WSOP Main Event Day 7: Nothing guaranteed
The table featuring Theo Jorgensen now has two cameras permanently stationed at his table. Jorgensen is in the top five and warrants the attention, especially as he's been playing full on tournament poker, winning chips and looking unbeatable.
But while chip leaders usually go deep in other events, to be a chip leader in the World Series Main Event is no guarantee of longevity. Just ask David Assouline. The Canadian PokerStars qualifier held the lead earlier in the event and began today with 1.7 million. Now he's out thanks to Pascal LeFrancois.
With a board showing A♦Q♣6♥A♣ at the turn Assouline checked before LeFrancois bet 560,000. Assouline called for a J♦ on the river. Again Assouline checked. LeFrancois announced he was all-in sending the tension back across the table to the Canadian.
David Assouline in agony against Pascal LeFrancois
The table was silent and only spectators dared whisper as Assouline thought about the call. When he did he couldn't have been happy at the speed with which LeFrancois showed his cards, let alone what LeFrancois showed - A♠J♠.
Still silent, Assouline turned over K♦K♣ and walked around the table to shake Lafrancois' hand. As he returned a friend on the rail immediately embraced him. "Anybody would have called that hand," said the buddy, talking him down off the ledge. "You played great. You played tremendous."
Assouline perked up and allowed himself a smile. The chip leader from days ago had met the end of his Main Event and he'd done good, collecting $206,395 for 44th place. Then another friend rushed in, too late to see the hand.
"What's going on?" he asked.
"I'm out," replied Assouline. "I'm out, I'm out, I'm out."
A SELECTION OF HANDS OF THE HOUR (INCLUDING DOUBLE UP OF THE HOUR)
It's getting impossibly fraught as dinner approaches on day seven - and that means that every skirmish feels as though it's for the bracelet, whether or not it has any actual bearing.
On the feature table, John Racener and Michael Mizrachi just went bet, call, bet, call, all the way to a river and chopped a huge pot when they both showed ace king.
Then on the secondary feature table, they didn't even get that far, but it lasted even longer. Johnny Lodden opened to 200,000 under-the-gun and Mads Wissing, one seat to Lodden's left, raised to 675,000. Jonathan Duhamel, in the big blind, make it a straight three million, and although Lodden was persuaded out of it quickly, Wissing wasn't.
He thought, thought, thought and thought some more, muttering: "You could be bluffing me here." He thought a bit more and someone called the clock, prompting the dealer to shout: "Floor on 371." The problem was that no floorperson was in sight. They were having a confab in the main tournament area, leaving the dealer to bellow it again.
Eventually one of the television crew trotted away to find a floorman, who returned to put Wissing on the clock. With about 10 second left, Wissing folded and Duhamel showed a bare K♣.
Back over in the main arena, Eduardo Parras was all in with pocket queens against James Fennell's A♠K♥. This was a full on rope-bender as railbirds poured forward through the media moat and into the tournament floor.
The presence of the television cameras always means a delay, but their absence means a longer pause as they wheel into position. Eventually they arrived into the melee and the dealer peeled a flop of J♥[10c]7♣, which had Parras offering slight celebration.
He got a little more excited on the 3♠ which popped out after another couple of minutes. And then there was full on high-fiving bedlam when the 5♥ rivered.
Parras had about 3m before the hand so has now cruised close to seven million and is delighted - much like his Brazilian supporters including Gualter Salles, who immediately tweeted: "QQ-ak segurou!!!!!"
QUALIFIER SURVIVOR OF THE HOUR
Nicolas Babel, French qualifier, who uses big slick to double through pocket tens.
POKERSTARS PLAYER ELIMINATIONS OF THE DAY OF THE HOUR
49th. Jacobo Fernandez (USA) $168,556
51st. James Manning (USA) $168,556
54th. Peter Jetten (Canada) $168,556
56th. Jared Ingles (USA) $132.285
60th. Bill Melvin (USA) $132.285
71st. Richard Morgan (USA) $114,205
72nd. Habib Khanis (USA) $114,205
75th. Jeff Banghart (USA) $94,942
76th. Mark Meloche (USA) $94,942
77th. Adam Etter (USA) $94,942
78th. Jean-Robert Bellande (USA) $94,942.
TWEET OF THE HOUR
Alex Gomes, rooting on Eduardo Parra from afar (and no we have no idea what this says: "7 MILHOESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!! VAMOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO MONSTRO PARRA!!!"
ATOMIC FIREBALL FACT OF THE HOUR
Number of bags of Atomic Fireballs, Official Candy of the PokerStars Blog, consumed during WSOP Main Event: 18 bags (at 24 pieces per bag)
JOE GIRON PHOTO OF THE HOUR
The main stage in the Amazon Room
THE 'WHO NEEDS VIDEO GAMES?' MOMENT OF THE HOUR
Three kids sitting cross legged around a floor light in the Rio corridor pretending it's a camp fire.
POLITE REQUEST OF THE HOUR
Number of people who have been told by security to stop standing on the chairs: 4
DISTURBING FACT OF THE HOUR
There are four of us and we only have two Atomic Fireballs left.
VIDEO OF THE HOUR
PokerStars qualifier Nicolas Babel: