2011 PCA main event: Geyer rides bullet train to money, chip lead

PCA-2010-thumbnail.jpgNow would be the time for a good analogy, maybe a good metaphor, or at the very least a quirky simile that would explain how fast things have gone here today. But, no, no. No time for that. Someone has laced the water cooler here with something, and we haven't quite figured out what it is, but it's making our hearts race a little. Our upper lips are sweating. We've started to itch a little bit--hold on...someone else is busting out...oh, no, that's just a bird. No worries. Back to it. So, there's been a bit of a tournament going on today and it's been the equivalent of something the government might give fighter pilots. Everything is clear, maybe a little too clear, and (pause for heart palpitation)...well, suffice to say Day 2 went fast. Too fast. Everything is moving too fast!

The upshot of all of it is this: Day 2 of the PCA main event lost more than 400 players in the first five levels of play. The money bubble took exactly one hand. That's when PokerStars qualifier Marco Johnson busted out in a blind versus blind battle versus William Reynolds. Johnson's king-nine was no match for Reynolds' ace-nine and that was all she wrote.

Everything moved so fast, there was no dust to settle. When the day was done, a mere 173 players remained. The windswept tournament floor was clean enough to reflect the image of the end-of-day chip leader Adam Geyer who somehow managed to amass a stack worth 909,000.


Adam Geyer

Competing with Geyer at the top of the pack are the follow speed-freaks, Ilan Rouah (795,000) and Chris Oliver (792,500).


Ilan Rouah

Chris Oliver

Let's pause for a moment, because trying to convey all of the news of the day at once might result in some sort of arrhythmia that local doctors aren't ready for. Here's what's important: the cull on Day 2 was unlike many you'll see in a $10,000 poker tournament. The lines out the door looked more like a coastal hurricane evacuation than the second day of a major event. If you didn't know better, you might have thought no one wanted to make the money. It was as if no one told them, "Hey, man, we're gonna make the money before the end of the day, so you might want to stick around."

Some people held their seats. Worth a quick mention (and what other kind could there be at this point) are the Team PokerStars Pros who have made the money and are looking for more laurels for their neck. Among them is Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier who entered the day with a mere 8,600 in his stack and finished Day 2 with 123,000.


ElkY, king of the comeback

While ElkY's comeback is remarkable, Chris Moneymaker is making a run here that bears significant mention. He ended the day on 650,500, surely good for one of the top ten counts.


Moneymaker in the money

Other Team Pro survivors include:

  • Pieter de Korver (283,500)
  • Greg De Bora (242,500)
  • JP Kelly (254,000)
  • Victor Ramdin (61,000)
  • Yes, we're still sweating. We figure you are, too. So, let's get through this wrap-up together, shall we? This is the ugly part.

    Among those who couldn't keep their seats are some of the better-known names in the game. Viktor "Isildur1" Blom's game of rock'em sock'em robots ended with his head sprung up and his chips in Galen Hall's stack when jacks held up against ace-queen. No money for Isildur1 today (what was he going to do with $2.3 million, anyway?).


    Following (or in many case preceding) their fellow Team Pros out the door were the likes of Liv Boeree, Jude Ainsworth, Joe Cada, Greg Raymer, Dario Minieri, Marcin Horecki, Dag Palovic, John Duthie, Ruben Visser, Van Nguyen, Joao Nunes, Luca Pagno, and Christian De Leon. Marcel Luske and Sandra Naujoks managed to squeak into the cash, but were also eliminated in the last level of the night. If we had time to be sad, we would, but we can't put time in a bottle either, so let's get on with it.


    Sandra Naujoks

    So, what now? Seriously? After a day so packed with mainline adrenaline and carnage, how is it possible that tomorrow could be any more interesting? Well, there is the matter of money and a $2.3 million first prize. There are still four more days of this before we crown a champion, and every time the doors to the tourney room open to let somebody out, everybody else remaining is a step closer to the brass ring.

    We'll get to that eventually. For now, we need a shower...and maybe a Valium.

    If you're as amped as the rest of us, you might need some light reading. To catch up with the day, speed read through this:

    Levels 11 & 12 updates
    Levels 13 & 14 updates
    Levels 15 & 16 updates

    For a quick look at some selected stacks from the field, have a look at our 2011 PCA chip count page. We'll update that with a full list of counts when they become available. In the meantime, you'll see all the money at stake (and eventually who is winning it) over on the 2011 PCA prize winners page.

    If that's not enough for your speed-addled brain, we have moving pictures (and sound!) over on PokerStars.tv. If you're so hopped up you're thinking about taking apart your kitchen appliances to see if you can put them back together, spend your time more wisely by learning to read German, Dutch, Italian and in Portuguese. We have coverage in those languages, too.

    Now, we're going to try to calm down. Sleep, she is an elusive temptress, but we'll catch her. Yes, we will.

    (And then we'll be back at noon ET Tuesday for the start of Day 3.)

    Photography © Joe Giron/Joe Giron Photography