After six long, grueling days, the 2015 WSOP Main Event has delivered the fatal blow to 6,393 of the total 6,420 field of entrants. Of the mere 27 that remain, all eyes are on Daniel Negreanu. The 40 year old Canadian poker pro has accomplished many things in the poker world – far more than most can ever dream of – but the WSOP Main Event Championship has perpetually eluded him.

Daniel Negreanu in Final 27 at 2015 WSOP Main EventHe learned to play poker at 15 and by 22 he was packing his bags, leaving Toronto for the brilliant lights of Las Vegas to ‘live the dream’. Success wasn’t instant, but in 1997 the live tournament scene welcomed him with open arms. He cashed in 6 events, three being 1st place finishes, and collected over $75k that year. It was all uphill from there.

Daniel Negreanu has since become one of the most decorated poker pros in the world, earning the nickname ‘Kid Poker’. He’s captured a total of 6 WSOP bracelets and 2 WPT Titles. He has already been inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame, tying David ‘Chip’ Reese as the youngest inductee at age 40. He’s been named CardPlayer’s Player of the Year twice, and is ranked #1 on the Poker All Time Money List with $30,095,734 in live tournament cashes.

With so many accolades, it may surprisesome to learn that, despite a multitude of attempts, Daniel Negreanu has never even cashed in the WSOP Main Event. Twice he’s landed in the bubble of the WSOP Europe Main Event, finishing 43rd in 2012 and 25th in 2013, but the ultimate prize of all – the WSOP Main Event Championship – is now just 26 eliminations from his grasp.

Final 27 of 2015 WSOP Main Event, Daniel Negreanu in 9th

As the final 27 players wait to be seated at the last three tables just a few hours from now, Daniel Negreanu holds the 9th highest chip stack of 8,495,000. The leader going into Day 7 is Thomas Kearney (14,400,000), followed closely by Matt Guan (14,230,000) and Erasmus Morfe (12,085,000), all of American descent.

As Day 6 came to a close, Daniel Negreanu told CardPlayer TV how he felt about his position in the 2015 WSOP Main Event, guaranteed to earn his first cash and, hope upon hope, a Championship bracelet.

“There is one event in the world that everybody pays attention to, even if they’re not into poker, and this is the one!” said Kid Poker. “So making a deep run here is extra special. Winning is like that feather in the cap that we all want before we die, and this is a great opportunity. I’m going to seize the moment.”

Notable Eliminations from Day 6 of the 2015 WSOP Main Event

Yesterday’s action saw some remarkable players heading for the rails.

Bracelet winner Justin Bonomo found his chip stack running dry in 64th, worth a $96,445 payday. 2x EPT titlist Toby Lewis ran aground in 53rd for $137,300, followed by 2010 WSOP Main Event  final tablist Matt Jarvis in 51st for the same $137,300 cash.

Brian Hastings, who’s already snagged two bracelets this year (3 in all), was ousted in 49th place for $137,300 as well. Bracelet holder Steve Gross fell in 47th, also for $137,300, trailed by online poker pro Mark “P0ker H0” Kroon in 43rd for $164,086.

One of the last to exit the arena last night was Kelly Minkin, who collected $211,811 for finishing 29th and earned the esteemed title of last woman standing in the 2015 WSOP Main Event.

Final 27 of 2015 WSOP Main Event

Rank Player Name Chip Count
1 Thomas Kearney 14,400,000
2 Matt Guan 14,230,000
3 Erasmus Morfe 12,085,000
4 Joe McKeehen 11,975,000
5 Mario Sequeira 11,685,000
6 David Stefanski 11,485,000
7 Alexander Turyansky 10,785,000
8 Zvi Stern 9,940,000
9 Daniel Negreanu 8,495,000
10 Justin Schwartz 7,510,000
11 Patrick Chan 7,400,000
12 Anton Morgenstern 6,955,000
13 Thomas Cannuli 6,220,000
14 John Allan Hinds 6,210,000
15 Pierre Neuville 6,000,000
16 Chad Power 5,300,000
17 Blake Bohn 5,000,000
18 Federico Butteroni 4,980,000
19 Fedor Holz 4,645,000
20 Neil Blumenfield 4,315,000
21 Christoph Brand 4,120,000
22 Joshua Beckley 3,745,000
23 James Magner 3,500,000
24 Max Steinberg 3,290,000
25 Kilian Kramer 3,175,000
26 George McDonald 2,875,000
27 David Peters 2,100,000


The pride of the Italian professional poker community, Max Pescatori, will be taking home his 4th WSOP bracelet; his second this year. The 44 year old poker pro cashed in for $292,158 on Monday after surviving Daniel Negreanu and Stephen Chidwick in the 2015 WSOP $10,000 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo Championship.

Max Pescatori wins 2nd WSOP Bracelet of 2015With a 5-figure buy-in, the 3 Day event drew a crowd of 111 participants to the Rio’s registration booths. By the end of Day 1, Pescatori was on the low-end of the stacks, failing to receive notable mention among the 64 players set to return for Day 2. He fared better upon his return, one of only 11 players worthy of going into Day 3. Chidwick led with 808k chips at the start, but the Italian pro wasn’t far behind at 549k.

Shortly after the elimination of Richard Sklar, the final 6 converged on center stage, featuring a wide range of nationalities: Thomas Butzhammer of Austria, Gary Benson of Australia, Aleksandr Denisov of Russia, Daniel Negreanu of Canada, Stephen Chidwick of England and Max Pescatori of Italy.

Butzhammer was the first to fall, ending in 6th for $51,022. After eliminating the Austrian, Benson found himself short stacked, falling victim to Pescatori in 5th for $63,981. Next out was Denisov, collecting $81,865 for 4th when Chidwick scooped the remainder of his chips.

That left three elite poker pros around the felt. On the very next hand, Chidwick jumped head of Pescatori with 1.2mm, but Negreanu held the lead with 1.4mm. Soon after, it looked like the Brit was going to sweep the table when he rose to 2.1mm, leaving just over 600k in front of each of his opponents, but that wasn’t the case.

All three took part in the hand that would end up being the demise of Negreanu. Pescatori scooped the pot, sending Daniel out in 3rd for $113,062, and thus began his comeback. Just a few hands later, the Italian poker pro was ahead 2-to-1 in the counts, and the very next hand would seal the deal.

Back and forth they bet until the sixth street, when Chidwick put the last of his 1.12mm in the pot, and the cards were tabled.

Max Pescatori: K♠ 10♦ / 10♣ 8♥ 5♠ 2♣ / (x)
Stephen Chidwick: K♣ J♣ / 8♦ K♥ 10♥ 7♣ / (x)

Chidwick was ahead with a pair of Kings to Pescatori’s 10’s, but as he pulled the A♠ on seventh, preparing to double up and take the lead, his Italian foe drew a gorgeous set with 10♠.

Max Pescatori was crowned the victor of the 2015 WSOP $10k 7 Card Stud H-Lo Championship, awarded his 4th WSOP bracelet – the second this year alone – and $292,158 for the 1st place finish.

After getting the closest he’s ever come to a bracelet of his own—Chidwick has made 9 WOSP final tables in his career—Stephen was left with the honorable consolation prize of $180,529.

2015 WSOP $10k 7 Card Stud Hi-Lo Championship
Final Table Results

1st Max Pescatori $292,158
2nd Stephen Chidwick $180,529
3rd Daniel Negreanu $113,062
4th Aleksandr Denisov $81,865
5th Gary Benson $63,981
6th Thomas Butzhammer $51,022

The game of poker is technically classified as a sport. But when we think of sports, we picture young, virile athletes with toned muscles. If you saw a silver-haired senior running the length of a basketball court with the likes of Steph Curry, who do you think would win? It’s that exact sentiment that 72 year old Andre Boyer believes worked to his advantage last night at the 2015 WSOP.

Andre Boyer wins 2015 WSOP Split Format NLHEBoyer was one of 873 entrants in Event #34, $1,500 Split-Format No Limit Holdem. And if you’re not familiar with “split format” poker, you probably don’t play a great deal of variety online.

The split format structure was originally devised as an online poker format for fast-paced grinders who put in long hours at the virtual tables. For this 2015 WSOP event, it meant Day 1 would consist of full tables, Day 2 would shrink down to 6-handed, and Day 3 would be comprised of all heads-up matches. Finally, once just 8 players remained standing, they would be merged into a full, final table of 8.

This may not sound like your grandfather’s poker game, but if Andre Boyer happens to be your grandfather, it most certainly is!

Andre Boyer, 2 Decades of WSOP Success

Hailing from Quebec, Canada, Boyer is no novitiate to the felt, or the World Series of Poker. In fact, he’s cashed at least once in every WSOP since 1996 except two (2000, 2012). In that first year, Andre Boyer actually found himself seated at the 1996 WSOP Main Event, finishing in 6th place for $97,500 before Huck Seed went on to win it.

It wasn’t until 2005 that the Canadian poker pro experienced ultimate success at the World Series of Poker. He entered a $3,000 NL Holdem event, 1,010 entrants strong, and went on to defeat American poker pro Matt Glantz in heads-up to collect his first WSOP bracelet and $682,810.

With last night’s win, Andre Boyer increased his career live tournament winnings to $1,560,604.

2015 WSOP Brings 2nd Bracelet for Andre Boyer

The WSOP victory that almost never happened; that was Boyer’s experience last night at the Rio.

When the final table was polished down to two, Boyer faced off with French poker pro Erwann Pecheux. Boyer was way down in the counts, holding a mere 10♣ 5♠. When the flop fell Q♦ 10♠ J♦, it was all he could do to shove his remaining chips into the middle.

But Pecheux was quick to call, tabling J♣ 4♣. With the Frenchman well ahead, Boyer found minimal solace in the A♥ turn that offered a slight chance of chopping the pot. But then his tournament life was miraculously restored by the 10♦ river, giving Boyer the set, the win, and a renewed chance to win his second bracelet.

It took only 6 more hands for Andre Boyer to collect the rest of the chips. Up 5.5mm to Erwann’s 1.3mm, the Canadian did not hesitate to call when Percheux shipped.

Andre Boyer: A♥ 3♦
Erwann Percheux: K♠ 6♠

The crowd was mostly silent as the dealer began laying out the board: 4♦ J♣ J♠ 10♦ 8♥

And with that, Andre Boyer was crowned the victor, receiving his second WSOP bracelet and a worthy prize $250,483.

Erwann Percheux was gravely disappointed, having finished runner up on several occasions in major events, but never earning a title. He did not go home empty handed, though, pocketing $156,098 for his 2nd place finish.

In his post-win interview, Boyer was asked how he felt about competing against a predominantly younger crowd. “I really think being older can be an advantage,” he said. “They look at me and think I’m a tourist. That’s okay with me. I try to turn that to my advantage.”

It’s official – Keith Lehr has earned his 2nd World Series of Poker bracelet after taking down the 2015 WSOP $10k Heads-Up Championship (Event #10) for $334,430!

What’s not official, however, is whether there was a cheater in the midst in the final rounds of heads-up play. Several of his opponents have alleged that 5th place finisher Valeriu Coca was not playing a straight game.

Keith Lehr Wins 2015 WSOP HU Championship

Keith Lehr wins 2015 WSOP $10k Heads Up Championship

Keith Lehr 2015 WSOP $10k Heads-Up Champion photo courtesy

Keith Lehr adorned his second WSOP bracelet on Thursday after defeating a field of 128 entrants in the 2015 WSOP $10,000 NLHE Heads-Up Championship. It’s been 12 years since the American poker pro collected his first piece of jewelry in a 2003 WSOP $3k PL Holdem event worth $255k. His latest win put another $334k in his pocket, bringing his career live tournament total to $2.18 million.

Lehr faced fellow American Paul Volpe in the final heads-up battle; one that turned out to be much quicker than his previous 6 opponents. It took just 24 hands for Lehr to overcome Volpe, but it wasn’t an easy task.

Paul commanded the table early on, up 4.495mm chips to Keith’s 3.185mm by hand #9. But by hand #16, the tides shifted heavily when Volpe got the majority of his chips in on Ace-High. Having flopped top pair, Lehr called him all the way down to a 1.2mm bet on the river. After tanking for a bit, Lehr made that call as well. His Jacks prevailed and he took a strong lead of nearly 3-to-1 in the counts.

From there, it was just a matter of time. The next 7 hands were a mix of walks and bet-folds, leading up to hand #24.

Volpe raised 80k from the button, called by Lehr before the flop came down 7c-6h-3d. A few raises later and a tanked called by Volpe brought the Qs turn. Keith Lehr wasted no time shoving his stack. Volpe hesitated before calling with his remaining 1.5mm.

Lehr tabled Qd-8s, good for top pair, but Volpe’s 6s-3s was ahead. It looked like Paul would survive and snag a huge pot, but the 8c river put an end to the day.

Keith Lehr hit QQ-88 to beat Volpe, claim the last of the chips and win the coveted bracelet, along with $334,430 for 1st.

For his impressive efforts, Paul Volpe was awarded the 2nd place prize of $206,620.

On a side note, Volpe is well on his way to another high-money finish, ranked second in chips behind Jason Koon in the 2015 WSOP $10k PL Holdem Championship, where just 10 players remain in contention as of writing.

Valeriu Coca Accused of Cheating his way to 5th

Valeriu Coca accused of Cheating at 2015 WSOPAmidst the celebration of Keith Lehr’s win, a much darker story was brewing in the background. Valeriu Coca, who was eliminated during the Round of 8 by Lehr, was being accused of cheating his way to that position.

His primary accuser is Connor Drinan, who lost to Coca in the first money-round of the tournament (i.e. Drinan walked away empty handed). Drinan said that Coca played very slowly, double checking his cards often and always waiting for Drinan to look at his cards before Coca would lift his own. In short, Drinan accused Coca of marking the cards.

Connor said Coca played perfect against him up until he started waiting for Coca to look at his cards first. Once Drinan became more guarded, he said Coca was clearly uncomfortable, started folding and playing worse, although he still won the match.

According to Drinan, Coca’s other opponents felt Valeriu was playing strangely as well and suspected something underhanded was going on; including Keith Lehr and Byron Kaverman. When it was all over, Kaverman lead the charge by filing a complaint with WSOP Tournament Director Jack Effel, who called for an immediate investigation.

SethPalansky, VP of Corporate Communication for the WSOP, said, “We are aware, monitoring very closely with all resources at our disposal. Those include surveillance, security, and forensic examination of cards. We take integrity very seriously, as evidenced by our lifetime bans, and would enjoy nothing more than catching a cheater in our midst.”

Valeriu Coca Already Banned from Poker in Prague

Accusations of cheating are extremely serious. Already, many poker pros have scorned Coca’s accusers for being sore losers. But in the case of Valeriu Coca, there is at least good reason to be suspicious; not just because of his mysterious behavior in the 2015 WSOP HU Championship event, but because he’s been caught marking cards before.

According to reports, Cocoa spent a great deal of time hustling poker players in Prague. As the story goes, he would start at low limits, playing terribly and losing often, then move up to high limits where everyone wanted to play against him. That’s when sources say he began marking cards, and after a short while, played a very loose aggressive game that saw him winning consistently.

This went on for months before a dealer finally noticed the cards were visibly marked, with all Aces and Kings ever-so-slightly bent at the corners. Valeriu Coca was subsequently banned from all Prague casinos, and players who faced him back then said he played the same way as he did in the 2015 WSOP HU Championship; slowly, asking for opponent’s chip counts and waiting for them to pick up their cards before he did.

Is Valeriu Coca a cheater, or a very calculating poker player who got into the heads of his opponents to earn the 5th place prize of $54,545? We will have to wait until the WSOP finalizes its investigation to know for sure.

The World Series of Poker has been a staple of the industry for 45 years, paving the way for evolution in the game of poker around the globe. This year’s announcement of a revolutionary WOSP Online Bracelet Event is a huge leap into the modern technological age, but not one that everyone agrees with. And according to some sources, the original structure for the event announced last month may be changed before the 2015 WSOP gets underway.

2015 WSOP Online Bracelet Event 64Never before has the WSOP awarded a gold bracelet in any forum except live poker tables at the designated venue in Las Vegas, Nevada. The 2015 WSOP will change all that as organizers announced the summer schedule in February, including a historical milestone – an online bracelet event set to take place on

The online tournament is slated for July 2nd as Event #64 on the 2015 WSOP schedule. With a buy-in of $1,000 to the NLHE tournament, the original structure was devised to bring the final two players out of the online realm and onto a live table at the Rio on July 3rd.  Due to concerns about timing and a potentially short televised end to the highly anticipated online bracelet event, organizers are hoping to change the final table format.

According to PokerFuse, WSOP organizers have sought the permission of the Nevada Gaming Control Board to alter the final table arrangement. Instead of televising a heads-up finish on July 3rd, they want push it to July 4th, making the 3rd a “travel day” so that final tablists who aren’t already in easy traveling distance to Las Vegas have time to make it to the Rio. They would also prefer to have the final six players enter the live stage, rather than just two.

“We had concerns initially of getting the players to the Rio the next day to play out the event live,” said Caesars Interactive VP of Corporate Communications, Seth Palansky. He explained that they’ve “decided that July 3 will be a ‘travel day’ in essence for any players not in proximity to Las Vegas. As such, we will play the final table on July 4 now. This allows us to increase the live portion to six players and know we can get them all to the Rio in time.”

WSOP officials are declining all requests for comment for the time being. A spokesperson said that no comments will be issued regarding the proposed changed to the 2015 WSOP online bracelet event until the Nevada Gaming Control Board makes its decision.

Positive/Negative Responses to a 2015 WSOP Online Bracelet Event

The reaction from professional poker players regarding the first ever online bracelet event at the 2015 WSOP have been mixed.

One prominent supporter of the interactive transition has been Greg Merson, winner of the 2012 WSOP Championship. Merson called the online bracelet event his “favorite part of the schedule” this year. “Online has been a big boost for the game and rewarding the industry with a bracelet is amazing,” explained the former WSOP champ.

On the opposite end of the spectrum are players like 2013 WSOP bracelet winner Trevor Pope. “I think the WSOP online event is going to be quite overrated,” criticized Pope. His largest gripe seemed to be that serious online poker players prefer to multi-table, stating that “I personally won’t be playing the online event because I will just get too bored playing one table myself…”

Pope went on to condemn the requirements for participating in an online bracelet event compared to a live structure. Throughout history, the WSOP has been “a poker series played at the casino where all you need is a ‘chip and a chair’ as they say, but this is putting a whole new spin on that because now you need a good computer, reliable Internet, a place to play, and probably some good tracking software.”

In the end, though, Pope admitted that he could be wrong, and that the 2015 WSOP online bracelet event could have “a huge turnout” and help to “push online poker in the right direction.”