Calling the Clock: WPT Japan; Powerfest $35m GTD; Leonard on bitB Staking

TAGs: Calling the Clock, Editorial

In this week’s Calling The Clock the World Poker Tour announce plans to move into Japan, partypoker announce a $35m GTD Powerfest, and Patrick Leonard gives us a sneak peek behind the curtain at bitB Staking.

I always like to begin with the most important piece of news, and this week I give the nod to the World Poker Tour (WPT) and their envoy into the land of the rising sun.

I know the live grinders have begun belittling the tour for hosting an event that doesn’t have any cash prizes, but we have to remember that the legislation is not yet ironed out, and a presence in the region is better than no presence.

WPT Japan takes place November 23-26 in Tokyo, with the winner’s earning packages to future WPT Asia-Pacific based live events. Points made in the WPT Japan Main Event will also count in the WPT Asia-Pacific Player of the Year race.

Once WPT Japan gets close to the money, the Action Clock will kick into effect on all tables. The WPT and Protection Poker confirmed that with immediate effect all WPT Main Events would use the countdown clock at all tables when the action gets close to the bubble.

It’s not a full on change like the one 888Live did in their Main Events and High Rollers, but it’s certainly a step in the right direction to what I believe will be a 100% shot clock compliant live tournament scene within the next five years.

None of this matters, however, if North Korea decides to go a little bonkers and send nuclear warheads to the States and Japan. This week, we learned that North Korean hackers were trying to infiltrate online poker and online gambling websites to syphon money into Kim Jong-un’s nuclear arsenal piggy-bank.

The World Series of Poker Raise The Guarantee of The Rozvadov Event, And Partners With partypoker 

The World Series of Poker Europe (WSOCalling the Clock: WPT Japan; Powerfest $35m GTD; Leonard on bitB StakingPE) in Rozvadov, Czech Republic will now include a €5m guaranteed Main Event, an increase of €1m, with the winner guaranteed to take home a seven-figure score.

King’s Casino owner, Leon Tsoukernik, made the change after it became apparent that people were going to descend on his casino like flies on a dead tortoise. The casino owner also pulled out of the €111,111 One Drop High Roller because he believes he will need every single one of the 111 seats, after confirming over 90+ people are already signed up to play.

And partypoker will be partnering with the WSOP for the first time in their history. The two companies will slip under the silky sheets at WSOP Brazil. partypoker will be the online poker room of choice for online satellite qualification into the event that takes place Sep 27 – Oct 4. partypoker replace 888Poker, who sponsored the event in 2016.

partypoker Announce Huge Powerfest Guarantee, and €1m GTD Nordic Poker Championships 

Sticking with partypoker, and this week the online giant announced further details of their next Powerfest event. There will be €35m in guarantees on the line with double digit games offering a €1m guarantee. The event takes place 3-24 September, at the same time PokerStars will be hosting the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). So far the Red Spade has kept quiet about their guarantees.

And partypoker announced plans to host the Nordic Poker Championships. Only players holding a Nordic passport, or are resident in a Nordic country can play. The online poker room has slapped a €1m guarantee on the tin, and the Grandior Hotel, Prague, Czech Republic will play host in December due to regulatory comfort.

PokerStars Welcome Zedd to Barcelona, And Create $1.7m MicroMillions Prizepool 

The PokerStars Championship in Barcelona is likely to be one of the events of the year, and the player’s party will be the coolest place in Spain when the DJ and Producer Zedd plays a 90-minute show. The GRAMMY award winning artist also plans to play some poker.

The PokerStars MicroMillions event was another outstanding success. The $22 buy-in Main Event attracted over 85,000 entrants, and ElCheikhh took the title and $95,829,86 first prize after cutting a five-way deal, that saw the quintet secure a payout 3,000 times higher than the original buy-in.

Individual Praise 

Viktor “Isildur1” Blom is back on the heater train after hitting a milestone of $1.8m in online cash game profits for the year at the back end of June. The Swede is currently sitting at $1.2m, the second best performance of the year, including a day in June where he finished half a million dollars in profit for the session.

Kenny Hallaert continued his heater by winning the PokerStars Super Tuesday for $57,000. Jaime Staples is on course to win his $150,000 weight loss prop bet with Bill Perkins after already losing 50 pounds, and Joey Ingram is the latest to take advantage of Perkins’s good heart, hoping to turn $5k into $15k if he can learn to swim a mile by the end of September. Ingram can’t swim.

The Swiss player Simon Boss won the Poker EM Main Event in Austria for the second time in the past three years. Boss earned €120,000 for the win. And Carter Myers was victorious in the largest ever live tournament held in the state of Iowa. The Mid-States Poker Tour (MSPT) Iowa State Poker Championships attracted 496 entrants. Myers earned $115,109 for the win.

Bits and Bobs 

The Governor of North Carolina wasn’t in a charitable mood when he vetoed a bill that would allow non-profits to use gambling as a means of raising money for good causes in the state. Gov. Roy Cooper was concerned the new laws would allow video poker machines to take over the minds of innocent bystanders.

The Charity Series of Poker (CSOP) has a different view. Matt Stout and his team agreed to support the Jeff Conine Celebrity Poker Classic at the Seminole Hard Rock, Florida. All proceeds from the event will benefit the Jeff Conine Clubhouse and the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital.

Online card sharp Daniel Carter allowed us to take a peek into his habits and routines. Patrick Leonard did the same with his bitB Staking platform, and I offered my opinion on Doug Polk creating a reputation on the back of destroying others and the lacklustre creation of Poker Night in America’s (PNIA) King of the Hill tournament.

Time ladies & gentlemen, please.

Someone has just called the clock.


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