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Poker News | World Poker News

Event #2 Winner Paul Lee Grinds His Way to the Day 4 Lead

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Five Star Event #2 Winner Paul Lee has turned the free seat he won into the Day 4 chiplead on a day where WSOP Main Event champion Phil Hellmuth went backwards while Juan Carlos Mortensen passed him by into third place.

Six tables worked down to three on a short day of only 5 ½ hours of play. Patrik Antonius was extremely short stacked but doubled up quickly as he scrambled to survive. James "KrazyKanuck" Worth finally put the Adonis of Poker to bed, his pocket kings holding up against Antonius' A-J (54th, $46,010).

Day 3 chipleader Phil Hellmuth had a day of being second best as he bled chips throughout the afternoon. David Levi doubled up once on a king-high board with A-K to Hellmuth's K-Q. He then grabbed 1M in chips from Hellmuth with A-K vs Hellmuth's A-J. Sorel Mizzi doubled through Hellmuth for another 750k with a flopped set that turned into a full house. Hellmuth survived the late onslaught but is back to 19th place with 738k.

Some of the most promising players came up short. Tim Pham flopped the nut flush to finish Jared "TheWacoKidd" Hemby's day (44th, $61,880). Justin "ZEEjustin" Bonomo couldn't put two big hands together. He doubled through Paul Lee with A[h]-K[h] vs A[c]-2[c] then doubled up Robert Wazelle a few hands later. On a board of Q[c]-10[h]-9[d], Wazelle moved all-in with K[d]-10[d]. Bonomo made a tough call with A[s]-10[c] and felt good with 3[s] came on the turn. The dealer burned then showed J[s], and the four-outer came through for Wazelle. Paul Lee finally busted Bonomo in 35th ($77,350).

Juan Carlos Mortensen started the just under 1M, and his afternoon was destined for those chips to be stacked and moved repeatedly. He got down to 480k then doubled through CK Hua with pocket kings vs Hua's jacks.

He won a massive pot late that solidified his chances to reach the final table. Mortensen raised in the cut-off, then Raymond Davis made it 150k to go from the small blind. He called, and the flop came 10[c]-7[c]-6[c], and Davis bet 200k only to see Mortensen raise another 876k as he moved all-in. Davis called with the nut flush draw and a gutshot with A[c]-8[h] to Mortensen's 7[s]-7[d]. 3[d]-Q[s] sent the 2.5M pot to Mortensen, and Davis was down to 700k. Davis continued south and is 26th of twenty-seven players with 274k. Mortensen finished third with 2.43M.

While the room was filled with tournament veterans, Paul Lee has earned his stripes through the long, hard, grind of lower buy-in events in California. He's cashed 69 times, with most being in the hundreds to less than $5k until a WSOP Circuit event for $26,772 and last week's $2k event for $206,795. He put that hard earned experience to good use today.

Lee started the day with 540k and quickly built it to close to 900k before he won a massive pot early to jump into contention. He raised under the gun, and Roland de Wolfe joined Loi Phan in the hand. The cards came J[d]-6[d]-4[h], and Lee checked. De Wolfe bet 80k, Phan called, then Lee raised to 280k. de Wolfe folded, then Phan pondered the call for several minutes while Lee bantered in his ear. Phan eventually called, then Lee moved all-in blind for 594k more. Phan again thought long and hard after 5[s] hit the board but eventually called with A[h]-J[c] for top pair top kicker. He was drawing dead as Lee showed the other two jacks for top set and began stacking his 1.9M in chips.

Through the rest of the afternoon, he almost doubled his stack to end with 3.6M in chips. Thursday will be played down to the WPT TV table, six final players who are after the $3.97M top prize. The final twenty-seven men and their chipstacks:

Paul Lee 3.6M
Kirk Morrison 2.98M
Carlos Mortensen 2.43M
Sorel Mizzi 2.26M
Thomas Wahlroos 1.85M
Jake Minter 1.57M
Ben Johnson 1.28M
Tim Phan 1.27M
Scott Fischman 1.27M
David Levi 1.26M
Guy Laliberte 1.23M
Grant Lang 1.20M
Mike Wattel 1.06M
Loi Phan 1.01M
David Baker 983k
Tommy Vu 830k
Can Kim Hua 760k
Richard Anthony 755k
Phil Hellmuth 738k
Adeeb Harb 735k
Paul Wasicka 581k
James Krazy Kanuck Worth 556k
Roland de Wolfe 460k
Jimmy Ngoc Tran 458k
Robert Wazelle 284k
Raymond Davis 274k
Tom Pniak 270k

Here's how the tables look for Day 5:

Table 59 (7.81M) Hey shorty, it's your birthday! This is a very light table with four of the bottom five in chips warming a chair including Roland de Wolfe (460k) and short stacks Raymond Davis (274k) and Tom Pniak (270k). Jake Minter (1.57M) shares the table with four others with 1.0M-1.3M, including Loi Phan (1.01M) and Scott Fischman (1.27M). Fischman may be the one to watch early at this table.

Table 61 (13.47M) It isn't quite double Table 59 but it's close. This table has four of the five top in chips. It's some kind of strong lineup: Thomas Wahlroos (seat 1, 1.85M), Juan Carlos Mortensen (seat 2, 2.43M), Paul Lee (seat 3, 3.6M), Sorel Mizzi (seat 6, 2.26M), two-time $5k event winner Adeeb Harb (seat 6, 735k), and James "KrazyKanuck" Worth (556k). If I was Lyle Berman, I just might make this the WPT TV table and be done with it.

Table 62 (10.69M) It's hard to rival Table 61, but this is a group of patient and strong players. Kirk Morrison (2.98M) will be seated on the right side of the dealer while Phil Hellmuth (738k), will be on the dealer's left. The two will be staring at CK Hua (760k), David Levi (1.26M), Paul Wasicka (581k) and Tommy Vu (830k).

I'll take CK Hua, Scott Fischman, Sorel Mizzi, Juan Carlos Mortensen, Adeeb Harb, and Phil Hellmuth to reach the WPT TV table. These six may not make it, but anyone surviving Thursday will have definitely earned it. There will be no pretenders left at the end of the WPT Championship.


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