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After a stunning final table performance, Dan Cates won the $50,000 Poker Players Championship to get his name on the Chip Reese Trophy. Elsewhere, Josh Arieh won his fourth bracelet and Georgios Sotiropoulos took his third on Day 37 of the 2021 World Series as Day 1b of the World Series of Poker Main Event also took place on a day of drama. Dan Cates Wins First-Ever Bracelet in $50K Poker Players Championship It was a packed day of action in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, as Dan Cates rose through the ranks to win his first-ever WSOP bracelet for over $954,000. As ridiculous as it sounds, the money will hardly matter to one of the most unique poker players the game has ever produced. The first player to bust the final table in fifth place was Chris Brewer, who went in No-Limit Hold’em when he called all-in with [poker card="7s"][poker card="7c"] on a flop of [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="5h"]. Brewer had currently established that the aggressor in the hand, Ryan Leng, hadn’t hit the flop, but Leng’s [poker card="Js"][poker card="Jc"] were good enough to eliminate Brewer for $211,235 after a turn of [poker card="2c"] and the [poker card="6d"] river. An extended period of play saw no-one bust for hours, overnight chip leader Eli Elezra was gone. Elezra lost a Razz pot to Paul Volpe to cash for $286,983, some way short of the top prize he was favorite to win a few hours earlier. Three-handed play lasted some time before Dan Cates offered to buy everyone on the rail some drinks to get more support to push him over the line. No, really... everyone. https://twitter.com/junglemandan/status/1456799668390662149 Spurred on, Cates then took out Paul Volpe in third place for $404,243 as Volpe lost in Limit Hold’em with [poker card="Kd"][poker card="2s"] of Cates winning against Volpe’s [poker card="Ks"][poker card="6h"] on a board of [poker card="Qs"][poker card="Tc"][poker card="2h"][poker card="2c"][poker card="7s"] when all the money went in on the flop. Heads-up play began with Cates in complete control, holding 16 million chips to Leng’s 2.9 million. After early pressure from Leng, however, he chipped up and got a full double when top pair was good enough to take a vital Limit Hold’em pot as Leng vaulted to 9 million chips, almost drawing level. https://twitter.com/junglemandan/status/1456954623122567168?s=20 That quickly went in the other direction, however, as Cates grew his lead and sealed the deal in a round of Limit Hold’em as his [poker card="Qc"][poker card="3d"] won after being all-in behind on the flop of [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Jh"][poker card="Th"] against Leng’s [poker card="Td"][poker card="5s"]. The [poker card="Qh"] turn put Cates into the lead and Jungleman was swinging from the vines when the [poker card="3s"] gave him the title, $954,020 top prize and first-ever bracelet, with Leng’s runner-up result (his second of the series in addition to winning a bracelet) worth $589,628. "I said I was gonna win, so I won. But it was pretty important because now I have more money to help the world and to continue a career outside of poker," Cates said after his victory. https://twitter.com/junglemandan/status/1456955161566273544?s=20 WSOP 2021 Event #60 $50,000 Poker Players Championship Final Table Results: Dan Cates - $954,020 Ryan Leng - $589,628 Paul Volpe - $404,243 Eli Elezra - $286,983 Chris Brewer - $211,235 Arieh Captures Fourth Bracelet, Second in a Fortnight To say that Josh Arieh has enjoyed a purple patch at the felt is a little like saying the Rio is slightly cold. The popular professional won his third WSOP bracelet just two weeks ago, but after a stirring run to the line Event #66, Arieh captured his fourth-lifetime WSOP bracelet and second this Series to vault up the Player of the Year leaderboard and further strengthen his incredible 2021 and general poker legacy. The professional, who has played the game for quarter of a century, took down a dramatic final table as he ruled the PLO Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship for a massive score of $484,791. The final table saw players such as British mixed game specialist Adam Owen and Jeff Gross bust before the final four, with Dan Colpoys’ elimination followed by the end of Russian player Anatolii Zyrin’s chances. With overnight leader Danny Chang to conquer heads-up, Arieh controlled the short but exciting battle as he put an almost 3:1 chips lead to perfect use. While Chang cashed for $299,627, it was Arieh who sealed yet more memories in a 2021 World Series of Poker fast becoming known for his deep runs in some of the toughest events on the poker calendar. Did someone say WSOP Player of the Year? The race for the ‘flag’ everyone wants to see hanging in the WSOP venue is up for grabs now. https://twitter.com/RemkoRinkema/status/1456880193335746564 WSOP 2021 Event #66 $10,000 PLO8 Championship Final Table Results: Josh Arieh - $484,791 Danny Chang - $299,627 Anatolii Zyrin - $207,369 Dan Colpoys - $146,817 Jeff Gross - $106,391 Adam Owen - $78,955 Aaron Kupin - $60,040 Matt Woodward - $46,813 [caption id="attachment_637053" align="aligncenter" width="1000"] Josh Arieh won his fourth WSOP bracelet on a huge day at the felt on Day 37 of the 2011 WSOP[/caption] Sotiropoulos Seals Third Bracelet Win Georgios Sotiropoulos won the Mini Main Event after outlasting his final four opponents and putting another dominant chip lead to great use to win his third WSOP bracelet. Sotiropoulos closed it out in style, winning heads-up against Japanese player Wataru Miyashita, who grabbed the $267,328 runner-up prize after running over the final table and eliminated the other three players in his bid to stop the Greek star. That didn’t happen, however, as Sotiropoulos - who started heads-up level with Miyashita - remerged as the dominant force and closed it out to win his third bracelet across a stellar poker career and the top prize of $432,575. WSOP 2021 Event #65 $1,000 Mini Main Event Final Table Results: Georgios Sotiropoulos - $432,575 Wataru Miyashita - $267,328 Jordan Meltzer - $202,695 James Patterson - $154,720 James Rubinski - $118,898 Matthew Jewett - $91,991 David Tuthill - $71,661 James Morgan - $56,208 Erkut Yilmaz - $44,394 On Day 1b of the WSOP Main Event, 845 players took to the felt in pursuit of the biggest prize in poker. With just 611 players surviving, Steve Foutty bagged up the biggest stack of the day with 287,000 chips, followed in the counts by Matthew Traylor (279,500) and Maxime Canevet (277,000). Other big names to make it included Ronnie Bardah (139,600), Stephen Chidwick (124,900), four-time bracelet winner Kevin Gerhart (112,400) and Mike Matusow (56,500), while others such as WSOP Main Event back-to-back 1987 and 1988 winner Johnny Chan, John Racener, Brian Rast, Nick Schulman and Shaun Deeb all fell on the first day. WSOP 2021 Event #67 $10,000 Main Event Day 1b Main Event Top 10 Chipcounts: Steve Foutty - 287,000 Matthew Traylor - 279,500 Maxime Canevet - 277,000 Justin Garcia - 243,500 Kayvon Shahbaz - 238,500 Keegan Westover - 230,700 Kevin Rasor - 228,900 Aaron Earthman - 226,800 Jonathan Williams - 225,100 Jean Guillette Canada - 223,200 With the WSOP Main Event under way, popular British player Patrick Leonard speculated on exactly which player types you’ll meet if you’re playing the legendary tournament. https://twitter.com/padspoker/status/1456834567441162240 Finally, it wouldn’t be a World Series of Poker day if Phil Hellmuth wasn’t providing a window into the crazy life he leads as he mingles with the stars! https://twitter.com/phil_hellmuth/status/1456805414918508544
A dramatic day at the felt saw Kevin Gerhart claim his fourth WSOP bracelet with his second of this World Series in Event #62, the $1,500-entry Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better. Elsewhere, the Poker Players Championship reached its final five players as Eli Elezra grabbed the chip lead heading into the final day and there were bracelet wins for both Eelis Parssinen and Cole Ferraro. Kevin Gerhart Wins Second Bracelet of the Series It was all about Kevin Gerhart in Event #62 as the popular young pro won his second bracelet of the 2021 WSOP and the fourth of his career. Heading into the final table, the chips were remarkably even, with Gerhart marginally ahead of both Matthew Kaplan and Sterling Lopez at the top of the eight-man leaderboard. The first player to bust at the official final table was Dylan Wilkerson as Kaplan, who led the field coming into the final day, vaulted back into the lead when his full house sent Wilkerson out for $18,278 in eighth place. It took no time at all for the next player to leave the action, as Michael Trivett was shot down by Gerhart almost immediately for a score of $23,891 in seventh place. That hand gave Gerhart the lead back and he further strengthened his advantage of the rest of the field when he eliminated Roman Hrabec in sixth place for $31,733 when Gerhart won his second bust-out pot in a row with two-pair. At that stage, Gerhart’s closest rival was hard to pick, with each of the other four men each sitting on roughly 60% of Gerhart’s stack, but Dustin Dirksen stepped forward as the likeliest heads-up opponent after busting Alexandr Orlov in fourth for $42,823. Orlov’s exit was enough to propel Dirksen off the bottom of the counts, but he had slipped slightly by the time he risked it all to double through Gerhart. Once Dicksen doubled, the pressure ramped up on the other remaining players, and Lopez busted in fourth place for $58,695 as a result. Lopez was followed from the felt by Kaplan, as both of Gerhart’s earlier rivals moved to the rail, Kaplan cashing for $81,696. Gerhart took on Dicksen and had a strong lead going into the heads-up battle, with 12.1 million chips playing Dicksen’s 6 million. Although Dicksen took the lead after some early pots, Gerhart grabbed a marginal advantage back by the time the final hand happened and virtually all of the chips were in the middle of the table. Gerhart’s pair of kings was good enough against Dicksen’s jacks, which saw Gerhart’s rail celebrated a fourth WSOP bracelet title, the luckless Dicksen was commiserated in second by the runner-up prize of $115,440. Gerhart had prevented him winning a first-ever bracelet with the hand and took the top prize of $186,789 in the process. WSOP 2021 Event #62 $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Final Table Results: Kevin Gerhart - $186,789 Dustin Dirksen - $115,440 Matthew Kaplan - $81,696 Sterling Lopez - $58,695 Alexandr Orlov - $42,823 Roman Hrabec - $31,733 Michael Trivett - $23,891 Dylan Wilkerson - $18,278 Elezra Takes The Lead In $50K PPC After an entertaining day where 10 players dropped to five, Eli Elezra finished the action top of the leaderboard with one day to go in the Poker Players Championship. The $50,000-entry event, which will conclude on Friday, November 5th after a day’s break, began the day with ten top players, all of whom had made it into the money. Mike Wattel was the first player to be busted, exiting proceedings in 10th place for a min-cash worth $82,623 when he lost out to Paul Volpe and it wasn’t long before Daniel Negreanu busted too, leaving in ninth place for $91,595. ‘Kid Poker’ lost with pocket aces again after doing so on a dramatic Day 3, this time being shot down by Ryan Leng’s set of jacks. With eight players left, Nick Schulman, who earlier in the day had spoken out against a perceived slowroll from Negreanu, who later tweeted about how he was happy the hand played out as it did. https://twitter.com/RealKidPoker/status/1456021223859650562 Schulman’s exit for $106,120 in eighth took place against Chris Brewer, who seemed to grow in power throughout the day, while Matt Glantz, who busted in seventh for $128,256, may have gone out in a split pot by Leng and Elezra, but he was trolled by Dan ‘Jungleman’ Cates on his way from the event. https://twitter.com/junglemandan/status/1456034289796141064 That left just one man to leave the party and miss out on the final five. Unfortunately for him and his many fans and investors, that was Josh Arieh, who left in sixth place another great score of $161,422 when his pocket queens in PLO were toppled by Elezra’s two-pair tens and sixes on the turn. With five men remaining, here are the payouts for the players who made it all the way to Day 4 of one of the most difficult tournaments this year’s WSOP will host. WSOP 2021 Event #60 $50,000 Poker Players Championship Results: 6th - Josh Arieh - $161,422 7th - Matt Glantz - $128,256 8th - Nick Schulman - $106,120 9th - Daniel Negreanu - $91,595 10th - Mike Wattel - $82,623 Of the five remaining players, it is Elezra who has the chip lead going into Friday’s showdown for the gold. With a massive 10 WSOP bracelets already won by the five players who will compete to get their name on the Chip Reese Trophy, Elezra’s four is one ahead of Volpe and Leng, each of whom has three to their name. Neither Cates nor Brewer have won WSOP gold so far in their careers but now sit just four opponents away from doing so. WSOP 2021 Event #60 $50,000 Poker Players Championship Final Table Chipcounts: Eli Elezra - 4,620,000 Paul Volpe - 4,360,000 Chris Brewer - 4,325,000 Daniel Cates - 3,875,000 Ryan Leng - 1,625,000 Ferraro Digs Deep To Win Deepstack Championship In Event #61, Cole Ferraro completed a massive comeback win to claim his first WSOP title and the top prize of over a quarter of a million dollars. Eclipsing the others at a dramatic final table, Ferraro’s victory came after the 22-year-old finished second in an event earlier this series. Heading into the final table, Ferraro had a slight chip lead, but that was overtaken by Richard Dixon very quickly as he took out Ronald Slucker in ninth for $25,359. Slucker shoved on a flop of [poker card="6s"][poker card="5d"][poker card="4h"] with [poker card="5s"][poker card="5c"] for a flopped middle set. Dixon made the call with his overpair [poker card="7s"][poker card="7h"], but that improved to a straight on 5th street as the [poker card="As"] turn was followed by a [poker card="8d"] on the river. There was a period of no eliminations, but as the blinds rose, that was followed by a number of quick bust-outs. Rubin Chappell left in eighth place for $32,169 when his pocket eights were topped by Bart Lybaert’s pocket queens, before Xiangdong Huang busted in seventh for $41,108 when his [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8s"] couldn’t win a flip against Dixon’s [poker card="6h"][poker card="6d"]. With six players remaining, Edgardo Rosario busted for $52,914 when he got unlucky post-flop having had the better of it before the community cards fell. Rosario’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Qc"] was well ahead of Dixon’s [poker card="Ad"][poker card="6d"] but the board of [poker card="7c"][poker card="6c"][poker card="2c"][poker card="4d"][poker card="6s"] managed to offer Rosario a flush draw from the flop yet instead give Dixon trips on the river. It wasn’t long, however, before Dixon himself was on the rail, busting in fifth place for $68,604. All-in with [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Qh"] on a queen-high flop Ferraro had found [poker card="Kd"][poker card="Kc"] and held through turn and river to win with a set of kings and sneak up on Sami Rustom, who had taken the chip lead. Out in fourth for $89,587 was Bart Lybaert, the Belgian player heading home after he thought he was bluff-catching with third pair on a king-high board but saw Ferraro turn over aces in the hole to go into three-handed play with a strong lead. Play was soon heads-up, as Sean Dunleavy was done and left in third place for $117,822. Dunleavy shoved on the river of a hand against Rustom with a set of jacks, but his opponent had rivered a runner-runner flush to take the lead right back. With Rustom holding 70 million chips to Ferraro’s 47 million, it took a comeback win for the bracelet. Ferraro won a handful of important hands where he had to make tough calls before the final hand saw him taking a lead into the action at the crucial moment. Rustom shoved with [poker card="4h"][poker card="4s"], and after a long time taking consideration of all factors, Ferarro called with [poker card="Td"][poker card="Tc"]. After the board played out [poker card="9s"][poker card="5h"][poker card="2s"][poker card="5c"][poker card="Th"], Ferraro had the win and a history-making first-ever bracelet, with the 22-year-old the youngest player to enjoy a first and second so far in the 2021 World Series of Poker. While Rustom won $156,056 for finishing as runner-up, Ferraro’s top prize of $252,491will see him in huge profit for the series and playing the Main Event later in the week. On this form, who would want to face him across the felt? WSOP 2021 Event #61 $600 Deepstack Championship Final Table Results: Cole Ferraro - $252,491 Sami Rustom - $156,056 Sean Dunleavy - $117,822 Bart Lybaert - $89,587 Richard Dixon - $68,604 Edgardo Rosario - $52,914 Xiangdong Huang - $41,108 Ruben Chappell - $32,169 Ronald Slucker - $25,359 Eelis Parssinen Wins First WSOP Bracelet Event #64 saw Finnish online crusher Eelis Parssinen claim a first-ever WSOP bracelet victory as he took the top prize at a final table including players such as Niklas Astedt and Joni Jouhkimainen. With just eight players making the final table, it wasn’t long before the first player busted, with a fast structure to the $5,000-entry event throughout. Parssinen got off to the best possible start when he made quads in a PLO pot to double through Jouhkimainen and move up the ranks, and instead of the Finn floundering, he would continue to rise up the leaderboard during the remainder of the final day. Vikranth Anga was the first player to leave the final table as he lost out with ace-king to Jouhkimainen’s pocket kings when all the chips went into the middle pre-flop. Anga’s exit was worth $53,824 and he was soon joined on the rail by Swedish online sensation Niklas Astedt in seventh place for $70,367 when his [poker card="Qs"][poker card="5s"] couldn’t catch Noah Bronstein’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="6h"], a board of [poker card="As"][poker card="3h"][poker card="2d"][poker card="9d"][poker card="7h"] sending Astedt home. After Kyle Arora went out in sixth for $93,425, Jouhkimainen busted in fifth for $125,940. The Finn called off his stack from the big blind with [poker card="9d"][poker card="7s"] only for Ezra Abu Gazal’s [poker card="As"][poker card="Qs"] to eliminate his micro stack. Soon, only three remained after the overnight chip leader, David Prociak, busted for $172,332. Gazal would bust in No Limit Hold’em, when his [poker card="Qd"][poker card="Tc"] lost to Parssinen’s [poker card="5c"][poker card="5d"] on a nine-high board, with the American earning $239,231 for the run to the podium places. That gave Parssinen 20.6 million chips, almost three times as many as Bronstein who had 8.4 million. Heads-up was a short affair as the Finn wrapped up victory with a flopped set of sixes good enough for Parssinen to claim gold and the top prize of $545,616, while Bronstein cashed for $337,216 as runner-up. WSOP 2021 Event #64 $5,000 NLHE/PLO Mix Final Table Results: Eelis Parssinen - $545,616 Noah Bronstein - $337,216 Ezra Abu Gazal - $239,321 David Prociak - $172,332 Joni Jouhkimainen - $125,940 Kyle Arora - $93,425 Niklas Astedt - $70,367 Vikranth Anga - $53,824 In Event #63, the $500-entry Salute to Warriors, just nine players remain from 169 combatants on the penultimate day of the event. Bradley Rogoff leads the final table with 8,800,000 chips, a fair distance ahead of Eric Zhang with 7,175,000. Elsewhere at the final table, there were stacks in bags for Chris Corbo (4,475,000) and Chulhan Choi (3,900,000) among others, but some weren’t so fortunate as to make the final day, with stars of the game such as Taylor Pollard, Lisa Roberts and Chris Bibb all going close to the final day but eventually missing out. WSOP 2021 Event #63 $500 Salute to Warriors Final Table Chipcounts: Bradley Rogoff - 8,800,000 Eric Zhang - 7,175,000 Guy Hadas - 5,500,000 Christopher Corbo - 4,475,000 Mitch Garshofsky - 4,475,000 Chulhan Choi - 3,900,000 Hlib Kovtunov - 3,475,000 Anthony Mccurdy - 3,350,000 Marty Zabib - 2,700,000 The kick-off of Event #65, the Mini Main Event, is something thousands of players were looking forward to, as evidenced by the 3,821 players who played the freezeout tournament that apes the structure and style of the WSOP Main Event, which kicks off on Thursday. After starting at 11am, the tournament enjoyed a busy opening day, with players such as the Player of the Year favorite Shaun Deeb busting out before the day was through. Others such as WSOP world champion Joe McKeehen went the same way, but some survived, with Thomas Boyden the pick of the 282 who made the cut. Others to feature in the top ten included Farid Jattin (2,240,000) and two-time WSOP winner Georgios Sotiropoulos (2,135,000), while the highest other former WSOP bracelet winner in the counts was Ismael Bojang (1,850,000). WSOP 2021 Event #65 $1,000 Mini Main Event Top 10 Chipcounts: Thomas Boyden - 3,325,000 Giorgii Skhulukhiia - 3,150,000 Nicholas Verderamo - 2,560,000 Farid Jattin - 2,240,000 Jinkwang Do - 2,150,000 Georgios Sotiropoulos - 2,135,000 Gareth Devereux - 1,995,000 John Longowa - 1,995,000 Nana Sanechika - 1,955,000 Ye Yuan - 1,925,000 Finally, in terms of poker events that is, the $10,000 PLO Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship kicked off and saw 194 players reduced to just 101 on Day 1 of the event. Brian Hastings (447,000) leads the field, but he is in illustrious company in a top 10 that includes Chip Jett (308,500), Nick Schulman (295,000), GGPoker ambassador Felipe Ramos (282,500) and two-time 2021 WSOP winner Ari Engel, the Canadian sitting on 224,000 chips. Players to bust included Yueqi Zhu, David Benyamine, Bradley Ruben, Rep Porter, Chris Vitch, Robert Campbell, Randy Ohel, Daniel Zack and Joao Vieira. WSOP 2021 Event #66 $10,000 PLO Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship Top 10 Chipcounts: Brian Hastings - 447,000 Tommy Chen - 377,500 Chip Jett - 308,500 Nick Schulman - 295,000 Matt Livingston - 289,000 Felipe Ramos - 282,500 Ward Crane - 240,000 Esther Taylor-Brady - 240,000 Ari Engel - 224,000 Dan Colpoys - 223,000 Despite positive actions, not everybody’s WSOP is going to plan. Ronnie Bardah’s luck isn’t changing any time soon by the looks of it. https://twitter.com/RonnieBardah/status/1456041676414148609 Finally, is there a Player of the Year curse to legends of the past? Current combatant Ari Engel thinks so! https://twitter.com/AriEngelPoker/status/1456033927311802370
This week the World Series of Poker Main Event, in all its glory, returns to the Rio for what is strongly rumored to be the very last time. Thousands of players - both pros and recs - will pony up the $10,000 buy-in in hopes that after more than two weeks, it will be they who will stand alone, earning life-changing prize money and be crowned the new World Champion. The Main Event is one of the most unique tournaments in all of poker. The payday alone is enough to bring out the masses. But when you add the prestige and tradition of the Main Event bracelet, just playing in the event has become part of the poker dream. And if we’ve learned anything over the 16 years that the Main Event has taken place at the Rio it’s that the spotlight of the Main Event is likely to feature players the greater poker world does not yet know. Perhaps it will be a young up-and-coming grinder who will take center stage or perhaps a recreational enthusiast who was bought in by their family looking to take their once-in-a-lifetime shot. This tournament has proved it’s impossible to predict what will happen and who will emerge, that’s what makes it special. That’s also why picking players who will go on deep run in the Main Event is equally impossible to predict. But that’s exactly what we’re going to do. Whether you are drafting a team with some friends, playing a little fantasy poker, or getting a little side hustle down on PokerShares you’re going to want to check out this list and consider adding them to your squad. We’re taking into account recent momentum, proven ability to navigate large-field tournaments, and the last half-decade of Main Event results. We’re also looking to see who’s already turned up at the WSOP this year and who may just sit out until 2022. So, enjoy. Here’s a special super-sized, special edition of First-Round Picks for the 2021 World Series of Poker Main Event. #1. Niklas Astedt Main Event Cashes: 2 Main Event Earnings: $59,420 The former longtime #1-ranked Niklas ‘Lena900’ Astedt is in Las Vegas and ready to make a run at the Main Event. Generally considered one of, if not the, greatest online poker player of all time, when this large-field tournament destroyer is in the field it makes him simply unable to pass up. The truth about Astedt is that he doesn’t have a lot of history with the WSOP, just seven total live cashes at the Las Vegas series. However, two of those came in the Main Event (2016, 2019) and he just made the money in the $10K Six-Max this year. Don’t be surprised if when the field narrows, Astedt is in the mix. #2. Paul Volpe Main Event Cashes: 5 Main Event Earnings: $635,129 Three-time WSOP bracelet winner Paul Volpe is no stranger to making deep runs in the Main Event. He has five Main Event cashes in the past 10 years including finishing in 192nd in 2011 ($47,107), 142nd in 2018 ($57,010), and 29th in 2016 for $216,211. His deepest Main Event run was back in 2012 when he finished in 20th place for $294,601. The fact is that in the Main Event (or any tournament, really) Volpe is as good a bet as there is. #3 Yuri Dzivielevski Main Event Cashes: 2 Main Event Earnings: $317,079 The current #1-ranked online player in the world, Yuri Dzivielevski, has been grinding the entire 2021 WSOP and has racked up six cashes to date. However, that’s just momentum headed into the Main Event where Dzivielevski is a proven large-field master. In 2019, he was one of the standout stars of the Main Event and, after being featured on the ESPN broadcast at the same table as Daniel Negreanu, he went on to finish in 28th place for $261,430. Read: Yuri Dzivielevski Enjoying Success, Freedom With Nothing Left To Prove #4. Alexandre Reard Main Event Cashes: 3 Main Event Earnings: $428,978 France’s Alexandre Reard is already having an outstanding 2021 WSOP, having won his first gold bracelet in Event #47 ($5,000 Freezeout) for $428,694. But the reason he’s such a high pick is his long history of crushing in the Main Event. In 2017, he finished in 16th for $340,000, and in 2018 he had another top 100 finish, ending in 92nd for $66,330. Having cashed in the Main in three of the last four years, Reard already knew what it took to make it deep and now he knows how to close out a bracelet event. #5. Andrew Moreno Main Event Cashes: 2 Main Event Earnings: $256,476 Andrew Moreno, the younger brother of "high-quality" poker vlogger Johnny ‘Vibes’ Moreno, is coming off an epic career score. He took down the $10,000 buy-in Wynn Millions in June for $1.46 million dollars and that was just two weeks after he closed out the $1,100 Ultimate Stack at the Venetian for $127K. Moreno has been seen in the WSOP payout lines, making the money in a number of 2021 events, and has a history of going deep in the Main Event, finishing in 28th in 2015 for more than $211,000. It seems the one-time cash game pro thrives when the stakes are at their biggest, making the Main Event a perfect situation for him. Also, Johnny’s not a bad choice either. #6. Daniel Lazrus Main Event Cashes: - Main Event Earnings: - Long Beach, New Jersey’s 31-year old Daniel Lazrus is entering the Main Event with a wave of momentum at his back. In July, he won the first bracelet of his career in the WSOP.com NLHE High Roller Championship for $205,347. Then he made his way to Las Vegas where he earned his second by taking down the massive 2021 Millionaire Maker for an even $1 million score. This would be the perfect time for Lazrus, who was leading the NLHE Player of the Year standings for a good portion of the first half of the series, to break out for his first (and possibly deep) Main Event cash. #7. Joao Vieira Main Event Cashes: 2 Main Event Earnings: $34,347 Current Online All-Time Money List leader Joao Vieira is looking to put his stamp on the Main Event. In 2019, he earned his first bracelet in the incredibly tough $5K Six-Max where he won $758,011. A great win to be sure, but Vieira is a world-class player and is looking for that televised result that will take his name to the next level. He has two previous Main Event results in Las Vegas, and a pair of cashes from WSOP Europe Main Event in both 2018 and 2019. He’s has all the skill one needs to survive to the endgame, the only question is - is it his time? #8. Kelly Minkin Main Event Cashes: 3 Main Event Earnings: $392,646 Kelly Minkin grabbed the title of Last Woman Standing in the Main Event in both 2015 and 2018, when in both years she finished inside the top 50. But one can’t help but feel like that title means little to Minkin who is pushing to always be the last person standing - full stop. In addition to her two deep runs, Minkin last made the money in the Main in 2019 and, with her doing what needed to be done in order to play this year, she’s in the perfect position to make a run at a final table...and more. #9. Adam Friedman Main Event Cashes: 4 Main Event Earnings: $373,989 Talk about a complete player, Adam Friedman proved that he's one of the best in today's game when he put on a historic performance in the 2021 $10K Dealers Choice, defeating Phil Hellmuth and winning the event for the third time...in a row. His $10K three-peat should be credentials enough to want to grab him in the Main Event, but a deeper looks shows that Friedman also crushes in the Main. He's cashing in the Main Event four times in his career with three top 200 finishes. If you add on the confidence he's going to feel heading into the Main, that makes him a top-tier choice to lead a squad. #10. Maurice Hawkins Main Event Cashes: 1 Main Event Earnings: $38,453 When it comes to the Main Event, Maurice Hawkins has the resume of the ideal player to succeed. He should be making deep run year in and year out. He’s the all-time leader in WSOP Circuit rings with 14 and knows how to battle against the type of player who comes to Las Vegas to take a shot in the Main Event. He’s a proven stack builder with more than $2.6 million in WSOP earnings. The interesting part about Hawkins is, when it comes to the WSOP Main Event, he’s had little success. He has a top 300 finish back in 2012 and nothing since. It’s surprising but perhaps he skipped a few, took some bad beats. Whatever has kept Hawkins from making his presence felt in this event we expect to end this year. #11. Tyler Cornell Main Event Cashes: 4 Main Event Earnings: $189,499 Early in the series Tyler Cornell captured his first WSOP bracelet when he took down the $25,000 High Roller for $833,00 - a career-high score. But prior to his early WSOP win, Cornell already had a stellar WSOP resume having cashed in the live Main Event four different times (2013, 2015, 2018, and 2019). Last year, he cashed in multiple online Main Events. First, he made the final table of the August GGPoker $5K Main Event in which he finished in 8th place for more than $328,000. Then in December, he tacked on another $35K with a deep run in the WSOP.com Main Event. #12. Faraz Jaka Main Event Cashes: 4 Main Event Earnings: $95,874 It’s hard to believe that Faraz Jaka has yet to win a WSOP bracelet, especially because of his reputation of being able to build mountains of chips in just about any tournament he plays. He has four career WSOP Main Event cashes (2014, 2015, 2017, 2019) and more than $1.5 million in WSOP earnings. If you take a close look at Jaka’s resume you can see just how many times he was on the verge of earning that career-defining score. This may be the year that this cashing machine makes headlines in the Main. Second Time Around It's one thing to make it to the final table of the Main Event once, it's remarkable to even consider doing it again (see: Mark Newhouse). While we didn't rank the following five players in our original twelve, it would be silly to sleep on any of these players in the Main Event. Phil Hellmuth Main Event Cashes: 8 Main Event Earnings: $1,333,618 Sixteen-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth has a knack for knowing how to play against recreational players. He’s the 1989 Main Event champ and has eight Main Event cashes in his career. Now, he’s only made the money once since 2015, but Hellmuth is on a heater in 2021 and this could be the year he returns with a deep run in the Main. Joe McKeehen Main Event Cashes: 2 Main Event Earnings: $7,707,826 Joe McKeehen has a reputation for being two things - one of which is being a master of navigating large field MTTs. Of course, everyone knows he won the Main Event in 2015 for $7.6 million. Since then he’s earned another two gold bracelets and made five World Poker Tour final tables. His latest WPT score took place earlier this year when he finished as the WPT Venetian runner-up for just over $490K. Of all the Main Event winners in the past 10 years, McKeehen might just be the favorite to make it back to the final table. Damian Salas Main Event Cashes: 5 Main Event Earnings: $2,493,281 Of course, Damian Salas might have something to say about which Main Event Champion is best suited to repeat. Salas, the winner of the 2020 online-live hybrid Main Event for a combined score of over $2.5 million ($1.5 million international, $1 million in the heads-up portion in Las Vegas) already had Main Event final table experience before his win last year. In 2017, Salas finished in seventh place for a $1.4 million score and he’s actually made the money in five of the last 10 Main Events which is more than enough proof that he’s always going to be a threat to make it back to a final table. READ: Desire To Remain Elite Drives New World Champ Damian Salas Cliff Josephy Main Event Cashes: 6 Main Event Earnings: $3,604,078 PocketFives Legacy Award winner Cliff Josephy is sometimes more well-known for his history of backing players during the online boom than his poker playing prowess. But make no mistake, Josephy has proven time and time again that he’s just as good at the game as those players he backed. Plus, he has a Main Event resume most would envy. He’s cashed six times since 2008 and made the final table in 2016 where he fell just two spots shy of being called a World Champion, earning $3.4 million for third place. He showed up for the Seniors Event this year, so we expect him to show out in the Main Event. Kenny Hallaert Main Event Cashes: 4 Main Event Earnings: $1,645,463 The ESPN story on Kenny Hallaert has been that he’s the tournament director who finally is getting the chance to show off what he can do on the felt. But those in the know understand that Hallaert has been beating online tournaments for years and cracked the worldwide top 20 back in 2017. He has nearly $6.8 million in online earnings and has earned partypoker POWERFEST and multiple PokerStars SCOOP titles. In the Main Event, he always brings his A-game. He’s cashed in the Main Event four times, three of which were top 125 spots and a peak performance of sixth-place in 2016 where he collected $1.4 million. - As we mentioned, there are going to be thousands of players in the Main Event, making it tough to narrow down our picks. Players like Antonio Esfandiari, Allen Cunningham, Davidi Kittai, Eoghan O'Dea, and Jake Schindler all have stellar records in the Main Event and would have likely been in contention to make the list, but it's hard to know if they'll show. So choose wisely and enjoy the next couple weeks of non-stop coverage of the return of the Main Event. The action kicks off with Day 1A on Thursday, November 4, and doesn't end until a winner emerges on Wednesday, November 17. (images courtesy: PokerGo)
The latest day of poker action has concluded at the home of the World Series of Poker, the Rio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. With two more bracelets won, there was also a pivotal day at the felt in the prestigious Poker Players Championship as Ryan Leng ended the third day on top of the leaderboard. Leng Leads from Arieh and Cates as 10 Remain in PPC Bracelet Hunt The third day of action in the $50,000-entry Poker Players Championship saw the remaining 35 players play down to just 10 who will return tomorrow to battle for the WSOP bracelet they all want to win and $954,020 up top. Leader of the pack with one day to close it out is Ryan Leng, who totalled 4.5 million chips by the close of play, but Leng will not have it easy with some of the best players in the world hot on his heels. Josh Arieh is closing to taking the lead from Leng, with both men having won gold already this Autumn at the Rio. Arieh has over 3 million chips, and both he and Daniel ‘Jungleman’ Cates (2.3 million) will harbor hopes of overtaking Leng before they reach the line. Elsewhere, a rollercoaster day for Daniel Negreanu ended with ‘Kid Poker’ surviving a brutal bad beat with Chris Brewer’s pocket eights getting there against the Canadian’s pocket aces when all the chips were in the middle pre-flop. Negreanu got through the money bubble and eventually ran his stack up to 700,000 by close of play. Others could not make it, and all of Adam Friedman, Alex Livingston, and Chris Vitch busted outside the money despite starting the day in the top 20% of the field. Others found the same fate, with Anthony Zinno, the current WSOP Player of the Year, busted before the money too, but some superstars of the game survived to fight another day. Eli Elezra (1,880,000) continued his great form this series, while Nick Schulman (1,280,000) and Day 2 chip leader Paul Volpe (900,000) will have designs on one of the most coveted bracelets of them all, and of course, getting their name on the Chip Reese Trophy. WSOP 2021 Event #60 $50,000 Poker Players Championship Final 10 Chipcounts: Ryan Leng - 4,500,000 Josh Arieh - 3,025,000 Dan Cates - 2,310,000 Chris Brewer - 2,025,000 Eli Elezra - 1,880,000 Matt Glantz - 1,575,000 Nick Schulman - 1,280,000 Paul Volpe - 900,000 Daniel Negreanu - 780,000 Mike Wattel - 670,000 Jean-Luc Adam Wins Super Seniors For First Bracelet The $1,000-entry Super Seniors event reached a conclusion with Frenchman Jean-Luc Adam earning his first-ever WSOP bracelet and the top prize of $255,623. With nine making the final table, Adam led from the start of that finale as overnight leader David Slaughter bust in 10th place for $18,837. Out in ninth place, just a few minutes after the final table began, was Gary Pagel, who earned $23,762 when his shove with [poker card="4s"][poker card="4h"] ran into Eugene Solomon’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="9h"]. An ace on the flop doomed Pagel and he was followed from the room just a few minutes later by Reginald Powell. Powell cashed for $30,269 when his [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Kc"] couldn’t come back against Alex Katsman’s [poker card="Js"][poker card="Jc"], as the board gave the latter a flush on [poker card="As"][poker card="Qs"][poker card="5s"][poker card="Ks"][poker card="Qc"]. Girish Apte departed in seventh place for $38,932 when his [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Jc"] ran into Bill Stabler’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Kh"], with a queen-high board no help at all. Not long afterwards, Joseph Richards joined him, as his [poker card="7d"][poker card="7s"] couldn’t get anywhere against the eventual winner Adam, whose [poker card="Qc"][poker card="Qh"] held to send Richards home with $50,559. Katsman went in fifth for $66,284 after his pocket eights couldn’t hold against Solomon’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="9h"], a flush on the river condemning Katsman to the exit door. He only lasted a couple of hands less than Bill Stabler, who won $87,722 when his shove with [poker card="Ac"][poker card="3c"] ran into Adam’s [poker card="Ah"][poker card="7h"] and lost to a flush on the turn. Three-handed, Scott Sukstorf was short and his laddering ended when his shove when short with [poker card="Ah"][poker card="8s"] ran into Adam’s [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Kh"]. A nine-high board sent Sukstorf home and gave Adam the lead into heads-up, with the Frenchman having 24 million to S0lomon’s 13 million. It was soon all over, Solomon moving all-in on a board showing [poker card="Jh"][poker card="7c"][poker card="5s"][poker card="4s"] with [poker card="Th"][poker card="9h"] and Adam calling with [poker card="Js"][poker card="7h"]. Solomon’s bluff still had a chance to catch an eight for a straight, but the [poker card="Ac"] river gave his opponent the well-earned title of WSOP champion. WSOP 2021 Event #58 $1,000 Super Seniors Event Final Table Results: Jean-Luc Adam - $255,623 Eugene Solomon - $157,986 Scott Sukstorf - $117,181 Bill Stabler - $87,722 Alex Katsman - $66,284 Joseph Richards - $50,559 Girish Apte - $38,932 Reginald Powell - $30,269 Gary Pagel - $23,762 Tag Team Crowns Winners In Event #59, the $1,000-entry Tag Team event, Mike Ruter and Samy Dighlawi won through after an intense three-hour heads-up battle saw the pip Tomer Wolf and David Landell to the crown and $113,366 top prize. Another team to star on the final day were Amanda Botfeld and her father David, who reached third place for a score of $49,512. In an emotional post on social media before the final, the younger of the pair thanked the elder statesman of the duo for their support and guidance. https://twitter.com/amandabotfeld/status/1455571669511139328 WSOP 2021 Event #59 $1,000 Tag Team Event Final Table Results: Mike Ruter & Samy Dighlawi - $113,366 Tomer Wolf & David Landell - $70,074 Amanda Botfeld & David Botfeld - $49,512 Michael Newman & Robert Ormont - $35,542 Alfie Adam & Vidur Sethi - $25,928 Benjamin Miner & Dmitriy Uskach - $19,226 Holly Babbitt & Michael Babbitt - $14,494 Zachary Erdwurm & Steven Jones - $11,114 Scott Johnston & Bob Fisher - $8,670 $600 Deepstack Down To 40 In Event #61, the $600-entry Deepstack, Perry Ernest proved strongest as he survived a busy Day 2 with the chip lead, holding 10.5 million by the time chis went into bags at the end of the night. With Sai Ruston (7,150,000) and Marc Rangel (6,800,000) in closest pursuit, the total field of 3,916 entrants is now down to just 40 payers, with only Barry Shulman (2,425,000) and Mark Seif (950,000) having won WSOP gold before. Players to bust on the day included Brandon Sheils, Philippe Souki, Philip Tom, and Kenny Hsiung, as well as Brett Apter and Day 1 chip leader Robert Hankins. WSOP 2021 Event #61 $600 Deepstack Championship Top 10 Chipcounts: Perry Ernest - 10,500,000 Sami Ruston - 7,150,000 Marc Rangel - 6,800,000 Richard Dixon - 6,430,000 Edgardo Rosario - 5,859,000 Jean Francois Alexandre - 5,480,000 Nicolas De Bari - 5,100,000 Ronald Slucker - 5,030,000 Fernando Viana Da Costa - 5,000,000 Rubin Chappell - 4,400,000 Just 13 Left In $1,5000 PLO 8 In Event #62, the $1,500-entry PLO8 tournament, Matthew Kaplan topped the leaderboard with 3.1 million chips on a day where everything changed for the former chip leader. Day 1 ended with Japanese player Tsugunari Toma sitting on one of the biggest leads anyone has built during this World Series of Poker. Toma, however, crashed and burned as Kaplan went in the opposite direction, barely lasting half the day as others such as Kevin Gerhart (2.9 million) and Dustin Dirksen (2.4 million) both thrived. Others to make the top 10 chip counts included Sterling Lopez (1,350,000) and Michael Trivett (730,000), with Gerhart the only remaining bracelet winner of the 13 players who are left, with British player Richie Allen still hanging onto a chance of debut gold with 515,000 chips at the next big blind of 50,000. WSOP 2021 Event #62 $1,500 PLO Hi-Lo 8 or Better Top 10 Chipcounts: Matthew Kaplan - 3,145,000 Kevin Gerhart - 2,900,000 Dustin Dirksen - 2,400,000 Roman Hrabec - 1,800,000 Sterling Lopez - 1,350,000 Dylan Wilkerson - 1,240,000 Tamon Nakamura - 1,145,000 Alexandr Orlov - 1,015,000 Bryant Bustamante - 805,000 Michael Trivett - 730,000 Players Turn Out For Salute To Warriors The opening day of the $500-entry Salute to Warriors event saw a great turnout, with 1,738 entrants reduced to just 169 players by the end of Day 1. Chip leader when the day closed was Andrew Moon, who was the only player to bag over a million chips with 1,274,000. He was followed in the chip counts by Taylor Pollard (866,000) and John Song (711,000), who along with Nicholas Verderamo (653,000), were the only three who amounted over half the impressive Moon’s dominant stack. With $40 from each player’s entry going towards the United Services Organization, a huge prize pool of $712,580 and a top prize of $102,465 means that plenty of money was raised for a great cause with big-name players such as Shuan Deeb donating along the way, although unfortunately for Deeb fans, the WSOP Player of the Year chaser didn’t make the Day 2 chip counts. WSOP 2021 Event #63 $500 Salute to Warriors Top 10 Chipcounts: Andrew Moon - 1,274,000 Taylor Pollard - 866,000 John Song - 711,000 Nicholas Verderamo - 653,000 Senthuran Vijayaratnam - 629,000 Terry Wheeler - 617,000 Kyle Besaw - 584,000 Alan Percal - 580,000 Marty Zabib - 557,000 Arnaldo Gordon - 536,000 Niklas Astedt Bags Big Stack In $5K NLHE/PLO Mix In the final event on the schedule, David Prociak (2,405,000) leads from Niklas Astedt (1,345,000) and Joni Jouhkimainen (1,215,000) in the $5,000-entry Event #64. With NLHE and PLO on the menu, other big names to bag top 10 chipcounts included Tommy Le (1,050,000), Uri Reichenstein (1,010,000) and Shar Levi (945,000), with players like Jason Somerville (690,000), Stefan Schillhabel (445,000) and Dan Smith (310,000) all still in with a chance of glory. WSOP 2021 Event #64 $5,000 NLHE/PLO Eight-Handed Top 10 Chipcounts: David Prociak - 2,405,000 Niklas Astedt - 1,345,000 Joni Jouhkimainen - 1,215,000 Greg Dyer - 1,175,000 Tommy Le - 1,050,000 Oliver Bosch - 1,020,000 Uri Reichenstein - 1,010,000 Shahar Levi - 945,000 Barak Wisbrod - 865,000 Corey Zedo - 785,000