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Stout Out Front in Six-Max, Kobe Appears at WSOP
A comparatively mellow day at the Rio in Las Vegas yesterday saw no bracelets awarded but a special video appearance by Kobe Bryant charged the atmosphere.
In honor of late Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss, a regular in the Seven-Card Stud event that kicked off, Bryant appeared on video to do the day's shuffle up and deal.
In tournament action Matt Stout, one of the best players still without a bracelet, led the final 13 players in the $3k Six-Max and Can Kim Hua and Calen McNeil were both on the brink of a bracelet of their own.
Stout Has Big Lead Over Kelly, Seidel, Schulman in Six-Max
The big-action event of the day was the ongoing $3k Six-Max event with 129 players cut to just 13 to end the day.
Veteran grinder and former PokerListings blogger Matt Stout will take a solid lead into the final day in search of his first bracelet.
Stout's 1,268,000 in chips is a good 500k above second-place Benjamin Pollak at 756,000.
As always the road to the bracelet is still littered with pros including Dan Kelly, Martin Finger, Erik Seidel and Nick Schulman.
Check our WSOP Live Coverage page for all the action starting at 1 pm. today. The final 13 and chip counts:
- 1. Matt Stout 1,268,000
- 2. Benjamin Pollak 756,000
- 3. David Pham 748,000
- 4. Andrew Dean 733,000
- 5. Dan Kelly 545,000
- 6. Jamie Rosen 533,000
- 7. Martin Finger 467,000
- 8. Erik Seidel 465,000
- 9. Nick Schulman 421,000
- 10. Matt Berkey 401,000
McNeil, Hua Pause on Brink of Bracelet
A bracelet was almost awarded in Event #20, $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo but the remaining two players couldn't settle things before the end of the standard 10 levels of play.
Calen McNeil and Can Kim Hua had the option to play on but Hua preferred to stop for the night so they'll come back today to finish things off.
McNeil, who owns a burger place in Victoria, Canada, has a 3.4m to 1.1 m chip lead over Hua.
Todd Brunson just missed a shot at his second bracelet, bowing out in third.
Brit Stephen Chidwick fell in sixth and longtime pro John Monnette in seventh. Results and payouts to this point:
- 3. Todd Brunson $107,349
- 4. Joe Ford $77,917
- 5. Tony Ma $57,521
- 6. Stephen Chidwick $43,120
- 7. John Monnette $32,798
- 8. Won Goag $25,283
- 9. Dao Bac $19,753
Kobe Honors Buss With Shuffle Up and Deal
The buzz going around the Rio was that Kobe Bryant was in the building but it turned out he would appear on video only.
In honor of Lakers owner Jerry Buss, who passed away this past year, Bryant gave the traditional Shuffle Up and Deal at the beginning of play.
A framed portrait of Buss was also placed near Phil Ivey's starting chip stack.
When play started in the $2,500 Seven-Card Stud event, a Buss favorite, 246 players took to the felt for Day 1.
Adam Friedman, who won the $5k Stud event last year, finished with the chip lead. The top 10:
- 1. Adam Friedman 48,300
- 2. Dario Alioto 35,100
- 3. Rex Clinkscales 33,400
- 4. Freddie Ellis 32,900
- 5. Mike Leah 32,400
- 6. David Chiu 32,100
- 7. Bertrand Grospellier 31,000
- 8. Owais Ahmed 29,000
- 9. Perry Friedman 28,000
- 10. Andrey Zaichenko 24,325
Stammen, Volpe, Cheong Out Strong in $1,500 PLO
The only other event to get started yesterday was Event 22, $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha.
Over 1,000 players showed up to play but by the end of 10 levels only 117 were left to see Day 2.
Keven "Stammdogg" Stammen, Alex Phahurat, Paul "paulgees81" Volpe and Joe Cheong were among the higher-profile survivors.
The top 10 in chips heading to Day 2:
- 1. Brandon Crawford 125,400
- 2. Alan Keating 123,900
- 3. Keven Stammen 100,200
- 4. Chris Del Grande 100,000
- 5. Pakinai Lisawad 95,000
- 6. Young Ji 87,000
- 7. Miguel Candelario 84,800
- 8. Nicholas Grippo 82,500
- 9. Alex Phahurat 76,000
- 10. Micah Smith 75,400