One of the most popular online poker games are NLHE (6 max). With six or less players at a table, the action is increased as even the tightest player must play marginal starting hands to stave off the blinds. Position is key; pairs and ace high win pots, and when monsters hit you can get paid off big.
Unused chairs were stacked two and three high, creating a strange look to the normally crowded tables. With only six players to a table, pros would inevitably collect in bunches. Mike Matusow with Barry Greenstein; Johnny Chan with Dewey Tomko and Randy Jensen; Dags, The Grinder, and Kid Poker. Mike Caro and Cyndi Violette immediately got their chips in the middle, but both had played Q-10 for straights and a chopped pot.
The day belonged to one of the great personalities of poker, Daniel Negreanu. Negreanu is the polar opposite of Phil Ivey when it comes to behavior. While Ivey is stone, cold silent and constantly darting his eyes, Negreanu provides non-stop banter and constantly darts everywhere. Between autographs, photos, massages, back adjustments, and sprints through the hall, Negreanu would raise pots and take them down. Someone new would move to the table, only to be busted by Negreanu. He would make 90x raises of a big blind, he would name a player’s cards then raise. It was a magical day for him, finishing in the chip lead with $159k. Those chips were held by sixty players at the start of the day, and now they’re in Negreanu’s bag. Gavin Smith is right there with $128k, and Dutch Boyd also has over $100k.
Ninety out of 824 entrants made the cash, and thirty-nine players will return to their same seats Saturday afternoon, all chasing Kid Poker and the $475,712.