With a $15,000 buy-in, this tournament usually attracts the cream of the poker crop, and today was no different.
The man whose name adorns the marquee hit the felt, and Texas Dolly wasted little time getting his $45k starting stack up to $70k within the first couple of levels. Eventually Brunson leveled off, though, and will more than likely return for Day 2 below the average stack.
There really isn't any bigger name in poker than Phil, whether you're talking about Hellmuth or Ivey, and both got things going inside the friendly confines of the Fontana Room in familiar fashion today.
Ivey shot up the leaderboard in the early levels much the same way he did at the 2007 DBFDWPC, but it was really Hellmuth putting on the show.
Sitting the first few levels out, like he does just about everywhere, the Hellmuthian One then pompously sat down as the fourth level of five began, making up for lost time in short order.
First he berated one lesser-known for hitting a gut-shot on him, then he bluffed 2006 Steve Billirakis and a whole host of others will have threatening stacks when the serious poker begins at noon on Day 2, two days from now.
PL.com will be back at Bellagio tomorrow at noon, however, when a second crop of Five Diamond dreamers begin their quest for poker immortality.
The rest of the best are bound to be here and if you don't want to miss a thing, you know where to be.