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PokerStars Million Dollar Challenge continues Nov. 22

16 November 2009

LOS ANGELES, California -- (PRESS RELEASE) -- The Million Dollar Challenge is set to continue its first season with a brand new episode on Sunday, Nov. 22, right after NFL on FOX coverage.* The show's debut episode was the most watched poker television show in U.S. history with more than four million viewers tuning in, beating out the WSOP final table on ESPN. The show has become so successful, that it was quickly added to for fans to re-watch streaming episodes.

Fresh off of a seeing a poker-playing priest win $100,000 and watching a U.S. Army National Guard sergeant walk away from the show with $25,000 in his pocket, two more contestants will try to navigate their way to the $1,000,000 grand prize.

Oluwasegun "Big Mike" Odumuyiwa, a 35-year old music manager from Northville, MI, who also goes by "The Nigerian Nightmare," is hoping to win the money to take care of his late brother's family. A basketball and football star at Eastern Illinois University, Odumuyiwa was signed as a free agent by the Dallas Cowboys, but was injured and never played in an NFL game

Brian Barboza, a 31-year old wine and liquor salesman from Raynham, MA., is hoping to win enough on the show to buy his way into the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event. He has spent hours on honing his game, and was happy to surprised his friends by beating thousands of other players to win his spot on the show. A huge Boston Celtics fan, Barboza has been playing poker for six years.

Both Barboza and Odumuyiwa have a long road ahead of them. First, they'll face off against one of the show's celebrity defenders: Super Bowl Champion Jerome Bettis, four-time NBA Champion John Salley, UFC champion Tito Ortiz or Playboy Playmate of the Year Jayde Nicole, for a chance to win a trip to the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure in the Bahamas. Win in Round One and the task gets even harder -- a heads-up match against a Team Pro such as World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event Champion Chris Moneymaker, Barry Greenstein or Vanessa Rousso with $25,000 on the line. Should the contestants win two matches, they'll have a tough decision: take the $25,000 and walk away or risk it for a chance at $100,000 in a heads up match against Negreanu.

In each of the opening rounds, the contestants will have help from four-time WSOP bracelet winner and poker's all-time tournament earnings leader Daniel Negreanu, who will coach the contestants against the celebrity and the pro.

To win a seat on the Million Dollar Challenge and have a chance at the $1,000,000 prize, players can enter free online tournaments at and a video. Each person selected will receive roundtrip airfare and accommodations to the show's taping in Los Angeles for themselves and two friends.

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