poker pro from Minnesota won a WSOP bracelet in 2003, made a couple of televised final tables during the poker boom, and banked over $1.4 million in career earnings.

Saturday December 8, 2018 at 12:53 am
FUN
Crypto tanking, Bitcoin prices hit year lows

Bitcoin, Ethereum and other cryptocurrencies are hitting lows for the year. Current prices are similar to August 2017 levels, shortly after the 2017 World Series of Poker ended and numerous poker pros were heavily vested in crypto. Will the drastic drop see a significant number of crypto-vested poker players return to the daily grind? Which notables will come out of retirement after stepping away? Or is it time to borrow money from Timex or Johnny Bax and buy as much BTC as you can?

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Tournaments Club Poker
6-MAX
$2.20
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Thursday January 24, 2019 at 8:04 pm
$125 added
6-MAX
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Thursday January 31, 2019 at 8:04 pm
$125 added
6-MAX
$2.20
Big Poker League
Thursday February 7, 2019 at 8:04 pm
$125 added
6-MAX
$2.20
Big Poker League
Thursday February 14, 2019 at 8:04 pm
$125 added
6-MAX
$2.20
Big Poker League
Thursday February 21, 2019 at 8:04 pm
$125 added