PCA 2012: The Walking Dead (Money)
Big name pros, EPT winners, freeroll winners, online grinders and have-a-go heroes: they're all here with a 30,000 chip stack and a shot at the PCA title. Some players swaggered in enjoying the glances of recognition, others sauntered through in flip flops more concerned with the coffee in their hand than the $10,000 they were about to start spinning. Many more players entered the PCA tournament room for their first time ever, eyes adjusting from the bright Caribbean sun outside, hoping that they could continue the run-good that qualified them for this $10,000 tournament.
While everyone starts on a level playing field the brutal reality is that most - around 85% - will get eliminated before the bubble bursts. They are the walking dead. And they don't even know it yet. You've got to feel some sympathy. Much like the not-seen-before Star Trek security officer in a red shirt, who you know is due to get zapped/eaten/crushed by a boulder within seconds of beaming down to an alien planet with Captain Kirk, these players have a destiny to be felted, sucked out on, coolered or simply out-played - and the poor souls won't see it coming.
But like every great zombie movie ever made there are the survivors; bloodied and bruised heroes blasting their way through to the end credits, heroines that prove they've got as much punching power as the chisel-jawed lead, as well as plenty of tertiary characters cowering in the shadows delaying the inevitable brain-eating for as long as possible. Poker tournaments share the same appeal. Who will make it through? Who will get picked off?
Chris Oliver was the burly hero last night. He smashed through the field like a languid Chuck Norris, four-, five- and six-bet shoving his way to take 42% of the chips through to the main event final table but it was Galen Hall who triumphed after a spirited performance and solid heads up play. The same Hall who is currently chip leader in the Super High Roller - a fitting sequel. Stay with us at the PokerStars Blog as the survival story unfolds.