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ESPN to Air 2009 World Series of Poker Beginning Tuesday the 28th
Wed, Jul 22nd, 2009 @ 12:00am
Now that the final table has paused, ESPN can put those old World Series of Poker reruns to rest and roll out their 2009 footage.
ESPN has shuffled up their WSOP programming schedule this year, answering their viewer's requests for "more Main Event!" with 24-hours dedicated solely to the tournament of all tournaments. Bracelet events paid the price, as in addition to the Main Event, only Event #2, the special $40K anniversary tourney, will hand over any gold on ESPN.
The Official ESPN Schedule:
The $40K event, which is a one-time event commemorating 40 years of the WSOP, will be the first to air onTuesday, July 28th at 8:00 p.m. ET. Two more episodes will be squeezed in before the Main Event; the WSOP Champions Invitational and the Ante Up for Africa charity tournament.
The WSOP Champions Invitational is a freeroll that was held to reward all former Main Event winners. I lieu of a bracelet, you will be able to see the winner awarded the Binion Cup, presented by Jack Binion, and a shiny new car on the air on Tuesday, August 4th, at 8:00 p.m. ET.
The highly successful Ante Up for Africa charity tournament is back on the WSOP schedule for the third year, but will air on ESPN for the first time. Charles Barkley, Adam Sandler, Ben Affleck, Matt Damon, Ray Romano and Brad Garrett will share the tables with dozens of other celebs and some of the biggest names in poker, with the big winner being their partner foundations that raise money for relief efforts in Darfur. This tourney will air for a couple hours the following Tuesday, August 11th, again at 8:00 p.m. ET.
Then, it's time for the big one. Beginning August 18th, the Main Event will be shown every Tuesday from 8-10:00 p.m. ET. Each day of the Main Event will get a two hour block of coverage, including each of the four Day 1 flights and a pair of Day 2's. This will continue until Day 8 airs on November 3rd.
That brings us to Tuesday, November 10th, the final table and the "November Nine". See the new champ crowned on your TV, just hours after the bracelet is given away in Las Vegas. Darvin Moon, a logger from Maryland, will hold onto the title of chip leader for the next few months, but the story of the new November Nine is most definitely Phil Ivey, the biggest name to ever make the game's biggest stage.
ESPN poker host Norman Chad, in a Tuesday media conference call, said Ivey possessed "mystical, magical qualities." Chad continued that Ivey can induce a "sense of terror, poker-wise. He has an amazing table presence... If you have the greatest player in the world, and you have a logger who his whole business is lumber and logs, at the same final table. Phil Ivey and Darvin Moon are the Main Event in a nutshell. That you could have that much diversity of person and player. If you start right there, you have a good final table."
"It's long been discussed that in the modern era of poker, could a pro ever win the Main Event?" said Jamie Horowitz, ESPN Coordinating Producer, on the same call. "Having Phil Ivey as a part of our November Nine just added a new level of interest to poker... there is an elevated sense of excitement for this season."
Can't wait to watch it on TV? Click here to read Poker Pages' live coverage of the Main Event... as well as the $40K event, the Ante Up for Africa tourney, and 54 other bracelet events from the '09 WSOP that ESPN isn't going to show you. Also, if November 10th is just too long, join us for live coverage of the Main Event final table beginning on November 7th.
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