PCA 2012: The multi-millionaires' table
If you happened to have a spare $25,000--who hasn't?--and decided to enter a High Roller poker event, you should never be entirely surprised to land up with a tough table. Sure, there will be a few soft spots in the field, folk with perhaps more money than poker prowess, but those gems will be scattered around the room.
An early look at the field today shows just how nasty some of those starting table draws can be. One table has 2009 WSOP champion Joe Cada sitting next to 2010 WSOP champion Jonathan Duhamel. Next to Duhamel is Eugene Katchalov, winner of last year's PCA $100,000 Super High Roller, and a few seats further along is the unmistakable bleached hair and sunglasses belonging to ElkY. All four are Team PokerStars Pros, and all four go to sleep on pillows and mattresses made of dollar bills.
I just did a quick tot up of those four folks' live winnings. Care to guess? Whatever figure you came up with, you may need to add some more on top:
Joe Cada: $8,900,000
Jonathan Duhamel: $10,175,000
Eugene Katchalov: $7,001,000
That's a total of $34,721,000, which is a shade higher than the total amount ever won by members of Team PokerStars Blog.
But the trickiness of this table does not end there. Sitting to ElkY's left is the German Philipp Gruissem, who tends to specialise in these high roller affairs and has $1.6 million winnings to his name. And to cap it all off, Team PokerStars Pro Ville Wahlbeck has just sat down in the last seat, seat 8 to Gruissem's left. While the Finn's live winnings amount to only (!) $1.4 million, he plays the high stakes cash games online and is perfectly at home in at event like this one.
Things have started off in a friendly enough fashion. In fact, Gruissem is attempting to set up a side match where each player takes a pick of who they think will win this thing. He's got Isaac Haxton down as a lock-in.
"Well, I'd better try and play my best, then," Haxton joked when hearing the news.
Despite the rough nature of this table, Cada is looking nicely relaxed. Not only can he be confident after finishing 11th in this very event for $51,000 last year, but more importantly he woke up this morning $175,550 richer than he woke up yesterday morning.
The 24-year-old American picked up his biggest live score since winning the WSOP back in 2009 when he won the $2,000 no limit side event last night, besting a tough field of 348 players.
Has he found form at a crucial time? Going on to win this one would certainly prove it.