WPT LEGENDS OF POKER (TV)

August 23-29 | The Bicycle Casino | Bell Gardens, California
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Like Riding a Bike with Jess and BJ

Level 1: 50-100, ante

 On this episode of the Jess and BJ Show, Jessica Welman and BJ Nemeth realize they forgot a few details, settle up and bet the Bookie's new line on total number of players in the field, recap Day 1A of the Legends of Poker, and answer the question, "What is your favorite saying?"

 

Sorted In: Jess and BJ Show, Jessica Welman, BJ Nemeth, Featured Blog, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:03 AM, 08/26/11

WPT Legends of Poker, Day 1a Recap

Level 1: 50-100, ante

By BJ Nemeth


The inaugural U.S. tournament for Season X of the World Poker Tour began on Thursday at the Bicycle Casino. It was the WPT Legends of Poker, one of the few tournaments that has been on the WPT schedule since the beginning.

Here's a look back at some of the highlights from Day 1a:


0126 Pliska Heller Sexton VanPatten

There was a press conference to kick off the tenth season of the World Poker Tour, which focused on some changes for this season while looking back at the decade of distinguished WPT history.

One of the new things you'll see this season is the Royal Flush Girls Social Bar, where the press conference was held. (More info on that and some of the other changes in the photos below.)

From left to right: WPT President Adam Pliska, WPT CEO Steve Heller, and TV commentators Mike Sexton and Vince Van Patten.


0169 RFG Melissa

The Royal Flush Girls are brand ambassadors who appear at WPT tournaments and on the TV show. Two new women have joined their ranks for Season X -- Melissa Fisher (pictured above) and Mica Javier.


0105 WPT Champions Cup

Another major change to the World Poker Tour is the creation of the WPT Champions' Cup, modeled after the concept of the NHL's Stanley Cup. The Champions' Cup will travel with the World Poker Tour and be on display for fans and players, and every player who wins a WPT title gets their name added to the base of the cup on a small plaque.

The WPT winners from the first nine seasons have already had their names added to the cup, with room for at least a few more seasons of champions. While the Champions' Cup stays with the tour, every WPT winner going forward will receive a smaller version of the Cup to keep as a trophy.


0462 Legends Day 1a

The tournament room at the Bicycle Casino quickly filled up as Day 1a got underway. The buy in was $3,500 + $200, and it is the first tournament in WPT history to feature a re-entry format. Any players who were eliminated on Day 1a have the option of re-registering on Day 1b for a second try.

The Day 1a field attracted 322 players, with 141 surviving to Day 2. A larger field is expected for Day 1b.


0396 Royal Flush Girls

One of the most visible changes for Season X is the addition of the Royal Flush Girls Social Bar, which will be in the tournament area from Day 1 all the way to the televised final table. The Social Bar provides an area for players to relax, play video games, view updated chip counts and Twitter feeds, and socialize with the Royal Flush Girls.

One thing the Social Bar will not be providing is alcohol. For that, you'll need to find a cocktail waitress from the casino.


0956 Tony Dunst

Tony Dunst has returned for Season X to continue his role as the hand analyst for the TV show's "Raw Deal" segment. Dunst received high praise for his work from the WPT executives during the press conference.


0783 Amit Makhija

Amit Makhija shares his thoughts with WPT producer Mandy Glogow after winning a big hand that extended into the dinner break.


0548 ClubWPT Troy Syrjanen

Troy Syrjanen won his entry into the tournament on ClubWPT.com, the World Poker Tour's legal-in-the-United States online poker site. For about $20 a month, players compete in freeroll tournaments with cash and prizes up to and including seats in actual World Poker Tour events.

For more information, check out ClubWPT.com.

For his part, Syrjanen is off to a good start, surviving to Day 2 with 39,800 in chips.


0592 Live at the Bike Table

One of the biggest changes for Season X is live-streaming of the action at televised WPT final tables -- with hole cards. Hard-core fans will no longer have to wait a few months for the episodes to appear on TV to be able to watch the action on a short (about 30 minutes) delay.

At the Bicycle Casino, the live-streaming is going a step further. Since the Bike has facilities set up for their popular "Live at the Bike" webcast, they will be live-streaming random tables from the tournament every day before the final table -- with hole cards.

This featured table includes Nicolas Levi (seat 2), Steven Kelly (seat 3), David Diaz (seat 5), Nam Le (seat 7), and Derek Gregory (seat 8). The featured table rotates during the day so no group of players receives too much exposure to the hole-card cams.


0635 Phil Hellmuth

Phil Hellmuth showed up late, as is his tradition, but he didn't last long, busting out shortly after the dinner break. And the pink hat? It was part of a prop bet that Hellmuth lost against Tom Dwan when they visited U.S. military troops in the Middle East this past spring. The hat has been signed by a Sergeant who was serving in Kuwait.



0962 Chipleader Matt Berkey

Matt Berkey was already battling for the chip lead late in the day when he got moved to a new table, and, in the course of six hands, grew his stack from 170,000 to 262,000. That distanced Berkey from the rest of the field, making him the clear chipleader.

Berkey kept the momentum until the end of the day, finishing at the top of the leader board with 248,500.


Here's a look at the top five chip counts:

1. Matt Berkey - 248,500
2. Soi Nguyen - 215,200
3. Cody Slaubaugh - 188,200
4. Tyler Cornell - 179,200
5. Ken Lawson - 174,100

Day 1b begins Friday at 1:00 pm PT, featuring a fresh batch of players mixed in with some of those who busted out on Day 1a and choose to take another shot.

Return to WPT.com for live coverage throughout the day.

Sorted In: Featured Blog, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
10:35 AM, 08/26/11

ClubWPT Player of the Day - Matt Berkey

Level 1: 50-100, ante

Sorted In: Featured Blog, ClubWPT, Jessica Welman, Matt Berkey, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
12:59 AM, 08/26/11

Chipleader Matt Berkey Has 262,000

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

0962 Chipleader Matt Berkey

Photo: Matt Berkey chats with Brent Hanks (left) moments before their table breaks.

When Matt Berkey was moved to the immediate left of his friend Brent Hanks, he was battling for the chip lead with about 170,000.

They were seated together for only six hands before the table broke, but in that time Berkey built his chip stack up to 262,000 -- the clear chipleader in this field.

Sorted In: Matt Berkey, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
12:08 AM, 08/26/11

David Baker on Re-entry Strategy

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

Sorted In: Jessica Welman, David Baker, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
12:01 AM, 08/26/11

Matt Berkey Eyes the Chip Lead

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

Matt Berkey min-raises to 1,600, a player in middle position calls, and David Baker raises to 5,600 on the button.  Berkey calls and the other player folds.

The flop comes Kclub5spade2club and Berkey checks.  Baker bets 7,000 and Berkey calls.  The turn brings the Jheart and Berkey checks a second time.  Baker bets 11,500 and Berkey calls.

The river is the 6diamond and both players check.  Berkey shows Kheart7heart for top pair and Baker taps the table before mucking his cards.

After the hand, Berkey appears to be hovering very close to the 200,000 mark.

Matt Berkey - 195,000
David Baker - 60,000 

Sorted In: Matt Berkey, David Baker, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:53 PM, 08/25/11

Ozzy Sheikh Busts a Player

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

With the board showing QheartJspade6heart5spade on the turn, the big blind moves all in for 15,500, and Ozzy Sheikh calls from late position with KspadeQspade (pair of queens, spade flush draw).

The big blind turns over Qdiamond9diamond for a pair of queens with a lower kicker. He'll need to catch a nine on the river to stay alive.

The river card is the 10club, and Sheikh wins the pot with his king kicker to eliminate the big blind.

Ozzy Sheikh  -  56,000

Sorted In: Ozzy Sheikh, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:49 PM, 08/25/11

Reigning Champ Andy Frankenberger Eliminated

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

It has been a rough day for Season IX Player of the Year and reigning Legends of Poker champion Andy Frankenberger.  He just busted during the last level of play when he flopped top two pair against Raymond Dolan's top set.

Luckily for Frankenberger, the new re-entry elemtn of the tournament means he will have another crack at defending his title tomorrow.  As he was leaving, Frankenberger told the WPT camera crews that he was slightly relieved to bust, as it meant he wouldn't be left facing a tough decision should he have ended the day with a short stack.

Raymond Dolan - 75,000
Andy Frankenberger - eliminated 

Sorted In: Raymond Dolan, Andy Frankenberger, Featured Blog, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:36 PM, 08/25/11

Level 9 Begins

Level 9: 400-800, 100 ante

The players return from break to begin Level 9, with increased blinds of 400-800 and a 100 ante. This will be the last level of the night. 

The tournament clock shows 177 players remaining from the starting field of 322, though anyone who busts today has the option of re-entering tomorrow on Day 1b. (It'll cost them another $3,700, of course.)

Sorted In: The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:18 PM, 08/25/11

Allen Kessler Eliminated -- But He'll Be Back

Level 8: 300-600, 75 ante

Allen Kessler is all in preflop with 9diamond9spade against another player's AdiamondKdiamond. Even though it's a coinflip situation, Kessler says, "I only win about 30% of these."

Sure enough, the board comes Jclub7heart6heart8spadeKspade, and Kessler's opponent spikes a king to win the pot. Allen Kessler is eliminated.

Kessler has already said that he'll be back tomorrow to register again on Day 1b. This is the first WPT event in history to feature a re-entry format.

Sorted In: Allen Kessler, The Bicycle Casino, Legends of Poker, Season X
11:04 PM, 08/25/11

 

Summary

Current Level:

Countdown to Day 1A

Players Remaining:

0 of 0

Time Remaining:

Blind Structure

Level Blinds Ante
1 50-100 0
2 75-150 0
3 75-150 25
4 100-200 25
5 150-300 50
6 200-400 50
7 250-500 75
8 300-600 75
9 400-800 100
10 500-1,000 100
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