WSOP 2018

The Nightly Turbo: Big Game Returns, TCOOP and Aussie Millions Under Way

Nightly Turbo

Miss any of the day's biggest poker stories? You've come to the right place. In this edition of the Nightly Turbo, we're bringing you the return of the Big Game, the start of a few different poker series, and more.

In Case You Missed It:

Earlier this week, PokerStars' parent company revealed that it has agreed to purchase a struggling Atlantic City casino. New Jersey Sen. Ray Lesniak told our Matthew Kredell that the deal would be a good thing for the state.

The World Series of Poker Circuit Choctaw Durant Main Event kicks off Friday, and PokerNews will be on site to bring you all the coverage. Who won the preliminary tournaments leading up to the big one? Chad Holloway looks back at the winners thus far.

Season 4 of the PokerNews Mid-States Poker Tour kicks off next month. The first stop takes place at Running Aces Harness Park in Columbus, Minnesota.

Peter Jennings, known as "Marshall28" online, is a poker instructor at For his latest video, Jennings stepped down from his regular stakes of $2/$4 to show students how to climb up through the low-stakes games.

PokerStars hired a new chief operating officer this week. Read all about Rafi Ashkenazi in the press release here at

Big Game in Austria

The popular Big Game will be returning in March to round out festivities at the World Poker Tour Vienna. Big Game VII, a continuous all-action cash game, will run for 12 hours on Feb. 22 at the Montesino Casino in Vienna, Austria.

The first six seasons of the Big Game brought out some of poker's superstars, including Tony G, Mike Sexton, Eugene Katchalov, Jonathan Duhamel, Scott Seiver, Sam Trickett, Mike Matusow, Roland de Wolfe, David Ulliott, and Phil Laak. Last year, Laak played the entire 48-hour session of the Big Game and finished as the biggest winner. However, committing one of the biggest blunders in televised poker history cost him €60,000.

The blinds at the Big Game XII will start at €25/€50, but the stakes will ultimately be determined by players at the table. The game will be filmed for television in the U.K. and then distributed worldwide. Jesse May will anchor the commentary with several special guest analysts in the booth, and the action will be presented by’s Kara Scott.

“It’s great to be hosting the Big Game again this year – let’s just hope it will be as eventful as last year," said Montesino's Leon Groenewoud. " WPT Vienna is the centerpiece of a festival of poker, and once again we will be going all out to offer cash games for players at all different levels.”

Big Game in Australia

The 2013 Aussie Millions Poker Championships began Thursday at the Crown Casino in Melbourne, Australia. The first of the 26 events on the schedule was an $1,100 buy-in No Limit Hold'em tournament with a Repechage format, allowing players the option to re-enter during the second or third Day 1 flight if they bust.

The opening event features three starting flights, the second and third taking place at 12:30 p.m. local time on Jan. 18 and Jan. 19, respectively. Day 2 kicks off at 12:30 p.m. on Jan. 20.

Last year's opening event attracted 946 players, generating a prize pool of $973,882 after re-entries. The tournament was won by top Aussie poker pro Brendon Rubie, who collected $205,985 — the biggest score of his career.

Other events coming up on the 2013 schedule include the $1,000 Shane Warne Foundation Charity Event (Sunday, Jan. 20); Event #2: $1,100 Pot Limit Omaha (Monday, Jan. 21); and Event #3: No Limit Hold'em Shootout (Tuesday, Jan. 22).

PokerNews' live coverage of the 2013 Aussie Millions Poker Championships will begin on Jan. 27 with the $10,000 buy-in Main Event. We'll also be providing live updates during the $25,000 Challenge, the $100,000 Challenge, and the massive $250,000 Challenge.

Keep it locked in to the PokerNews Live Reporting page for exclusive coverage from the 2013 Aussie Millions! For the complete schedule of events, visit

Borgata Winter Poker Open

Major tournaments are popping up everywhere this month. Although most of the attention is being given to the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure and Aussie Millions, the Borgata in Atlantic City is putting on a massive series of its own.

On Tuesday, the Borgata Winter Open got under way with Event #1, a $560 buy-in no-limit hold'em tournament with an astonishing $1 million guaranteed prize pool. A total of 3,871 entries across two Day 1 flights generated a prize pool of $1,935,500, creating a top prize of $318,104 for the winner.

Despite the relatively low entry fee, poker pros flocked to Atlantic City to take a shot at a huge score. Among the notables taking part in the event who advanced to Thursday's Day 2 were Amanda Musumeci, Dwyte Pilgrim, Ylon Schwartz, Kyle Bowker, Eric Buchman, and Alex Queen, who is coming off a victory at the Borgata $250,00 Guarantee Holiday Deep Stack last month for $100,000.

Paul Spitzberg was chip leader going into Day 2 of the opening event, having built his 20,000 starting stack into a 942,000-chip tower by the end of Day 1a. Jack Rapaport was the Day 1b chip leader with 755,000 chips good enough for second on the leaderboard entering Thursday. Both players took home a $3,000 prize as end-of-night-chip leaders on Day 1.

Live updates for the Borgata Winter Open can be found here. The series culminates with the $3,300 buy-in World Poker Tour Borgata Poker Open Main Event from Jan. 27 through Feb. 1.

MiniFTOPS Results & Main Event Freeroll Password!

Full Tilt Poker's MiniFTOPS XXI continued Wednesday with two more events on the 35-tournament schedule. Events 25 and 26 easily surpassed their respective guarantees with more than $140,000 handed out across the two events.

Here's a look at the results from the final tables:

Event #25: Pot-Limit Omaha Head-up($15K Guaranteed)

Buy-inEntrantsPrize Pool

*Denotes heads-up deal

Event #26: No-Limit Hold'em Six-Max w/ Rebuys ($75K Guaranteed)

Buy-inEntrantsPrize Pool

The MiniFTOPS action resumed Thursday with two more tournaments: Event #27 ($11 No-Limit Hold'em) and Event #28 ($33 Razz).

The series culminates on Sunday, Jan. 20, with the $75 Multi-Entry Main Event. In case you missed our announcement this week, we will be giving away 100 Main Event tickets to our valued PokerNews readers! An exclusive freeroll will take place on Saturday, Jan. 19 at 13:00 ET.

Gaining entry to the MiniFTOPS PokerNews Freeroll is very easy. Just follow these steps:

  • Log into your Full Tilt Poker account.
  • Find the MiniFTOPS PokerNews Freeroll (ID: 247387976) in the Tournament > Private tab.
  • Enter the password: minihouse123
  • Finish in the top 100 places to win a seat to the MiniFTOPS XXI Main Event, worth $75.

Register now and get in on the action!

Turbo Grind

PokerStars' second annual Turbo Championship of Online Poker (TCOOP) kicked off on Thursday with the first event, a $27 no-limit hold'em six-max event with a massive $750,000 guarantee. The TCOOP was introduced in January 2012 as a fast-action alternative to PokerStars' two other online series, the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) and the Spring Championship of Online Poker (SCOOP).

The series will run from Jan. 17 through 27, 2013, offering a guarantee prize pool of $15 million — $5 million more than 2012’s inaugural series. TCOOP will have 50 events spread over 11 days with buy-ins ranging from $7.50 all the way up to the $2,100 High Roller event. The Main Event will be a $700 no-limit hold’em affair on Jan. 27, featuring a guaranteed prize pool of $2 million and a minimum $300,000 for first place. In addition, the winner of the 2013 TCOOP Player of the Series will be awarded a 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure package.

This year’s series will hold a variety of games including no-limit hold’em, pot-limit Omaha, no-limit Omaha hi/lo, no-limit draw, triple stud, H.O.R.S.E., 8-game, razz, and more. In addition to the wide array of game selection, an assortment of formats will be offered as well, including knockouts, hyper-turbos, shootouts, heads-up, four-max, six-max, big antes, 2x chance, and rebuys.

Poker pro David "betudontbet" Emmons seized the Main Event title in last year’s series to win $382,856. Emmons took on Chris "ImDaNuts" Oliver, another successful online pro, heads-up to win it all. The TCOOP Leaderboard winner was Scott "Mongy" O’Reily, who played all 50 events and cashed in 14. That was enough to receive the Player of the Series trophy and a SCOOP Main Event High ticket worth $10,300.

If you're looking to partake in some of the TCOOP events and need some guidance on how to play turbos, check out the video featuring advice from some high-stakes tournament specialists:

Visit for more information, including the full TCOOP tournament schedule.

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