WSOP Main Event: The PokerStars Seven?

by C.J. Hoyt

It's impossible to miss Table 163, and it didn't take the players long to notice either. PokerStars just about owns the table. Starting in Seat 1, it's Mike Jaeckels, in Seat 2 it's David Pendleton, then Samy "bebert004" Boulheouchat and Philippe "philledingue" Boucher in Seats 3 and 4, followed by Henric Strath in Seat 5 and finally Kevin "nobbyhayes" Hayes and Lon "lbfresh" Balter in Seats 6 and 7.

Mike and David have something in common besides qualifying for the Main Event on PokerStars. They both learned to play poker from their grandparents.

Mike already has his post-victory interview planned out, "I would want to go on the tonight show... Leno is so much better. He would ask me what the hell I was doing going all in with 7-2 offsuit and making my fullhouse to win the tournament. I would just tell him that I knew the cards were coming."

David has a bit more serious outlook on the tournament, "I have Crohn's disease and would love more research to be done on curing that disease. So if I were to win, I would put some money towards that cause." David's not too worry about the pros or the spotlights this time around, because he's used to it now. Last year in the Main Event, he busted on the first day at the featured table to Daniel Negreanu.

Samy has been an online poker player for two years, and this tournament will be a new experience for him. It's the first time he'll be playing live. Up to this point, he's only gotten experience playing online tourneys on PokerStars.

Lon's no stranger to competition. Not only does he have 10 years of poker playing experience, but he's a regular competitor elswhere, "I played several sports growing up and went to a Division 1 college on a baseball scholarship. I think it's this competitivness built inside of me that gives me the hunger to win in poker."

And so far today, there's been a lot of competition amongst our PokerStars players, but the good news is, they're all still alive. We'll see if the PokerStars Seven makes it as long as the PokerStars Five!

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker