There have already been so many epic moments at the 2016 World Series of Poker. Sunday’s action at the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas was no different.
Paul Volpe sought out the second bracelet of his career when he entered Event #18, the $1,500 Eight Game Mix, along with 490 other poker players. And he made it happen.
Volpe bested Jason Stockfish in a quick heads-up battle, shortly after Stockfish knocked out Ron Ware. The blind structure in this tournament forced quick action heads-up. Neither player had more than 25 bigs when the tournament got down to the final two players.
Stockfish, an Ohio resident, didn’t have much in the way of a WSOP resume prior to the start of this tournament. And he was unable to conquer his first bracelet, but he did walk away with a nice parting gift of $60,882. Volpe, already considered one of the best players in the world, got $149,943 and some nice gold jewelry to take home to Pennsylvania after the Series.
Howard Lederer and Daniel Negreanu aren’t exactly best of friends, although The Professor did release a public apology for his actions at Full Tilt prior to Black Friday through Kid Poker’s pre-Series blog post.
But the two have feuded, mostly over Lederer’s sister Annie Duke and her role in the saga, for many years. Both players were competing for the same prize on Saturday and Sunday in Event #16, the $10,000 2-7 Draw Lowball. And both were sent to the exits on the tournament’s second day.
The 124 players left in the Millionaire Maker, Event #14, are halfway to the bracelet ceremony. Two players in the tournament will walk away with at least $1 million. There were 7,190 total entries.
Mohsin Charania finished up play on Sunday with more chips than anyone else. He’s won over $300,000 in his career at the World Series of Poker, as has Frank Rusnak, the man with the second largest chip stack in the field, so neither are likely to tumble easily. Both players are seeking career bracelet number one.
But the main story in this tournament so far is the return of Alex Jacob to the poker world.
Jacob quit playing poker professionally a few years back despite being highly successful. Last year, the former Full Tilt Poker pro crushed another classic and popular game on the long-running TV show Jeopardy. He became a fan favorite after winning the Jeopardy Tournament of Champions.
Now he’s back at the WSOP trying to win $1 million. Jacob has 304,000 chips at start of play on Monday, which is right around the average stack size.
Event #18, the $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. is packed with big names and personalities. That includes the likes of Phil Hellmuth, Barry Greenstein, Greg Raymer, Mike Sexton, Norman Chad, Chino Rheem, Eli Elezra, and Robert Mizrachi.
But out of 400 players, many of whom are household names, a guy you’ve probably never heard of tops the charts after Day One. That man’s name is George Trigeorgis from South Florida. His WSOP resume includes two small cashes at this year’s series.
Should he win this three-day event, Trigeorgis just might become a household name. After Day One, the Floridian has 160,200 chips and a dominating chip lead. But there are still 144 players left and only 60 will get paid.
Monday marks the start of two new WSOP tournaments. The most intriguing event is #20, the $10,000 Seven Card Razz, which should bring out dozens of familiar faces. Also, Event #19, the $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha, should have a large field given the low buy-in and craziness of PLO.