2014 WSOP

Stars Gather For The WSOP 2014 Fantasy Poker Draft

2014 WSOP

2014 WSOP

The Aria in Las Vegas is often packed with some of the biggest names in the poker world, grinding away at the cash game tables in the poker room, sampling the delights of some of the restaurants or relaxing to some of the best entertainment the state has to offer.

On Monday evening, an army of established professional players once again descended on Aria but not to play poker. Instead, they hired a lavish suite, employed a professional auctioneer and got down to the business of choosing their teams for the $25K Fantasy Poker draft.

The draft began in 2011 and saw 15 teams exchange $25,000 for the chance to win big and have bragging rights over their peers. The team submitted by Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier and Jason Somerville ran away with the title – and the $225,000 first place prize – after they won by almost 400 points.

Mercier won again in 2012, topping the leader board of 11 teams to claim the $178,750 winner’s prize before World Poker Tour Grand Prix de Paris and WSOP bracelet winner Matt Waxman bested the 14 team entered in 2013 and by a margin of nearly 300 points.

The 2014 edition has 11 teams in the running, meaning a prize pool of $275,000 and, if we base it off the similarly sized 2012 event, the winner will walk away with $178,750. The 11 teams are, in order of picks:

  • Matt Waxman
  • Brandon Steven
  • Rob Mizrachi
  • Mike Gorodinsky
  • Jesse Martin
  • Jason Mercier
  • Gypsy
  • Todd Brunson
  • Kroko-Ushan
  • Media
  • Dan Fleyshman

The rules of the draft are simple. Each team starts with $200 to bid on a player. When a team chooses a player they wish to draft the bidding process takes place just like any other auction and that player is awarded to the highest bidder. Each team has to consist of eight players, no more or no less.

Points are awarded to players based on their finishing positions during open WSOP events, meaning the Casino Employees, Ladies, or Seniors events do not count for the purposes of the draft. Players receive a single point for reaching the money places, five points for finishing in positions 10 through 18 an then between 10 points and 50 points for the various places at the final table.

Bonus points are awarded as the field size grows and are multiplied if the event the player cashes in has a $5,000 or $10,000 buy-in or higher.

Phil Ivey

Phil Ivey, this year’s most expensive player

The bidding process adds an extra level of strategy to the draft because players can try to ramp up the price their opponents pay for a particular player by trying to outbid them and then ceasing bidding, leaving the other team facing the prospect of paying over the odds for their choice.

This looks to have happened with Phil Ivey and Team Media – a team made up of PokerNews’ Donnie Peters and Rich Ryan. Team Media spent $101 of their $200 budget on acquiring Ivey, the most expensive purchase of any of the teams, although the likes of Daniel Negreanu ($860, Jason Mercier ($87) and recent WPT World Championship winner Scott Seiver ($86) were also costly for their respective teams.

When the dust had settled and the final pick made, the 11 teams were chosen and set in stone. They’re sure to be the subject of discussion and scrutiny by the poker community over the next six weeks and 65-events. Who do you think will win the 2014 WSOP $25K Fantasy Draft?

Team Waxman

Pick 1: Alexander Kostritsyn – $20
Pick 2: Paul Volpe – $60
Pick 3: Erik Seidel – $22
Pick 4: Shaun Deeb – $15
Pick 5: Brian Rast – $19
Pick 6: John Hennigan – $25
Pick 7: Tom Schneider – $17
Pick 8: Josh Arieh – $22

Team Steven

Pick 1: Chris Klodnicki – $55
Pick 2: David Bach – $29
Pick 3: Matthew Ashton – $36
Pick 4: Owais Ahmed – $27
Pick 5: Allen Kessler – $14
Pick 6: Huck Seed – $1
Pick 7: Erick Lindgren – $16
Pick 8: Joe Cassidy – $22

Team Mizrachi

Pick 1: Dan Kelly – $66
Pick 2: Marco Johnson – $67
Pick 3: Daniel Alaei – $27
Pick 4: Jeff Lisandro – $20
Pick 5: Shannon Shorr – $13
Pick 6: Rob Mizrachi – $1
Pick 7: Dan Smith – $2
Pick 8: Scott Bohlman – $4

Team Gorodinsky

Pick 1: Scott Clements – $66
Pick 2: Greg Mueller – $41
Pick 3: Jeremy Ausmus – $20
Pick 4: Matt Glantz – $39
Pick 5: Justin Bonomo – $23
Pick 6: Chino Rheem – $4
Pick 7: Max Pescatori – $2
Pick 8: Noah Schwartz – $1

Team Martin

Pick 1: David “Bakes” Baker – $73
Pick 2: Scott Seiver – $86
Pick 3: Adam Friedman – $13
Pick 4: Rep Porter – $2
Pick 5: John Juanda – $5
Pick 6: Ben Yu – $13
Pick 7: Phil Galfond – $7
Pick 8: Dani Stern – $1

Team Mercier

Pick 1: John Monnette – $63
Pick 2: Jesse Martin – $41
Pick 3: Jon Turner – $22
Pick 4: Brian Hastings – $24
Pick 5: Mike Gorodinsky – $35
Pick 6: Bryce Yockey – $5
Pick 7: David Williams – $1
Pick 8: Steve Billirakis – $9

Team Gypsy

Pick 1: Calvin Anderson – $61
Pick 2: Mike Watson – $51
Pick 3: George Danzer – $40
Pick 4: Mike Leah – $29
Pick 5: Brett Richey – $4
Pick 6: Chris Tryba – $1
Pick 7: Ismael Bojang – $3
Pick 8: Daniel Idema – $11

Team Brunson

Pick 1: Daniel Negreanu – $86
Pick 2: Nick Schulman – $54
Pick 3: David Chiu – $39
Pick 4: Frank Kassela – $3
Pick 5: Mike Matusow – $10
Pick 6: Eli Elezra – $1
Pick 7: Todd Brunson – $2
Pick 8 – Victor Ramdin – $5

Team Kroko-Ushan

Pick 1: Jason Mercier – $87
Pick 2: Vanessa Selbst – $70
Pick 3: Vladimir Shchemelev – $14
Pick 4: Sorel Mizzi – $4
Pick 5: Jonathan Duhamel – $1
Pick 6: James Obst – $15
Pick 7: Konstantin Puchkov – $3
Pick 8: Steve Sung – $6

Team Media

Pick 1: Phil Ivey – $101
Pick 2: Stephen Chidwick – $66
Pick 3: Andrey Zaichenko – $11
Pick 4: Chris George – $10
Pick 5: Martin Jacobson – $1
Pick 6: Faraz Jaka – $1
Pick 7: Jeff Madsen – $1
Pick 8: Greg Merson – $1

Team Fleyshman

Pick 1: Antonio Esfandiari – $18
Pick 2: Shawn Buchanan – $69
Pick 3: Phil Hellmuth – $54
Pick 4: Mike Mizrachi – $37
Pick 5: John Racener – $16
Pick 6: Yevgeniy Timoshenko – $4
Pick 7: Jared Bleznick – $1
Pick 8: Jason Koon – $1

Event #2, the $25,000 No Limit Hold’em Mixed-Max is the first 2014 WSOP tournament that players can pick up points in. This tournament kicks off at 4:00pm on May 27 and should attract all of the big hitters from across the globe.

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