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Poker News | World Poker News

Poker News Nuggets 09/03: Darius Goes West, Players Go to Cannes

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Poker News Nuggets are presented on PokerWorks each week to give readers a glance at some of the big news stories in and around the poker industry. From international poker tournaments to player prop bets, from political happenings to sponsorship deals, game enthusiasts can stay informed with these weekly tidbits of information.

What They’re Playing

EPT Vilamoura:
  After nearly a week at a Vilamoura resort in Portugal, the most recent PokerStars-sponsored European Poker Tour event wrapped on September 2. It all began with two starting days bringing 384 players to the tables to create a €1,862,400 prize pool, setting a record for the EPT tour location. When it played down to the final table, many eyes were on names like Sam Trickett and long-time pro Rob Hollink, not to mention UK football star Teddy Sheringham. But none of them could hang on to win the tournament, and British player Toby Lewis ended up taking it down, walking away with the title and €467,835 in prize money.

WPT London:  As the World Poker Tour took its first flight out of the United States for the third stop of Season 9, the London Poker Classic got underway with PartyPoker at the helm, providing blog updates and live reporting from the tournament floor. All in all, turnout was low, as only 171 players took to the tables, and the subsequent prize pool of £820,800 was set to pay out the final 18 players. That took place on Day 4, as they played toward the final table, and it was set at the end of the day with eight players, more than a usual WPT final table. Leading the way was Giovanni Safina, and though no well-known players were still alive, several PartyPoker qualifiers were looking to write a good story. The final table was set to take place on September 4.

Partouche:  The Partouche Poker Tour was in its third season, though most people outside of France knew little about it. But it has become one of the biggest draws for poker players in France, and many travel from around the world to participate. The most recent event started on September 2 in Cannes with a €8,500 buy-in, and as the final stages of registration were finishing on the second starting day, the number of players was closing in on 800. And there were big names in the field, including Liz Lieu, Phil Laak, Antonio Esfandiari, David Benyamine, Lacey Jones, the Mizrachi brothers, and Tom Dwan. Few live updates are being relayed in English, but bwin.com is one that is providing that service.

Who’s Playing

Hall of Fame Nominees: 
Voting was open for the official Poker Hall of Fame for several months. Throughout the summer, the general public could vote for players they felt most deserved the honor of an induction into the prestigious Hall of Fame. And the final tally was done, the top 10 people who received the most votes were released, and they were Chris Ferguson, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Harman, Dan Harrington, Phil Ivey, Linda Johnson, Tom McEvoy, Daniel Negreanu, Scotty Nguyen, and Erik Seidel. Several of them had been nominated the previous year, like McEvoy and Greenstein, but lost out to Mike Sexton, the lone 2009 inductee. At this point, the Governing Council will make sure all of the nominees meet the criteria, and then the 16 current members as well as 17 members of the poker media will vote for their choices. Those receiving a substantial percentage of the vote will be inducted in a ceremony later in 2010.

Darius Weems:  Most people know Darius Weems from his documentary entitled “Darius Goes West” about the teenager’s journey across the country in a wheelchair in search of getting on MTV’s “Pimp My Ride” show. His battle with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy is now well-known, as the film won 28 awards and raised almost $2 million for MD. Weems is now planning to celebrate his 21st birthday in Las Vegas on October 2 with a charity poker tournament at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. The 5pm event will raise money for DMD research through a $200 + $20 no-limit holdem tournament as well as live and silent auctions. Poker players Gavin Smith and Bryan Devonshire have committed to participate, and others are signing up now. Details can be found here.

Where They’re Playing

FSN: 
When the ninth season of the World Poker Tour got underway in July, the poker industry awaited an announcement about the broadcast rights for the latest series of tournaments. And it was announced on August 30 that Fox Sports Net renewed its contract with the WPT, not only for the current season but for the tenth and eleventh seasons as well. The three-year deal will bring the WPT to American airwaves on Sunday nights each week, though repeat shows can be found during the week as well. Season 9 broadcasts will debut in January of 2011 and feature new additions to the show like Kimberly Lansing as anchor and the Royal Flush Girls as ambassadors. And instead of its previous sponsor of Full Tilt Poker, the new shows will be sponsored by ClubWPT.com, an online poker subscription and sweepstakes website.

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