Virtue Poker has announced that brand ambassador, Phil Ivey, will play in the $1m buy-in Big One For One Drop, and the cryptocurrency based online poker room is offering a percentage of his action to ten lucky sweepstake winners.
On my morning Montenegro runs, I would see Phil Ivey eating breakfast in a small cafe away from the very public setting of the Maestral Resort & Casino.
It looked like a dive.
The Maestral is five-star.
The food is class.
I guess Ivey is so used to evading poker people that even at an event where there was minimal press and only elite poker players, he still preferred the beaten track.
He’s no peacock.
Ivey was in Montenegro to support the money men behind Triton Poker, but he also had a personal reason for being there.
Ivey signed as an advisor in November, and you can find his mush in rogues gallery alongside fellow Virtue Poker ambassadors Brian Rast and Dan Colman.
When Ivey beat 61 entrants to take the HKD 4,749,200 (USD 604,992) first prize in the HKD 250,000 (USD 32,000) No-Limit Hold’em Short-Deck Ante Only event he did all of his post-match interviews wearing a Virtue Poker t-shirt.
Of course, he was always going to turn up at the World Series of Poker (WSOP). It has nothing to do with bracelet bets, catching Phil Hellmuth, or legacies. The man is doing what he can to support an initiative he hopes will make him a wealthy man.
Want a Piece of Ivey?
Phil Ivey is playing in the $1m One Drop.
Virtue Poker announced a promotion called A Piece of Ivey where the crypto-fuelled online poker room declared they have 30% of Ivey’s action in $100,000 of WSOP events and 5% of his One Drop action.
In a bid to pull in more punters to the Virtue Poker web, the team are offering ten people the opportunity to win an equal share of this action in a random sweepstake.
Head to Virtue Poker’s website, enter your name, email and country of origin. Job done. The sweepstake opens at 12 pm (EST) June 12 and ends 2 pm (EST) July 23.
The ten winners are each guaranteed a minimum $10,000 between them, but could win an equal share of $750,000+ in winnings should Ivey have a terrific summer ending in a One Drop win.
In 2012, Antonio Esfandiari defeated 48 entrants, including Sam Trickett, heads-up, to win the first-ever $1m buy-in One Drop for $18,346,673, a prize that remains the most significant ever handed out in poker’s history.
Two years later, and Dan Colman beat 42 entrants, and Daniel Negreanu, heads-up, to win the $15,306,668, in a calendar year that saw him win over $16m.
In 2016, the event moved to Monte Carlo, and Elton Tsang beat 28 entrants to claim the $12,248,912 first prize, beating Anatoly Gurtovy, heads-up.
Will Ivey become the second Virtue Poker representative to win the world’s biggest tournament?
The One Drop plays out July 15-17, with PokerGO showing the latter stages on the 16 & 17.
Ivey is joint second place in the all-time WSOP bracelet charts with ten (alongside Johnny Chan and Doyle Brunson). Phil Hellmuth, who almost certainly will feature in the One Drop, leads the way with 14.
Ivey is the second player officially announced as a One Drop participant after the WSOP unveiled King’s Casino owner, Leon Tsoukernik, as the first pick in November.