PokerStars The Big Game on Tour Airs First Episode

Poker legends and amateurs brush shoulders on the new season of PokerStars’ iconic show, as first episode is released and available to watch for free on the operator’s YouTube channel.
PokerStars The Big Game on Tour Airs First Episode
May 13, 2024

Following a 12 year hiatus, one of the most successful poker shows of all time has reemerged, as The Big Game On Tour aired its first episode on the PokerStars YouTube channel.

The highly anticipated return of the show was announced some time ago, as PokerStars filmed the new season last December during the NAPT Las Vegas, when all the biggest names in the game were in town.

The first episode of the new season brought us the first of the two loose cannons – who had to audition for their part on the show – as well as a range of familiar faces like Phil Hellmuth, Lex Veuldhuis, Alan Keating, and Jennifer Tilly.

The anticipation was definitely worth it, as the show kept all of its flare and the addition of Alan Keating to the initial lineup made things a lot more interesting from the very first hand.

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Star-Studded Lineup for Big Game’s Return

The PokerStars Big Game has been one of the most successful shows in TV poker history, and much of that came from PokerStars bringing together some of the biggest legends of the game and pitting them against amateur players dubbed “loose cannons.”

The first episode of The Big Game on Tour featured the first of the loose cannons, a podcast host by the name of Nikki Limo who actually dabbles in poker quite a bit.

Yet, her poker skills and renown fade in comparison to the rest of the cast, which includes the most decorated tournament poker player of all time Phil Hellmuth, PokerStars Team Pro member Lex Veldhuis, and high stakes poker legend Alan Keating.

They are joined by Jennifer Tilly and Arden Cho, who brought the flare of Hollywood and leveled the gender gap at the table, completing a lineup that guarantees for great TV on the first episode.

Spoiler Alert: If you haven’t see the episode, the remainder of the article includes spoilers!

Alan Keating Comes Out Swinging

If there was one thing we could guarantee, it was that Alan Keating would be the most active player at the table during the first season of The Big Game on Tour.

From the very first hand, Keating made sure to keep his reputation intact by getting involved in nearly every pot, re-raising the pros and amateurs alike, and putting on quite a show in the process.

Despite Nikki carrying the official title of “loose cannon,” it was Keating who truly played the part and made sure that every hand was eventful in some way.

Keating got involved with the cannon very early and bluffed off thousands of dollars into her straight, only to lose plenty more bluffing Jennifer Tilly a bit later, and even more when his ten-high flush ran into Lex’ King-high flush.

It was not a great day at the office for mister Keating, who ended up losing big on the first episode despite being the only player to buyin for $250k compared to everyone else’s $50k.

Hellmuth Tightens Up, Veldhuis Wins Big

For a casual poker fan, the presence of Phil Hellmuth at the table was perhaps the most interesting part about The Big Game on Tour episode one, but that presence was quite a meek one, in the words of Jennifer Tilly.

The 17-time WSOP bracelet winner entered just a few pots, mostly limping and calling small raises, only to fold his cards as soon as he could.

Having barely gotten involved, Phil lost just over $4k and will be looking to get into more action in future episodes, unless he decides that the TV time alone is worth flicking in an occasional blind.

Lex Veldhuis, on the other hand, got quite involved in the first episode, and won big pots off Cho and Keating, winning over $118k in this first episode alone and asserting his dominance over the table.

The amateur at the table, Nikki Limo ended the night up $27k, mostly thanks to Alan Keating trying to bluff her on two occasions when she had the goods.

More to Come from Big Game on Tour

The debut episode of PokerStars The Big Game on Tour was quite a fun one for both casual and hardcore fans of the game, and one you should definitely check out if you haven’t already.

Over the next couple of months, we will have plenty of chances to see more Big Game action, as season one is made up of 10 episodes that should bring just as much action as the first one.

Moving forward, we will be waiting for news about the filming of the next season, along with news of any American PokerStars Live 2024 stops.

In the meantime, make sure to tune in to PokerStars YouTube channel every week and watch PokerStars The Big Game on Tour regularly to find out just how well the loose cannons will be able to match up to the more experienced and trained poker players taking part on the show.

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