WSOP Main Event: Step into the freezer

wsop2010_thn.jpgThis was a bloody, cold hour. We'll give it to you in pieces, because that's how it's left some of our PokerStars players.

We'll begin with the tale of a man who at one point yesterday was literally down to one chip and a chair. He managed to finish Day 5 with a million in his stack.

SICK, COLD, HOT, GONE: GUALTER SALLES

When you remove hundreds of living, breathing bodies from the Amazon Room, it gets chilly. The air conditioning doesn't help. Just ask Brazil Team PokerStars Pro Gualter Salles.

"I sat in that corner of the room for two days under the air conditioning," he said. "I got sick."

Today, he's had a hard time regulating his body temperature. He was wearing a jacket over a hoodie. He had his head covered and was eating a banana with some cranberry juice before the last break. When moved to a different table, he pulled off the hoodie and stuffed it in his backpack. He just didn't feel right. He was hoarse. He only had 460,000 after making a tough--but right--laydown before the break.

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Gualter Salles, sick and in the middle of having to make a tough laydown

He was trying to stay optimistic, despite it all.

"One double up and I'm right back to where I started the day," he said.

He played it as tight as possible for the first half hour of the next level, but it wasn't to be. Salles ran ace-jack into Adam Levy's ace-queen, and that was all for the Brazilian pro. He cashed for $57,102.

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*NOW* SHE IS THE LAST WOMAN STANDING

Yesterday we took issue with the phrase "last woman standing" to describe Breeze Zuckerman, as she had yet to stand. She was officially the last woman still sitting. Now, she can be accurately described as the last woman standing.The most brutal part of her eventual exit was having her kings cracked by Adam Levy's jacks.

"I just didn't feel like it was my time to go," Levy said afterward. "I guess I'll just keep playing jacks."

After the break, Zuckerman was still alive, but only had 125,000 sitting in front of her. She turned to her friend on the rail and said, "Get my drivers license, because I'm going to need it when I bust."

It only took ten minutes before she open-shoved with K♦T♥. Eric Baldwin pondered before re-raising from the button. The blinds got out of the way and Baldwin said, "Good luck," as he tuned over two red aces.

Zuckerman flopped her king. When a jack and queen came on the turn and river, she sat back down thinking she'd outdrawn Baldwin. Embarrassed to find she had not, she stood up with a smile.

"I thought I had a straight and I just sat down," she said. "What an exit! Good job, Breezey!"

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Breeze Zuckerman, sitting before she standing the last time

ANDIAMO? PLEASE STAND OVER THERE FOR A WHILE

It's been a while since we've seen the ol' Excessive Celebration rule put into action. It happened just a few minutes ago when German Supernova Elite Michael Skender ran headlong into a cooler for 1,636,000. His queens were up against Italian Filippo Candio's aces. There was never any point it looked like Skender was going to catch up, but Candio bounced nervously beside the table. When the river fell and nothing bad had happened, Candio bounded around the room screaming "Andiamo! Andiamo! Andiamo!" with enough volume to turn every head in the Amazon Room.

Before Candio was done bouncing, he'd run fist-pumping through the red section's feature table area and nearly disrupted another major hand playing out at Johnny Lodden's table (more on that in a second).

When Candio finally returned to his seat, a tournament official was waiting on him with a one-round penalty.

Andiamo that, sir.

CUTTHROAT POKER WITH JOHNNY LODDEN

In the middle of all the andiamo-ing, Johnny Lodden stood up from his seat and slashed his index finger across his throat. It obviously wasn't good. On a 8♥5♣2♦ board and two million in the middle, he'd shoved Q♣Q♥ smack dab into Edward Ochana's K♠K♣. The turn and river didn't bail him out and Lodden's stack was reduced to half a million.

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Lodden commiserating with William Thorson

Players are finishing their last few hands and then headed off for a 90-minute dinner break. They'll be coming back around 8:15 to finish off the night.

Bring a space-heater.

*****

ELIMINATION OF THE HOUR

JP Kelly is out. In what was played out like a silent movie, the Team PokerStars Pro, moved all in for around 700,000 and was called by Theo Jorgensen. The Dane turned over A♣J♥ to Kelly's T♥T♦ and both waiting for the cameras to arrive. Not a word was said before or after the A♠A♦9♦3♠Q♥ board. Kelly simply got up from his chair and walked to the payout desk, stopping only to shake Jorgensen's hand on the way.

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JP Kelly

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REALLY COLD QUOTE OF THE HOUR

"Where's Maridu?" -Adam Levy to David Baker (who is the OTHER David Baker, and not Maridu's boyfriend) who was all-in and behind, to which Baker replied, "I'm five cards from going bust, and you're giving me sh-t?"

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PERSPECTIVE-OFFERING STATISTIC OF THE HOUR

In level 24, which we have just entered, the big blind is 30,000. That's the same size as a day one starting stack, all those moons ago.

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GOOD ANSWER OF THE HOUR

JC Alvarado to friend on the rail: "Do you want a beer?"
Friend: "Yes."

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TRIVIA POINT OF THE HOUR

The PokerStars qualifier and Supernova Michael Skender was interviewed by ESPN this morning, becoming the first German player to get the full "in the armchair" treatment.


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THE NEED TO RE-THINK THIS PLAN OF THE HOUR

The man smoking a cigarette in the no smoking area, and sending a plume of smoke along the corridor, hiding behind a trash can.

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in World Series of Poker