WPT Season XVII Debuts on FOX Sports this Sunday

WPT Season XVII Debuts on FOX Sports this Sunday

It starts tomorrow night. A new season of World Poker Tour episodes on FOX Sports Regional Networks, with new episodes every Sunday night beginning March 31. There will be rerun opportunities each week, but why take a chance? Set the TiVo or DVR.

For those poker fans who don’t follow the weekly and monthly tour stops of the World Poker Tour, they will find a plethora of tournaments featuring big names, high rollers, and exciting poker at tables from Los Angeles to Uruguay. Their trip through the WPT season on FOX will bring all of the big names and big money to which they’re accustomed.

Hardcore players and fans who keep up with the action via WPT live updates and social media will have to think back to 2018 to remember some of the tournaments that will be broadcast this Sunday and those to come. Some date back as far as November 2017, and the episodes will bring seven of the events through the airwaves with all of the bright lights and extravagant stages for which the WPT is known.

The 24 episodes to air on FOX Sports Regional Networks in the coming months will feature the first part of Season XVII, which is the season that is still ongoing through May.

And for the second season, Tony Dunst will return as a commentator alongside Vince Van Patten. And Lynn Gilmartin returns for her sixth season as the show’s anchor. Also, some episodes will feature the WPT Raw Deal segment with Phil Hellmuth, who replaced Dunst in the role.

High Rollers in Los Angeles

The first episodes of the new season on FOX will take players back to February 27-28, 2018. The WPT LAPC Rockstar Energy High Roller was a $25K buy-in high-stakes tournament, which took place at Commerce Casino in Los Angeles.

There were 50 entries in total, creating a prize pool of $1.25 million. The first day thinned the field to the final table, but not before Cary Katz busted on the money bubble and Darren Elias departed in seventh place, on the final table bubble but with $56,250 as a payout.

The final table was then set with $424,625 for the winner and $71,375 as the payout for the sixth-place finisher. The chip counts were as follows:

Alex Foxen:  1,630,000 chips

Maria Ho:  1,025,000 chips

Eli Berg:  705,000 chips

Sam Panzica:  640,000 chips

Nick Petrangelo:  570,000 chips

Isaac Baron:  430,000 chips

Champs in Las Vegas

It may not be next in the lineup, but there will be episodes featuring the inaugural ClubWPT Challenge of the Champs, which was filmed at HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas. This was a special event that took two qualifiers from ClubWPT to play against six members of the WPT Champions Club. The qualifiers and champions were:

Qualifier:  Monte Phelps

Qualifier:  Thomas Wallett

WPT Champ:  David Williams

WPT Champ:  Yevgeniy Timoshenko

WPT Champ:  Darren Elias

WPT Champ:  Mohsin Charania

WPT Champ:  Mike Sexton

WPT Champ:  Scotty Nguyen

DeepStacks in Uruguay

In a rare trip many miles to the south of the United States, the action went to the Enjoy Punta del Este Casino and Resort in Uruguay in November of 2017. With many qualities of a WPT DeepStacks event, the Brasil Poker Live presentation of WPT Uruguay offered a $1,500 buy-in tournament.

There were 410 total players in the event, which created a prize pool of $536,895. The field was thinned to just 198 players for Day 2, but only 52 of them made the money. Jose Barbero was among those who cashed but didn’t make the list of 22 players going on to Day 3.

That decisive day ended when Mathias Duarte busted in seventh place, and the final six players were then set up to play for a minimum of $21,075 and a top prize of $109,860.

Kaue Vinicius De Souza:  4.53 million chips

Brian Kaufman:  3.04 million chips

Laura Moreno:  1.63 million chips

Miguel Branas:  1.12 million chips

Mario Bonanata:  1.015 million chips

Juan Gonzalez:  940,000 chips

High Rollers in Las Vegas

Another tournament to be featured during the season is the WPT Bellagio High Roller event, which took place in May 2018 at the Bellagio on the Las Vegas Strip. The $25K buy-in produced a total of 54 entries, along with a $1.35 million prize pool.

Day 2 was a whirlwind until registration closed, and play was fairly quick toward the money bubble. Byron Kaverman did bust on that bubble, which led to Ankush Mandavia cashing in eighth place for $54K and Anthony Zinno out in seventh place for $67,500.

The final six players took a two-week break before playing it out at HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas, but they had a first-place prize of $432K to keep them motivated. Sixth place was to pay $81K. And the Day 2 chipleader took the lead into the final table that was set up as follows:

Tom Marchese:  2,359,000 chips

David Peters:  1,575,000 chips

Aaron Ogus:  857,000 chips

Sam Soverel:  391,000 chips

Rainer Kempe:  175,000 chips

Jake Schindler:  43,000 chips

Cash Games in Los Angeles

For the first time, the WPT hosted a cash game that will be broadcast in this season of shows. It was filmed at Commerce Casino in Los Angeles in the spring of 2018.

The game was a $100/$200 No Limit Hold’em with a minimum buy-in of $50K. Players like Jennifer Tilly, Olivier Busquet, Dan Shak, Bryn Kenney, Mike Lind, and Art Papazyan.



About Jennifer Newell

Jennifer began writing about poker while working at the World Poker Tour in the mid-2000s. Since then, her freelance writing career has taken her from Los Angeles to Las Vegas and back to her hometown of St. Louis, where she now lives with her two dogs. She continues to follow the poker world as she also launches a new subscription box company and finishes her first novel. Jennifer has written for numerous publications including PokerStars.com and has followed the US poker and gaming market closely for the last 15 years. Follow Jen on Twitter

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