GDAM Day 2: All the way to the final table
Good afternoon everyone and welcome back to PokerStars Live at the City of Dreams, Macau, for what will be one of the most intriguing days of the poker-playing year. This is day two of the GuangDong Ltd Asia Millions, which yesterday accumulated one of the biggest prize pools in poker history -- HK $119,375,000, or approximately US $15,400,000. Today will determine who wins some of it.
When registration closed yesterday, we learned that 71 players had ponied up the HK $1m -- approximately $130,000 -- to play, and there were 54 re-entries/re-loads/top ups during a frantic rebuy period. An awful lot of money has been invested into this one so far, and today it will all be about investing sufficient time to make the steady progress to the final table.
Remember, only the final table will be paid. The prize breakdown is as follows:
1 - $34,600,000 HKD ($4,464,516 USD)
2 - $24,500,000 ($3,161,290)
3 - $16,100,000 ($2,077,419)
4 - $12,525,000 ($1,616,129)
5 - $10,200,000 ($1,316,129)
6 - $8,300,000 ($1,070,968)
7 - $7,150,000 ($922,581)
8 - $6,000,000 ($774,194)
There are a couple of familiar faces right at the top of the charts at the moment: Team PokerStars Pro Jonathan Duhamel is hotly pursued by his Team Online counterpart Isaac Haxton. But there's also Sorel Mizzi, Di Dang, Joseph Cheong, JC Alvarado and Dan Smith in the top ten, which is about as formidable a chasing pack as you could possible assemble.
Many of the sharks came here knowing specifically that they could maybe outplay some of the wealthy locals having a stab at the big tournament time, but they will also today need to cannibalise one another to take things further. Ever the rubber-neckers, we will be on hand to see who prospers. Chances are, of course, that at least a handful of those so-called whales will find some teeth of their own today. It's not going to be pretty. But it is going to be fun.
We begin level eight at 3pm local time and will play to our last eight players. Levels are only one hour long, and I expect there will be a dinner break after we've played four levels. Under normal circumstances, you'd think this could be a long old night. But this being Macau, we could be done very very quickly too.
There's only one way to find out, and that's to stick around today.