Paradise Poker Online

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Paradise Poker

Updated 2012 – appears to be shut down and out of business.
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The following review of paradise poker is now out of date. Check our real online poker reviews for current poker site reviews. Historical Review

The Paradise Poker site was one of the early favorites. It was fun to play there as they had great tournaments and home of the hugely popular million dollar freeroll. Paradise Poker is not flashy, like some of the other sites but they are a great place to play, have a wide range of poker tournaments, plenty of traffic and excellent game selection. Customer support is responsive and helpful.

Taking my 1st free shot at one million dollars at Paradise Poker.

Wish me luck everyone! This Saturday, December 3rd Paradise is holding their 2nd free million dollar poker tournament and I’ve got a seat! Sure, I’ve only got to beat out somewhere around 5,000+ players but hey, most freeroll tournaments have 2000 players for a total prize pool of $25 bucks!

The tournament structure at Paradise Poker was awesome!

2500 in starting chips and the blinds started out at 5 / 10. Each round was 30 minutes long, so you had plenty of chips compared to the starting blinds and you had plenty of time. There was plenty of time to feel out the table and get an idea of how you should play. Top notch multi table tournament setup. They also employed antes when the blinds reached 100/200 which I really liked. I’m aggressive pre-flop anyway so the more money in the middle for me to take the better. The antes went up slowly but did add a little juice in the middle for everyone to compete for.

I had a great table position starting out.

The two guys who acted after me were both away from their computer. Not only did I get to steal their blinds uncontested a few times, I more importantly received 3 total hands as the button in each round! It was a huge advantage and once I switched gears I did build my stack with pure aggression and stealing small and medium sized pots from position.

About three hours in, I’m dealt QQ in the small blind. Suddenly, the player who had been away for the past three hours arrives at the table and pushes all in under the gun for his remaining $1052 in chips. I had been stealing his money all night and figured he just realized the tournament was going, logged in to see he had lost over half of his chips and was just saying ‘screw it’ and pushing in. I quickly call with pocket queens and he turns over Ace 9 offsuit.

I’m ahead until the river with the ace falls and I double him up. The next hand I receive ATs and again I raise, he moves all in again and I muck it. I don’t know if he is an idiot or not, but I didn’t want to call off most of my chips with ATs, even if I was in the lead. This turns out to be exceptionally bad for me later as he bluffs me out of a pretty large pot when my AK doesn’t improve and he bets 90% of his stack into a a fairly large pot that I’ve bluffed at twice with my unimproved AK.

My stack was up and then down all tournament long.

I would go from a relatively short stack at the table to near the chip lead at the table, and then back down, over and over again. I couldn’t maintain an acquired chip stack until I  moved to around a 7 or 8, and then I would employ an all-in strategy that would build my stack back up, which would then slowly get whittled back down. It was an aggressive tournament pretty much the entire time. Most pots were raised pre flop.

I made the money!

It was a huge field! 4871 players and I finished in the first money tier of $50 bucks. I played and concentrated for over 6.5 hours to bust out 291st. I liked the fact that I made it deep into the tournament, my multi-table tournament skills are improving.

The tournament started out unlike most freerolls. I’m sure it is the huge 1st place prize of 1,000,000 bucks that made most everyone play different than the typical types of freerolls that most of us have experienced with, with idiots going all in with any 2 cards at anytime. My table played so tightly that we didn’t lose a single player for over an hour and a half.

This tournament at Paradise Poker was a great experience

Even though I’m pretty disappointed with my finish. I got all in with Queens and someone turned over Aces and then I imagine I was fairly tired and maybe on tilt when I re-raised a somewhat aggressive player all-in with pocket 6’s. He called with queens and I didn’t get lucky. Good tournament but I sure wish I had made the top 10, where I’d be guaranteed at least $10,000 and my shot at one million dollars.

If you want good multi-table tournaments, consider Paradise Poker. If you’re looking for a new poker room then you should take a look at this great online poker room. You can go to Poker School with Caprice, your personal poker coach.
Play at Paradise Poker and get a Kick Ass deposit bonus 25% up to $100!

P.S. In the 1st free million dollar poker tournament, one player tried to cheat paradise poker.

NOTE: The Paradise Poker $1,000,000 Tournament is a free poker tournament. Amateurs and veterans alike are invited to play in the next million dollar freeroll.

Before we get to the online poker cheating, let me give you a quick overview and background of how the Free Million Dollar Poker Tournament at Paradise Poker works.

This is the poker tournament you’ve seen advertised on TV, offering you a free seat in a poker tournament with a Million Dollar first place prize, held online at Paradise 1st place wins a million dollars and 2nd through 10th are guaranteed $10,000 each. It’s an awesome freeroll.

Here is how it works. If you are new to Paradise Poker all you have to do is create a play money account at Paradise Poker. Once you create your play money account you receive a ticket into one of three daily free roll qualifiers. You don’t have to deposit a single penny, you don’t have to give them a credit card, nothing like that. Just create an account and take your seat in one of the three daily free qualifiers.

If you finish in the top 10 of the free qualifier you win a seat into the Free Million Dollar Poker Tournament.

THE Paradise Poker SCANDAL – Player ”ZapAA” busted for violating Paradise Poker’s T’s and C’s. Looses 1.3 Million in Chips before the 1st hand of the final table is even dealt.

The million dollar freeroll starts out online, just like all the other multi-table online poker tournaments. The tournament runs like normal online until the final table is set, with the top 10 players remaining.

Once the final 10 players are set, the tournament is paused, chip counts are taken. The remaining 10 players are whisked away to a secret tropical paradise to play the final table out live. The final table is taped for television and Paradise Poker plans to air the event on national tv.

When ”ZapAA” arrived in Paradise, he looked way too young to be playing poker, he’d easily get asked for an ID trying to get into a bar or even buying smokes…

Hiding your age online might be relatively easy, but when you’re sitting face to face it’s a bit more difficult. According to Paradise Poker’s Terms and Conditions, you must be at least 21 to play online poker.

We haven’t been able to find anything official from Paradise Poker on this event as I imagine they want to keep it fairly quiet, but the rumor mill says he was only 17 years old!

The seventeen year old had accumulated 1.37 Million chips, which was third overall going into the final table. Here are the final table standings before ”ZapAA” was eliminated as reported in numerous public forums and newsgroups from Professor77, aka Mark Pinsker. Mark was 8th in chips going into the final table.

Here are the final table starting chip counts prior to uncovering that ZapAA was only 17 years old as posted in numerous online forums by Professor 77.
1 sn-Ale — Mike Darweesh 2,720,000
2 boon8 — Lee Biddulph 1,580,000
3 ZapAA — Brian Carney 1,370,000
4 StiMi — Christopher Steudle 1,360,000
5 judgetim — Tim Williams 1,090,000
6 mastershake — Davis Pool 718,889
7 LordTranIII — Thu V. Tran 506,388
8 Professor77 — Mark Pinsker 403,944
9 jerryfoam — Gerald Anderson 188,672
10 docshoggs — Steven A. Detrick 34,705

Blinds: 12,000 / 24,000
Antes: 3,000

This is very interesting – Check out the “Official Results From at Paradise Poker” Notice that they say ‘This is the Top 10 at the final table, but only have 9 players listed! They also don’t have ZapAA listed at all…

As of 10/3/05 they still have the words ‘Top 10’ underlined!

SPECIAL NOTE – I checked the page on 10/5/2005 and they have updated it with a picture of the winner, and they removed the references to ‘the top 10′, but we snagged a screen shot from the 2nd of October, 2005.

ZapAA’ played a great game up to that point but you’ve got to be old enough to holdem, even online.

Paradise Poker disqualified ZapAA from the tournament, removed his 1.3 million in chips and we heard through the grapevine that they donated his $10,000 prize to Hurricane Katrina Charities, but don’t hold us to that.

We hope this isn’t a black eye for Paradise, because Paradise Poker is a great online poker room.

I’m sure ZapAA isn’t the only underage online poker player prowling the virtual card rooms… he just happened to do very well in a major tournament that dealt him a hand he couldn’t beat – the fact that you had to play face to face to win it.

When is the next Paradise Poker Million Dollar Freeroll?

*Never – this is historical review 😉 July 22nd, 2006 – The Next Million Dollar FreeRoll at Paradise

You’ve probably seen the commercials on TV for the free million dollar poker tournament at Paradise There are three daily qualifiers running each and every day that are completely free. All you need to do to play in your first event is to download the Paradise Poker Software and create your account. No deposit is required.

If it’s before 9PM EST you can still play in one today, if not you can play tomorrow. If you finish in the top 10 you’re qualified for the Million Dollar Tournament. Pretty tempting offer.
(25% deposit bonus, deposit $500 to maximize your bonus).

More Free Million Dollar Poker Tournament Details – read all at

How do I win my seat?
Players MUST win their seat into the main event, through one of the FREE daily heats.

Three heats every day. Each heat will be titled “FreeMillion” and will be FREE to enter. You can find these tournaments listed under the Million Tab in our Tournament Lobby.
The 3 daily “FreeMillion” Heats will start at the times posted below and will award seats as listed:

4pm ET = Top 10 players advance to $1,000,000 main event.
9pm ET = Top 15 players advance to $1,000,000 main event.
1am ET = Top 20 players advance to $1,000,000 main event.
* 9pm, 2am, 6am London time

– – > Tournament registration will open 2 hours prior to the posted tournament start time! Register early to ensure yourself a seat.

– – > Players can enter any Heat they wish and as many as they wish (subject to Paradise Poker’s terms and conditions ). Each Heat can accept a maximum of 4,000 players.

– – > Players are only eligible to win 1 seat into the $1,000,000 main event.

– – > The Million Dollar Freeroll is open to anyone that has a real money account (no deposit necessary for your first Heat attempt).

Can I enter more than once?

After your first free heat attempt, you can enter further heats by collecting “Million Points”. Collect 100 points and you will receive a pop-up message stating that you are again eligible to enter another heat of your choice.

“Million Points” will start getting counted, starting at zero, for all players, as of 12:01am Eastern on August 29th.

$1,000,000 Online Main Event

The $1,000,000 main event will take place on December 3rd at 2pm Eastern (7pm London time).

Note: Given the number of entries, this tournament will be played over 2 days (December 3rd and 4th). Play will start at 2pm Eastern and will continue until Midnight Eastern (5am London) at which time the tournament will be paused at the beginning of the next break. Play will resume on Sunday, December 4th at 2pm EDT and will continue until only 10 players remain.

Final 10 will play face-to-face in Paradise!

The 10 players at the final table will be taken on an all-expenses paid luxury vacation to an exotic Paradise location to finish the remaining portion of the tournament face-to-face in front of the tv cameras. The winner will walk away one million dollars richer.

The live final table is tentatively scheduled to take place mid-January 2006.

Full Prize Pool Payouts
First Place = $1,000,000 (plus a free vacation for two to a mystery tropical location)
2nd-10th = $10,000 (plus a free vacation for two to a mystery tropical location)
11th = $1,000 12th-50th = $500
51st-100th = $100
101st -500th = $50

TOTAL PAYOUTS: $1,150,000
Thanks and we’ll see you at the tables!

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See more poker reviews.