CasinoCityTimes.com

Gurus
News
Newsletter
Author Home Author Archives Author Books Send to a Friend Search Articles Subscribe
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Newsletter Signup
Stay informed with the
NEW Casino City Times newsletter!
Related Links
Related News
Recent Articles
Best of Vin Narayanan

Gaming Guru

author's picture
 

Top-10 moments of the WSOP Main Event

13 July 2008

LAS VEGAS – Entering Monday's action, the Main Event at the 2008 World Series Poker was filled with special moments. Here's a look back at our 10 favorites.

Charles Barkley
10. Ante Up for Africa
In a game where the primary goal is to make as much money for yourself as possible, it's nice to see that charity still has a place. On July 2, the day before the Main Event began, celebrities and poker players alike played in the Ante Up for Africa charity tournament in order to raise money to help the Darfur region of Africa. Casino City had a chance to speak with some of the participants as they entered the event and asked each one a pair of questions:

1. What is it about poker that attracts celebrities to the game?
2. Would it be possible for a poker professional to make the crossover and become a good actor or actress?

As usual, former NBA star Charles Barkley had the funniest and most honest answer.

"I think the celebrities like to gamble. That's why they like poker. It's not brain surgery, bro. The celebrities like to gamble. They got a lot of money. We don't want to leave it for our family. We like to gamble. We don't want to leave all this money for our freeloading-ass family. Understand?"

Annette_Obrestad

9. Obrestad's confidence
At 19 years old, defending World Series of Poker Europe Main Event champion Annette Obrestad isn't old enough to play in the American WSOP. But in her mind, she's ready to take the Series by storm. "I can't wait until 2010 when I can play [at the World Series in the U.S.]," she told Casino City. "I'm going to be multi-tabling so many events at a time. I'll probably play in like 30 events. And I will win a bracelet my first year. You watch me. I'm going to do it."

Ray_Romano

8. Ray Romano on poker and golf
In classic Romano style, the funnyman talked to Casino City about what he was better at, golf or poker.

"I suck at both," said Romano said. "The difference is that in golf, I know what I'm supposed to be doing and how I'm supposed to be swinging the club, but I can't do it. Here, I really have no idea what I'm supposed to be doing and what I'm not."

Chris_moneymaker

7. Crashing the player lounges
The Casino City editorial team crashed the exclusive player lounges at the World Series of Poker last weekend. And after filling up on all the complimentary food and beverages, it filed a complete report as to what you can find in each of these exclusive areas, including Chris Moneymaker playing foozball.

Maurice_Hawkins

6. "Snack-crackled-popped all-in"
The best trash talker at the Main Event this year was Florida's Maurice Hawkins. And when Germany's Felix Osterland snapped his fingers before going all in, Hawkins response was instantaneous.

"You just snack-crackled-popped all-in," Hawkins said.

The table, including Osterland, burst out in laughter. And the two pounded fists in friendship.

griffin

5. The Chan-Griffin mutual fan club
Last Saturday night, Forest Griffin upset Quinton "Rampage" Jackson in an UFC title fight. Last Sunday, Griffin was at Johnny Chan's table playing in the World Series of Poker Main Event.

"I was there last night," Chan told Griffin. "The way you took Jackson down was amazing."

"That's why your poster is on the wall," noted Griffin as he folded a hand to Chan, noting the huge posters of each former Main Event winner that don the Amazon Ballroom.

Midway through Griffin's day, the UFC champ rivered a full house, and Chan rushed over to congratulate the fighter and pose for a picture.

Chan ended up eliminating Griffin from the tournament.

murrell

4. Michelle Murrell rubbing Hal Lubarsky's back
Hal Lubarsky suffers from retinitis pigmentosa, an eye disorder that prevents him from seeing anything more than just a few inches away from his face. Michelle Murrell is Lubarsky's card reader. And watching the two of them work together is pure magic.

She whispers the cards into his ear, reads the board for him and generally takes care of him at the table. And watching Murrell rub Lubarsky's back during a big hand is a sight most people watching the Main Event will remember for quite some time.

hellmuth_god

3. Phil Hellmuth appeals to god
When Day 4 of the World Series of Poker Main Event began Friday, Phil Hellmuth was at ESPN's featured table with 475,000 in chips. More than five hours later, and with about half as many chips, Hellmuth went into "meltdown mode" at one of the outer tables in the Amazon Room, and it provided plenty of entertainment for the fans, his fellow players at the table and the ESPN cameras that were rolling non-stop during the 20-minute diatribe.

"OK, Lord, I've passed the test," an in-rare-form Hellmuth shouted to the heavens with his hands in the air after folding another hand pre-flop. "Can I have some cards now?"

phil_hellmuth

2. Phil Hellmuth busts out
On Day 5 of the Main Event, Phil Hellmuth blew up on the last hand of the night, calling a player an "idiot" after he bluffed Hellmuth out of a pot. The WSOP then issued Hellmuth a one-round penalty, which it rescinded the next morning after an appeal from the self-proclaimed "Poker Brat." But not even the reprieve from the penalty could save Hellmuth. He busted out in 45th place Sunday afternoon.

wsop_crowd

1. Bubble bursting
This was easily the most exciting moment at the WSOP so far. The Amazon Room at the Rio All Suite Hotel & Casino was packed with fans, friends and family as players tried to make the money at the Main Event. The tournament went into hand-to-hand mode as the bubble approached, with 666th place paying $21,230 and 667 paying nothing. As all-in calls were announced, players would rush from table to table to see the action. And as the number of players dwindled toward 666, the excitement grew.

Finally, Hong Kong's Steve Chung finished in 667, one place out of the money -- and the crowd went wild. The remaining 666 players had made the money. Milwaukee's Best Light, the title sponsor of the World Series, awarded Chung a $10,000 buy-in into next year's Main Event for his near miss.

It was the kind of drama you simply don't see at events other than the World Series of Poker.

Top-10 moments of the WSOP Main Event is republished from Online.CasinoCity.com.
Related Links
Related News
Recent Articles
Best of Vin Narayanan
Vin Narayanan

Vin Narayanan is the managing editor at Casino City. When he's not writing or editing stories, he likes to play Chinese Poker, Badugi, Razz and any other "non-traditional" poker game. He also thinks blackjack is his best game and loves game theory.

Before joining Casino City, Vin covered (not all at the same time) sports, politics and elections, wars, technology, celebrities and the Census for USATODAY.com, USA WEEKEND and CNN.

A proud graduate of Michigan State University, Vin can be found on most nights and weekends trying to find a way to watch the Spartans play football or basketball.

Vin Narayanan
Vin Narayanan is the managing editor at Casino City. When he's not writing or editing stories, he likes to play Chinese Poker, Badugi, Razz and any other "non-traditional" poker game. He also thinks blackjack is his best game and loves game theory.

Before joining Casino City, Vin covered (not all at the same time) sports, politics and elections, wars, technology, celebrities and the Census for USATODAY.com, USA WEEKEND and CNN.

A proud graduate of Michigan State University, Vin can be found on most nights and weekends trying to find a way to watch the Spartans play football or basketball.