WSOP 2017: 52 players, 52 cards, one champion
A quick check-in to share the "so far" and "what's next" from the 2017 World Series of Poker Main Event as the midway point of Day 6 approaches.
The Brasilia room has grown relatively quiet as the money jumps increase and the tension rises. The cranberries are out as well.
At the day's second break just 52 players remained, from which just one will be drawn -- like a card from a deck -- as the next World Series of Poker Main Event champion.
At that point Dan Ott of Altoona, Pennsylvania had the most chips of the 52 after building a stack of more than 18 million.
Jack Sinclair, Scott Stewart, and David Guay were nearest then to Ott in the counts, with Ben Lamb coming back from the last break to collect more chips and move inside the top 10. Bryan Piccioli, Max Silver, Benjamin Pollak, and Antoine Saout were all also above the average.
At the other end of the spectrum of poker fortune, the first two-hour level today saw a number of familiar names fall out of the counts entirely, among them Ihar Soika (81st, $85,482), Martin Finger (80th, $85,482), Matthias De Meulder ($85,482), Nicolas Cardyn (74th, $85,482) and Ian Johns (73rd, $85,482).
The day's second level -- Level 28 of the tournament -- saw the prizes start to reach six figures just before Kenny Hallaert's dream of making back-to-back final tables came to a halt (64th, $101,444). Facing a river all-in from 64-year-old John Hesp, Hallaert called with trip aces only to lose to eights full, then chatted with Kara Scott about it for those watching the broadcast.
Soon after Connor Drinan went out in 56th ($121,188), then Paul Van Nunes, about whom we were writing earlier today, fell in 55th in a hand versus chip leader Ott, also earning $121,188.
They're back now for Level 29, with a plan to head to dinner after that before returning to play down to the last 27.
Then after that, nine... then six... then three... then... a champion.
WSOP photos by PokerPhotoArchive.com.