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New Episodes of the 2009 WSOP Begin Airing Tuesday

First Show Will Feature the $40,000 No-Limit Hold’em Event

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Phil IveyThere was one name that was repeated early and often in an ESPN media conference call earlier this week — Phil Ivey.

“There’s some mystical, magical quality to Phil Ivey that elevates him above the rest,” said Norman Chad, the well-known color commentator for ESPN’s poker broadcasts. “He just has an amazing table presence that’s unequaled in the game.”

It is obvious that both ESPN’s commentators and producers are excited about Ivey making the main-event final table, and what that means for their broadcasts.

“This is the most excited I’ve ever been for a season of the World Series of Poker,” said Jamie Horowitz, the coordinating producer for ESPN. “It’s long been discussed in poker — could a pro ever win the main event [again]? Having Phil Ivey as part of our November Nine has just added a new level of interest in poker, not just on the blogs but even within ESPN … There is just an elevated sense of excitement for this season.”

That season begins this Tuesday at 8 p.m. on ESPN with coverage of the new $40,000 no-limit hold’em event. Chad’s fellow commentator Lon McEachern expressed enthusiasm for the new event, saying how entertaining it was to watch the new age of online pros take on some of the more established names in the industry. He says that despite a few unfamiliar names making the prestigious final table, all were worthy of the accomplishment.

“The $40k event really brought the cream to the crop,” said McEachern.

ESPN will feature four events in its 2009 WSOP coverage — two bracelet events in the main event and the $40k tournament, a charity tournament, and a new invitational tournament that welcomed back many of the surviving main-event champions of past years.

“We get to kick [coverage] off with new events that we’ve never televised before like the $40,000 championship, the champions invitational, and Ante Up for Africa,” said Horowitz, who also highlighted the network’s increased coverage of the biggest tournament of the year. “We’re doing a record number of hours this year [for the main event] — 24 hours — followed by the two-hour final table on Nov. 10.”

New broadcasts will always be shown Tuesday at 8 p.m. on ESPN and re-air throughout the week.

 
 
 
 

Comments

cchappa
12 years ago

They hype up the final table for four months, then it doesn't matter what happens to Ivey. So they lose two-hours of Ivey if he busts first. I'm sure the four months of Ivey-hype would more than pay for it.

 
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texasroadgambler
12 years ago

What price do the books in Vegas have up on Ivey?

 
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yolkypalky
12 years ago

One thing is almost certain, Ivey isn't going to play just to move up a spot or two like that shortstack dude from last year, Ivey will be mixing it up to go big or go home.

 
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texasroadgambler
12 years ago

Even though Doyle thinks that Ivey is too young to get his vote thie year for the Hall of Fame, I don't; and I also get a vote as one of the 15 living members.

I will vote for him, and one other nominee.

 
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anchordraw
12 years ago

ESPN showed very few hands from last years final table. they need to break it up into two shows. you get the nine bust out hands, and may 10-15 others in a two hour show, hardly the coverage you'd expect after all the hype.

 
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keeentd
12 years ago

Can't believe ESPN is only showing 4 events this year, and all of them are NLHE. Lots of people want to see PLO. It is the game of the very near future and once it catches on will replace NLHE, just as NLHE replaced &card Stud, which replaced 5 Card Draw, etc...

 
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thedfunk
12 years ago

The fact that Ivey made the Nov. 9 means that ESPN and Harrahs get to hype him up for the 4 months leading to the final table.

Whether Ivey busts first or wins it all, ESPN and Harrahs both win.

 
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reraze
12 years ago

Ivey has a talent that can't be duplicated. He just knows where and when to bet/raise/fold. People fear him and no pro wants to play him. He will go down as the greatest all around poker player of all time.

 
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