Weekend planner: Team Pros vie for WSOP gold

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Daniel Negreanu

The week may be done, but that doesn't mean the action is going to ease off. After a long week in Sochi and crowning the first PokerStars Championship winner there, we're turning our attention to the American desert and the gold mining that began this week.

Here's what to look for this weekend.


Daniel Negreanu has shaved his beard again. There is some cognitive discomfort associated with this that we'll never quite get over after seeing it for the first time of the year. Regardless, the baby-faced Kid Poker visage signals the beginning of the WSOP.

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Who is that slick-faced boy?

There is a reason for this. First off, he's copying what Jason Mercier did last year. Second...well, he's planning to not shave this summer until he wins a WSOP bracelet. He describes it below in his daily vlog.

Here's what's interesting...Negreanu may be shaving again very soon. Kid Poker put together a team of four for the $10,000 tag team event (knowing full well he intended to play most of the event himself, he stacked his team with people he drafted in the $25,000 Fantasy Draft).

And with six teams remaining in the event, Negreanu's team has a really good lead going into the final day. That is to say, Negreanu could have another gold bracelet before you wake up on Saturday. His team (including Eric Wasserson, Mark Gregorich, and David Benyamine) have nearly 1.5 million in chips...which is all well and good until you realize the competition is going to be ridiculously tough. That, is, you might notice that the attached-at-the-hip Liv Boeree and Igor Kurganov have also fielded a team and are sitting in third place.

Here's how they stand going into the final today.

Daniel Negreanu - Eric Wasserson - David Benyamine - Mark Gregorich -- 1,498,000
Anthony Ajlouny - David Fong - Mike McClain -- 932,000
Liv Boeree - Igor Kurganov -- 929,000
Ankush Mandavia - Joe Kuether -- 800,000
Martin Jacobson - Mark Radoja -- 632,000
Javier Gomez - Lander Lijo -- 287,000

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Igor Kurganov

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Liv Boeree


While Babyface Negreanu and company will be the biggest news happening today in Las Vegas, there are still others to watch. A few Team PokerStars Pros are looking to add to their gold bracelet numbers. Barry Greenstein, Andre Akkari, and Aditya Agarwal all made it through their first table in the $3,000 Shootout event that started on Thursday. They'll pick back up today among the final fifty players left in contention.

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Andre Akkari

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Barry Greenstein


Our team in Sochi has pulled up stakes, but they left behind a good bit of reading material to keep you busy until the WSOP starts commanding your full attention.

Catch up with all the Russian news in our PokerStars Championship Sochi section, and read about Pavel Shirshikov's victory in the Main Event.


Pavel Shirshikov


(Full disclosure: There are still no barnacles.)

All of the above should be enough to keep you busy for a couple of days, but if not, we still have more.

The Manila Megastack is kicking off right now, and we'll have full coverage of it right here.

Poker In the Ears picks up with Chris Moneymaker after his 15th place finish in the PSC Sochi Main Event. Beyond that, Joe Stapleton reveals the result of his #SCOOP2017 competition, Matt Broughton tries, and fails to recount a hand from a recent charity tournament, and James Hartigans appeals for a listener to take part in next week's podcast when the boys will be discussing the classic Paul Newman-Robert Redford movie 'The Sting'. There's a €109 #PSCBarcelona satellite ticket up for grabs, so why not apply to be the "Sting Superfan" on Episode 90? (Tag your tweets #PokerInTheEars) And, talking of Superfans, Joao Matteus from Brazil turns the clock back to 2015, and answers questions about a "classic" episode of the podcast in 'Superfan vs Stapes'. You can listen to the podcast here.

Want more? Keep an eye on our Twitter account (@PokerStarsBlog) for any breaking bracelet news over the weekend.

Until then, keep your razors sharp and your aftershave at the ready.

is the PokerStars Head of Blogging. Follow him on Twitter: @BradWillis. WSOP photos courtesy PokerPhotoArchive.com

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in PokerStars news