Online website UB.net is joining “the best kept secret in poker” by providing sponsorship for the seventh season of the thriving Heartland Poker Tour.
The HPT is broadcast every week of the year and is accessible to more than 100million homes throughout the United States, with a new episode airing on Monday following January’s Red Rock Casino HPT tournament in Vegas.
Without giving anything away, Taiwanese professional JJ Liu, Rob ‘Veerob’ Perelman – a poker media insider – and American mixed martial arts heavyweight Heath Herring made the final table.
Team UB professional Joe ‘The Cub’ Sebok is impressed by the tour and believes the tie-up will be mutually beneficial, saying: “What HPT has been able to do is fantastic. The best kept secret in poker with their homegrown events and national television exposure, they simply get bigger and better every year out.
“To come in and back their product, we know we’ll help to shine a spotlight on HPT like never before. So, expect more players having some fun at the HPT tables and overall richer prize pools across the tour.”
UB.net is to feature prominently in all episodes of season seven, at actual HPT events and on hptpoker.com.
The website will also hold a succession of online events when players can win entry to the HPT’s live tournaments as well as hospitality, UB.net booty, and money towards accommodation and travel.
Additionally, an Ultimate Freeroll Challenge has been planned that will see the winner collect a tour pass for next year’s eighth season.
Greg Lang, HPT co-founder and executive producer, also reckons the deal is great for both partners, saying: “Tiffany Michelle and Maria Ho are fan favourites after playing a few HPT events. We’re looking forward to seeing them more often, as well as other members of Team UB.”
Lang won’t be disappointed, with UB.net’s Sebok, Brandon Cantu, Adam ‘Roothlus’ Levy and Eric Baldwin ready to make appearances – probably as targeted bounty professionals and guest commentators for televised episodes.
Casinos in Nevada, Michigan, Florida, Indiana, Oklahoma, Iowa and Colorado will host HPT tournaments this year, as hundreds of entrants aim to take home the six-figure payout.
Every final table is broadcast as two 60-minute episodes within a syndicated group of channels throughout the States, and also distributed on Dish Network and DirecTV, as well as aired in the Caribbean and Europe.
Tama’s Meskwaki Bingo Casino Hotel in Iowa is the next venue to host the $1500 plus $150 buy-in HPT Main Event on April 2-3 – and will feature Darvin Moon, the recently-named Heartland Poker Tour Ambassador who was runner-up at the 2009 World Series of Poker $10,000 no limit Texas hold’em main event.
Meanwhile, Austria is hosting a World Poker Tour tournament, with the €3200 ($4960) plus €300 ($425) buy-in main event reaching a climax on Tuesday at the Montesino Card Casino in Vienna.
A number of big names have turned up, including Dave ‘The Devilfish’ Ulliott, Tony G, James Bord, Sam Trickett and Leo Margets.
Jesse May and Mike Sexton will commentate on the final table, which is to be streamed live on the PartyPoker Blog. Viewers will be able to see the hole cards when the action begins at 13:00 CET on Tuesday.
The big spenders are also in town for a three-day €10,000 ($14,150) High-Roller tournament on Monday.
In other news, the Eastern Poker Tour Championships take place at Seabrook Greyhound Park’s Poker Room in New Hampshire tomorrow – with an expected television audience of five million across nine states on Comcast Sportsnet. The winner from 38 players will net a $12,000 World Series of Poker Package.