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Poker News | World Series of Poker | WSOP 2010 | WSOP Tournaments

WSOP Day 7: First PLHE and Stud Events Get Underway

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After the excitement of the $50K championship event that helped kick off the 2010 World Series of Poker, players and fans anxiously awaited the next big buy-in event. When $10K Seven-Card Stud Championship reared its head on the Thursday, June 3 schedule, the fans were on the rail and the high-stakes stud players were at the tables.

Thursday also brought the first pot-limit hold’em event of the season, and its $1,500 buy-in allowed for a large field to participate. While the event can be a slow one, players still enjoy the variation from the oh-so-popular no-limit tournaments that seem to be offered nearly every day.

Speaking of no-limit, the $1,500 NLHE tournament from the day before was playing down in an attempt to reach a final table on Thursday, though that didn’t seem likely as the evening hours wore on. But final tables were underway for the $5K shootout and the 2-7 triple draw lowball, on their way to finding two new WSOP bracelet winners who would report to the Pavilion ballroom the following day to get their engraved bling.

With another weekend fast-approaching, meaning a $1.5K NLHE and $1K NLHE were on the way to bringing thousands more players to the Rio, Thursday seemed like a light one in comparison, despite the heavyweights occupying the chairs at the poker tables.

For the details of how it all went down on Thursday, take a look at the specific event summaries below.

Event 6: Day 3, $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em Shootout

Three rounds of play made up this shootout tournament, Day 1 taking players through their first tables, winners returning for Day 2, and those winners taking seats at the final table on Day 3. The final table was set to play out on June 3 with its six players all guaranteed at least $71,998 but all shooting for the top $441,692 prize and the bracelet. A separate article will chronicle the final table action and results.

Event 7: Day 3, $2,500 Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Lowball

The tournament was one for poker variation specialists, those who enjoy the getaway from holdem and Omaha and seek something with different strategy and patience requirements. The deuce-to-seven triple draw lowball event was just that, and the 291 participants took the tables on Day 1, though only 257 returned for Day 2. By the start of Day 3, only 8 players remained but two had to be eliminated before the official final table could begin. All of the action, from eight players to one winner, will be recapped in a separate article.

Event 8: Day 2, $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em

It was the second no-limit hold’em tournament of the summer Series, and the solid crowd of 2,341 players that took their seats on Day 1 included a solid mix of big names, such as Annette Obrestad playing her first event of the year, and amateurs. They gathered to create a $3,160,350 prize pool to be distributed among the top 243 finishers with first place ultimately receiving $352,916 for the win.

Day 1 thinned the field quite a bit, as it always does, and the night ended with only 270 players in their seats. Josh Schlein led the field, and those 270 people returned to the Rio on June 3 in an attempt to reach the final table, though the requisite number of hours looked to make that a difficult task, as is common in the $1,500 NLHE events.

It took less than an hour on Day 2 to reach hand-for-hand action, and minutes later, the bubble burst as a number of players all busted on the same hand. The actual hand wasn’t reported, and the tournament staff had to take a few moments to sort out which players walked away with no money and which ones cashed for the minimum of $2,844.

Some of the notable players eliminated in the money as the evening progressed included Victor Ramdin, Pat Pezzin, Nick Binger, Jean-Robert Bellande, and Cliff Josephy. One of the oddest eliminations was that of Bruce Stern, a player who ended Day 1 with 75,000 chips but never showed up for Day 2. Hours into the day, his stack was blinded off, and Stern was eliminated.

Later in the day, David Daneshgar, Steve Sung, Matt Stout, and Josh Schlein exited the event. But it was one player still in the event that caught everyone’s attention. Phil Hellmuth was still in contention, even progressing up the leaderboard, quite serious about making an attempt at his 12th bracelet.

Altogether, there were 25 players left in the field when play stopped, and the chip leader was Saar Wilf with 1,207,000 chips. Second was Andrew Cohen, winner of the casino employees’ event that kicked off the 2009 WSOP, with 848K in chips, and the rest of the top five were Charles Lehr, Scott Vener, and Hellmuth.

Play was set to resume at 2:30pm on Friday, June 4, with the goal of playing to the final table and directly on to the winner’s circle.

Event 9: Day 1, $1,500 Pot-Limit Hold’em

The first pot-limit hold’em event of the 2010 WSOP brought out the folks who enjoy the holdem game but want a little bit of a variation from the no limit holdem variety. As with any $1,500 event, a mix of amateurs and pros joined together to play the event, which made for a rail combination of family members sweating relatives and poker fans looking for famous poker faces. It was all there, amidst the sea of tables in the Pavilion ballroom at the Rio.

Last year, the first PLHE tournament of the series didn’t kick in until Event 20 and brought 633 players to the tables. The prize pool was $864,045, and J.P. Kelly picked up the bracelet and nearly $195K for the win. This year’s event eclipsed those numbers by a slim margin when 650 players registered and created a $877,500 prize pool. From that number, the last 63 players were set to take home some prize money, with the winner guaranteed $197,470 to go with the bracelet.

The tournament got off to a quick start, with early eliminations from Antonio Esfandiari, Lacey Jones, Davidi Kitai, Eric Baldwin, Joe Cada, Gavin Smith, Dave Ulliot, Jeff Madsen, Chino Rheem, Tony Dunst, JC Tran, and Chris Ferguson. Late into the evening, others sent to the rail included Liv Boeree and Lee Watkinson. And J.P. Kelly was eliminated as well, unable to repeat his win in this event.

Play stopped for the night at the requisite time, but with 65 players left in the field, it just happened to be two spots away from the money. Instead of playing forward, though, and handling the money bubble and flurry of subsequent bustouts at the end of the day, the decision was made to deal with it the following day. Atop the leaderboard was James Dempsey with 205,900 chips, followed by Scott Montgomery and his 193,300-chip stack. The rest of the top five included James Lewis, J.J. Liu, and Joseph Gotlieb, in that order.

Those 65 players will return on Friday, June 4, at 2:30pm to take it to the next level.

Event 10: Day 1, $10,000 Seven-Card Stud Championship

The first championship of the 2010 WSOP was the $50K 8-game mix that kicked off the Series, but there were a number of players seeking a $10K buy-in. There had also been no stud games prior to this one, so when the 5:00pm start of the $10K seven-card stud championship showed up on the schedule, it was quite the attractive option.

The equivalent event from the 2009 WSOP brought 142 players into the stud fray, and Freddie Ellis was the ultimate champion, grabbing nearly $374K of the $1,334,800 prize pool. The 2010 championship did a few players better with an ending registration number of exactly 150, which meant the prize pool was set at $1,410,000. Only 16 players would be able to walk away with any of that money, but the last one standing was to win $394,807.

The field was stacked and included defending champion Ellis, and play started slowly as any should in which the starting stacks are 30K and so much money has been invested to compete. Just before dinner break, though, Matt Hawrilenko was the first to go, but following close behind were Erick Lindgren and Cyndy Violette. After dinner, some of those who followed included Tom Dwan, Annie Duke, John Juanda, Greg Raymer, David Benyamine, Ralph Perry, and Marco Traniello.

When play stopped in the wee hours of the morning, only 88 players remained. And a look at the ending chip stacks was déjà vu from Event 2, the $50K Poker Player’s Championship, as Michael Mizrachi was in first place with 191,900 chips and Vladimir Schmelev was in second with 178,100 - exactly the position they ended Event 2. The other members of the top five were Eric Buchman, Ray Dehkharghani, and Doyle Brunson.

The restart for the event is scheduled for Friday at 3:00pm, where they will attempt to play down to the final table.

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