2009 PCA: Early Musings

The first level of a poker tournament is sort of like the first day back to school. During a quick stroll through the tournament area, you're bound to discover a couple of familiar faces along with some folks you haven't seen in months or even years on the tournament trail. Handshakes and hugs are exchanged among the friendlier pros, while nods and winks seem to be the norm among the players trying to keep a low profile.

Alas, that's the ebbs and flows of tournament poker. Sometimes you will see the same person at every single event for a year and then they disappear for an undetermined amount of time only to resurface at the PCA.

In the early level of play, action is a little slow due to the 20,000 deep stacks that every players began Day 1A with. Here's some of the little tid bits that I encountered while wandering around the tournament room...


- Team PokerStars Pro Barry Greenstein was spotted catching up on his currents events as he read a newspaper.

- Jon "apestyles" Van Fleet took a hit early on. He turned a straight but the board paired on the river. His opponent overbet the pot and Van Fleet managed to get away from the hand. He slipped to around 16,000.

- Team PokerStars Pro Lee "Final Table" Nelson took an early lead after a 'boat over boat' situation.

- PokerStars Six Member (and November Nine finalist) Ylon Schwartz is seated new to fellow New Yorker Steve Zolotow.

- 2008 bracelet winner David Kitai from Belgium is seated at the same table as 8-time bracelet winner Erik Seidel.

- Sorel Mizzi is one of the many players in the room employing the various massage therapists.