Event #16, the $10,000 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship, attracted 100 of the world’s best poker players, but after three days of play just one remained in 29-year-old Jason Mercier. In doing so, the Team PokerStars Pro, who hails from South Florida, captured his fourth gold bracelet, making him only the 39th player in history to do so.
Not only did Mercier take home a $273,335 first-place prize, he won an untold fortune, it appears, in side bets. Mercier, who made several bets that he would ship gold, wouldn’t confirm how much he won, other than to say it was “well over what first was.” Nice work if you can get it, sir.
Mercier topped a tough final table that included Mike Watson (2nd/$168,936), Lamar Wilkinson (3rd/$120,025), David Grey (5th/$62,810), Stephen Chidwick (6th/$46,277), Alex Luneau (7th/$34,522), and Herezel Zalewski (8th/$26,078).
Meanwhile, over in Event #14, the $1,500 Millionaire Maker, what had started with 7,190 entrants ended after Day 3 on Monday with just 15 players remaining. Italy’s Alessio Dicesare and his stack of 7.2 million lead the way. A few other notables still in contention for the $1,065,403 first-place prize (and a very juicy $1,000,000 second-place prize, for that matter) are Garrett Greer (4.875 million), Sofia Lövgren (3.375 million), and Craig Gold (1.34 million).
The remaining players returned to action at 11 am PT and will play down to a winner today. This event was supposed to be at final table status at start of day today, so hopefully, action is fast and furious to catch up.
Just 24 of 2,242 players remain in Event #17, the $1,000 No-Limit Hold’em championship, with Danny Wong out in front with 1.058 million leading the way. Others still alive at start of play today are Roberto Romanello (885,000), Chris Leong (686,000), and Jeff Gross (93,000), just to name a few.
The final two dozen players return at noon PT on Tuesday to play down to a winner, who will take home $316,920.
Over in Event #18, the $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. championship, what began with 400 runners after Day Two has just 16 remaining. Jared Talarico and his stack of 825,000 are out in front. Pushing to topple him and grab the $259,730 first-place prize are Chino Rheem (620,000), Frankie O’Dell (286,000), and Eli Elezra (199,000).
Chris Bjorin (17th/$7,239), Bruno Fitoussi (18th/$7,23), Naoya Kihara (21st/$7,239), Phil Hellmuth (45th/$5,081), Mike Leah (55th/$4,760), and Glenn Cozen (60th/$$4,584) all cashed on Day Two.
One interesting WSOP history note: Cozen finished runner-up to Jim Bechtel in the 1993 WSOP Main Event.
Day Three will get underway at 2 pm PT on Tuesday and play down to a winner.
Looking at Event #19, the $1,000 Pot-Limit Omaha, what began with 1,106 players (creating a $995,400 prize pool) after Day One has just 136 remaining. Michael Luong and his stack of 197,200 are out in front as the day’s play kicks off. Fighting him back for the $185,317 first-place prize are Ismael Bojang (78,100), Ryan D’Angelo (59,100), and Bob Ciaffone (56,200). Those players and more will return for Day Two action at noon PT on Tuesday.
Then there was the elite Event #20, the $10,000 Razz Championship, which attracted 100 players on Monday. More than half of them would fall over the course of Day One, including Daniel Negreanu, Jeff Lisandro, and Rep Porter. Meanwhile, David Benyamine bagged up 353,500 to lead the 45 survivors, while 14-time bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth sits second with 319,000. Should be an exciting day of action on this one today.
Day Two will see the remaining players return with the hopes of making the money at the final 15, though everyone will have their eyes firmly fixed on the $273,338 first-place prize.