LAS VEGAS, November 9, 2005 -- Professional poker player Mike Matusow shocked the gambling world today by outlasting the biggest names in the game to win the Tournament of Champions (TOC) and $1 million at Caesars Palace Casino in Las Vegas. The second annual Tournament of Champions began Sunday, Nov. 6 with a field of 114 players. The Tournament of Champions was presented by Sobe Adrenaline Rush energy drink. The final table lasted more than 11 hours.
"This was the best final table I've ever played," said Matusow. "To win this tournament puts me in the elite category."
The TOC is a freeroll event - players are not required to put up any of their own money to enter - that awarded a total of $2 million in prize money. In addition to the $1 million first-prize won by Matusow, an additional $1 million was split between the other eight players at the final table.
"Great poker comes from great competition and that's what this tournament was all about," said Jeffrey Pollack, vice president of sports and entertainment marketing for Harrah's Entertainment, Inc. "The energy, excitement and passion of the players and fans will be remembered for a long time."
ESPN, the official broadcast partner of the World Series of Poker, provided comprehensive coverage of the Tournament of Champions, which is scheduled to be telecast from 1p.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern Time on Dec. 24, 2005.
The World Series of Poker is owned and operated by an affiliate of Harrah's Operating Company, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Harrah's Entertainment. Caesars Palace is a Harrah's-brand casino.# # #