2008 World Series: First of four Day 1s comes to a close
We thought we might go our entire life without seeing Wayne Newton.
We were almost certain we wouldn't ever hear him accompanied by a marching band.
We would've placed good money down on Newton never uttering these four famous words: "Shuffle up and deal!"
We would've lost.
That's how Day 1A of the 2008 World Series kicked off Thursday. Nearly 1,300 players came in today to fight in this, the first of four Day 1s of the Main Event. While the numbers of the first day don't suggest a huge World Series main event, the word on the street is this weekend is nearly sold out. So, any judgment on what the final prize pool will be this year would be premature. Regardless of any statistic, one thing remained sure today. Every one of these players would start with 20,000 chips. Around half of those people wouldn't have any by day's end.
Waye Newton nor anyone else in the room heard "danke schoen" from a number of Team PokerStars Pro players who didn't make it through the day. Tuan Lam, Ray Rahme, Marcin Horecki, Chad Brown, Katja Thater all made an earlier-than-predicted exit from the Amazon Room and will have to wait until next year to fight for the bracelet.
The worst of it, though, fell on Team PokerStars Pro Luca Pagano. His day had been one of a slow and steady rise. It ended in the last level of the night when he lost set-over-set for the whole of his stack.
It's better news, though, for Team PokerStars Pros Barry Greenstein and Noah Boeken They made it to Day 2, starting five days away from now. Boeken was the biggest mover on the day, getting his stack up to 85,000 at one point before losing a tough hand to two pair and dropping back down a bit. On the last level of the night, he once again lost half his stack and then promptly doubled up. He finished the day around 41,000.
As mentioned here before, PokerStars qualified 2008 players for this 2008 Main Event. Many of those players were here for Day 1A (see many of their faces in THIS POST). Among them was a building contractor from Texas, David Tagliabue. David does contract work in Afghanistan and is taking some time off to play in his first World Series. We asked him how long he had until he had to return.
"As much time as I need," he said.
How much time he needed is a matter of question, though. At night's end, we did a three-pass search through the Amazon room and could not find him. David, if you're still out there, give us a shout.
Better off late night was PokerStars Supernova Wes Ismay. He bought into this event with his Frequent Player Points and was looking strong in the last level with 65,000. I can personally attest to Wes' talent. On my one day off here, I played in an event and sat with Wes for several hours. There was no question about his being the best player at the table. When we recognized our PokerStars connection, he said, "Hopefully you'll be writing about me."
Well, Wes, we are writing about you and hope you finished the day as well.
Day 1B begins Friday and we'll see another flood of PokerStars qualifiers and Team PokerStars Pros. Scheduled to appear at the tables are Pros Victoria Coren, Tom McEvoy, Daniel Negreanu, Greg Raymer, and Vanessa Rousso. We'll also welcome PokerStars-sponsored players Alexander Kravchenko and Kathy Liebert.
Finally, we can't end Day 1A without giving all the folks here in Vegas a reminder about the PokerStars Burlesque Party at Rain on Monday night. Free food, open bar, and a lot of celebrity guests will welcome guests for what is sure to be the hottest party of this year's World Series. Click here to download your invitation.
Selected chip counts for Day 1A can be found on our 2008 World Series Chip Counts page. When Harrah's provides us with a full list of chip counts, we will post it on the same page.
This is not the only place to get your fix for World Series news. Our video blogging team is working tirelessly and turning out some great stuff at the freshly-launched PokerStars.tv. Be sure to head over there and watch a few videos. You will also get the password for the PokerStars.tv freeroll on PokerStars.
Here's a good example from the day....Chris Moneymaker and his public.
Watch WSOP 08: Chris Moneymaker Meets The Qualifiers on PokerStars.tv
For a complete look back at all of our coverage from the day, check out any of the links below.
This show is go
Looking to go two better...
The young and the restless
From small screen to major stage
Similarities and differences
Noah's arc and Alexander's aces
Off piste poker from Poland
Turning qualification success into Main Event best
Building roads, building stacks
Making this year count
Qualifiers weathering the storm