Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Event 1: Blanda Busted

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Bill Blanda recently reported to the rail when his full boat was sunk by a bigger boat.

Also gone:

James Boyd
Kelly Armentrout

 Mike Scarborough

Mike Scarborough (Cincinnati, OH) is doing well.  He has chipped up to about 350k.

Event 1: 350 Remain

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Level 15 is underway with blinds of 1,500/3,000 with 400 antes.

27 tables remain in the event center and 8 are down in the poker room, for 35 tables still in action.  That's 350 players, at most.  Average stack is almost 134k.

An announcement was made that another break will happen at the end of this level (~12:10am) in order to move the remaining poker room players up here.

Event 1: Tweet-Time

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

At the end of level 14, players were sent on a 15-minute break.  Here are some of their tweets:

sandler1860 Jerry Payne
295k on break going to 1500 3k with 400.

SugDpoker David Zeitlin
175k going to 1500-3k, ran a big semi bluff on the Han: before break.

PhilPhan99 Jonathan Rice
Break time finally...ive got 80k goin to 1500-3k. Grindin it out...420ish left and supposed to play til the 180 man bubble bursts

AdamNCook Adam Cook
96k on break, 1.5k/3k 400a next. #borgata

petegotaplan Peter Lubrano
Card dead last hour or so got 180k coming back from break at 1500/3000. #timetorunitup #WombatSlayer

Event 1: New Chip Leader

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Allen Schecter (Toms River, NJ) is chipping up in a big way.  He's up to about 420k and clearly in the lead among the 30 tables remaining in the Event Center.

 Allen Schechter

Not sure how many players or tables are still running down in the Poker Room.

Event 1: Zeitlin Zaps One

 $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

On a Queen-high flop, a short-stack got all his chips in against David Zeitlin.  The short-stack saw the bad news when the hands were tabled.  His QT was out-kicked by David's KQ. 

 David Zeitlin

No miracle came on the last two and another one bit the dust.

With that pot, David chipped up to ~110k.

Event 1: Blinds Up, Players Down

 $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Blinds are up to 1,200/2,400 with 300 antes (level 14).

Travis Greenawalt got his last chips in holding pocket 8s, but ran into pocket Tens.  No help from the board and Travis was felted.

Also gone:
Nancy Martin
Nachman Berlin
Aaron Steury
Monro Secor
Steve Ryan

Close to 530 players remain, still split between the two rooms.  Still a long way to go to reach 180 and the money.

Event 1: Cook Cooking

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Adam Cook was down to 27k and decided to come over to the media desk to get his phone, which was plugged in and charging.

Adam Cook

"I'm getting a head-start on the walk of shame" he said, anticipating an eminent bust-out.  When he returned to his table he promptly doubled up twice in back-to-back hands.

That got him up to 128k and well above average.  Just goes to show you -- it pays to visit the media!

Event 1: Johnson Jilted

 $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Austen Johnson will not be picking up his second Borgata trophy in this event. 

Austen won the $350 Deep Stack No Limit event during the 2011 Borgata Summer Poker Open ($64,734) and also won the Leaderboard Contest during that series.

He got his last chips in today on the flop holding two overs and a flush draw versus top pair, top kicker.  None of his outs materialized on the turn or river and Austen hit the rail.

Event 1: No Title Defense

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Blinds are up to 1k/2k with 300 antes for level 13.

We don't have a defending champion in the field today.  Alex Rocha (South Setauket, NY) won event 1 of the 2011 Borgata Winter Open, along with over $150,000. 

 Last year's event 1 champ Alex Rocha

Apparently he had to work today and wasn't able to play.

Event 1: Inside the Rail

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Hey everyone, unfortunately my double-up didn't happen and I'm no longer Inside the Rail, but am on the outside looking in.

After running into pocket sixes in a blind vs. blind battle, I was down to 8k (5 BB). Then I got it all in with AQ against yet again, pocket 6s. The board runs out J-J-10-J-K, but the meaningless straight on the river is trumped by my opponent's full house.

I would have loved a piece of the the $936,500 prize pool and a shot at the $165,053 first place haul, but was never able to get anything going. In the next day or so, I'll be providing a more detailed account of my experience at the Borgata Winter Poker Open.

Best of luck to all the remaining players.

Cheers, Jennifer

Jen Shahade, a writer, entrepreneur and games player who is providing her insights from Event 1. She is a two-time American Women’s Chess Champion and is a contributor to

Event 1: Gonzo

 $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Tables are breaking down fast here in the event center as players ship it, lose it, and hit the rail.

Gone from this event are:

Gordon Eng
Vinny Pahuja
Tim Vance
John Sep
John Hinds
Brian Eckstrom
Tim Faro

Event 1: Basilicata is Back

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Vincent Basilicata has two Borgata trophies at home.

He picked up his first in the Summer of 2010 in a $400 HOSE tournament.  

 Vincent Basilicata

His second came in the 2011 Winter Open, where he won the $350 No Limit event and almost $31k.

Vincent is on the far side of the event center and doing well with about 170k.

Event 1: Inside the Rail

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Writer, entrepreneur and games player Jen Shahade provides her insights from Event 1.

Hey there, I made it past the dinner break so I’ve at least earned a $10 food voucher against the $560 buy-in! weeee.

Sadly, I only have about 12 big blinds (19k) so I’m going to need a lot of luck in the next levels to make it to the end of the night. My table has been pretty fun with a lot of action though I’m obviously not happy with my stack.

Jen Shahade

It’s hard for me to say whether I missed spots in the previous level (i.e shoving a late position opener light from the blinds with an appropriate stack size) or if they just weren’t quite there. Often the truth is a mixture of the two and I feel that it’s always possible to get more precise at these things, despite the seeming simplicity of playing with relatively few blinds. I’ll go over a few specific spots after the event is over.

One of the things I love about tournament poker and the Borgata is the great community atmosphere. It’s also nice to see a lot of women in the field.

I saw many female pros at surrounding tables, including May Siu, Amanda Musumeci, Cherish Andrews, Marguerite Spagnuolo and the aforementioned Jamie Kerstetter. I even saw a table with more women than men, although at that very table a raucous argument broke out. So don’t go saying women are more “peaceful” than men!

I’ll definitely need some run good after dinner. Look for my double or bust tweets @jenshahade and be sure to follow @BorgataPoker throughout the series. Until next time, Jennifer

Play resumes with level 12 (800/1,600/200 ante).

Event 1: Playing With the Big Boys

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Table 32 is a little scary with two of the big guys, Bill Blanda and James Boyd, sitting side-by-side.

 Bill Blanda & James Boyd

"Terrorizing the table?"  I asked.  "I wish" replied James, who is sitting on a below-average stack.  Bill is doing well with an above-average stack.

Also at table 32 is WPT and WSOP title holder Paul Darden.  He's not intimidated by anyone.

Event 1: Dinner Time Tweets

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 
Thanks to all the players who took the time to tweet updates during their dinner break!  Here's a sampling:
aje221 Austen Johnson
82k at dinner. Around 800 left. Return to 200/800/1600. #teammurder

SugDpoker David Zeitlin
104k at dinner break, over half the field gone. 800-1600 in an hour.

SteveRyanPoker Steve Ryan
Dinner break finally!! 30k about going to 1500. Coming back to 20 bigs. Which at my table is healthy and manageable

PhilPhan99 Jonathan Rice
Made it to that 10 dollar voucher! 72800 going to 800-1600 after

Thelandlordd Nachman Berlin
Diner break just lost a 50k flip last hand before break still got 45k

1njpayne Anthony Payne
Dinner break 106k

BrianEckstrom Brian Eckstrom
40700. Dinner. 4 coolers back to back to back to back. Avg prob ~55

AdamNCook Adam Cook
Finally got AKhh in a perfect squeeze spot n opener had AKcc, no sweats, 27k @ dinner w/ @getinthur 800/1600 200a next.

ravensfutbal Brian Reeve
T15200 at dinner break. Was coming back on the button but found out my table broke, now UTG, run bad continues

Event 1: Dinner Time Chip Leader Declared

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

As the room cleared out for dinner, a chip leader emerged from the field (literally) and gave us the scoop.

Tony Tran (Bensalem, PA) was an alternate and made it into the tournament quite late.  He then proceeded to felt three players at his first table.  He's moved twice since then, landing at table three.

 Tony Tran

"I've just been hitting everything" he said.  As of the dinner break, Tony is up to 250k, so we're declaring him the chip leader.

Winter must be Tony's time to run good.  At last year's Borgata Winter Open, he finished second in the $300 No Limit tournament, good for $8,258.

There are 77 tables still in action, so at most there are 770 players still in the fight.  That makes the average stack almost 61k.

Event 1: Chick Parm for One

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

 No Double-up on the Menu for DeSimone

There's a mad rush out the Event Center doors and down the escalators as the field is on a one hour dinner break.  Players were restless the last 15 minutes and glad to get away from the table.

Just before the break, Steve DeSimone (East Hanover, NJ) three-bets all-in for 19k, but doesn't get any action as he shows pocket kings.  After scoping out the Fornelletto menu, DeSimone says he likes the chicken parm.

Play resumes at 8:35 pm.

Event 1: Chip Leader??

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

Lots of people have inquired about the chip leader, but there is no way to tell with the field split between rooms.

When 900 players remain, the average stack will be about 52k.

 Jerry Maher

So he may not be the chip leader, but Jerry Maher (Warren, NJ) is doing well.  He's up to ~135k.

Event 1: Vance's Aces Cracked

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Tim Vance (Milstadt, IL) is in the field today, but just took a tough beat.

He had the best pair, pocket Aces, and was up against a shorter-stack that was all-in holding AQ.  His opponent made a flush to crack those Aces and Tim shipped the double across the felt.  He was left with less than 10k (8 big blinds).

 Tim Vance

Tim made his name in the poker world in 2008 when he won the EPT Scandinavian Open, good for over $1 million.  He doesn't get to travel to live tournaments much because he has a 7-year-old daughter at home.  This is Tim's first-ever tournament at Borgata.

Event 1: More Bustage

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)
Lee Childs
UTG opens to 3500. One caller. I ship 9800 from BB w/ KK. UTG iso's to 1800. Other folds. He has A2. A flop. Really fun game sometimes. :/
matt brady
Poker being what it is my good call doesn't lead me to win the tny or anything.instead I just get to run kings into aces an hr later to bust
Josh Brikis
Didn't win a single hand..out. gl everyone still in

Event 1: 930 Remain

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Half the field has been eliminated already -- 930 players remain in the hunt for the top prize of over $165,000.

Level 11 is underway with blinds of 600/1,200 and 200 antes.  Level 11 and all subsequent levels will be 50 minutes long.

Dinner break will be at the end of this level at approximately 7:30pm until 8:30pm.

The plan for today is to play to the money (180 players) or to 2am, whichever comes last.

Event 1 Payouts

Borgata Winter Poker Open
Event 1:  $500 + $60 Deep Stack NLH
January 18-19, 2012

Entries:  1,873
Total Buy-In: $936,500

1: $165,053
2: $104,463
3: $69,311
4: $58,773
5: $48,600
6: $39,061
7: $30,432
8: $22,256
9: $15,897
10 - 12: $10,447
13 - 15: $6,813
16 - 18: $4,724
19 - 27: $3,997
28 - 36: $3,361
37 - 45: $2,861
46 - 54: $2,453
55 -63: $2,089
64 - 72: $1,817
73 - 81: $1,681
82 - 90: $1,544
91 - 100: $1,408
101 - 110: $1,363
111 - 120: $1,317
121 - 130: $1,272
131 - 140: $1,226
141 - 150: $1,181
151 - 160: $1,136
161 - 170: $1,090
171 - 180: $1,045

Event 1: Little Man Lost

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

In a multi-way pot, Mike 'Little Man' Sica held pocket 3s and had bottom set on a flop of 8 4 3 with two clubs.

The pre-flop raiser led out for 16k, two other players folded, then Mike moved all-in for 51k total.  He got called and his opponent was way behind with pocket 9s.

Unfortunately for Mike, a two-outer 9 came on the river, giving his opponent the bigger set and the pot.  Mike was relegated to the rail.

Event 1: Goners

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Play resumed after the break with level 10, blinds 500/1,000 with 100 antes.

These folks will not be returning:

Ryan Eriquezzo
Amanda Musumeci
Chris Tryba
Travis Williams
Bob Hwang

It's hard to tell how many are left with the field split between the Event Center and the Poker Room, but with over 1,800 entries, more than 600 have already busted out.

The official numbers will be announced when they are available, but it has already been announced that the final 180 players will get paid.

Event 1: Another World

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

 (l-r) Hayduk, Caruso & Payne

"We just want to make it to the final room, forget the final table," jokes Jerry Payne (Dayton, OH) who's one of 250 players still grinding in the Poker Room.  The field of more than 1,800 entries forced the Event Center overflow to the other side of the casino.

"There was class division," jokes Anthony Caruso (Medford, NJ), "all the good players are up there. They tried to find a spot for me in the basement, but they don't have poker anymore, just the black card lounge.

Payne is glad to see blog coverage as he picks up pocket aces and forces Jim Hayduk (Johnstown, PA) to fold.

"Don't go away," laughs Payne, "first time I've had them all day."

As the field shrinks the remaining players in the Poker Room will bag and tag and move to the Event Center.

Event 1: Color-Up Break Tweets

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

At the end of level 9, players were rewarded with a break while the green 25 chips were colored up.

Here are some of the tweets sent during the break:

SugDpoker David Zeitlin
1872 (!) total entries, I have a healthy 90k going to 500-1000.

aje221 Austen Johnson
66k. Returning to 100 500/1000.

JYoungpoker Jason Young
63k ------> 32k cuz I play worst than the worst

PhilPhan99 Jonathan Rice
38500 going to 500-1k. Only 3 bustouts at my table so far so ave here is low. 1873 entrants...prob should beat them all

BrianEckstrom Brian Eckstrom
83k. Break

NDGrinder Aaron Steury
72.7k 3rd break, made up for earlier's debacle by smashing an 8%er for a 70k pot

ravensfutbal Brian Reeve
T30300 going to level 10

petegotaplan Peter Lubrano
On break at 67k come back to 500/1000

JABistro John Allan Hinds
$15k at break, blinds coming back to $500/$1k. Cards would make this fun. I'm tired of trying to outplay everyone

SteveRyanPoker Steve Ryan
3rd break. Got about a starting stack still. Lots of entries over 1800. Insanity.

JenShahade Jennifer Shahade
Pretty short @borgatapoker 500k something likely to happen before dinner break #yumyum either way.

Flashgordon227 Gordon Eng
1250 ppl left from over 1800 sweet and I'm short

Event 1: Henrici Takes Out Todd

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

On a flop of Q 7 3 with two clubs, Jason Henrici moved his stack of gray 5k chips out, putting Alex Todd to the test for his tournament life. 

Alex tanked for a bit, then committed the last of his chips with A7 suited in diamonds (middle pair).  Jason had him crushed with KQ off (top pair).  

Alex needed an Ace or 7 to survive, but the last two peeled off J 8 and he was busted.

With that pot, Jason chipped up to almost 90k.

Event 1: Cut-ups Chipping Up

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Michael Shasho and his adopted son George Burns are enjoying themselves in the back of the event center.

 Michael Shasho & George Burns

George is up to ~90k and pulled another pot while I was watching.  When I inquired how he had accumulated so many chips, he told me that he has had Aces, Kings, and Queens and they all held up.

Michael is not doing too shabby, either.  He's up to about 55k.

Event 1: More Ladies

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

(l-r) Armentrout, Cannone & Feuer

Trying to keep pace with table 65 is table 3, which has it's three original ladies, but there's a catch. Taemee Feuer (New Platz, NY) started the day in the three seat and busted, but coincidentally her re-entry ticket put her back at the table in the 10 seat.

Feuer, who won a 2009 September Deep Stack ($108,000) joins two other Borgata regulars in Kelly Armentrout (Alexandria, VA) and Gina Cannone (Long Branch, NJ).

Level 9 (400/800/75) is underway.

Event 1: Stayin' Alive on 65

 $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

 Rosenblatt & Long Across from So & Brewer

Four ladies who began the day on Table 65 are still alive and well in the back of the Event Center. Borgata regulars Jennifer So (New York, NY) and Leanne Rosenblatt (Brigantine, NJ) are joined by Christine Brewer (Middletown, NJ) and Kathy Long (Reading, PA).

They're proud of the fact that they've seen a number of players come and go but that this fearsome foursome are players to be reckoned with.

So & Brewer

Event 1: Tweet-town

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

larry goldstein
Man down in level7...found JJ w/10bb but lost to QQ & AA. QQ<KK earlier to cripple...

Travis T Williams
RT : Reentry line, home of the bad beat story

Ryan Eriquezzo
Busted to a 2 outer on turn.

Steve Ryan
2nd break. Been ugly. About 18k. Can't get much goin

Event 1: Donkeys to the River

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

 "Pit Bull" Pete

Pete "Pit Bull" Gonzalez (Bronx, NY) is a colorful character and lives by one simple motto, "You can lead a horse to water, but a donkey will follow you all the way to the river!"

Gonzalez wouldn't say if he was the donkey when he busted from his first table, but proudly holds his re-entry ticket for a second go around.

Gonzalez started the day in the Poker Room and says the room is buzzing with both cash and tournament action. And, "heard the roar," when the mini bad beat jackpot hit (efforting details). But now he's waiting in line for his new seat in the Event Center.

Level 7 (250/500/50) is underway with pit bulls, donkeys and gorilla's, "oh, my!"

Event 1: Last Gasp

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Sears Staying Around

On the last hand of Level 6 (200/400/50), Nikolai Sears (Burlington, VT) says he wants to "gamble," knowing that if he busts he can still re-enter the tournament.  Sears moves all in for 16,250 from middle position, but doesn't get any action.

"It's right on the edge on whether it's right to gamble or not," say Sears as players are on a 15 minute break.

The re-entry portion of the tournament is now over, but alternates who haven't played a hand yet, still have one more level to join the field.

Event 1: Aces Rally

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Saridis Survives with Aces

Level 6 is the beginning of the end, as re-entry closes in the next 40 minutes.

Haralambos "Bobby" Saridis (Boston, MA) and an anonymous player are all-in preflop, each with ~25k in chips.

Saridis tables pocket aces against his opponent's pocket 5s, and when a 5 flops, Saridis doesn't flinch.  And he maintains that same demeanor when an ace hits the turn.  Saridis' hand finally holds as he wins the pot with the higher set and has his opponent covered.

"Scary," is all Saridis says about rallying against the set of 5s.  He now has 47k, while the other player reluctantly grabs the re-entry ticket and heads back to the registration desk.

Event 1: Inside the Rail

$500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

Jen Shahade, a writer, entrepreneur and games player who's providing her insights from Event 1.  She is a two-time American Women’s Chess Champion and is a contributor to

A look at some of her early tweets, @JenShahade, from the Borgata Winter Poker Open.

2:07 PM
@borgatapoker havent been dealt aj so many times in my life #reversedimpliedoddsFTW

2:05 PM
@borgatapoker starting stack exactly after four levels but w. a less nittystack antes up #letsgo

1:30 PM
@borgatapoker I was right got exciting v. Fast...3b cold 4b and 5b shove by wade woelfel utg...qq vs.aa v.kk k on turn and wade up to 70k

Borgata Winter Poker Open Tournament Leaderboard

Borgata Winter Poker Open Tournament Leaderboard
Win prizes for the Borgata Winter Poker Open Tournament Leaderboard promotion

How To Qualify:
By participating in any Borgata Winter Poker Open event (January 18 - February 3, 2012), players will earn points based upon Borgata’s poker tournament leaderboard formula, which takes into consideration three criteria:
  • Tournament Buy-In Amount 
  • Total Event Entries 
  • Place Finished
    Borgata Tournament Leaderboard points are calculated by multiplying the point factors from all three criteria.  The Borgata Tournament Leaderboard will be updated throughout the tournament.

    Winners will be announced Monday, February 6:
    • 1st Place: Entry into Borgata Spring Poker Open Championship event (April 2012) 
    • 2nd Place: Sony Internet tv
    • 3rd - 8th Place: Ray Ban sunglasses
    • 9th Place:  Nikon digital camera
    • 10th Place: Keurig coffee maker
    In addition, places 1 through 30 will receive an exclusive Blind Squirrel Apparel t-shirt and discount offer code.

    Event 1: Twitter-verse

    $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry) 

    Random posts from the first few hours of the tournament. Include #borgatapoker in your tweets and we'll add you to the list of players we follow throughout the Borgata Winter Poker Open.

    @BrianEckstrom Brian Eckstrom
    Borgata wpo event 1 break 36425. 1500-2k runners = good prize pool!

    @Flashgordon227 Gordon Eng
    I managed to give the tightest guy at the tbl chips it was his 2nd hand he played lol

    @Mikunbelievable Michael Dentale
    Jinx still works , tweet my stack almost out

    @ActionBobNJ Robert Hwang
    Borgata Winter Open event#1. Looks like already 1400+. Gonna be a big one.

    Event 1: Friendly Faces

    $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    There are lots of familiar faces sharing space at the same table, here are some interesting match-ups:

    Pilgrim & Linster (who busted and re-entered early in Level 4)

    Table 32
    James Boyd
    Eric Siegel

    Table 37
    Dwyte Pilgrim
    Mike Linster

    Table 40
    Lee Childs
    Ted Goldberg
    David Laufer

    Table 78
    Gordon Eng
    Larry Gold

    Players are back from a 15 minute break and Level 4 (100/200) is underway.

    Event 1: Poker Room Players

    $500 + $60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    There are about 44 tournament tables in action down in the poker room with quite a few familiar faces. I made a quick pass through the room and spotted these:

    Patricia Barsanti-Chou
    Joe Simmons
    Joe Boatright
    Sirous Jamshidi
    Phil Nieman
    Anthony Caruso
    Mike Castaldo
    Joe Brooks
    Sach Ramrahkani
    Adam Gerber
    Rick Austin
    Keith Crowder
    Ta Wey
    Mickey Woll
    Ibra Ibraimovich

    Event 1: Horror Stories

    $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    Guyana Gunning for Cohen

    Only three levels into the tournament and there are plenty of bad beats to go around.

    "I'm so angry, I want to punch somebody in the face right now," says one player we overhear lamenting how his set of aces were cracked by 9,10 suited.

    Taking her bad beat in stride is Guyana Petrossian (Brooklyn, NY), who lost more than half her stack with a  "high pocket pair," to Joe Cohen (Philadelphia, PA) who turned a straight flush.  "Just say I'm looking for revenge," Petrossian says with a smile.

    At the other end of the spectrum is a player who doubled-up early and tells his buddy, "bottom set against two pair."

    Blinds are 75/150 as players are looking forward to their first break at just after 1 pm.

    Event 1: Every Notable

    $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    This is where we normally list the Borgata regulars, big names, and interesting characters who are in the field. But, with more than 1,500 entries and a never ending registration line, it would be an injustice to highlight
    some players and leave out others who are just as worthy of mention.

    On that note, EVERYONE is a notable player and it's great to see so many familiar faces.  As the field shrinks over the next two days, we'll highlight some names that make a deep run.

    We'll start with a shout out to the players in the Poker Room and as we sift through the names,  buckle-up, enjoy the ride, and avoid those landmines!

    Event 1: Inside the Rail

    $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    Hi, I’m Jen and really excited to be here at the Borgata Winter Poker Open’s kickoff event.

    Over the next few days I'll be offering you a view from Inside the Rail, a personal account of my experience playing in Event 1, the $500k guarantee.

    I can't believe the turnout and am glad I registered last night to get a head start on this massive field!
    Jen Shahade

    A bit about me, I'm part of a group called the Grindettes and am here with my girl Jamie Kerstetter and we rushed back to play in the Winter Open after playing the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (though you can’t tell from our lack of tans).

    I'll be providing updates here on the blog and tweeting my Borgata Winter Open Adventure along the way. You can catch me from @jenshahade to @BorgataPoker so thanks for following along.

    And if you’re at my table, tell me what you’re looking forward to over the next 17 days at the Winter Open and the $2 Million Guaranteed Championship Event (Jan. 29-Feb. 3)

    And don’t three-bet me!

    Event 1: Sick Value

     $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    Rossi Revels at Turnout

    As players settle in, everyone's wondering if 2,000 entries is a real possibility.

    "I thought it would be 15 (hundred), but this could hit 19 (hundred) or more, says John Del Rossi (Mantua, NJ), who had multiple final tables at Borgata in 2011 including a 4th place finish ($6,800) in Event 6 of the Fall Open.

    "This is sick," Del Rossi adds, "I'm so excited, this is the tournament you want to win."

    The registration line is still 200 deep and players who set their over/under line at 1,500 are pleasantly surprised that the number is being blown away.

    Event 1: Riff & Roll

     $500 +$60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)

    Electricity in the Event Center

    As players take their seats, the first riff of the deck signals the official start of the 2012 Bogata Winter Poker Open!

    The starting head count of 1,350 players means the $500,000 guarantee has already been met ($675,000 prize pool and growing).   The turnout proves that not only is the structure (25k chips/40 min. levels) and the staff top notch, but that players love playing poker at Borgata.

    The Event Center has 90 tables so that means there are  40+ tables in the Poker Room and the vibe is electric.

    Re-entries are available for the first 6 levels so players looking to gamble or suffer a horrendous beat can reload and fire a second bullet.

    Blinds start at 25/50, the button is the three seat and the cards are in the air!

     Heath Hoyes (Chester Springs, PA), left, Chats with 
    Suresh Suryawanashi (Manassas, VA) as Dealer Joe Cuts the Cards

    Wednesday, January 18

    Today's Events (Event Center)

    11AM: Event 1 - $500 + $60 Deep Stack NLH (Re-Entry)
    • Players start with 25,000 in tournament chips 
    • Levels 1-10: will last 40 minutes each | Levels 11+: will last 50 minutes each 
    • Players may Re-Enter during first 6 Levels (unlimited Re-Entries) 
    • 2-Day event
    7PM: Event 29 - $100 + $30 No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)
    • Players start with 10,000 in tournament chips 
    • Levels will last 20 minutes each 
    • Players may Re-Enter during the first 6 Levels (unlimited Re-Entries)
    • 1-Day event