WSOP: Bryan Campanello Bags Main Event Day 1A Chip Lead

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Bryan Campanello dominated Day 1A of the 2019 WSOP Main Event. (WPT photo).

In the eight years since the World Series of Poker Main Event went to a three-starting flight schedule, only once has the Day 1A field reach 1,000 or more players and that was 2012 when they snuck into four-digit territory with 1,066 players. There was no sneaking in on Wednesday. 1,336 players showed up to play Day 1A, giving WSOP officials hope that this year’s event might be a record-breaker.

Bryan Campanello Amasses Massive Stack on Day 1A

There is still a very long way to go, but Bryan Campanello is off to a dream start. Campanello turned his starting stack of 60,000 into 417,500 at the end of the night. No other player surpassed 300,000. Campanello, who has one WSOP bracelet and three WSOP Circuit rings, has never cashed the WSOP Main Event before.

Timothy Su finished with a second-best stack of 297,300. He’s followed by Quentin Roussey with 266,400.

All’s Fair in Love and Poker: Igor Kurganov Busts Liv Boeree

The old saying tells you that the worst day of the year for a poker player is the day you bust the Main Event. That might not be true for Igor Kurganov. The Team PokerStars pro finished the day with 129,100, but a chunk of those chips came from eliminating his longtime girlfriend Liv Boeree from the tournament.

Former #1s Don’t Fare So Well

No former #1-ranked PocketFiver has ever won the WSOP Main Event, though a few have come close. Wednesday wasn’t a great day for a trio of players who have held the crown. Bryan Piccioli, Chris Moorman, and Steven van Zadelhoff all failed to make it through the day with chips. Swedish superstar ‘lena900‘ however, did bag up 129,300 to advance to Day 2.

David Williams Films His Own Ugly Demise

Flopping the nut straight and getting all the money in against top set is an uneasy feeling. David Williams did exactly that early on Day 1A and that uneasy feeling turned into a queasy one on turn. Williams was filming the hand on his smartphone when it got ugly.

Williams wasn’t the only notable to suffer an early end to his Main Event. Shane Warne, Frank Kassela, Bryn Kenney, Mohsin Charania, Brandon Shack-Harris, and Kristen Bicknell all ended with a zero as their Day 1A chip count.

Former Main Event Champs Advance

Just two former Main Event winners managed to work their way through the five levels of play on Day 1A. Chris Moneymaker, fresh off of his ninth-place finish in the partypoker MILLIONS Las Vegas, ended the day 95,000 while 2016 Main Event winner Qui Nguyen had a much better day, finishing with 180,500.

Foxen, Strelitz, Bonomo Highlight Notables Moving on to Day 2A

There were 960 players who made it through Day 1A. While a number of top players like to wait until Day 1C to play, there were a plethora of poker superstars who played on Wednesday and finished with chips in a bag.

Daniel Strelitz, still basking in the flow of winning his first bracelet, finished with 185,300. Poker vlogger Johnnie Moreno (aka Johnnie Vibes) tripled his starting stack and finished with 184,000. Alex Foxen nearly did the same, ending with 173,200. Justin Bonomo accumulated 96,000 through the day to move on to Day 2.

Other notables advancing from Day 1A include Patrick Serda (216,700), Jeff Lisandro (180,100), Jack Sinclair (153,800), Isaac Baron (146,600), Kelly Minkin (137,100), Billy Baxter (131,500), Brian Hastings (124,200), Matt Glantz (120,800), Arlie Shaban (113,600), Brian Rast (109,100), Kevin MacPhee (82,500), Garrett Greer (69,300), Ben Yu (63,600), Mike Gorodinsky (57,800), Erik Seidel (57,400), Stephen Chidwick (45,000), Marvin Rettenmaier (30,800), and Poker Hall of Fame finalist Chris Bjorin (18,000).

Rapper Hoodie Allen Goes to Work, Bags Big

Rapper Hoodie Allen, real name Steven Markowitz, was a Happy Camper at the end of Day 1A. The 31-year-old University of Pennsylvania grad lived up to The Hype and finished with 151,500, good enough for a top 100 stack. Markowitz will hope People Keep Talking when he returns for Day 2AB on Sunday. He has one previous WSOP cash, a 35th place finish in a 2016 $1,000 No Limit Hold’em event.

Michael Miller Leads Pennsylvania Contingent into Day 2A

With the launch of Pennsylvania Online Poker looming, 17 players from the Keystone State managed to turn Day 1A into a trip to Day 2A. Leading the way is Michael Miller. The Haverford, PA native just missed out on having a top 10 stack after finishing with 235,800. The next biggest Pennsylvania stack belongs to Gregory Fishberg with 168,800.

They’re joined by Jesse Smith (136,600), Alan Schein (135,000), Brian Hastings (124,200), Matt Glantz (120,800), Alexander Krisak (117,000), John Andress (104,900), Joseph Palma (100,100), Sean Magee (88,500), Dennis Cronin (85,700), David Knudsen (76,600), James Hundt (72,900), Jennifer Shahade (72,400), Ronald Lankin (49,500), Gary Bowker (25,800), and Seth Berger (DNR).

The Day 1A Numbers Could Be Hinting at Something Big

Historicially, Day 1A is always the least popular Main Event starting flight. It requires being in Las Vegas the longest amount of time, there’s a two-day gap between Day 1A and Day 2A, and it means being in Sin City on July 4th. Over the last five years, Day 1A has accounted for an average of 11.44% of the overall field size, staying steady with a high of 11.75% last summer and a low of 11.01% in 2017. If that trend were to hold true this year, WSOP officials are looking at a record-setting year that will eclipse the 8,773 runners that turned out in 2006.

Top 10 Chip Counts

  1. Bryan Campanello – 417,500
  2. Timothy Su – 297,300
  3. Quentin Roussey – 266,400
  4. Takehiro Kato – 259,200
  5. Charidimos Demetriou – 252,000
  6. Craig Chait – 249,600
  7. Stephen Graner – 247,100
  8. Mark Zullo – 245,600
  9. David Lolis – 245,100
  10. Thomas Roupe – 238,800