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Field Announced for 2011 NBC Heads Up

Emmitt Smith, Peter Eastgate, Dan Cates, and Thomas Marchese Among 64

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Dan Cates has been the biggest winner online over the past year.The field for the 2011 NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship was announced on Wednesday morning.

Highlights from the list of 64 include former NFL running back Emmitt Smith, the recently unretired Peter Eastgate, Dan “jungleman12” Cates, and 2010 Card Player POY Thomas Marchese.

Players who cashed last year but won’t be returning include Jerry Yang, Jamie Gold, and Paul Wasicka. Wasicka won the event in 2007.

The buy-in for the single-elimination invitational tournament has increased from $20,000 to $25,000, resulting in a first-place prize of $750,000. Second place will take home $300,000 of the $1.8 million prize pool.

The first-round pairings will be chosen at random during the draw party held at the Pure Nightclub at Caesars Palace on Thursday, Mar. 3. The competition begins Friday, Mar. 4 and continues through Sunday, Mar. 6. The action will be filmed for broadcast on NBC over six consecutive Sundays in April and May.

The entire field (alphabetical order):

1. Alexander, Jason
2. Antonius, Patrik
3. Baldwin, Eric
4. Benyamine, David
5. Bloch, Andy
6. Boeree, Liv
7. Bord, James
8. Brunson, Doyle
9. Cada, Joe
10. Cates, Daniel
11. Chan, Johnny
12. Cheadle, Don
13. Chouity, Nicolas
14. Cunningham, Allen
15. Duhamel, Jonathan
16. Duke, Annie
17. Dwan, Tom
18. Eastgate, Peter
19. Elezra, Eli
20. Esfandiari, Antonio
21. Ferguson, Chris
22. Forrest, Ted
23. Galfond, Phil
24. Gordon, Phil
25. Greenstein, Barry
26. Grospellier, Bertrand
27. Hachem, Joe
28. Hansen, Gus
29. Harman, Jennifer
30. Hellmuth, Phil
31. Ivey, Phil
32. Jaka, Faraz
33. Juanda, John
34. Kaplan, Gabe
35. Kassela, Frank
36. Katchalov, Eugene
37. Laak, Phil
38. Lederer, Howard
39. Lindgren, Erick
40. Mahmood, Ayaz
41. Marchese, Thomas
42. Matusow, Mike
43. Mercier, Jason
44. Mizrachi, Michael
45. Mizzi, Sorel
46. Moneymaker, Chris
47. Negreanu, Daniel
48. Nguyen, Scotty
49. Obrestad, Annette
50. Phillips, Dennis
51. Pilgrim, Dwyte
52. Racener, John
53. Raymer, Greg
54. Rousso, Vanessa
55. Scott, Kara
56. Seed, Huck
57. Seidel, Erik
58. Selbst, Vanessa
59. Smith, Emmitt
60. Smith, Gavin
61. Tilly, Jennifer
62. Whitmire, Melburn
63. Williams, David
64. Young, Justin

Stay tuned to CardPlayer.com, as we will be at Caesars Palace to bring you all of the action as well as a bracket challenge.

 
 
 
 

Comments

robtr3
almost 11 years ago

Yang, Gold, & Wasicka are out? I hope they were invited and that not playing was their decision.

 
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mkhammer
almost 11 years ago

why do you hope that? with wasicka, you'd think they would ask since he's a prior champ.......the other two do nothing for the poker world anymore so why would they be one of 64 in the world to be selected?

 
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michigan123cl
almost 11 years ago

I hope you are kidding about Yang and GOLD, Gold is horrible, you will never see him win another tournament. He got lucky at the right time. He sucks at cash games as well.

 
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mevans612
almost 11 years ago

Exactly right hammer.

 
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brunell4070
almost 11 years ago

No Viktor Blom....?

 
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tomekk23
almost 11 years ago

tom dwan is the best

 
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cchappa
almost 11 years ago

I'm tired of all these celebrities shelling out money so they can pretend they're high-caliber poker players. Jason Alexander? Emmitt Smith? I mean, aside from face time during the WSOP, Alexander is your average daed money. I love Emmitt Smith, but what suddenly qualifies him for this?

Oh, I forgot: because this is about TV ratings. Stupid me. Well, if Emmitt wins his first match, I'd damn well better see his MC Hammer moves from DWTS.

 
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brunell4070
almost 11 years ago

It is 100% correct to include these big name celebrities... trying to expose poker to mainstream is tough without names people do not know. Your average American could give two shits about Tom Dwan or Phil Galfond. But, throw in a famous actor or athlete and they are suddenly interested. In return they begin to play, more fish and poker players in the cycle. Hence the poker boom..Chris Moneymaker. Please start thinking about the big picture :)

 
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cchappa
almost 11 years ago

Yeah, I suppose you're right. At least it's not OVERLOADED with celeb fish.

 
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dirtydirty00
almost 11 years ago

yup. Id like to see a few more poker players in here. Put in Corkins and Clements. After all he did just win the heads up championship onlne.

 
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gangles
almost 11 years ago

I agree. Corkins and Clements would be a much better fit than guys like Lederer and Gordon. Lederer hasn't been a competitor in years, and I'm not sure Gordon ever was.

 
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azona
almost 11 years ago

@ gangles...I get the comment about Lederer, however as a founding member of FULL TILT, I am sure he has some pull. As far as Gordon goes, he has won some major tourneys recently and also is known for his instructional expertise. His book, little green book, might be one of the best "beginner" books on the market today...

 
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hithenose
almost 11 years ago

Mizzi, you gotta be kidding me. Racener, sure he's had 3 DUI's in the last year and one since the WSOP FT, why not reward him with more airtime. Annie Duke, enough said, Jennifer TIlly/ Phil Laak please, plus at least a half dozen more who don't deserve this and should be filled with guys like mortenson

 
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