So we’re nearing the end of October, and the November Nine is right around the corner. This is the perfect chance to go a bit deeper into the backgrounds of the nine different players who will be participating. There is a good spread of players spanning nearly 50 years in age, and from four different countries.
Here are the current standings for the 2015 WSOP November Nine.
|1||Ofer Zvi Stern||Israel||29,800,00||74.5|
Ofer Zvi Stern: Seat 1 – Israel
Ofer Zvi Stern, at 36 years old, is the second man from Israel ever to make it to the November Nine. Before obtaining the top seat, he has only cashed out twice before. The first was during the 2008 WSOP for $5,055, where he placed 63rd in the $1,500 Limit Hold’em Shootout event. The second was from placing 34th in the PokeStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 High Roller for $44,540. However, his guaranteed $1,001,020 winnings from the November Nine will quickly bring him into the position of sixth on Israel’s all-time money list.
Pierre Neuville: Seat 2 – Belgium
Pierre Neuville is a 72-year-old citizen of Belgium, which puts him as the oldest player in the 2015 November Nine. Neuville has a lifetime of experience playing poker and began back in 1957. In 1969, he even created his own game and toy company. He later sold this to Hasbro but stayed on as the vice chairperson of the European division. Due to his high-ranking position in the company he was unable to compete in Poker tournaments, but he came back to the game after retiring in 2008. He is now at $2,174,187 in lifetime earnings with wins from the EPT6 Vilamoura, the EPT8 Copenhagen, the 2014 WSOP, and many more. His largest win to date was $385,041 at the 2014 WSOP.
Josh Beckley: Seat 3 – USA
Josh Beckley is a 24-year-old poker player from Marlton, NJ. He is at $219,526 in lifetime cash, and his biggest prize of $98,348 came from winning the 2014 Parx Casino Big Stax VII $1,500 Event. He also won $53,564 and $33,932 during the 2015 Parx Casino Big Stax X. As a respected East Coast grinder, he is sure to have a lot of support going into the competition.
Max Steinburg: Seat 4 – USA
At just 27 years old, Max Steinburg is the only bracelet winner in the November Nine. Steinburg won his gold bracelet in the 2012 WSOP Event #33 $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em for $440,238. Steinburg is from Fairfield, Iowa, and he used to grind full-time with great success. He has had multiple six-figure wins and is now at $1,936,457 in live tournament winnings. Interestingly enough, Steinburg gave up poker for daily fantasy sports for most of this past year. Oddly enough, it all came full circle after he qualified for the WSOP Main Event through playing fantasy basketball on DraftKings.
Thomas Cannuli: Seat 5 – USA
Thomas Cannuli just turned 23 in July, making him the youngest player in the November Nine. He comes from New Jersey and is known by many big names, including Sorel Mizzi, Jeff Gross, Antonio Esfandiari, and Brian Rast. To date, Cannuli is at $52,235 in live tournament earnings, and he even has some experience with the main event. During the 2014 WSOP he made $18,406 for placing in 691st place. Until now, that was his largest cash prize.
Joseph Mckeehen: Seat 6 – USA
Joe McKeehen, from Noth Wales, Pennslyvania, was one of the top contenders for the November Nine ever since he shot up to first place on day 4. He is only 24 years old but has already won $1,995,070 in various live tournaments. He won his first six-figure prize at the age of 20; $116,230 from a side event at the PCA. Even after winning the tournament he stayed in school and completed a math degree at Arcadia University. McKeenen once said, “I went back to school, so I didn’t play during school, and then, summer came, I forget what I did, and then I remember senior year, last semester of college, I went to Caesars in Atlantic City, ended up winning a big tournament there. Then I had to go back to school and drag through it for a month, and it was terrible, but after that I was so excited. And after that I just started winning things, and hooray.” McKeehen’s largest win was for $820,863 as the runner- up in last year’s Event #51: $1,500 Monster Stack. With this being his fourth WSOP he clearly came ready to win.
Patrick Chan: Seat 7 – USA
Patrick Chan, a poker player from Brooklyn, New York, is one of the many people who grind away at poker full-time and manage to make a living. He has had two six-figure wins during his career that started in 2010. He won $131,895 for taking third in the 2012 Borgata Fall Poker Open Championship, and $100,689 for coming in 12th in the2014 WSOP Event #8: $1,500 Millionaire Maker. He plays a good amount of poker, both online as well in live tournaments, and is sure to put up a solid game during the November Nine.
Federico Butteroni: Seat 8 – Italy
Federico Butteroni currently sits in 450th place on Italy’s all-time money list with $103,006 in lifetime earnings. As the second Italian to make it into the November Nine, he is assured of jumping up to the top 20 list. If he places first or second, he will actually become the number one earner in all of Italy. Butteroni has a couple notable wins, including 20th in this year’s Event #28: $1,500 Monster Stack for $45,633, and a win at the Rio Daily Deepstacks for $31,756.
Neil Blumenfield: Seat 9 – USA
Neil Blumenfield, a 61-year-old software executive, is currently President, Chief Operating Officer, and a Director of Elastic Intelligence, Inc. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from the University of California, Berkley, and still finds time to play poker on the side. Though never grinding full-time, Blumenfield’s love for poker has brought him an additional $130,468 in live tournament earnings over the past few years. In 2012, he played the WSOP main event and won $38,453 with a placing of 285th. Now three years later he has made it all the way into the November Nine.
In a few weeks, these nine players will face off to play down to a winner and see who claims the title of World Series of Poker champion. With each of these November Nine guaranteed to make at least a million dollars, most players are just getting ready to enjoy the ride and take their chance at the title.
Who do you think will walk out victorious this year? Check back for more updates as the event draws closer.