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The Nightly Turbo: Jason Mercier Leads The Nuts, Sam Holden Documentary, and More

Jason Mercier

It was a busy weekend on the virtual felts as Viktor "Isildur1" Blom and Isaac "philivey2694" Haxton faced off in the $1 million PokerStars SuperStar Showdown. Blom took nearly $300,000 from Haxton in the first two days, but the match resumed on Monday. We'll have a full recap for you on Tuesday. In the meantime, the Nightly Turbo is bringing you the latest edition of ESPN's The Nuts, as well as a documentary about 2011 November Niner Sam Holden, and more.

In Case You Missed It

How did Melanie Weisner get her sponsorship deal with Full Tilt Poker? Find out that and more in the latest edition of Seat Open.

We all know what poker players do on the felt, but what about in "normal" life? In the latest from the Off the Felt series, we talk to Christina Lindley about prop bets, her hidden talents, and more.

Did you miss Sunday's World Poker Tour coverage on FSN? Read our WPT recap to get caught up.

Kevin MacPhee made four final tables on Sunday. Was he the biggest winner of the day at PokerStars? Find out in the Sunday Briefing.

Poker pro Alec Torelli was back with another blog on Monday. Torelli's latest entry focuses on accountability and applying it to poker.

ESPN's The Nuts

The latest edition of ESPN's The Nuts has been released. The monthly blog post ranks the best poker players in the world at the moment. The 10-person panel includes PokerNews' Editor in Chief Elaine Chaivarlis, PokerNews' Tournament Reporting Manager Don Peters, ESPN's Andrew Feldman, Gary Wise, and Bernard Lee, among others.

Jason Mercier held the top spot in the rankings for the tenth consecutive month, receiving seven of the 10 first-place votes from the panel. Mercier has been quiet on the tournament circuit in 2012 but recently cashed in the World Poker Tour Bay 101 Main Event and is gearing up for a big World Series of Poker.

Fellow Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel jumped three spots to No. 2 in The Nuts rankings this month. Duhamel leads the 2012 Global Poker Index Player of the Year leaderboard by a wide margin after making five final tables in three months, including a victory in a $5,000 side event at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. He has nearly $1.4 million in live tournament earnings already in 2012.

Rounding out the top five in this month's rankings were Phil Ivey, Eugene Katchalov and Erik Seidel. Ivey (two) and Seidel (one) each garnered first-place votes from panel members even though they failed to cash in any events in March. Seidel hasn't reached the money in a live tournament since last October — a far cry from his blazing start a year ago.

If you want to find out what the rest of the list looks, check it out at

Sam Holden Featured in Documentary

On April 9, November Niner and Team 888poker ambassador Sam Holden will be featured in a documentary series about his run at the World Series of Poker Main Event. The 30-minute documentary provides viewers with an all-access look into Holden's preparation for the November Nine and what his plans are for 2012.

The documentary also takes a look into Holden's education at the University of Kent and how the new breed of highly educated, young poker players is changing the game. Holden traveled to Las Vegas for the first time last summer and finished ninth in the WSOP Main Event for $782,115.

The full documentary will be aired on Sky 231 in the United Kingdom and over 20 satellite channels across Europe. Here's a sneak peek:

Read more in the 888 press release.

Bodog Adds a New Pro

On Monday, Bodog announced Jennette “Jay” Tan as the newest member of Team Bodog. Tan is coming off a pair of impressive results at the PokerStars Macau Poker Cup where she took second in the HKD$4,500 Knockout Bounty (HKD$120,000) and fifth in the HKD$10,120 Main Event (HKD$315,000).

Tan joins Evelyn Ng and Tatjana Pasalic on Team Bodog. She will represent the brand when it enters the Chinese poker market as Bodog88.

"The Bodog brand is all about having a good time and they are never afraid to take on the establishment and I like to think that's me too," said Tan, who is also a proficient Mahjong player. "Bodog88 also seems to really understand the Asian market ... poker is relatively new to Asia where Mahjong is still king and I hear Bodog88 will have that online very soon. I've never seen anybody else have Super 6 Bacarat online before either — this is huge in the Macau casinos right now. It shows a real understanding of the region."

Born in Los Angeles, Tan relocated to Hong Kong to begin a career at Goldman Sachs. It was then that she saw Daniel Negreanu playing poker on television and decided to give the game a try. She quickly became a winning player and quit her job to play poker full time.

More info about Tan can be found in Bodog's press release.

Qualifiers Compete for Premier League V Seats

The PartyPoker Premier League V Main Event is still two days away, but the action at the Montesino Casino in Vienna, Austria, has been fierce as qualifiers compete for the last two seats in the $125,000 buy-in televised event.

On Sunday, U.K. pro Mathew Frankland was the first to earn a spot in the Premier League, besting 11 other players including Ian Frazer, Antony Lellouche and Erich Kollman. Frankland and Giovanni Rizzo were the last two players competing for the seat. On the final hand, Frankland's {A-Hearts}{6-Spades} held up against Rizzo's {A-Spades}{4-Clubs} to close out the first qualifying round.

The second qualifying group was still playing at press time, so we'll have a recap for you on Tuesday. The group includes Bruno Fitoussi, Melanie Weisner, Dominik Nitsche, Xuan Liu, Steve O'Dwyer, Griffin Benger, and Chris Ferguson doppelganger Michael Thoms. Tony G crashed Thoms' table on Monday asking for his Full Tilt Poker money back.

Here's a look at the Premier League V lineup with one spot left up for grabs:

Group AGroup B 
Tony GSam Trickett 
Andy FrankenbergerDan "Jungleman" Cates 
Erik SeidelPatrik Antonius 
Luke SchwartzVanessa Selbst 
Phil LaakYevgeniy Timoshenko 
Eugene KatchalovBertrand "ElkY" Grospellier 
Tom DwanScott Seiver 
Mathew FranklandQualifier 2 

EPT Campione Recap

The inaugural European Poker Tour Campione Main Event wrapped up over the weekend. Sarah Grant took a look back at the top highlights of the week.

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