WSOP Event #17: Evening Updates

(updates below the cut)

After a full afternoon of play, the massive field in Event #17 is starting to look somewhat manageable. For a time today, it looked like the other events might not have tables for the players. When play started in Event #17 at noon, every table in the Amazon Ballroom was full--more than full, actually. Every table had eleven instead of ten chairs. What's more, hundreds of alterates roamed the hallways waiting for their chance to sit in one of the biggest preliminary events in WSOP history.

PokerStars had more than 90 people start the day. With only 1,500 chips and a wild field, it was going to take a combination of good luck, good play, and good cards to survive for long. To wit: 2005 WSOP champion Joe Hachem went out on the very first hand. Greg Raymer survied for a few hours, but ultimately failed to make the dinner break. Barry Greenstein needed some chips early so he could build a stack and make it over to Day of the Pot-Limit Omaha event. Instead, he busted out in the first hour. Isabelle Mercier built a big stack early, but eventually lost it all.

Victor Ramdin, Wil Wheaton, Katja Thater, and a host of other PokerStars players are still alive at this hour. However, the blinds are getting silly very fast and it's going to take even more luck and cards to get deep tonight.

We'll be back with more as the field thins out.

*******Updates******

12:36am--Play is just about to conclude for the night. A few more hands and then the remaining players will go to bed and get ready for Day 2 of this event on Tuesday.

12:23am--Humberto Brenes is a fun guy to watch. Holding A8 on a A8x board (with two flush draws out there), Brenes put his opponent all-in and then spent nearly five minutes goading the guy into calling. The pot was already huge and got even bigger. The guy held AJ suited in spades for top pair and the flush draw. Finally, after Humberto drew a crowd with his antics, the guy called. A red king on the river and Humbeto raked another huge pot that may move him in the direction of chip leader.

12:15am--Victor Ramdin started to get a little short, but just won a race to double up.

12:10am--Humberto Brenes is cruising, having just won a big pot that likely moved him into the top ten in chips.

12:08am--Down under 200 players now with about 40 minutes left to play tonight.

11:41pm--One more hour to play before we break for the night.

11:33pm--How about a few pictures of some of our PokerStars players in the money?


Robert "Hoogmeister" Hutchins


Michael "MK12" Kilgore


William "BrettFavre" Jensen




Hank "Hardway Hank" Sitton, deep in the event, with chips (also one of my local tournament rounders, and hence, worthy of a moment of nepotism)


10:53pm--After a while, covering tournament poker can be a grind. I'll be the first to admit that. Brutal beats, astounding wins, bubble finishes, they all evoke the same emotion. However, as the players made the money two minutes ago and the room exploded in cheers and high-fives, a sense of vicarious joy touched off a few positive endorphins. The power of more than 200 people being happy at once is a pretty cool thing.

10:35pm--The players are back from the color-up break.

10:12pm--The players are now on an extended break.

10:10pm--Hoogmeister. Now, that is a screen name. That is also one of the PokerStars players who continues to run well here and sits in the top 30 in chips.

9:40pm--Victor Ramdin is proving he knows how to go deep. Although I feel like a broken record, Ramdin is once again deep into a WSOP field. he and Humberto Brenes are both in the top 30 in chips with aroun 300 players remaining in the field.

9:06pm--Nam Le has just busted. He ran AK into AA. A king on the flop gave him a little hope, but another king didn't materialize. There are about 400 players left in the event.

8:42pm--Jim McManus, prematurely ejected from the $10,000 PLO event, is still in the tournament area. He's sweating the ladies event. While that is never a bad way to spend one's time, McManus actually has a legitimate reason to be there. His teachiing assistant for his poker class (for those who don't know, McManus is a professor, as well as a write and poker player), is at the final table. Shawnee Barton is currently fourth in chips.

8:17pm--There's a difference between what people say and what they mean. I walked up on Wil Wheaton just as everybody folded around to the small blind. The guy looked at Wil's stack and made what looked like a steal. Wil read it as such as well and put in his short stack with K9. It was the right move. The guy had 56o. The flop didn't help the opponent, but a six turned. Wil let loose a vaguely cartoonish, Mr. Bill-like "Oh, no." The river didn't help him. "Good luck, everybody," he said. That was what he said before he left the table. What he said after he left the table...well, I'll leave that for him to tell you (which he will soon). Suffice it to say, it didn't sound much like "Good luck, everybody."

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker