The €2,200 buy-in Nordic Poker Championships will be awash with some of the Nordic region’s elite poker players who will be vying for the lion’s share of the massive seven-figure prize pool.
Only open to players who have Nordic passports, or residential status in a Nordic country, the Nordic Poker Championships will call the Grandior Hotel Prague home from December 14-18 and we can hardly contain our excitement. Someone else who is eagerly looking forward to the event is our very own Norwegian star, Johnny Lodden.
“I really hope this going be a massive success. If we can get 3,000 Norwegians to Dublin during Norwegian Championship, it should be also be possible to get a lot down to beautiful Prague right before Christmas as this is a tournament where you can meet up with all the best from Nordic countries and to also crown a winner who can call themselves the Nordic King or Queen. We need good numbers for this if people want events like this in the future.”
Lodden has travelled the world playing in the biggest poker tournaments and with more than $2.77 million in live tournament winnings, it is safe to say he knows his way around a poker table. Recently, we picked Lodden’s brain in regards to who he thinks the seven best Nordic poker players are, and these are the septet of grinders.
Finland’s Juha Helppi has been touring the world playing high-stakes poker tournaments for what seems like forever. He has starred on many televised poker events and Lodden says Helppi is “rock solid,” which is probably the understatement of the year. With almost $7.1 million in live poker tournament winnings, Helppi is number one in Finland in terms of money won.
A little trivia for you: Helppi is a high-level paintball player who captained the Finnish national paintball champions in 1997, 2003, 2007 and 2008!
Henrik Tollefsen of Norway is also the “star of Macau” according to Lodden thanks to exceptional record in what is sometimes referred to as the Vegas of China. Tollefsen is primarily an online tournament grinder but also excels in the live environment where he has more than $1 million in winnings, helped by the fact he won a Norwegian Poker Championships in 2009 and another in 2016. Will he head to Prague to try and win a third title among his fellow Nordic players?
Lodden says that Patrik Antonius “doesn’t need an introduction because he’s the biggest star from Nordic countries.” That much is true; Antonius is seen as a poker legend. Dashing good looks and his fearless style of play have led to parts of the community calling Antonius “God!” Antonius is almost up to $6.8 million in live poker tournaments and countless millions more from his live and online cash game exploits.
Sweden’s Martin Jacobson is described as Lodden as a former World champion who is one of the best players on tour. Jacobson was already regarded as one of the game’s elite tournament players before he triumphed in the 2014 World Series of Poker Main Event, a result that netted him $10 million. The talented Swede now has almost $16.5 million in liv tournament winnings.
Described by Lodden as “a good guy that believes he is one of the best,” Denmark’s Theo Jorgenson has competed at the highest level for more than a decade. While Jorgenson has an incredible talent for no-limit hold’em tournaments, he is equally as adept at playing pot-limit Omaha and has a WSOP Europe PLO bracelet to his name. Jorgensen has almost $3.8 million in live tournament winnings.
Hyper-aggressive Viktor Blom, affectionately known as “Isildur1,” burst onto the online poker scene “playing $500/$1,000 hold’em and PLO and was crushing everyone” says Lodden who went on to claim “Blom is probably the player from the Nordics with the most poker talent.”
Blom is better known for his online cash game playing, but he also has several online poker titles and $1.725 million in live tournament winnings, the bulk of which stem from his $1,254,400 score for winning a $100,000 buy-in Super High Roller in 2012.
Sweden’s Mikael Thuritz is, according to Lodden, “an old time legend that still crushes the game.” A natural talent, Thuritz may be better known to you as “ChaoRen160” or “punting-peddler” from his high stakes online cash game exploits; Thuritz has also been a regular in the biggest cash games played in Macau.
Like fellow Swede Blom, Thuritz has more than $1.7 million in live tournament winnings although he rarely plays live events. Thuritz’s last cash game in November 2016 and you have to go back to the 2011 WSOP to find his previous in the money finish.
The Nordic Poker Championships take place at the Grandior Hotel in picturesque Prague from December 14-18, 2017. Commanding a €2,200 buy-in, but guaranteeing that at least €1,000,000 will be in the prize pool, the Nordic Poker Championships is going to be huge.
Keep an eye on the Live Events tab in the partypoker tournament lobby for details of the satellites into this eagerly anticipated event. Lodden will be there, will you?
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