Full Tilt “Professionals” to take on Team PokerStars in series of heads-up matches set to go down in poker history
What started out as some harmless banter on Twitter has quickly turned into one of the most eagerly anticipated online match-ups in recent history. Gus Hansen and Daniel Negreanu, long-time poker rivals, have finally agreed to put their money where their mouthes are after years of verbal sparring and the pair have arranged a series of heads-up battles between Hansen’s Team Full Tilt and Negreanu’s PokerStars Pros. The matches will be hosted online by Full Tilt and are scheduled to take place next Sunday 10 March, with the first one kicking-off at 3pm (UK Time). Adding to the sense of occasion, as the whole heads-up series will be taking place, the excitement of the EPT London will be unfolding in the background.
With both line-ups now confirmed, on paper it looks like the teams are fairly well balanced. Full Tilt’s team of “Professionals” consists of its captain Hansen, plus Tom Dwan and Viktor Blom, while PokerStars elite team, includes Negreanu, Isaac Haxton and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier. Practically too tough to call, if we had to make a decision right now we would probably go with Team Full Tilt’s, given Dwan’s incredible start to the new year and Blom’s victory over Haxton in the recent $1 Million Challenge on PokerStars. But we all know poker and what it will come down to in the end is who brings their best game on the day.
Similar to the PokerStars SuperStar Showdown format, each of the heads-up matches will take place over three simultaneous freezeout tables and the player who wins at least two out of the three tables will be declared the winner. Similarly, the winning team will be the one that wins at least two of the three matches. To sweeten the deal even further, as well as each individual match winner collecting the $50k scalp from their opponent, the losing poker room will also donate $10k in tournament buy-ins to each member of the winning team. Now all that remains is to wait like everyone else.
Here are the three match-ups:
Match 1: Viktor “Isildur1” Blom vs Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier
Match2: Tom “durrrr” Dwan vs Isaac “luvthewnba” Haxton
Match 3: Gus Hansen vs Daniel “Kid Poker” Negreanu