Scott Blumstein started Day 9 action at the 2017 World Series of Poker Main Event final table with nearly half of the chips in play. In just over four hours of play he managed to increase his overall lead and now just has two opponents standing between himself and the world championship.
While most assumed that the number of short stacks in play would lead to a quick bust outs, early play was dominated by double ups. Antoine Saout and John Hesp both doubled before the first elimination of the night.
Damian Salas Dwindles and Busts
Damian Salas’ hopes at becoming the first Argentinean Main Event champ were dashed early. Salas continued to fold hand-after-hand for two straight hours before finally having to get his chips in. Dan Ott raised to 3,400,000 and action folded to Salas in the big blind. Salas called and the flop came , Salas checked and Ott bet enough to put Salas all in. Salas called and tabled for top pair while Ott showed . The turn was the , keeping Salas ahead, but the river was the giving Ott a wheel and sending Salas to the floor in despair. His fifth place finish earned him $1,425,000.
Antoine Saout Doubles Up Again
Antoine Saout had fallen to the second shortest stack behind only John Hesp. Action folded to Blumstein on the button and he raised to 3,400,000 before Saout moved all in from the small blind for 23,900,000. Blumstein snap-called and flipped over and Saout showed . The board ran out to give Saout a double-up to 50,400,000 – good enough for the second biggest stack at the time.
Bryan Piccioli Runs Into Kings, Finishes Sixth
After action folded to him in the small blind, Bryan Piccioli looked down at and moved all in for 14,950,000 only to have Ott call from the big blind with . The flop was no help for Piccioli and after the turn and river he was eliminated in sixth place.
Antoine Saout Goes Homes in Fifth
Despite his earlier double up, Saout was unable to avoid the locomotive that was Blumstein. Saout called Blumstein’s button raise to 4,200,000. The flop was followed by checks from both players. The turn got Saout to check, but Blumstein fired 5,600,000 and Saout called. The river was the , Saout checked again, Blumstein went all in. Saout thought for about a minute before calling and showing but Blumstein turned over for a turned straight, sending Saout home in fifth place.
After that hand Blumstein had 217,450,000 of the 360,675,000 chips in play.
The Run of John Hesp Finally Ends
Over the course of the live coverage on ESPN and PokerGO, fans around the world came to adore 64-year-old John Hesp. That love affair ended on the last hand of Friday’s action though. Down to just 11,950,000, Hesp moved all in from the cutoff before Benjamin Pollak moved all in over the top from the small blind. Hesp tabled while Pollak was ahead with . The flop kept Pollak in front and when the turn and river came and he stayed there, sending Hesp home in fourth place and wrapping up play for the night.
The final three players, Blumstein, Ott and Pollak, will return to action Saturday night at 5:30 pm PT and will play down to a winner. Action begins airing on ESPN at 6 pm PT.
- Scott Blumstein – 226,450,000
- Dan Ott – 88,375,000
- Benjamin Pollak – 45,850,000