Although the Super High Roller Bowl is more than two months away, it’s been the main topic in poker media for the last few days. The reason for this was the announcement by the organizers that all 49 seats have already been reserved by the biggest names in the industry.
Super High Roller Bowl 2015
The inaugural event took place last year, featuring the $500,000 buy-in. Brian Rast ended up outlasting the field of 43 players for a payday of $7.5 million and all bragging rights that came with the victory.
The total prize pool for the event amounted to astonishing $21,500,000. In order for Rast to claim the victory, he had to cross swords with some of the best players on the planet, including the likes of Scott Seiver, Connor Drinan and Timofey Kuznetsov, whom poker fans know better by his online alias “Trueteller”.
Eventually it winded down to a Seiver vs. Rast heads up battle and despite Scott’s initial chip-lead, he couldn’t hold in crucial spots and had to be satisfied with a runner-up finish, which netted him cool $5 million and some six-figure change.
What’s new in 2016?
For this year, the organizers, Poker Central, in cooperation with the Aria Resort and Casino, changed things a bit. Those wanting to test their skills will need to ponny up only $300k, and there is additional $300,000 added to the overall prize pool.
Because of the added money, some poker fans jokingly named the event rakeless high roller. Even the organizers are calling it a negative rake event on their official page.
The Super High Roller Bowl 2016 is scheduled to start on May 29th and will feature a guaranteed first place of $5,000,000, with a total of $15,000,000 up for grabs.
Pick your favorite
The event is capped at 49 players and all the seats are already sold out. We can expect that all the players who reserved their seat will be there, as there is a $30,000 non-refundable fee that they all had to pay up front. I am guessing that even though all these players are playing ultra high stakes, they would still need a very strong reason to just leave $30k behind.
In this star-studded field, it is really hard to pick a favorite to win. For a while now, the super high roller events have been playgrounds for poker stars who enjoy competing against each other even though there are much softer games to be played out there.
Some of the players who will take it to the felt in this year’s Super High Roller Bowl include the defending champion Brian Rast, poker superstars Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hellmuth, Isaac Haxton and Phil Laak, the high stakes regulars Dan Colman, Justin Bonomo and Igor Kurganov. Scott Seiver will also be there, because it wouldn’t be a super high roller without Scott Seiver.
The list goes on, but you get the gist. All these players have proven their skills time and time again, playing in some of the toughest games out there. Singling out one as a favorite is virtually impossible.
Businessmen mixing it up with the pros
However, the allure of an event of this magnitude doesn’t only attract professional players. A few rich businessmen will also test their luck and skill against the sharks, including Bill Perkins, John Morgan, Talal Shakerchi and Dan Shak who is, in all fairness, a hybrid between a businessman and a professional player.
The only lady who confirmed her participation thus far is Kathy Lehne, an entrepreneur whose fortune is estimated at $340 million by Forbes.
There are also two players whose identity hasn’t been revealed yet and poker fans around the globe are hoping that at least one of those spots belongs to Phil Ivey. It would also be cool to see Tom Dwan join the fun, but it is not very likely.