This week on the Blog: TCOOP, Festivals, those guys who win, and the perfect seat draw
Five things to inspire (or deflate) you from the week on PokerStars.
TCOOP 2017: It all looked so easy
You start TCOOP looking at the schedule--66 events long--thinking: "surely I can win one of these?" Then ten days later you're looking back at the schedule thinking: "how did I miss?"
You're in good company.
This year's schedule showed why these titles are so sought after, but also why they're so difficult to win, with massive fields and guarantees providing additional motivation. What's more, for people who can instinctively recall their hourly rate (like those whose mind is pre-occupied only with the date of their parole hearing), they're all over within a matter of hours, which allow you to say thing like "I earned 3,000 times the minimum wage this afternoon".
Maxv2 felt that most last weekend when he won the TCOOP Main Event, effectively bringing this year's series to a close. First place was worth $489,075, deal and tax free, which you can read about here. If you have the stomach for it, that is.
Along the way we spoke to some of the winners and heard they're stories, which can all be found in our TCOOP 2017 archive. No winner is the same, being a mixture of professionals and amateurs, and each has something new to say. For instance, we've never heard of anyone else being chased around the house by a two-year-old as she celebrated her win.
PokerStars Festival London wraps up
If you've ever been to the Hippodrome in London you'll know why it's, in our view, the best place to play poker in the capital. A hollowed-out former theatre, it's looks a bit like the Mad Max Thunder Dome would have done had it been made by the cast of Dancing with the Stars rather than a post-apocalyptic bunch of murderous hoodlums on a budget.
All of which--the glitz, the glamour--might go some way to explaining why the PokerStars Festival London attracted a field of 944 entries last week, enough to strain the foundations, the bar, and the tournament room.
Sure, it was cosy in there, but while 778 men (and women) entered, only one man (or woman) could leave (with an enormous check). That was Rehman Kassam, who earned £89,320 in the early hours of Sunday morning.
We reported every step of the way on the Blog, culminating with this account of the final table.
The world's best table draw?
One motivation for learning how to play poker better is being able to stick around longer when you get drawn in the seat next to a young, charming, intelligent, attractive woman who wants to tell you about her revolutionary new plan to win marathons. Another motivation is to do all that and finish with a profit.
We wrote about this exact scenario on the Blog this week, which is all true, mostly. At least the good bits are.
It's about the benefits of practice - not just the "putting the hours in" kind, but picking out those parts of the game that you struggle with, and deliberately setting about fixing them. What's more, we offer some solutions. Look closely and you'll also learn a thing or two about marathon running.
Things can happen when you open a PokerStars account, and getting one couldn't be easier. Click here to get started.
The latest episode of Poker In The Ears
In this week's episode of Poker In The Ears, James and Joe talk to Liv Boeree. She's her usual fascinating self, talking at length about how her world view changed in the past couple of year since turning 30. We'll let the team introduce it...
"After entertaining themselves with a brief burst of 'Space Monkey' (the thumping dance track that's taking the US by storm), James and Joe delve into the American Poker Awards, and Joe's unsuccessful campaign to secure a nomination for #KidPoker. But there's still cause for celebration, as Joe is up for Media Person of the Year! There's a look back at the hugely successful #PSFLondon. Neither of the boys could make it to The Hippodrome, so they enlist the help of Liv Boeree to review the event.
"Liv talks about her deep runs in the High Roller and Main Event, and her recent success in the #TCOOP. The second guest on this week's podcast is Gary Davis, co-director of #KidPoker and the creative powerhouse behind much of #PokerStarsTV's output. Gary reflects on his early career as an editor, reveals how he (literally) stumbled into televised poker, and is tested on his knowledge of library music in 'Superfan vs Stapes'."
Click here to listen to this week's podcast.
Those people who win big
I like to think there are two kinds of reaction to hearing that someone just won something big on PokerStars. There are the people who think "Wow, amazing, look at that!" and then there are the others, the, how to put it... poker players, who think "dammit, next time that's going to be me."
Well, whichever side of that loaded coin you fall on (we're with you buddy), these stories from this week are likely to get you riled up enough to go into attack mode as you log into PokerStars this weekend.
First there was James Piccolo from New Jersey, who turned $10 into $100,000. If you've always wondered how you'd react to this kind of win, our guess is that it would be similar to Piccolo, who lived every hand ("Call and have deuces... call and have deuces... call and have deuces...") with adrenaline seeping out of every pore.
Actually, it's easier to just let you watch for yourself.
Then there was zuziek79, from Poland, who managed to win $287,230 playing The Deal. As you'd imagine he was pretty happy about things, and made it clear that he planned to spend the money wisely, which covers everything from a gold-plated underpants to the kids' college tuition when you have six figures in your PokerStars account.
Tough to miss out, but you can't help feeling happy for these guys, their lives turned around in a matter of minutes, and all for the good. If you don't feel good for them, say three "Oh hells" and play a Spin & Go. You'll feel much better.
They're not the exceptions remember, they'll be more, and you'll have your chance. Keep that in mind and click the links above.
That's all for another week on PokerStars. Every new weekend is a chance to wipe the slate clean on PokerStars, and fill it in with your own stories. You can send those stories to us @PokerStarsBlog. In the meantime, good luck.
Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog. Follow him on Twitter: @StephenBartley. What did you think about this post? Let us know on Twitter: @PokerStarsBlog.