A total of forty-two poker players paid $1 million each to get smacked around by Sam Trickett on Day 1 of the 2014 Big One for One Drop.
At least that’s what it felt like as Trickett amassed 13.4 million chips while busting Vanessa Selbst, David Einhorn and Igor Kurganov in the process.
To put things in perspective the English pro essentially had built a final table stack mid-way through Day 1.
“I think I’m living in fantasy land,” said Trickett about his stack.
Numbers Drop from 2012 Big One
As expected the Big One drew some of the biggest poker names in the world including Daniel Negreanu, Phil Ivey and defending champ Antonio Esfandiari as well as business elite Paul Newey, Brandon Steven and Bill Klein.
More surprising was the fact the 2014 Big One failed to hit the cap of 56 players. In fact the event fell six players short of hitting the 2012 mark of 48 players.
Still, it’s hard to argue with a tournament that will have a prize pool of $37 million and a first-place prize of $15.3 million. It appears Antonio Esfandiari will hold onto his title as the biggest winner ever, however.
Perhaps most importantly the event raised $4.6 million for the One Drop Foundation which helps people across the world gain access to clean drinking water.
Some of the newcomers to this year’s Big One for One Drop included Gabe Kaplan, Jean-Robert Bellande and Greg Merson.
Noted Macau High Rollers Richard Yong and Paul Phua failed to make an appearance and that might explain why poker pros such as Andrew Robl and Vivek Rajkumar failed to materialize.
Perhaps the most notable absence was Phil “Poker Brat” Hellmuth who finished fourth in this event last time around and won $2.6 million.
Hellmuth attempted to raise funds last minute to play the massive event and even showed up in the Rio to play but ultimately fell about $130k short of the buy-in.
Einhorn Crashes Out Early
Businessman David Einhorn was the first player to bust on Day 1 of the Big One when he had the misfortune of flopping a set against Sam Trickett who turned a straight.
Incredibly Einhorn didn’t even last more than an hour in the competition. It was unfortunate because Einhorn was planning on donating 100% of his earnings to charity. He said he will still play the Main Event, however.
Vanessa Selbst was the first woman to ever participate in the Big One for One Drop and with her amazing ROI in high rollers everyone was expecting big things. Unfortunately she was also eliminated by Trickett in the early stages of the tournament.
It was a bad day for Germans as Kurganov, Max Altergott, Andrew Heinecker and Philipp Gruissem were all eliminated as well. Rono Lo, Brian Rast, Dan Smith, Jason Mercier and Stanley Choi were also eliminated.
There were a total of 11 eliminations throughout the day and 33 players will return to action tomorrow.
Here are the top 10 chip counts courtesy of WSOP.com:
- Sam Trickett - 13.4 million
- Tom Hall - 9.1 million
- Phil Ivey - 7.6 million
- Daniel Colman - 6.8 million
- Antonio Esfandiari - 6.7 million
- Noah Schwartz - 6.2 million
- Rick Salomon - 5.8 million
- David Sands - 4.6 million
- Phil Galfond - 4.3 million
- Daniel Negreanu - 4.2 million