POKER PODIUM: Nice Wins from Kenny Hallaert, Niklas Astedt; PCA, PSPC Events Wrap Up & More

Poker Podium once again takes a look at online and live poker winners from January including nce scores from Kenny Hallaert and Niklas Astedt.

The poker world was busy in January with many online events as well as players heading to some major live events. That included some major online series with Kenny Hallaert, Niklas Astedt, and others finding some nice wins.

GGPoker ambassador Jason Koon also received some welcome news in January, meaning keeping some big winnings from his heads-up battle with Phil Hellmuth. The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure also recently wrapped up with some huge winners.

Poker Podium once again takes a look at January winners from the online and live poker felts.

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No doubt the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) was a major event for the site over the last month. Several players won big in the series in January and early February. That included Belarus’s Aliaksandr Shylko scoring the win in the $25,000 PokerStars Player Championship for $3.1 million.

The tournament included 400-plus Platinum Pass winners and attracted 1,014 entries for a $24.8 million prize pool.

The $10,000 PCA Main Event also wrapped up in January. That tournament saw Portugal’s Michel Dattani grab the top spot for $1.3 million. The event produced a field of 889 entries for an $8.6 million prize pool.

A few PokerStars online winners

In the online arena, Huber Sebastian celebrated his recent win in the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). The Stars ambassador and Twitch streamer scored a victory back in September, scoring more than $2,800 in the process. He was pleased with receiving his trophy.

Fellow ambassador Lex Veldhuis made a deep run in the New Year Series Main Event. That included knocking out fellow ambassador Ben “Spraggy” Spragg.

In the end, the tournament saw 5,362 entries with Switzerland’s “Scoops2022” scooping the title for $143,479. 


It’s been a huge run recently for GGPoker ambassador Jason Koon, with 2022 bringing plenty of wins and big finishes. A massive Triton Poker win for more than $1.9 million came his way in May.

In October, Koon added a Poker Masters title for $666,000. In December he also chalked up a win in the $50,000 PokerGO Tour Championship for $500,000.

If that weren’t enough, Koon walks away a winner from PokerGO’s High Stakes Duel. He scored $1.6 million after beating Phil Hellmuth in December. When no one stepped up to battle Koon, he was declared the winner of the series in January. He now has more than $42 million in live tournament winnings.

GG online winners

Numerous online players continue celebrating some GG tournament wins as well. That included streamer and YouTuber “Questje,” who also made his first online final table deal on the site.

Brazilian recreational player “Be Lima” turned a free qualifier ticket into a $1 tournament entry. He then took the top spot for a hearty return on investment.


The XL Winter Series wrapped up at 888 in January and awarded more than $1.5 million. The result easily topped the $1 million overall guarantee and saw several players scoop some nice paydays. In total, the series produced 16,168 entries with most buy-ins ranging from $5.50 to $55.

In the international competition, players from Romania and Brazil came out on top with five wins each. German players scored four titles while Lithuanians snagged three.

The $250 Main Event highlighted the series and featured a $500,000 guarantee. The mystery bounty event also featured a top bounty of $50,000 and the tournament saw 2,059 entries.

In the end, “AMG_people” came back from one of the shorter stacks at the final table to secure the win. The Ukrainian player bagged $37,592 in prize money and bounties. Ukraine’s “alwaySsmilee” finished runner-up for $32,567.

The $2,100 Super High Roller was another highlight and guaranteed $100,000. The event saw 51 entries for a $102,000 prize pool.

Sweden’s Niklas “tutten7” Astedt found the winner’s circle for $37,740. No stranger to poker success, Astedt has $1.8 million in live tournament winnings as well as other major wins online. Canada’sbeebsterizer” took runner-up for $25,500.

A look at 888 Live winners

In other 888 news, the site recently headed to Mardrid for the latest 888poker Live series. Spain’s Adrian Garcia came out on top for a nice score of €92,000.

Russia’s Oleg Bystrenin took runner-up for €60,000. 888’s newest ambassador Lucia Navarro also shined. The poker YouTiuber scored fourth for €27,000 and was pleased overall with her play.

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The PartyPoker Championship Winter Edition took center stage at PartyPoker in January. The  $530 Main Event highlighted the series, attracting 1,089 entries.

The tournament easily topped the $500,000 guarantee, garnering a $544,500 prize pool. Ireland’s Rytis Strigunas claimed the win for $78,160 after a deal with runner-up Victor Oliveira Girao, of Brazil, who scored $72,827.

Henrique Miguel Santos Da Silva, of the United Kingdom, took down the $35 Mini Main Event for $20,284. Well-regarded pro Kenny Hallaert scored the win in the $215 PKO Championship for $24,937.

PCA Update: Aliaksandr Shylko Grabs PokerStars PSPC Title, Isaac Haxton Wins Second High Roller

After months of awarding Platinum Passes and plenty of hype, the PSPC concluded Friday with Aliaksandr Shylko taking the title.

After months of awarding Platinum Passes and building plenty of hype, the PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Players Championship (PSPC) came to a close on Friday with Belarus’s Aliaksandr Shylko taking the title for $3.1 million.

The victory came after five days of tournament action that highlighted the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. The trip to the tropics turned out to be a major win for Shylko, who had just $423,369 in live tournament winnings before the huge cash.

“It was an amazing experience,” Shylko said afterward. “I had a lot of fun, I met a lot of good people, and winning such a big tournament, it’s amazing.”

In other news, Isaac Haxton proved to be one of the biggest winners of the series as well with a second high roller win. Here’s a look at the final days of action from the Bahamas.

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Shylko scores big in PokerStars PSPC

When action resumed on Friday, Shylko (pictured in lead image courtesy PokerStars/Danny Maxwell) sat second in chips and faced experienced players in chip leader Nacho Barbero and Pedro Marques in fourth.

Berbero found some early success, dispatching short-stacked Niclas Thumm early. Shylko managed his chip stack well, however, and also found the right card at a critical time. Rivering a straight with A♥10♥ against Philipe Pizzari’s A♣ K♥ proved to be a huge hand. Shylko hit a miracle card on the river and took the chip lead. 

After coming into the final table as chip leader, Berbero ultimately exited in fourth place. He noted that he had a bad run of cards and was frustrated despite pocketing $1.6 million.

“I couldn’t recover,” he said. “There are not many better opportunities to win $4 million. I’m happy for the result, but it’s a bit disappointing.”

Reaching a deal

In the end, the top three players agreed to a deal. Each player was guaranteed at least $2.5 million. They left $300,000 on the table to play for as well as the title or PSPC champion.

Shylko ended up heads up against Germany’s Max Menzel, who had entered the final table fifth in chips and made a huge jump overall. Heads-up play lasted just a single hand.

Menzel managed to hit a straight, but Shylko hit a full house. Shyklo becomes the second PSPC winner after Ramon Colillas won the first event in 2019.

Menzel earned his spot in the PSPC via Platinum Pass and certainly made it count. Niclas Thumm found a Platinum Pass route to the final table as well and made it pay off to the tune of seven figures.

In the end, the tournament produced a field of 1,014 entries for a $24.8 million prize pool. That included 418 Platinum Pass winners. Here’s a look at the final table payouts.

2023 PokerStars Players Championship

  1. Aliaksandr Shylko (Belarus) – $3,121,838
  2. Max Menzel (Germany) – $2,859,990
  3. Philipe Pizzari (Brazil) – $2,524,871
  4. Nacho Barbero (Argentina) – $1,551,300
  5. Pedro Marques (Portugal) – $1,251,500
  6. Niclas Thumm (Germany) – $1,001,200

Isaac Haxton chalks up another win

After winning the $100,000 PCA Super High Roller to start the series, Isaac Haxton bookended his run in the series with another big win on the final day of action. He took down the $100,000 NLHE event on Friday for $1.6 million.

In total, Haxton chalke up more than $3.1 million in winnings across the entire series, which also included a third-place finish. The performance also follows winning the final event in the PokerGO Cup in January for $598,000. It’s certainly been a nice few weeks for the high-stakes grinder from New York.

After the most recent win, Haxton now has more than $33.6 million in live tournament winnings. The event brought in 46 entries for a $4.5 million prize pool.

Germany’s Fedor Holz finished runner-up for $1 million. That came after a deep run in the PSPC, where he took 21st for $123,600.

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Ognyan Dimov grabs high roller title; other winners

In the $25,000 PCA High Roller, former European Poker Tour champion Ognyan Dimov found the top spot for $990,655. The tournament brought in 187 entries for a $4.4 million prize pool.

This is now the largest tournament score of the Bulgarian’s poker career and now has more than $4 million in live tournament winnings.

Ognyan Dimov celebrates his win in the PCA High Roller. (photo courtesy PokerStars/Manuel Kovsca)

In the $10,150 Six-Handed Unlimited Re-Entry, Switzerland’s Alexandre Vuilleumier found the winner’s circle for $237,700. The $3,100 NLHE Unlimited Re-Entry also produced a nice payout for the champion. Germany’s Maximilian Silz took the title for $101,430.

Brazil’s Kelvin Kerber scored the trophy and $110,910 in the $2,200 Deep Stack Single Re-Entry. After 70 events, the PCA came to a close on Friday. With so many Platinum Passes given out, the tournament brought together an interesting mix of recreational players and pros.

The sun, sand, and poker were hard to beat. Many players may already be asking if the PCA will return for 2024? Is PokerStars planning a third PSPC and more Platinum Passes up for grabs? Those answers remain to be seen, but stay tuned to PokerScout for details as more information is announced.

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Final Table Set in PokerStars Players Championship, Nacho Barbero Returns as Chip Leader

The PokerStars PSPC reached the final table on Thursday with six players returning to battle for the title and Nacho Barbero as chip leader.

The PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Players Championship reached the final table on Thursday with six players returning to battle for the title on Friday.

Argentina’s Nacho Barbero returns to the table as chip leader with 19.3 million chips. Just behind him is Belarus’s Aliaksandr Shylko with 12.2 million.

Two Platinum Pass winners also return to the final table, meaning a huge return on investment awaits those players. Friday brings a close to the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure festivities.

Stars ambassador Sam Grafton finished 12th in the PSPC for $238,700 and spoke for many about the experience.

“I think the atmosphere is unbelievable,” he told PokerScout. “Because people are bringing their families, girlfriends, partners, husbands, and loved ones. So that’s really nice – being able to just spend the morning on the beach, get the sand between your toes before you go and play poker.

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“There’s just a very convivial atmosphere at the tables. And then I think, not to blow our own trumpet, but I think we’ve done a really good job of making this a great event. We feel like we have the best dealers, staff, and organizational aspects for a tournament in the world. We’re setting the gold standard for how live events are conducted and I really think that we’ve done that here.”

The $250,000 Super High Roller also wrapped up on Thursday with a Canadian grabbing the top spot. Here’s a look at some of the recent action from the Bahamas.

PokerStars Players Championship final table

After four days of play, the end of the PSPC is now in sight with some major money on the line. The winner scores $4.1 million with sixth place taking just over $1 million. Here’s a look at the players at the final table.

Nacho Barbero, 19.3 million chips

Barbero (pictured in lead image courtesy PokerStars/Joe Giron) returns as one of the most experienced players at the final table. He’s a high-stakes cash game player with plenty of major tournament scores as well.

In total, Barbero has $5.4 million in live tournament winnings. That included winning a World Series of Poker bracelet last summer in a $10,000 Super Turbo Bounty for $587,520.

He has numerous other nice wins and finishes, and now has the chips and skills to possibly take an even bigger title.

Aliaksandr Shylko – 12.2 million

Aliaksandr Shylko

With $423,369 in live tournament winnings, Shylko has pocketed the biggest score of his tournament career. No doubt he’ll be gunning for the title and has the chips to make some waves.

Shylko’s best score came in the 2021 WSOP Circuit Main Event in the Czech Republic, taking fourth for $106,769. In 2019 he also scored a fourth-place finish in the same event for $86,798.

Philipe Pizzari – 12 million

Philipe Pizzari

The Brazilian has $353,892 in live tournament winnings with the biggest of that coming in a 2021 WSOP Main Event.

He scored $241,800 for that finish alone. Pizzari now has a much bigger score already in his pocket. If he can find more chips, he could be a tough player to contend with as well.

Pedro Marques – 10.5 million

Pedro Marques

This player from Portugal also returns as one of the more experienced players at the table. He has almost $3 million in live tournament winnings and now adds to that total significantly.

Marques is a regular on the European Poker Tour with numerous nice finishes on that series. In May he took down a €2,000 event at EPT Monte Carlo for $173,702.

His biggest score came in 2018 when he won the EPT Barcelona Main Event for $813,371. He’ll certainly be a player to watch at this final table.

Max Menzel – 5 million

Max Menzel

This German player sits on one of the two short stacks and will have some work to do to ladder up at the final table. However, with $1 million for just sixth place, he adds greatly to his ​​$108,574 in live tournament winnings.

Menzel works for a German logistics company and currently lives in Singapore. During time living in China, he was also a regular cash game player in Macau. He is one of two Platinum Pass winners at the final table after winning a Road to PSPC event in Manila.

Niclas Thumm – 1.8 million

Niclas Thumm

This is a second player hailing from Germany and another Platinum Pass winner. He won his pass by receiving votes among poker fans in the PokerStars “Dare2Stream” competition.

Thumm has only two live poker cashes for $415, but the Twitch streamer is a regular at the online tables. He is on the shortest stack and will be looking for a quick double. He spoke about how much he’s enjoyed the overall PSPC experience.

“On the one hand, it’s life-changing money, even min-cashing,” the 29-year-old told the PokerStars blog. “On the other hand, I’m enjoying every second of the tournament, playing my hands, and spectating the hands I’m not in.”

Despite being on e short stack, he planned on bringing his A-game to the table.

Platinum Pass winners score big

Beyond the two final table Platinum Pass winners, several others who grabbed a pass also found some nice winnings. Many of these winners saw huge gains in career earnings thanks to so many recreational players scoring passes and making some nice runs.

Tom Parsons, of the United Kingdom, turned his pass into a 16th-place finish for $165,600. The Team Paddy Power ambassador seems to have come a long way since the first PSPC in 2019.

Hugo Rodilla finished just one spot behind Parsons and also snagged $165,600. The Spanish Platinum Pass winner adds a nice amount to his $13,335 in live tournament winnings.

Spain’s Esteban Maquillon found a 19th-place finish for $142,100. He also greatly beefs up his $142,354 in winnings. Jerome Moreau, of France, almost doubled his liv e tournament winnings of $153,149. He finished 20th for $142,100.

One of the better Platinum Pass stories is 43-year-old Frenchman Renato Minicuci. He won a PokerStars Spin & Go freeroll promotion to earn his spot in the tournament, ultimately finishing 27th for $107,500. 

Previously, Minicuri had only $66,357 in live tournament winnings. He started playing poker in 2014 after some co-workers asked him to play in a tournament. That Platinum Pasas turned into a nice vacation and a nice six-figure score.

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Greenwood takes down Super High Roller

In other action, Sam Greenwood took down the $250,000 Super High Roller for $3.3 million. The Canadian topped a field of 39 entries for the biggest win of his career.

“I’m feeling really tired but really happy,” Greenwood said after the win.

The 34-year-old from Toronto now has almost $30 million in live tournament winnings. Greenwood was second in chips when the final of eight resumed on Thursday.

Eliminating ∫ in sixth place and Artur Martirosian in fifth added to his stack and he kept building.

At heads-up play, France’s Jean-Noel Thorel held a small chip lead, but Greenwood eventually turned the tables for the win. Here’s a look at the final payouts.

PCA $250,000 Super High Roller

  1. Sam Greenwood, Canada – $3,276,760
  2. Jean-Noel Thorel, France – $2,137,100
  3. David Yan, New Zealand – $1,472,200
  4. Byron Kaverman, United States – $1,092,300
  5. Artur Martirosian, Russia – $854,800
  6. Justin Bonomo, United States – $664,900

* Photos courtesy PokerStars/Joe Giron/Tomas Stacha

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PCA Update: Final Numbers in With PokerStars Championship Winner Grabbing $4.1 Million

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) rolled on Wednesday with final numbers coming in for the PokerStars Players Championship.

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) rolled on Wednesday with final numbers coming in for the PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Players Championship (PSPC) in the Bahamas.

Tournament organizers announced that the winner would walk away with $4.1 million. Tuesday’s action ended with Krasimir Yankov (pictured in lead image courtesy PokerStars/Joe Giron) as chip leader and 255 players remaining.

Plenty of big names also remain in the field including Jeremy Ausmus, Jonathan Jaffe, Tommy Nguyen, Daniel Dvoress, Chris Moorman, Tony Tran, Sam Grafton, Sean Winter, and Arlie Shaban.

Here’s a quick look at some of the action from the Bahamas on Day 2 and 3.

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PokerStars announces final PSPC numbers

This year’s PSPC winner will once again walk away with life-changing money. Tournament officials announced Tuesday that the event brought in 1,014 entries for a $24.8 million prize pool. That includes more than 400 Platinum Pass winners. 

The top 175 places will be paid with the champion walking away with $4.1 million. That’s a drop of $1 million from the 2019 total, but an impressive figure nonetheless.

The runner-up scores $2.5 million with all players in the top six places bagging at least $1 million. A min-cash is worth $35,100.

Yankov, of Bulgaria, has $2.2 million in live tournament winnings. He recently finished 11th in the World Poker Tour World Championship for $338,500.

By mid-afternoon on Wednesday, Brazil’s Philipe Pizzari moved into the chip lead but several players, including Yankov, hovered around the 1-million chip mark. Ausmus stayed among the top 10 as well. Jaffe also continued riding a nice wave among the chip leaders.

PokerStars Platinum Pass winners shine among Day 3 chip leaders

Along with big-name pros still in the field, several Platinum Pass winners also continued a march toward reaching the money on Wednesday. Spain’s Omar Del Pino was one of those still alive and sat among the top five on Wednesday afternoon.

He won his pass via the Platinum Grind competition. He’s also one of only seven players to win  a pass in 2019 and also for this year’s event. The first came after winning the PSF Marbella Main Event for €179,000 along with the prestigious prize. An even deeper run could certainly make for quite a story for this Spanish grinder.

Omar del Pino battling in the PSPC. He was one of several Platinum Pass winners still in the event on Day 3. (Photo courtesy PokerStars/Eloy Cabacas)

Another Platinum Pass winner sat in the top 10. France’s Renato Minicuci won his spot in the field via a PokerStars Spin & Go freeroll promotion.

Minicuri has $66,357 in live tournament winnings and would make for quite a story as well if he can keep the mojo going. His biggest finish came in 2019, when he finished runner-up in a €330 event in a European Poker Tour Monte Carlo for $19,143.

The 43-year-old began playing poker in 2014 after some co-workers asked him to play in a tournament. He’s now got a chance to really make that freeroll win pay off with a 100% return on investment.

Bad beat sends German star packing

The final hand of the night at the secondary feature table saw Germany’s Christian Rudolph suffer a bad beat and hit the exit door. This hasn’t been the only bad beat of the series obviously, but stood out as a top pro hit the rail.

Rudolph has more than $5.4 million in live tournament winnings including wins on numerous tours. He also has numerous major wins in the online poker realm as well.

That included winning the World Series of Poker Online Main Event in 2020 for $1.8 million.

Rudolph has already scored a third-place finish in the $1,100 PCA No Limit Hold’em event for $38,950. But on Tuesday his tournament life came to a close in the PSPC after his A♥K♥ was bested by Sam Grafton’s A♣J♥.

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Locked in an Apartment: Arlie Shaban Talks Streaming, PSPC, and Ontario Online Poker

Arlie Shaban spoke with PokerScout at the PokerStars Players Championship about his unique start as a streamer and online poker in Ontario.

When PokerStars Canada ambassador Arlie Shaban decided he wanted to stream his play, just setting up a Twitch channel wouldn’t do. The poker player from Toronto, Ontario, sought to make a real splash. He figured to really build an audience, pulling off a major accomplishment might create some buzz.

Shaban has an obsessive personality and says he’d studied Twitch poker for years before even launching his own channel. He wanted to learn what viewers liked most and that seemed to be some kind of challenge.

So when the time came to start his own channel in November 2017, Shaban settled on a streaming 50 days in a row for an average of eight hours a day. He also had some extra plans behind the scenes.

“Guys, you think I’m actually going to stop on day 50?” he said during the stream when the 50th day finally came. “I’m just getting warmed up. We’re going to go for 100 days.”

That still wasn’t enough. When the 100th day rolled around, Shaban announced he wanted to finish at a nice round number of 1,000 hours streamed. That meant he finally wrapped up the challenge after 125 straight days of streaming.

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“That really set me apart from everyone,” he says.

The natural question someone might ask is: how did Shaban have so much time to accomplish the challenge?

“I moved to a city where I didn’t know anyone and locked myself in an apartment to become a full time poker player, because I have that tenacity that other people don’t have,” he says. “It was worth the sacrifice.”

Shaban is now part of Team PokerStars and was still alive on Day 3 of the PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Players Championship (PSPC). He spoke with PokerScout about the event, streaming, and recent online poker changes in Canada.

From ‘Big Brother’ to online poker streaming

Fans of reality television in Canada may remember Shaban from Big Brother Canada in 2014. Fellow poker pro Kevin Martin appeared on the show the following season and the two met and became friends.

Shaban had played poker for a long time, but knew Martin was much better. Seven years ago, an inquiry into Martin’s playing habits turned things around for Shaban. That ultimately led to a career at the table and in poker content creation.

“I played millions of hands of poker as a recreational player and just asked him, ‘How are you so good? I’ve played more hands of poker than you, but you’re way better than me,’” he remembers of the conversation. “And he was like, ‘Well what are you doing off the felt to improve your game?’

“He just taught me what a training program was for poker. I went onto a training program for the first time and I just obsessed over it. It was like taking a course in university for poker. That’s how I looked at it. And that one year of studying really hard turned me into a full time player.”

That came with his complete launch into Twitch streaming as well. The transition has been great so far, he says, and the platform is perfect for his personality. When behind the microphone, viewers can expect plenty of jokes and laughs with poker mixed in.

“I don’t mind being behind the camera,” he says. “I’m an extrovert. I like the idea of trying to entertain or create content.”

Embracing online poker changes in Ontario

AS  Canadian player in Ontario, Shaban has seen the province transition from a wide open online poker market to a ringed-in environment as seen in some American states.

That presented some real changes to his daily poker grind and life as a streamer. However, Shaban’s taken the change in stride and has actually found some positives to that approach.

“ I didn’t know what it was going to be like obviously going into it,” he says. “I was super scared and thought I might have to move out of Ontario. But it actually turned out to be a blessing in disguise. All the top pros from around the world are gone out of my field now.

“And the fields are much smaller, guarantees are smaller, prize pools are smaller, but (I’ve had) a lot more consistent wins.”

Arlie Shaban battling on Day 1 at the PSPC in the Bahamas. (photos courtesy PokerStars/Manuel Kovsca).

Streaming has also benefited from the changes as well. He may have lost a few global viewers, but seen a surge of Ontario Twitch users check out his channel. Finding more success because of a smaller market has also helped.

“With so many more final table appearances and first places because of the smaller fields, that just draws in extra crowds once you get to the final table,” he says. “So even though I’m not playing for as much on top, it’s still pretty exciting for the viewers.”

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At the PSPC, Shaban returned for Day 2 and was among the chip leaders early in the day.

“It’s an amazing event,” he says. “The structure is perfect. I love this 12 o’clock start time and I don’t know how I did it, but I bagged eighth in chips yesterday.”

Can Shaban’s self-described “obsessive personality” pay off in the Bahamas as it did with the streaming challenge? That remains to be seen, but this former reality show contestant is hoping for another big appearance.

PCA Update: Chris Moorman, Tony Tran Lead PSPC; PCA Main Event & More Winners

Chris Moorman and Tony Tran led the field after the first day of action in the PokerStars No Limit Players Championship in the Bahamas.

After months of hype, promotion, and hundreds of Platinum Passes awarded, the PokerStars No Limit Hold’em Players Championship kicked off on Monday in the Bahamas as part of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA).

The event drew 1,003 players on Day 1, including more than 400 Platinum Pass winners. Players can still register on Day 2 as well, so the player pool should swell even more.

When the action concluded Monday, Chris Moorman and Tony Tran ended as chip leaders, both with 356,000 chips.

“I feel awesome, cool and relaxed,” Tran told USPoker . “I’ve never cashed in a $25,000 event, but I’ve only played in two other $25,000 events prior to this one.”

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Tran, Moorman lead the field in PSPC

The PSPC has been months in the making, actually longer when considering a COVID break. What originally had been planned for Barcelona, ​​Spain , in 2021, was eventually moved back to the Bahamas . That included the revival of the PCA.

So far, players seem pleased with the tropical poker vibes and return to the PSPC action. PokerScout is at the event and speaking with players throughout the week.

Like Tran, Moorman (pictured in lead image courtesy PokerStars/Manuel Kovsca) was pleased with his run through the tournament. At one point he’d been down to only three 5,000 chips but was able to find a big bag by the time the day’s action concluded.

“Rolled back the years and bagged the chip lead for Day 1 of the PSPC,” he noted on Twitter.

Some of the other players returning for Day 2 include Josh Arieh, Martin Zamani, Canadian PokerStars ambassador and streamer Arlie Shaban, three-time WPT champion Eric Afriat, Dario Sammartino, Sean Winter, Fedor Holz, Jeremy Ausmus.

Ramon Colillas, winner of the 2019 PSPC, also is back for the second day of action. He described Day 1 as a bit difficult but was looking to rebound.

Michel Dattani takes down  PCA Main Event

The PSPS obviously wasn’t the only major event of the series. The $10,000 PCA Main Event played out over the last week with Portugal’s Michel Dattani taking the title for $1.3 million. 

The event saw 889 entries from 58 countries, producing a prize pool of $8.6million. This became Dattani’s first major tournament win and he now has total live tournament winnings of $2.4 million.

“I’ve played 40 main events and I’ve never passed Day 3,” he said, “So it’s hard to believe I’m here right now.”

Fellow Portuguese player Pedro Neves finished runner-up for $1.2 million after the two players reached a deal. Getting to the title didn’t come without some struggles and six long days of action.

“The competition was tough,” he said afterward. “My opponents were very good. But I think I played well and the cards helped a lot. We need to run good to win these kinds of things!”

Here’s a look at the final table payouts.

2023 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event

  1. Michel Dattani, Portugal – $1,316,963
  2. Pedro Neves, Portugal – $1,183,037
  3. Artur Martirosian, Russia – $677,400
  4. Alexandre Raymond, Canada – $519,600
  5. Christoph Csik, United States – $399,800
  6. Jamil Wakil, Canada – $307,500

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A look at some other event winners

The winners keep coming at the PCA including several major recent events. That included the $10,200 PSPC Warm Up, with American Jesse Lonis scoring the victory for $367,400. The event produced a field of 162 entries for a $1.6 million prize pool.

In the $10,200 Mystery Bounty, Canada’s Andrew Chen secured a nice title and $144,800. This marked his third cash of the series.

In the $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Freezeout, Germany’s Christian Dressler found the win for $46,880. Argentina’s Nicolas Betbese Pueta took the title in the $1,100 DeepStack for $74,980.

PCA Update: Bubble Bursts in Main Event, BSOP Winner, Strange KO, & More PokerStars Platinum Passes

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure rolled on in the Bahamas this week with plenty of big names still alive in the $10,300 Main Event.

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure rolled on in the Bahamas this week with plenty of big names still alive in the $10,300 Main Event. The winner scores a seven-figure payday and a huge bullet point for the poker resumé.

Some of those still alive in the series include Nick Petrangelo, Chad Eveslage, Justin Bonomo, and Ramon Colillas. More players also found wins in side events over the last couple days.

One “unique” bust out made some news from the Main Event. Here’s a complete look at some of the recent action.

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PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event bubble bursts; massive payout for winner

Players celebrated reaching the money in the $10,300 PCA Main Event on Thursday. The bubble burst just after 3 pm and all 127 players remaining earned at least a min-cash of $17,600.

The tournament brought in 889 players for an $8.6 million prize pool and just 54 players remain. The winner walks away with a payday of $1.5 million and the runner-up grabs $1 million.

Spain’s Sergi Reixach led the players returning for Day 4 on Friday with 1.7 million. Reixach has $82 million in live tournament winnings and is looking to add more to that with a deeper run.

In 2021, Reixach was singled out as a member of Bryn Kenney’s online poker stable and faced allegations of collusion. He denied many of the allegations but admitted to “making some mistakes.”

Christoph Csik returns in second with 1.4 million and Michael Rocco in third with 1.3 million. Other players still alive include Anton Wigg, Giuseppe Pantaleo, Nick Petrangelo, Chad Eveslage, Chris Brewer, Jonathan Little, Justin Bonomo, Jesse Lonis, Steve O’Dwyer, Dylan Linde, and Anthony Hu.

PokerStars ambassador and winner of the first PokerStars Players Championship, Ramon Colillas, also remains in the hunt with 437,000.

Author and part-time poker player Maria Konnikova also is hoping her deep run in the tournament continues. She returns to the action with 312,000.


A look at other winners

The Main Event hasn’t been the only tournament underway at the PCA. The $1,100 Brazilian Series of Poker Main Event also played a major role in this series.

The tournament saw a field of 460 entries for a prize pool of $446,200. Canada’s Allan Barnes took the top spot for $86,650. This becomes the biggest score of his poker career and he now has $175,822 in live tournament winnings. Spain’s Vicente Delgado finished runner-up for $54,550 with Germany’s Christian Rudolph grabbing third for $38,950.

Jonathan Little, of the United States, finished fourth for $29,950. This highest-finishing Brazilian was Brunno Botteon , who took fifth for $23,050.

The $50,000 No Limit Hold’em Six-Handed also concluded with New Zealand’s David Yan collecting $485,690 for first. The win came after a deal with runner-up Orpen Kisacikoglu, of Turkey, who took home $458,058. The high roller action saw 31 entries for a $1.7 million prize pool.

In the $2,100 Hyper Turbo Knockout, Tommy Wang found the winner’s circle for $20,040. Hormando Vaca Diez Jimenez, of Bolivia, took the win in the $1,050 Hyper Turbo KO Freezeout for $9,540.

Bizarre bust out from ‘Poker Bunny’

One of the more interesting events over the last couple days was the bust out of Paulina “Poker Bunny” Loeliger. She called off her poker life in the Main Event on the river with a pair of threes.

When Daniel De Souza showed three of kind, Loeliger attempted to send her hand to the muck. But she didn’t want her cards revealed and tussled with the dealer to keep it that way.

All cards are revealed when a player is all in and the dealer was able to eventually turn the cards up. The interesting hand generated quite a bit of buzz on social media. Poker pro Chance Kornuth was right behind the table and took the entire scenario.

“I had a front row seat for the Poker Bunny bust out – not wanting to show down or muck when you lose an all-in happens fairly frequently to high stakes regs, myself included,” he noted on Twitter. “What doesn’t often happen is an arm wrestling match with the dealer for the mucked hand.”

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More Platinum Passes up for grabs in Bahamas

It seemed PokerStars had already dished out all the Platinum Passes up for grabs but apparently saved some for the PCA. The company announced on Thursday that some reserve passes are being added to other PCA tournament prize pools as well.

That included the $3,000 Mystery Bounty tournament that kicked off Thursday. The prize is now included as a bounty. Since players are already in the Bahamas, players will receive a cash prize as well as a $25,000 entry into the PSPC.

Stars is also offering several $300 and $600 step qualifiers for passes along with $30 and $60 Crazy Pineapple flips.

★★★ Ready to get in the action at PokerStars? Click here for a complete site review with exclusive PokerScout bonus offers. ★★★

MicroMillions coming to PokerStars Players in Southern Europe, Italy With €5 Million Guaranteed

PokerStars announced this week that the MicroMillions series returns for players in Southern Europe and Italy from Jan. 29 – Feb. 12.

Online poker players in Europe are in store for some low stakes PokerStars action in the coming weeks. The company announced the MicroMillions series returns for players in Southern Europe and Italy from Jan. 29 – Feb. 12.

Players can expect more than €5.4 million in guaranteed prizes between the two series. Stars operates a combined platform in southern Europe (Spain, France, and Portugal).

The company also runs a ringed-in platform for Italian players as well. Here’s a look at the MicroMillions action and what to expect.

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PokerStars MicroMillions highlights

This year’s MicroMillions festival in southern Europe features 159 events. The schedule includes €2.8 million guaranteed with buy-ins ranging from €1 to €100.

The action is highlighted by the €50 Main Event on Feb. 12 with €300,000 guaranteed. Other key tournaments include:

  • €30 Sunday Slam – Feb. 5, €100,00 guaranteed
  • €10 Classic PKO (progressive knockout) – Jan. 29, €50,000 guaranteed

Players can qualify for the series via satellites that start at €0.50. Qualifiers for the €50 Main Event start at just €1. Here’s a look at the complete schedule

2023 PokerStars MicroMillions Southern Europe

Jan. 291€ 30Deep PKO 8-Max€ 40,0005
Jan. 292€ 10Deep PKO 8-Max€ 30,0005
Jan. 293€ 5Giga Stack€ 12,5005
Jan. 294€ 20Total KO 6-Max€ 17,5005
Jan. 295€ 2Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 5,0005
Jan. 296€ 5Ultra KO 6-Max€ 12,5005
Jan. 297€ 10The Classic PKO€ 50,00010
Jan. 298€ 30Sunday Slam€ 75,0005
Jan. 299€ 50High Roller 6-Max - 2 Day€ 60,0004
Jan. 2910€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 25,0005
Jan. 2911€ 5Bounty Hero€ 7,5005
Jan. 2912€ 30The Veteran€ 12,5005
Jan. 2913€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 17,5005
Jan. 3014€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max€ 12,5005
Jan. 3015€ 5Total KO 8-Max€ 7,5005
Jan. 3016€ 10Giga Stack 6-Max€ 15,0005
Jan. 3017€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Jan. 3018€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 25,0005
Jan. 3019€ 50High Roller Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 40,0004
Jan. 3020€ 2Bubble Rush€ 3,0005
Jan. 3021€ 10PLO PKO 6-Max€ 5,0005
Jan. 3022€ 10Alternating Blinds PKO Turbo€ 12,5005
Jan. 3023€ 20Ultra KO 6-Max Turbo€ 15,0005
Jan. 3124€ 20Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 15,0005
Jan. 3125€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max€ 15,0005
Jan. 3126€ 5Bankroll Booster€ 10,0005
Jan. 3127€ 2Micro Dream€ 3,0005
Jan. 3128€ 30Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 35,0005
Jan. 3129€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Jan. 3130€ 10Giga Stack 6-Max€ 15,0005
Jan. 3131€ 3Bounty Hero€ 7,5005
Jan. 3132€ 20Total KO 8-Max Turbo€ 15,0005
Jan. 3133€ 10The Sophomore€ 5,0005
Feb. 134€ 5Ultra KO 6-Max€ 7,5005
Feb. 135€ 20Colossal 20€ 17,5005
Feb. 136€ 5Bounty Hero€ 10,0005
Feb. 137€ 10Total KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 138€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 25,0005
Feb. 139€ 5The Rookie€ 5,0005
Feb. 140€ 10The Sophomore€ 10,0005
Feb. 141€ 2Giga Stack PKO 8-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 142€ 10The Sophomore€ 7,5005
Feb. 143€ 20PLO PKO 6-Max Turbo€ 5,0005
Feb. 144€ 30Total KO 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 145€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 246€ 10PLO PKO 6-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 247€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Feb. 248€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 249€ 50High Roller Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 35,0004
Feb. 250€ 20Colossal 20€ 12,5005
Feb. 251€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 252€ 5Giga Stack PKO 8-Max Turbo€ 7,5005
Feb. 253€ 30Bounty Hero 6-Max Turbo€ 17,5005
Feb. 354€ 10Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 12,5005
Feb. 355€ 30Total KO 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 356€ 5Giga Stack PKO€ 10,0005
Feb. 357€ 5PLO 6-Max€ 3,0005
Feb. 358€ 10The Sophomore€ 10,0005
Feb. 359€ 20Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 360€ 5Total KO 8-Max€ 7,5005
Feb. 361€ 10The Sophomore€ 7,5005
Feb. 362€ 20Alternating Blinds PKO Turbo€ 12,5005
Feb. 363€ 1Bounty Hero 6-Max Turbo€ 2,0005
Feb. 464€ 10Giga Stack PKO€ 10,0005
Feb. 465€ 20Ultra KO 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 466€ 5Bankroll Booster€ 5,0005
Feb. 467€ 30Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 17,5005
Feb. 468€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 17,5005
Feb. 469€ 20Colossal 20€ 5,0005
Feb. 470€ 5The Rookie€ 5,0005
Feb. 471€ 20Bounty Hero€ 12,5005
Feb. 472€ 3Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 5,0005
Feb. 473€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max Turbo€ 10,0005
Feb. 574€ 30Deep PKO 8-Max€ 40,0005
Feb. 575€ 10Deep PKO 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 576€ 5Giga Stack€ 10,0005
Feb. 577€ 20Total KO 6-Max€ 17,5005
Feb. 578€ 2Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 579€ 5Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 580€ 10The Classic PKO€ 50,00010
Feb. 581€ 30Sunday Slam€ 100,0005
Feb. 582€ 50High Roller Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 60,0001
Feb. 583€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 584€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Feb. 585€ 30The Veteran€ 15,0005
Feb. 586€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 20,0005
Feb. 687€ 5Giga Stack PKO€ 7,5005
Feb. 688€ 10Total KO 8-Max€ 12,5005
Feb. 689€ 20Giga Stack 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 690€ 10The Sophomore€ 10,0005
Feb. 691€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 692€ 50High Roller Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 40,0004
Feb. 693€ 5Bubble Rush€ 7,5005
Feb. 694€ 10PLO PKO 6-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 695€ 5Alternating Blinds PKO Turbo€ 10,0005
Feb. 696€ 30Ultra KO 6-Max Turbo€ 20,0005
Feb. 797€ 5Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 7,5005
Feb. 798€ 2Ultra KO 6-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 799€ 10The Sophomore€ 10,0005
Feb. 7100€ 2Micro Dream€ 3,0005
Feb. 7101€ 10Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 7102€ 5The Rookie€ 5,0005
Feb. 7103€ 30Giga Stack 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 7104€ 10Bounty Hero€ 12,5005
Feb. 7105€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 12,5005
Feb. 7106€ 20Total KO 6-Max Turbo€ 5,0005
Feb. 8107€ 20Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 8108€ 30The Veteran€ 15,0005
Feb. 8109€ 5Bounty Hero€ 7,5005
Feb. 8110€ 1Total KO 6-Max€ 2,0005
Feb. 8111€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 25,0005
Feb. 8112€ 10The Sophomore€ 7,5005
Feb. 8113€ 5The Rookie€ 5,0005
Feb. 8114€ 10Giga Stack PKO 8-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 8115€ 10The Sophomore€ 7,5005
Feb. 8116€ 30PLO PKO 6-Max Turbo€ 5,0005
Feb. 9117€ 10Giga Stack PKO€ 12,5005
Feb. 9118€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 25,0005
Feb. 9119€ 5PLO PKO 6-Max€ 4,0005
Feb. 9120€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Feb. 9121€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 9122€ 50High Roller Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 25,0004
Feb. 9123€ 1Bounty Hero€ 2,0005
Feb. 9124€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 9125€ 30Giga Stack PKO 8-Max Turbo€ 15,0005
Feb. 9126€ 10Bounty Hero 6-Max Turbo€ 12,5005
Feb. 10127€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 10128€ 30Total KO 6-Max€ 15,0005
Feb. 10129€ 3Giga Stack PKO€ 7,5005
Feb. 10130€ 5PLO 6-Max€ 2,0005
Feb. 10131€ 10The Sophomore€ 7,5005
Feb. 10132€ 20Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 25,0005
Feb. 10133€ 5Total KO 8-Max€ 7,5005
Feb. 10134€ 10Giga Stack PKO€ 10,0005
Feb. 10135€ 20Alternating Blinds PKO Turbo€ 12,5005
Feb. 10136€ 5Bounty Hero 6-Max Turbo€ 7,5005
Feb. 11137€ 5Total KO 6-Max€ 7,5005
Feb. 11138€ 20Ultra KO 6-Max€ 17,5005
Feb. 11139€ 3Bankroll Booster€ 5,0005
Feb. 11140€ 30Bounty Hero 6-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 11141€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 20,0005
Feb. 11142€ 20Colossal 20€ 5,0005
Feb. 11143€ 5The Rookie€ 5,0005
Feb. 11144€ 20Bounty Hero€ 15,0005
Feb. 11145€ 5Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 7,5005
Feb. 11146€ 10Ultra KO 6-Max Turbo€ 10,0005
Feb. 12147€ 30Deep PKO 8-Max€ 40,0005
Feb. 12148€ 10Deep PKO 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 12149€ 5Giga Stack€ 10,0005
Feb. 12150€ 20Total KO 6-Max€ 17,5005
Feb. 12151€ 2Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 5,0005
Feb. 12152€ 5Ultra KO 6-Max€ 10,0005
Feb. 12153€ 10The Classic PKO€ 50,00010
Feb. 12154€ 50Main Event PKO 6-Max€ 300,0004
Feb. 12155€ 100Super High Roller 6-Max - 2 Day€ 75,0004
Feb. 12156€ 20Bounty Hero 8-Max€ 30,0005
Feb. 12157€ 5The Rookie€ 7,5005
Feb. 12158€ 30The Veteran€ 12,5005
Feb. 12159€ 10Bounty Hero 8-Max Turbo€ 20,0005
€ 2,811,500

A look at the Italian PokerStars series

Players in Italy are also in store for some nice MicroMillions action. The festival runs over the same dates as in southern Europe with 134 events across the series

Players will find over €2.6 million in guarantees with buy-ins ranging from €1 to €75. Some of the highlights on the schedule include:

  • 20 buy-in Main Event – Feb. 12, 150,000 guaranteed
  • 10 buy-in Monday Jackpot – Jan. 30, 70,000 guaranteed

The Italian PokerStars community can qualify for the series via satellites starting at just €0.50. Here’s a look at the complete series.

2023 PokerStars MicroMillions Italy

DateEventBuy-in (€)Guarantee (€)PKO?
Jan. 29145000N
Jan. 29211000N
Jan. 2932025000N
Jan. 294520000Y
Jan. 2951040000Y
Jan. 29624000Y
Jan. 29775100000Y
Jan. 2982030000Y
Jan. 2991012500Y
Jan. 29102015000Y
Jan. 291155000Y
Jan. 301244000N
Jan. 30132025000N
Jan. 30145075000Y
Jan. 3015515000Y
Jan. 301624000Y
Jan. 30171070000Y
Jan. 30182030000Y
Jan. 30191012500Y
Jan. 302054000Y
Jan. 312144000N
Jan. 31222025000N
Jan. 3123515000Y
Jan. 312424000Y
Jan. 31251030000Y
Jan. 31262025000Y
Jan. 31271012500Y
Jan. 312854000Y
Feb. 12944000N
Feb. 1302020000N
Feb. 131512500Y
Feb. 13224000Y
Feb. 1331030000Y
Feb. 1342025000Y
Feb. 1351010000Y
Feb. 13654000Y
Feb. 23744000N
Feb. 2382025000N
Feb. 2395060000Y
Feb. 240515000Y
Feb. 24124000Y
Feb. 2421035000Y
Feb. 2432030000Y
Feb. 2441012500Y
Feb. 24554000Y
Feb. 34644000N
Feb. 3472025000N
Feb. 348515000Y
Feb. 34924000Y
Feb. 3501030000Y
Feb. 3512025000Y
Feb. 3521012500Y
Feb. 35354000Y
Feb. 45444000N
Feb. 4552020000N
Feb. 456512500Y
Feb. 45724000Y
Feb. 4581030000Y
Feb. 4592025000Y
Feb. 4601010000Y
Feb. 46154000Y
Feb. 56245000N
Feb. 56311000N
Feb. 5642025000N
Feb. 565520000Y
Feb. 5661040000Y
Feb. 56724000Y
Feb. 56875100000Y
Feb. 5692030000Y
Feb. 5701012500Y
Feb. 5712015000Y
Feb. 57255000Y
Feb. 67344000N
Feb. 6742020000N
Feb. 6755075000Y
Feb. 676515000Y
Feb. 67724000Y
Feb. 6781030000Y
Feb. 6792030000Y
Feb. 6801012500Y
Feb. 68154000Y
Feb. 78244000N
Feb. 7832020000N
Feb. 784515000Y
Feb. 78524000Y
Feb. 7861030000Y
Feb. 7872025000Y
Feb. 7881012500Y
Feb. 78954000Y
Feb. 89044000N
Feb. 8912020000N
Feb. 892512500Y
Feb. 89324000Y
Feb. 8941030000Y
Feb. 8952025000Y
Feb. 8961010000Y
Feb. 89754000Y
Feb. 99844000N
Feb. 9992025000N
Feb. 91005060000Y
Feb. 9101515000Y
Feb. 910224000Y
Feb. 91031035000Y
Feb. 91042030000Y
Feb. 91051012500Y
Feb. 910654000Y
Feb. 1010744000N
Feb. 101082025000N
Feb. 10109515000Y
Feb. 1011024000Y
Feb. 101111030000Y
Feb. 101122025000Y
Feb. 101131012500Y
Feb. 1011454000Y
Feb. 1111544000N
Feb. 111162020000N
Feb. 11117512500Y
Feb. 1111824000Y
Feb. 111191030000Y
Feb. 111202025000Y
Feb. 111211010000Y
Feb. 1112254000Y
Feb. 1212345000N
Feb. 1212411000N
Feb. 121252025000N
Feb. 12126520000Y
Feb. 121271040000Y
Feb. 1212824000Y
Feb. 1212975100000Y
Feb. 1213020150000Y
Feb. 121311012500Y
Feb. 121322015000Y
Feb. 1213355000Y

★★★ Ready to get in the action at PokerStars? Click here for a complete site review with exclusive PokerScout bonus offers. ★★★

PCA UPDATE: PokerStars Launches PCA Online; Isaac Haxton Highlights Bahamas Winners So Far

PokerStars announced on Tuesday that the Mini PCA series is coming to the online felt starting today and running through Feb. 3.

The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) is now underway with the PokerStars Players Championship (PSPC) a major part of the action. Online poker players who can’t make it to the Bahamas can still get in on the virtual action.

Stars announced on Tuesday that the Mini PCA series is coming to the online felt starting today and running through Feb. 3. The series runs alongside the 10 days of PokerStars live coverage from the Bahamas.

The PCA also has declared some winners already in early action. That includes Isaac Haxton chalking up a seven-figure victory. Here’s a preview of the Mini PCA as well as a look at some of the action from the Bahamas so far.

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What to expect from PokerStars Mini PCA

In the Mini PCA, players will find 30 tournaments with three low buy-in tournaments per day. Price points start at just $1.10 and the festival includes tens of thousands of dollars in added value. 

The $55 Mini PCA Main Event highlights the series on Jan. 29, awarding a European Poker Tour Monte Carlo package to the winner. There is something for every level of player. PokerStars is hoping to offer the next best thing to being at the actual PCA in the Bahamas.

Beyond the Main Event, players will find even more major tournament action. The live PSPC is one of the biggest events on the poker calendar this year and Stars is bringing a version to the online felt as well.

The $25 Mini PSPC gets underway on Jan. 30 with $10,000 added to the prize pool. The tournament follows the same five-day format as the PSPC and utilizes a similar structure.

PokerStars is throwing in another nice reward for players competing in the Mini PCA. EPT satellite tickets are also added to the prize pool of every tournament. This adds a bit more to play for throughout the series. Here’s a look at the complete schedule.

2023 PokerStars Mini PCA

DateEventBuy-in ($)NameStarting stack
Jan. 2512.20Deep Stack - Single Re-Entry50000
Jan. 25211.00Unlimited Re-Entry - 7-max30000
Jan. 2531.10Hyper-Turbo PKO Freezeout20000
Jan. 2645.508-Game50000
Jan. 26555.00NLHE - High Roller Unlimited Re-Entry150000
Jan. 2663.30Hyper-Turbo Freezeout20000
Jan. 2771.10PL Omaha50000
Jan. 2782.20Deep Stack, Single Re-Entry50000
Jan. 27925.008-Max NLHE Unlimited Re-Entry30000
Jan. 28101.10Deep Stack50000
Jan. 281111.00Mini PSPC Warm-Up60000
Jan. 28122.20Hyper-Turbo Freezeout20000
Jan. 29135.50Deep Stack - Unlimited Re-Entry50000
Jan. 291455.00Mini PCA Main Event, Single Re-Entry30000
Jan. 291511.009-max - PKO Freezeout30000
Jan. 301611.00Deep Stack - 3 Re-Entry50000
Jan. 301725.00Mini PSPC - Day 160000
Jan. 30185.50Heads-Up Total KO30000
Jan. 31193.30Deep Stack - Single Re-Entry50000
Jan. 312025.00Mini PSPC - Day 260000
Jan. 312125.008-Max NLHE Unlimited Re-Entry PKO30000
Jan. 31225.506-Max NLHE Turbo30000
Feb. 12311.00Deep Stack - Unlimited Re-Entry50000
Feb. 1242.20HORSE50000
Feb. 12525.00Mini PSPC - Day 360000
Feb. 1261.10Hyper-Turbo PKO Freezeout20000
Feb. 227109.00Super High Roller NLHE250000
Feb. 2283.30PL Omaha50000
Feb. 22925.00Mini PSPC - Day 460000
Feb. 23055.00Unlimited Re-Entry - 7-max100000
Feb. 3315.50NLHE - Unlimited Re-Entry50000
Feb. 3322.20NLHE - Unlimited Re-Entry 6-Max50000
Feb. 33325.00Mini PSPC - Day 560000
Feb. 33411.00Last Chance, Series Wrap-Up20000

Beyond the Mini PCA, Stars also recently launched the PSPC Online for American players. In the US, Stars operates a combined Michigan/New Jersey platform as well as a Pennsylvania platform. For a complete preview of that series, click here.

Isaac Haxton highlights early PCA winners

With the PCA now already underway, a few players have already earned titles. Fresh off winning the $50,000 championship event at the PokerGO Cup for $598,000, Isaac Haxton was back in action in the Bahamas this week for the first tournament of the series. The American took the title in the $100,000 Super High Roller for $1.1 million.

The win came after a deal with second- and third-place finishers Seth Davies and Adrian Mateos. Both of those players also scored just under $1.1 million. The event saw 49 total entries for a $4.8 million prize pool. Haxton was subdued in his Twitter celebration.

The $20,000 Knockout event was also one of the higher stakes events completed so far and offered players $10,000 bounties. The tournament saw 22 entries for a $424,732 prize pool. In the end, Brazil’s Tauan Naves came out on top for $87,932.

A few other events have also seen winners crowned. Here’s a look at some of those:

  • $300 No limit Hold’em Unlimited Re-Entry – Andre Moreira Marques, Brazil, $5,451 (61 entries for $17,751 prize pool)
  • $550 Seniors – Farzad Raji, United States, $11,710 (86 for entries for $41,710 prize pool)
  • $550 NLHE Single Re-Entry – Marcel Schwarz, Germany, $11,625 (85 entries for a $41,225 prize pool)

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A look at the PokerStars PCA streaming schedule

Poker fans who can’t get to the Bahamas can still check out much of the action from home, perhaps while even playing in the Mini PCA online.

Stars is streaming several tournaments throughout the series at the official PokerStars YouTube channel. That starts today with the second day of the $10,000 PCA Main Event.

James Hartigan, Joe Stapleton, Nick Walsh, Maria Ho, Griffin Benger, and Scott Baumstein will call the action throughout the series. Live streams are also available with French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German commentary. Here’s a look at all the entire streaming schedule for the series.

EventDate & time
$10,000 PCA Main Event Day 2Jan. 25, 12:30 pm (ET)
$10,000 PCA Main Event Day 3Jan. 26, 12:30 pm (ET)
$10,000 PCA Main Event Day 4Jan. 27, 12:30 pm (ET)
$10,000 PCA Main Event Day 5Jan. 28, 12:30 pm (ET)
$10,000 PCA Main Event final tableJan. 29, 1 pm (ET)
$25,000 PSPC Day 1Jan. 30, 12:30 (ET)
$25,000 PSPC Day 2Jan. 31, 12:30 (ET)
$25,000 PSPC Day 3Feb. 1, 12:30 (ET)
$25,000 PSPC Day 4Feb. 2, 12:30 (ET)
$25,000 PSPC final tableFeb. 3, 12:30 (ET)

★★★ Ready to get in the action at PokerStars? Click here for a complete site review with exclusive PokerScout bonus offers. ★★★

Final Two Platinum Passes Dished Out Via PokerStars Podcast Contest; PSPC Starts Next Week 

Alex Irwin and Asif Warris became the final PokerStars Platinum Pass winners last week after answering a podcast trivia question correctly.

It must have been quite a phone call last week for Northern Ireland’s Alex Irwin and the United Kingdom’s Asif Warris. Simply answering the phone and giving a correct answer to a trivia question earned the pair a PokerStars Platinum Pass.

The prizes came via the Poker in the Ears podcast hosts James Hartigan and Joe Stapleton. The two called listeners to determine who would win the final two Platinum Passes for the PokerStars Players Championship (PSPC). The event is set for Jan. 30 – Feb. 3 at the Baha Mar Resort in the Bahamas.

The PSPC kicks off next week as part of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA). Warris may have spoken for many winners when he learned he’d won.

“Oh my God, I love it,” he said. “I can’t believe this.”

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Winning a PokerStars Platinum Pass via podcast

To have a shot at the Platinum Pass, players simply had to listen to a recent episode and register on the Stars Discord channel. Hartigan and Stapleton then randomly called those who registered.

Show listeners who answered a trivia question correctly won the pass. Irwin was the first lucky winner after correctly answering his PSPC quiz question. He was asked the number of players making the money in the first PSPC.

Irwin answered 181 entrants of the 1,039-player field cashed in the first edition of PSPC in 2019. That scored him a $25,000 buy-in and tournament package to the Bahamas next week.

Warris, known in the poker community as “The Poker Tourist,” was the next caller. He was asked the name of the other Platinum Pass winner that joined Ramon Colillas at the final table at the first PSPC. His correct answer of Mark Rivera rewarded Warris with a Platinum Pass.

Right place at the right time

Simply being by the phone paid off in a big way for these two winners. The first caller didn’t pick up for Hartigan and Stapleton. Irwin was then the second person called and claimed his Platinum Pass. That actually turned out to be his second pass after winning one for the first event in 2019.

The third person gave a wrong answer and Warris became the fourth player. The win also brought his second pass after also winning one in 2019. He knew the answer as soon as Hartigan read the choices and pumped his fists in celebration.

Warris has won numerous tournament packages and events at PokerStars, Stapleton noted.

“You are something special Asif,” the podcast host said. “Random draws and you just seem to connect.”

Irwin was equally enthusiastic about his win, celebrating on camera with some fist pumps and yelling.

He repeatedly said: “I can’t believe it.” He later added: “I’m speechless, I can’t wait to see you and shake your hand.”

Last of the Platinum Passes awarded

The two winners secured the last Platinum Passes up for grabs. In total, more than 400 players and poker fans secured the sought-after prizes. Stars values each pass at $30,000 and includes:

  • $25,000 tournament buy-in
  • Six nights of hotel accommodations for the winner and a guest in a five-star hotel
  • Airfare and airport transfers
  • $1,900 in expense money
  • Platinum Pass Winner experiences during the event

PokerScout will be on site next week throughout the PSPC. Stay tuned here for event updates, feature stories, and player interviews.

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