Posts Tagged ‘WPT’

WPT Announces First Half of Season XIII Schedule

by | Published: Monday, June 2nd, 2014

The World Poker Tour announced the schedule for the first half of its upcoming Season XIII last week. Between June and December 2014, the WPT will be busy as it makes its way to four continents.

The WPT and Fox Sports Network will also continue their broadcasting agreement signed last year, which assures full distribution of the WPT’s televised events through 2017.

“Season XII was a monumental year for the World Poker Tour and our partners around the globe,” said WPT President Adam Pliska. “From the WPT World Championship held for the first time at the Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, a 1,795 record-setting field at the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown, and a greater than 50% increase in our viewership on FOX Sports Networks to our new collaboration with DeepStacks Poker Tour and three multi-year partnership deals with DraftKings, Monster Headphones, and Swiss luxury watch brand Hublot, we couldn’t be happier with our expansion during Season XII or more excited about our plans for Season XIII.”

World Poker Tour Executive Tour Director Matt Savage added, “Coming off a very successful Season XII highlighted by some record-setting numbers and fantastic new locations, the World Poker Tour marches into lucky Season XIII with more new global stops and many of the great tournaments that have made the WPT the most player-friendly tour in poker.”

After beginning the summer in Italy, the WPT will move to London in July for the partpoker WPT National UK: London. From there, the WPT will host the usual tournaments throughout North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Caribbean for the rest of the year. Take a look at the first half of the WPT Season XIII schedule below:

Event Venue Dates Buy-In
Gioco Digitale WPT National Campione Casinó Campione Campione, Italy Jun. 5 – Jun. 9 €990
partypoker WPT National UK: London Aspers Casino London, UK Jul. 3 – Jul. 6 £200
partypoker presents: WPT500 at ARIA Resort & Casino ARIA Resort & Casino Las Vegas, NV Jul. 4 – Jul 9 $565 WPT National Valencia Casino Cirsa Valencia Valencia, Spain Jul. 15 – Jul. 17 €1,500 WPT National Valencia Casino Cirsa Valencia Valencia, Spain Jul. 17 – Jul. 20 €550
WPT National Brussels Grand Casino Brussel Viage, Belgium Jul. 18 – Jul. 21 €750
WPT Western Poker Challenge Atlantis Resort and Spa Reno, NV Aug. 22 – Aug. 24 $1,080
WPT Legends of Poker* Bicycle Casino Bell Gardens, CA Aug. 23 – Aug. 29 $3,700
partypoker WPT Merit Classic North Cyprus Merit Crystal Cove Casino Kyrenia, North Cyprus Sep. 5 – Sep. 10 $4,400
WPT Borgata Poker Open* Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa Atlantic City, NJ Sep. 14 – Sep. 19 $3,500
Monster Invitational* Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa Atlantic City, NJ Sep. 21 Invitational WPT National Marrakech Casino Es Saadi Marrakech, Morocco Oct. 9 – Oct. 12 13,500 MAD (13% Withheld)
WPT National China MGM Grand Sanya Hainan, China Oct. 28 – Nov. 3 $1,760
WPT National Brussels Grand Casino Brussel Viage, Belgium Oct. 31 – Nov. 2 €750
WPT bestbet Poker Scramble* bestbet Jacksonville, FL Nov. 7 – Nov. 11 $5,000
WPT Emperors Palace Poker Classic Emperors Palace Hotel Casino Johannesburg, South Africa Nov. 13 – Nov. 16 $3,600
partypoker WPT UK Dusk Till Dawn Nottingham, UK Nov. 18 – Nov. 23 £3,000 (10% Withheld)
WPT Montreal* Playground Poker Club Quebec, CA Nov. 20 – Nov. 26 $3,850 WPT National Paris Cercle Clichy Montmartre Paris, France Dec. 4 – Dec. 7 €1,200 (10% Withheld)
WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic* Bellagio Las Vegas, NV Dec. 15 – Dec. 20 $10,300

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Global Poker Index Update

by | Published: Thursday, May 15th, 2014

GPI company logo


The Global Poker Index releases a list of the top 300 tournament poker players in the world every week, using a formula that rates a player’s results over six half-year periods. The GPI also ranks the top performing players of the year over two six-month periods, using the USA Today Global Poker Index point system to calculate.

2014 GPI Player of the Year

Rank Player GPI Score Change
1 Keven Stammen 893.30 -
2 Ole Schemion 803.21 -
3 Alex Bilokur 800.07 -
4 Scott Seiver 633.26 -
5 Shyam Srinivasan 626.96 -
6 Mike McDonald 608.20 -
7 Byron Kaverman 600.23 -
8 Ami Barer 594.74 -
9 Alexander Denisov 581.06 -
10 Mustapha Kanit 573.50 -


As you can see, there is no change to the GPI Player of the Year top ten, though Dan Heimiller is knocking on the door. After adding four more cashes to his pot at the Chicago Poker Classic, including two 11th-place finishes for $1,768 and $2,037, he could be breaking into the top ten in no time.


courtesy of

Keven Stammen remains the clear leader, trailed by 2013 GPI Player of the Year Ole Schemion by ninety points. Stammen’s huge lead comes after winning the Season XII WPT World Championship for $1.35 million back in April. In five months, Stammen has already gained 76.8 percent of the points Schemion needed in 2013 to take out the POY title, but he’s also already filled 12 of his 13 eligible results.

The GPI takes the 13 best results achieved by a player throughout the year, and Stammen should easily be able to replace a small cash prize he registered in January that only netted him 2.19 points.


GPI 300 Top 10

Rank Player GPI Score Change
1 Ole Schemion 4016.37 -
2 Scott Seiver 3747.12 -
3 Philipp Gruissem 3599.78 -
4 Byron Kaverman 3438.18 1
5 Vanessa Selbst 3427.99 -1
6 Marvin Rettenmaier 3399.67 -
7 Dan Smith 3339.95 1
8 Stephen Chidwick 3282.26 2
9 Jason Mercier 3222.40 -2
10 Jonathan Duhamel 3186.87 3


Schemion may still be trailing to Stammen in the GPI POY, but he’s well and truly out in front in the GPI 300 Top 10 players. With a score of 4016.37, he’s over 250 points clear of his closest rival Scott Seiver.

2010 World Series of Poker champion Jonathan Duhamel rejoins the top 10 this week, taking fellow Canadian Mike McDonald’s spot. McDonald fell seven spots to No. 16 after two decaying scores – his fifth and second place finishes in side events at the Season 9 PokerStars and Monte-Carlo Casino EPT Grand Final.

Byron Kaverman leapfrogged the only woman in the top ten, Vanessa Selbst, moving to the No. 4 spot in the world. Kaverman already has over $1.3M in live tournament winnings for 2014, after finishing runner-up to Stammen in the WPT World Championship.

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WPT and DeepStacks Join Forces for Global Poker Tour

by | Published: Thursday, May 1st, 2014

The World Poker Tour, which has long been known for creating some of the largest and most prestigious poker tournaments the world over, has been focusing on recruiting more recreational players of late by creating more affordable buy-in events.

In 2010 the WPT created two such tournament circuits – the WPT Regional Series and the WPT National Series – which introduced less pricey Main Events than previous tournaments while still offering the opportunity to play alongside some of the game’s most recognizable players.

Only last week, the WPT announced a new event set to join this roster of successful, cheaper events. The new $560 buy-in event is coming to Las Vegas this summer with $1 million in prize money guaranteed.

“We are extremely excited to announce partypoker presents: WPT500 at Aria Resort & Casino, WPT’s newest tournament format,” said WPT President Adam Pliska. “It’s nice to be back in Las Vegas, hosting our first event at ARIA and partnering again with partypoker to bring poker players to this special $500 + $65 buy-in event.”

Now, it’s been announced that the WPT has teamed up with the DeepStacks Poker Tour to form WPTDeepStacks, which will replace the existing WPT Regional and DeepStacks Poker Tour brands.

“This is one of those rare win-win-wins,” said Pliska. “Combining WPT’s brand with DSPT’s staff and cutting-edge approach is a victory for both brands. We couldn’t be more excited about what this means for poker players everywhere.”

The newly-branded tour will offer players larger prize pools, bigger fields, and the addition of a seat into the 2015 WPT World Championship as part of the new WPTDeepStacks Player of the Year race.

The first WPTDeepStacks Main Event kicks off this weekend at the Turlock Poker Room & Casino in California. The $1,000 buy-in event, hosted by DeepStacks Pro Tristan Wade, begins on Friday, May 2 and features two starting flights.

“WPTDeepStacks completely redefines the mid-major tournament market, delivering a world class experience to low and medium buy-in players, at a fraction of the cost,” said DSPT President Chris Torina. “WPT is an exceptional brand to align with and this partnership will be an industry game changer.”

Other upcoming events in the series include:

May 23 – June 1: The Bicycle Casino – Los Angeles

September 20-28: Grey Eagle Casino – Calgary

October 4-12: Casino Yellowhead – Edmonton

October 22-26: Aspers Casino Westfield Stratford City – London

November 5-9: Dragonara Casino – Malta

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Major Changes at World Poker Tour Championship

by | Published: Tuesday, April 22nd, 2014

The Season XII WPT World Championship, which began on Monday April 21, at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa in Atlantic City, New Jersey, has seen some major changes in its structure.

For the first time ever, the tour’s season-ending event will be held outside of Las Vegas, Nevada. The World Poker Tour Championship event spent its first 11 seasons at the Bellagio in LV, which was once considered the poker mecca of the world.

However, as World Poker Tour President Adam Pliska put it, “sometimes you just gotta shake things up.

“The numbers in the Championship were down and people were noticing that,” Pliska said. “The WPT Championship is something special. With so many other changes that have happened on the World Poker Tour, at some point you have to tend to the championship. It’s a focal point.”

For years, the WPT Championship at the Bellagio was the must-play poker tournament of the season for the game’s biggest superstars. More than $60 million in prize money has been won in the event since 2003, making it the most lucrative event on the WPT schedule by a mile.

However, attendance for the event has been dwindling every year bar one since 2007, where Carlos Mortensen defeated a field of 639 to win nearly $4 million. Compare this to last year’s event, where only 146 players participated. This was the smallest turnout since the debut season of 111 participants in 2003.

This decline, coupled with player feedback about the Bellagio, resulted in some major adjustments being made to the Championship Event this year.

In September, the tour announced Borgata as the new home for its flagship event. Pliska says Atlantic City was chosen due to the parent company’s new presence in NJ’s burgeoning online poker market.

“The moving of the WPT Championship is as much about celebrating legalized, regulated gaming in the United States as anything else,” Pliska told PokerNews. “What we need now in the poker community is to celebrate that as much as possible in order to spread it into multiple states and every state. I think this could open up a lot of opportunities for people to play in WPT events.”

Pliska and his team decided to take advantage of the online poker market for this year’s Championship. Five seats to the tournament have been given away through satellites at, in addition to qualifiers at and even, the official fantasy sports partner of the WPT.

In another move to make the tournament more accessible, the $25,000 price tag was slashed to $15,400. The championship event will also carry a $5 million guaranteed prize pool, with at least $1.35 million going to the champion. The last time the WPT Championship prize pool hit $5 million was in 2011, which was also the last time a player won over $1.35 million.

“When you’re changing tradition, I think you’ve got to reevaluate things. And we have,” Pliska said. “There had been a lot of push to keep the Championship at a level that is prestigious, but at the same time bringing it down to a more accessible level. So that’s what we did.

“We’ll try this, take player feedback and see how it goes.”

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Borgata Introduces State-of-the-Art Poker Chips Following January Scandal

by | Published: Friday, April 11th, 2014

Poker enthusiasts out there may remember the counterfeit chip scandal that rocked the Borgata Winter Poker Open $2 Million Guarantee. The event was suspended, and later cancelled, after counterfeit chips were found in a player’s hotel toilet. Christian Lusardi, 42, was ultimately charged for the crime.

Borgata aren’t willing to let anything like it happen again. In preparation for the 2014 Borgata Spring Poker Open, which is happening right now, the Borgata Casino Hotel & Spa has introduced a new range of poker chips.

The new state-of-the-art chips were created for the 17-event series running from April 8 – 26 that culminates with the $5 million guarantee World Poker Tour Championship.

Tournament Director Tab Duchateau tweeted a picture of the new chips on Monday, along with the message “Borgata Spring Open Event 1a 1 mill guar. starts tom. at 11am. will be using new chips with enhanced security #warned.”

The poker chips have distinct special markings when viewed under a blue light, making it instantly easier to spot counterfeit ones. Since Monday, the tournament staff has been verifying chips at every table during each break.

“This was very expensive, but very necessary,” Borgata Senior Vice President Joe Lupo told the Associated Press. “In order to have the biggest tournaments in Atlantic City and as the market leader, we need to ensure the integrity of the games.”

“We will be checking chips randomly throughout the day using a new process involving the UV lights,” Lupo concluded.

The European Poker Tour (EPT) recently used similar blue-light technology in its most recent stop in Vienna.

A member of the Borgata staff also spoke to PokerNews Live Reporting Team, and revealed there are “other” means of verifying chips in their power. To keep these a secret from possible cheaters, the verification process was no further explained.

We will see during the rest of the Open if these anti-counterfeit measures find any potential cheaters.

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