Super Bowl Weekend Charity Poker Tournaments In Las Vegas Bring Out the Stars

Super Bowl Weekend Charity Poker Tournaments In Las Vegas Bring Out the Stars

It was an exciting weekend in Las Vegas as hundreds of thousands of football fans made their way to the city for the most-watched Super Bowl in history. As one might expect from a massive sporting event in the world's gambling capital, poker made up an integral part of the Super Bowl weekend.

In addition to packed poker rooms on The Strip and beyond, two charity poker tournaments took place one at the exclusive Leigh Steinberg Super Bowl Party benefiting the Special Olympics and one hosted by the Charity Series of Poker (CSOP) to raise money for epilepsy and both were flocked by Hollywood stars, professional athletes and Poker Hall of Famers.

Gold & Hellmuth Shine in Leigh Steinberg Charity Tournament

For the first time in the premiere annual pre-Super Bowl party's 37-year history, the Leigh Steinberg Super Bowl Party featured a poker tournament, a star-laden turbo event emceed by 2006 WSOP Main Event champion Jamie Gold with some help from all-time bracelet leader Phil Hellmuth.

As hundreds of celebrities and athletes mingled over free cocktails throughout the Ahern Hotel, a few dozen of them registered for the poker tournament tucked in an alcove near the elevators of the boutique hotel, including NFL linebacker Brandon Marshall.

The poker world, meanwhile, was represented by fellow Poker Hall of Famers Erik Seidel and Jack McClelland, as well as other game ambassadors like Maria Ho, Joey Ingram Hustler Casino Live's Nick Vertucci and Ryan Feldman and *PokerNews'*Yori Epskamp and Chad Holloway

The exclusive tournament also included actor and comedian Rob Riggle and reality TV star Princess Love, who likely hadn't even had time to open the bottle of LOUIS XIII cognac she won in the Celebrity Poker Tour Invitational II earlier in the week.

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Chatting Poker With Celebrities

PokerNews had a chance to catch up with Love during the event, who shared that she first learned how to play poker around Thanksgiving 2022.

"And it was like something just clicked," she said in an interview. "I fell in love with it the moment I learned. I went to Vegas like a week later and I started walking by the tournament ... and I was like 'let me try it out.' Three months later I won my first tournament at the Wynn, and I was like 'OK, I think I'm good at this. So let's keep going.'"

Love's other half, singer Ray J, also played the charity event but has yet to develop the same poker prowess as his wife.

"I've been trying to teach him; he will not listen," Love shared. "I'm like, why are you calling $40,000 bets with four-five offsuit? And it's like, he doesn't know how to fold, once he has a hand and he already has so much invested in it, he just bluffs it away. I'm like, now half your stack is gone. What I tell him literally goes in one ear and out the other. So there's only so much I can do."

Riggle, who helped found the Big Slick charity poker tournament with other actors like Paul Rudd and Jason Sudeikis, told PokerNews that he doesn't play poker "very much" but still is passionate about it.

"I love the game, but I don't play it very often," he said.

The Step Brothers, Hangover and 21 Jump Street star also shared his Super Bowl predictions during a table-side interview. "I can't guarantee anything in this life, including how long I'm going to be at this table, but I would say 31-21 Chiefs win."

Popular poker vlogger Ethan "Rampage" Yau was also in the mix and eventually got heads-up against NASCAR driver Jason White. Rampage finished second and got a consolation prize in the form of a $5,000 freeroll on HCL's Max Pain Monday, while the White won a seat in the Raiders Suite, something that may have helped ease the pain of getting stuck 30-plus bullets in another charity event earlier in the week.

White Takes Off Before Capps Takes Down CSOP Event

Days earlier, the CSOP hosted an "All In For Epilepsy" at View Nightclub on the 54th floor of Palms. It was here in the event overlooking the dazzling Las Vegas Strip that White kept his foot firmly on the gas peddle en route to firing 34 buy-ins that went to a good cause.

Hellmuth emceed the Feb. 8 event after making an appearance in the Celebrity Invitational at ARIA earlier in the evening, as did Seidel, McClelland, Pawn Stars' Rick Harrison and NFL legend Lawrence "LT" Taylor.

A familiar face in the poker industry, vlogger and dealer Jesse Capps, shipped the event to win a $10,000 WSOP Main Event seat with his second CSOP victory.

With so many exciting celebrity-filled poker games happening in Las Vegas, it was almost possible to lose sight of the championship football game that followed and became the most-watched program in television history.


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