Millions of poker fans look forward to the WSOP every year, and this year is no exception. In fact, with the elimination of the November Nine, the live coverage by ESPN (of the Main Event in July) and the promise of streaming coverage throughout by pokercentral.com, we were even more excited than usual.
So, this has been our experience so far. We quickly learned that pokercentral is offering streaming through their new subscription service, PokerGo. That meant we, and millions of others, had to sign up and pay $10 for a month or $99 for a year. Not bad, but not what we had been led to believe. Plus, it took us about six tries to get the code online to match the code on our TV.
Anyway, on our first night trying to watch Day 4 of the most expensive event on the WSOP schedule, the $111,111 HR for One Drop, we finally had to pause it with two hours to go. The final table was stacked with great players and we were pumped to watch the last two hours. Unfortunately, the navigation was totally off the next night so we couldn’t go back to watch the final two hours – all we could find was a 30-minute highlight video.
The third night (by then we already knew that Polk had beaten Elky in Heads-up play) we figured out the navigation (or PokerGo fixed it; we’ll never know) and we got to watch the handsome Italian, Dario Sammartino bust out in 3rd place, winning $1.6milion, and then the super-charming Doug Polk killing it with some gutsy poker. Second place for Elky was a cool $2.2 mill and Polk won his third WSOP gold bracelet and a whopping $3.6+million.
Meanwhile, I just tried to sign into PokerGO on my laptop as I did yesterday and it tells me that no one with that email address (the one we used for the last three days) is a member of PokerGO. Beyond frustrating. On the third try, it must have recognized me and I was in. Nothing streaming live until tonight but that gave me the opportunity to go to their “On Demand” category and catch some fun moments from a few other events.
I watched Day 4 of what was supposed to be a 3-day event, the $10,000 Omaha Hi/Lo Heads Up, mainly because my all-time favorite, “Real Kid Poker” was going for his seventh bracelet against Abe Mosseri. Both love to play mixed games, which puts me at a real disadvantage; I just learned the rules for Texas Hold’em two years ago so these variants confuse the hell outta me. Anyway, it took about ten minutes for Mosseri to win the bracelet, but Negreanu had a second place finish after a third place the day before so he’s still doing incredibly well.
Then I caught some of the $10,000 Heads Up Event – poker in its purest form, where one player survives the single-elimination event with 128 players in the field. The commentators said the heads-up event was one of the most prestigious at the WSOP, so I decided to watch 22-year old Adrian Mateos face off against 42-year old Negreanu on Day 1, right after DNegs had finished playing in the $10,000 Omaha Hi/Lo Heads Up. This was a really tough first match-up, Daniel didn’t get many good cards and he lost (gracefully and with humor) in the first round.
On the other hand, Adrian Mateos went on to knock off five more players to go up against 70-year-old John Smith in the final round. Smith had been the runner-up in this event last year; I watched his Day 3 match against Ryan Riess and could see that he was a formidable opponent. Nevertheless, Smith ultimately lost to Mateos to be runner-up again. And, Mateos’ win made him the youngest player ever to win three bracelets by the age of 22.
PokerGo has great coverage and extremely knowledgeable commentators and after a few initial glitches has worked out well for us. If you want to know all the results of every event, you can go to pokernews.com or WSOP.com. No point in us reinventing the wheel!