PCA 2015: Sam Greenwood disrupts the Mike McDonald fitness video to lead Super High Rollers at end of Day 1
The PokerStars Caribbean Adventure is now 11 years and one day old.
The 2015 renewal of the annual jamboree in the Bahamas kicked off at noon today in the Imperial Ballroom of the Atlantis Resort -- and we started with a big one. Event #1 this year is the $100,000 Super High Roller tournament, featuring the very biggest names in the game paying that enormous fee.
With the buy-in so high, the quality is exceptional, and the structure allows the cream to rise to the top. Yet the day quickly became less about poker and more about friends goofing around for money -- which, actually, is sometimes just the way it is when the game is played at this level.
It was a pretty slow start as they filtered gradually into the tournament room, but the pace soon picked up thanks to some of the game's most reliable funsters. Bill Perkins was the first to re-enter, having dusted off his 250,000 starting stack in no time, but not before he had also set up Mike McDonald in a squat on the webcast stage.
That first bet -- McDonald had to complete 300 air squats in the space of one hour -- proved to be a breeze for McDonald. But as the tournament clock ticked into the penultimate level of the day, McDonald was trying to do 350 push ups inside 60 minutes, with a $20,000 carrot dangled in front of his nose.
He didn't make this one, but has proven once again that fitness is crucial in poker: despite, or perhaps because of, the distractions, he has amassed a stack of 749,000 and is only on his first bullet. (Perkins is on his third.) McDonald is among the leaders after Day 1; the man who was the runner up in the Main Event last year likes the PCA.
The top five stacks at this stage are as follows, and the best way to learn how they got them is to head to the main Super High Roller page and scroll through the hand-by-hand action in the panel at the top.
If you click on the chip-count tab in that same panel, you'll be able to see how they are all making out at this stage.
Sam Greenwood -- 1,073,000
Mike McDonald -- 749,000
Andrew Robl -- 734,000
Christoph Vogelsang -- 697,000
Carlos Chadha -- 683,000
Registration is open until just before the start of play tomorrow, but this is already a record breaker for the venue. Before today, the biggest Super High Roller event at the PCA had 59 entries, and we have already bettered that. The count at the end of today showed 48 unique players and 12 re-entries, bringing us to a total of 61, with more potentially to come. There were 39 players left at the end, but they can all come back if they want to before play begins again.
Plenty of players will also look to make a big move tomorrow, the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Ole Schemion, Jason Mercier and Fedor Holz among them. This is a scintillating field.
The full prize pool will be known tomorrow, as soon as all the calculating is done. They will also try to play down to a final table of eight, a task that could take some time.
We had a brief meditation on the nature of poker television and set up shop for tomorrow's Latin American Poker Tour event.
Our video coverage took poker players to the confessions booth and sent Sarah Herring to the eateries (and drinkeries) of Paradise Island.
Play begins at noon tomorrow in both the Super High Roller and the LAPT event. We'll have coverage of both, so be sure to join us then.