Thursday, July 07, 2005

The World Series of Poker Main Event Day 1A

Well this is it. I've been busting my ass for five weeks. All of that was preperation for the next week. Are you excited? I'm bursting with fruit favor. I couldn't sleep last night. This is the biggest moment for me as a blogger, journalist, poker player, and writer.

My poker blog will be the place to be to get live WSOP updates. I am not going to be doing specific chip counts. So don't ask me for them. Seriously. I'm a one man show, not including Flipchip who will be taking some of the best WSOP photos out there. Don't forget to check out his Word Series of Poker photo gallery. However, if I walk by Amir Vahedi's table and he tells me he had $20K in chips, I'll tell you about it. I will be keep close tabs on friends like Wil Wheaton and Shirley Rosario and any other bloggers like Double As. I will crank out as many updates as I can on them. They get priority over your Uncle Tony or Cousin Sal.

I got here at 9am to snag my press seat in media row. Al Cant Hang is here too. The vultures are here. Am I bitter that some nitwit from a major media outlet shows up one day before the main event and expects to steal my seat? Fuck yeah. I've paid my dues man! I've been here covering Limit Hold'em events at 4am. And no one is going to push me out of my media seat.

ESPN is setting up their "featured TV table." I'll give you updates on that. I think it's picked at random. But who knows.

If you don't know, I took 6th in the WSOP Media/Celebrity tournament yesterday. Everyone here has been buzzing about my bad beat on Shannon Elizabeth. All the ESPN crew guys came over to me this morning to hear all about it. Yeah, I got buzz. I'm now "that guy who bad beat the American Pie chick." I guess that's not a bad thing to be.

Of course everyone else is talking about the London bombings. I've befriended several Brits over the last five weeks and as a New Yorker, my deepest sympathies go out to everyone in London. I wish I could say that security here has been beefed up. It hasn't. There's more guards around for the main event, but for the most part, it's not much an increase like my brother is seeing in NYC.

Moving on...

Wil Wheaton plays today, so if you are one of his loyal followers, I'll do my best to give his minion's updates. Stay tuned...

****** Live Blogging Updates ******

10:55am... Bouncin Round the Room: I stopped by Wil's table to wish him luck. He said he had been in a holding pattern the last few days and weeks. Now he's a little nervous, but ready. I spotted Greg Raymer, Humberto Brenes, Liz Lieu, Carlos Mortenson, and Lee Watkinson.

11:10am... Cards are in the air! Tournament Director Johnny Grooms announced, "Shuffle up and deal!"

11:21am... First player has been busted! 5660 to go.

11:25am... Jen Harman arrived late at the featured TV table.

11:30am... Bouncin Round the Room: There are thouaands of railbirds here. There are no more cash games and every table is filled up! There is an eeire sound of silence here. Just the clatter of chips can be heard. Everyone seems tense and nervous. I heard that a certain WSOP bracelet winner was robbed by two hookers. He got his bracelet stolen too. I cannot confirm this, but I heard it from several reliable sources. I'll save his name for the "book" along with plenty of other non-blogworthy stories. And yeah, there has been an increase in prostitutes here at the Rio. The highrollers bring in the high class hookers. They hangout at the bar where Otis and I drink at during out dinner breaks. They've also been congregating in the hallways.

11:45am... Having serious connection problems. I wandered by Wil's table and he was scooping a small pot. Two seats to his right in seat 4 is... Paul Darden. Lucky for Wil, eh?

12:01pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I spotted a few other big names playing... Isabelle Mecier, Shannon Elizabeth, Jennifer Tilly, Mike Sexton, Barry Greenstein, Tony Cousineau, Toto Leonidas, Marco Traniello, Gus Hansen, Clonie Gowen, Chris Grigorian, David Grey, Julian Gardner, Phil Laak, Victor Ramdin, Mike Wattel, Patty Gallagher, Scott Fischman, Greg Raymer, Matt Matros, David Singer, Tomer Benvinisti, Brad Garrett, Carlos Mortensen, Liz Lieu, Steve Zolotow, Devilfish, Scotty Nguyen, Jesus, Erik Seidel, John Murphy, and Johnny "Fuckin" Chan.

12:30pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I met Ace from Fan 960 a sporst radio show in Calgary! Canucks are cool.

12:35pm... Featured Table update: Jen Harman's stack was crippled. Her Queens full lost to a straight flush. She had the Hilton Sisters and flopped a set, turned a full boat. Unfortunately he caugth a staright flush with 8d-9d.

1:05pm... Wil Wheaton update: Wil has $8900 in chips. He peaked at $11K and lost a pot to Paul Darden. On teh button Wil had A-J. He flopped toppair with top kicker. They both checked the turn and Wil called a $500 bet on the river. Darden had J-J for a set. Wil is hanging in there.

1:10pm... Shirley Rosario update: I found her! She has $10,875 in chips and showed up late in true Hellmuthian fashion. Not on purpose, mind you, she had to deal with some personal stuff. It's all good now and she's probably the best player at her table.

1:22pm... Bouncin Round the Room: During the break I heard some funny stuff. One guy in a Party Poker shirt was on the phone with his wife... "I'm the best player at my table and I'm getting killed."

Another guy in jean shorts and a muscles shirt was chatting with his friend. "As long as I out last my ex-wife's new husband, that's all that matters. She married a fuckin' fish."

Lastly, here's what one guy on a cellphone said, "I got Gus Hansen at my table. I almost pissed myself."

1:30pm... I found out that Jean Gaspard ran into A-A with K-K. Ouch. He was crippled and was just busted. Jen Tilly lost a big pot when she ran into quad Jacks. Live poker is so rigged. Oddjack's whipping boy Josh Arieh was crippled. He's got a shortstack.

1:44pm... Featured Table update: Jen Harman was just eliminated. She had the saddest look on her face. I almost bust into tears at the sight of agony in her eyes.

1:55pm... I've been asked about the Player of the Year standings. Here is the Top 50 thanks to Poker Wire.
1 Allen Cunningham 466
2 Chris "Jesus" Ferguson 459
3 Mark Seif 428
4 Minh Nguyen 329
5 Cyndy Violette 317
6 Jennifer Harman 316
7 Devilfish Ulliott 306
8 Chad Brown 304
9 Toto Leonidas 290
10 Erik Seidel 270
11 (tie) Marco Traniello 262
11 Phil Ivey 262
13 (tie) Kenny Robbins 244
13 Mike Wattel 244
15 Morgan Machina 243
16 (tie) Layne Flack 238
16 Barry Greenstein 238
18 Scott Fischman 233
19 CT Law 232
20 Michael Mizrachi 230
21 (tie) Harry Demetriou 225
21 Dan Schmiech 225
23 Phil Gordon 221
24 Tony Ma 219
25 (tie) David Pham 218
25 Jason Steinhorn 218
27 (tie) David Cossio 217
27 Matt Glantz 217
29 (tie) Todd Brunson 216
29 Dennis Perry 216
31 Bill Gazes 214
32 Quinn Do 207
33 Derek 'Neverwin' Woolf 201
34 (tie) Farzad Bonyadi 200
34 Andre Boyer 200
34 Eric Froelich 200
34 L. Gosney 200
34 Edward Moncada 200
34 Thom Werthman 200
40 Tony Cousineau 196
41 Liz Lieu 192
42 John Bonetti 190
43 (tie) Joe Awada 186
43 Paul Kroh 186
43 Steve Zolotow 186
46 (tie) Annie Duke 184
46 Minh Ly 184
48 Can Kim Hua 183
49 (tie) David Chiu 182
49 Steve Hohn 182
2:01pm... Here are some photos taken minutes ago from the hardest working photographer at the WSOP... Flipchip!

What's on Shirley's iPod?

Jen's somber eyes

Gotta love the shades

Gus praying to the poker gods to increase his short stack

Humberto likes to Tango

Don't forget to check out Flipchip's 2005 World Series of Poker photo gallery!

2:25pm... Wil Wheaton update: He has $9800 and doing OK.

2:27pm... Shirley Rosario update: She's shortstacked after she ran into K-K with her J-J. The flop came 10 high and she thought the guy wa smaking a move on her with a flush draw so she moved all in. She'll be OK. She's really skilled at playing with a short stack. She seemed confident when we spoke. She assured me thats he'd get it back by the break.

2:30pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I found out through BJ that there is 5,661 confirmed entrants this year. Day 1 = 1885. Day 2 = 1878. Day 3 = 1898. I saw Layne Flack rush into the poker room late.

2:36pm... Chip Counts? Jen Tilly has about 5K. Raymer has about 6K. Devilfish has 12K. My Main Man Freddy Deeb has 12K. Paul Darden has about 14K.

2:46pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I heard a ruckus on the other side of the poker roon and bolted over with my pad and pen. Jesus is sitting at a table near the ropes, so he had a ton of railbirds. Jesus showed pocket Aces. His opponent had K-9 and flopped two pair on a flop of K-9-4. The turn was a Queen, but the river was a 4. He had a higher two pair and won.

3:10pm... Bouncin Round the Room: 10 minutes before break, I bolt for the bathrooms. Traffic is redirected through the WSOP Expo area where there are booths set up from various poker organizations inlcuding Poker Player Newspaper. That's where the Poker Prof has been holed up manning the booth. I was taking a leak at the urinal and guess who's taking a wiz to my right? Mike Sexton. I asked him how many chips he had... he said "About $18K."

3:14pm... Wil & Shirely update: Wil has $8K in chips and Shirley was crippled. She has $2K.

3:15pm... Featured Table update: Greg Raymer was just moved here. He lost a lot of his stack when some guy rivered him with 3-3 after Greg flopped trips.

Elmo has $9K in chips

3:24pm... Boucnin Round the Room: It's a zoo here at the WSOP especially in the hallways during breaks. People are smoking like champs or rushing to the bathroom to piss. It reminds me of a cross between Mardi Gras and setbreak at a Phish concert... minus the spun out hippie girls, the aroma of patchouli, and someone smoking dope in the bathroom.

3:38pm... Editor's Note: Ok guys, some of your comments are getting old especially the ones about jokes with the chip counts. If you want to make jokes... get your own blog. I'm busting my ass here and it's not funny anymore. If this continues I will ban you from my comments.

3:50pm... Featured Table update: Greg Raymer doubled up with pocket aces against someone's Hilton Sisters.

4:00pm... How about some more of Flipchip's photos?

Sorry about cracking your aces yesterday, Shannon!

Clonie's massage (I'd do it for free)

Isbaelle's chip trick

BoDog Girls at the Expo

4:20pm... Shirley update: She's back up to $5500. She flopped a set with 99 and caught a four flush when she was dominated A-Q to her A-9.

4:35pm... Bouncin Round the Room: The Rio is out of Red Bull. There has been a mutiny. We have 156 tables remaining. Here are some bust outs: John Murphy, Bret Jungblut, Jennifer Tilly, and Thunder Keller.

4:45pm... Featured Table update: Greg Raymer told me he has almost $24K in chips.

5:00pm... Wil & Shirley update: Good news for Shirley. She's up to $8900 in chips! What a comeback. Wil Wheaton has been busted. He lost a coinflip with his As-Js to pocket sevens. He seemed very upset. He was happy to know that so many people were rooting him on.

5:15pm... Bouncin Round the Room: Another break. I took the preemptive piss. The media room looks like a refugee center.

5:20pm... Feature Table update: Greg Raymer went from $3,500 to $43K since he arrived at the TV table.

5:22pm... Chip counts? Jesus has $23K. Barry Greenstein has $7500. Devilfish has $12K. Lane Flack has $27K. Josh Arieh stormed back to $23K. Steve Z has $25K. Erik Seidel has less than $29K. Isabelle Mercier has less than $9K. Gus Hansen and Unabomber have about $8K each.

6:00pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I ran into a long time reader... Lou! He's a good egg and has been one of the original readers of my poker blog. Lee Watkinson went from $13K to $48K according to Lisa from Pokewire. I ran into Shannon Elizabeth and she has $17K. She asked me if I won the Media event since I had such a monster stack. I also ran into Dr. Mark Burtman. He has about less than $2K in chips. I saw Mike Sexton again. He has $20K. I spotted Unabomber giving an interview with ESPN. He was elimianted.

6:10pm.. Final Wil Wheaton update: Some clarification on that hand. Wil has left the building. Yeah, he was busted with a short stack when his AJs ran into a pair. He lost his coinflip and was eliminated. I have a quick exit interview and will be giving that to Sean at Lord Admiral Card Club podcast.

6:15pm... Shirley Rosario update: Sad news kids. Shirley is out. She lost a chunk of her stack when she folded JJ to a guy who moved all in on a ragged flop. She showed her hand and he flipped over K-K. Good laydown. She was busted by Marco Traniello (aka Jen Harman's husband). Shirley flopped two pair from the blinds but Marco had a set. She was a little sad during our brief exit interview.

6:30pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I spotted a dejected Freddy Deeb in the hallway. His 9-9 ran into J-7, who flopped a straight. Harry Demetriou was also busted.

6:34pm... I will be going on dinner break shortly, which means cocktails at the hooker bar with Otis and Al Cant Hang. I'm leaving to beat the dinner rush. SO I shall be back soon. More updates to come.

8:00pm... Bouncin Round the Room: I headed out to the hooker bar with some freidns of mine including Grubby, Al Cant Hang and Otis. We called a few bloggers for Dial-a-Shot. On our list were G-Rob, Bad Blood, my brother Derek, Halverson, and Iggy. We would have called Boy Genius, but it was way past his bed time. I had a couple of Red Stripes, the official eer of the Tao of Poker. While at the bar, I flagged down several pros for chip counts. Scott Fischman told me over $30K. Tomer Benvenisti said over $36K. The lovely Liz Lieu told me she had $36K.

8:15pm... Some Shououts: I've been getting some great information on Irish and British poker players from a few experts. I share my stories and vice versa. covers Irish players which is run by Tom & Mike "Lucky Blind", two kick ass bloggers. They have been hooking me up with chipcounts for Joe Rafferty, who's currently the chipleader with $75K. Another Irishman Andy Black, who cashed in both shorthanded NL events, has about $27K. There's a good story about an Irish bloke who dropped an F-Bomb but got away with it by convincing the floor person that he uttered an Irish curse and not "fuck." Yeah, you can't say Fuck in English, but you can say it in another language. The good folks over at Blonde Poker, TK and Jennifer have been giving me updates on the British players like Ben Grundy $27K and that Julain gardner was busted with his K-K losing to A-A.

9:00pm... Brad Garrett has been busted. Joe Rafftery lost a few chips and he has $50K. The boys at Card Player guesstimate that Greg Raymer is about 3rd in chips behind Lee Watkinson and Pascal Perrault.

9:13pm... Connection Problems. Agggh! I'm having them again. I will be trying to work that out while writing one of two articles right now. I'll be multitasking trying to whip up something for Fox Sports along with something for Poker Player Newspaper and, where you can all of my recaps from almost every single WSOP event.. By the way, I just scored an interview with Phil Gordon that will be featured on Poker Player Newspaper.

9:19pm... On my way to the bathroom, our roving sideline reporter, Al Cant Hang told me about a crazy hand involving Jesus. He caught a two outer on the turn when his J-J beat Q-T when a Queen hit on the flop. He also said that Barry Greenstein was just busted.

9:25pm... Isabelle Mercier was busted by Gentleman John Gale. Greg Raymer's wife, who is sitting in front of us, told BJ and myself that Isabelle was sick all day too with a really bad sore throat. She had been a little sluggish all day and now we know why.

9:30pm... Bouncin Round the Room: Layne Flack has a 106 deegree fever according to Jen from Pokewrire. When I saw him, I thought he had a nice long bender at dinner break. Nope, he's really sick. He got a doctor's note to try to change days, but they would let him switch days.

9:37pm... Bouncin Round the Room: The Irish Twins told me about our good friend with the Gaelic F-Bomb. He apparently said it again, but he didn't get away with it this time. He doubled up and yelled, "Fuck yeah!" And walked away knowing he would be assessed a 10 minute penalty. Gotta love those wacky Irish poker players!

9:45pm... My brother wanted to see a picture of My Main Man Freddy Deeb. And you know what? Flip Chip snagged one earlier in the day. Here it is!

10:00pm... Players are on a break. Two more levels to go! Greg Raymer told us that he has $58K in chips.

10:15pm... Boo-ya! I just found out that my last article is currently on the front page of Fox Sports... check it out. I'll post a screen capture here, just in case it's not still up.

11:55pm... Sorry for the lack of updates. I was writing an article for Fox Sports. Anyway, there are 85 tables remaining. Devilfish, Johnny "Fuckin" Chan, and Mike Caro have all be knocked out.

11:59pm... One chick, one chip, one chair. Shannon ELizabeth is down to one $500 chip. Can she pull it off?

12:03am... Featured Table update: Break time and Raymer has about $49K in chips.

12:08am... Bouncin Round the Room: Heather from Poker Wire said that there were guys using the lades room... five in fact. And only one washed their hands.

12:15am... Dank Hank update: While sitting in press row, a guy tapped me on the shoulder. It was Dank Hank from Beantown. He's a reader of my blog and many blogs. It was cool to run into him. He qualified online and now he's got $12K in chips. Let's see if he can make it to day two.

1:15am... We have some bust outs: Josh Arieh, Ted Forrest, Humberto Brenes, Dr. Mark Burtman, Oliver Tse, David Grey, Marco Traniello, Steve Z, and Mike Sexton are all out.

1:30am... Jesus has left the building. He was just elimianted. Right now, it looks like that Layne "Sick Boy" Flack is still doing well. Lee Watkinson might be the chip leader with over $70K. Greg Raymer is down to about $35K. Liz Lieu is doing great. Dank Hank, Dan Heimiller, David Plastik, and Clonie Gowen is still alive. Europeans Joe Rafferty, Gus Hansen, John Gale, and Chris Bigler all have chips.

2:30am... We're down to 650 players. It is impossible to do chip counts and know who is left at this moment. I've been here since 9am... or 17.5 hours. I'm going to go home and write for anothe rhour or so before I have to get up at 8am to get ready to come back at 9am.

To see end of Day 1A chipcounts.... click here.

Good night and thanks for reading. See ya in a few hours.

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