NAPT Mohegan Sun: Day 1, levels 1 & 2 updates (75-150)
2:03pm: break time
Players are now on a 15 minute break.
1:50 pm: Well, we don't need Babelfish for that one
"Horrorstart, kan ingenting 17.000. Lockdown nu," twittered Lars Bonding (aka @1623poker), who is seated at a tough table alongside Shaun Deeb, Gavin Smith and David Williams.
1:45pm: The "Big Game" moving to Mohegan?
Well, if they all bust out, one helluva live cash game could get going. Team PokerStars Pro's Barry Greenstein is here, of course, but his "Big Game" opponents Phil Ivey and Chau Giang have taken seats inside the tournament room within the last few minutes. A few of the qualifiers over at Ivey's table are wearing expressions mixed of fear and nausea while Giang has hardly been in his seat, prefering to chat to his neighbors in these early levels.
1:41pm: Still climbing
Registration is still open, but we're currently hanging out at 715 players in the field.
Poker players can't help talking about poker - be it live, in chat boxes and, increasingly, on Twitter. Plenty of them are tweeting away from the tournament floor of the Mohegan Sun, and the best place to find all their outpourings is on our PokerStars aggregated NAPT Twitter page, or whatever you call it.
It was there that we found out this news from Adam Junglen - or @adamjunglen: "Got it all in on the turn with KJo vs KdJd on Td9s6sQd and lost. Busto first orbit with the nuts on the turn, drawing dead. Whateverrrr!"
Junglen is gone.
1.20pm: Ups and down with Chad Brown
Chad Brown was almost just sent to the rail for a round penalty - but managed to reason his way back to the table after discussions with tournament officials.
Brown and Richard Lyndaker were the last two players remaining with the following cards out: 5♥4♣Q♠2♦3♦. Lyndaker checked and Brown bet 3,000. Lyndaker picked a few chips from his stack and tossed them over the line, and Brown tabled his A♥K♥ for the bottom straight.
However Brown had not noticed that Lyndaker had, in actual fact, raised, putting out more than 6,000 in chips. The dealer had said "Raise" but Brown didn't hear and now he had exposed his hand.
Two floor people were called to make a ruling on the situation, both agreeing that Brown had the option to call or fold to Lyndaker's raise and said that he must then serve a one-round penalty for exposing his hand. In his defence, Brown said that it had been completely accidental, and was supported in this assertion by everyone else around the table.
That seemed to be enough for the floor staff to change their view, downgrading Brown's penalty to just a warning - an innocent mistake and not enough to send him into purgatory for an orbit.
Amid all this discussion, Brown made the called and Lyndaker showed 5♣6♣ for the six-high straight. Brown lost the pot but won the "argument". Lyndaker silently stacked the chips.
1:15pm: Greenstein's time zone
We've recently caught sight of Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greestein who reported the good news/bad news via his Twitter account. "The good news: my watch says 10am and the tournament starts at noon. Looks like two more hours to sleep. The bad news: my watch is set for West Coast time, but the tournament is in Connecticut on the East Coast."
We can't comment on whether the following is good news or bad news for Greenstein: fellow Team PokerStars Pro Victor Ramdin has been seated to Greenstein's immediate left.
1:09pm: Team Canada's newest faces
While the official announcement is still to come, we're pleased to reveal the newest members of Team PokerStars Pro Canada who are in the field today: Pat Pezzin, Marcello Del Grosso, Greg DeBora, and Anh Van Nguyen.
1:01pm: Level up
Players are now in Level 2 at 75/150 blinds.
1:00pm: Poker Room home to tables of death
Although our primary tournament space inside the Mohegan Sun convention center is cavernous to say the least, it's not quite large enough to hold our entire field. Roughly 300 paces away in the Poker Room, about half the tables inside are filled with tournament players while the cash games rage on the other side of the room.
Some of the fiercest online players in the world found their first table draw inside the poker room. We spotted Jordan Morgan, Amanda Baker, Eric Froehlich, Brock "tsoprano" Parker, Bill Chen, and the recently "retired" Shaun Deeb, who is going a bit incognito today in a Panama hat and sunglasses. J.C. Tran and Brandon Cantu drew the same tables, as did Allen "Chainsaw" Kessler and Matt Glantz. Nick Binger is chatting nonstop with Amnon Filippi, who obviously knows the way into the hearts of the media-- he brought a tray of mini-cupcakes from his own cupcake shop (who knew?)
The winner of today's Table of Death, however, is the one currently occupied by Dani "Ansky" Stern, Amit "amak316" Makhija and Vanessa Selbst. We pity the other seven players caught between these poker powerhouses.
12.45pm: Sandwich filling has the last say
Richard Austin has an unenviable table position this afternoon: sandwiched between James Akenhead (November Niner) and Clayton Mozdzen (EPT Warsaw final table-ist). And just recently all three of them were involved in a pot of more than 5,000 - which is sizeable in these early stages. The board was out all the way to the river: Q♥[10c]9♥J♥7♠ and Akenhead bet 2,000. Austin, on the button, called and Mozdzen, in the small blind, seemed interested. He ended up folding and Austin tabled 7♥6♥ for the turned flush. Akenhead mucked, but seemed more interested in what Mozdzen had. "Hearts?" he asked. Mozdzen shook his head and on they went - Austin silently stacking the chips.
12:30pm: Upping the celebrity factor
We're used to seeing him around the World Series of Poker but actor and talk show host Montel Williams is now taking a shot at the NAPT. He didn't get the easiest table draw, however, with Matt "All in at 420" Stout two to his left.
12.25pm: And more
Add to that list: Ricky Fohrenbach, Shane Schleger, Montel Williams, Bill Chen, Jonathan Little, Sam Stein, Eric Froehlich, John Cernutto, Hoyt Corkins.
12.20pm: Also here
Other players spotted already: Paul Testud, Adam Junglen, Kathy Liebert, David Levi, Jason Mercier, Joe Cada, Marcello Delgrosso, Victor Ramdin, Bernard Lee. We also understand Tom Dwan and Phil Ivey are on their way.
12.15pm: Of all the tables in all the world...
...you had to be on mine. As the players are arriving, some tasty table draws are already appearing. Greg Raymer is two seats away from Gavin Griffin; Eric Liu is opposite John D'Agostino.
Here, the two Team PokerStars Pros discuss their unfortunate table placement:
For a short period, Daniel Negreanu was alongside Dennis Phillips. That was only until another player arrived to the table, looked at his table ticket, looked to the table, looked back at the ticket, and then looked at the table again.
He said something along the lines of: "Excuse me sir, you seem to be in my seat" and he was saying it to Mr Negreanu. Sure enough, Negreanu had played the first three hands on the wrong table, in the wrong seat and with someone else's chips. Thankfully he had not actually found a hand worth playing and had folded, otherwise that would have been an early ruling for the tournament director.
As it was, Negreanu scooted off to his proper table and action resumed.
Noon: Any minute now
Well, well, well. They run a tight ship up here in Connecticut. Barely moments after the scheduled start time, we're pretty much ready to begin day one of the NAPT Mohegan Sun event.
What was, moments ago, a huge and empty convention center is now a buzzing and thriving poker room. There are now 647 confirmed entrants, and registration is still open for another two hours. We're going to break 700 by the looks of things.
In this small lull, read our official introduction. Or don't. It's up to you.
Then come right back for more. Cards are itching to be tossed into the air.
PokerStars Blog reporting team at the Mohegan Sun: Change100, Howard Swains and Brad Willis.