Posts Tagged ‘WPT’

Carlos Mortensen bubbles 2013 ME Final Table, Returns to Relevancy

Tuesday, July 16th, 2013

Throughout the 2000’s, Carlos Mortensen molded himself into one of poker’s biggest stars. From 2001-10, he won the 2001 WSOP Main Event, three WPT titles, and two WSOP gold bracelets. But as with most industries, you’re only as good as your last year in poker. And for Mortensen, last year was pretty bad.

The Spaniard managed just three small cashes for a total of $29,235. Now for an amateur who’s trying to carve out a poker career for them self, this isn’t too bad of a total. But for a guy who’s earned $11,469,512 over time, $29k for an entire year just isn’t going to cut it.

Up until this week, Mortensen wasn’t faring much better than last year. He’d earned $84,870, which is practically pocket change for somebody who’s made $1 million-plus in four different years. But “The Matador” changed everything after making a deep run in the 2013 WSOP Main Event.

Mortensen was one of the bigger chip stacks throughout the latter stages of the Main Event and even looked like he was a strong bet to make the final table. However, with 10 players remaining and blinds rising, his stack took a beating after he folded to several big raises from opponents.

Eventually, Mortensen became the short stack and needed a big hand badly. On a board of Tc-6c-3s-9c, J.C. Tran shoved and prompted Mortensen to call with his remaining 3.5 million chips. The latter flipped over Ac-9h for a pair and flush draw while Tran showed 8c-7s for a straight. Mortensen needed any club but a 7c to win with a flush. However, the river was a 2d, which sent The Matador out in 10th with a $573,204 payout.

It’s somewhat disappointing that a dynamic pro like Mortensen fell just short of the 2013 WSOP Main Event final table. However, it’s definitely nice to see him shake off a down past 18 months to grab a huge cash and jump back into the spotlight.

Gus Hansen loses Passport, prevented from playing 2013 WSOP

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

The 2013 World Series of Poker is one-third of the way finished and almost all of poker’s biggest names are in attendance…the keyword being “almost” every star player.

Gus Hansen has been one of the most notable absentees from the 2013 WSOP thus far, and he’s got a very good reason for missing the early portion. A couple of weeks ago, the Great Dane was in Macau to play the HK$1 million (US$130,000) buy-in GuangDong Ltd Asia Millions Main Event. After finishing up at the 2013 GDAM, Hansen was all set to travel to the United States for the WSOP. But there was just one problem – he lost his passport.

As PokerNYHederne reported, Hansen was traveling in a Hong Kong taxi and somehow lost his passport in the cab. Unable to recover this important document, the Danish poker star was prevented from flying to the US. He passed the time by playing high stakes FLO8 and 2-7 Triple Draw games at Full Tilt Poker and making $176,696 in profits.

After a week of being stuck in Hong Kong, Hansen obtained a new passport and has finally departed for Las Vegas. Now he’ll have a chance to build on his very impressive career, which includes $11,210,072 in live poker tournament winnings – $1,192,748 of which has come through WSOP cashes.

In proportion to his overall tourney winnings, Hansen’s single WSOP gold bracelet isn’t that great. So earning another bracelet will definitely be on the Dane’s mind when he takes the felt at the Rio.

Of course, you can’t measure Hansen’s career in terms of bracelets since he has some other very notable accomplishments. He became the first man to win three World Poker Tour titles, doing so in less than a year’s time. Plus Hansen’s $11.2 million in tournament earnings rank first on Denmark’s all-time list, which is no small feat when you consider that 2008 WSOP Main Event champ Peter Eastgate ($11.13 million) is also Danish.

Theo Jorgensen is Latest Robbery in Poker Community

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

One topic that we’ve discussed a few times in the past is how more and more poker players seem to be getting robbed these days. And the trend culminated last year with the grisly beating/robbery of 2010 WSOP Main Event champion Jonathan Duhamel.

Unfortunately, we witnessed another robbery that was just as grisly as Duhamel’s over the weekend. This time the victim was well-liked Danish grinder Theo Jorgensen, who had three masked criminals break into his Greve, Denmark home. They demanded money and the Dane forked over what amounted to $6,215 USD. However, the robbers were unhappy with this amount and one of them shot Jorgensen in the leg three times.

His wife, who’d witnessed the entire scene, called police immediately after the robbers took off. They arrived too late to catch the criminals, but Jorgensen was quickly driven to the hospital. He’s now recovering from the leg wounds and released the following Facebook message about the ordeal:

I know that the outsiders may have a mistaken idea of how much cash I have in my home. I have alarm systems installed, always so get cash lying as possible and generally taken my precautions. It has unfortunately proved not to be enough. I have it under (control) well, and right now I want to focus on taking care of my family, so we can get through this.

This is yet another unfortunate and scary robbery incident in the poker world. And we’d like to think that this would be the last poker robbery for a while. However, with the fame and perceived wealth that players like Jorgensen have, other grinders will likely be targeted in the future too.

Speaking of Jorgensen’s wealth, he’s collected $3,239,763 in live poker tournament cashes and has earned both WSOP and WPT titles. The Dane has also made millions of dollars playing both live and online cash games as well.

Mike Matusow thinks WSOP Tournament Buy-ins should be Dramatically Lowered

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

Mike Matusow says a lot of things, which means that not everything coming out of his mouth is in anywhere, shape or form newsworthy. However, he did recently make a good point about how WPT and WSOP tournament buy-ins should be lowered so more live players can make a living. “The Mouth” discussed this in a recent interview by saying the following:

I’m not a big fan of traveling the circuit. Unless they bring the buy ins down to around $3,000 now, everybody is going to go broke. I think all the WPTs and all the WSOPC events should be like $3,000 and they should cut the rake in half. People are hurting. If you’re going to play a $10,000 tournament once a month, it’s impossible to survive. That’s why you don’t see me.

It costs like $700k a year to play all the big tournaments. That’s about one second place finish. Do you have any idea how hard it is to win second place every year? You’re playing the best players in the world.

Matusow went on to say that he doesn’t think the poker world can sustain itself without the big sponsorship deals coming from sites like PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker. He specifically pointed out that the WSOP has to “start giving back” because times are rougher right now.

The Mouth also talked about the Full Tilt Poker situation a little, and he basically backed Howard Lederer and Chris Ferguson up by saying, ”

I still believe Howard is not a criminal. Chris is not a criminal. I know they would never steal from anybody. They made mistakes. When they had no money they needed to sell right away. They had offers but they wanted to be greedy about it and keep control. They lost the offers. They put themselves in this position.

As evidenced by his nickname, Matusow has always been known as a loudmouth. However, with 18 years of experience in the poker world, he does have some good insight into the current state of the game. And it’d certainly be nice if the WSOP took his advice about cutting tournament rake in half!

Jake Cody and Hans Vogl sign Online Poker Deals

Friday, November 18th, 2011

The past few days have seen some big online poker signings with both Jake Cody and Hans Vogl inking sponsorship deals. Cody was the biggest signing since the UK poker pro is one of only four players to have won poker’s triple crown (WSOP, EPT and WPT title).

What’s truly amazing about this is that Cody’s major titles have come within a two-year span. In 2010, he won the EPT Deauville ($1,213,194) and WPT London ($425,492) tournaments, while 2011 saw him take down the WSOP $25k Heads-up title ($851,192) to complete the triple crown. In all Cody has $2,870,822 in poker tournament winnings.

After signing with PKR, Cody talked about how excited he was over the sponsorship deal by saying, “I’m very excited about joining Team PKR Pro. I’ve been patient with sponsorship, waiting for the right deal to come along.” He also added, “When I spoke to PKR I was really impressed with the whole setup and the ideas that they have going forward, and I knew straight away I wanted to be part of it! It’s a great site to be involved with right now and I think I can help take it to the next level.”

Hans Vogl may not be as decorated as Jake Cody, but Betfair saw enough in the self-taught grinder and poker writer to offer a deal. His best tournament finish is a 5th place effort in the 2007 Aussie Millions ($318,112) event, and his career earnings amount to $412,581.
Vogl started out playing low stakes online poker games, and was fairly average in the beginning. However, in just three short years, he transformed into a pro player through hard work and persistence. The new Team Betfair member spoke about his transformation by saying, “Hard work I would say. Reading books, analyzing hand histories, discussing hands with friends. Then of course playing, playing and playing to get into a routine. It is also important to have self-discipline in order to avoid chasing losses or going on tilt.”

Betfair manager Asko Heiskanen also discussed the signing by saying, “We are always looking for great players who can represent Betfair. Hans has demonstrated time and time again that he is a player of extraordinary skills. We believe there’s much more to come from him and we are delighted he has joined Team Betfair.”

Jake Cody named Poker Player of the Year

Sunday, September 4th, 2011

Jake Cody started the 2011 WSOP off with a bang after winning the $25k No-Limit Hold’em Heads-up Championship. And his reward for winning was a massive $851,192 prize and a WSOP gold bracelet. Perhaps even bigger than the bracelet though was the fact that Cody became only the fourth person ever to win poker’s triple crown, which includes winning a WSOP, EPT and WPT title.

With Cody joining the ranks of poker’s elite, it’s no surprise that he cleaned up at the 2011 British Poker Awards by taking “Player of the Year” and “Best Tournament Player” honors. As for the voting process, the 2011 British Poker Awards are a unique deal because those attending the Poker in the Park festival get to vote on winners.

Seeing as how Poker in the Park is held in London, it’s not surprising that the UK’s Cody was able to take the Player of the Year title – although this isn’t to say that he didn’t earn it. In addition to Cody winning a couple of awards, quite a few other UK pros earned some hardware, including Chris Moorman (Best Online Player), Sam Trickett (Best Cash Player) and Matt Perkins (Best Breakout Player).

The British poker fans did show some love to people outside of the UK since they voted Jason Mercier as the “Best International Player” and Kara Scott as the “Best Poker Personality.” It’s no surprise that Mercier would win an honor since most poker tournament rankings – including ESPN’s – continually put the Florida-based pro at the top of the list. As for Scott, the Canadian hostess of Poker After Dark seems to be loved by all in the poker community since she’s got looks and a great personality (as the award alludes to).

Vegas Inc covers Online Poker Move to Canada

Monday, August 8th, 2011

As we discussed at the beginning of August, several prominent online poker pros like Phil Galfond, Cole South and Dan “Jungleman12” Cates have either moved to Canada, or are in the process of moving to Canada. This being said, the website Vegas Inc did a good story on this subject entitled “Exodus of Online Poker Players under way.”

This article revolved around how lots of Las Vegas poker pros are seriously considering going up north because the live poker game just isn’t the same. Vegas Inc wrote the following:

Las Vegas became a favored home base for many poker professionals because of the concentration of big-money poker games, tournaments and all-hours access to amenities and entertainment. Many online players also play poker in casinos — although those who make most of their money in virtual poker rooms have little use for the typically slower and more expensive games offered in Las Vegas casinos.

Tony Dunst, who not only plays online poker professionally, but also works for the WPT, had plenty more to say on why Las Vegas-based online poker pros hate the live game so much. He said, “Live (casino) poker is really slow and monotonous, and the casino setting is generally unpleasant. You’re sitting in a chair for nine hours around people you might not like or want to listen to.”

He finished by adding, “For people like us who play eight to 20 games at a time from the comfort of our own home … your buddies are around and you can watch movies and order food. You can talk strategy and communicate with friends from all over the world.”

Shaun Deeb was also featured heavily in this article, and he looks to be the next big-time pro to make the jump to Canada. Deeb told Vegas Inc, “I used to play poker for 100 hours a week. Every day I sit around I get more motivated to leave.” With over $6 million in online poker tournament winnings, it would be stupid for Deeb not to leave for the greener pastures in Canada.

Assuming you want to see more from the Vegas Inc article, you can check it out here.

Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier joins Triple Crown – wins Seven Card Stud Championship

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

While Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier has become one of the best poker players of all-time, the one knock against him is that he hasn’t won a WSOP bracelet. However, this all changed when Grospellier won the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship at the 2011 WSOP.

The Frenchman cruised through a 126-player field that included some incredible players such as Alexander Kostritsyn (5th place), Chad Brown (6th place), Nick Schulman (9th place), Men Nguyen (10th place), Ville Wahlbeck (12th place), Jason Mercier (14th place) and Matthew Hawrilenko (16th place). After winning, ElkY hauled in $331,639 and joined the prestigious triple crown club (EPT, WPT and WSOP title).

Previously, the only players to win the triple crown included Gavin Griffin, Roland De Wolfe and Jake Code (via 2011 WSOP). Now Grospellier has cemented himself further into poker lore by becoming only the fourth person to win the triple crown.

As far as Grospellier’s march to the incredible accomplishment goes, he kicked things off by winning the 2008 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. ’08 turned out to be a great year for ElkY as he went on to capture the WPT Championship title as well. But as quickly as WPT and EPT success came, Grospellier had to wait quite some time before he finally tasted true WSOP success.

Fortunately for him, the time has finally come, and he can now add WSOP hardware to his already impressive list of accomplishments. With the Seven Card Stud Championship now under his belt, Grospellier now has almost $8 million in live tournament winnings, which ranks him 25th on the all-time money list. And since ElkY puts a lot of focus on live tournaments, you can bet that he will be moving up on the list over the next few years.

 

WPT Borgata Poker Open Sees Record Attendance With 1,042 Entrants

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

The World Poker Tour has always had a strong turnout on the East Coast, but nothing compares to the record number of attendees they have seen in the last two years. Last year a whopping 1,018 players registered and this year even more players joined the tournament. The 1,042 entrants this year signify the highest ever number of attendees in the WPT Borgata Poker Open event.

Why did so many players come out for the Borgata Open? It could be that more and more people are getting into tournament poker, but the more likely reason is that the WPT drastically lowered the buy-in for the event. Typically the event had a $10,000 buy-in, but for the last two years they lowered it to $3,500. At the same time as they lowered the buy-in, they raised the prize-pool guarantee to $2 million. With these kinds of stakes, who wouldn’t sign up?

Of course, it is important to point out that the payout structure for the event has also been changed so the winner will walk away with a smaller payout than in years past. A year ago, winner Olivier Busquet took home $925,514. This year’s tournament winner will take home only $733,802. But I’d say that’s still pretty good considering the $3,500 buy-in.

If you are one of the players taking part in the WPT Borgata Poker Open, or have another tournament coming up, I suggest practicing with a free poker game online to brush up on your skills before the big event!

Kathy Liebert Plays In 100th World Poker Tour Event

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010

Women’s poker all star Kathy Liebert joined the WPT 100 Club over the weekend, becoming the second poker player to play in one hundred World Poker Tour events. Liebert is the highest grossing female poker player and has raked in over $5.3 million over her career. Her spot in the WPT 100 tour serves to cement her place as an all star in the world of women’s poker, and poker in general.

Liebert’s 100th event was the 2010 Legends of Poker tournament event, which took place at the Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles over the weekend. The only other poker player to participate in 100 WPT events is Erik Seidel, who reached the milestone last month in a tournament at the Bellagio Cup. The Bicycle Casino has a lot of sentimentality for Liebert, as it was the place that she played in her first WPT final table, as well as her first WPT tournament.

The name of the event, the “Legends of Poker”, is also fitting as Liebert is truly a legend. She has made six World Poker Tour final tables, has cashed out in 15 WPT events and has earned over $1.7 million in WPT winnings. She has also fared well in the World Series of Poker, with one WSOP bracelet, and 30 WSOP cashes. She also finished in 17th place in the WSOP Main Event twice – in 1998 and 2000.

Congratulations to Kathy on her latest achievement!