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March 2006

Friday Night Parting Shot: Marissa


A blue-eyed Irish girl raised in Orange County and ends up in NYC to focus on acting, singing, and a little modeling on the side? Too good to be true? Perhaps. Find out more about Marissa over at her space on MySpace. Be prepared to pause the Shakira song.

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Happy Birthday Wicked Chops In Pictures, Part 3

Our birthday week is coming to an end, and so we bid farewell with an image tribute to a few of the peeps who wished us a happy. Some did with a photo, others did with a "Happy Birthday Douchebags!" and still others, like Sammy "Killer" Reid, were left at the mercy of Chops' photoshop skills. Click on some of the images below, and if you missed Part 1 and Part 2 of this Happy Birthday Wicked Chops Poker in Pictures series, be sure to check them out.


And one last photo after the jump...

Continue reading "Happy Birthday Wicked Chops In Pictures, Part 3" »

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Happy Birthday Wicked Chops In Pictures, Part 2


So we're being a little self-indulgent with this Happy Birthday Wicked Chops Poker stuff, but hey, we don't take ourselves seriously enough to care.

We hope you don't either.

And so we continue with another round of haps doled out by two of our favorite poker ladies, the fabulous Jen Leo and the illustrious Joanne Lutynec.

If you're unacquainted with Jen Leo you're a poor lost soul who is so far away from self-actualization it ain't even funny, or something like that. Jen's both a lover and a fighter but most importantly a non-stop writer. A woman after our own wicked chop hearts, Leo has penned books with titles such as Sand in My Bra, Whose Panties Are These?, and The Thong Also Rises. Jen's the photoshop wiz responsible for the image above to the left (complete with Leo and the 3 WCPers) and be sure to check out her accompanying post over at her JenLeo blog.

And while Card Squad's Joanne had us at "poker," we have a feeling she'd be more after our own bankrolls than hearts. Joanne's proven herself to be more than capable at the poker table, writing about tournament strategy over at Card Squad and currently ranked #10 thus far in the WPBT POY race. With Wicked Chops very own Chops currently sitting at #16, stay tuned for an announcement on a little Card Squad/WCP WPBT challenge sometime soon. And by the way, if you're not reading what Joanne and the Card Squad, eh, squad are dishing out daily, consider yourself uniformed. Joanne, Wil Wheaton and Derek McGuire are a tireless crew with one of the smartest looking and consistently current poker blogs you'll find.

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Happy Birthday Wicked Chops In Pictures

Bwcndle_1Meet Adarsha Benjamin. She's a rising young actress, producer and one of the coolest and sweetest we know, and when she heard it was WCP's b-day, was kind enough to send some love our way in a series of photos (posted after the jump).

Adarsha hails from the "sprawling city of sunshine and surgery" and is currently starring in the indie horror/love flick "I'll Be There With You" alongside our favorite Baldwin bro, Daniel (remember Danny's 'coked-up' performance in the WPT celeb game?). The film is directed by Akihiro "Aki" Kitamura of Japan and has already premiered in LA and will now see the screen for the first time on the east coast this April.

So while you check out her pics after the jump, we ask that you be sure to check out Adarsha's new film when it comes your way. Also, stay posted for more birthday photos later today.

Continue reading "Happy Birthday Wicked Chops In Pictures" »

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The DUEL OF THE CENTURY: Spek Responds

Earlier in the week, we posted a challenge from soon-to-be-featured-at-the-Aussie-Millions-Jeff-Sealey to online blogger and respected self-promoter Spek.  Not too long after the challenge was issued, Spek responded with the following:

    Spektacular_1I've read your post and also read a few articles on Jeff...Obviously, $600 is pocket change to this guy-- he's a poker pro who placed 5th in the Australian open and I made a few hundred grinding it out on small $20 sngs...see a difference? Anyway, I'm not risking my whole bankroll on one heads up. I will, however, play him 1 on 1 in pokerstars for $100 + whatever the PS rake. If he choses to accept, let me know and we'll set a date.


Seems reasonable.  Sealey of course is game, so all that now stands in the way for the DUEL OF THE CENTURY to take place is the details. Also, for all you bloggers out there, Spek will be hosting a tournament on Poker Stars for you to test your skills against the guy who is building his bankroll from $10 to...who knows? Check it out and sign up...if you dare.

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Someone Other Than Barry Greenstein Wins WPT World Poker Challenge

Excitedgreenstein_2 Although he was second in chips going into the final table and the clear favorite to win his third WPT title, Barry Greenstein's day ended fairly quickly at the World Poker Challenge.

On the fourth hand of final table play, Greenstein and (spoiler-alert) eventual winner Mike Simon both flopped trip eights, but unfortunately the kicker to this cruel joke on Barry was that Simon held an Ace, out kicking him.  Barry was crippled (figuratively, not literally) and was knocked out nine hands later. He only earned $85,370 for his sixth place finish, raising ire among poor children around the world who NEEDED this money*.

After Greenstein was eliminated, some other guys played and eventually Simon pulled out the victory.  Final table finishes payouts were: 1) Michael Simon - 1,052,890, 2) Jason Stern - 529,300, 3) Tom Schneider - 256,115, 4) Greg 'FBT' Mueller - 142,285 5) Jonas Norrman - 113,830.

*Unsubstantiated and untrue.

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Never Saw This One Coming: Anna Benson Wants to Divorce Her Less Famous Husband, Kris

Bensona(Publicity) whore Anna Benson of Gold Digger Poker has decided that she cannot bare her marriage any longer. 

Yes, Anna Benson...has filed...for divorce.

We're sure that the emotional journey to reach this decision was difficult. But once she stripped down and realized her most naked emotions, Anna Benson, of Gold Digger Poker, knew it was time to move on.

Let's just say that there's nary a man in America who doesn't think he has a chance right now.

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Shannon Elizabeth is an Actress

Shannonelizabeth_wsopWith regular appearances at poker tournaments and on the red carpet of poker-related parties, Shannon Elizabeth has almost become as famous for her card tossing exploits as for her titillating exposé of an adventurous yet generally misunderstood foreign exchange student in the groundbreaking, coming-of-age (or was it coming-in-a-baked-good) film American Pie.

In fact we almost forgot she was an actress.

Or was she ever?

Thespianic appraisal aside, it has been announced that the beauty has landed a major role in the upcoming poker film, Deal, which looks to be a poker rendition of The Color of Money. Playing the part of the Paul Newman-like mentor will be Burt Reynolds, and in the Tom Cruise shoes will be Bret Harrison, who currently stars on the new TV show, "The Loop," which we aren't sure what we think of yet.

In the Gil Cates, Jr. written and to-be-directed-by film, Reynolds plays an ex-gambler who teaches Harrison's character how to play poker. The two have a falling out and (ok, if you don't want an unexpected spoiler don't read on) the mentor and protege find themselves competing heads up in the World Poker Tour championships.

Cameos include poker pros Phil "The Unabomber" Laak and Antonio "The Magician" Esfandiari, as well as Mike Sexton's sidekick Vince Van Patten.

In other Shannon Elizabeth, semi-poker related news, Elizabeth's ex and Annie Duke's current has filed a lawsuit seeking half of all assets the two accumulated during the five years they lived together before they were married.

What a bitch. Reitman that is.

And finally in completely unrelated American Pie alum news, the perpetually sloppy Tara Reid will star in a bowling movie called 7-10 Split. We kid you not. If you have the stomach for it, a very unpleasant photo of a drunk Tara Reid (that's redundant) after the jump, courtesy of TheSuperficial.com. Actually, please don't look. You see, while masturbating can make you go blind, this photo will make you wish you were.

Continue reading "Shannon Elizabeth is an Actress" »

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The Blogfiles: The Obituarium


Chops here.

During Iggy's first WSOP qualifier two weeks ago, I was moved to a table where, among others, Joe Speaker sat.  I was short-stacked and ready to move in with any pair or face cards.  Immediately upon sitting my butt down in my new virtual seat, the following popped up in the Paradise Poker chat: Joe Speaker: "Chops, who do I have to blow to get on the blogfiles?"  Someone then typed: "Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzip."  Then I got dealt K-T in the BB went all-in was called by A-Q didn't win the hand and someone else typed something to the effect of: "Damn Joe see what you just did to him" or something like that.

Anyway, we're glad to have the Obituarium on board for what turned out to be a very funny Blogfile.  Enjoy.

MansionWCP: So, the Playboy Mansion sucked, right?

JS: Absolutely. Free food, open bar, beautiful women, a bunch of my friends, poker, a spiraling-into-oblivion Tara Reid, beautiful women.  Nothing I'd be interested in. At times, it felt simply liike a party,  then it would hit me where I was. I'd step back, raise my arms wide to shoulder height, tilt back my head and bellow, "Ahhhhhhhhhhh." Then burly guys would tell me not to do that again.

It was something I'll never forget. And something I'll never let those that weren't there forget, either. I'm currently sending snail-mail letters written on the Playboy-embossed notepad I stole to
everyone I know.

WCP: Be honest though, the thought of taking advantage of a worn-out, VD-laden Tara Reid who was spiraling into oblivion possibly crossed your mind...

Continue reading "The Blogfiles: The Obituarium" »

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2+2 Forums Debate Best Poker Blogs --
Did You Make the Cut?

The 2+2 Forums are abuzz with talk of poker blogs.  Who are the best?  The usual suspects.  The worst?  Well, we're sure you all have your own opinions.

Give it a glancing.

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Wicked Chops Poker Goes Heads-Up With Mark Seif

Chops here.

SeiffeatureAfter leaving the law profession years ago to become a respected and successful poker player, Mark Seif truly exploded on the green felted landscape last summer by winning back-to-back WSOP bracelets.  One of poker’s more engaging personalities, Mark has parlayed that success into entertainment projects on the small and big screen, and has a book and DVD in the works. 

Mark is somehow managing all of this while still finding time to play some cards (both live and through his sponsor, Absolute Poker)—and taking on the responsibilities of being the proud father of a healthy newborn baby girl. 

I can barely take care of my freaking puppy and play a SNG. 

I’ll never complain about distractions again. 

I spoke with Mark last week about all of his projects, his WSOP plans this year, and much more. 

Chops: First of all, congrats on the new baby!

MS: Thanks! 

Chops: I bet you haven’t had much opportunity to play the past two weeks...

MS: I actually haven’t played at all live.  We had already planned though on me taking a month off before and a month off after the birth.  I have been able to play on Absolute Poker though.  And I’ll be playing in Reno [the WPT World Poker Challenge] and I’m really excited about that. 

Chops:  One thing I’ve gotta address...this nickname I'm seeing of yours.  Now my name is Chops.  It’s a long story how I got that name, but it’s all I’ve gone by for about 15 years now. Recently I’ve seen you referenced as Mark “The Shark” Seif.  Where’d that come from?  An Absolute Poker creation?

MS:  [Laughing]  Mark “the Shark” has actually been around for seven or eight years and originally came from being a lawyer.  It translates well to poker for obvious reasons, but I hadn’t even heard anyone call me that for years until recently…maybe starting last year after I won the two WSOP events.  You see it in the papers, and then all of the sudden people started calling me it again. 

Continue reading "Wicked Chops Poker Goes Heads-Up With Mark Seif" »

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Greenstein In Position For Another WPT Crown

The final table is set for the WPT World Poker Challenge in Reno, NV

Michael Simon is the overall chip leader with 1,195,000. Not far behind is two-time WPT winner Barry Greenstein with 1,085,000. Day 2 chip leader Tom Schneider is third overall with 1,020,000. The rest of the final table stacks are: 4) Jonas Norrman - 905,000, 5) Jason Stern - 880,000, and 6_ Greg 'FBT' Mueller - 835,000.

Liz Lieu, the Day 1 chip leader--and also a woman--was knocked out in 19th place. She was knocked out by our favorite Frenchman, Fabrice Soulier, who was knocked out in 13th.

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Happy Birthday To Us


Today, we celebrate one full year of Wicked Chops Poker on this here so-called "Internet." And so we say thanks to the readers for reading, the players for playing, the haters for hating, the crazy bitches for being crazy, the stupid poker criminals for being stupid, the Weaz for turning out to be a great guy, and of course, the hot girls for being hot (no links needed, just click on any week in our archives and scroll down).

If you're so inclined to wish us a happy, do so digitally by taking a pic of your pretty, or not so pretty mug, holding up a sign that says "Happy Birthday Wicked Chops Poker" (or Douchebags), and email it our way. We'll post some of the ones we receive later this week and if you have your own site will pimp it with a link.

- Wicked Chops Poker

p.s. a semi-NSFW, not-sexy-at-all, Hilton sister birthday wish after the jump...

Continue reading "Happy Birthday To Us" »

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Schneider Leads WPT Reno -- Lieu, Soulier, Greenstein, Mortensen Still Alive

OopsTom Schneider of Phoenix, AZ, author of "Oops! I Won Too Much Money -- Winning Wisdom from the Boardroom to the Poker Table", is positioned to build his bankroll.  Stacked at 507,000, he sits with the Day 2 chip lead at the WPT World Poker Challenge. 

Day 1 chip leader Liz Lieu continued her strong play, ending the day fourth overall in chips with 335,500.  And right behind her (in chips) is our favorite Frenchman Fabrice "The Frog" Soulier.  We now begrudgingly admit this guy has some serious, serious wicked poker chops.  He's stacked at 335,000.

Other notables include: 8) Chau Giang - 316,000, 11) Barry Greenstein - 246,000, 17) Carlos Mortensen - 175,000 27) Dan Schmiech - 51,000.

Get full chip counts of the remaining 27 players at Poker Wire.

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“Sir, I Challenge You To A Duel!” Will Spek Accept?

DduelBurr vs. HamiltonThe Duke of Wellington vs. the 10th Earl of WinchilseaKramer vs. KramerSealey vs. Spektacular?

Last week, we wrote about a press release issued by online blogger Spektacular. Spek is building a bankroll from $10 to...who knows?  But he's currently over $600.

After seeing this, WCP reader Jeff Sealey, who you will see early next month on FSN playing in the Aussie Millions (where he finished fifth) thought of a wonderful, marvelous idea: “I’ll challenge this guy for some serious money," he thought marvelously.

Sealey, who has wicked online poker chops, will challenge Spek heads-up for Spek’s entire bankroll—except for the $10 that Spek started with.  So if Spek has $610 in his bankroll at the time of the match-up, the challenge will be for $600.  The parameters for this heads-up duel are as follows:

:: The game must take place on Paradise Poker (Sealey’s sponsor).
:: The game will be no limit texas hold’em.
:: Sealey will match Spek’s bankroll (minus the $10) for the prize.  So if Spek wins, he will double his bankroll (minus the $10). If Sealey wins, Spek goes back down to $10.
:: Spek can name the date and time, so long as it’s no earlier than Friday, April 14th (giving us ample time to promote it).

The first stone has been cast. Will Spek rise to the challenge?

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A Woman Leads WPT Reno After Day 1...No That Wasn't a Typo

Wicked Chops Poker LOVES women.  So it's no surprise to us that Liz Lieu, a(n attractive) woman and not to be confused with J.J Lui, a (not so much attractive) woman who was the big stack at the WPT Five-Diamond Classic, leads the field at the WPT World Poker Challenge in Reno.

Liz_bgLieu is stacked...with about 117,200 chips.  Behind her (in chip count) is Paul Wasicka with 104,000.

Attempting to be the first woman to win a non-"Ladies Night" WPT event, Lieu (pictured at right) still has some tough competition to get through.  However, she won't have to worry about some of the toughest tournament gamers, as Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu, Antonio Esfandiari, Michael Mizrachi, and Erick Lindgren were among the nearly 400 casualties from the starting field of 592.

Among the big names still vying for the $1,052,890 top prize include but are not limited to: 9) Jean-Robert Bellande - 74,600, 10) Freddy Deeb - 73,600, 11) Carlos Mortensen - 73,300, 20) Barry Greenstein - 60,000, 24) Shawn Rice - 59,100, 55) Tobey Freaking Maguire - 37,800, 57) Hasan Habib - 37,100, and let's not forget about 99) Fabrice "The Frog" Soulier - 25,600.

Get full chip counts at Poker Wire.

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Coming This Week...

Let's set the stage for the world of Wicked Chops Poker this week:

:: The WPT's World Poker Challenge starts up in Reno, NV today.  Arnold Spee, a Wicked Chops fav, is the defending champ, besting a final table that included Phil Ivey and Blair Rodman last year.  Most of the name pros will be there, including Antonio Esfandiari, Daniel Negreanu (who last week said he was in consideration to be Gordon's Celebrity Poker Showdown replacement, a role eventually nabbed by Hellmuth), T.J. Cloutier, Josh Arieh, Erick Lindgren, Joe Sebok, Barry Greenstein, and Phil Ivey.  Not playing are Howard Lederer, Jesus Ferguson, Annie Duke, Phil Gordon (must be presidential campaign fund-raising), and Michael Gracz.

P10_jpg_1:: Chops interviewed Mark Seif last week.  Seif, a proud father of a two-week-old, shared his thoughts on the PPT, poker legalization, and two new movies he's in, among other topics. Look for the interview later this week.

:: We may or may not reference some hot girls for absolutely no reason other than to include said hot girl's photo on the site.  For example, in this very sentence, we may write that we have absolutely no idea if My Name is Earl babe Jamie Presley is really a big poker fan or not, and then put her picture at right. 

:: Last week, we wrote about a Canadian poker blogger named Spektacular who dropped a press release telling the world that he has started the world's 514th poker blog (we were #297 or so). Spek's blog chronicles his growing of a bankroll from $10 to...who knows?  But it's growing.  Well, this week, a poker blogger with serious wicked chops will issue a challenge to Spek that will either wipe out his coffer or significantly add to it. Look for this one tomorrow...

:: We're working on a blogfile with Joe Speaker.  He just returned from the Playboy Mansion.  Pretty sure he won't have any stories to share on that experience...

:: Lastly, this week marks and or commemorates the one year anniversary of Wicked Chops Poker's launch. There is a decent chance that we will have something to say about the past year in some way or another or something.

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Friday Night Parting Shot: Lauren from Laguna Hills

While in the past we've signed off on Friday night with 'parting shots' from Jessica Alba or a few of our favorite Brazilians, Wicked Chops Poker has decided--in what may or may not become a weekly tradition--to begin featuring some of the "real" girls who have joined us over in MySpace land. Yes, there's that MySpace again, but hey, we're putting it to good use.

And while these girls may not be as famous as the ones who usually grace our pages and their pics aren't from some high-dollar, glossed-up photo shoot (in fact many are digital self-portraits taken from an arm length away), we still like them just the same, and just maybe, even a tad bit more.

Which brings us first to lovely Lauren of Laguna Hills, a 24-year-old poker newbie who was kind enough to let us share a few snapshots of her (and that's her friend Tracee with her). Lauren won us over when she told us she takes regular vacations to Las Vegas (stays at the Wynn) and has taken up poker recently. As she puts its, "I've kicked the asses of several guys on many occasions." Find out more about Lauren here, and we know it would make her happy if you checked out her brother's band, Beverly, while you're at it.


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What Would Jesus Raise?

FaithchipspokerOur favorite foreign language poker blog is handsdown Poquer-Red, a Spain-based outfit that regularly links to Wicked Chops Poker stories and we have absolutely no idea what they're saying.

Well, some of us do, since we grew up in Florida.

But anyway, it was at Poquer-Red today where we came across this little bit on poker chips topped with Divine inspiration and sold by a Christian merch company called Kerusso.

Since we're scared of lightning strikes and plagues, we have no commentary on these "Faith Chips," but find out what Poquer-Red had to say, in Spanish of course, over at their blog or read our very broken and incorrect English translation, courtesy of freetranslation.com, after the jump.

Continue reading "What Would Jesus Raise?" »

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Breaking News: Man Starts Poker Blog

In an otherwise slow poker news day, one riveting story on the wire has taken the poker world by storm (boy do we hate that phrase). It's a simple tale about one man, a blog and how he has gone from rags to riches, or to about 800 bucks, to be exact.

SpektacularHis name says it all, Spektacular, and his press release is nothing but.

OK, it's Friday and we're tired of being sarcastic.

File this one under "You got to be kidding me," some PokerStars player has issued a frickin' press release to announce that he's started a blog that, get this, will chronicle his online poker playing exploits.

Brilliant idea. Absolutely brilliant (sarcasm tank now completely on empty).

And while we hate ourselves for perpetuating this guy's press release (which is published in its entirety after the jump), we hope it humors you on this Friday. It humored us, and made us cry.

And if you see this kid on PokerStars (that there above is his avatar) anytime soon, please kick him in the virtual nuts for us.

Who knows, maybe he'll blog about it.

Continue reading "Breaking News: Man Starts Poker Blog" »

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First Ever WPT-branded Poker Room Opens

Electra_1A famous hot chick, a poker pro or two and a red carpet. It's almost a cliché these days when launching a new poker room, product or gaming site.

OK, it is a cliché.

But it's one poker cliché I don't think anyone is complaining about.

And to no surprise it's exactly how it went down at the Foxwoods Resort Casino yesterday when the world's largest casino opened the first ever WPT-branded poker room and on hand to deal the ceremonial first hand was Dave Navarro's soon-to-be-ex, Carmen Electra (if the tab's are to be believed and when are they ever wrong? Seriously. They're never wrong.). Also present was poker pro/WPT co-host Mike Sexton along with a room full of people drinking $3,000 martinis that were likely billed as WPTinis (if they weren't, call us for your next event). "Celebs" (which will remain in quotes until we see the guest list) and VIPs (that's a $2 word) played a $25,000 winner-take-all tournament in the expanded, newly designed 114 table poker room, appropriately named the "WPT Poker Room at Foxwoods."

Steve Lipscomb, Founder and CEO of WPT Enterprises, Inc. had the following to say about the WPT branding of a poker room:

“This is the point when our brand truly moves into the casino in a major way. We’ve licensed our name to slot machines and gaming tables, and this is the next significant step—the evolution of the WPT brand at the casino level. Poker players will experience the WPT excitement first hand in an environment that evokes the cool, classy, charismatic character of our show. We applaud our partners at Foxwoods for continuing to expand the benefits of our mutual relationship.”

Did anyone just read that quote? I'm guessing not.

There's a pic of Carmen Electra with this post in case you missed it.

Oh, in semi-related news, Dave Navarro added us as his MySpace friend. We just got in under his 72,000th friend mark. Talk about VIP.

UPDATE: If you care, and you don't, but we got word that the $3,000 martinis were that pricey because each came with a pair of custom-made blue sapphire and diamond earrings.

You don't care right?

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Party On: PartyGaming Names New CEO

The search for a new CEO to replace the recently departed Richard Segal is over.  PartyGaming (PRTY.L) has named Mitch Garber its new head honcho.

Garber, who was previously with online payment firm FireOne, apparently has no issue with what was ultimately Segal's sticking point: moving to Gibraltar.

Maybe that's because Garber is from Canada.   

SavannaShares of PartyGaming were up oh so slightly today, gaining 0.78%. 

In totally unrelated news, pornstar Savanna Samson has just launched her own wine, and apparently, it tastes slightly better than she does. 

The wine, Sogno Uno, is a 2004 vintage that has just received a 90 to 91 rating from noted wine guru Robert Parker.  The label has Samson, pictured at right, in a see-through gown.  Samson says the wine "really represents who I am." 

After hearing that, noted wine guru Robert Parker immediately got tested for herpes, hepatitis-B, and the clap. 

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Breaking News: Phil Hellmuth Is New Celebrity Poker Showdown Host

Phil_homeIt has been just announced that nine-time World Series of Poker winner and FORMER World Champion Phil Hellmuth will be the new host on the upcoming season of BRAVO's "Celebrity Poker Showdown," to be held for the first time in New Orleans and which will benefit victims of Hurricane Katrina.

In a press statement released today, Frances Berwick, Senior VP of Programming and Production for Bravo, said:

"In Phil Hellmuth we have found an engaging, proven and renowned poker champion who we are confident will complement Dave Foley's comedic commentary and provide the insight our viewers rely on."

More on this plus our commentary to come soon. For now, read the entire press release after the jump, or eyeball what Hellmuth told our friends at ESPN's Poker Club about the new deal.

Continue reading "Breaking News: Phil Hellmuth Is New Celebrity Poker Showdown Host" »

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Thanks for the Add: Wicked Chops Poker on MySpace


Somewhere between Phil Gordon's handsome mug and Borat Sagdiyev of Kazakhstan, and in the midst of thousands upon thousands of gorgeous women who, if you are married, never existed until you were, lies Wicked Chops Poker's MySpace page.

EricamyspaceTiffanymyspaceA humble web abode complete with some of your favorite players, a few wicked chops regulars, a couple celeb types, a handful of frauds posing as poker pros and a harem of hot chicks who bare their souls, musicals tastes and pretty much everything else, the Wicked Chops Poker MySpace page exists for no good reason whatsoever; well, except to share with you every now and then a beautiful girl who enjoys long walks on the beach, breakfast in bed and stuff like sticking her tongue out at you (like Erica from California) or jamming it in another girl's mouth (thank you Tiffany from Hawaii).

Oh, and yes, we'll talk poker too.

So if you're already on MySpace, please drop on by. And yes, thanks in advance for the add.

If you're not on MySpace. Don't be such a lame, productive prude. Sign up today.

Or tomorrow sometime.

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PPA Steps Up Fight to Keep Online Poker Legal,
But Misses On Some Critical Points

The Poker Player's Alliance (PPA) is cranking up its vocal chords to make sure the public hears its message about keeping online poker legal.

Legal_copyAs we've detailed, recent legislation has been introduced by Sen. Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Rep. Jim Leach (R-IA), Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), and Rep. Jo Ann Davis (R-VA) to color the gray area that is online gambling black, which will cost some big-time companies a lot of green (and provide the founders of Wicked Chops Poker, like Chops at right, with a windfall of newfound free-time).

The most concise and pointed of its efforts comes from the PPA's president, Michael Bolcerek, who wrote an op-ed in Jo Ann Davis' home paper outlining four key points why outlawing (so-called) "Internet" poker is wrong:

1) Banks will be deputized by the Justice Department, harming consumer's privacy.
2) One we like to call (as of now) the "hypocrisy issue." While Davis's and others' bills would outlaw certain forms of gambling (i.e. Internet poker), it keeps horse racing and state lotteries legal.
3) The bill requires Internet service providers remove or disable access to online sites that it deems a violation.
4) The Treasury Department, Justice Department, and FBI will be required to enforce the provisions of the bill, taking resources away from more valuable things things like, perhaps, national security.

While all points have some credence, the privacy and hypocrisy issues carry the most weight.  Point #3 just seems like an inevitable off-shoot from the legislation, and point #4, well, if the same resources that would monitor Internet gambling are sniffing out terrorists, then we're probably in more trouble than we realize.  Which reminds us, fuck Al-Qaeda. 

However, the PPA must weave the following into its argument to make it truly effective...

Continue reading "PPA Steps Up Fight to Keep Online Poker Legal,
But Misses On Some Critical Points" »

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Bodog Gets Off the Schnide, Finally Has New Frigin' Bodog Girl Already...

The only thing more slack lately than Bodog updating their calendar babe (Ayre having too much fun at the compound or something? Come on guys, our readers love this stuff...don't leave 'em hangin') has been the frequency of our posts.  Regardless, it appears both Wicked Chops Poker and Bodog are back on track.  Meet the March Bodog Babe, Elisa KingMore pics at the jump.


Continue reading "Bodog Gets Off the Schnide, Finally Has New Frigin' Bodog Girl Already..." »

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Response to St. Patty's Question of the Day

After meticulously researching the topic, our response to the user comment of: "...is the poker "fad" over?" goes as follows:


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22 Year-Old Mike Schneider Defeats Kenna James to Win PartyPoker.com Million V

Schneidercheque2 Mike Schneider, a 22 year-old student at the University of Minnesota studying journalism, took out 42 year-old pro Kenna James to bank the $1 mil top prize and the PartyPoker.com Million V crown.

Schneider, who had many of his buddies there supporting him, has supported his college education by playing poker online.  This is Schneider's second major tournament event, as he played a $2,500 buy-in limit hold'em tournament at the 2005 WSOP, finishing 30 out of the money. 

The rest of the final table results and pay-outs: 6) Devon Miller - $175,000, 5) Richard Joel (of Atlanta, GA) - $225,000, 4) Andrew Chitiea - $300,000, 3) Scott Buller - $500,000, 2) Kenna James - $700,000.

*Photo from the PartyPoker blog.

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Furlong or Black: Who Is Best Irish Poker Player Ever In the History of the World?

NoelfurlongWith St. Patty's Day right around the corner, and by "right around the corner" we mean "today," and with 2/3 of the Wicked Chops Poker founding team being half-Irish, it presents us all with an interesting question.  And that question is this:

"Who is the Greatest Irish Poker Player Ever in the History of the World?"

Surely and for good reason the Irish would like to claim Dan Harrington as their own, since his cuz PadraigAblack is in the upper-echelon of Irish pro golfers right now.  But Action Dan is American-born.  And for the purposes of this article, we're focusing on Irish-born-and-bred poker pros.

So this really only leaves us with two options for Greatest Irish Poker Player Ever in the History of the World: 1) 1999 WSOP ME champion Noel Furlong, and 2) 2005 WSOP final table-ist Andy Black.

It's a tough, tough call.  Let's consider the resumes...

Continue reading "Furlong or Black: Who Is Best Irish Poker Player Ever In the History of the World?" »

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St. Patty's Question of the Day

GreenbeerFor those of you not already piss drunk off green beer or knee-deep sorting out your NCAA brackets, here's a comment posted on Wicked Chops Poker last night.  Please weigh in if you have an opinion...we will respond once we sober up and sort out our brackets.

Comment: I'd like to offer a suggestion...is the poker "fad" over?

Not the fact that hundreds of thousands of people (and the demo itself is a huge topic of discussion) play poker online or in person, and that number is growing.....just that the 21st century 'culture' of poker...does anyone give a shit about "pro earnings" or "pro tournaments"? It's not like the pro tennis or pro golf tour by any stretch.....

What people care about are the 20-some-odd episodes of the WSOP...other than that, I really question what 'relavance' poker has at this point. I truly believe the fascination with ESPN, etc. and the over-the-top coverage with other cable networks is over.

Anyone have a different viewpoint?

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The TOKE: WPT Sued, Diet Pepsi Shrewd, and Al Ardebili Interviewed

Decept:: Did WPT steal Jonathan Waessil's pot?  So...this whole putting-poker-on-TV thing was actually all Jonathan Waessil's idea?  Well, according to Jonathan Waessil, it was.  Waessil has sued the WPT claiming its CEO, Steve Lipscomb, stole the idea from him after a discussion the pair had about 10 years ago at the Hollywood Park Casino.  Never mind that poker had already been on TV (albeit very late night, with ESPN's scary looking old WSOP telecasts), and that the pocket cam, the poker invention that made poker's re-invention as a mainstream sport that was invented by Transformers inventor Henry Orenstein, had not been invented yet.  But on the very oft-chance these claims are true, would that make Lipscomb a Decepticon?  And with this all in mind, Chops is considering a lawsuit against all college kids who use the phrase "Golden Chair" at parties to save their seat when getting up to get another beer, as Chops steadfastly believes he coined the term at least a full year before anyone else started using it.  Online Poker News

Tvads_3c:: Diet Pepsi Digs Poker.  Diet Pepsi is the latest major brand to throw some advertising dollars towards some pro's coffers.  In a new ad, a skilled can of the diet beverage goes heads-up against Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, and Scotty Nguyen.  No word yet if Hellmuth calls the little can a moron or idiot yet, but we're sure it hit some lucky cards on him.  All In Magazine

:: Dr. Pauly interviews Al Ardebili.  WPT Borgata Open winner Al Ardebili was interviewed by Dr. Pauly.  He discusses a major hand where he called a Steve Dannenmann bluff, as well as some common mistakes he sees beginners making.  Tao of Poker

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Review: Poker Pages Launches "The Real Deal"

Therealdeal_1 Poker Pages has launched a monthly TV show (broadcast over the so-called "Internet" on Poker Pages, which makes us question if it's technically a "TV" show, but if it is, than sheeet, it makes us want to declare Wicked Chops Poker now as a full-fledged "magazine," which what the hell why not let's go for it, we're a magazine now, so take THAT poker bloggers everywhere) called The Real Deal.

Hopefully the show proves to be more successful than other "real deals," such as John Kerry's failed 2004 presidential campaign or the CDC's failed campaign to curtail smoking among the youth.  The good news for Poker Pages though is that John Kerry's "The Real Deal" is not even close to being the most failed presidential campaign slogan of all-time, which we'll give to Henry Clay's 1844 classic, "Who is James K. Polk?"  Yeah, that worked.  Can you say a little thing called, "Manifest Destiny," Mr. Clay?  Didn't think so.

In the first episode of this "TV" program, you'll get to see the (interestingly chosen) host Mark Adams...try and sell you a time-share in Florida (seriously, this guy has "infomercial" written all over him)...or you'll see him interview Jason Alexander, WPT Pres & CEO Steve Lipscomb, Alan Geohring, and gambling legend Bob Stupak, among others.  There may or may not be another host of the show (he receives equi-billing in the graphic at right, although is difficult to actually find in this episode) named Landon Moore. 

DunkOf course, if the show blows up, it may lead to an interesting dilemma, and that is: Who will become the "Brian Dunkleman" of The Real Deal and bolt, effectively ruining his career?  Will it be Moore or Adams?  The smart money would probably go on Moore, given his lack of actual face-time in the first show, but maybe someone out there can set a line for us on this one.  The graphic at right even has an American Idol-esque glow to it, doesn't it?  Clearly, Adams is the Seacrest to Moore's Dunkleman.  Clearly.

Anyway, upon watching the first episode, you do get some decent info and recaps of tournaments, personalities, and happenings.  But much like John Kerry, The Real Deal presents itself in more of a straight-up informational format than a compelling, entertaining, unique content alternative...but there's always room to grow. 

Watch the first episode of The Real Deal on Poker Pages.

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Bodog Bites Back: Billionaire Ayre Wants Raid Investigated

Did the Costa Rican Government over-play its hand against Bodog?

Calvin Ayre thinks so.

Gallery_fullsize_09The Billionaire Bodog founder wants the government of Costa Rica to, "launch an investigation into the violation of his constitutional rights as well as the theft, damage, loss of filming assets and damage to his reputation," according to A.M. Costa Rica.

Allegedly, some ill communication coming from the press, falsifications on the so-called "Internet," and other misunderstandings were the basis for the raid.  Ayre says that, "...the investigation was of the wrong person, the wrong location and the wrong act."  The police and immigration officers on the scene (totaling up to 100) also, allegedly, feasted on food at the compound and in a bizarre yet completely understandable twist (because of evidence A & B at right, for example), three police officers got butt-naked and took a swim in the estate pool. 

Of course, like Sammy "Killer" Reid, Ayre has a horseshoe up his butt.  And the raid will likely make great TV and raise interest in Ayre's soon-to-be-aired reality show.  Like Rod Stewart once said, "Some guys have all the luck."

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The Blogfiles Returns With:: Bill Rini


“I'm not sure you can call ‘Rush Rush’ the best song about poker but it's certainly up there.  It's definitely the one people think about when they think Paula Abdul and poker.” – Bill Rini

After a brief hiatus, Wicked Chops Poker is, in PR parlance, “pleased and excited” to bring back our Blogfile feature.  To kick it off again, we’re, uh, pleased and excited to showcase the always entertaining and insightful Bill Rini.  Enjoy.

WCP: Soooo...you're pretty new to the so-called "Internet" thing, aren't you?

BR: I guess you can say I've been around the block a few times.

WCP:  Billrini.com had a few iterations before finding its groove as a poker blog…what’d you do with the site before focusing on poker? 

BR:  It was mostly just a place for me to experiment around with software until about 2001 when a friend and I decided to actually do something with it.  We were sitting around over a few beers laughing about some of the absurd boo-hoo stories the press was writing about the dotcom bubble bursting and we decided that there was a need to offer a more balanced view.  The result was RINI.org (rini.org and billrini.com both go to the same site today) which stood for the Real Internet News Initiative.  Once the press figured out that the sky wasn't falling, I no longer had anything fun to write about so I was in search of a new theme.

WCP:  Once billrini.com made the leap into pokerblogdom, you uncovered one of the greatest mysteries since Geraldo unlocked Al Capone's vault…and that was the secret poker-themed lyrics to Paula Abdul's opus "Rush Rush." Do you consider “Rush Rush” to be the greatest song ever about poker?  If not, what is? My vote goes to “A Boy Named Sue” (loose poker tie-in, sure, but Sue's daddy was playing a game of Stud in it).

Continue reading "The Blogfiles Returns With:: Bill Rini" »

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Ayre Estate Raided

AyrebillionaireBillionaire Bodog founder Calvin Ayre's Costa Rican estate has been raided.

Said Ayre, "They came in like they were raiding Al Capone's lair."

According to a Reuters report, a television company was filming a party at Ayre's mansion as part of a celebrity poker tournament, but police thought unlicensed gambling was taking place there.

Ayre, currently featured in Forbes Magazine, said no one was arrested, and the party went on.  However, police did seize a laptop computer and some "files containing organizational material for the shoot in Friday's raid," said Peter Karroll, head of bodog.com's entertainment division.

Read Ayre's full statement here.

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Phil Gordon To Leave Celebrity Poker Showdown

The rumors were true. All In magazine reports that Phil Gordon is officially leaving Celebrity Poker Showdown

The only question left now is, "What poker show will we continue not watching?"

Gordon1_1Actually, the real question is, "Who will replace the affable co-host?"

Word on the street (and by "street", we mean "All In" magazine) is that Phil Hellmuth could be "filling" in for Gordon. 

Tiltboy Gordon said his reasons for leaving the show included the amount of time and energy required for him to run for President of the United States of America in 2008*.  He also suggested that any of the writers for Wicked Chops Poker would make a fantastic replacement for him on Celebrity Poker Showdown**.  That way, as he says, "They can deal with idiots like Scott Stapp every week, cause I'm freaking over it."

*Completely false. / **Also false. / ***Quote made up but likely true anyway.

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19 Year-Old UGA Freshman Jeff Williams Wins EPT Grand Final

JeffwinnerJeff Williams, a 19 year-old freshman from the University of Georgia, has won the EPT Grand Final at Monte Carlo.

For the win, Jeff banks €900,000--easily enough beer money for the next for years of college--or to make him very appealing to any of the unbelievably attractive sorority girls on campus. 

So not only does the kid kind of look like Bobby Baldwin, but he's got the wicked poker chops of the guy, and is starting to get paid like him too.  Nice work.

Arshad Hussain, no relation to Saddam, because their last names are spelled differently and all, came in second.  Marcel Luske finished seventh.

For a live blogging breakdown, check out the Poker Stars blog.

*Photo from Poker Stars blog.

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UGA Freshman Lone American at EPT's Grand Final

Ept_logo_1Jeff Williams, a freshman at Chops' alma mater UGA, is the lone American remaining at the European Poker Tour's Grand Final tournament in Monte Carlo.

The 19 year-old from Dunwoody, GA has outlasted over 300 players to make the final eight.  Williams qualified on Poker Stars (his tag is yellowsub86) and is the third largest stack.

Right behind him is the Flying Dutchman, Marcel Luske.  Leading them all is a Frenchman, Thierry Cazals. 

Check out the Poker Stars blog for full details of the final table and live updates.

Continue reading "UGA Freshman Lone American at EPT's Grand Final" »

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The TOKE: Earn a WSOP Seat for $2, People Love to Gamble, + Somebody Won Another WSOPC Event

Tiff1_1 :: For the cost of a Big Mac, you can qualify for the WSOP.  Excellent piece in Card Player detailing online WSOP qualifying opportunities.  You can earn a chance to win the poker lottery against 8,000 other players for as little as $1.10 - $2.00.  If you're even a bit discouraged on your chances of getting in the money against such a huge field though, don't be.  Remember, Tiffany Williamson finished 15th last year.  Card Player

:: The people have spoken...and they want Internet gambling.  Some little newspaper called the Wallstreet Journal ran a poll asking its readers if Congress should ban some little thing called Internet gambling. 83% of the resondents said, "No, Congress should not ban Internet gambling. Re-load!" Or they just said, "No." People love to gamble.  It's one of the few redeeming qualities of the human race.  Card Squad

:: If a WSOP Circuit Event falls in the woods and nobody hears it, did it really happen? More a testament to the glut of major tournaments going on right now as opposed to the popularity of poker, (a now relatively paltry) 109 rounders pushed stacks around for the 2006 WSOP Circuit - Harrah's San Diego event. It was won by Darrell Dicken. He banked $372,780. Kathy Liebert finished third. Andy Bloch...he finished eighth. Card Player.

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Quick Hits On WPT Season 4 Premiere

As discussed yesterday, the fourth season of the WPT aired last night, with Gavin Smith taking the $1+ million prize against 2006 National Heads-Up champ Ted Forrest.  Some quick hits on the show:

Gavinsmith1 :: If Kido Pham's totally pre-conceived, pre-meditated, rehearsed, sunglassed shtick of, "Can you see me now?" becomes a poker table catch-phrase, then shame on you all.  Shame--on--you--all. 

:: Does a clearly pregnant Gavin Smith's winning of a WPT event trump Annie Duke's 8-months-pregnant WSOP ME top 10 finish in the "Greatest Feats Accomplished in Poker While Pregnant" pantheon?

:: While she'd still be hotter than 99% of the girls in any room and did an admirable job, Courtney Friel is no Shana Hiatt.  It's not her fault.  These things never work out.  It's like when that one blond girl on Three's Company replaced that other blond girl.  It's just never the same.

* Gavin Smith photo from Card Player.

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Watch Ted Forrest Play Poker Tonight

92You can catch 2006 NBC Heads-Up Poker Champion Ted Forrest in action tonight as the World Poker Tour kicks off its fourth season with the Mirage Poker Showdown. Held this past May, this WPT televised final table showcases Forrest battling it out with Thang "Kido" Pham, Canuck Gavin Smith, Raleigh's Christopher Bell, Texan Mark Ellerbe and New Yorker Gene Todd. 317 players entered this event and more than $3,000,000 was on the line, with a $1,128,278 payday to first.

By the way, congrats to the WPT for entering its quad year. Impressive. If you asked me a few years ago what's the likelihood they'd enter a 4th season, I would have told you it's about as likely as NASCAR becoming a mainstream sport or, better yet, about as likely as some no-name amateur with the impossible moniker of Moneymaker winning the World Series of Poker, only to end up as some "celebrity" hawking videogames and books and headlining NASCAR-themed charity poker tournaments.

Speaking of this so-called NASCAR sport, if you haven't checked out the trailer for Will Ferrell's upcoming movie "Talledega Nights: the Ballad of Ricky Bobby" get to it now.

And if you want to get warmed up for tonight's WPT, get, uh, warmed up with video of WPT hostess Courtney Friel frollicking on top of a poker table. She's pretty hot, even when she's talking.


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Huck Seed Doesn't Win Heads Up Championship

:: snake

Huckseed_1For various reasons, including, but not limited to, he has some wicked heads-up chops and the man is due, it was my hope and prediction that Huck Seed would take the title in this year's NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship.

But he didn't.

That honor goes to Ted Forrest, one of the best all-around poker players in the world, dominating the game of stud for years and lately showing he's a major force to be reckoned with at the NLHE table, whether 2-handed or 10-handed. Forrest defeated Chris "Walk on Water" Ferguson in a best of three heads-up contest, in which Forrest overcame a first match loss to win the two deciding matches for the championship. Ferguson, who many, including us, regard as the best heads-up player in the world, clearly lived up to his hype and ability by once again making it to the final match in this 64-player tournament in which you have to beat heads-up 5 of the world's top players over 3 days just to sit there at the end and play for the $500,000 cash and title.

And although Huck, the '96 WSOP main event champ and a 9th place finisher in the heads-up tourney last year, didn't win, I have to say I wasn't far off on my prediction.

Continue reading "Huck Seed Doesn't Win Heads Up Championship" »

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Forrest Beats Ferguson for Heads-Up Title

HeadsupTed Forrest has won the National Heads-Up Championship.

Forrest bested Chris "Jesus" Ferguson for the title.  For the win, Forrest banks $500,000. 

This marks the second year Ferguson finished second.  Chris cashes $250,000 as the runner-up.

To reach the finals, Forrest beat Sean Sheikhan in the semis.  Ferguson defeated Huck Seed in his semifinal match.

The win pushes Forrest's career tournament earnings to over $3 million.

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The TOKE: ESPN Edition

Stacyk14_2:: Heads up misses out.  While the field at the National Heads-Up Championship is definitely stellar (as is the Elite 8 and Final 4), some very deserving talents were left out of the competition when brackets were drawn on Selection Saturday, like Steve Dannenmann, Michael Gracz, and Stacy Keibler's rear-end. ESPN Poker Club

:: The Poker Guy?  In what will surely help further drain many a Corporate American's productivity, Bill "The Sports Guy" Simmons will be playing in and chronicling his WSOP experience this year.  ESPN Poker Club

:: Do Arena League teams throw temper tantrums when they lose games or something?  Phil Hellmuth is doing some promo spots for the Arena Football League with Mike Ditka.  Don't really have anything to add to that...  ESPN Poker Club

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Chops Goes All In, Gets Married

SavingchoppperWicked Chops Poker co-founder, Chops, folded his bachelorhood this past weekend and got hitched in Hawaii.

While Snake and Sammy “Killer” Reid made a last ditch attempt to keep Chops from pushing his stack into the nuptials pot (wait, that didn’t come out right), Chops and his bride, Lady Chops, went “all-in” by trading vows Saturday night.

By going heads-up with Lady Chops, Chops is officially pot committed to this relationship.  Said Chops, “Yeah, wow.  I was just splashing the pot and next thing I know, I’m involved in the biggest hand of my life.  So goes it with poker…I mean marriage.  Same difference.”

Zapruder-esque granular cell phone pics of the nups at the jump.

Continue reading "Chops Goes All In, Gets Married" »

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The British Blogs Are Coming

Coverfebruary2006All In magazine has launched one of those so-called "websites" to accompany its print edition, and on this "website" they feature a so-called "blog monitor" (think Blogs On Poker) that lists about 200 or so poker blogs and regularly posts headlines and snippets from these blogs including yours truly. In announcing said "website" in a press release, Eric Raskin, managing editor of All In, had the following to say:

"There are some great blogs out there. They include Pokerati, Guinness and Poker, Tao of Poker, Bill Rini, Wicked Chops Poker and Absinthe's Troubles."

Now, I haven't heard of any of these other blogs before and I'm not sure any are the real deal. I mean "Guinness and Poker"? Are you kidding me? How could a poker blog named "Guinness and Poker" ever last long in the blogosphere? And "Tao of Poker"? I've heard of the "Tao of Pooh" but "Tao of Poker"? I just went to that site and all I saw was a big photo of Jessica Alba at the Oscars. Seriously man, what do hot chicks have to do with a poker blog?

Ok, kidding aside, we do appreciate the mention and definitely encourage all to visit the above poker blogs, some of the best around. Moving on to the point of this post though, I came across an entry over at Howard Swains' blog referencing the All In announcement and encouraging Raskin to "look over the Atlantic as well, where several British players and observers give poker a prominent place in the blogosphere."

Swains, an amateur poker player out of London who writes great articles on poker for The Times, is certainly right, and we encourage you to follow his suggestion and regularly check out what player/bloggers are saying across the pond.

The following are some of the blogs Swains recommends:

Continue reading "The British Blogs Are Coming" »

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Down to Elite 8 at Heads-Up Championship

McmanusallinAfter two days, the field of 64 is down to the elite eight (listed after the jump), and while there have been some surprises along the way, no one should be surprised that these particular eight are still battling it out for the $500,000 cash and the coveted title. They are indeed some of the best practitioners and students of the game, with two WSOP main event champs represented and 20 total WSOP bracelets won between the final eight. Indeed all players remaining have found themselves at a final table at the WSOP, and all but two own at least one WSOP gold bracelet (also, it's worth noting that all but one are generally likeable players you wouldn't mind seeing with the title).

The quarterfinals gets underway at 11am in the new Caesar's tournament room. Stay up on the action over at CardPlayer.com and be sure to check out the player interviews from the tournament over at All In magazine's new website (btw, those 8 you see in the photo above may or may not be the final 8, so read on below). The All In interview with Jim McManus is particularly interesting as he comments on the difficulties of playing a televised tournament where production stops play and momentum is often stalled. We expect to hear more players expressing grief about this, even though it's part of the game now, and will be for some time. Anyone at the 2005 WSOP saw how the flow of the game is repeatedly halted with the call for cameras to come over to the table, and no doubt it's frustrating in a game where the clock is always running and the blinds increasing.

For a list of the Elite Eight, what the match-ups look like in the Quarterfinals and how each player got to this point, please read on after the jump . . .

Continue reading "Down to Elite 8 at Heads-Up Championship" »

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NBC Heads-Up Championship Under Way


The 2nd Annual NBC National Heads Up Poker Championship got underway at Caesars on Saturday and will draw to a close Monday, March 6. Click on the above image to get a closer look at some of the epic round 1 pairings as well as brackets that are guaranteeing this to be a first-rate championship. Kudos by the way to 21-year-old Josh Lochner of Ft. Lauderdale who won the NBC Heads-Up online tourney to earn a seat among the world's best poker players. For those who can't wait until the 6 episodes air on NBC, starting April 16 through May 21, head over to CardPlayer.com for live action updates. As we type, they are down to the Sweet 16.

For those who don't want any spoilers until it airs on TV, well, then we won't tell you that Phil Hellmuth, the defending champ...

Continue reading "NBC Heads-Up Championship Under Way" »

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Another Le Makes a "Nam" for Himself

NamlechamppicOkay. So the title for this post was just going to be "Tuan's Cuz Takes Title at Bay 101," as I'm more of a fan of alliterative headlines than cheesy ones that play off player's names.

But then my WCP cohort Chops, who's in Hawaii right now, where he is either getting married this weekend or doing research for his upcoming role in the Magnum P.I. remake, texted me and told me to check out the lame headline over at CardPlayer.com, that sums up Nam Le's WPT win as follows:

"Nam Le Makes a Name for Himself at the Bay 101 Shooting Star"

And so the cheesy headlines playing off player's names continues, and no doubt we'll contribute our share of similar headlines over the years to come, including the one above.

So yes, Nam Le, the cousin of Tuan Le, the insanely fearless player who makes Gus Hansen look like Dan Harrington and Donald "The Bank Owns Me" Trump look like a poor fool with a combover (considering Le has cashed close to $4.5 million in the last 3 years), is the latest WPT champion after taking the top prize at the Bay 101 Shooting Star in San Jose, California. Nam outlasted more than 500 players and a final table that included David "Remember Me' Williams, Chad "the C-list actor/A-list poker player" Brown and French pro and LAPC Day 2 chipleader/LAPC Day 3 bubble boy Fabrice Soulier.

The final day started with Nam Le and local fave Ravi "Ravioli"* Udayakumar at the top of the chip counts and that's how it ended as the other four flamed out and Nam and Ravi found themselves heads up for the Bay 101 title and the $1,172,800 cash. Ravi, who hails from right there in San Jose, had a considerable edge at first with more than a 2-to-1 advantage ($3,625,000 to Le's $1,555,000), but Le turned the table on him quickly winning a $2.2 million dollar pot in which he trapped, then punished Ravi after flopping a jack high straight. And no more than 10 minutes after heads up started, Le was the victor and Ravi settled for second and a $629,500 takeaway.

This was Nam's biggest win to date and his first main event crown. Most recently, Le won the $1,500 NLHE event at the Bellagio Festa Al Lago IV ($147,925), and his best WPT finish was in 2004 when he placed 6th in the Five-Diamond World Poker Classic ($152,468).

Here's what the payouts looked like for the TV final table:

1. Nam Le - $1,172,800
2. Ravi Udayakumar - $629,500
3. Danny Smith - $340,000
4. David Williams - $280,000
5. Fabrice Soulier - $240,000
6. Chad Brown - $200,000

Oh, and add $5,000 to Nam Le's earnings as he was also the guy who knocked out David Williams, who was one of the 50 "star" players in the event with a 5 G price tag on his stack.

* 3rd grade humor there.

(Photo of Nam Le courtesy of the World Poker Tour. Check out their new live tournament updates online.)

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Courtney Friel Video at Maxim Online


The WPT's Courtney Friel may or may not be as hot as Shana Hiatt but she certainly is hot and may be hotter although she isn't as girl next door as Shana but the girl who lived next door to me growing up wasn't so hot so I'm not one to judge these kind of things except to tell you that Courtney Friel is not the girl next door, is still smoking hot and looks really good when lying on a poker table in next to nothing like she did during the Wicked Chops Poker game the other night and ironically enough she did the same for our friends over at Maxim, except they were smart enough to videotape it all and share with the world.

Go view. And say hi to Stacy Keibler, Campus Cuties and girls hotter than the one you're with while you're there.

WARNING: for some reason Courtney is talking the whole time during the photo shoot. Not sure why but it's kind of distracting.

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Girls on the Rail at 2008 WSOP


    Our photog at the 2008 WSOP is having a hard time focusing his lens on the pros at the table. We like him for that. Check out girls on the rail here.

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