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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP2009 | The Works

Main Event, Day 2B – Packed House

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It's about thirty minutes prior to the start of Day 2B at the World Series of Poker Main Event and the floor is frantically looking for three misplaced bags containing chips for players. They yell for the dealers to look for bags with certain players names on it. They repeat this every couple of minutes. I'm guessing they eventually found them but it got me to wondering, what would they do if they lost a bag.

I talked to Steve, my friendly floor man, and after giving me a long spiel that, “We would NEVER lose a bag.” I asked him to humor my hypothetical and he said that after they got done freaking out they would go to surveillance and see if the player accidentally took the chip bag with him (if he did, he would be DQ'ed). If he didn't then they would have to count all the chips in play and come up with an estimate of how many chips this player had. Talk about a nightmare situation... I can see why they've NEVER lost a bag.

Every room is packed to capacity and they've utilized tables at Buzio's and the Rio poker room. 2,924 players in total start today. Pollack said recently in an interview that, "We stretched beyond our capacity yesterday but we did it as much as we could," in regard to day 1D. If that was the case how were they able to fit nearly an additional 105 players today? I know they brought in additional tables and didn't let spectators in until those tables were broken... why couldn't they have done that for day 1D as well?

One of the options Pollack mentioned they might be using next year is to let players who pre-register select their starting day but if they come in to register in person they won't get a choice and it will be selected for them. Pollack also reiterated that there was no preferential treatment given. It's easy to turn a blind eye and to have a deaf ear I guess. The truth is out there though and the majority of people know that special favors exist and were given.

As I'm walking down the Rio hallway there's a guy talking loudly to himself. “What do I got to do?” he says. “You keep giving it to the other guy. What do I got to do?” Obviously he had just lost a big poker hand and was talking to his poker God. I've had that same conversation many times myself but it's usually a silent one.

I went to watch Phil Hellmuth at the feature table for a little bit. I was disappointed that he didn't have any melt downs. In fact, Hellmuth was rather silent and focused and had a very determined look on his face. The crowd was silent as well. Hellmuth did have a huge hand while I was there where he opened the action for 1,800 and his opponent, a young kid named Ben Sprengers re-raised to 5,600. Hellmuth took out his ear bud, studied the kid, and made it 10,000 to go. Sprengers wasted little time in four betting it to 26,000. Phil asks for a count of Ben's stack and learns that he has 63,750 behind.

After a minute of contemplation, Phil announces that he is all in. Sprengers insta-folds and Phil shows pocket queens and says, “I went with my read.” That hand brought Phil up to nearly 140K, which puts him in great shape with two levels left in the day.

At one table, two players are all in on a 6-5-2-J board with the jack being the jack of hearts. The all in player has pocket jacks for a set and the bigger stack shows 6-5 for bottom two pair. “I need a six or a five,” the bigger stack says, not realizing those two cards would do him no good. A table mate says, “What you really need is another jack of hearts.” The table laughs and the river isn't the jack of hearts and the all-in player doubles up.

Marlon Wayans is playing and the ESPN reporter who interviewed him on the break told Joe Sebok and I that her interview basically went like this:

“Marlon, how are you doing?” followed by Marlon talking, cracking jokes, and ad libbing for 20 minutes. Some people apparently are as funny in real life as they are on television. I'll have to look for that interview later.

A fairly uneventful first two levels. Hopefully the last two of the day will bring more action. There are approximately 2,200 players remaining that started play today bringing the total number of players to 2,882. I have a prop bet with another media member that we won't get under 2,300 total so let's hope for all the short stacks to double up! I'll be back later with the end of day report. Until then...

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