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Poker News | World Poker News

Latest Poker After Dark Episodes on NBC December 29

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Months ago, it was announced that the fifth season of Poker After Dark would film its episodes in late October and early November for airing at a later date. Those dates have been released, and the much-anticipated new shows will begin airing on NBC on December 29, 2008.

There were 13 weeks worth of episodes taped this fall at the Golden Nugget Hotel & Casino, all with host Leeann Tweeden standing by for questions and comments from the players, and Ali Nejad with off-camera commentary. Until now, no player line-up had been announced, but now we know that some of the most famous pros - Doyle Brunson, Daniel Negreanu, Chris Ferguson, Howard Lederer, Phil Ivey, Erick Lindgren, and Phil Hellmuth - will again grace the tables. In addition, many new faces will make their inaugural appearances on the show, such as Orel Hershiser, Jason Alexander, Don Cheadle, John Phan, Kenny Tran, Max Pescatori, Dario Minieri, Ivan Demidov, Taylor Caby, and David Benefield.

According to the release, there will be seven weeks of cash games and six weeks of single-table $20,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournaments, which creates more of a balanced mix than in seasons past. Some of the new themed episodes will include:

The Magnificent Six - six of the most successful and recognizable pros in the business (Ferguson, Lederer, Brunson, Negreanu, Ivey, Hellmuth)

USA vs. Italy - three Italians and three Americans vie for national pride (Lindgren, Ferguson, and Lederer vs. Pescatori, Minieri, and Marco Traniello)

Celebrities vs. Mentors - three celebrity poker players take on the mentors that helped improve their game (Hershiser vs. Gavin Smith, Alexander vs. Barry Greenstein, Cheadle vs. Phil Gordon)

International Week - poker pros from various countries look to show that their country produces the best player (Brad Booth from Canada, David Benyamine from France, Allen Cunningham from the USA, John Juanda from Indonesia, Phan from Vietnam, Demidov from Russia)

Dream Match III - contest-winning amateur plays five of his favorite poker pros (Arnold Thimons, Phil Laak, Jennifer Tilly, Mike Matusow, Johnny Chan, Negreanu)

Sit-N-Talk - poker professionals who are known for and enjoy table banter (Antonio Esfandiari, Jennifer Harman, David Grey, Matusow, Jean-Robert Bellande, Vanessa Rousso)

The cash games will have themed shows as well, though all of them have the same basics, such as a $100,000 minimum and $250,000 maximum buy-in and $200-$400 blinds. Straddles and antes are optional and to be determined by each set of players.

Nets vs. Vets - online poker players tangle with live cash game pros (Caby, Benefield, and Cole South vs. Brunson, Gabe Kaplan, and Eli Elezra)

Railbird Heaven - players known for their high-stakes internet cash game play take it to the live table (Patrik Antonius, Ivey, Tom Dwan, Negreanu, Hellmuth, Gus Hansen and David Peat, the last two who will alternate)

Hellmuth Bash - players who have been known to disagree with Hellmuth get the chance to play against him (Dwan, Esfandiari, Laak, Tran, Bob Safai vs. Hellmuth)

The last two cash games mentioned will be two weeks each, and the additional two weeks of cash games will feature some of the biggest names in the game in a good old-fashioned high-stakes poker game.

Beginning on December 29, three weeks of episodes that remained unaired from Season 4 will air, followed by the new Season 5 episodes in January. Shows will air at the regular time on NBC, which is Mondays through Fridays at 2:05am ET/PT with a 1:00am director’s cut episode each Saturday night. However, each episode will also be available online at the NBC Sports website, in the poker section, within hours of its broadcast.

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