Posts Tagged ‘WPT’

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

I have referred on many occasions to the vast sums of money that can be made playing poker. It never ceases to amaze me that a player can come in ninth in the WSOP Main Event and wind up winning $1 million. When can you ever place ninth in anything and walk away a millionaire? Or turn the $100 you walked in with into $5000 in one night?

But I never thought about how many losers there are in the game, especially among professional poker players. It seemed too obvious to mention – clearly for every big winner there have to be a ton of losers. But it’s not just about the percentages, or about losers on a particular night or in a particular high-stakes tournament. I’m thinking about serious, highly ranked poker players who have gone broke . . . and never came back from that.

In fact, according to a recent article by Alan Schoonmaker in Card Player Magazine , “If you’re a pro, you have a much higher probability of dying broke than members of other professions, including people who earn much less than you’re winning now.”

Yes, there are many pros that were extremely successful; former WPT and WSOP champions and bracelet winners like Johnny Moss, Stu Ungar, Dave ‘Devilfish’ Ulliot and Gavin Smith to name a few, that not only lost it all and spent their final years penniless, but they also died broke.

How could that happen? Why didn’t they always save a portion of their winnings for their old age? Why weren’t they at least eligible to receive social security and Medicare?

The answer, according to Schoonmaker, is too much self-confidence, otherwise known as arrogance. That’s when you ignore the rules, thinking you don’t have to save money or pay taxes like normal people, believing instead that there will ALWAYS be another huge pot to count on every time you take a seat at a poker table.

Sometimes, there isn’t.

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

Exotic -sounding places like Macau, Montenegro and Malta represent just a few destinations for big-name professional poker players to travel to, sit down at the poker tables and win big. With poker becoming even more of a big deal all over the globe (consider the recently-formed GPL-India, GPL-China and GPL-Brazil) that’s a lot of frequent flier miles!

Take the 2017 Triton Super High Roller Series, for example. The Triton series began in January 2016 as part of the WPT National Philippines. That event broke records for WPT as its highest buy-in event ever, at US $200,000 per entry. With 52 entries, my boy (GPL team member of the LA Sunset) Fedor ( @CrownUpGuy) Holz came away with the title and a whopping prizepool of US $3,072,748.

Naturally, when I was looking over the current SHR event happening now in Macau, I couldn’t help but notice that Fedor Holz had made the final table again. In fact, he’s in second place with 4,325,000 chips while the chip leader is Spanish phenom Adrian Mateos, with 4,785,000. Up for grabs is the top prize of $2.872 million.

The rest of the final table consists of Dietrich Fast (3,370,000), Kahle Burns (2,625,000), Timothy Adams (2,185,000), start of Day 2 chipleader Stephen Chidwick (1,395,000), Isaac Haxton (1,075,000), and Poker Hall of Fame member John Juanda (990,000).

And this is just one final table at one tournament. Poker is being played non-stop, everywhere (including Montenegro where the second in the 2017 Triton Super High Roller Series took place, with the win by Manig Loeser from Germany.)

Follow the poker players and you’ll see the world. You might even be able to point out Montenegro and Macau on the map!

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Pocket Bullets ParisJim “Pocket Bullets” Paris

Although this happened almost a year ago we thought it was worth a small walk through the memory lane of the Poker World to remind us again what a bad beat looks like. Back on the 30th of October 2016, at the Thunder Valley Casino in Lincoln California, during the “Poker Night in America” Cash Game Season 5 event , Bart Hanson,  with a very strong K A  ran into Quad Fours of billionaire Chamath Palihapitiya

For those of you who may not know these players here is a bit about each.

Chamath Palihapitiya is a venture capitalist born in Sri Lanka, raised in Canada, and has worked for much of his life in Silicon Valley. He made it really big after joining Facebook to lead their Mobile and International user growth. He became Facebook’s longest tenured senior executive and amassed a fortune rumored to be worth $1 billion. Palihaptiya is an owner and board member of the Golden State Warriors. He has three WSOP and two WPT cashes for a total of $175,801. In 2011, he finished 101st out of 6,865 entries in the World Series of Poker’s Main Event.

Bart Hanson is a Poker coach, commentator, CrushLivePoker.com training site owner, and an excellent Professional Cash game trainer. Hanson has been producing strategy content for over seven years. He first started on PokerRoad back in 2007, moved to Deuces Cracked and has been producing a weekly poker strategy podcast ever since. Besides all that, he has commentated on several network poker shows including WSOP final tables and is the regular co-host of “Live at the Bike.” He has observed and analyzed more poker hands than almost anyone else in the poker industry. Hanson has cashed for a total of more than $690,381.

And so lastly,  for your enjoyment is the video capturing all the thrill of victory and the very nasty and painful agony of defeat. That’s the game folks; always expect the unexpected at the Poker Tables.

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

I asked my husband, Jim “Pocket Bullets” Paris, if there’s a time limit on the players’ action in his weekly poker game. He said no, unless someone is obviously wasting time on every hand, but that rarely happens.

But time has definitely been a factor on the professional circuit and stalling has become a concern recently in live tournaments, notably the World Series Of Poker. When a player takes too long to act, the game slows down, and with many of the coveted audience of millennials and GenZ’ers already thinking that poker is too slow to interest them, that’s NOT a good thing.

So, to pick up the pace to appeal to a broader  audience, similar to the concept behind the Global Poker League (and by the way, where are you Alex Dreyfus?) and partially in response to the controversial slow-betting ‘speech play” of  William Kassouf in last year’s WSOP Main Event, we saw a new clock rule at this year’s WSOP.

The two-minute rule was eliminated. (The old rule was that someone could call the clock after a “reasonable amount of time, which was actually two minutes. Then the dealer had to call for the floor manager. The floor manager slowly responded, walking over to ask the dealer if the player had a “reasonable amount of time.” If he answered yes, the floor manager gave the player another minute to make a decision on his hand!) That’s some serious time-wasting!

The new WSOP rule isn’t a great improvement. Now, players can call the clock whenever they want to. The same process occurs between the dealer and floor manager. The floor manager can then give the player anywhere between 0 and 30 seconds to make a decision.

Some of the older, iconic players love the clock. In fact, Daniel Negreanu has stated that he doesn’t like playing games without a shot clock and has reduced his No-Limit Hold’Em schedule until the WSOP institutes one. He’s not alone; a vast majority of players like the shot clock, especially those who also play online and are accustomed to a much faster pace.

The World Poker Tour, however, has heard the message loud and clear. They have announced that the WPT will be using a 30-second Action Clock during all Main Tour events, to be utilized one full table off the money bubble and remain in play until the conclusion of the tournament. Players will be limited to 30 seconds for each action, but will also receive time extension chips for use during difficult moments in the later stages of the tournament.

As Matt Savage, WPT Executive Tour Director, stated, “The World Poker Tour is proud to be the first to implement the Action Clock across its Main Events. He thinks that speeding up the game is a no-brainer.

What do you think?… Send us your thoughts, comments or questions!