Weekly Wrap-up: CPT, WPT, and a Big Lineup from PokerStars
There has been no shortage of news in the poker industry this week, and plenty of it specifically Canadian. It seems that this time of the year brings people out of hibernation to thaw out and want to play some poker. If you missed any of our headlines, we've put together a recap of everything you should know from the past week.
Canadian Poker News
The Canadian Poker Tour (CPT) Spring Showdown at Grey Eagle Casino in Calgary, Alberta was an event that was eagerly anticipated by players in the western half of Canada, and it did not fail to meet, and exceed, expectations. It smashed every guarantee by double and players were raving about the great structure and experience.
The $1,100 Main Event concluded last Sunday, and Raymond Chen topped the field of 270 to win $62,500. Sean Giesbrecht was runner-up and earned $38,000. As the Main Event was coming to a close, the $3,300 High Roller was getting started. The event ran late on Day 2 and two Vancouver stars Daniel Idema and Jason Mann battled it out until early Tuesday morning. Idema managed to pull together the win and earned $35,000 while Mann got the second-best payout of $21,000.
CPT also put up a Player of the Series package for the player with the highest results across all of the events, powered by the Global Poker Index player-ranking system. Sean Giesbrecht stole the show by a long shot when he final-tabled three events in a row, culminating in his 2nd-place finish in the Main Event. His incredible results earned him cash for travel expenses, a VIP Suite at Aria Resort in Las Vegas, and a buy-in for an upcoming tournament.
Online Poker News
At the same time as the CPT Spring Showdown, the Full Tilt Online Poker Series (FTOPS) Main Event was running online, and Niall Farrell from the UK took a break after winning CPT Event 1 to play the premier $2,100 online event and went on to chop it three ways from Calgary. After the three-way deal, he won the title and the FTOPS jersey to go with the $236,232 prize. The other two players involved in the chop were Canadians Charles Sylvestre and Mike McDonald, who each earned $200,000 for their efforts, causing the rest of the world to wonder if there is something special in the Canadian air that makes our players so damn good at poker.
888poker made the announcement earlier this week that one of Canada's most talented female poker players, Xuan Liu, had joined Team 888poker. She has earned over $1.4 million in tournament cashes and joins a strong female contingent at 888 including Jackie Glazier, Jessica Dawley, and Sofia Lovgren.
PokerStars has a lot to offer Canadians right now. They recently announced the addition of a $1,100 event to their upcoming Canada Cup at Playground Poker Club just outside of Montreal, Quebec. This completes a trio of marquee events with the $3,300 Main Event and the $10,400 High Roller.
You are also currently able to qualify to play in their next PokerStars NHL Alumni Charity Tournament that will be filmed in the coming months to be televised later in the year on Sportsnet. Qualifiers will join PokerStars Team Pros and notable NHL stars at the table to try to win a share of $100K for their favourite charity.
To add even more excitement, there is also the Carnival of Tournaments on PokerStars right now. This series is to celebrate the upcoming 900 millionth tournament on PokerStars, a momentous milestone that has spurred the good people of PokerStars to offer a whole plethora of generous, value-added events.
Global Poker News
The final World Poker Tour (WPT) event of the season before the WPT Championship next week, the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown, was won by a Canadian that we watched run deep in WPT Canadian Spring Championship just a few weeks earlier. Eric Afriat topped the 1,795 entry field, the largest in the tour's history, and earned $1,081,184 for his effort.
In this week's Global Poker Index (GPI) update, we saw Jonathan Duhamel from Quebec rejoin the top 10 players in the world in the GPI player-ranking system. He now sits in 8th and joins fellow Canadians Daniel Negreanu and Mike McDonald in 1st and 6th respectively.
In completely unrelated news, we reported on three Canadians who were posing as poker players to cover for a methamphetamine operation in Australia. They were arrested at Crown Casino in Melbourne and are now facing life sentences.