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2007 PokerStars Year In Review

As we prepare to begin a new year, it's worth taking a few moments to look back at the time we've all spent at PokerStars in the last 365 days. This year has been one of accomplishment, charity, and innovation. Consider that PokerStars dealt its ten billionth hand. It hosted its 50 millionth tournament. It kicked off a tournament that hosts 20,000 players every week and guarantees a $100,000 prize pool for merely $11. What's more, players racked up millions of Frequent Player Points. Four people used those points to buy brand new Porsches. PokerStars introduced 12 new payment methods for many countries including the ever-popular e-checks. It was, without a doubt, a year to remember.

Here's a look back at 2007 and all it was at PokerStars.

Happy New Year, everybody.


January

Ryan Daut wins $1.5 million in PokerStars Caribbean Adventure--2007 kicked off with the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. Over the course of a sunny week in the Bahamas, a record-setting field became the final six players who fought it out in a chilly wind on the Dragon Deck of the Atlantis Resort and Casino. Though second-place finisher Isaac Haxton came into the final table with a prohibitive chip lead, the tenacious Ryan Daut would not be bested. Daut won $1.5 million for his first place finish at the 2007 PCA.

2007 PCA Champion, Ryan Daut

Quillan Nagel wins $1 million in Moneymaker Millionaire Freeroll--While the PCA was open to all comers, the Moneymaker Millionaire Freeroll Live Finals were open to only 27 players. First place was a guaranteed $1 million. The eventual Moneymaker Millionaire winner was Canada's Quillan Nagel.

Quillan Nagel and his wife, Lisa

Magnus Petersson wins EPT Copenhagen, ElkY takes second--The first European Poker Tour event of the New Year saw players invade Copenhagen, Denmark. Spectators were treated to a great show, especially when the event got heads up between Team PokerStars Pro ElkY and Magnus Petersson. Here's how the final table of the 2007 EPT Copenhagen event turned out.

February

Dario Minieri gets his Porsche--After being the first PokerStars player to use his Frequent Player Points to buy a car, Dario Minieri went to his local dealership in Italy and picked up his Porsche.

Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri

Noah Boeken joins Team PokerStars Pro--2007 saw many new pro players join Team PokerStars Pro. The first of the year was long-time PokerStars player Noah "Exclusive" Boeken.


March

PokerStars celebrates one year of Sunday Million tournaments--One of the coolest things that happened in 2006 was the beginning of the first-ever $1 million guaranteed tournament. In March 2007, PokerStars celebrated one year of Sunday Millions and Sunday Million winners.

Andreas Hoivold wins EPT German Open--2007 marked a lot of firsts for the European Poker Tour. Among those new things was a stop in Dortmund, Germany for the first-ever EPT German Open. The event proved to be extremely popular, especially with eventual winner, Andreas Hoivold.

Peter Jepsen wins Polish Open, Katja Thater makes final table--The EPT also made its first visit to Poland in 2007. For the second time in the year, a Team PokerStars Pro, this time Katja Thater, made the final table. The winner, Peter Jepsen, won more than €325,000 and a kiss from his girlfriend.

EPT Warsaw winner, Peter Jepsen
Katja Thater at the Polish Open


VIP Club sends PokerStars players to NBA--The PokerStars VIP Club did some amazing things in 2007. Among the first was sending some longtime players on a dream vacation with the Dallas Mavericks.

April

Gavin Griffin wins EPT Grand Final--The EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo was bigger and more luxurious than ever before. Some of the world's biggest poker stars traveled all the way to Monaco for the event. One of those stars, Gavin Griffin, plowed his way through a head cold to win the biggest poker event in Europe--and he did it all with pink-tinted hair, a stunt aimed at raising money and awareness for breast cancer research. Griffin won more than $2 million at the EPT Grand Final.

Player uses VIP Club Concierge Service in a big way--The PokerStars VIP Club Concierge Service is one of the greatest rewards in all of online poker. It can be used for just about anything the player wants. For instance, in April, one player used his Frequent Player Points to fund an African safari.


May

ElkY wins race to Supernova Elite--In 2007, PokerStars announced it was upping the ante on the VIP Club and adding another level of greatness. Born was Supernova Elite, a level that required a player to earn one million VIP Player Points. It took ElkY four months. He became the first-ever VIP Club Supernova Elite.

Elky


BigJoe2003 finds his Elite status--Just a couple of weeks after ElkY made VIP Club history, BigJoe2003 showed him how close a race it really was by achieving Supernova Elite status, as well.

BigJoe2003

PokerStars players win trip to Cannes--PokerStars did a ton of charity work in 2007, not least of which was the $1 million it put toward easing the suffering in Darfur. PokerStars teamed up with the producer and cast of Hollywood blockbuster Ocean's 13 who established the charity Not On Our Watch (NOOW). Part of that effort was the Darfur charity tournaments. The big prize for one of those tournaments was a trip to the Cannes Film Festival. For more on the trip, visit, the Cannes Film Festival Trip Report.

justine0003 wins PokerStars' Ten Billionth Hand--In May, PokerStars celebrated its ten billionth hand. Over the course of the month, PokerStars paid out a crazy amount of money to winners of milestone hands. The biggest single winner, however, was justine0003, who won the ten billionth hand at a .01/.02 table. Her winnings? A cool hundred grand.

justine0003

PokerStars sends players to Lifeball--Continuing with its charity efforts, PokerStars donated $100,000 to the Lifeball AIDS research fundraiser in Vienna, Austria. Part of the effort involved charity tournaments on PokerStars, in which the winners got a trip to the Lifeball.

June


Steve Paul-Ambrose makes final table of World Series Mixed Hold'em event--As the World Series kicked off at the Rio in Las Vegas, Steve Paul-Ambrose decided to start the Series off in style. He made it to the final table of the Mixed Hold'em event, placing fourth and winning more than $140,000.

OmahaEd nearly gets first bracelet--PokerStars player OmahaEd did his best to live up to his name during the World Series and nearly won a World Series bracelet in Omaha.

Humberto Brenes makes World Series final tables--Team PokerStars Pro Humberto Brenes made his 20th World Series final table in one of his favorite events. He placed eighth and won nearly $80,000. Just a few days later, Brenes made his 21st final table in the Pot-Limit Hold'em event, taking third place and winning nearly $200,000.

Humberto Brenes at the 2007 World Series

Barry Greenstein and Greg Raymer make same final table--Late one night at the World Series, two of the biggest names in poker made the same final table. Barry Greenstein and Greg Raymer made the same seven card stud final table. Raymer took sixth and Greenstein took fourth.

Daniel Negreanu joins Team PokerStars Pro--In what would prove to be the biggest announcement in all of the World Series, PokerStars unveiled Daniel Negreanu as the newest face in the Team PokerStars Pro stable.

Daniel Negreanu mugs from the camera in his first day as a Team PokerStars Pro

PokerStars players hit Hollywood--As their prize for winning one of the PokerStars Ocean's 13 Darfur Charity tournaments, a crew of PokerStars players hit Hollywood for a red carpet premiere and party.

Stars sign poker felt for charity--Usually, it's poker players signing the felts. This time it was some of Hollywood's biggest stars signing the PokerStars baize as a prize for the third PokerStars Ocean's 13 Darfur Charity Tournament.

Greenstein defines multi-tabling--During the World Series, Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein defined the concept of multi-tabling, as chronicled in Seventeen Steps with Barry Greenstein.

Katja Thater wins Razz bracelet--Fresh off a final table performance in the World Series Ladies Event, Team PokerStars Pro Katja Thater charged hard into the Razz event and walked away with her first bracelet.

Negreanu makes World Series Stud final table--With his PokerStars jersey still fresh from the box, Daniel Negreanu decided it was time to make a final table. He took fifth place in a World Series stud event.

Barry Greenstein final tables $50,000 HORSE event--In what many people considered the championship event of the World Series, Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein showed why he is considered to be one of the best poker players on the planet. Greenstein took seventh place in the big event and won more than a quarter-million bucks.

PokerStars launches Asia Pacific Poker Tour--In what would eventually prove to be a monumental move, PokerStars announced the launch of the APPT with stops all over Asia and Australia.

July

Andre Akkari joins Team PokerStars Pro--The Brazil-folk are an incredible crew to watch at the World Series. They were led around the room many a time by the Andre Akkari. It only seemed right that he be the next member of Team PokerStars Pro.

PokerStars throws party for Supernovas--The night before the World Series Main Event got going, PokerStars threw an insanely good party for its Supernova players at the top of the Palms Casino.

PokerStars players make millions in World Series main event--After nearly two weeks of some of the hardest playing of their lives, PokerStars players put together a multi-million dollar take at the 2007 World Series. The three most impressive finishes came from Hevad Khan, Raymond Rahme, and Tuan Lam who won nearly $9 million on their own.

Chris Moneymaker shows his heart off the table--Chris Moneymaker may be known as a tough player at the tables, but his biggest strength is his heart off the table, as shown in Against the Odds with Chris Moneymaker.

Moneymaker playing cards for hospital straws

PokerStars launches Sunday Hundred Grand Tournament--The launch of the Sunday Hundred Grand gave players a chance to enter a tournament for $11 and have a chance at a $100,000 prize pool. This is now the biggest field of online players in a single tournament every week. When 20,000 players sit down at the virtual felt, first prize is $20,000.

August

Parise crowned first APPT champion--After two months of excitement leading up to the first APPT event in Manilia, Brett Parise became the first winner on the APPT circuit.

PokerStars upgrades software to support more languages--In continuing recognition of its efforts to provide a top level gaming experience and customer support to all players regardless of their native language, PokerStars introduced a new software upgrade to support a wide array of langauges. By the end of the year, the PokerStars software and website was available in English, French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, Japanese, Italian, Polish, Hungarian, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian and Finnish, once again proving poker's true international appeal, and PokerStars commitment to offering the number one poker experience.

September

Sander Lylloff wins EPT Barcelona--With the beginning of a new season on the European Poker Tour, the world's poker pros once again descended on Barcelona, Spain. The winner was Copenhagen, Denmark's Sander Lylloff, who took home €1.1 million.


Team USA wins PokerStars World Cup of Poker IV--Poker players from the USA, at some point in history, have won most every poker championship. One missing was the PokerStars World Cup of Poker. That changed in September when Team USA won its first World Cup Title.

WCOOP sets records, Raymer wins--PokerStars' tournament gurus once again put together an insanely good schedule of events and kicked off the World Championship of Poker with a guaranteed $15 million in prize money. Among the number of fantastic stories to emerge from WCOOP was the Event #6 win by Team PokerStars Pro Greg Fossilman Raymer. By the time WCOOP ended, players competed for nearly $25 million in prize money.

Team PokerStars Pro grows by four--Team PokerStars Pro continued to grow in September when Dario Minieri, and 2007 World Series final table players Ray Rhame, Hevad Khan, and Tuan Lam became PokerStars-sponsored pros.

Joseph Mouawad wins EPT London--In September, Joseph Mouawad became part of an elite club, the members of which have parlayed a PokerStars satellite win into an EPT championship. Mouawad won £611,00 for his win at the EPT event in London.

Ziv Bachar wins APPT: Seoul--Just one month after the APPT kicked off in Manila, it moved on to Seoul for another history-making event. This time, Ziv Bachar took top honors, winning $139,872.

Ziv Bachar

October

WCOOP puts World in World Championship--The World Championship of Poker wrapped up. Players from 107 countries played 23 events for nearly $25 million in prize money. For a complete look at the statistics from the 2007 WCOOP, see the WCOOP statistics page.

Nice guy Julian Thew wins EPT Baden--One of the nicest guys on the tournament circuit was due for a big win and he picked it up in Baden, Austria at the EPT event there. Thew won €670,800 for his first place finish.

PokerStars adds Steps tournaments to its satellite schedule--In an effort to give players another way to win their way to big buy-in events, PokerStars introduced Steps tournaments to the stable of satellites. The first Steps tournaments came out in late October and were immediately popular with players looking to win their way into APPT circuit and the PCA.

PokerStars upgrades software for more languages and resizable lobbies--PokerStars has always been ahead of the pack at introducing new features for online poker software. In October, PokerStars released some big changes to improve every player's experience, incuding more language support platforms and re-sizable lobbies.

LParreira wins 2007 World Blogger Championship of Online Poker--For the third consecutive year, PokerStars thanked the world's bloggers by giving them a huge freeroll. This year, the winner, LParreira, came out of Portgual. Now, he'll be headed to play in the 2008 PCA.

Reuben Peters wins EPT Dublin--It had been a while since an American had taken down an EPT event. Reuben Peters, a journeyman pro and PokerStars qualifier from the U.S., made his way to Dublin and took down the event for €532,620.

Reuben Peters

BCM11 turns FPPs into a car--In a story that would start to sound familiar, another PokerStars player turned his ethereal FPP credits into a luxury automobile.

Dihn Le wins at APPT Macau--The APPT was all about making history this year and that's exactly what it did, taking televised tournament poker to mainland China for the first time ever. Dihn Le walked away with the history-making title and $222,640.

Eric Assadourian wins APPT High-Roller Event--Not yet ready to leave China, the APPT decided to throw a big $15,000 High-Roller event. Eric Assadourian, a 28-year-old from Sydney, won the first-ever event and $368,000.

DDBeast trades up to a Porsche--As the end of the year drew nigh, DDBeast decided it was time to have a new car. He checked and discovered he had the three million Frequent Player Points. Next thing he knew, he was riding in some serious style.

PokerStars announces PokerStars Passport--The last day of November, PokerStars announced the coolest online poker promotion of the year: The PokerStars Passport. Whoever wins this Passport will get travel money and buy-ins to ten huge poker events in the year 2008.

December

Sunday Warm-Up guarantee increases--In yet another sign of its popularity, the Sunday Warm-Up's guarantee was increased for the second time in a year. Now, the guarantee is a cool half million dollars every week.

PokerStars introduces Mac client--At long last, PokerStars satisfied the legions of people who spend their days in front of the Mac. The beta version of the PokerStars Mac software is available at the PokerStars Mac Download page.

Arnaud Mattern wins EPT Prague--It took a Frenchman to best the field in the final EPT event of 2007. Arnaud Mattern won the record-setting EPT event in Prague for €708,600.

Arnaud Mattern

Grant Levy wins APPT Grand Final--The APPT celebrated a successful first season in Sydney where Grant Levy played the homefield advatange to a AUD$1 million win in the APPT Grand Final.

Grant Levy

Hachem celebrates first win in Australia--Joe Hachem is a world champion in poker, but he had never won an event in his home country. That changed when he won the APPT Tournament of Champions. Sure, his winnings all went to charity, but a win is a win, right?

Santa Claus drops a big dime--To celebrate the holiday season, Santa Claus dropped in on the PokerStars tables and threw a party to the tune of around $10,000 of gifts to random PokerStars players.

PokerStars hits 150,000 simultaneous players--Less than two years after setting the world record for number of simultaneous players, PokerStars had its biggest day ever. On December 30th, more than 150,000 players logged on to play on PokerStars at the same time.

VIP Club Players have huge year--PokerStars players continued to take advantage of the best VIP program in online poker. More than 3,400 players earned more than 100,000 VIP Player Points and achieved Supernova status. Nearly 40 players earned a startling one million VIP Player Points and achieved Supernova Elite status.

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