Day 1 completed
Day 1 completed
If not for the endless string of split pots, this $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship might be our very favorite event of the year to cover. Nowadays, only the big-buyin events feature intimate, highly skilled fields from top to near-bottom like this one.
Today's field was a strong one with 202 players -- nearly all of them faces you'd be familiar with -- turning up to the Rio with the buyin burning a hole in their pockets. Many of them torched through stacks in the early event in order to give this evening show their full attention. Like Tom Dwan, for example, who busted the $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em event just a few minutes before registration closed for this Championship. Dwan had a short and productive four levels over here on our side of the room, working his 30,000-chip stack to 61,000 by night's end.
Also in the mix were the likes of John Racener, Will Failla, Justin Smith, Ted Forrest, and Michael Mizrachi, but they were all cursed with a very short day and run out of the room within the first few levels. Also falling by the wayside was Francesco Barbero, one of the still-growing 2011 class of bracelet winners. Barbaro could easily justify the investment after taking down this event's little brother, the $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo event of a few days ago. He had a miserable day, though, and his last big bet went into his final pot during the closing level of the night.
Barbaro wasn't the only 2011 bracelet winner in the room, either. Allen Bari won Event #4 yesterday, and Eugene Katchalov took down Event #5, too; both men survived the day with chips to spare. Bari, in particular, had a good day, finishing up with 70,700 tucked safely inside his chip bag for the overnight soak.
Joining those survivors in tomorrow's Day 2 will be a significant crowd of familiar faces. Erik Seidel, Dwan, John Juanda, Mike Matusow, Daniel Negreanu, Todd Brunson, Barry Greenstein and a pair of Deebs (Shaun and Freddy) will headline the restart at 3:00 P.M. on Tuesday. That's today, if you're scoring at home. A few of those guys have chips with which to do some damage, too. Negreanu was one of the last to register, but he managed to stack up 51,800 by the time the clock wound down, and Freddy Deeb is very near the top with 82,800 chips.
From the looks of it, though, everyone's chasing Eric Buchman right now. He had a quiet day as far as table talk went, electing instead to let his chips do the talking. Buchman had a taller stack every time we walked past his table, and his finishing count of 105,500 will set the pace for Day 2.
We'll be back here tomorrow afternoon to pick up the action and play down as close to a final table as we can muster. Thanks for joining us; we'll see you in about 13 hours!
Sarah Grant gets the details on the free seminar series and how you can participate.
It's our very favorite time of the night.
The clock has been paused with ten minutes left in the level, and each table will play four more hands before bagging, tagging, and selling to the butcher in the store.
Men "The Master" Nguyen and Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier, got three bets in preflop and then three more after the flop came to put Nguyen all in.
The turn and river both bricked for Grospellier, and Nguyen doubled to 17,000.
David "Bakes" Baker made it two bets from middle position, and the action folded to David "ODB" Baker who called in the big blind.
It's the battle we've all been waiting for.
The flop fell , and ODB check-called a bet from Bakes. ODB check-called another bet after the paired the board on the turn, but led out after the fell on the river. Bakes called.
"Just queens," ODB announced, tabling for the nut-low.
Bakes opened for trip sixes, and the two split the pot. A bit anticlimactic. but that's O8 for ya.
"Erik, you didn't even thank me yet," Dan Shak said, looking up from his iPad. Seidel was across the table getting a massage from a therapist who is often seen with her elbows buried in Shak's spine instead.
"Why? Did she cut you short?" Seidel asked, not really understanding what was going on.
"No. You didn't thank me yet," Shak repeated. "You still owe me a 'thank you'. Do you know why yet?"
Seidel was puzzled, and the conversation was on the verge of getting awkward. There was a bit of a silent pause.
Shak continued, "I pretty much handed you the $100,000 at the Bellagio," Shak grinned across the felt. He was talking about the recent $100,000 Super High Roller event that Seidel won. Shak was deep in it, too, but Seidel won a couple massive pots from him on the way to the trophy.
Seidel's understated sense of humor is incredibly entertaining. "Oh," he said, suddenly aware. "That was very kind." A wry smirk came across his own face, perhaps as he thought back to that day a couple weeks ago when he added another seven figures of cash to his bank account.
We'd smile, too.