The stage is set for another mammoth cash game with the news that Party Poker’s Poker Den: The Big Game is to return for a third series. The program, which features a pro heavy marathon cash game, is also upping the ante – increasing the game’s length from 24 to 36 hours. A raft of well known professional players will be shut away in the intimate Poker Den in London’s East End to battle it out across the felt.
Buy-in’s for the competition are set at either $10,000 or $20,000 with blinds at $25-$50. With a table full of players no stranger to high stakes gambling, expect to see plenty of action inducing straddling. Also new this year is the “Party Pot,” a bonus fund that will pay out $1000 to the winner of a specific hand every hour. Everything seems to be in place to encourage large sums of money to swap hands over the course of the two day event.
Eddie Hearn, Head of Online Gaming at Matchroom Sport, is positive about the show’s growing reputation: “The Poker Den has come such a long way since we started it back in the summer of 2005. The Big Game has been such a huge success, and the two series so far have attracted the best players in the world. We have seen some great action, fantastic banter between the players, and some berating between players.”
Series sponsors Party Poker believe that “there is a little doubt that the Poker Den has a cult following.” A fact which rings true when you consider the sheer number of top flight professionals who are slated to appear in the third series, including: Phil Hellmuth, Dave “The Devilfish” Ulliott, Jamie Gold, Robert Williamson III, Roland De Wolfe, Phil Laak, Antonio Esfandiari, Mike Matusow, Tony G, and Jennifer Tilly amongst others. Many of these players will already be in town to compete in the World Series of Poker Europe.
We can no doubt expect a high standard of play, but just as enticing is the chance to see some of the biggest ego’s in poker lock horns over such a long period. “The Den is a small intimate venue so we just hope it is big enough to accommodate their egos,” said a Party Poker representative.
Fatigue looks set to play an important part, with play becoming crazier as the hours tick by. “Some players have boasted that they can go the full 36 hours without a break,” claims Eddie Hearn, a feat would will no doubt go down in televised poker history. One man that is sure to feel the strain is poker commentary stalwart Jesse May, who is set to call the action for the entire 36 hour session.
The Poker Den: The Big Game III will be filmed in London on the 30th September and 1st October. It will be shown in the UK on Channel 5 early next year and will be distributed around the world shortly after.