Consider the case of Chad Brown, who dominated play early in the tournament by accumulating a big chip lead on Day 1b with a wicked double-elimination that claimed Andy Black and Jonathan Little was the first to go, virtually vanishing from play minutes after he was assured a paycheck, and Xuyen "Bad Girl" Pham was sent to her room soon after, having just barely managed to limp into the money.
More shocking was the departure of Johnny "Bad_IP" Lodden. The young online phenom had come into the day fifth in chips and had built his stack to over $400,000 before collapsing, donating a large portion of his stack to the Gavin Griffin fund before finishing off in 60th place for €13,270 in what had to be a disappointing finish.
We hit the dinner break with 42 players remaining, and after an hour and twenty minutes of intermission the players returned needing to subtract 10 from their number before the day ended. It did not take long at all.
Immediately after dinner, Gunnar Ostebrod got his short stack into the middle while making an attempt to steal the blinds and antes with 9-3 off-suit, but the young Norwegian was called by Pete "The Beat" Giordano with pocket sixes. The Beat lived up to his name, laying the smack down on Ostebrod as the board failed to improve either player, and the after-dinner rush was on.
The rush would last all of 45 minutes, with six players busting within 20 minutes of clearing their plates and the last four eliminations occurring basically back-to-back as three professionals suddenly decided to take back their Sundays.
As Sergey Altbregin went out in 36th, Hendon Mobster Joe Beevers was all-in for himself at the feature table. Beevers found himself in bad shape when his push was called by Jan Veit, who showed kings to The Elegance's K-Q, and the situation got worse when the flop brought a king and two tens. For the second time in the day, a player was drawing to running tens to survive, and for the second time the board bricked out, sending Beevers to the rail in 35th place for €20,230.
While PokerListings.com was reporting the Beevers bust-out, Thomas Wahlroos was dusting it up with Gavin Griffin, and the Finn got his money in on the turn with Q-4 and the board showing K-Q-3-5, only to find himself drawing dead to rights as Griffin showed pocket treys for a set. That would be the end of young Thomas, who shipped his stack to Griffin and left quickly, apparently to find a bar in which to spend a €20,230 payout of his own.
He would be followed soon after by Chad Brown, who as mentioned above found his sevens in a bad place against pocket kings, sending him and the rest of the field home after only about eight hours of play, a welcome change from back-to-back 12 and 13 hour marathons.
The final four tables will return to play down to a table of eight tomorrow, with the action starting at 2 p.m. Monte Carlo time and continuing until the deal is done. Andy Black is chip leader with a whopping $709,500, and he's followed by Dean Sanders ($695,600), Anthony Lellouche ($651,300), and Gavin Griffin ($629,200). Also still in the hunt are Ram Vaswani, Carlos Mortensen, Josh Arieh and Mark Karam, among others.
Like Greg Oden in the low post, PokerListings.com is unstoppable on the tournament trail, bringing you the livest of updates chock-full with the goriest of details. Tune in tomorrow for another serving (note: this article is being written before the Georgetown-OSU game is decided; if Ohio loses, consider this conclusion hilarious in its unintentional irony, but no reflection on PokerListings.com as a tournament reporting news organization. We're still unstoppable).