PCA 2016: Leonardo Pires leads Main Event for a second day

Day 3 is usually handed over to the bubble, that pivotal moment when the tournament changes and we begin to cast our eyes towards the main stage and the final table. And that was the case today, with a lengthy bubble that divided the field into the haves and have-nots.

But arguably the main story is that of tonight's chip leader, a familiar name given he appeared in this position 24 hours ago. Leonardo Pires leads once more, ending another demanding day with 2,095,000 chips.


leonardo_pires_pca2016_me_d3_0230.jpgChip leader - again - Leonardo Pires

Just like yesterday, the Brazilian played lots of pots and, well, won them. Each pass by his table seemed to herald more chips to his stack, an expanding piece of real estate that nobody could tap into.

That puts him in pole position among the 73 remaining players tonight from a starting field of 928, some 195 of whom came back to play five levels today.


pca_chips_pic_pca2016_me_d3.jpg

He was not alone in having a good day.

Phillip McAllister seemed always to have chips and bags up 1,379,000 tonight. The same goes for Matthew Waxman (949,000), David Eldridge (859,000), Paul-Francois Tedeschi (824,000), Fabian Ortiz (804,000) and also Vasken Demlakian (339,000), whose last minute flight or fight all-in (we mean that literally, given he was supposed to fly home tomorrow), resulted in his quadrupling up. He's cancelling the flight.


phillip_mcallister_pca2016_me_d3_0141.jpgPhillip McAllister


demlakian_pca2016_me_d3.jpgVasken Demlakian

Here's how the leaders look tonight, along with some selected chip counts from the day:

Leonardo Pires 2,095,000
Phillip McAllister 1,379,000
Matthew Waxman 949,000
David Eldridge 859,000
Paul-Francois Tedeschi 824,000
Fabian Ortiz 804,000
Paul Gooley 776,000
Ivan Barbuto 743,000
Jason Mercier 704,000
Ami Barer 604,000
Anthony Gregg 590,000
Jason Koon 493,000
Fabian Rabah 426,000
Davidi Kitai 389,000
Fedor Holz 378,000
Vladimir Troyanovskiy 356,000
Jono Crute 348,000
Vasken Demlakian 339,000
Luke Guest 325,000
Taylor Paur 300,000
Shawn Buchanen 268,000
Jared Jaffe 240,000
Stephen Chidwick 193,000
Mike Watson 184,000
Felipe Ramos 135,000
Toby Lewis 134,000
John Racener 127,000

Click HERE for the full Day 3 chip counts.


jason_mercier_pca2016_me_d3.jpgJason Mercier - 704,000


felipe_ramos_pca2016_me_d3.jpgFelipe Ramos - 135,000 chips

Then there was that bubble we mentioned. The bubble typically bursts in the second level of the third day of play. But we played through that and the next one today, almost entirely hand for hand, looking for them. When they did fall it was in the fourth level of play, which may well be the first time that's happened.


olivier_busquet_out_pca2016_me_d3.jpgOlivier Busquet finished in 137th place - two off the money

After Olivier Busquet was eliminated two off the money, it was Knut Karnapp who was the last to depart empty handed, having hung on for so long. But while he fell short in the main event the trip so far has been no dud. Only last week Karnapp finished third in the LAPT Bahamas Main event, collecting more than $130,000.


knut_karnapp_pca2016_me_d3.jpgOut on the bubble: Knut Karnapp

Admittedly that's some way off the $833,260 that will be awarded to the Main Event winner on Thursday, although as far as those who cannot now win any of that Karnapp is in good company.

In all we lost 122 players today, including:

Andrey Zaichenko, Benjamin Pollak, Calvin Anderson, Dov Markowich, Eddy Sabat, Elie Saad, Jeremy Ausmus, Joao Ribeiro, Marius Pospiech, Martins Adeniya, Michael Newman, Olivier Busquet, Samuel Phillips, Stanley Blaby, Tam Nguyen, Tamer Kamel, and Timothey Miles - all before the bubble.

Once the bubble burst the list continued with the following eliminations:

Jonathan Little (128th), Chris Oliver (25th), Siarhei Melianiuk (120th), Sam Greenwood (116th), Thiago Nishijima (114th), Jeff Rossiter (111th), Allan Kessler (107th), Kevin MacPhee (99th), William Foxen (97th), Sam Chartier (95th), JC Alvarado (91st), Single Day High Roller winner Steve O'Dwyer (89th), Sean Winter (86th) and Joao Veira (85th).


sam_chartier_pca2016_me_d3.jpgSam Chartier

See the full list of pay-outs here.

The remaining players return at noon tomorrow to play five more levels and inch close to a spot at the final table on Thursday. Also starting tomorrow is the $25,000 High Roller single re-entry which will race the Main Event to the festival finish line. It will likely boast the usual all-star line-up, with coverage starting on the PokerStars Blog tomorrow, also at noon.


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Until then you can catch up on all the action from today: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3

Until tomorrow.


Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.