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WPT Adds to Summer Las Vegas Tournament Poker Scene With Venetian Stop; Seminole Hard Rock Tampa Dates Also Announced

April 20, 2022 0 comments
The WPT announced a return to the Venetian in Las Vegas this summer as well as another stop heading to Seminole Tampa in Florida.

Players looking for even more poker in Las Vegas this summer received some welcome news on Tuesday. The World Poker Tour announced another stop on the tour’s 20th anniversary season with the $5,000 WPT Venetian beginning July 12.

The tournament comes with a $4 million guarantee, the largest ever for a WPT event at the Venetian. The event adds to an already packed summer schedule in Las Vegas.

“We look forward to continuing to build upon our storied history of premier tournament poker at the Venetian Resort this summer,” tour CEO Adam Pliska said in a news release. “I am confident that players will be impressed by our joint efforts with the Venetian to make this event bigger and better than ever.”

In other WPT news, the tour also announced a stop at the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa in Florida later this year. 

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More WPT action on tap at Venetian

Beyond the championship event, players will find additional WPT events from July 7-17 as part of the Venetian DeepStack Championship Poker Series. That action begins with a one-day $1,100 buy-in event.

Other notable tournaments include a $2,400 three-day event beginning July 8. Another single-day $1,100 tournament follows on July 11.

Participants in all WPT events in the DeepStack Championship Series are eligible for the WPT Player of the Festival leaderboard. The winner earns a $1,100 WPT Passport, which can be used in other WPT events. 

“We’ve created another exciting summer for poker players at The Venetian Resort,” Venetian tournament director Tommy LaRosa said. “The DeepStack Championship Poker Series is a must-play series every summer and adding four WPT events furthers our commitment to offering our players as many options as possible when planning their summers in Las Vegas.”

The most recent WPT Venetian tournament ran in July 2021. The $5,000 Main Event approached 1,200 entries for a prize pool of over $5.5 million. Chad Eveslage of Muncie, Indiana, scored the title for $910,370.

Since the first Main Tour stop at the property in 2019, WPT events have cleared millions of dollars in prize pools. WPT’s $5,000 events in March and July of 2021 cleared $4 million and $5 million prize pools, respectively.

Beyond traditional satellites at the property, players can qualify for the WPT Venetian at ClubWPT. This is the tour’s subscription online poker site, which will award two $7,000 Main Event packages in April.

A look at the WPT Venetian Las Vegas scene in 2021. (photo courtesy WPT)

Even more Vegas poker at Venetian this summer

The WPT adds to a hearty DeepStack Series running May 2 – July 31 for three straight months of poker action. The WPT now becomes a major part of that.

The tour’s addition only adds even more Vegas poker action this summer. With the World Series of Poker wrapping up July 21, the WPT Venetian offers another opportunity for a nice score for players exiting the Main Event, which runs July 3-16.

The entire DeepStack Series features buy-ins from $300 to $10,000 with mostly No Limit Hold’em events. A few Omaha tournaments are also on the schedule.

Players will find plenty of six-and seven-figure guarantees with two Mid-States Poker Tour events also playing out. The first of those, a $1,600 NLHE, starts on June 6 with a $2 million guarantee. A $1,100 NLHE is then set for June 16 with a $1.5 million guarantee.

The Venetian’s $1,600 DeepStack championship also runs June 29 – July 3 with $1.5 million guaranteed. For a complete look at the series, see USPoker’s Summer Tournament Guide.

Tour also heading back to Florida

Three-time WPT champion Brian Altman after his 2021 win at the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Tampa. (photo courtesy WPT)

Along with a return to the Venetian, the tour also announced another event heading to Seminole Hard Rock Tampa.

The event marks the seventh time the property has hosted a tour event. The series runs Aug. 25 – Sept. 6 with the $3,500 main event set for Sept. 2-7.

“We are pleased to be continuing the successful tradition of WPT events at Seminole Hard Rock Tampa,” Pliska said. “Feedback from players has been overwhelmingly positive and this year’s event promises to be one of the most popular events of the season.”

In June, the Tampa championship prize pool topped $3.7 million and broke multiple records for a Seminole event. Brian Altman took the top spot for his third WPT title.

This event also features a Player of the Festival leaderboard, with a $1,100 WPT Prime Passport on the line.

“Our players have always shown enthusiasm for WPT events,” Seminole Tampa director of poker Pablo Perez said. “It is going to be an exciting summer of poker here in Tampa, and players should look forward to the release of the full tournament schedule.”

High Roller: Ali Imsirovic Earns PokerGO Player of the Year Title; Tour Kicks Off New Season at Venetian

January 4, 2022 0 comments
The third annual Global Poker Awards returned last Friday with poker superstar Ali Imsirovic earning Player of the Year.

The PokerGO Tour (presented by Guaranteed Rate) recently wrapped up the 2021 season with Ali Imsirovic scoring the Player of the Year title. The high roller regular has been one of the most successful players in poker over the last few years.

“It still feels pretty surreal, to be honest,” Imsirovic said in a news release. “I never thought I would accomplish something of this magnitude in poker. Next, the goal is to just keep trying to get better and solidify and keep proving that I belong here.”

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A dominating year

Over the last year, Imsirovic dominated at the poker tables. That record has included 14 victories, 34 cashes, and more than $6 million in live tournament winnings.

Imsirovic finished the year with 4,364 points, nearly 1,300 points ahead of the next closest competitor. His 2021 wins came on several big tournament stages including:

  • Aria High Rollers
  • Venetian High Roller
  • US Poker Open
  • PokerGO Cup
  • Super High Roller Bowl Europe
  • WPT Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open High Roller

The poker phenom is originally from Bosnia before his family moved to Vancouver, Washington. Taking the POY title brings an additional $200,000 in prize money for Imsirovic.

Australia’s Michael Addamo finished in second place and earned a $100,000 prize. A late surge during the World Series of Poker vaulted him into the runner-up position ahead of Sean Perry.

Perry had been Imsirovic’s closest competition for most of 2021 but ultimately finished third on for an extra $50,000.

This marked the first year of the PokerGO Tour. The season produced more than 17,600 entries across 143 tournaments. Buy-ins ranged from $10,000 up to $300,000 with more than $262 million in prize money awarded and 87 unique winners.

Rok Gostisa takes Tour Championship title

The PokerGO Tour closed out the season on Dec. 21 in Las Vegas with Slovenia’s Rok Gostisa winning the $50,000 PokerGO Tour Championship. The tournament was the final event of the inaugural season.

Gostisa topped a field of 46 entries to win $689,100. Michael Gathy finished runner-up for $598,900. When the final table began, Gostisa needed to rally from the short stack.

“I didn’t expect to win because I came in seven out of seven, so it feels amazing,” Gostisa said.

Rok Gostisa celebrates after winning the PokerGO Tour Championship for $689,100. (photos courtesy PokerGO)

The victory became the largest of Gostisa’s live poker career, capping a breakout year. Prior to 2021, he didn’t have a year with more than $74,000 in live tournament winnings. The PokerGO win helped him reach $1.6 million in live winnings for the year.

“I was basically just playing online and because of COVID I didn’t travel,” Gostisa said. “This year has been going well, so I’m really happy about how it turned out.”

2021 PokerGO Tour Championship results

  1. Rok Gostisa – $689,100
  2. Michael Gathy – $598,900
  3. Sergi Reixach – $345,000
  4. Jake Schindler – $253,000
  5. Jacob Ferro – $184,000
  6. Ren Lin – $138,000
  7. Dominik Nitsche – $92,000

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Second season gets underway with addition

With one season now in the books, year two of the PokerGO Tour kicks off Jan. 5 at the Venetian in Las Vegas. The property hosts several events in the first season and is running four high roller tournaments from Jan. 5-8.

Along with the events at the Venetian, the first half of the season includes the new Stairway To Millions, PokerGO Cup, PokerGO Heads-Up Championship, Aria High Rollers, Super High Roller Bowl Russia (presented by Luxon Pay), US Poker Open, and the Super High Roller Bowl VII.

“The inaugural season of the PokerGO Tour awarded more than a quarter of a billion dollars in prize money and surpassed all expectations,” PokerGO President Mori Eskandani said.

“The sport of poker demands that we celebrate those that perform at the pinnacle of competition. In the PokerGO Tour’s second season, we are ready to raise the bar and continue to showcase poker’s elite at the game’s highest stakes.”

The tour features only tournaments with buy-ins of $10,000 or greater and ranks the game’s elite players. In 2022, players at the top of the leaderboard will find something new.

The top six point earners will face off in a special end-of-season tournament. Starting chip stacks are determined by the number of points earned throughout the season.

Many 2022 events will be streamed live on the PokerGO platform, available on mobile devices, web browsers, and smart TVs.

BACK IN ACTION: WPT Heading to Venetian in Las Vegas as Live Poker Slowly Returns

December 31, 2020 0 comments
The WPT has announced its return to the Venetian in 2021.

After months of postponed tournaments, the World Poker Tour is returning to the live poker felt. The tour announced this week that Season XVIII will continue with the WPT Venetian from March 5-9 in Las Vegas.

The $5,000 event comes with a $1.5 million guarantee and is the second tour event at the venue. The last Venetian event was held during Season XVII in March 2019.

“We are excited for the return of the World Poker Tour to The Venetian,” Venetian tournament director Tommy LaRosa said. “We strive to provide our players with as many options as possible and have been working throughout the last year to deliver the great poker experience our players have come to expect, but in a Venetian clean way.”

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WPT returns with 2 events so far on 2021 schedule

With the Venetian, the WPT now has two events back on the Main Tour schedule. The $3,500 Lucky Hearts Poker Open is set for Jan. 22-26 at Florida’s Seminole Hard Rock with a $1 million guarantee.

Both events offer a look at the bounce back of the live poker scene. In announcing the Venetian tournament, the tour and property stressed their commitment to safety during the pandemic.

The Venetian operates under its “Clean Commitment” program, featuring 800 initiatives to minimize risk for guests, players, and employees. The poker room safety measures include:

  • all players sanitizing their hands before sitting down at a table
  • cleaning protocols to address the ongoing sanitization of chips, cards, and shufflers
  • transparent dividers between players
  • face masks worn in all areas per Nevada regulations 

Players can expect a traditional WPT experience in the Venetian and Lucky Hearts. Winners earn Hublot WPT Player of the Year points and add their names to the Mike Sexton Champions Cup.

The winner also earns a $15,000 seat to the season-ending Baccarat Crystal WPT Tournament of Champions. More Season XVIII events are expected to be announced at a later date.

The tour also still has three final tables left to play at the HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas. Delays have left the final six players in the LA Poker Classic, Borgata Winter Poker Open, and Gardens Poker Championship in limbo. Those events will be filmed for broadcast on the FOX Sports regional networks.

WPTDeepStacks events also added to Venetian

Along with a Main Tour event heading to the Venetian, WPTDeepStacks is also heading to the property in 2021. The WPT’s lower buy-in tour kicks off the new year with a $1,600 event from Jan. 29 – Feb. 1.

That event is part of the Venetian’s DeepStack Showdown Series and features a $500,000 guarantee. The entire festival offers more than $1 million in guarantees and begins on Jan. 18. A second DeepStacks event will be announced at a later date 

Players in the Venetian event will be eligible for the DeepStacks North America Player of the Year race. That comes with $15,000 in prizes and the winner earns a $3,000 package toward the WPTDeepStacks Championship.

“The World Poker Tour returns to live WPT Main Tour events in Las Vegas at the Venetian and to add another member to the WPT Champions Club,” WPT vice president of global tour management Angelica Hael said in a news release.

“All parties expect a strong turnout to support three of the best brands in poker in the WPT, WPTDeepStacks, and Venetian. We look forward to a great event in a safe playing environment thanks to the hard work from the Venetian team.”

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WPT gears back up after months of online events

While live WPT tournaments may be coming back, the company has been anything but quiet. The tour has focused more on online poker through co-branding with partypoker and its own ClubWPT sweepstakes poker site.

WPT and party have partnered on several major online events in recent months. Some of those have included Main Tour tournaments. In the US, that meant the first Main Tour online event available to American players. 

The $3,500 Online Poker Open was held Dec. 27-29 and attracted 395 entries for a $1.3 million prize pool. The event was held on the partypoker US Network in New Jersey with Soheb Porbandarwala taking the title for $239,820.

Soheb Porbandarwala won the $3,500 WPT Online Poker Open on the partypoker US Network.
Soheb Porbandarwala won the $3,500 WPT Online Poker Open this week on the partypoker US Network, marking the first online Main Tour event for US players. (photo courtesy WPT)

Online poker continues to surge, but the tour’s upcoming Las Vegas and Florida events show live poker’s revival. In Las Vegas, Bally’s held its inaugural “Back in Action” poker tournament series recently.

A few other casinos around the country have also begun adding tournament series in recent months. The World Series of Poker also held the live Main Event final table on Monday.

The WPT adds to this growing trend and many poker players are happy to see events returning.

* Lead image courtesy WPT/Joe Giron

BACK IN BUSINESS: Venetian Launches First Major Las Vegas Live Tournament Series Since Casino Shutdowns

August 18, 2020 0 comments
The Venetian has launched the first post-pandemic major poker tournament series in Las Vegas.

Online poker has boomed since major tournament series shut down earlier this year because of the Coronavirus pandemic. At least one Las Vegas property is dipping its toes back in the tournament pool.

The Venetian announced this week that it would be running its DeepStack Showdown from Sept. 7-27. The series features 32 events with a total guarantee of $400,000.

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Another step for live poker in Las Vegas post-pandemic shutdown

The Venetian reopened its poker room on June 5 and shifted to eight-handed play in August. Players must still wear masks and Plexiglass dividers are placed between players.

 The property has been running daily tournaments in recent weeks. However, the DeepStack Showdown becomes the first major Las Vegas tournament series since the COVID-19 pandemic.

The series comes at a time when some casinos haven’t reopened poker rooms at all. Venetian tournament director Tommy LaRosa says players can expect a safe poker environment.

The property has put in place the Venetian Clean” commitment in response to the pandemic. The program includes 800 initiatives to enhance safety and minimize risk for our guests and employees.

“In the poker room, we require all players to sanitize their hands before sitting down at a table, so players will find hand sanitizer stations throughout the room,” LaRosa says.

“In addition, we are frequently wiping down the tables, chairs, plexiglass dividers, hard surfaces, and sanitizing the chips and cards. We continue to make changes that enhance our protocols to insure compliance and accountability.”

Part of the new protocols includes the temporary elimination of food service in the poker room. Tours like the World Series of Poker and World Poker Tour remain on hiatus and many will be watching to see how things turn out at the Venetian.

What does the Venetian have planned during the Showdown?

The Venetian is taking a measured approach to the latest series. Guarantees are about 50% less than events prior to March and the shutdown.

Despite that, the room has seen nice action since reopening. Poker room organizers are interested to see how the Showdown performs.

“Our one-day poker tournaments have seen tremendous support even with lower guarantees since we resumed on July 24,” LaRosa says. “We evaluate each DeepStack poker series and make adjustments as participation dictates.

“Players can expect the value, comfort, prize pools, experienced staff, and safety they have always known and experienced at The Venetian. We strive to provide guests and players with the experience they know and love, and we are encouraged by the excitement of our players.”

Players heading to the Venetian will find two daily events during the week that’s beefed up to three on Sundays. Buy-ins range from $125 to $400 with guarantees from $2,000 to $100,000.

Most events are No Limit Hold’em with a few Omaha tournaments mixed in. The $400 MonsterStack highlights the series and comes with a $100,000 guarantee.

That event kicks off the first of four starting flights on Sept. 23. For a complete schedule, click here.

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Casino pays out huge bad beat jackpot

The Venetian already made some news recently with a massive bad beat jackpot awarded at the poker room.

On a board of 6♥78, poker players Adam Lister and Yusuke Sawauchi got into a huge pot. The game was $1/3 No Limit Hold’em and both players put it all in after the river.

Lister noted on Twitter that it took a bit to realize what had actually happened.

 

Lister ended up losing the pot with 45 to Yusuke’s 910. However, the unlikely straight flush over straight flush saw Lister take home $166,000.

His opponent added $83,000 to his bankroll. Six other players at the table received $13,834 – not a bad payday all around.

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The Venetian Releases DeepStack Championship Poker Series Schedule

March 8, 2018 0 comments
Venetian DeepStacks Extravaganza III

One of the biggest summer poker series in Las Vegas, Nevada is on the books for 2018. The Venetian DeepStack Championship Poker schedule features 150 events and more than $31 million in guarantees between May 14 and July 29. Players can expect a smorgasbord of events from the $200 buy-in level all the way up to $5,000. No Limit Hold’em dominates the schedule with Bounty, Big Blind Ante and everything in-between.

According to Venetian Tournament Director Tommy LaRosa, the $31 million in guarantees is what jumps out among the legion of tournaments.

“My goal was to create a schedule of can’t-miss poker tournaments that the players want to see and ultimately participate in,” LaRosa said. “The $31 million in guaranteed tournament prize pools is what stands out the most. It’s either the largest or close to the largest total guarantee ever offered.”

Venetian and MSPT expand partnership

The lone foothold for the Mid-States Poker Tour in Las Vegas is at The Venetian. The series plays branded events across the year. This summer, that schedule is expanded to five tournaments all of which include a live-streamed final table.

Buy-in levels for these events are $600, $1,100, $1,600, $3,500, and $5,000. The minimum guarantee is $1 million. Formerly, the $1,100 event was the only MSPT event on the schedule. This year’s guarantee for that tournament is a whopping $3,500,000.

LaRosa looks forward to what the live streaming aspect of final tables will do for the Venetian DeepStack series. This is the introduction of live streams to The Venetian’s repertoire of tournaments.

“This summer, The Venetian Poker Room and Mid-States Poker Tour team up for five events at various buy-in levels. All of these events will have ‘live’ reporting by the MSPT team for at least a portion of the event, and all of these Final Tables will be ‘live’ streamed at msptpoker.com.”

New convention space

The days of cramming thousands of players into The Venetian Poker Room and surrounding sportsbook are gone. This year, 103 tables are available in the Sands Expo Convention Center starting on Saturday, May 26. With up to four events running per day in the heart of the summer, players can look forward to maximized space and little to no lines for alternates.

Bring on the big blind ante

Players want the big blind ante in their events and The Venetian offers it in 16 tournaments this summer and is available at all buy-in levels. Certain $400, $600, and $1,100 single-day events carry the big blind ante along with the $3,500 MSPT event and the two $5,000 Main Events.

LaRosa took a practical approach to instituting the big blind ante to please the full spectrum of players who play Venetian Deepstack summer events.

“For me, it mostly came down to the one-day events where it is very important for players to maximize the number of hands they see,” LaRosa noted. “Of course, with the popularity of this format amongst a number of professional players, I chose to offer it with our highest buy-ins as well.”

Mixed Games represented

Demand for mixed games is on the mind of all Las Vegas operators when constructing the summer calendar. The Venetian has a strong quota of games to choose from with new Pot Limit Omaha variants fresh on the menu.

Single-day PLO and PLO/8 tournaments fill in a few days. The grand addition is the $1,600 PLO MonsterStack 8Max event. The three-day MTT opens on Friday, June 1 and carries a $250,000 guarantee with players starting at a stack of 35,000.

Other mixed events include H.O.R.S.E., OE, and PLO Progressive Bounty.

More new events to choose from

The Venetian is keeping players entertained with new tournaments across the summer. LaRosa looks forward to rolling the additions out with the PLO Monster Stack among his favorites.

“I think all four new MSPT events will be a huge hit, but I am also excited to offer a few new events including our $1,600 NLH (6Max) $750K guarantee, $1,600 PLO (6Max) $150K guarantee, $1,600 PLO MonsterStack (8Max) $250K guarantee, $1,100 NLH Summer Savers I and II; both with $1 million guarantees, as well as the $400 NLH NightStack with a $1 Million Guarantee, which should be one of the best valued events all summer.”

The Summer Savers that LaRosa speaks of match up against the end of the World Series of Poker schedule following the start of the Main Event. It will be interesting to see how the numbers from the respective series match up against one another with overlap among major events.

Keeping player feedback in mind

LaRosa is active on Twitter in responding to player feedback. Responses to various tweets inspired some of the makeup for the final draft of the Venetian Deepstack schedule.

“Player feedback is very important to me, which is why I seek their opinion every year on our twitter page @venetianpoker. I love to see the ideas they come up with and what events they are passionate about. If they are excited for an event, I just think it makes sense to try to offer it in some way.”

2018 DeepStack Championship Poker Series Schedule

Date Time Event Guarantee
May 14 12:00 PM $340 No Limit Hold’em DoubleStack Day 1A* $100,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $9,000
May 15 12:00 PM $340 No Limit Hold’em DoubleStack Day 1B* $100,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000
May 16 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $40,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $10,000
May 17 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1A* $150,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000
May 18 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1B* $150,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $17,000
May 19 12:00 PM $400 SuperStack Day 1C* $150,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $12,000
May 20 12:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $25,000
2:00 PM $400 Omaha 8/B $12,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $10,000
May 21 12:00 PM $340 No Limit Hold’em DoubleStack Day 1A* $100,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000
May 22 12:00 PM $340 No Limit Hold’em DoubleStack Day 1B* $100,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $9,000
May 23 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $40,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $10,000
May 24 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1A* $250,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $15,000
May 25 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1B* $250,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $25,000
May 26 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1C* $250,000
2:00 PM $400 PLO $20,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $20,000
May 27 11:00 AM $400 No Limit Hold’em Seniors $25,000
12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $75,000
2:00 PM $400 PLO 8/B $20,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
May 28 11:00 AM $200 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Kick Off Day 1A* $500,000
4:00 PM $600 Omaha 8/B Day 1A* $100,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $25,000
May 29 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Kick Off Day 1B* $500,000
4:00 PM $600 Omaha 8/B Day 1A* $100,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
May 30 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $200,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $20,000
May 31 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1A* $500,000
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1A* $1 Million
June 1 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1B* $500,000
2:00 PM $1,600 PLO MonsterStack 8-Max (3 Day) $250,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $25,000
June 2 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $100,000
4:00 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $25,000
June 3 11:00 AM $200 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1A (3 Day) $3.5 Million
4:00 PM $600 H.O.R.S.E* $50,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
June 4 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1B (3 Day) $3.5 Million
4:00 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
7:05 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Turbo Progressive Bounty $75,000
June 5 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1C (3 Day) $3.5 Million
4:00 PM $800 PLO Bounty (8Max)* $88,888
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
June 6 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1D (3 Day) $3.5 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
June 7 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $400,000
4:00 PM $600 BIG O* $75,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1B* $1 Million
June 8 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack* $400,000
7:05 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’emTurbo $75,000
June 9 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1A (3 Day) $1 Million
4:00 PM $800 PLO 8/B 8-Max* $88,888
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Survivor $40,000
June 10 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1B (3 Day) $1 Million
4:00 PM $1,600 PLO 6-Max* $150,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
June 11 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1C (3 Day) $1 Million
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $50,000
June 12 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em Seniors (50+) Day 1A* $600,000
1:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em DoubleStack* $250,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Survivor $50,000
June 13 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em Seniors (50+) Day 1B* $600,000
1:00 PM $600 PLO 8/B $75,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $50,000
June 14 12:00 PM $1,600 No Limit Hold’em (6Max)* $750,000
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1C* $1 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
June 15 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
12:00 PM $800 No Limit Hold’em 8-Max Day 1A* $800,000
2:00 PM $5,000 No Limit Hold’em MSPT (Big Blind Ante) (3 Day) $1 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $75,000
June 16 12:00 PM $800 No Limit Hold’em 8-Max Day 1B* $800,000
6:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $75,000
10:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperTurbo $10,000
June 17 12:00 PM $800 No Limit Hold’em 8-Max Day 1C* $800,000
4:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
7:05 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Turbo $75,000
June 18 12:00 PM $1,600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1A (3 Day) $3 Million
4:00 PM $600 Omaha 8/B* $100,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $50,000
June 19 12:00 PM $1,600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1B (3 Day) $3 Million
4:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
June 20 12:00 PM $1,600 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1C (3 Day) $3 Million
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $50,000
June 21 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $300,000
1:00 PM $600 Omaha 8B / STUD 8B $50,000
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1D* $1 Million
June 22 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack* $200,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
June 23 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1A* $500,000
1:00 PM $1,100 PLO 8/B 8-Max $100,000
5:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1B* $500,000
10:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperTurbo $10,000
June 24 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1C* $500,000
4:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1E* $1 Million
June 25 12:00 PM $3,500 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1A (Big Blind Ante) (4 Day) $3.5 Million
1:00 PM $1,100 PLO Bounty 6-Max $100,000
4:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
6:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $75,000
June 26 11:00 AM $400 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
12:00 PM $3,500 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1B (Big Blind Ante) (4 Day) $3.5 Million
2:00 PM $500 No Limit Hold’em LIPS Ladies* $40,000
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1F* $1 Million
June 27 11:00 AM $400 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite Turbo 5 Seats
12:00 PM $3,500 No Limit Hold’em MSPT Day 1C (Big Blind Ante) (4 Day) $3.5 Million
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1G* $1 Million
June 28 12:00 PM $1,600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty* $700,000
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $50,000
June 29 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $400,000
6:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em NightStack Day 1H* $1 Million
June 30 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack Day 1A* $750,000
1:00 PM $1,100 PLO 8/B* $100,000
5:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack Day 1B* $750,000
10:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperTurbo $10,000
July 1 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack Day 1C* $750,000
5:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack Day 1D* $750,000
July 2 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em MonsterStack Day 1E* $750,000
1:00 PM $600 Omaha 8B / STUD 8B* $50,000
7:05 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Turbo Progressive Bounty $75,000
July 3 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $200,000
1:00 PM $400 PLO Progressive Bounty $20,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Turbo $40,000
July 4 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $200,000
4:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
7:05 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $40,000
July 5 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Saver I Day 1A (3 Day) $1 Million
1:00 PM $600 PLO / PLO 8B* $75,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $75,000
July 6 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Saver I Day 1B (3 Day) $1 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $75,000
July 7 1:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack* $200,000
July 8 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $200,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
July 9 11:00 AM $400 Omaha 8/B $20,000
12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Saver II Day 1A (3 Day) $1 Million
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
July 10 12:00 PM $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Summer Saver II Day 1B (3 Day) $1 Million
July 11 1:00 PM $600 MonsterStack* $200,000
July 12 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $200,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Survivor $50,000
July 13 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em Seniors SuperStack (50+)* $50,000
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
July 14 11:00 AM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
12:00 PM $5,000 No Limit Hold’em CPPT Day 1A (Big Blind Ante) (5 Day) $2 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 5 Seats
July 15 12:00 PM $5,000 No Limit Hold’em CPPT Day 1B (Big Blind Ante) (5 Day) $2 Million
7:05 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em Mega Satellite 2 Seats
July 16 7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $15,000
July 17 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $35,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
July 18 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $35,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $15,000
July 19 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1A* $250,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
July 20 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1B* $250,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $15,000
July 21 12:00 PM $600 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack Day 1C* $250,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $15,000
July 22 12:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $25,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $25,000
July 23 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack (Big Blind Ante) $35,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000
July 24 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Closer Day 1A* (Play down to 5%) $400,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000
July 25 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Closer Day 1B* (Play down to 5%) $400,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $10,000
July 26 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Closer Day 1C* (Play down to 5%) $400,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Progressive Bounty $9,000
July 27 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Closer Day 1D* (Play down to 5%) $400,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $12,000
July 28 12:00 PM $400 No Limit Hold’em Closer Day 1E* (Play down to 5%) $400,000
7:05 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em SuperStack $20,000
July 29 12:00 PM $300 No Limit Hold’em Rebuy $25,000
2:00 PM $400 PLO Bounty $12,000
7:05 PM $200 No Limit Hold’em Bounty $9,000

*two-day event

Cash To No Longer Play at Venetian’s Las Vegas Poker Room

April 17, 2015 0 comments
Venetian Las Vegas

The largest poker room in Las Vegas is following the lead of MGM Resorts and Wynn.

The 59-table Venetian poker room will no longer allow cash to play in games.

The new policy will go into effect on May 1 at 9am.

Players will be required to purchase chips from the dealer or a chip runner. Chips being delivered by a runner will be considered in play.

Players will be required to purchase amounts of $2,000 or more at either the cashier cage in the poker room or the main one on the casino floor by the table game pits.

The new policy is disclosed on a sign placed at the podium by the cash game entrance.

As Chris Grove at Online Poker Report points out, these moves may be in response to a June 2014 speech from Jennifer Shasky Calvery, Director of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network.

Calvery suggested that casinos find new ways to combat money laundering within their properties.

While this new policy may annoy some no limit players, there is some good news. Also on May 1, Venetian will drop its rake cap to $2. This promotion will run through May 24. The normal rake cap is $4. Venetian does not have a jackpot drop.

Venetian is owned by Las Vegas Sands. Sheldon Adelson, its founder and CEO, is a fierce opponent of online poker and other forms of gambling over the Internet.

Cash still plays at Caesars Entertainment poker rooms. There are no current plans to change that policy.

Comparing Venetian and Palazzo Games to New Jersey Sites

December 15, 2014 0 comments

Venetian and Palazzo are owned by Las Vegas Sands. Sheldon Adelson, the company’s founder and CEO, is morally opposed to online gaming.  He has stated concerns pertaining to problem gambling as one of his reasons for wanting to ban the activity.

USPoker surveyed the games offered by Venetian and Palazzo to other Las Vegas Strip resorts and those spread by New Jersey casino sites to see where players have a better chance of winning or at least lose less money.

Blackjack

We previously reported that all Venetian and Palazzo blackjack games with a minimum bet under $50 now pay 6-5 on a natural. This adds 1.39% to the house edge compared to the standard 3-2 payout. While some casinos have pits or single deck games that pay 6-5, there are still other selections that pay 3-2 at every other Las Vegas Strip casino except Casino Royale, which only offers four comparable blackjack tables. Venetian and Palazzo offer dozens of 6-5 tables.  All are shoe games.

(Note: O’Sheas spreads only 6-5 blackjack but it is a bar within the Linq, which offers some 3-2 games.)

All but one traditional online blackjack game that we surveyed in New Jersey pays 3-2. The one that pays 6-5 returns 2-1 on a suited blackjack, which wipes out .57% of the 1.39% additional edge created by a 6-5 game. That New Jersey 6-5 game also has a minimum bet of just $.10.

Roulette

Blackjack is not the only table game where players receive a lower than expected return when compared to New Jersey sites or even competing Las Vegas casinos. Both Venetian and Palazzo offer roulette with just one zero for those willing to wager at least $25 per spin. This wheel is missing a rule standard at casinos owned by MGM Resorts and available at some New Jersey sites we surveyed.

These competing single zero roulette games offer “la partage”, which is a half-back rule. If the ball lands in the 0 well in a la partage game, the even money bets only lose half. The other half is returned to the player. At Venetian and Palazzo, all money is lost. This affects red/black, odd/even and low/high.

The online version of this game in New Jersey has a minimum bet of $1.

Big Wheel

If you love sucker games, you will want to run to the Big Six Wheel. All of the bets on the Big Six Wheel have a hold of at least 11%, according to Wizard of Odds. A couple of these wagers have a 24% house edge. You will not find this nonsense game at New Jersey sites. Las Vegas casinos that spread it generally keep it within party pits.

Casino War

Casino War is exactly as it sounds. It is a game played by kids that somehow made it to the casino floor. Venetian required a $15 minimum bet during our visit and it is dealt out of a shuffle machine. A player could easily play 10 hands a minute shorthanded and five at a full table.

The edge on the game is 2.9%, according to the Wizard of Odds as the Venetian does not use the favorable 2-1 bonus payout on the ante on a back-to-back tie.  A shorthanded player will theoretically lose $261 per hour at the minimum bet, based on an average of 10 hands per minute. A player at a full table receiving an average of five hands a minute will theoretically lose about $130 per hour.

Three New Jersey sites we surveyed offer this game. Each pays 2-1 on a back-to-back tie, lowering the house edge by .56%. The tie bet at New Jersey sites pays 11-1, while Venetian and Palazzo only pay 10-1.  The minimum bet at New Jersey sites for Casino War is $1.

Caribbean Stud

Venetian and Palazzo have four of the last five Caribbean Stud tables in Las Vegas. These tables had a $15 minimum bet during our survey, meaning that a player will essentially bet $45 per hand that he does not fold because a two times raise is required to play. The house edge on this game is 5.2% with an element of risk of 2.6%, assuming it is played with proper strategy. It also offers wild variance. Caribbean Stud is virtually a dead game everywhere due to its massive edge and bankroll requirements. It is not offered by any New Jersey site.

Video Poker

VPFree2.com is a great resource for video poker throughout the country. That site shows that the best video poker at Venetian and Palazzo is 9/5 Jacks or Better, which has a 1.55% hold with perfect play and five coins wagered.

Every video poker game that we surveyed in New Jersey offers a better return to players than the ones found in Venetian or Palazzo. The best is generally 9/6 Jacks or Better, with an edge one-third that of Venetian and Palazzo’s paytable for the same game.

Las Vegas Strip tourists will find 9/6 Jacks or Better or video poker with higher returns than that at 17 Strip casinos, according to VPFree2.com.  Virtually all downtown Las Vegas and locals casinos also spread better video poker than Venetian and Palazzo.

Historically Poor Return on Slots

A report in the 2000’s by Wizard of Odds showed Venetian spreading the worst slot payouts of any Las Vegas casino. Only the airport ranked lower out of 71 surveyed locations. Compare this to the standard 95% return at online slots.

Conclusion: Players have a better chance of winning at online casinos and most other Las Vegas casinos than they do at Venetian or Palazzo.

Las Vegas for Ladies: A Complete Guide to This Summer’s Women-Only Poker Tournaments (Updated 5/18)

May 17, 2022 0 comments
Poker tournaments geared toward female players have become more popular in recent years and numerous ladies events are on tap this summer in Las Vegas.

Poker tournaments geared toward female players have become more popular in recent years and numerous ladies events are on tap this summer in Las Vegas.

Along with the annual ladies championship at the World Series of Poker, multiple properties around Sin City are offering ladies-only events. 

A notable highlight will be the LIPS (Ladies International Poker Series) tour. The series was founded in 2004 with the goal of promoting women in poker and introducing more women to the game. LIPS will host multiple events at MGM Grand, the WSOP, South Point, and Venetian.

Women will find a tournament to fit every bankroll around Las Vegas this summer. Buy-ins range from $150 to $1,000 for these special events. Here’s USPoker’s complete guide for ladies events this summer.

♠♠♠ For USPoker’s complete summer tournament guide, click here. ♠♠♠

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MGM Grand

The MGM Grand kicks off Ladies Week by hosting an official LIPS event on June 27. The week long events will have some nice choices for women looking to get some felt time.

The MGM Grand’s $350 buy-in with a $30,000 guaranteed prize pool. Players start with a 20,000-chip starting stack and the tournament includes 30-minute levels.

  • $350 LIPS Kickoff – June 27, $30,000 guaranteed

World Series of Poker 

Even though there is only one ladies bracelet event, two tournaments are set at the World Series of Poker. The annual series is located on the Strip this year at the Bally’s and Paris casinos on the Las Vegas Strip.

The ladies event is one of the highlights of the summer. In 2021, Lara Eisenberg took down the event and won $115,694.

“It feels amazing,” Eisenberg told USPoker after her win. “I try to only set process goals and not outcome goals that I have no real control over, like winning a bracelet. But it feels great to have won a major tournament and have that reward for putting in the work.”

LIPS will host a $150 warm-up event for that tournament on June 28. Players start with 15,000 chips and can expect 20-minute levels. It may not be for a bracelet, but offers a good chance for women to jump into the action at a bargain price. 

  • $150 LIPS Warm-Up  – June 28
  • $1,000 Ladies Championship – June 29

South Point

The LIPS Ladies Week then continues off the Strip at South Point. The casino is home to 30 poker tables and is hosting the LIPS National Championship.

The tournament includes multiple starting flights and 30-minute levels. Players start with 30,000 chips and the series wraps up on July 2. South Point is also hosting a $200 event as part of the series.

  • $450 LIPS Championship  – June 30 (Day 1A), July 1 (Day 1B)
  • $200 Double Green Chip Bounty Survivor – July 2

Venetian 

The final stop on the LIPS tour takes place on the Strip at the Venetian. Ladies can start the Independence Day holiday early by taking a shot at winning the LIPS Venetian exclusive trophy. The $500 event comes with a nice guarantee as well.

  • $500 LIPS trophy event – July 3, $40,000 guaranteed

Golden Nugget

Down on Fremont Street, the Golden Nugget also hosts a ladies event. While not a sanctioned LIPS event, players can expect a nice number of entries A part of their Grand Poker Series

  • $200 Ladies NLHE – June  28, $10,000 guaranteed

Aria

The Aria casino is upping the ante for ladies by offering the biggest guarantee for women this summer. The $400 event comes with a nice $50,000 guarantee.

While there may be only one ladies event, players can expect a big field for the tournament.

  • $400 Ladies NLHE  – June 28, $50,000 guaranteed

Resorts World 

The Poker League of Nations (PLON) is hosting a ladies event at the new Resorts World.  The event winner scores a prize package that includes a crystal trophy cup and a signature iconic Tiffany & Co. sterling silver bracelet valued at $700. All final table players also earn merchandise as well.

“Last fall, our Ladies Week event at the property had a $25,000 guarantee,” said of Poker League of Nations founder Lena Evans says. “We smashed the guarantee by 2x-plus and created a prize pool of over $55,000”

  • $360 Poker League of Nations Ladies Crystal Cup Championship – June 27, $35,000 guaranteed

PokerGO teams with Poker League of Nations for WSOP seat

PokerGO has also partnered with PLON to help send women to the WSOP $1,000 Mini Main Event. A $50 ladies-only online satellite is set for June 4 on PokerStars and guarantees three seats.

Women interested in participating in this special opportunity are asked to visit the PLON Facebook group page to learn more.

  • $50 WSOP Mini Main Event satellite at PokerStars – June 4, three seats guaranteed

WPT Announces Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open Stop at Seminole; Brad Owen Added as Ambassador

May 13, 2022 0 comments
The WPT announced a new stop this week at Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida, in November for the $3,500 WPT Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open.

As the World Poker Tour’s 20th anniversary season rolls on, the tour announced yet another tournament stop this week. The company returns to Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida, in November for the $3,500 WPT Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open.

This becomes the third stop at the property this year with the main event running Nov. 25-30. Poker players can expect a $2 million guarantee.

“Our previous Main Event for this festival more than doubled the guarantee,” tour CEO Adam Pliska said in a news release. “The enthusiasm for these events has been remarkable, and I look forward to continuing our ongoing streak of bigger and bigger prize pools for the RRPO main event.”

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Details on the series

Those heading to South Florida will find additional tournaments as part of the series running Nov. 16-30. A $400 Deep Stack tournament kicks off the festival with $1 million guaranteed.

All series players are eligible for WPT’s Player of the Festival leaderboard, awarding a $1,100 WPT Prime Passport to the winner.

In Season 19, the RRPO broke multiple records for prize pools and attendance. The $3,500 Main Event produced more than 1,500 entries for a $5 million prize pool. Lithuania’s Gediminas Uselis (pictured above) took the title for $778,490.

“I look forward to continuing our tradition of highly-anticipated events this fall,” Seminole Hard Rock tournament manager Jason Heidenthal said. “We’ve been planting seeds to make sure Hollywood is considered a poker player destination for years, and the upcoming festival will continue to accelerate that momentum.”

The tour’s subscription online poker site ClubWPT will offer qualifiers for the upcoming event.

Tour adds Brad Owen as ambassador

In other WPT news, the company recently signed poker pro and award-winning vlogger Brad Owen as an ambassador. As the newest spokesman, Owen will attend tour events around the world, create exclusive WPT content, and work alongside the company’s online partners to promote the game.

“I am excited to be joining the team at WPT,” Owen said in a news release. “I’ve been looking forward to making this the next big step in my poker journey, and I believe our partnership will help us both continue to grow the game of poker.”

After playing cash games for years,  Owen began showcasing his rise in stakes via YouTube videos in 2016. His channel has since grown to nearly 600,000 subscribers and his total views now exceed 120 million. Owen also won “Best Vlogger” this year at the 2022 Global Poker Awards.

“Brad has shown himself to be one of the most impactful forces in the community and the game as of late,” Pliska noted. “His genuine approach to sharing the game of poker has reached an incredible amount of fans, and WPT is fortunate to be joining forces with him.”

The vlogger joins well-known DJ and artist Steve Aoki as a company representative. The tour named Aoki as the first WPT ambassador in January. Owen makes his debut as an ambassador at the WPT Choctaw festival this weekend.

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A look at upcoming WPT events

The WPT rolls into the Choctaw Casino Resort on Friday with the $3,800 event guaranteeing $2 million. That is followed by the $5,000 WPT Venetian in Las Vegas running July 12-17 with $4 million guaranteed.

From Sept. 2-7, the $3,500 Seminole Hard Rock Tampa brings the tour back to Florida. That’s followed by the AUD$5,400 WPT Australia at The Star Gold Coast. The RRPO is then the last stop that’s been announced so far.

Rankings Roundup: Ali Imsirovic, Phil Ivey Coming Up Big; Darren Elias Stalking WPT Top Spot 

May 5, 2022 0 comments

The poker world’s attention soon shifts to the World Series of Poker with the festival beginning in just under four weeks. With so much live poker recently and much more on the horizon, USPoker takes a look at some players making waves.

Rankings Roundup once again offers a glimpse into some of the players leading the pack in various tours and events, both live and online.

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Global Poker Index

WSOP Main Event
Phil Ivey scored big in Cyprus.

The GPI runs several leaderboards throughout the year including regularly updating the world’s top players. As of Thursday, Ali Imsirovic remains the No. 1-ranked player in the world and also sits in the top spot for GPI Player of the Year.

These rankings come after earning the 2021 GPI player of the year title. Imsirovic’s success this year hasn’t come without some controversy. In April, fellow high stakes pro Alex Foxen accused him of cheating by looking at another player’s cards in the recent US Poker Open.

Foxen also charged him with collusion and multi-accounting while playing online. Imsirovic hasn’t responded to the charges.

In April, Imsirovic scored two wins and a third-place finish in Aria High Rollers for a total of $336,498. Jeremy Ausmus and Shannon Shorr sit behind Imsirovic in second and third. Here’s a look at the current standings.

GPI rankings

  1. Ali Imsirovic – 3,298.58 points
  2. Jeremy Ausmus – 3,154.46 points
  3. Shannon Shorr – 3,075.55 points
  4. Chance Kornuth – 3,027.26 points
  5. Sean Perry – 2,875.78 points

GPI Player of the Year

  1. Ali Imsirovic – 3,049.11 points
  2. Jeremy Ausmus – 2,962.74 points
  3. Shannon Shorr – 2,421.48 points
  4. Brock Wilson – 2,276.88 points
  5. Sean Perry – 2,158.74 points

On the female side of the GPI player of the year race, Jessica “Lilith” Vierling is now in the top spot. She produced several cashes in March and April including finishing third in a $500 event at The Orleans in Las Vegas for $16,077.

In the mid-major POY race, India’s Ankit Ahuja currently holds the first-place position. In March, he won a $2,500 event at the Venetian for $189,013. Some other nice cashes followed in March.

Vierling also finds the second-place slot in the mid-major race as well. Here’s a look at the mid-major and female player standings.

GPI Female POY

  1. Jessica Vierling – 1,571.78 points
  2. Christina Gollins – 1,390.98 points
  3. Kristen Nyman – 1,208.08 points
  4. Elanit Hasas – 1,105.56 points
  5. Valerie Novak – 908.68 points

GPI Mid-Major POY

  1. Ankit Ahuja – 1,626.63 points
  2. Jessica “Lilith” Vierling – 1,571.78 points
  3. Brett Apter – 1,518.89 points
  4. Aaron “Padilla” Massey – 1,506.84 points
  5. #Scott Baumstein – 1,497.91 points

PokerGO Tour

This tour looks to crown the top players at high roller events around the world. As on the GPI rankings, Imsirovic rises to the top in the PokerGO rankings as well.

Another familiar name finds the No. 2 spot – Phil Ivey. The poker legend recently produced some big results at the Super High Roller Series in Cyprus. He scored three wins and a runner-up finish during the series. That helped lead to a total haul of $3.8 million during the stop in Cyprus.

This year’s action also includes a new winner-take-all PokerGO Tour Championship. The winner in that event scores an extra $500,000 with the 21 players’ starting chip stacks based on leaderboard points. Here’s a look at the current standings.

PokerGO Tour standings

  1. Ali Imsirovic – 2,176 points
  2. Phil Ivey – 1,725 points
  3. Jake Schindler – 1,472 points
  4. Isaac Kempton – 1,375 points
  5. Alex Foxen – 1,295 points

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World Poker Tour

Alexander Yen remains on top in the WPT player of the year standings after taking down the Lucky Hearts Poker Open in January. However, the standings could see some serious changes in the coming weeks.

A familiar name looms large. Darren Elias is the tour’s leading winner with four titles and leads the remaining six players in the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown. Thet final table plays out on May 25 in Las Vegas, giving the New Jersey poker pro the chance to make it five tour titles.

“It feels amazing to be back at a WPT final table,” Elias recently told USPoker. “There haven’t been a ton of events since COVID so there are not a lot of opportunities. This event in particular is a good one to make with the size of the field.”

The Showdown was only the second event of the season. Should Elias win, he’ll earn 1,400 points to move into No. 1. He and Yen would be tied in points, but the Showdown pays out $1 million. That would lift him over Yen by about $25,000.

Even a top three finish by Elias would move him into the top three, making him a contender for the award. The success for Elias continued in April with a runner-up finish in the PokerGO Heads-Up Showdown for $200,000. 

The WPT player of the year earns a $15,000 WPT Passport with second and third earning $10,000 and $5,000. The next tour stop is set for May 13-16 at the Choctaw in Oklahoma followed by WPT Venetian in Las Vegas from July 12-17. Here’s a look at the current POY standings.

WPT Player of the Year

  1. Alexander Yen – 1,400 points, $975,240
  2. Anton Wigg – 1,150 points, $650,180
  3. Daniel Lazrus – 900  points, $482,380
  4. Nicholas Verderamo – 700 points, $361,130
  5. Josh Kay – 650 points, $279,930

WSOP.com

In the online area, WSOP.com recognizes a player of the year on the city’s shared liquidity platform in New Jersey and Nevada. Adrian “sacakewalk” Sacher leads the field through early May. The Las Vegas grinder is a regular at the online tables and has had a nice year so far. 

Another online poker crusher rounds out this top five. Mike “BrockLesnar” Holtz won the 2021 POY title and now sits in fifth.

The WSOP.com POY scores $10,000 in cash, a winner’s ring, and $1,500 in online tournament tickets. Here’s a look at the standings.

WSOP.com POY (Nevada and New Jersey)

  1. Adrian “sacakewalk” Sacher – 25,222.68 points
  2. Jack “011POKERDR” Pan – 24077.29 points
  3. Ryan “WhosYourDodd” Dodd – 22933.58 points
  4. Alex “RIP_Neiko” Rocha – 18523.60 points
  5. Mike “BrockLesnar” Holtz – 16382.51 points
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