Monday, July 13, 2009

WSOP Main Event -- After Day Five

Unfortunately, the Main Event of the World Series of Poker got a lot more boring for me personally this weekend, with the eliminations on Days 3-5 of former champions Greg Raymer, Jesus Ferguson, Phil Hellmuth, Bobby Baldwin and Dan Harrington. Meanwhile, on the celebrity side, George Kostanza was also knocked out on Day 3, and even actor Lou Diamond Phillips, who managed to make it all the way to the very last hand of Day 5, got eliminated in 186th place before they packed it up for the night in the Rio when he got allin preflop with KK against AA and AA. Gotta love it.

As an aside, could we have had worse coverage across the major media outlets of Phil Hellmuth's bustout hand? Sure the guy is an absolute douchebag, but the simple fact remains that most of the people who care enough to read blogs for live updates of the main event will clearly want to know how Hellmuth busted, and more importantly, how he behaved when it happened. Based on last year's late elimination, my guess is not well. But, that's just a guess since basically nobody out there could tell me much of anything about how he busted. Hellmuth busted late on Day 4, within the last few eliminations of the day (I think), and all I was able to find anywhere was a simple statement that he was gone. No how, no when, no what he did. That's poor right there. I guess I read somewhere that ESPN was being kinda dick about controlling the information on the goings-on at their featured tv tables -- where I assume Hellmuth was playing, if ESPN's head is not up its ass -- but to not even be able to get a report on how the biggest public spectacle left in the Main Event busted from the tournament is just sad.

Anyways, on a positive note, there are still a good number of people who I would be interested in seeing final table this thing still alive as of the end of Day 5. Heading into Day 6, we have 185 runners remaining out of the 6494 who started, and we are already well into the money here, which started when we had 648 players remaining. At this point, most of the people who adopted a strategy of just waiting until the money back with seven or eight hundred players left are now long gone, and what we're left with is a field of 185 runners who are mostly going to be strong, aggressive players with their sights set not on moving up another payout plateau but rather amassing enough chips to final table the main event, thereby ensuring over one and a quarter million as a guaranteed payout in addition to sponsorship by one of the major poker sites to boot.

Although all those former Main Event champions above were eliminated over the weekend, a few still remain in the field of 185. Peter Eastgate, last year's Main Event champion, continued his huge recovery from around 8000 chips late on Day Two, closing the Day 5 action with 927k in chips. Eastgate will be seated along with Phil Ivey to start Day 6, who survived a set over set debacle early in the day to nearly double on his last hand on Day 5 when Ivey's pocket 8s held up against AQo. Eastgate's 927k in chips joins Ivey's 1.38 million-chip stack at Blue 18 in the Amazon Room, along with current tournament chip leader Warren Zackey, who currently holds 4.872 million chips.

Joe Hachem, the 2004 WSOP ME champion, will start Day 6 at Blue 38, sitting on 540k in chips, joined by J.C. Tran (720k) and last year's final tablist Dennis Phillips (1 million) as well as six other players whose names I do not recognize.

Other notable players still remaining in the field include David Benyamine, who will headline Blue 16 on Monday with 764k in chips. Prahlad Friedman is still alive, with 715k in chips, and will join Tom "Donkeybomber" Schneider (3.168 million) -- currenty in 4th place on the tournament leaderboard -- at Blue 20 to start the day. Blue 30 will also be an interesting stop for those covering the event, as Euro pro Bertran "ElkY" Grospellier (973k) and young pro Joe Sebok (992k) will begin the day at the same table and with very similar-sized stacks. Blue 44 will be another hotspot, where Antonio "the Magician" Esfandiari will start in third place at his table with 1.227 million in chips at a table that includes former top-ten chipstack in this event and apparent tax cheat Eric Cloutier. Blair Rodman, co-author of the popular Kill Phil poker strategy books, will be seated at Green 155 with 905k in chips along with eight names I do not recognize, so Rodman may be in good shape for the early allin and double in addition to many of the others I have named above.

With 185 runners remaining and 30k starting stacks, the average chipstack to start Day 6 should be 1.053 million. This means that most of the pros and other well-known players mentioned above will head into Monday's action at noon PT with at least around average stacks. Even those with 750k or so are just a few blind-and-ante steals away from average, so there is plenty of play left for the big guns remaining in the 2009 WSOP. Looking at the money to be awarded, those who finish between 185th and 163rd will receive $36,626, while 100th-162nd are slated to get $40,288, and then after that the payouts will climb approximately every table (nine spots) from there, starting at $47,003 for 91st to 99th place, $57,991 for 82nd to 90th place, $68,979 for 73rd to 81st, and $90,344 for 64th to 72nd. Once we reach 55th to 63rd we will cross the six-figure plateau at $108,047, while 46th to 54th will pay $138,568, 37th to 45th $178,857, and 28th to 36th, $253, 941, over the quarter million mark. My guess is that they won't get to this level on Monday, but there will still small fortunes to be won with every flip of the river by the time Monday's action heads into the late hours.

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Blogger Heffmike said...

this read pretty clearly to me.

10:39 PM  
Blogger StB said...

If Hellmuth is an absolute douchebag then why do you care how he busted or if he threw a tantrum? You are basically condoning his actions that wanting to know what he does and encouraging more of it in the future.

10:39 PM  
Blogger Memphis MOJO said...

"as a guaranteed payout in addition to sponsorship by one of the major poker sites to boot."

Any idea how much the sponsorship money is?

11:51 PM  
Blogger Irongirl01 said...

the field is still loaded just that you may not have heard of some of them. . blair hinkle won a braclet along with brother grant last year. Eugene katchalov is a wpt winner. Then you have Owen crowe who went real deep last year in the ME (top twenty I think) as well as a recent tv wsop final table. Hac Dang is brother of Urindanger and is a top cash game player himself. Matt Affleck FTOPS winner.

1:26 AM  

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