Poker History Made; Bear Awakens as PokerListings.com's Live Series Coverage Surges into Third Week

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PokerListings.com's live 2008 series coverage surged into its third week over the weekend with just another "average" World Series of Poker* weekend - six more prestigious gold bracelets awarded, almost $5 million in prize money paid out, poker history made and three more of the game's best pros rolling to victories. Leading the charge: online poker star Blair Hinkle (who made history by becoming brother #2 in the Hinkle family to take a WSOP* bracelet in 2008), and renowned live pros Max "The Italian Pirate" Pescatori, Kenny Tran, and Barry "Bear" Greenstein.

It means a lot to me. The first time it always feels great. I've never had a feeling like this before. I don't like to play a lot of tournaments but today I feel I put in 110% of myself.

PokerListings.com's live 2008 series coverage surged into its third week over the weekend with just another "average" World Series of Poker* weekend - six more prestigious gold bracelets awarded, almost $5 million in prize money paid out, poker history made and three more of the game's best pros rolling to victories.

Leading the charge: online poker star Blair Hinkle (who made history by becoming brother #2 in the Hinkle family to take a WSOP* bracelet in 2008), and renowned live pros Max "The Italian Pirate" Pescatori, Kenny Tran, and Barry "Bear" Greenstein.

Starting the weekend off on the history-making note was Hinkle, who ran to a win in Event 23, $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em, in dominating style, taking not only $507,563 for the win but more importantly earning back bragging rights at the family dinner table.

His brother Grant - who Blair credits along with his grandmother for getting him started in poker - had already scored a bracelet of his own in Event 2, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em, making the Hinkle brothers the first-ever brothers to earn a gold bracelet in the same year.

Said Hinkle in his exclusive PokerListings.com post-win interview: "Well it means probably more than just winning. We're setting a record here, and he was the one who got me going in poker besides my grandmother, it was definitely a family thing. So I'm just really happy we could both win in the same year. It's been a blast."

Keeping the momentum rolling were three more of the game's best players, who marched handily to titles of their own - the marquee event being the $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em Heads-Up Championship taken by feared high-stakes cash game ruler and Full Tilt Poker pro Kenny Tran.

Tran worked his way through seven grueling matches for the title, including tough battles against familiar poker faces Erick Lindgren and Brandon Adams plus aggressive Internet young guns Jonathan Jaffe and Alec Torelli.

Said Tran in his exclusive PokerListings.com post-win interview: "It means a lot to me. The first time it always feels great. I've never had a feeling like this before. I don't like to play a lot of tournaments but today I feel I put in 110% of myself."

Rounding the weekend out and further cementing 2008 as the year of the poker pro were two of the most popular players in poker - Max "The Italian Pirate" Pescatori, who captured his second career gold bracelet in Event 24, $2,500 Pot-Limit Hold'em/Omaha, and well-known high-stakes poker vet Barry Greenstein, who took down the old-school favorite $1,500 Seven-Card Razz.

Exclusive post-win interviews with both pros - and every bracelet winner at this year's Series - are available in the PokerListings.com player interview section.

Live 2008 WSOP* coverage continues daily at PokerListings.com with updates, blogs, player interviews and photos directly from the Rio for all ongoing events.

The feature attraction on Monday night was undoubtedly the power-packed final table of Event 28, $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha w/Rebuys, which filled its seats with Phil Hellmuth, Adam Hourani, Daniel Negreanu, Kiril Gerasimov, Johnny Chan, John Juanda, David Benyamine, Brian "tsarrast" Rast and Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond.

Other highly anticipated events kicking off or wrapping up in the first few days this week are Event 30, the $10,000 World Championship of Limit Hold'em, Event 31, $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em Six-handed, and Event 33, the $10,000 World Championship of Seven-Card Stud Hi-Lo Split Eight-or-Better.

Live coverage is, as always, capped off by the PokerListings.com daily video recap with host Amy Macbride, bringing viewers up to speed on all the day's key hands, big winners and talking points.

Visit the PokerListings.com World Series coverage section to access all features.

About PokerListings.com:
PokerListings.com (http://www.pokerlistings.com) was launched in 2003 and quickly became the largest online poker guide in the world. It provides poker players with in-depth reviews of all major online poker rooms, the world's highest sign-up bonuses and promotions, breaking poker news and detailed content on strategy, tours, tournaments and the game's best players. PokerListings.com also has the best live poker tournament reporting on the Web, with unrivaled year-round coverage from the World Series, the World Poker Tour, the European Poker Tour and more.

(*World Series of Poker and WSOP are trademarks of Harrah's License Company, LLC ('Harrahs'). Harrah's does not sponsor or endorse, and is not associated or affiliated with PokerListings.com or its products, services, promotions or tournaments.)

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