|Cornel Andrew Cimpan||58,300|
Ten levels of poker have come and gone here in Event #9, and Day 1 of the $1,500 Pot-Limit Hold'em event is a wrap.
A field of runners 654 strong turned up this afternoon to get this tournament under way, a slight increase over last year's turnout. And what a ridiculously stacked field we had! Defending champion JP Kelly was on hand to try and go back-to-back, but he was unable to escape the first day this time around, the victim of a particularly brutal table that he joined midway through the first level.
A whole pot load of other notables were also in the mix very briefly at the start of the day. Joe Sebok, Annette Obrestad, Jeff Madsen, Lacey Jones, Chris Ferguson, Antonio Esfandiari, Joe Cada, Lex Veldhuis, Jon Aguiar, Gavin Griffin -- those are just a few of the familiar faces who couldn't even escape the first half of their opening session. The full list of bust-outs is too long to discuss here, so we'll tell you who is still alive heading into tomorrow's moving day instead.
James "Flushy" Dempsey had himself one whale of a day, and he is going to lead the pack into Day 2. His finishing count of 205,900 is quite impressive, but it hasn't put him all the way in the clear just yet. Scott Montgomery was in and out of the chip lead for the balance of the night, and another late surge put him all the way up to 193,000 at day's end, he and Flushy setting the pace for the rest of the field. Jim Lewis (154,400) is another name you'll be hearing from tomorrow, and JJ Liu is also right up there with the big boys after a few late pots were pushed into her corner.
Apart from the big stacks, we're still blessed with a strong contingent of notable names in the remaining field. Joe Serock is hanging around after an up-and-down day, and Tom Schneider, Jason Potter, and Christian Harder are all fighting to put themselves in a position to make a deep run. Jonathan Little, Todd Terry, Steve O'Dwyer, and Melissa Hayden are also still in contention to win this thing, though they'll have significant work to do tomorrow.
By the time the chip bags came out, 90% of the field had already been dispatched of. Just 65 players survived this bloodbath of an opening day, and there's only room for 63 of them on the payout sheet. That means two unlucky souls will wake up tomorrow and come to the Amazon for just a few unhappy minutes of poker, only to leave with the proverbial wooden spoon for their efforts.
We'll be here at 2:30 p.m sharp, and we'll be set to bring you all of the action from the bubble and beyond as the charge to the final table heats up.
On the final hand of the evening, we lost another player.
A flop of was out on board when we walked up, and JJ Liu led out with a bet of 9,100. Her opponent raised the pot, up to 38,400, and Liu moved all in with the covering stack. The other player made the call for his own tournament life, turning up for two pair. Liu showed for the naked flush draw, but it wasn't a draw for long.
The dropped on fourth street, pulling Liu into a big lead and leaving her opponent dead to four outs. The on the river was safe, though, and that knockout moves Liu up to about 122,000 chips and into the ranks of the chip leaders just as the night comes to a close.
Liv Boeree opened the pot with a 4,200 raise and Tim Kahlmeyer put her all in. Boeree called.
Board: and Liv is gone. Kahlmeyer is now up to 29,000 chips.
Chris Kassela got his stack into the middle preflop with , only to run smack into Scott Montgomery's .
The case king on the flop was devastating for Kassela, but things would start to improve when the put on board after fourth street. Kassela was looking for one of the two remaining aces to stay alive, but the river was most certainly not one of them.
Kassela is out, and that pot pushes Montgomery back to 170,000. "I told you guys I'd get into the money," he said as he stacked that pot. We'll point out that he's not quite there yet...
After another series of discussions, the floor staff has decided that the proper course of action is to call it a night after the conclusion of this level as originally scheduled. That'll make for a couple unhappy bubblers tomorrow afternoon, but the decision comes as a courtesy to the players (and media) who'd like to get some sleep tonight. The announcement was met with mixed reviews among the players.
With ten minutes left in the level, the clock has been paused and a card drawn. It was a six, and each table will play that many hands before the bags come out.
We missed the majority of the action, but we'll tell you what we know about this big pot that unfolded while we had our backs turned.
The board ended up reading , and there was heavy heads-up action. Joe Gotlieb and Mike Parizon each put a chunk of chips into the pot on the flop, and the rest of Gotlieb's ~55,000-chip stack went in on the turn. Parizon was right there to call him down with , but it was no good. Gotlieb tabled , further improving to quads when the river landed on board.
After that big exchange, Gotlieb has shot himself up into the top tier of the chip counts with 115,000, dropping the once-mighty Parizon all the way down to 38,000.
A player in middle position opened to 3,500, and the button made the smooth call. From the small blind, Aaron Raap squeezed all in for 13,200, and Scott Montgomery made a big overcall from the big blind. The original raiser ducked out of the way, but the button called again to put a nice pot up for grabs going to the flop.
It came , and Montgomery bet out 12,000, successfully folding the third player in the hand and putting him heads up with a chance to eliminate Raap. But Raap was in good shape:
The turn was safe for Raap, and so was the on the river. A pair of queens is plenty good, and Raap has pulled in a triple up to 43,500.
Montgomery has taken a step back to a still-quite-healthy 108,000.
James Dempsey - 190,000
Jim Lewis - 177,000
Scott Montgomery - 122,000
Mike Parizon - 94,000
Daniel Burke - 88,000