2012 Main Event: Day 4 Done, 282 Remain

The herd is beginning to thin.
The herd is beginning to thin.

The drop in players is becoming stunningly evident as there a number of vacant tables sitting in the Amazon room. The once jam packed poker arena is starting to look sparse due to the drop in numbers.

As the end of the day draws to an end, so do the unfamiliar faces. The sea of “unknowns” are starting to wade to the surface as players we should be on the lookout for.

Volpe in Charge

One player we don’t have to wait to put a name to is Paul Volpe. Everything has been going his way today. He was able to hit the next unattained chip mile stone with more than 3 million chips.

Volpe’s biggest previous cash was at the 2011 edition of this very event. He banked $47,107 for his 192nd finish in last year’s Main Event. This year, he is looking to out last his previous record. If he continues accumulating chips in this fashion, he will surely be able to bypass his previous Main Event cash.

Kevin Pollak Isn’t Ready for the Show to End

Nearly every Main Event sees at least one actor/celebrity make the money. Lou Diamond Phillips made the deepest celebrity finish in recent memory with his 186th place finish in 2009.

Kevin Pollak is the last standing member of the Hollywood set here at the Main Event. As the tournament progresses he only gets stronger.

The next payout level is $38,453.

We were able to catch up with him as he very loudly celebrated a big double-up. He was able to get it in with kings versus queens, and his hand held up. Pollak’s stack looks a little more lively, as he’s up over 700,000 chips.

Elisabeth Hille Wishes This Day Would Never End

Betfair qualifier Elizabeth Hille probably wishes this day would never end, as it’s one she’ll likely never forget.

She’s gone on an absolute tear over the last few levels, and she’s been running in god mode. She’s not just hitting big hands, but she’s also been fortunate enough to have her opponents hit the flop fairly hard themselves.

She called a 28,000 raise from an early position player, and the two saw a A J 10 flop. Her opponent check-called a 36,000 bet from Hille on the flop.

When the 8 hit the turn, Hille fired out 50,000 and her opponent quickly check-raised all-in for about 150,000 more. Hille just as quickly called and turned over A J for top two pair. Her opponent was behind with A Q.

A harmless river sent another pot Hille’s way, pushing her up around 2 million chips.

The Remains of the Day

It’s beer time for many players with just a few minutes left to play here on Day 4. We started with just under 700 players and that’s been trimmed all the way down to 284. The final numbers for the day won’t come out until after everything is bagged and tagged.

We’ve still got some big names in the mix. Negreanu, Selbst, Mizzi, and Juanda are among the recognizable faces. However, as is the case with many Main Events, it’s a pack of relative unknowns atop the leaderboard.

Eric Buchman
Eric Buchman runs a deep stack for Day 5.

Its still a very long road to the final nine, and the names will likely change throughout the next few days.

This is what the leader board looks like for the end of the day:

1. Paul Volpe - 2,750,000
2. Erik Hellman - 2,216,000
3. Dave D'Alesandro - 2,093,000
4. Kyle Bowker - 2,081,000
5. Eric Buchman - 2,076,000
6. Elisabeth Hille - 2,014,000
7. Andras Koroknai - 1,971,000
8. Amit Zulkowitz - 1,961,000
9. Eric Legoff - 1,947,000
10. Nicco Maag - 1,899,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com


Average Stack
Players Left
Tables Left

2012 Main Event: Deeb & Ho Can't Hold On

Deeb can't outshine his earlier WSOP cashes.
Deeb can't outshine his earlier WSOP cashes.

The last hour of the night is upon us, and there are currently 346 players fighting their way through the money. Players have gone up a few pay spots and are guaranteed $32,871. When the player count drops to 306, the next pay jump will be reached and will increase their value to $38,453.


Short stacked players don’t necessarily have the luxury of coasting into the end of the day. John Juanda, and Amit Makhija are fighting for their Main Event lives as each have under 200,000.

Amit Makhija @amak316: “Trying my hand at lucky beer level #2 of this main event. Haven't had to use it since day 1. 163k at 5k-10k.”

John Juanda @LuckBoxJuanda Dear: Poker God, Please help keep my WSOP dream alive. Last level of the day& I only have 165K (H/L: 430k/160k) #FinishStrong”

Deeb Wastes Four Days

One short stacker that won’t be recovering from the Main Event economy is Shaun Deeb. He has had a rollercoaster chip ride for the last few days. He has been at the top and towards the bottom of the chip counts over the last few days. However, today would be the last ride he takes at this carnival.

Shaun Deeb @shaundeeb: “Guy loses 2m pot shoves 75k I iso 77 he has qj 894k10 fun runouts 90k left”

Shaun Deeb @shaundeeb: “Out shoved 115k jj get called by Buchanan otb with kjs he rivered king fun waste of 4 days”

Maria Ho
Maria Ho is out of the Main Event, but there are still some ladies left to represent.

Shaun Deeb @shaundeeb: “sorry phone autocorrected my hand had a5o not jj”

Deeb was still able to make a profit on his time here at the Main Event, but it probably pales in comparison with his other WSOP cashes. His best cash this year was taking 2nd place in a satallite for the Big One Drop million-dollar buy-in event. He took home a handsome $1 million for that event, which certainly over shadows what he made here today.

Maria Ho is No More

Maria Ho slipped to 100,000 chips, and she found those chips slide away when she shoved over a raise of 26,000. The initial raiser insta-called when the action folded back around to him.

He tabled A K, and was far ahead of Ho’s A J. She needed a lot of help to stay alive. Unfortunately, it was help that never came, as the board bricked out for her and she was left waving goodbye to the Amazon room.

It likely won’t give her any comfort, but three other women are flush with chips and over the 1 million mark, including Vanessa Selbst (1.8 million), Gaelle Baumann (1.2 million), and Elizabeth Hille (1 million).

Top 10 Chip Counts

Paul Volpe                          3,150,000

Ben Greenberg                    2,020,000

Vanessa Selbst                    1,800,000

Erik Hellman                       1,800,000

Dave D’Alesandro                1,780,000

A.J. Jejelowo                       1,750,000

Leo Wolpert                        1,500,000

Ercan Olgun                        1,455,000

Jamie Robbins                     1,450,000

Nghi Van Tran                      1,444,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: There Will Be A New Champion

Phil Collins’ Main Event has come to a close.
Phil Collins’ Main Event has come to a close.

And Then There Was One

Phil Collins’ recent exit means that just Sam Holden is left from last year’s November Nine, but he’s showing no signs of going anywhere anytime soon. He has spent much of the day with is stack hovering around 700,000.

And Then There Were None

Main Event champs left in the field, that is, as Johnny Chan’s exit means that we’re guaranteed to have a brand new Main Event champion, one who is currently seated among the 350 or so players left in the field.

Elisabeth Hille Quietly Builds a Stack

We’ve talked a lot about how prominent female players such as Vanessa Selbst, Maria Ho, and Claudia Crawford are fairing today. However, there are several other women who are putting themselves into great shape for a deep run here at the Main Event.

One of those is Betfair qualifier Elisabeth Hille from Norway. She is sitting in the corner of the Amazon Room away from a lot of the fanfare and hubbub -- possibly a good thing as she’s managed to amass a stack of close to 900,000 chips.

She doesn’t have any other live event cashes to her name, and she is likely looking to follow in the footsteps of players each year who manage to run good at the right time and take down their first big poker cash at the Main Event.

Christina Lindley
Christina Lindley was nursing a short stack, but she wasn't able to bring it back to life.


Christina Lindley @lindleyloo: “Busted a9 v Aj blind vs blind. Finished 360th for 33k..#gg Glgl To@DBTRandall & @sorelmizzi still in.. Thanks for all The Support everyone”

Filip Verboven @VerbovenFilip: “Busted 423rd for $28.530. Thx everyone for support, and thx@happyfreaked @webjoker for another top notch coverage!”

Terrence Chan @tchanpoker:”I wish I were still in. I really do. But I'm very blessed just to even get to play the WSOP for 9 years, when so many dream of doing it.”

Philip Collins @USCphildo: “Time to play lots of NCAA football 13 on PS3 and golf. might not play poker for a month.”

Paul McTaggart @BobaFettdozer11:”Busto. QQ v 66 all in pre. 6 on the flop. Fkn sigh! 364th wsopme”

Shawn Buchanan @shawnbuchanan1:”Just busted 404th In wsop main, yes I was still in everyone, flying under the radar as usual! gl to all left”

Break It Up

Players are now on their last 15-minute break of the day. The early bubble and an unscheduled break caused today’s schedule to get slightly out of whack from the planned routine.

As a result we’ll have a slightly early night here, with players sitting down to play their last level of the night. They should be bagging and tagging their chips before midnight so they can have a good nights rest before returning tomorrow

Vivek Rajkumar
Vivek Rajkumar's aggressive style couldn't get him past Day 4.


It has been a fast moving day, and it has been tough to keep track of all the bust outs. That being said, here is a list of some of the players who were in the money, but out of the glory:

Antonio Esfandiari

Christian Harder

Bernard Lee

Bruno Lopes

Salvatore Bonavena

Vivek Rajkumar

Justin Young

David Peters

Johnny Chan

Chris Moorman

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Negreanu Makes A Surprising Play

Negreanu makes an unexpected fold.
Negreanu makes an unexpected fold.

We are about an hour into the 18th level, and despite the formula of the day, there haven’t been any interruptions. The blinds and antes have gone up which means that players are paying 4,000/8,000 blinds and 1,000 antes.

Almost half the field is gone from the start of the day with 392 players left.

Negreanu Takes a Hit

Daniel Negreanu has been booming today, but he just lost over 200,000 chips in an odd spot where he insta-folded to his opponent’s shove on the river for just a fraction of the pot.

With about 50,000 chips already in the middle, Negreanu’s opponent checked on a flop of 10 4 3. Negreanu pushed out 26,000 and his opponent quickly check-raised to 80,000.

Negreanu thought for a bit before calling. The 6 came on the turn, and Negreanu’s opponent wasted no time cutting out a bet of 125,000. This left his opponent with less than 100,000 behind.

Negreanu took much longer this time to decide his next move. He checked his cards several times, then checked his opponent’s remaining chips, and then did a little mental math. The math must have been right because Negreanu  just smooth-called the bet.

The river was the 2 and his opponent duly lumped his last 100,000 into a pot that had swelled to nearly 600,000 chips. Negreanu insta mucked faster than his opponent could get the chips into the pot--all to the shock of his opponent and onlookers.

“I didn’t have anything,” Negreanu explained, saying that he’d planned to instantly put his opponent all-in if he’d checked to Negreanu instead of betting on the river.

Negreanu still has about 300,000 chips in front of him so Kid Poker isn’t down for the count just yet.

That’s Some Sick Poker!

Sometimes watching the amateur players at this stage of the game is just as compelling as watching the pros. We were able to catch a hand between two amateur players on table 413 which could be the sickest hand of the day.

We watched as the player under the gun (UTG) raised to 18,000 with A J. A player in middle position (MP) called, and the rest of the players on the table folded.

The board came out 2 6 4. The UTG player continuation bet for 22,000, and the MP player called.

When the 8 hit the turn, the UTG player double barreled for 75,000. The player in MP thought for a long time before making the call.

As soon as the 4 came on the river, the UTG player calmly announced that he was all in. This is when the MP player really tanked. It looked like he was thinking of calling off his last 180,000 with a small pair.

The MP player looked at his opponent’s stack a few times, noting that he was covered 3-1 in chips.

After about five minutes, the MP player called and turned up his A K for ace-king high.

Teddy Sheringham
Teddy Sheringham is still alive and well in the Main Event.

 The UTG player sighed and simply said, “good call” as he turned up his A J for ace-jack high.

The middle position player flew out of his seat in a victorious celebration to let everyone around him know about his amazing call.

Sheringham Strikes Again

It’s no surprise to see football great Teddy Sheringham go deep in a poker event but he’s quietly played his way to his best showing at the WSOP.

Sheringham has been hitting the poker circuit up for years since his retirement from football.  His results have been picking up the last few years -- including a $100K+ cash for his 5th place finish at the 2010 EPT Vilamoura main event.

He currently has about 250,000 chips to work with, and is looking to add more cashes to his resume.

Top 10 Chip Counts

Ben Greenberg                            2,095,000

Dave D’Alesandro                        1,695,000

Jonathan Seelbach                       1,650,000

Paul Volpe                                   1,590,000

Erik Hellman                               1,425,000

Nghi Van Tran                             1,346,000

Richard Pyne                              1,330,000

Shahriar Assareh                        1,300,000

Michael Shelton                          1,285,000

Vanessa Selbst                           1,282,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Never a Dull Moment At The Main Event

Players are back in their seats and ready for some more action!
Players are back in their seats and ready for some more action!

Cards are back in the air after an unscheduled early dinner break. Just before the break it looked like the WSOP staff was clamoring about trying to figure out if the payouts were correct. This caused a 20-minute delay in which the players were getting antsy while they waited for cards to be dealt.

Ultimately, it was decided that players would take their dinner break early while the staff figured out if there was a problem or not.

As Twitter exploded with a mass of players wondering what the problem was and how it could have happened, the WSOP issued this statement through Twitter:

WSOP @WSOP: “Erred on side of caution to triple check. We'll keep it moving towards $8.5mm when players return at 7:30 to resume play.”

As players began to file into the Amazon room, the tournament official announced that there were no issues with the payout, but they wanted to make sure. To ease tensions with the players, it was decided that there would only be two more levels in today’s play. Players will have this two-hour long level, a fifteen-minute break, and another two-hour level before the day is out.

Now that we have that all sorted out, lets get back to the action!

Players Left

2012 Main Event: A Day Of Unscheduled Breaks

Cheong is looking for a 2010 repeat of the Main Event.
Cheong is looking for a 2010 repeat of the Main Event.

There have been quite a few unexpected delays in today’s festivities. First, the bubble burst was a slight setback. Then, play was paused because players were dropping out so fast and the floor staff had to get caught up on the count. Now, there seems to be an issue with the payouts, and things have once again been halted.

We will have more information on what the payout issues are when we receive more information.

Joseph Cheong is at it Again

Joesph Cheong used the 2010 Main Event final table as his stage to really burst onto the poker scene and he’s at it again this year, building up a dangerous stack of 800,000 and looking like he might have another deep run in him.

He’s been very active on the circuit since his 2010 final table and displayed his knack for amassing chips, finishing 114th in the 2011 Main Event and going deep in WPT and EPT events around the globe.

He’s had a great 2012 WSOP so far, finishing runner-up in the $5,000 NLHE Mixed Max event for $296,956 and cashing in a total of three WSOP Events (as well as booking cashes at events at the Venetian and Bellagio this summer in Vegas).


Players went on their second 20-minute break of the day, and we tapped into the twitter feed to see what the pros had to say.

Gavin Smith ‏@olegsmith: Break have 141k, need to get this show moving!”

Katie Dozier ‏@Katie_Dozier: “Went out with Aa vs TT aipf, had a blast! 451 for $24808”

Vanessa Selbst ‏@VanessaSelbst: “1.28MM going into second break. Mid 400s left.”

Amit Makhija ‏@amak316: “Exactly 420k at break, shame I'm not a pothead or I'd be really happy with that stack. Still cool with my day thus far!”

Daniel Negreanu ‏@RealKidPoker: “@DNChips someone at my table has 736k. That is me!!!”

Terrence Chan ‏@tchanpoker: “199k, spinning the tires a bit today, but still obviously a workable stack. Also gg to @Katie_Dozier who got aces cracked aipf.”

Unscheduled Dinner Break

The payout issue has still not been solved, and tournament officials stopped the clock when players came back from their 20-minute break. As players grew restless trying to figure out what the hold up was, clusters of WSOP staff could be seen speaking amongst themselves.

After a 15-20 minute period of waiting around, officials announced that players would be going on their dinner break early. Officials will take the time to figure out what is going on with the payouts during the dinner break.

No statements have been made on what the issues are, but they were adamant that cards would be back in the air at 7:30pm.

Dinner Break Top 10

Ben Greenberg                        2,018,000

Dave D’Alesandro                     1,760,000

Paul Volpe                                1,607,000

Nghi Van Tran                           1,459,000

Erik Hellman                             1,400,000

Vanessa Selbst                         1,282,000

Michael Shelton                         1,280,000

Ricky Markowitz                         1,170,000

Leo Wolpert                               1,125,000

Jacob Balsiger                           1,100,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Ho Takes A Hit While Champion Doubles

Ho puts on the pressure, and ends up doubling her opponent.
Ho puts on the pressure, and ends up doubling her opponent.

Since players are dropping so fast the schedule for today is going to be slightly off from previous days. Players will be going on a 90-minute dinner break at 6:00 pm until 8:00pm. Instead of playing the usual 5 levels of play, it looks like it might be an early day with only 4.5 levels being completed for the day.

Maria Ho Ships Chips

Maria Ho is one of the last remaining women in the field, and she has been able to stay above the chip average for most of the tournament. This has given her ample opportunity to play a wide range of hands against her opponents.

She had just split a big pot against an opponent when she flopped a flush draw with K 9. Her draw turned into a four-straight which allowed her to chop the pot with her opponent.

The very next hand, Ho called a 12,000 raise from the middle position player directly in front of her. The middle position player behind her raised to 33,000. It folded around to the initial raiser who folded. Ho looked at the stack of her opponent and quietly announced she was all in.

“I call!” her opponent quickly stated.

Ho: J J

Opponent: A K

The board wasn’t looking too hot for Ho when it came K 2 6. Ho would need to catch a jack if she wanted to keep her chips in front of her. The rest of the board laid out 2 A.

Ho was forced to ship a total of 224,000 from her stack to double up her opponent.

Negreanu Having a Big Day

Daniel Negreanu is always a crowd favorite and he’s been especially chipper today -- picking up a heap of chips early on always helps.

Daniel Negreanu ‏@RealKidPoker: In the money in the WSOP main event for the 2nd straight year with 412k avg is 300k. My 5th cash of the 2012 WSOP and 3rd in the last week.”

Daniel Negreanu ‏@RealKidPoker: “My WSOP main event stack on the bubble now looking healthy! Let's do this. http://instagr.am/p/NCM220olAJ/ "

Daniel Negreanu ‏@RealKidPoker: “A rainy day in Vegas. Friday the 13th. Trying to make top 666. Based on how my luck has gone this month today is the perfect day!”

At last count Negreanu was closing in on the 500,000 chip mark, picking up chips when he knocked out a short-stack. He was holding pocket queens versus the short-stack’s pocket sevens.

Chan on the Ropes

Johnny Chan has been at the ESPN feature table all day, but so far it’s an experience he’d rather forget. His healthy stack to start the day has been whittled all the way down to just 90,000 chips. That leaves him with less than 20 bets, so he will surely be pushing in his stack in the near future.

Huck Seed
Seed gets out flopped and leaves Chan as the last remaining Champion.

Huck Hits the Rails

Huck Seed was the only other Main Event champ still in the running. We haven’t seen Seed actually play a hand over the last few days, but he’s managed to stay just active enough to keep pace with the blinds and antes.

Huck Seed’s quest for a second Main Event victory just ended. Seed patiently waited  for a spot to double, but he found himself crushed when all his chips went in the middle.

Seed and a single opponent made it to the turn with the board showing K 10 6 #.4d.  Seed’s last 100,000 chips went in on the turn, and his opponent snap-called and tabling K 10 for top two.

Seed angrily shook his head before finally showing A K. He would need an ace on the river to survive.

The 4 on the river wasn’t what he needed to stay alive, so was Seed eliminated leaving a short-stacked Johnny Chan (120,000 chips) the last Main Event winner still standing.

One Luongo Remains

NHL goalie Roberto Luongo may have seen his Main Event end with a min-cash, but his brother Fabio is still going strong. Fabio got his chips in dominated with A 4 versus A Q. However, he was able to hit when the A 4 J flopped. The board blanked for his opponent and he was able to double up to over 500,000 chips.

Meanwhile, Roberto has been chilling out watching the ESPN feature table for the last few minutes. As he hovered over the rail, he was able to witness Johnny Chan double-up. Chan’s A J drew out against pocket eights when Chan spiked a jack on the flop. Chan was able to double up to 250,000 chips.

Top 10 Chip Counts

Ben Greenberg                           1,950,000

Paul Volpe                                  1,710,000

Dave D’Alesandro                        1,400,000

Nghi Van Tran                              1,380,000

Jonathan Seelbach                        1,360,000

A.J. Jejelowo                                1,300,000

Ricky Markowitz                            1,300,000

Erik Hellman                                1,180,000

Leo Wolpert                                 1,168,000

Jacob Balsiger                              1,100,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Pepper Spray Attack

Players and floor staff alike had to duck for cover.
Players and floor staff alike had to duck for cover.

Players took their first break of Day 4. They got a slightly longer 30-minute respite due to coloring up and racing off chips. They came back to play level 17, which has 3,000/6,000 blinds with a 1,000 ante.

"If I can't win, I'll pepper spray"

It’s been an exciting day so far, having the bubble bursting in a dramatic fashion with four eliminations during the first hand-for-hand round. It was only a few minutes after play resumed from the bubble burst that a new development arose from the felt.

There was a player fiddling around with what he thought was a pen that he found in the parking lot. Unfortunately for everyone who was around him, that pen turned out to be a pepper spray. When he clicked the cap, it unleashed an ungodly wreaking havoc of pepper spray for the next few minutes.

The culprit’s table, and the few tables around his, flew out of their chairs coughing and covering their mouths. Thankfully, it only took a few minutes for the cloud of gas to clear, and action resumed. However, coughs could be heard throughout the tournament area for the next 30-minutes.

Pepper spray
"What? I thought it was a pen!"

Just Barely Made It

Usually when the bubble bursts, players who were blinding away are able to shove knowing that they’ve at least made some dough to compensate for the long hours of play.

This tournament is no different. Players are dropping fast now that the money bubble has been reached. Tournament officials have even stopped the clock in the second level of the day to catch up on updating the player count.

Jason Mercier, Roberto Luongo, and Liv Boeree are just some of the big names that were able to just squeeze into the money.

What’s Ahead

Now that we’re in the money the next step for many players is to keep laddering up the pay table, padding the amount of cash they’ll walk away with as the money payouts increase.

Below are the next few rungs on the payout table and where we’ll likely finish up the day when play wraps up with around 300-350 players likely surviving Day 4:

307-378: $32,871

379-450: $28,530

451-522: $24,808

523-594: $21,707

595-666: $19,227

Top 10 Chip Counts

Ben Greenberg                              1,260,000

Sean Rice                                      1,170,000

Bryan Vanrijsbergen                       1,150,000

Sean Rice                                      1,145,000

Erik Hellman                                  1,115,000

Nghi Van Tran                                1,100,000

Dave D’Alesandro                           1,060,000

A.J. Jejelowo                                  1,020,000

Kunal Patel                                     965,000

Leo Wolpert                                    950,000

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Off The Bubble, On The Money

Dan Shak just misses being the bubble boy.
Dan Shak just misses being the bubble boy.

It has been an exciting last hour here in the Amazon room. Not only did we hit the money bubble, but we surpassed it with ease in just one hand.

Bubble Bubble, Toil and Trouble

Hand for hand play went into effect when 669 players remained. That meant each table would play a hand and then pause, waiting for all tables to finish that hand before dealers are allowed to shuffle up and deal a new one.

In this stage of the game, it is always a little different as far as how long the bubble and hand-for-hand play actually takes. In some years, the bubble has been as quick as five or ten minutes, while other years it’s taken well over an hour to separate the haves from the have nots.

The tournament director told all the dealers that if there was an all in and a call, play would have to be paused until after all the hands were completed. If there wasn’t any all in action, dealers could stand when the hand was completed at the table so that the tournament official would know all the hands were complete.

Dan Shak is a Lucky Man

 Hedge fund manager Dan Shak has plenty of experience at poker’s highest levels but a live misclick nearly sent him to the rails here when Shak missed a raise in front of him and tried to steal the blinds with K 7.

They saw a flop of J K 6 and checked it through to the 7 on the turn. Backing into two pair, Shak likely was happy to get it all-in on the turn -- until his opponent turned over 7 7 for a turned set.

Shak binked the K on the river, though, turning his misclick into a big double-up and at an opportune time smack on the bubble.

Daniel Shak ‏@daniel_shak: “Flopped K check turn 7 we get it all in he has 77 omg was going to be out on bubble by mistake cameras all come river K!!!! Omg#onetimeused”

Daniel Shak ‏@daniel_shak: “Thought was raising from small blind with k 7 bb folded didn't realize someone had raised when I went to raise BB"

Daniel Shak ‏@daniel_shak: “got the luckiest ever on bubble in hand I played by mistake hit 2 outer on river against set# wasSBraiseddidn'tknowsomeoneraised before”

Shaun Deeb
Shaun Deeb kept his stack healthy during the bubble.

Bubble Tweets

Shaun Deeb ‏@shaundeeb: “Bubble going badly double 910 vs aj I turn. 9 he riv j then@MazeOrBowie with q6 vs ak then 88 vs qq 600k still”

Jason Mercier ‏@JasonMercier: “Folded every hand so far today. Down to 52k. Best hand I've had is K7o. We 8 from the money. #wsopME”

Katie Dozier ‏@Katie_Dozier: “Reaaally close to the money, short stack just raised sb and begged bb to fold, and it worked. #thatwasntme #stayingalivethough :)”

Paul Volpe ‏@paulgees81: “Real close to the moola. Kinda want the bubble to last longer so I can get more chippes”

Marvin Rettenmaier ‏@MadMarvin: “Lady steals the blinds AGAIN w her 15bb stack, smiles and goes: "@shaundeeb taught me how to play on day 2!":D 75k=15bb,7 to the money”

Daniel Negreanu ‏@RealKidPoker: “@DNChips busted a guy with AA vs TT 380k now!!!”

We Have Our Bubble Boy(s)

Hand for hand action lasted exactly one hand. As dealers started popping up from their seats after the hand was completed, it was confirmed that there were five all-ins with calls behind. Those hands would have to wait to be played out until all the hands were completed and the tournament official could announce them.

Here is how the all-in hands looked:

Bubble Hand 1:

Steve Rosen shoved for his last 85,000 from under the gun. Gwennael Grandmougin was in the small blind and made the call.

Rosen: K K

Grandmougin: A A

The board came out 7 5 5 3 Q which was enough to eliminate Rosen. However, since there were more all in’s Rosen would have to wait to see if he would be the only one to finish outside of the money.

Bubble Hand 2:

Roberto Riva raised to 11,000 from under the gun, and Desmond Portano three-bet to 32,500. Action folded back around to Riva who moved all in for the rest of his stack.

After a few moments of tanking from Portano, Riva called the clock, and the pressure was on Portant to call-which he did.

Portano: K K

Riva: 5 5

The board came 9 6 5 Q A which gave Riva a set of fives and sent Portano to the rail to stand with Rosen as a bubble boy.

Bubble Hand 3:

Dane Lomas was all in holding A A, and he was against the A K of Devin Looney. The board came out K K 7 2 J. Unfortunately, Lomas was holding the best hand preflop, but Looney was able to pull out ahead and knock Lomas out.

Bubble Hand 4:

Christina Lindley was holding A A when she moved all in. She got a call from David Kelley who was holding Q Q. The two players were really close in chips, but it was Kelley who was at risk for elimination.

The board ran out A 2 T 6 7 which gave Lindley the save and Kelley the boot.

Conclusion: We're In The Money!

There were actually five all in hands during the first round of hand for hand, but one was aces versus ace-king, and the aces held up to which there was no elimination. That means that there were four players who were eliminated during the first hand.

The four players would tie for 666th place, splitting the $19,227 in cash to give each a little under $5,000 each.

The four will also play a single table Sit n Go to see who gets the $10,000 entry to the 2013 Main Event that was reserved for the bubble boy, so the winner of that will actually manage to walk away with a decent haul for finishing “out” of the money at the Main Event.

Players Left

2012 Main Event: On The Bubble Verge

Sam Holden is still in the running for a second November Nine.
Sam Holden is still in the running for a second November Nine.

There seems to be a lot of excitement in the Amazon room this afternoon. Players are dropping like flies and we expect by our next update we will be on the money bubble or in the money.

Spectators are starting to loom around to catch a glimpse of big name players from the rails. Every once in awhile a player will shoot up from his seat with a burst of excitement which we assume means that they were able to suck out to stay in the game.

Cue Spooky Music

Superstitious poker players returning for Day 4 and the money bubble have several reasons to be a little spooked. Not only is today Friday the 13th but the money bubble this year is at 666th place, which is worth a min-cash of $19,227.

Of course the “bubble” is slightly misleading here, as the player who finishes just out of the money here at the Main Event traditionally gets a free $10,000 entry to the next Main Event. It hasn't been confirmed that is the case this year, but we are assuming it will be true for this year as well. If that is the case, it’s really the player who finishes two off the money that gets the pain of bubbling the Main Event and walking away with nada.

Roll Call

Our surviving November Niners from last year’s Main is dwindling, with just the following players still chasing a final table seat for the second straight year:

Sam Holden: 424,500 chips

Phil Collins: 252,500 chips

That just highlights how hard it is to navigate your way through the modern era of huge Main Event fields, and the importance of making your final table count if you’re lucky and skilled enough to ever get there -- it’s quite likely the one shot you’ll have in your poker lifetime to emerge a Main Event winner.

As far as Main Event champs still alive, here’s that list which has been chiseled down as well:

Johnny Chan: 374,500 chips

Huck Seed: 137,500 chips

Seed was saddled with a short stack for much of yesterday but found a way to stay alive, while Chan took a big hit early but rebounded late in the day to bring a healthy stack into play today on Day 4.

The Leaders of the Pack

Four players managed to crack the one million chip mark last night when they bagged up chips, who will likely have very little sweat early on Day 4 when the money bubble looms:

Dave D'Alesandro - 1,100,000

Sean Rice - 1,076,000

Jacob Balsiger - 1,065,000

Leo Wolpert - 1,003,500

Those are massive stacks, but by the end of play today the leader will likely have 2-2.5 million chips, so even the chip leaders will be under pressure today to keep grinding up those stacks and building chip towers to the sky if they want to stay ahead of the curve and among the leaders.

Vanessa Selbst
Vanessa Selbst is representing the ladies with a nice stack on Day 4.

Checking in With the Ladies

We’re nearing that time when -- right or wrong -- the talk starts cranking up as far as “last woman standing” in the Main Event, with the focus turning to how high the last woman in the field finishes.

This might be the year to render that sort of thinking moot, as female players have put in a very strong showing so far in the 2012 WSOP. Several women have built up big stacks so far and have just as good a shot, or better, than any men in the field of not just making the final table but winning the whole thing.

The always dangerous Vanessa Selbst came into today with a big stack of 800,000 chips. Maria Ho (382,000) and Liv Boeree (207,500) sat with plenty of chips to work with as well.

Vanessa Selbst ‏@VanessaSelbst: "Mini heater to end the day with 814k! Day 4 tomorrow."

Maria Ho ‏@MariaHo: "Back for Day 4 of the @WSOP Main Event. Coming into today with 382,000 chips. 720 players remain, 666 spots pay. #letsgetit"

Liv Boeree ‏@Liv_Boeree: "Friday the 13th, 666 get paid... could there be anything a metal loving girl nicknamed "The Iron Maiden" could love more?‪#numberofthebeast‬"

Top 10 Chip Counts

Sean Rice                           1,170,000

Dave D’Alesandro                1,129,000

Erik Hellman                       1,100,000

Ben Greenberg                    1,060,000

Leo Wolpert                        1,010,000

Bryan Vanrisbergen             1,000,000

Niels van Alphen                  930,000

A.J. Jejelowo                       910,000

Jacob Balsiger                     845,000

Daniel Rudd                        834,500

Chip Counts Courtesy of WSOP.com

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Stacked Feature Table

Johnny Chan starts the day on the ESPN feature table.
Johnny Chan starts the day on the ESPN feature table.

Cards are in the air, and Day 4 of the Main Event is underway. The tournament announcer made his preliminary speech and said that players will be playing five levels today with a 20-minute break after each level.

There is no surprise there, but if there is a long bubble, players might have to stay past the usual 12:45 am to make up for lost time.

All of the remaining 720 players are packed inside the Amazon room which means that we have passed a pivotal mile stone in the Main Event. Another mile stone which will be uncovered today is the money bubble.

There are several short stacks coming into today’s play, so we should see the bubble early in the day.

ESPN Feature Table

The ESPN Feature Table has been fired up today and it hosts a pretty well rounded line up. Vivek Rajkumar, Erick Lindgren, and Johnny Chan will be battling at the feature table. Rajkumar is known for being a very aggressive player, so we expect the action on this table to be something to watch out for.

Here is the line up for the feature table:

1             Scott Blackman                         315,000

2            Patrick Khayat                            106,000

3            Louis Werman                             147,000

4            Johnny Chan                               374,000

5            Vivek Rajkumar                           678,000

6            Erick Lindgren                             222,000

7            Anthony Scherer                          249,000

8            Remy Cucak                                185,000

9            Sean Giesbrecht                          148,000

Players Left

2012 Main Event: Day 4 Preview

Jason Mercier could use a double up.
Jason Mercier could use a double up.

It’s Day 4 of the 2012 WSOP Main Event and the money has never been closer.

Just 54 players need to bust before the 666 remaining players have earned a minimum of $19,227 for the efforts here in the Main Event.

Once the bubble bursts we expect a cavalcade of bust outs as short stacks happily ship their chips into the middle.

The chip stacks are starting to get enormous with four players over a million chips including leader Dave D’Alesandro with 1.1 million.

Poker pros Sean Rice (1.07 million), Leo Wolpert (1 million), Vanessa Selbst (814,000), Sorel Mizzi (738,000) and Vivek Rajkumar (678,000) are all in the top 30 so it will be interesting to see the kind of moves they make as the money bubble approaches.

Meanwhile Daniel Negreanu, Huck Seed, Christina Lindley, Jason Mercier, Chris Moore and NHL goalie Roberto Luongo are all short on chips and will need a double up ASAP.

Action begins in about an hour so be sure to check back to this page for real-time live updates of the 2012 Main Event.

Here are the top 10 chip counts to start the day:

Dave D'Alesandro - 1,100,000
Sean Rice - 1,076,000
Jacob Balsiger - 1,065,000
Leo Wolpert - 1,003,500
Ben Greenberg - 963,000
A.J. Jejelowo - 928,500
Daniel Rudd - 834,500
Jonathan Seelbach - 824,000
Michael Ferrell - 821,000
Paul Volpe - 820,000

Players Left

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