2006 WSOP Underway, Dealers Dealt First

The 2006 World Series of Poker is officially upon us.

Play began yesterday at the Rio as the first of the daily super and mega satellites got underway. This is where future Tiffany “Crazy Bitch” Williamsons earn their seat, then continually suck out better players over ten days during the Main Event and outlast 5600 people on their way to bank nearly half a mil, thereby making you think that you have a chance (in hell) to do the same thing. You can get your luck on daily at two $225 buy-in Super Satellites. One starts at 3 p.m. The other at 9 p.m. There’s also a $1060 buy-in Mega Satellite held nightly at 7 p.m. Good luck, you crazy bitches.

The real play, sort of, begins today with event #1, the $500 NLHE tournament exclusively for casino employees. This is an annual tradition that may or may not have started in 2000 and was originally just open to dealers but recently has been open to all casino employees, which we understand means anyone actively employed at a casino, except for the hookers. Last year, Andy Nguyen was the “nguyen”-er, so to speak, and took home a nice paycheck of $83,390. Nguyen was a poker dealer at Binion‚Äôs Casino in Vegas and beat out a record field of 662 in 14 hours of total play. This year’s event will be a two-day affair and no doubt will field a bigger field.
By the way, if you think dealers are just glamorous, celeb types who live the high life of exclusive clubs, supermodel girlfriends, and jet setting to the French Riviera when they’re not tossing cards, you’re wrong. They’re not. At all. But many are pretty darn good poker players. Scott Fischman, Mike Matusow, Evelyn Ng, Theo Jorgensen, Joe Awata, John Phan and the poker playin’ father of $3.7-million-dollar WPT Champ Joe Bartholdi are just some of the the pros who formerly dealt cards.

Tomorrow at noon is the start of event #2, the $1,500 NLHE tournament. In 2005, more than 2,300 players competed, with Allen Cunningham taking home the bracelet and unprecedented $725,405 first place cash. Cunningham went on to bank more than a million bucks at the 2005 WSOP before the main event even started and was named the 2005 ESPN/Toyota Player of the Year.


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