Every week the hosts of PokerStars TV, James Hartigan and Joe Stapleton, bring you a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like being two regular folks on the international poker circuit. Poker in the Ears is a mostly uncensored take on the world of poker, with special guests, and chances for you to join the hosts on tour.
In 2022, Hartigan and Stapes have covered the hottest online and live poker events, chatted with actors, poker champions and coaches, and even won awards for it, too.
In this article, you can find details of every Poker In The Ears podcast of 2022. You’ll find the latest show at the top of the page so you can quickly stay up to date, followed by a full list of episodes. Enjoy!
It’s not the episode that anyone was expecting. Instead, the Poker In The Ears podcast focuses in on the malicious DDoS attacks that affected PokerStars and the thousands of players who were enjoying the WCOOP Main Events.
James and Joe are joined by Chris Straghalis, Director of Online Poker Experience at Stars, to discuss what happened. Strag talks though the events of that night, explaining what happened, clearing up rumours about overlays and server capacity, and taking us behind the scenes with regards to the protections in place and the changes being made.
Strag also takes us through how players were compensated, including an explanation as to what happens when it comes to satellites, individual cases, and rakeback challenges.
On a positive note, the WCOOP Championship Weekend takes place November 5 – 6. The podcast discusses what’s on offer, including increased guarantees for all three NLHE Main Events.
Then, Howard Swains joins the show to fill us in on the latest WCOOP highlights from the series. Ferreira’s fourth title, three more triple championships, and a round-up of stats.
To close the show, Sebastian Generali from the USA picks ‘Donnie Brasco’ as his specialist subject in ‘Superfan vs Stapes’.
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EPISODE 254 – WCOOP SPECIAL WITH POS CONTENDER BENNY GLASER & PS BLOG’S HOWARD SWAINS
PokerStars Blog’s own Howard Swains joins the show to give us updates on the latest stats and standout stories from WCOOP 2022, including a roundup of the four players that have been dominating the series. Next up, Benny “RunGodLike” Glaser, a strong contender for Player of the Series, joins the podcast to talk about his WCOOP routine and poker mixed games. There’s also some (amateurish) strat talk, as James tries to get his head around a hand that Joe played in a recent live tournament.
EPISODE 253: INTERVIEW WITH EPT BARCELONA CHAMPION GIULIANO BENDINELLI & WCOOP PREVIEW
James and Joe recap a hugely successful #EPTBarcelona, re-living the highs (an incredible turnout, a series of entertaining live streams) and the lows (James getting sick, lightning striking the venue). Plus, they speak to the winner of the record-breaking EPT Main Event, Italian pro Giuliano Bendinelli. Joe also talks about his post-Barcelona vacation with Ben and Marle Spragg, and the guys look to the 2022 World Championship of Online Poker, previewing their cards-up coverage of some of the biggest WCOOP tournaments, including the 12 new World Championship events.
EPISODE 252: EPT BARCELONA PREVIEW WITH VETERAN HOSSEIN ENSAN
In their final summer special, James and Joe looked to the EPT Barcelona 2022, where the guys were kept busy with eight days of live streaming from the birthplace of the European Poker Tour. On this podcast, they’re joined by a Barcelona veteran, a player who won the first ever EPT Seniors Event and made the final table of the EPT100 Main Event in 2014, before going on to win EPT Prague and the WSOP Main. Yes, Hossein Ensan makes his first ever appearance on the podcast to discuss his poker career. Elsewhere, James and Joe find time to talk about what they’ve been up to in the summer months: a combination of poker, comedy, overseas travel and mingling with YouTube stars.
EPISODE 251: THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN ARM WITH NICK PEINE
In their second summer special, James and Joe are joined by poker fan and actor Nick Peine (‘A.P. Bio’, and ‘Office Christmas Party’) to review a gambling-themed film from 1955. Yes, it’s a Poker Movie Monday on a Wednesday, released on a Thursday, featuring an in-depth review of ‘The Man with the Golden Arm’, starring Frank Sinatra, Kim Novak and Eleanor Parker. The film is also the subject of this week’s Superfan quiz, as long-time listener Stefan-Razvan Ens tries to win not one, but three Sunday Million tickets.
EPISODE 250: CATCHING CHEATS WITH FRANCIS LINCOLN, HEAD OF GAMING INTEGRITY AT POKERSTARS
In the first of their summer specials, James and Joe tackle the serious subject of cheating in online poker. This comes in the wake of some high-profile cases involving the use of real-time assistance software. So, how big a problem is it? What methods are players using to try to gain an unfair advantage? How does Stars stop people breaking the rules? These questions are directed to Francis Lincoln, Head of Game Integrity at PokerStars. Think of him as the Chief of the Poker Police! Francis talks in detail about his remit, and how his team combines advanced tech and human detective work to keep the online tables safe and fair.
EPISODE 249: PLATINUM PASS WINNERS COLM CHAN & TOKE GERDING JENSEN
James and Joe reflect on the changes announced to the Sunday Million and the first few days of the WSOP in Las Vegas, before focusing on PSPC 2023 – now confirmed for January in the Bahamas – with a summary of what’s happened so far and details of how to qualify, and an interview with a recent Platinum Pass winner, Colm Chan from Ireland. Plus, with highlights of the first PSPC appearing on the PokerStars YouTube channel, the guys chat to a qualifier who’s been there, seen it, done it. Toke Gerding Jensen, the former Superfan who won a Platinum Pass on Poker In The Ears, talks about playing the PSPC in January 2019 and featuring in the first couple of TV shows.
EPISODE 248: SCOOP 2022 MAIN EVENT WINNER ‘WELCOMEINFERNO’, PLUS ‘BERIUZY’ & HOWARD SWAINS
With SCOOP over for another year, James and Joe present their SCOOP 2022 recap. They’re joined by Howard Swains from the PokerStars Blog to provide the key stats and headline stories from the series. Plus, they talk to the champion of the $10k Main Event, ‘WElcomeINnferNO’. The Austria-based player bested a field of 654 to win the trophy and $1.1m. In addition, the guys speak to Canada-based streamer Rayan ‘Beriuzy’ Chamas, who was a fan favorite during the live coverage of the Main Event on Twitch and YouTube, and eventually placed 10th.
EPISODE 247: SCOOP 2022 CHAMPS ‘EASYWITHACES’ & ‘SENKEL92’, PLUS PS BLOG’S HOWARD SWAINS
An incredibly busy month for James and Joe. They’ve returned from Monaco, having streamed five days of the PokerStars EPT Monte Carlo, and at this point are half way through SCOOP 2022. They recap EPT Monte Carlo and enlist the services of PokerStars Blog’s Howard Swains to provide a mid-series SCOOP update. Plus, there’s the chance to hear from two SCOOP 2022 winners: Fintan ‘easywithaces’ Hand and Tobias ‘Senkel92’ Leknes.
EPISODE 246: EPT MONACO SCHEDULE AND INTERVIEW WITH POKER PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR MASATO YOKOSAWA
James and Joe discuss heading to Monaco for the first time in three years for the PokerStars EPT Monte-Carlo and reveal they’ll their streaming schedule for five consecutive days of live coverage. The guys are joined by Masato Yokosawa, the Japanese poker player and vlogger who was named Favorite Poker Personality at the third Global Poker Awards. Yokosawa discusses the growing popularity of poker in his home country and reflects on playing EPT Prague last month.
EPISODE 245: JAMES AND JOE RECAP UKIPT LONDON AND INTERVIEW COACH BAHMAN
James and Joe are back with an extended episode, unveiling the streaming schedule for SCOOP 2022, the new dates and venue for the second PSPC, and a couple of additional EPT stops. They recap the UKIPT London festival, with Joe revealing what happened on and off the felt (minor spoiler alert: there’s a hot tub involved). Plus, performance expert Coach Bahman joins the guys to discuss his work helping high stakes players.
EPISODE 244: INTERVIEW WITH WSOP MAIN EVENT CHAMP KORAY ALDEMIR
James and Joe are joined by the 2021 WSOP Main Event winner Koray Aldemir. In addition to talking about his start in poker and his epic victory in Vegas, Koray answers listeners questions and shares his expert knowledge of bears. Elsewhere, Joe prepares for his trip to England for UKIPT London, where he’ll be playing some tournaments at The Hippodrome.
EPISODE 243: EPT PRAGUE WINNER GRZEGORZ GLOWNY
James and Joe have been to EPT Prague, where they streamed five days of the Main Event. They’ve also hosted live coverage of the final day of the epic Sunday Million Anniversary. They recap both tournaments on this week’s episode, with a particular focus on the long-awaited return of the European Poker Tour. There’s an interview with Grzegorz Glowny, the online qualifier who went on to claim the Prague Main Event title.
EPISODE 242: THINKING POKER’S ANDREW BROKOS
James and Joe were in Prague for the European Poker Tour, their first live event since EPT Prague in December 2019! They talk about some of the early results from the festival and preview their five-day live stream of the Main Event. There’s also a deep dive into Hold’em strategy on this week’s episode, as Joe receives coaching from Andrew Brokos, one of the hosts of the Thinking Poker podcast. Andrew is set a near impossible challenge – make Stapes a better poker player in 30 minutes.
EPISODE 241: THE CARD COUNTER WITH LAUREN MANN
James and Joe finally take an in-depth look at ‘The Card Counter’, starring Oscar Isaac, Tiffany Haddish, Tye Sheridan and Willem Dafoe. It’s a film that’s been discussed on the podcast many times. Joe served as the poker consultant during pre-production and principal photography, and, ahead of its theatrical release last year, the pair interviewed writer-director Paul Schrader. For this episode, they’re joined by producer Lauren Mann. Plus, Super High Roller reviewer Sam Greenwood makes a brief return to the show, breaking down the film’s main Hold’em hand. And Joe’s mother gives Sight & Sound magazine a run for its money, providing top-level analysis via a series of text messages.
EPISODE 240: GLOBAL POKER AWARDS WITH VERONICA BRILL
In an unexpected twist, Poker In The Ears was named Best Podcast of 2021 at the third Global Poker Awards in Las Vegas. Joe was at Aria to collect the award (and promptly misplace it) and takes great delight in making this episode a victory lap for the entire production team. The boys discuss some of the other winners at Friday’s ceremony, and are joined by Veronica Brill, recipient of the Charitable Initiative Award. She explains how she earned the accolade and talks about her life pre and post ‘Postlegate’. Meanwhile, two listeners provide a ruling on Joe’s friendship dilemma, and James takes a jump to the left as he quizzes Wayne Gartner from Australia about ‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’.
EPISODE 239: WITH PRESIDENT OF GLOBAL POKER AWARDS ERIC DANIS
Joe is on the road again. After scoring tickets to the Super Bowl in Los Angeles, he flew to Florida for a special NASCAR charity event, before heading to Las Vegas for the third Global Poker Awards. On this week’s episode, the boys are joined by Eric Danis – President of the Global Poker Index – to preview the awards and run through the nominees in the key categories. Elsewhere, Judges James and Joe provide a ruling on a tournament payout-related controversy.
EPISODE 238: MOVIE SPECIAL WITH HIGH ROLLER SAM GREENWOOD
The boys return with a brief recap of Joe’s latest live poker adventures, and then get stuck in with their long awaited deep dive into recent films and TV shows. Canadian high stakes reg Sam Greenwood plays the role of Super High Roller reviewer as he talks about some of the stuff he’s watched in the last few months, while James and Joe break down the Netflix movies ‘The Power of the Dog’ and ‘Don’t Look Up’ and the Disney+ shows ‘Hawkeye’ and ‘The Book of Boba Fett’. Finally, Rory Herbert – who works as a script supervisor in the film and TV industry – competes for a Sunday Million Anniversary ticket in ‘Superfan vs Stapes’.
EPISODE 237: POKER PRO AND SIX-TIME JEOPARDY CHAMPION ALEX JACOB
In this episode of Poker In The Ears, James and Joe invite poker pro turned trivia maestro Alex Jacob onto the podcast to talk poker and game shows. Alex is a WSOP and WPT finalist who won the United States Poker Championship in 2006. He later appeared as a contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’, winning six times and taking down the Tournament of Champions.
EPISODE 236: BEST PERFORMING FEMALE PLAYER OF 2021 NADYA MAGNUS
News is out that Poker In The Ears is in the running for Best Podcast at the Global Poker Awards. Joe has also been nominated for Best Broadcaster. Meanwhile, the winners of the GPI Players of the Year have been revealed. The pair are joined on this week’s episode by the best performing female player of 2021, Nadya Magnus. Nadya was a Loose Cannon on the first season of ‘The PokerStars Big Game’. She shares her (bittersweet) memories of appearing on that show, and talks about what it takes to win POY and who she thinks might be next year’s champion.
EPISODE 235: WITH DOUG POLK, BRAD OWEN & ANDREW NEEME
For their first podcast of 2022, James and Joe recap poker headlines that include the winner of Dare2Stream, the amazing accomplishment of the EPT Online Main Event champion, the standout moments from the Winter Series, and the story of the trio of players who’ve bought a poker room in Texas – Yes, there are three guests on this week’s show, as Doug Polk, Brad Owen and Andrew Neeme discuss their new business venture.