Poker takes spotlight in L.A. in September

Kenny Tran
WSOP bracelet winner Kenny Tran joins the WSOP Academy on its first stop in his home town.

The World Series of Poker Academy will make its first-ever trip to Los Angeles next month. The poker instructional school will be heading to the Bicycle Casino Sept. 6-7.

The L.A. stop for the WSOP Academy also marks the addition of another prominent pro to the lineup of instructors. Kenny Tran will be helping teach during the seminars along with Annie Duke, poker tells expert Joe Navarro, Alex Outhred and more.

"The WSOP Academy is coming off another amazing summer at the World Series of Poker that saw one of our Academy grads again at a final table just days after attending our camp," said Brandon Rosen of Post Oak Productions, the company that produces the WSOP Academy.

"And we're now excited to offer our first academy experience in Los Angeles and welcome 2008 WSOP bracelet winner Kenny Tran, one of L.A.'s most noted poker professionals, to our family of instructors."

Tran is coming off his first WSOP bracelet win at this year's series. He took down the $10,000 Championship Heads-Up No-Limit Hold'em event for a tidy sum of $539,040. That win helped boost his tournament earnings over the years up over $2 million.

Tran's knowledge and skills will only add to what participants can learn in the WSOP Academy with its in-depth seminars, live hand demonstrations, interactive workshops and customized handbooks covering all aspects of No-Limit Texas Hold'em strategy.

"Like all of our WSOP Academy events, our Los Angeles event will give players the confidence and skills they need to be a threat at the table, whether they're playing in a home game with friends or at the World Series of Poker against the best in the game."

The Academy covers all aspects of the game from playing position and calculating pot odds to the importance of aggression and changing gears.

Former FBI agent and authority on nonverbal communication Joe Navarro will also be making his first trip to Los Angeles to teach poker tells during the WSOP Academy.

After 25 years with the FBI where he became one of the foremost authorities on reading nonverbal communications that people exhibit when they're lying, Navarro has applied his knowledge to poker.

"I look forward to working with WSOP Academy students in Los Angeles to help them see inside their opponents and change the way they view the game," Navarro said.

"I plan on spending time working with players individually and spotting tells that they are giving off at the table. I truly believe that this type of personalized attention can save a player a lot of money in the long run."

The WSOP Academy isn't just about dishing out poker advice in a schoolroom format either. It is a total-immersion poker experience that also gives participants the opportunity to hang out and play poker with their classmates and the instructors.

After the first day of instruction, the Academy will host a tournament in which the participants will play for a $5,000 seat to the WSOP Circuit event of their choice plus other prizes.

"The Academy's tournament is an exciting way for our participants to put into action what they've learned over the day and test their wits at the table against the world's best like Annie Duke and Kenny Tran," Rosen said.

The cost of the WSOP Academy Los Angeles event is $1,499, and space is limited to 100 participants. Additional details for this event and all other Academy events are available at or by calling 1-800-989-WSOP.

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