Jake Balsiger, a 21-year-old college student at Arizona State University, had a chance to become the youngest world champion in poker history. However, he ended up finshing in third place, which paid a nice consolation prize of nearly $4 million.
Balsiger lasted nearly 11 hours in a three-handed marathon that set the record as the longest span ever recorded without a bustout in the Main Event Championship.
After he was eliminated at 5 am on October 31, 2012, I shot this short video of Balsiger at his press conference at the Rio in Las Vegas. Considering the battle he’d endured and the disappointment he must have felt at having played so long, and still finished third (he actually had the chip lead at one point), Balsiger appears remarkably positive and upbeat.
I think this video is the perfect testament to a remarkable young man who enjoyed an incredible once-in-a-lifetime run at the World Series of Poker.
Note to readers: I shot this video on Monday night, just as Michael Esposito busted out of the 2012 world poker championship in seventh place. The video shows Esposito leaving the ESPN stage area after being inteviewed by Kara Scott. He is escorted out the back door and to waiting family and freinds, as well as a press conference. The WSOP’s Seth Palansky, who accompanies Esposito in this short video, tries to make the walk a little less disappointing.
The short-lived Players Television Network debuted at the 2005 World Series of Poker.
I was asked to moderate two panel discussions, which were later broadcast via “On Demand.” The first show was on the late great poker legend Stu Ungar. SEE STU UNGAR FEATURE HERE The second show (featured here) was a panel discussion about the business of online poker.
I wasn’t at all prepared to assume the role of moderator. I recall leaving the rigors of my job at the WSOP for an hour our so, getting abruptly fitted with a microphone, and then walking out and taking a seat in front of a live studio audience and rolling television cameras with no script.
The good thing about the unrehearsed format is that everything was spontaneous. The bad thing is the show could have been much crisper had I been prepared. Looking back now, I certainly would have asked more penetrating questions than what appear here.
Fortunately, the three guests who appeared on the online poker segment were outstanding. Tony Cabot (one one of the world’s top legal experts on online gambling), Mike Sexton (then a consultant to PartyPoker), and Dan Goldman (then a consultant to PokerStars) were all in top form.
Even though this discussion might seem dated now seven years later, it holds up remakrably well over time. Many of the things discussed that day have happened, just as predicted.
Here’s that panel discussion from 2005 that runs about 40 minutes in length.
The following interview was conducted on September 30, 2012 in front of the Hotel La Majestic Barriere in Cannes, France. Swedish writer and journalist Rikard Aberg is one of the game’s most inquisitive interviewers, as can be seen in this exchange.
I like Aberg’s style which is largely conversational. He asks about several subjects — including health and fitness, goals and aspirations, Stu Ungar, and of course — the future of WSOP Europe.
These videos — of myself, Jennifer Tilly, Phil Hellmuth, Steve Dannenman, Brandon Cantu and others are posted at a Swedish-language site. They will also be available at PokerTube shortly.
This marks my sixth straight year at World Series of Poker Europe.
Our first four years took place in London, England. Last year, we moved to the south of France to the resort city of Cannes, located on the fabulous French Riviera — which makes this the second occasion WSOP Europe has taken place in France. All events take place at the Hotel La Majestic Barriere, which also plays host to many events surrounding the Cannes Film Festival.
Here are a few short video clips of the poker action, courtesy of CalvinAyre.com: