WSOP chip mystery remains unsolved

Jamie Gold

Close to 2.5 million extra chips came into play during the latter stages of the 2006 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event. Both Harrah's and the Nevada Gaming Commission (NGC) have completed their investigations about the incident and concluded that the extra chips on the final table most likely ended up there by mistake.

With 8,773 players paying a $10,000 buy-in, 87.73 million chips should have been in play, but instead the count came to 90.14 million.

Where did these 2.41 million extra chips come from? Neither Harrah's nor the NGC has a distinct answer to that question.

"There were extra chips that had been introduced into the tournament, inadvertently apparently," said Jerry Markling, chief of enforcement for the gaming commission in USA Today.

"We looked at several angles to determine whether or not there was any criminal involvement, and we could not substantiate that there was any."

"We made some recommendations to Harrah's concerning ways to avoid that occurring in the future, and we closed the investigation."

Markling also stated that it's not unusual for extra chips to occur during coloring-ups, and even though 2.4 million is a bit steep, the mistake didn't "significantly impact" the tournament or "benefit any one person."

2006 WSOP Main Event champion Jamie Gold thinks it's not a very big deal.

"They didn't give me any more chips," Gold said in USA Today. They just miscounted. It can happen. They're doing it so fast … They did an amazing job."

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