First Round Match Ups Set for NBC Heads-Up

Phil Ivey
Phil Ivey will take on Dan "Jungleman" Cates in the first round at the NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship this weekend.

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:

Spades Bracket

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

Diamonds Bracket

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

Clubs Bracket

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

Hearts Bracket

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

Best Poker Sites - Editor`s Pick

Latest Blogs »