Las Vegas, NV
The second and final flight of Day 2 includes all of the players who survived Day 1B and Day 1D. The players who can fade half of today's field will return to the Rio on Monday to play on Day 3 with the 1,200 players who survived Day 2A.
Yes, it's just another day in the killing fields. I hope you brought your boots, the Amazon Ballroom and Pavilion will be nasty with all that exploding donkey matter flying everywhere.
Quick Numbers for Day 2A
Entrants: 7,319Players will play four levels today. We're starting with 1 hour left in Level 5.
Players on Day 2A: 2,412
Day 2A Survivors: 1,200
Players on Day 2B: 2,734
Editor's Note: Due to the extreme length of the live blog, if you're reading this on the front page of Tao of Poker, then you have to click through READ MORE link below to read more.
Shuffle Up and Deal; Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em
I dunno about today's SUaD choice. Bruce Buffer is not as cool as his brother. It's like going to see Miles Davis and getting Sonny Davis on trumpet instead.
Emmit Smith was cool and unexpected. But Buffer? Come on, back in the day, the honor used to go to the legends of the game. I'd love to see some of the hall of famers and former WSOP champions get the nod instead of a non-poker celebrity.
And whatever happened to the musical acts performing the National Anthem? I kinda miss that, well, not really, but it gave me more snarky material to work with.
I'm bitter. I want Snoop or Nelly to kick things off. That's how you start a party. Snoopy adds excitement to anything. Just ask Martha Stewart.
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The Pavilion Report - Not a Freak Show?
I wandered over to the Pavilion. A few tables of note were within a small radius of each other -- Grant Hinkle, Kara Scott, and Phil Ivey.
Ivey's table had the most railbirds as per usual. I didn't have to look him up in the seat list, I simply followed the crowd and looked for the Humphries (aka Ivey's super fans). Ivey sported his favorite baby blue Full Tilt hat. I'm convinced that he tosses them away after each day or randomly leaves them where ever he goes after he plays. I know the folks at Full Tilt whose job is to specifically wait for Ivey with a Full Tilt hat and patch. To think, someone went to college to get a degree in something only to wake up one day and realize that their sole purpose in life is to wake up early and place a glorified sticker on an always tardy Phil Ivey.
Hinkle got it all in on the first hand, according to his twitter feed. He survived/chopped it up with A-K vs. A-K. His brother busted on Day 1D, so Grant is the only one of the Hinkle clan carrying the torch at the WSOP. His wife is still expecting their first child back in Kansas City.
The Devil looked uncomfortable at Table #16. I'm sure he was bummed out that he couldn't bribe one of the floor guys or cashiers into giving him a more suitable number.
Layne Flack had Karina Jett and one of the Team PokerStars German pros at his table. Flack was already yapping early into the session (sans any drinks -- he just seemed chipper) with railbirds. They were in their 50s or early 60s and Flack was asking them how long they were together and the secrets of a long lasting relationship. It was a semi-serious conversation and one of the more random things I heard in a while.
As one guy attempted to navigate the crowded rail with his wife, he uttered, Jesus, this is a freak show."
He's obviously never been to the parking lot of a Grateful Dead show.
Time to begin the Ivey Death Watch. He ran his queens into kings and is now short. Sick beat too. He thought he pulled off a serious suckout when he turned a set of queens, but his opponent spiked a King on the river to double up.
And just like that, Phil Ivey is no longer in the Main Event. His rail cleared out fast. Anyway, check out my recap of Ivey's bracelet win titled Ivey Beats Supercomputer.
The Recently Departed, Vol. 1
Recent Eliminations: Phil Ivey, Lucky Chewey, YellowSub, George "Tiny" Danzer, EPT London Champion Michael Martin, 2002 WSOP ME runner-up Julian Gardner, Tiltboy Perry Friedman, Thuy Doan, and Shannon Elizabeth.
Yep, those players failed to make the first break of the day.
@Jason's Aces Snapped Off
Jason Calacanis hit the rail on a sick sick beat. He got it all in with A-A against J-J. Jason faded a Jack, but his opponent caught a diamond four-flush to knock out the web entrepreneur.
By the way, Jason's recent venture is This Week In and los hobres at Wicked Chops Poker have a program on his network called This Week In Poker. Check it the episode that I appeared on with Jen Tilly.
Kara Scott = Awesome
Kara Scott found me on the rail and she called me over to sign a copy of Lost Vegas! I'm usually a whore for attention, especially from beautiful women, but I was kinda shy to sign it in front of her tablemates. When I left, she was kind enough to plug Lost Vegas for me to everyone within earshot.
This among the many reasons why we love Kara Scott.
Oh, and buy a copy of Lost Vegas here.
The Recently Departed, Vol. 2
Recent Eliminations: Jason Calacanis, Vivek Rajkumar, John Phan, Ryan Fair, Philip Hilm, Todd Brunson, David Baker, and that AboveBelow guy... or is it BelowAbove?
Thanks to Matt Waldron for cracking my back in the pressbox. Nice job, sir.
The Recently Departed, Vol. 3
Recent Eliminations: Sam Simon, Steve Z, Orel Hershieser, Andreas Hoivold, and Hevad Khan.
Break Time Musings
Texas Dolly and his scooter got caught in the hallway while the doors to the Amazon Ballroom were closed for the break. He was swarmed by autograph seekers and photo hounds. Happy Shulman passed by and shook the Godfather's hand. Brunson is shortstacked when he returns to play.
Gratuitous Kara Scott Picture
As we need an excuse to post pics of Kara Scott...
Kara has 65.5K.
And Grant Hinkle slipped to 76K.
When you see a wall of media in one corner of the room, you sprint over. It's just instinct. That's what happened in the Pavilion. I heard the ruckus and made a bee-line as fast as I could even with a creaky back.
"Check the tape! You have it on tape!" a player in Seat 4 yelled at Charlie the floor guy.
Prahalad Friedman and a player in Ted Bort were involved in a hand on the rail where a ton of spectators were hanging out. It was a battle of the blinds. Bort raised from the SB and Friedman called. The flop was J-6-5. According to a Belgium player at the table, Bort donk-bet and Friedman tank-called. A 9 fell on the turn, Bort donk-bet again and Friedman tank-called. The river was a brick. Bort shoved and Friedman tanked for five minutes. The floor was called and he as given one minute. As time ticked down, things heated up...
Parhald 'called' with one second to go. The floor killed his hand.
Depending on who you talk to, Prahald called when the floor was announcing 2 and 1. Or Prahlad called in between 1 and 0. David Singer sat at the table and mentioned that he heard Prahlad call. A few reporters I know swear that they heard him make the call. Even the crowd voiced their dissent. ESPN cameras were on the scene. The truth is in the tape. A second floor decision was asked for and the two floor guys conferred. The ruling stood.
This is not the first incident with Prahlad. Remember the "missing" ante thingy a few years back with Jeff Lisandro? Prahlad accused Lisandro of shorting the pot and fireworks ensued.
This time everyone had an opinion but Parhald just sat back in bewilderment as the dealer pushed the pot to Bort. That's when Bort barked. Twice.
Follow-up... Heard that Bort had two-pair on that hand. Prahlad was covered and said something to the effect that he was behind. Had the floor ruled his hand differently, Prahald would be out on the Main Event.
Snoopy talked to the floor guy who said that the hand gets killed at "1" and not "0".
BTW, thanks to Benjo and Mercdawg for assistance on this report.
Don't Stop Believing
The foreign press have a wry sense of humor. The mentioned Robert Iler (most known for his portrayal as AJ Soprano in The Sopranos) in their updates. They said something to the effect, "Since his show ended and he's out of work, he's been spending his spare time getting busted for controlled substances and playing lots of poker in underground clubs."
Buy the Book, See the Movie, But Buy the Book First
Here's the time of the day when I tell you that if you like what you have seen here, then you should buy my book Lost Vegas: The Redneck Riviera, Existentialist Conversations with Strippers, and the World Series of Poker.
Please support an independent writer and artist and buy 2 or 3. Lulu is the site that is selling my book and they offer up FREE shipping options (for US residents). For more info about my book, check out the Lost Vegas FAQs.
Recently Departed, Vol. 4
Recent Eliminations: Darvin Moon, Kirk Morrison, Melanie Weisner, Nichoel Peppe, Andy Bloch, Trishelle from the Real World, and Scott Montgomery.
Montgomery's new lady friend was seen sweating him a couple of times throughout the Main Event.
Recently Departed, Vol. 5
Recent Eliminations: Gavin Griffin, Shaniac, TMay420, Alex KGB, and Cyndy Violette.
I forgot about the Violette elimination. I was jotting it down when I heard the commotion at Prahlad's table. She had a daisy in a bottle of water. It was cute.
Some Have, Others Don't
Wandered around. Saw a few big stacks. Some dude named Gabe Wells has 420K. Archie Karas, Karina Jett, and Vanessa Selbst all have healthy stacks... for now.
Kara Scott was looking good at the break, but has to contend with Jesus at her table. Meanwhile Grant Hinkle took an awful beat when his Kings got ambushed by A-K sooted. He was down to next to nothing, but managed to triple up and stay alive for now...
Recently Departed, Vol. 6
Recent Eliminations: Grant Hinkle, Jason Potter, Ilya Gorodetskiy, JC Tran, George Lind, and Freddy Deeb.
Got to Grant Hinkle's table too late to see the hand, but he's out. My Main Man Freddy Deeb is busto too.
By the way, with Darvin Moon's departure, the only players still left from last year's November Nine are Joe Cada (advanced yesterday), Eric Buchman, and Happy Shulman.
Allen Cunningham is a super pro because he has a special addition to his chair which gives him amazing back support. As a writer using the same chairs for six weeks straight, it definitely puts a strain on your back that the cheesy Everest seat cushions cannot provide. Most of those seat cushions get tossed in a corner. A few fans hork them for personal use. Shit, why they don't use those extra cushions to fill the fucking hole in the Gulf of Mexico.
By the way, I think Cunningham is playing chess on his iPhone during lulls. Now there's one guy I would definitely not play chess for money.
The second highest finishing Frenchman at the 2009 Main Event just busted. Ludovic Lacay just hit the road.
By the way, players are on a dinner break until 8:45pm.
Recently Departed, Vol. 7
Recent Eliminations: Ludovic Lacay, John Duthie, Thomas Kremser, and Marco Traniello.
I knew that Doyle Brunson was on death watch as he returned from dinner break with a slim stack. He busted about thirty minutes after dinner ended. The Amazon Ballroom gave him a warm applause as he stood up and left his table under the scrutiny of ESPN's cameras. As he hobbled away, a couple of autograph and photo hounds were in hot pursuit of the legend.
Featured Tables Report: Silent Laak and Happy Happy Joy Joy
I was wandered over to the featured tables when I got distracted by Brunson's elimination. I finally hung out for a few hands on Phil Laak's table, which seemed rather quiet. Laak is usually bubbly for the cameras but he nothing was going on. It was like going to the zoo and checking out the lion cage but the loin is just sitting in the corner doing nothing. I want blood shed. Let's toss a few Christians to Laak and hopefully he'll devour them.
The featured TV table included Josh Arieh, Happy Shulman, and Action Dan Harrington. One of the fans I was standing behind kep arguing whether or not that was Harrington or someone who looked like him.
Random Rail Chatter - Saturday Night Version
Well, on Saturday nights the rail always takes on a extra sketchy and seedy vibe. Plus, more people are simply shitfaced. It's the weekend right? Anyway, here's my report...
- Railing the green section are two poker widows with laptops. They were smart and snagged chairs and busted out their laptops. One gal was on her Facebook page. The other was playing solitaire.
- "Yo, Pauly!" I heard and looked up. It was David 'Flip' Filippi, the older brother of Amnon. He's a stuntman/thespian and I know him from Atlantic City and back in NYC. He was one of the last players to buy into the event at the end of level 2 on Day 1D. Anyway, he's sitting on a 43.5K stack. Earlier in the day, he was entertaining his tablemates in the Pavilion about how he was the only kid he knew from his Hebrew school who got shot nine times. He even pulled up his shirt to expose his now-healed entry and exit wounds.
- "Wow, I though Darvin Moon was a Saints fan?" one yokel said in an Ozark drawl as he pointed at Shawn Rice, who was wearing a random black non-NFL hat.
- I almost got punched in the head, by accident of course, when a fiery animated Italian was explaining to his girlfriend and a random Italian media rep about the bad beat which sent him packing from the Main Event.
DonkeyBomber Almost Kong'd
Tom 'DonkeyBomber' Schneider is sitting at one of the tertiary tables and sporting one of his Loudmouth Golf blazers. This one has a black background with an entire deck of cards scattered about.
DonkeyBomber took a huge hit and is now under 20K. He even had Michalski on the rail sweating him. While I was there, we recorded an episode of Tao of Pokerati...
Episode 58: DonkeyBomber Death Watch - Short-stacked DonkeyBomber, wearing one of his extremely eye-catching Loudmouth blazers, is sitting at one of the tertiary tables. Dan is nearby keeping an eye on his good friend and one his Team Pokerati players. Pauly stops by to sweat DonkeyBomber with Dan as they hold a death watch for him.
Douchenozzle of the Day: Tim Bort
"Every time a douchebag poker player 'barks like a dog' at the WSOP, God drowns a sack full of puppies."
I wanted to tweet that, but decided against it because it's better fodder for Tao of Poker. Anyway, the player in question is Tim Bort. Maybe he's a nice guy, but barking like a dog after winning a pot is...well...douchey. No other way to call it, other then call it like it is.
Barking? What the fuck, what am I at the Westminster Dog show?
Barking at a poker table is utter moronic. So is screaming, "Yes!!!!!!!!" but at least that's an intelligible human language instead of a replication of an animal noise.
I hope that ESPN does NOT air him doing that repeatedly. Why? 1) It would validate his douchey behavior and 2) Americans are unoriginal copycats. If he gets away with that this year, then the 2011 WSOP will have incessant barking, which means there will be a rule in 2012... "No barking or other dog sounds at the tables."
While we're at it, can we also ban any sounds replicating cats, donkeys, elephants, and every primate species.
OK, last parting shot, and this one I actually posted on Twitter... The only time a human should bark, is when you pay a hooker to act like a dog before she pisses on you.
Recently Departed, Vol. 8
Recent Eliminations: Jesus, Doyle, Micon, DonkeyBomber, Happy Shulman, Josh Arieh, Layne Flack, Yolon Schwartz, Ryan D'Angelo, and Melissa Hayden.
Day 2B Complete
We have no clue how many players are left, but stay tuned to find out. I will post that info here when it comes available.
Visit WSOP.com for end of Day 2B chipcounts.
Tomorrow is a DAY OFF and the media tournament.
Action resumes on Monday for Day 3 of the Main Event. That will be the first time that the entire field will be under the same roof (bot not necessarily the same room -- Pavilion will be used on Monday).