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First Round Match Ups Set for NBC Heads-Up
The NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship held its annual Draw Party at PURE nightclub inside Caesars Palace Thursday setting the match-ups for the event's first round.
Play starts at 12 p.m. Friday with the 64-player field featuring some rather interesting match-ups.
Fans of the high-stakes games online are in for a treat as the marquee first-round match will feature 2010's biggest winner online, Dan "Jungleman" Cates, taking on online poker's biggest winner all-time, the legendary Phil Ivey.
Other highlights include former WSOP Main Event champs Peter Eastgate and Chris Ferguson going to to toe, actor and NBC heads-up veteran Don Cheadle taking on online poker posterboy Tom "durrrr" Dwan, Dwyte Pilgrim and Olivier Busquet facing off in a match-up of WPT Borgata champions, and one of the hottest players in the game, 2010 CardPlayer Player of the Year Tom Marchese up against the forgotten Phil Gordon.
With the buy-in increased from $20,000 to $25,000 this year, the bracket-style head-to-head event will feature a $1.8 million prize pool with $750,000 reserved for first.
The competition will play down to 32 Friday and to a winner by Sunday.
All the action will be taped for broadcast on NBC over six consecutive Sundays in April and May.
Here's the run down of the entire first round:
Doyle Brunson vs. Jennifer Tilly
Erick Lindgren vs. Dennis Phillips
Dan Cates vs. Phil Ivey
John Racener vs. Chris Moneymaker
Carlos Mortensen vs. Sam Trickett
Eric Baldwin vs. David Oppenheim
Patrik Antonius vs. Sorel Mizzi
Eugene Katchalov vs. Faraz Jaka
Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier vs. Justin Young
Joe Hachem vs. Phil Galfond
Vanessa Selbst vs. Eli Elezra
Peter Eastgate vs.Chris Ferguson
Huck Seed vs. Jennifer Harman
Erik Seidel vs. Allen Cunningham
Mike Matusow vs. Greg Raymer
Thomas Marchese vs. Phil Gordon
Dwyte Pilgrim vs. Olivier Busquet
Liv Boeree vs. Jason Alexander
Jason Mercier vs. Ted Forrest
Andy Bloch vs. John Juanda
Barry Greenstein vs. Scotty Nguyen
Annette Obrestad vs. Ayaz Mahmood
Jonathan Duhamel vs. Melburn Whitmire
Nicolas Chouity vs. Antonio Esfandiari
Kara Scott vs. David Peat
David Williams vs. Emmitt Smith
Gavin Smith vs. Gus Hansen
James Bord vs. Frank Kassela
Phil Laak vs. Daniel Negreanu
Michael Mizrachi vs. Vanessa Rousso
Don Cheadle vs. Tom Dwan
Phil Hellmuth vs. David Benyamine