Posts Tagged ‘Sam Trickett’

Lynn "Queen of Hearts" ParisLynn “Queen of Hearts” Paris

One of the nicest trends happening in the poker world recently is the desire to give back.  Of course, there have always been charitable players, but for the most part they were individuals who donated a portion of their earnings to causes they believed in. Phil Hellmuth, to name just one, has been involved with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Susan G. Komen Foundation, the Peace Thru Sports Foundation of Shimon Peres and several other charities.

With the poker boom came poker organizations, like PokerStars and their players, making substantive contributions every year to various worthy causes, from  tsunami relief in 2004 to helping the victims of the devastating earthquake that ripped apart Haiti in 2010.

One Drop, a charity dedicated to providing access to safe drinking water around the world, received tremendous attention in the poker world and beyond, especially in 2012 during the Big One for One Drop heads-up match between Antonio Esfandiari and Sam Trickett. $111,111 from each entry went to One Drop, totaling $5.3 million, the single biggest donation any poker event had ever produced. In fact, over the last five years over $10 million has been raised by the annual One Drop tournaments at the WSOP.

Adriano Mannino Since 2014, however, there has been an increase in charitable donations across the poker world. One of the primary reasons for that is REG, or Raising for Effective Giving.  Three poker superstars, Liv Boeree, Igor Kurganov, and Philipp Gruissem, already involved with effective altruism, pitched the idea of spreading the word to the poker community and soon REG was born, with Adriano Mannino named REG Chairman.

REG takes donations and distributes them to groups that are the most effective in reducing suffering around the world. Briefly, REG use scientific facts and rational decision-making, collaborations with researchers, think tanks, and analysts, to find the most effective charitable opportunities, those that help the most people possible for the amount of money raised. By doing so, donations become more cost effective by increasing the number of people helped per unit of money donated. In other words, they know how to get the most bang for their bucks.

Every day, more poker players are pledging to participate in REG, and it is quickly becoming a preferred way for them to donate to charitable organizations around the world.

REG has always had the goal to establish a “culture of giving” in the poker community, one that extends beyond the occasional charity-specific poker tournament. Nevertheless, spokesperson Boeree, noting the incredible success of One Drop, says that in 2017;  “ I really think one of the most biggest, and also the most fun ways I can think of doing is having a couple of these big charity tournaments. You’ve seen the fantastic success of One Drop, some of the events PokerStars have. We have the contacts to do that, we have the locations. That’s what we want to knuckle down and do – one or two really fun, prestigious—probably more high roller-oriented charity tournaments.”

Whether it’s a few major charity tournaments or a new way of life for players, charities around the world are benefiting from the generous nature of the poker community.

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Texas Poker Store

Queen of Hearts Paris

By: Queen of Hearts Paris

As the second week of online GPL matches continues, I have found myself extremely pleased that I made the decision to follow this new, highly innovative form of team poker.  I had approached it tentatively, thinking it would be fun to write a few blogs about it and then move on, but that isn’t what happened. I got hooked!

Queen of Hearts ParisSo, you are now looking at my current work set-up: laptop for working, including writing blogs, and second screen to follow the 6-Max and Heads-Up matches when they’re live streaming on www.globalpokerleague.com  or www.twitch.tv/gpl on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. Most people who know me will find this hard to believe, since I have never been the poker player in the family and never particularly enjoyed watching poker being played, live or online. My husband is the poker enthusiast, which is one of the reasons we created the Texas Poker Store four years ago. He’s the one who plays in a friendly poker game once a week and online most nights. He’s the one who has gone to Vegas to “cover” the WSOP Final Nine each year (at least that’s what he tells me) and he has the photos to prove it.

Anyway, yesterday, I was watching a Heads-Up match between Kitty Kuo of the San Francisco Rush and Joao Samoa of the Sao Paulo Metropolitans ( the end result of the 6-Max match among a member of each team from the Americas Conference ) I started to get deeply involved in one of the most unusual and entertaining aspects of the GPL: the live webcams inviting the viewing audience into the minds, strategies and personalities of the players. It was fun listening to Kuo saying “Ooooh; I want to win” and then screaming for joy as she won the match for her team.

And it’s been fascinating to hear other players share their thoughts with us. Xuan Liu was narrating her every move and observed, “So much fun when you’re getting good hands. I hope I didn’t jinx myself.” She didn’t, winning points for the Montreal Nationals. Sam Trickett, of the London Royals had a very different approach, remaining stoic and unemotional (even as he let us see his dog!) in his match against Randy Lew of the Hong Kong Stars. Lew revealed so much of his thought process and showed his emotions throughout, finally taking the win in the rubber match. And then, as I tried desperately to write this simple blog, I got totally caught up in a never-ending Heads-Up between Dominik Nitsche of the Berlin Bears (it seems all the Bears love to entertain and inform the audience) and Vladimir Troyanovskiy of the Moscow Wolverines. In fact, that’s when I took it too far and wound up starting an entire meme in the chat room based on my public observation of how hot he was. He finally won, giving the Wolverines some big points.

Somewhere in the midst of all of that I had an epiphany. I understood why Alex Dreyfus believed he could sportify poker, because he had already reeled me in. I’m a huge sports fan, mostly football and basketball, so I know what it feels like to root for your team.  And I also know that even people who don’t follow college basketball at all still get involved in March Madness. Dreyfus understood that. He knew if he could just get the attention of non-poker fans by being innovative, giving them teams to pull for and personalities to attract and excite us (not to mention that L.A., making the very last wildcard pick, added the wildly popular actor/poker player, Aaron Paul) that the Global Poker League might just make a huge impact in the poker world.  I think, within the next couple of years, he’s going to wind up being right.

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Pocket Bullets ParisBy: Pocket Bullets Paris

Sometimes you just have to go “Hmmmm, I wonder what would have happened if I had invested in learning how to play poker instead of….” Of course, you quickly realize that although it’s never too late; you just may have to face a hell of a lot of tougher and younger competition.

It seems as if every year younger and younger players get into the mix and often come into it from the “online”  world of digital poker. They have already played thousands of hands dealt to them on their computer screens, electronic pads, or even their cellular phones. In many cases, they became proficient way before they ever sat down at a live table with live players. Their usual aggressive online strategies sometimes destroy their chances, but often it goes the other way, and they soon find their way around reads, tells, and all the other nuances of live games and come back to rake in all the poker chips.

Here is a list of some of today’s current youngest players with more than $4 million in winnings from live games as well as online games:

Sam Trickett – 28
Young Poker Millionaires $19,696,445

Chris Moorman – 29
$16,000,000 +

Martin Jacobson – 27
$14,930,636+

Jonathan Duhamel – 27
$12,786,360+

Jason Mercier – 28
$10,000,000

Pius Heinz – 25
$8,979,848

Ryan Riess – 24
$8,824,423

Jesse Sylvia – 27
$5,718,763

Jake Cody – 26
$4,068,776

Now, a final table with these nine poker superstars, before they turn 30, would be one hell of a game that I’d love to watch live from the rails. I know there are many more players out there that could be included in this list, but there are just too many of them to add here.

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Pocket Bullets ParisBy: Pocket Bullets Paris

The Eurythmics said “Sweet dreams are made of this, Who am I to disagree?” I totally agree but my version is slightly different. Mine goes like this: “Poker dreams are made of this, who are you to disagree? Travel the world and the seven seas playing poker and you may find what you’re looking for.”

These guys have certainly had their poker dreams come true.

Daniel NegreanuDaniel Negreanu the “Poker Kid” has won six World Series of Poker bracelets and two World Poker Tour championship titles. As of 2014, his poker dreams have provided him with live tournament winnings that exceed $29,750,000

Antonio “The Magician” Esfandiari, born Amir Esfandiari, was a professional magician, and now is known for his elaborate chip tricks and his impressive poker earnings. He has won two World Poker Tour championships and three World Series of Poker bracelets in his career, including the “Big One for One Drop” in 2012, a $1,000,000 buy-in tournament benefiting the One Drop Foundation. As of 2014, his total live tournament winnings exceed $26,250,000

Phil IveyPhil Ivey  is another dreamer who never let go of his poker dreams and became one of the top money-making professional poker players. He has won nine World Series of Poker bracelets, one World Poker Tour title and appeared at nine World Poker Tour final tables. As of 2014, Ivey’s total live tournament winnings exceed $21,400,000.

Erik Seidel was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2010 and continued dreaming to amass, as of 2014, total live tournament winnings exceeding $20,800,000.

Sam Trickett is another dreamer turned professional poker player who, as of February 25, 2014, had total live tournament winnings of  $19,877,332, placing him 5th on the all-time poker money list.

Phil Hellmuth with Pocket Bullets Paris at the WSOP

Phil Hellmuth with Pocket Bullets Paris at the WSOP

Phillip Hellmuth, the “Poker Brat,”  dropped out of the University of Wisconsin to pursue his dreams of a poker career. As of 2014, one could say that his dreams paid off. He has total winnings of more than $18,175,000 and has earned an incredible 13 WSOP bracelets. He still dreams of being the greatest poker player of all-time. By many people’s standards he has already seen that dream come true at the poker tables.

There are a lot more players who have traveled the world and the seven seas looking for something, and who have found that what they were looking for was the right cards, at the right time, at the poker tables. Many of them, men and women, too many to mention here,  certainly know that poker dreams are made of this. Who are we to disagree?

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