Doug Polk likely became the first player ever who wasn’t present at the time he won a WSOP gold bracelet. He was busy competing in Event #67, the $111,111 High Roller for One Drop, at the time his teammate Ryan Fee finished play in Event #61, the $1,000 Tag Team No-Limit Hold’em.
Both players received a bracelet. The tournament began with 2,000 players among 863 teams. This was the WSOP’s first team event in 33 years, but it might come back into the roster going forward, as most participants seemed to enjoy the event.
But no one enjoyed it more than Polk and Fee, for obvious reasons. The pair each received $76,679 for first place. The runner-ups, Niel Mittelman, Adam Greenberg, and Gabriel Paul, took home $31,583 apiece.
Fee, a professional poker player and coach, won his first bracelet on just his third career WSOP cash. Polk, one of the top high-stakes pros in the world, now has a pair of gold bracelets.
88 Remain after Day One in One Drop
Things didn’t go quite as well for Polk in the High Roller for One Drop. After getting off to a great start, he couldn’t even make it out of Day One. Polk surpassed 1,200,000 chips at one point (players started with 500,000), but ran into a sick three-way hand against Liv Boeree and Koray Aldemir late in the day.
Aldemir, the chip leader heading into Day Two, opened for 40,000 with K♠K♦. Polk came over the top for 122,000 with J♦J♣. Short-stack Boeree was desperate for an opportunity to double-up. Or, in this case, triple-up. So she shoved her entire 129,000 chip stack with A♥J♠.
Aldemir then re-raised to 330,000 which didn’t scare away Polk. He put it all-in for 1,219,000 and received an instant call. The board ran out 7♦5♥3♣7♥Q♥. Game over for Boeree, and Polk was left crippled with just 140,000 chips. He later busted. This was the hand that sparked Aldemir to the top of the leaderboard. He ended Day One with 3,789,000 chips.
The great Fedor Holz, one of the top young talents in the game, is his closest competitor (2,884,000). There are 88 players out of 171 remaining.
There are many other big name pros still alive. That includes Michael Mizrachi (2,296,000), Jeff Gross (2,105,000), 2015 Main Event champ Joe McKeehen (1,866,000), Robert Mizrachi (1,830,000), Andrew Robl (1,486,000), Antonio Esfandiari (1,312,000), Scott Seiver (1,219,000), Erik Seidel (1,150,000), Dan Colman (895,000), Andrew Lichtenberger (874,000), Jason Mercier (857,000), Phil Hellmuth (589,000), Justin Bonomo (502,000), Brian Rast (502,000), and businessman John Morgan (391,000).
Play resumes on Saturday at 2 pm Pacific time.
Kyllonen Leads Four Left in $25k PLO
After three days of play in Event #62, the $25,000 High Roller Pot-Limit Omaha, Jens Kyllonen of Finland is the chip leader with three players remaining. He has 10,925,000 chips.
Tommy Le has 8,650,000 chips. And Dan Smith is in 3rd place with 3,425,000. Smith is one of the best active players in the world without a WSOP bracelet. He’ll need a strong comeback on Saturday to take his name off that list.
The Mizrachi brothers, Michael and Robert, had a rough day on Friday. Both ended Thursday’s action with huge chip stacks, but couldn’t get anything going on Day Three. Michael busted in 12th place and Robert went out in 9th.
Main Event Preview
Day One of the 2016 WSOP Main Event, the greatest poker tournament of the year, begins on Saturday. There are three total Day One flights beforee Day Two begins on Tuesday.
There are many interesting story lines to follow during this year’s Main Event. Will Phil Ivey finally show up to the Rio? Will Joe McKeehen, the defending champ, complain about having to wake up in time to play at 11 am? Will any big name pros make the final table? We’ll be following and reporting on all the action, of course.
What’s Up Next?
Event #66, the $1,000 WSOP.com Online Poker championship, is down to six players. Play began on Friday online, but the remaining six players will come to the Rio to finish things off on Monday live. Clayton “SLARKDUCK” Maguire is the chip leader.
Event #65, the $1,000 Ladies No-Limit Hold’em, began on Friday and will conclude Sunday. Anetta Holley is the chip leader with 112 players left. Vanessa Selbst sits in 9th place.
Other than the Main Event, no new tournaments will begin until July 12, when Event #69, the $1,111 Little One for One Drop kicks off.