On May 26, 2011, the WSOP Fantasy Auction Draft took place at the Aria Hotel and Casino.
Fifteen teams coughed up the $25,000 entry fee for a combined prize pool of $375,000.
Only four teams will get paid and whoever wins will be taking home $225,000.
We'll find out what team that is on July 19th.
But what if a draft player makes it to the November 9? an observant reader may ask.
Well, observant reader, it doesn't matter. If any of the players in the draft make it that far, the points will be distributed according to chip counts.
The chip leader will take points for 1st, second in chips will earn the points for second place and so on and so forth.
In the Lead
Jason Somerville and Jason Mercier are currently in the lead, their team has a total of 636 points.
65 per cent of those points come from another dynamic duo, Ben Lamb and Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier.
Lamb has scored the team a total of 207 points and ElkY has contributed 204.
Second place is currently occupied by Erick Lindgren.
He trails Mercier and Somerville by 160 points, for a total 476. Lindgren owes most of his points to three of his draftees: George Lind, Eric Froehlich and Shawn Buchanan.
Coming in for the surprise third is Team Brunson.*
*Team Brunson is led for and paid for by Todd Brunson.
Brunson was actually in the bottom-half of the field until after the $50,000 Poker Player's Championship.
Not only did Brunson have Phil Hellmuth, he was lucky enough to have drafted Minh Ly.
Hellmuth's second place finish earned the team 92 points and Ly's third place finish gave Brunson another 82.
These extra 174 points boosted Brunson up from 277 to 451, where he currently stands.
This bumped Scott Seiver and his team out of the money, a fact he noticed while play was nine-handed at the $50K Championship.
The full payout structure looks like this:
1st – $225,000
2nd – $93,750
3rd – $37,500
4th - $18,750
Seiver and his team, which included Justin Bonomo and Eric Froehlich, was knocked down to fifth place.
The last paying spot belongs to James Bord and Toby Lewis' team.
They had no deep runs in the $50K, but they had a fair amount of good, consistent players.
Richard Ashby, Nick Shulman, Shaun Deeb and Anthony Lellouche provided the team with 17 cashes and 382 of their 420 points.
The Less Profitable Bunch
While all these players have proven valuable, others have not.
Vladimir Shchemelev is currently in last place with only 88 points.
Penultimate place belongs to Frank Kassela and Shaun Deeb. The former Player of the Year recruited himself, but only earned 20 points this year.
Team Kassela/Deeb also spent $89 – all teams started with budget of $200 that they could not exceed – on drafting Daniel Negreanu.
Despite playing 32 events, Negreanu only cashed twice for a total of three points.
But the worst investment of the draft was Phil Ivey.
Ivey was the most expensive player in the draft, costing Barry Greenstein $108.
As you may know, Ivey did not play a single WSOP event.
Huck Seed also went for a hefty amount of draft dollars. He was drafted by Ashton Griffin and Justin Smith for $50. Seed played 19 events but didn't manage to get a single cash.
Shannon Shorr was also less than impressive for his team. Even though he sold for a single draft dollar, Shorr played 37 events and only managed to cash once.
The Race is Still On
Despite a commanding lead by Team Somerville/Mercier, it's still anyone's game.
While the Main Event is only one of 58 events, it's a game changer.
A cash in the Main Event will give a player 70 points.
That means, hypothetically, if all eight players in Shchemelev's team cash – and no other players in the draft do – he can jump into first place.
And if a player makes the November 9 with the chip lead, then they'll earn their team 168 points.
That means a few cashes in the Main Event can stir up the field yet again.
The league isn't over yet!