February 2008

28 February

PokerStars awards double points on February 29

A friend of mine said he wasn't going to go to work on February 29. If asked by his boss why he didn't show up, he planned to deploy an argument of ignorance. "February 29? There is no such thing. I didn't see it on the calendar last year!" Whether...more

26 February

From .Net to NBC--Alisha Kunze goes heads up

So, imagine you're from Greensburg, Indiana. You're one of a few more than 10,000 people living in the little city southwest of Indianapolis. The city isn't known for putting out famous folk, least of all famous poker players. The more likely exports from Greensburg's borders are flour, caskets, and brooms....more

25 February

PokerStars Sunday Tournament Results (2-24-08)

It was a weekend of big money and big deals in the PokerStars Sunday tournaments. Only the High Stakes Showdown and Hundred Grand finished without a chop. That meant the top few places in the rest of the tournaments paid out some serious prizes. Just check out the Sunday Million...more

23 February

EPT Copenhagen: Tim Vance, a PokerStars qualifier from St Louis wins EPT Copenhagen

EPT Copenhagen winner Tim Vance You can keep the final from Barcelona back in season one that lasted into the night. You can even forget the final two years ago held in this very casino that saw Denmark’s Mads Andersen win as the clock struck 3am and the camera...more

EPT Copenhagen: Into the final stages

1.40am -- Soren Jensen from Denmark is eliminated in second place for DKK3,521,429 or €472,463 2-7-8 with two spades on the flop. Soren checks. Tim, now with sleeves rolled up, did the same. The turn is a three, another spade. Soren bets 115k and Tim calls quickly. The river is...more

EPT Copenhagen: The action resumes after the break

10.50pm -- Players take a ten minute break. 10.45pm -- The flop – 6-2-5. Check, check. The turn a seven. Check, check. The river a nine. Tim bets, Soren folds. 10.40pm -- A few pots with a little more action, a hand won on the river with two pairs for...more

EPT Copenhagen: Catching up at the dinner break

As players take a break it’s worth taking a look back over some of the video blogs from this week. The team started every day with a plan – which stories to follow, which players to interview and which guy to stick a microphone on for the day... Peter Hedlund...more

EPT Copenhagen: Action from the early levels

6.15pm -- Magnus raises 73k pre-flop but gets no takers. It’s the last hand of the fourth level of the day and the players now head for a one hour dinner break. 5.55pm -- Rasmus moves in, called by Danny Ryan. Both players show A-J for a split pot. 5.50pm...more

EPT Copenhagen: Final table player profiles

Back row (L to R) Soren Jensen, Tim Vance, Magnus Hanse, Rasmus Hede Nielsen, Nicolas Dervaux, Patrik AnderssonFront row - Simon Dorsland and Danny Ryan Seat 1: Rasmus Hede Nielsen, 26, Copenhagen, Denmark – 789,000 chips Local boy Rasmus has been a poker professional since last August and was...more

EPT Copenhagen: Final table about to begin...

It comes with the territory – international poker travel, jetting in from all corners of the world only to see nothing of the town you’re staying in. I’m not looking for sympathy here (not much) but it’s a plain fact – if you work here or do well in an...more

22 February

EPT Copenhagen: PokerStars qualifier Tim Vance is chip leader for tomorrow's final table

Danny Ryan pushed with K-Q of hearts and found Johan Lund calling with none other than aces - the second time he’d found himself up against aces in the space of an hour. But this time the outcome would be more favourable to the American. He had Lund covered but...more

EPT Copenhagen: Vance on the money with perfect call

It was like one of those Super Bowl highlight reel moments. “You have ace king. You have ace-king. I don't see you making that call with ace-queen..." The highlight film will be in black and white with a hefty voice over talking about the tension, the close rail, the TV...more

EPT Copenhagen: In the shadow of the feature table

With the feature table available live on EPT Live I tried to get an idea of what was going on over on table one, a few feet away, so I watched a round of hands with about 200 railbirds. PokerStars qualifier Daniel Ryan Hand 1 -- I got there just...more

EPT Copenhagen: The feature table and beyond

Back from dinner. No time to waste and two players were out just minutes after the re-start. Martin Bjerring Hansen went first in 20th followed by charismatic Italian Gino Alacqua. PokerStars qualifier Runar Runarsson has also gone, exiting in 18th, despite appearing on the EPT Live screen in the background...more

EPT Copenhagen: Nothing is as easy as it looks...

The players are on a break, free to take an hour for dinner. But that may or may not be a straightforward affair. What could be so difficult about food? Well, in the poker world superstition and lucky charms are common place and once you get a routine you think...more

EPT Copenhagen: 20 players head to the buffet

Four hours, four levels, what has really happened? Well, nearly 20 players have left Casino Copenhagen with a cheque, a story, but with disappointment weighing heavily on their shoulders. That it happened so fast may mean they won’t feel the real effects for many days. Right now we can only...more

EPT Copenhagen: Re-draws and eliminations

“I don’t have a hand, but whilst the camera’s on me I just want to say hello to my daughter Nanzi.” This is Tim Vance making good use of the attention the camera is giving him during a hand on the feature table. He’s just arrived there after a re-draw....more

EPT Copenhagen: Tim Vance making a stand

Back on day one Timothy Vance played most of the day from a standing position, tipping from one foot to another, either talking to someone specifically or talking to anyone, and is experiencing for the first time the pandemonium of the last four tables of an EPT. PokerStars qualifier Tim...more

EPT Copenhagen: A surprise or two in the first level

Well he certainly had a chance, and when Severin Hovde found pocket sevens a few hands in he no doubt figured his opportunity had come. He pushed with his 27k, getting a call from Joris Jaspers with A-4. Joris might like the omen this flop brought – A-5-4. Two pairs...more

EPT Copenhagen: Chase begins for a seat in the final

When the 39 players that avoided the chop finally emerged from the smoke and debris of the last few minutes of day two there was one man amidst the confusion who you could say was quite used to the relief and exhaustion. That would be Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano,...more

21 February

EPT Copenhagen: That's the money done, now we need a final

170 arrived this afternoon for what usually proves be the most gripping day of any EPT. Day two unites survivors from the two flights in one grand room and doesn’t let them out until the required number are left. Just as they congratulate each other on surviving their respective day...more

EPT Copenhagen: Clinging on for 40th place

Fans, families, freaks, the lost looking for the PokerStars hospitality suite, casual observers, press, the wannabes, the eliminated, and those still playing. For a short time tonight everyone in Copenhagen was standing inside the rail to watch who would go out on the bubble empty handed and who would be...more

EPT Copenhagen: Here yesterday, still here today...

Joris Jaspers is looking to make this EPT the one he scores big. After playing a few already this season he’s come close but never made it into a cash finish. Now he’s looking for even better, re-raising a bet – slowly pushing three stacks worth 60k into the middle...more

EPT Copenhagen: Pick a card, any card...

I’ve always been the last to step forward when the likes of a magician comes calling for volunteers but frankly I was early to arrive and the only one in the room. I had no choice. Florian Zimmer is a German illusionist, having made television appearances, worked in his own...more

EPT Copenhagen: What's all the fuss?

Kara Scott has a round up from earlier today... Time is ticking on and the pace of players being eliminated has remained high. It’s looking more likely that the 40 player mark will be reached before eight levels of play. One player, who we briefly met earlier whilst gold suited...more

EPT Copenhagen: Negreanu sunk in shock battleship defeat

Whilst the tournament has been reaching critical mass in the playing area there have been one or two diversions for anyone here simply to watch the tournament; for those already eliminated, or for press people looking for a distraction from the marathon of hands. The PokerStars hospitality suite had its...more

EPT Copenhagen: Play reaches the dinner break

For anyone interested in the Gross Domestic Product of Denmark – a country widely believed to have a better than average economy – around half of it looked to be in play in a hand between Denmark’s Lars Juul Madsen and Sweden’s Patrik Andersen. The pot measured 160k when Andersen...more

EPT Copenhagen: National pride and a few records at stake...

Thor Hansen was a quick casualty as the blinds went up, pushing in with A-K against pocket jacks with neither an ace nor king arriving to bail him out. He may look Scandinavian, with his shock of shaggy hair, but PokerStars qualifier Tommy Pavlicek hails from Edmonton Canada, a town...more

EPT Copenhagen: Dender looking for Midas touch

Theo Jorgensen and his can’t-lose tactic, Thor Hansen’s optimism and Team PokerStars Pro Noah Boeken’s fighting spirit on the vBlog before each sat down to play on day two... With play underway Ola Brandborn, the Swedish journalist in second place on the chip list overnight came out firing, raising every...more

EPT Copenhagen: D2 or not D2 - hunt is on for new Prince of Denmark

Day two at the EPT Copenhagen. From the tournament room it looks grey through the windows and a trip outside for Danish fresh air requires a coat, a scarf, a hat, some kind of heater for your return and perhaps a shot of something to warm the bones. Luckily for...more

20 February

EPT Copenhagen: Jorgensen ahead on the day as 1b closes

Chip leader on the day Theo Jorgensen I counted four players sitting with unlit cigarettes in their mouths as the clock struck down; one even lunged passed me towards the door whilst hands at his table were still being playing – but when people are ready to go nothing...more

EPT Copenhagen: The good, the bad, the double ups

Into the last level of play. Fredrik Hostrup is up to 35k, so too regular PokerStars qualifier Joris Jaspers with 38k. Another Dane Theo Jorgensen is above average on 31k whilst Peter Hedlund grapples with a stack of 14k. Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano, who sought to dodge anything Andy...more

EPT Copenhagen: The Hedlund system in action on day 1b

He’s chatting to anyone, standing and walking around for a bit. Then he’s encouraging the young player on the table next to him who just lost a big pot. “Start building again” he says. “You want a beer? You need a beer. I’ll get you a beer.” The only problem...more

EPT Copenhagen: A long way to come not to have fun

The 170 left at dinner soon became 164, then 150 and is now 141. I spoke to Dustin Mele earlier today, the proud PokerStars Passport holder. He opted to take it easy yesterday rather than explore the city, and perhaps catch up with the sleep deprived him by jetlag from...more

EPT Copenhagen: The qualifier road to Copenhagen

One of the easiest and cheapest ways to play in an EPT like this is to qualify online. Win one of the various tournaments in the PokerStars lobby and you could find yourself jetting off to the far corners of Europe, lodged in a plush hotel and fed and watered...more

EPT Copenhagen: Chip counts and changes at dinner

As the dinner break looms a look at the chip counts has few big swings on show, but Frenchman Nicolas Levi looks to be ahead... Nikolas Levi – France -- 28 K Markus Golser – Austria -- 17 K Michael Tureniec – Sweden -- 14 K Mads Andersen – Denmark...more

EPT Copenhagen: The big names keep falling

The next big faller today is Tony G. Believe it or not this is G’s first EPT and it didn’t last long. He made a flush on an all heart flop whilst his opponent’s two pairs became a full house on a merciless river. Tony is in good company though...more

EPT Copenhagen: The calm before the storm

The settle-in period has begun – that one hour spell where, unless something unusual happens, you glide through simply getting comfortable. Here that includes a ‘help yourself’ coffee service inside the rail and comfortable chairs. Even the dealers are enthroned in ergonomically sound contraptions with headrests, arms rests and fiddly...more

EPT Copenhagen: Players ready for the start of day 1b

If you’re up to speed on your basic knowledge of quantum physics, and goodness knows we can all be a little shaky on that, you might be familiar with the ‘Copenhagen Interpretation’. To put it loosely it refers to the inability to predict something that previously had seemed straightforward. Well...more

19 February

EPT Copenhagen: Curtains for some, relief for the rest

The EPT Copenhagen sold out within hours of registration opening several weeks ago. Thanks to the internet it was an orderly scramble. Had the 460 had to turn up in person they would have overwhelmed the four man registration desk in the Casino and left most of them in bitter...more

EPT Copenhagen: Eliminations galore on the road to day 2

With more players heading to the rope line which has advanced down the room thoughout the day, all signs pointed towards the end of day 1a. It’s not far off but with less than an hour of play left there was still time for catastrophe and the loss of all...more

EPT Copenhagen: Chip leads and tribulations into level 7

Ole Brandborn is one of those people who swapped the press room for the tournament room some time ago. Not happy to watch from the rail he’s an accomplished tournament player and thanks to Alex Kravchenko sitting to his right now has a stack worth over 70k and the chip...more

EPT Copenhagen: Ladies and gents your hosts - the Danes

“I’ve played against everyone – Americans, Europeans, Scandinavians, Asians. And you guys... I hate the most!” That was Daniel Negreanu at the PokerStars Scandinavian Poker Awards last night. Legend has it of course that the sickest and most volatile players come from here. In a few generations I expect grandfathers...more

EPT Copenhagen: Chip counts at the dinner break

Play has stopped for a 45 minute dinner break. A few notable stacks... Noah Boeken – Team PokerStars Pro – Holland -- 12k Daniel Negreanu – Team PokerStars Pro – Canada -- 10k Bill Chen – Team PokerStars Pro – United States – 17,200 Bengt Sonnert -- Sweden -- 15,400...more

EPT Copenhagen: Three years on for Noah Boeken

As we mentioned earlier Team PokerStars Pro Noah Boeken has started to find the right gear, up to 12k. Copenhagen has special memories for him being the first big win in his career. He talked to the vBlog team about that day over three years ago and his hopes this...more

EPT Copenhagen: A changing landscape in the poker room

We’re into level three and after navigating through the frustrations of a shaky internet connection the landscape has changed a little. Team PokerStars Pro Dario Minieri has succumbed to that terrible condition known as terminal lack of chips. At its worst it sends players out and Dario has just that....more

EPT Copenhagen: History repeating itself?

Daniel Negreanu arrived on time this afternoon – no repeat of the last minute rush that saw him arrive late on days one and two in Germany. He’s here and is assuming the ‘Negreanu position’ – the massage posture of leaning forward in his chair whilst Suki the masseuse...more

EPT Copenhagen: The tour reaches Scandinavia

“I sailed up the Skagerrak And sailed down the Kattegat Through the harbor and up to the quay And there she stands waiting for me With a welcome so warm and so gay Wonderful, wonderful Copenhagen” From the film 'Hans Christian Andersen' (1952) That may be the first time the...more

18 February

EPT Copenhagen: The Scandiavian Poker Awards comes to town

When the EPT reaches Copenhagen each year its welcome party tends to be more than just that – and for the second year running it plays host to the PokerStars Scandinavian Poker Awards. As anyone familiar with the evolution of poker over the last decade will know Scandinavia – that’s...more

PokerStars Sunday Tournament Results (2-17-08)

In the TV news business, when the producer has a hard time determining what should be the lead story, viewers are often offered something called an "umbrella lead" that encompasses two or more of the top stories of the day in the very first segment of the news. Consider this...more

17 February

Mombasi bashes through Turbo Takedown field

The $2 Million PokerStars Turbo Takedown seemed to come out of nowhere. Just a week before it was set to play, it popped up on the PokerStars software and offered just about everybody in the PokerStars community a chance to play for some of the biggest money of the day....more

15 February

DDBeast takes his Porsche for a spin--a very fast spin

The stories of PokerStars players turning their Frequent Player Points into Porsches are becoming more and more frequent. As always, we're curious folk here at the PokerStars Blog and wondered what kind of trouble the new car owners were getting themselves into. The cars are, in a word, fast and...more

12 February

River Prayer turns Frequent Player Points into Porsche

Four and half years ago, there was a guy who played poker, but usually with the help of a few wild cards in the deck. Attending law school, apparently for the purpose of discovering he really didn't want to be a lawyer, this man decided to take a peek at...more

11 February

PokerStars Sunday Tournament Results (2-10-08)

Something was in the air this weekend as nearly 7,800 people packed into the PokerStars Sunday Million. The top three players in the event walked away with more than $100,000 apiece. In the $5,200 Freezeout, two familiar names finished in the top spots. Ryan "Daut44" Daut, 2007 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure...more

10 February

$2 Million PokerStars Turbo Takedown

Sometimes it's hard to figure out how to spend your Frequent Player Points. There are so many cool things you can do with them, it's hard to decide. This week, that changes. This morning, PokerStars announced it will host the biggest tournament of the week on February 17, at 14:30ET....more

8 February

PokerStars launches First Depositor Freerolls

It looks like PokerStars is getting ready to offer up a little Valentines Day treat for all its new depositors. This morning, PokerStars announced it will host a series of freerolls for people who deposit real money for the first time. The exclusive freeroll tournaments are open to anyone who...more

7 February

PokerStars gives new meaning to house money

When you think about the PokerStars VIP Club and what it takes to make it to the Supernova Elite level, you might conjure up the picture of a glazed-eyed half-human half-robot sitting in a dark bunker. The dedication and determination are more than most folks can fathom. There hardly seems...more

6 February

Dustin Mele uses PokerStars Passport for first time

Just a few weeks backk, Dustin Mele won the PokerStars Passport. He has already started his trips around the world. His first journey took hm to Dortmund, Germany for the European Poker Tour event there. This is his account of his first trip. By Dustin Mele EPT Dortmund was a...more

4 February

PokerStars Sunday Tournament Results (2-3-08)

It was Super Bowl Sunday in the United States and the New York Giants weren't the only big winners. Players from the U.S. won the Hundred Grand, $5,200 freeze-out, and the Sunday Million this weekend, including VOLCANO360 who won more than $180,000 in the Sunday Million. All of this week's...more

2 February

EPT Dortmund: 18 year-old Mike McDonald becomes youngest ever EPT winner

It can sometimes feel like a relief when the best man wins. There were a few likely candidates when play began this afternoon, but it muddies the sceptics view when skill, talent and potential combine in a player and are so easy to spot. Sometimes it can be tougher...more

EPT Dortmund: The action continues...

Mike McDonald from Waterloo, Canada, wins the EPT Dortmund and € 933,600. 9.30pm -- Andreas Gulunay -- Germany -- eliminated in second place for € 528,500. After a series of pots going his way the crowd were getting behind their man Andreas. On a flop of K-7-J Andreas checked and...more

EPT Dortmund: The state of play at the three hour mark

A quick start has turned into more of a drawn out strategic battle. The pre-final favourites are struggling slightly whilst the others begin edging closer to the title, as Kara Scott reports......more

EPT Dortmund: Action from the early stages

5.40pm – The two key players heading into the final clash. On a flop of T-A-9 Johannes Strassmann makes a big bet of 150k with Mike McDonald to act. McDonald has lost some of the momentum that got his to this final, whilst Strassmann, the most active of all the...more

EPT Dortmund: The players pick their winner

A few minutes before the start, time to find out who the players will think will win today......more

EPT Dortmund: The final table players

Seat 1: Mike McDonald, from Waterloo, Canada - 862,000 chips Mike McDonald is the midst of some dynamite form that has seen him cash four times in just five weeks. Still wearing braces on his teeth and only 18 years old, his fifth cash will be here in Dortmund...more

EPT Dortmund: It's almost a typical weekend

Anyone drawing back curtains in Germany this morning might not have recognised the place. After a week of grey skies and damp cold wind a spirit-lifting blanket of snow covers the ground today. Buildings are white, roads are slushed over, locals look like they’re wearing as much clothing as possible....more

1 February

EPT Dortmund: Final table set for tomorrow

We started with 32, we finished with eight. Momentum would always get us there at some stage but no one really expected the day to go so quickly. There seemed no let up in the pace and almost from the start players began falling by the wayside, from Manfred Bass...more

EPT Dortmund: A few words about Gavin Griffin

It will be talked about for some time yet but there’s no harm in paying homage to the man - Gavin griffins Triple Crown record is already set to be the poker story of the year. The EPT live team and one or two others give their verdicts on a...more

EPT Dortmund: Mike McDonald on course for final table

Mike McDonald is the last Canadian in the EPT Dortmund, he is likely the only 18 year old left in the event and I’m pretty sure he’s the only player wearing braces. But he’s no newbie to the poker scene. Known as ‘Timex’ on 2+2, the Waterloo man has recorded...more

EPT Dortmund: The mighty continue to fall

Dan Ryan just escaped elimination by the skin of a favourable river card. All-in with A-2 he was called by Dan Carter with pocket queens. No ace on the flop, no ace on the turn, bang – an ace on the river to double him up. Dan Carter Carter was...more

EPT Dortmund: How to get that polished TV shine

Two more players are out, leaving 16 and just two tables. German Peyman Mohammedzadeh has gone in 18th place for €17,400, followed by Spaniard Raul Paez in 17th, picking up the same. Thomas Kremser announces a redraw and everyone springs into action... A redraw is not the simple ‘pick a...more

EPT Dortmund: A pause for air at the end of level 17

It must be some kind of record – from 32 players to 18 in what seems like just a couple of hours. Anyone watching the EPT Live coverage will have seen for themselves but it’s been a crazed rush keeping tabs on who is still in. Marcel Luske Notable exits...more

EPT Dortmund: Players in no mood to take things slow

Kara Scott talked to Marcel Luske ahead of today’s play... Another name familiar to EPT followers is Brandon Schaeffer. On a permanent journey around the world since his season one success, would a few more Euros be of use to him? Kara Scott asked... Schaefer Schaefted -- Just minutes in...more

EPT Dortmund: Final table in view, the last 32 begin third day

As incredible as it is to hear news of Gavin Griffin’s triumph there remains today’s issue at large – day 3 of the PokerStars EPT Dortmund at Casino Hohensyburg. Kara Scott and the EPT's Lee Jones have a recap on yesterday's action... Down to 32 players after a quick-step progression...more

Gavin Griffin - Poker's first Triple Crown Winner

It's day three of the EPT Dortmund where 32 remaining players will play down to a final table later this afternoon. But right now there's another story to report, the kind of story that writes itself, of the good guy triumphing in a world laced with ego and brag. There's...more