The Poker Reporter Blog

Poker news, gossip, parties, donkstrikery and functioning illiteracy with the crew!

Joe Ingram

Joe Ingram, aka ChicagoJoey, had already set a record in May 2009 for most hands played online within a month while making a profit.

A total of 604,000 hands meant he had played a little over 20,000 hands every day. Even the toughest grinders online might take a week to play this amount of hands.

But Ingram had his eyes on even more and aspired to be a record holder in three different disciplines: most hands played in a day, most hands played in a month and becoming Supernova Elite within 80 days.

Record I: Most hands played in one month (604,000)

Date: May 2009

Record II: Most hands played in a day (50,000)

Date: December 2009

Record III: Reach Supernova Elite within 80 days

Date: Oct 11, 2010 till December 31, 2010

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Annette Obrestad

In September 2007 an 18-year-old girl from Norway named Annette Obrestad hit the live poker stage with a bang.

One day before her 19th birthday she won the inaugural WSOP Europe Main Event and £1m in prize money. That made her the youngest bracelet winner in the history of the WSOP.

However, she had already caught the attention of the poker community two months earlier when she won a 180-player sit-and-go without looking at her hole cards.

Challenge: Win a 180-player SnG without checking your cards

Record Holder: Annette Obrestad (NOR)

Date: July 2007

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The anchor event of the EPT - EPT London - has appeared on every season of the famed poker tour and is back again for Season 11.

Already underway with the UKIPT Main Event completed and the first two Day 1s done, attendance numbers are strong and a susbstantial sum is up for grabs for the winner.

Live streaming begins today (Tuesday) with Day 2 of the Main Event and continues right through until Saturday when a winner is crowned

Big-name players through to Day 2 with big stacks include Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, Vicky Coren-Mitchell, Liv Boeree, Sofia Lovgren, Stephen Chidwick, Anatoly Filatov, Johnny Lodden and Fedor Holz.

Commentary, as always, provided by James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton and special guests.

Click through/read on for the full webcast schedule!

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Boku Challenge2

In 2009, there was no one in Europe who played as many poker tables simultaneously as Germany's Thomas “boku87” Boekhoff.

He played up to 50 tables and devised an entirely new system for playing online poker.

To prove that his system worked – and to promote a book he had planned – Boekhoff decided to play two bankroll challenges in low-stakes Sit-and-Gos (SNGs).

Challenge 1: Turn $100 into $10k within 15 days playing SNGs w/ $16 max buy-in

Challenge 2: Turn $5 into $100,000 within 12 months

Record Holder: Thomas Boekhoff (GER)

Dates: Challenge 1 March 3-17 2009; Challenge 2 July 15 2009 - May 19 2010

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Barry Greenstein, Chris Ferguson and Andy Black

In 2006, when Chris Ferguson was still Jesus, he set out to make a fortune without using any of his own money.

Ok, that came out wrong.

The goal of Ferguson's famous online poker challenge was to make $10,000 by starting with $0 and playing according to strict bankroll management.

The Mission: Turn $0 into $10,000

Record Holder: Chris "Jesus" Ferguson

Dates: March 2006-September 2007

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Bertrand Grospellier

In 2009, France's Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier went after a world sit-and-go record during the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo.

The goal: To play as many SnGs as possible within 60 minutes while remaining profitable.

In the first part of a new series on the Greatest Online Poker Challenges attempted we'll break down ElkY's World Record and see how it made it into the record books.

The Mission: Play maximum number of SnGs, make a profit

Record Holder: Bertrand Grospellier (FRA)

Date: April 28th, 2009

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Watch the 2014 WCOOP Main Event Final Table Webcast Right Here!

Created By:
29 September 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

Isildur1! Fedor Holz! Dylan Hortin! Faraz Jaka!

The 2014 World Championship of Online Poker Main Event final table is prepared to annoint one more very happy - and very rich - WCOOP champion.

With a massive $10.7m prize pool compiled $1.8m is guaranteed to this year's winner and you can watch it all shake down on the live webcast right here.

Estimated start time is about midnight ET Tuesday, September 30.

Big-name players prepared to battle it out include the one and only Viktor "Isildur1" BlomDylan Hortin, who final tabled the WCOOP Main Event last year, Faraz Jaka, Elior Sion and rising star/secret poker backer Fedor Holz.

Your hosts and commentators for all of the action will be the famed PokerStars live duo of James Hartigan & Joe Stapleton.

They'll be joined by a revolving group of esteemed commentators including Team PokerStars pros Ike Haxton, Mickey Petersen, Jason Mercier and Jake Cody.

Buckle up - it's gonna be a good one!

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5 Spectacular Poker Hero Calls Worth Watching Again (Video)

Created By:
24 September 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog, PokerListed
Luke Schwartz2

The Hero Call is a spectacular showpiece move in the arsenal of a poker player.

Just like a goalkeeper deflecting an unsaveable ball in football, poker players can save a hand from a hopeless-looking situation by simply calling.

You don't always need a monster to invest your entire stack. A second or third pair - or sometimes even just ace-high  - is enough to expose an expensive bluff from your opponent.

When you get it right in a big hand, there's no bigger or better feeling in poker.

Here are five pretty spectacular - and instructive - Hero Calls in video form, picked out by PokerOlymp's Arved Klöhn.

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In just eight weeks or so, one out of the nine players at the final table of the WSOP main event will win $10m.

Getting that kind of money - basically for playing cards for a week, wrapped around a four-month break -  is a pretty unique thing.

The famed winner shots of the happy player standing behind a wall of cash also contributes to the general image of poker players as guys who live the good life without doing much for it.

It's true to some extent. Top poker players make millions of dollars. And the $21m Dan Colman has earned so far in 2014, which has spurred much debate about both the glory and realities of tournament poker, is an impressive number to say the least.

But, truth be told, top poker tournament players are miles away from what top earners in other businesses cash out every year. PokerListings Germany's Dirk Oetzmann breaks it down.

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Sherlock confused face

There’s a good chance if you’re reading this article you barely remember the exact first time you played poker.

For many of us it took place when we were still children playing five-card draw for pennies or candy. For others it was when one of our friends dragged us to the casino and we furiously tried to remember hand rankings.

The thing is that while it’s difficult to remember our very first session, most of us remember exactly what we were feeling while trying to learn the game.

Poker challenges us and the whole “easy to learn, impossible to master” nature of the game has a way of making fools out of even the most hardened online grinders.

Here’s a collection of GIFs that help illustrate everything about learning to play poker: The joy, the stupidity, the unbridled enthusiasm, the naiveté and the sudden shock when you learn a flush beats a straight for the first time.

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It’s good to be lucky in poker.

That’s what pro Oliver Busquet was likely thinking earlier today at the final table of EPT Barcelona’s €50k Super High Roller.

Busquet managed to hit an unthinkable combination of cards when he came from behind with ace-king against Sven Reichardt’s pocket kings.

In the hand Reichardt opened for 160,000 with eight players remaining. Busquet 3-bet shoved for the last of his 1.5 million stack.

Reichardt called and flipped over kings while Busquet was in a world of hurt with #As#2s.

The flop came #Kc#8c#8h and appeared to put the nail in Busquet’s coffin as he had a less than 1% chance to survive.

As it turned out, the turn came #Ah and then the river #Ad, which sent the final table into hysterics.

Busquet not only survived but went on to defeat Dan Colman heads-up for the title and €896,434. Watch the hand starting at around 1h25m below:

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Watch EPT100 Barcelona (S11) Live Stream Right Here!

Created By:
18 August 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog, Tournament Trail

One of the most anticipated stops ever on the European Poker Tour - the 100th EPT event in history - is firing on all cylinders this week from Barcelona, Spain.

Kicking off with a record-breaking Estrellas Poker Tour Main Event, attendance numbers are through the roof as players flock to the sunny shores of BCN.

Live streaming began an Tuesday, August 19, with Day 2 of the 50k Super High Roller event and will continue right through until next Wednesday when an EPT100 Barcelona Main Event champ is crowned.

Commentary, as always, will be provided by James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton and special guests.

Click through/read on for the full webcast schedule!

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10 Hilarious, Imaginative or Unsettling Poker Video Adverts

Created By:
18 June 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog
dutch film crew 2

Make no mistake. Poker is a game mainly played by guys, so there will be a lot of sex and beer in these clips.

But there are other things, too. There are many creative people in this industry, and you’ll see a lot of that here.

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Watch 2014 PokerStars Canada Cup Main Event Live Stream Here!

Created By:
26 May 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

The 2014 PokerStars Canada Cup Main Event is down to just nine players at the world-class Playground Poker Club in Montreal with an impressive line-up of local and international pros.

Brazilian Thiago Nishijima and Ankush "pistons87" Mandavia are the headliners along with local French-Canadians Vincent Jacques and Francois Goulet.

Catch the cards-up final table coverage today starting at 12 ET. Commentary from the legendary broadcast team of Joe Stapleton, James Hartigan and guests.

Click through/read on for full schedule.

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rooney koon2

Playing in the World Cup of football (soccer) is a boyhood dream for everyone even remotely interested in the beautiful game.

Many of poker's most high-profile stars have shared the same dream - but somehow ended up playing cards instead.

Thousands of poker players will be glued to the TV screens at the Rio in Las Vegas this summer following the World Cup in Brazil, and you might find yourself doing a double take every now and then as you look up at the TV and across the table at your fellow players.

PokerListings Denmark's Thomas Hviid has put together a team of poker pro/football player lookalikes (and a coach) he thinks might turn your head. Enjoy!

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Russell Thomas

Mainstream media tends to portray professional poker players as reckless gamblers (to be fair, a stereotype that holds true in certain cases).

But in reality being a consistent winner at the poker table requires discipline that would make stock brokers uneasy.

In a game where your edge is relatively small, you’ve got to use every available advantage to simply stay afloat. Successful poker pros are walking encyclopedias of methods to reduce risk and increase profit.

These secret tricks don’t just work for poker. A great deal of common poker knowledge is actually invaluable in everyday situations in business or even your personal life.

Rookie poker players have their minds blown by when they're introduced to concepts such as EV (expected value) and how variance truly works. It’s an eye-opening experience to say the least.

Maybe you’ll never sit at a poker table, but don’t let that keep you from benefiting from decades of knowledge developed over countless hours at poker tables around the world.

Here are 10 ways to hack your life with secrets from professional poker:

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Watch UKIPT4 Nottingham Main Event Live Stream Right Here!

Created By:
09 May 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

The 2014 UKIPT4 Nottingham £1m GTD Main Event is underway as we speak with a flotilla of big names making their presence felt.

Liv Boeree, Fatima Moreira de Melo, Roberto Romanello, EPT Grand Final runner-up Jack Salter, Dave "Devilfish" Ulliott and more are tossing chips around with the convivilaity and general insouciance we've come to know and love in British poker.

The final two days of action will be immortalized via live stream and you can catch it right here on

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View the EPT Grand Final (S10) Live Stream Here!

Created By:
23 April 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

The culmination of every European Poker Tour season - the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo - is always spectacular.

From the luxury setting to the massive cash games to the thrilling main event itself, it's the poker event of the year in Europe.

Live streaming from the Casino Monte Carlo starts on Thursday (April 24) with some extraordinary bonus coverage mixed in.

Commentary as always provided by James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton and a revolving cast of amazing guests. Tune in daily to watch it here!

Click through/read on for the full webcast schedule.

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Watch EPT San Remo (S10) Live Stream Right Here!

Created By:
14 April 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

One of the biggest and most popular stops on the European Poker Tour fires up again this week from San Remo, Italy.

Live streaming for the EPT San Remo main event gets underway Wednesday (April 16) with the start of Day 2.

Daily feature-table coverage will run right through until Sunday when the champ is crowned.

Commentary as always will be provided by James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton and special guests.

Click through/read on for the full webcast schedule.

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eatprayshove 3

Noted Swedish grinder Sofia “welllbet” Lövgren recently left long-time sponsor PKR Poker for the “next big adventure.”

What is that next project? No one is quite sure but thanks to her marketability in Sweden she might garner some attention from industry titans such as PokerStars or iPoker.

We suggest she take some time off to discover herself like Julia Roberts in Eat Pray Love. Albeit with more poker.

It’s with that in mind that we’ve put together a movie poster for Eat Pray Shove, which we’d definitely watch over the Roberts’ feature.

Check below for the complete poster:

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Watch EPT Vienna (S10) Live Stream Right Here!

Created By:
22 March 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

A record-smashing Eureka Poker Tour main event led into Season 10's EPT Vienna stop in grand style this week with over 1,400 players.

Live streaming for EPT Vienna gets underway Sunday with bonus cards-up final table coverage of the Eureka Main Event.

Daily feature-table coverage of the EPT Vienna main event picks up on Monday with Day 1b and continues right through until Saturday when the champ is crowned.

Commentary as always will be provided by James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton and special guests. Catch the coverage right here on PokerListings every day!

Click through/read on for the full webcast schedule.

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People/Things Less Trustworthy than Poker Players

Created By:
21 March 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog, Poker Comedy

We'll give you this: Some of the less-than-stellar public perception of poker and its players has been earned.

From the backroom scallywags of the 70s to the personal and corporate shams of recent past sketchiness has, admittedly, always been a thread in poker's fabric.

Dig a little deeper, though, and plenty of people in the game for decades would stake their fortunes on the integrity of poker players.

Among the old guard, the gambler's code still holds. Among the new school, personal reputation and membership in a trusted community are what careers are built on.

There's always going to be a hint of shadiness in high cash-flow industries but, all things considered, poker players get a bad rap for the actions of a small few.

To prove it, here's a running list of people/things we currently trust less. Feel free to add yours in the comments. (Note: Yes, we know this is stupid. It's a joke.)

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Watch WPT Live Show/Live Stream from WPT Venice Right Here!

Created By:
09 March 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog

On the heels of a smashing success at WPT Prague the WPT Live Show and full final-table live stream is back for the WPT Venice main event.

Hosted by much-loved poker industry vet Jesse May, the Live Show will run nightly from 8-8:30 pm (CET) M-F with a round-up of the day's action plus interviews with a mix of pros, PartyPoker reps Kara Scott and Jamie Kerstetter and the Royal Flush Girls.

On Saturday the full live stream coverage of the main event final table will air with commentary from May and special guests.

Each night along the way partypoker will also offer special tournaments, promos and rake races online with a VIP Package to WPT Cyprus on the table.

If you miss it live check in anytime before the next show to watch the replay; check the full schedule below:

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Separated at Birth: Andreas Høivold and DS9’s Odo

Created By:
07 March 2014
Posted in: The Poker Reporter Blog, Poker Comedy
Odo and Hoivold

Did you know Scandinavian poker pro Andreas Høivold can shape shift?

Neither did we but you’ve gotta admit he looks slightly like surly Deep Space Nine constable/shape shifter Odo.

We’ve never thought about it before but Odo has a pretty killer poker face. It gets even better when he turns into his natural gelatinous form.

Meanwhile Høivold actually has $1.7 million in real-life lifetime tournament earnings including a cash in PokerListings’ own Battle of Malta last fall. So there’s that. 

Who are your favorite poker players and pop culture figures that were separated at birth? Leave your picks in the comments.

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Frankenpoker ivey face

We’ve been in the poker coverage game for over a decade now and we’ve developed a few theories on what makes the great players so damn good.

With that in mind we’ve created the monstrosity you see above, which is a Frankenstein-style collection of some of the most famous poker players in the world.

If you ever see this guy staring across at you from the other side of the table you might as well fold your hand, give him all your chips and give up poker for Uno tournaments.

For those keeping track at home here’s a breakdown of the world’s greatest poker player.

  • 1. Phil Ivey’s intense stare, obv.
  • 2. French Canadian pro Erik Cajelais’ fearsome right arm. Perfect for raising. Or punching.
  • 3. Scotty Nguyen’s luxurious hair. That’s Prince of Poker style, baby.
  • 4. Doyle Brunson’s iconic cowboy hat. It’s seen things.
  • 5. Teddy “Iceman” Monroe’s diamond headphones. The most baller item in poker.
  • 6. Dan Bilzerian’s beard. Hey this girl can’t be wrong.
  • 7. Viktor “Isildur1” Blom’s laptop. Ready for multi-tabling.
  • 8. Daniel Negreanu’s laugh (not pictured). That’s how you make the fish feel comfortable.

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