Well the World Series of Poker has been under way at the Rio All Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas since May 28th, and already they’ve awarded fifteen gold bracelets. And with 57 events planned, there is still plenty of poker still to be played. So with that, I thought it was a good time to give you an update on some of the highlights so far.
The excitement started early in event #2, the Poker Players Championship. Just the buy in, $50,000, is enough to make this an exciting event. Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi, his brother Robert, John Juanda, Daniel Alaei and Nick Schulman all played through a field of 116 players to meet in the final 9.
In the end The Grinder fought his was to the win and the $1.5 million prize. I’ve played at the Venetian with The Grinder, and his name is very appropriate. Nobody is more willing to sit and grind out hand after hand for hours on end more than Miz. Congrats to him on a very well deserved win.
Event #3, a $1500 No Limit Hold Em event, had over 4,000 entrants when it began, so the economy isn’t hurting things too much out at the WSOP. While Aadam Daya of Canada hoisted the bracelet when it was over, Men “The Master” Nguyen played solidly into 46th place, and announced he came to the 2010 WSOP with intentions of adding to his 6 bracelets.
Event #10, the $10,000 buy in Seven Card Stud World Championship would prove the Master correct, as he snatched that 7th bracelet and $1.4 million dollars for his first place finish. Men is one of my favorite players on the planet, and it is great to see him prove how great of a player he is. Also at the final table was “The Grinder” Mizrachi, who finished 7th, and proved his win in event #2 was no fluke.
Event 11 nearly cost a lot of players a lot of money, as they had bet that Tom “Durrr” Dwan would not win his first bracelet this year. From the rumors I heard, the betting totals are well into the millions. Dwan nearly bankrupted a lot of players when he finished second to New Zealand pro Simon Watt. While Dwan didn’t win it here, I still wouldn’t count him out the rest of the series. He is a solid player who is capable of winning any event he enters.
Event #15, the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo World Championship, almost provided one of nicest surprises of the tournament, when Jennifer Harman nearly took it down before being knocked out in third place. In the end, Tennessee resident Frank Kassela outplayed Allen Kessler, Steve Zolotow, John Juanda (again), and Dario Mineri to win his first bracelet.
For some of my predictions, here are their results so far:
Phil Hellmuth has one cash, event #8, in 15th place. This was a solid run for him and I still expect a few more this year.
That’s it. He is the only one of the players I predicted to do well this year to even cash yet. But remember, the tournament isn’t even half way through yet. There is still a ton of poker to play, and millions of dollars to be won.
I’ll be at the Rio beginning next weekend reporting directly from the floor. I expect to get some great pictures and interesting stories. I hope you stick around to read them. And if you will be in the Vegas area next week, let me know. I’d love to meet you.