The 2013 World Series is barely two weeks old and so far it's been a case of 'almost but not quite' for the guys and gals of Team PokerStars. As the starting stacks are laid out for Event #24, the stats read: six final table finishes, zero bracelets. But that's not the whole story. And while bracelets and chunky winner's cheques have proven one step too far, Team PokerStars has still been a major force in the early stages.
2009 Main Event winner Joe Cada is chief among those putting up the good fight, silencing his critics with two fourth place finishes for a combined $245,210 (more on that here). Meanwhile, fellow Team PokerStars Pro, and SCOOP 2013 Player of the Series, George Danzer's sixth place finish in Event #5: $2,500 Omaha/Seven Card Stud Hi-Low 8-or Better was good for $34,348.
Fireworks awaited in Event #19: $5,000 PLHE, where red spades made up a whopping 33.33333% of the final table and collected more than $100K in prize money between them. Despite the favourable figures, though, Dario Minieri (eighth for $26,468), Bertrand 'ElkY' Grospellier (seventh for $34,341) and Eugene Katchalov (fifth for $58,912) all missed out on adding to their World Series tallies.
Away from final table shenanigans, Barry Greenstein was spotted collecting $29,980 after finishing 11th in Event #17: $1,500 NLHE, and Team PokerStars Online stalwarts Mickey 'mement_mori' Petersen and Randy 'nanonoko' Lew narrowly missed out on final tables in Event #11: $2,500 NLHE Six-Handed and Event #16: $10,000 NLHE Heads-Up respectively.
But two weeks is no time at all the World Series, and all is not lost. With just under 40 events still left to plunder, Team PokerStars chances of nabbing some bracelet booty look more than likely. And the signs are looking promising. Yesterday, ElkY looked keen to follow up on his 2011 Seven-Card Stud success after bagging up a top 10 chip stack in Event #23: $2,500 Seven-Card Stud.
Little more than 100 players remain in Event #23 and there are plenty of Team PokerStars Pros lurking dangerously, with Andre Akkari, Alexander Kravchenko and 2013's tournament poster boy, Daniel Negreanu, among those edging towards the money bubble. You can almost smell another final table (almost).
Want to see how it all finishes? Check back with the PokerStars Blog in the coming days for the latest news from Vegas. In the meantime, click through for Mickey Petersen's thoughts on running hot (and cold) when the World Series rolls into town.
Keir Mackay is a copywriter for PokerStars. WSOP photos courtesy of PokerPhotoArchive.