Event 55: $50k Players Championship - Live Updates

Day 3 Live Updates

07/03/2013 (2 years ago)

$50K Championship; Don Nguyen Leads Heading into Day 4

Don Nguyen
Don Nguyen leads Poker Players Champions at end of Day 3

73 players came back for Day 3 of the $50,000 Poker Players Championship but just 26 were able to make it through the day.

The field has yet to make it down to the money and final two tables but there will be some top players in the running for the title.

Doyle Brunson was the initial focus of our “Follow the Chips” coverage and he was running well in the tournament until today.

He was desperately short for a portion of the day but found some big hands and a double up to keep his hopes alive.

Brunson’s hopes were dashed in a big 7 Card Stud pot against Ofir Mor and the legend was sent to the rail empty handed in his first WSOP event of the year.

2010 WSOP Main Event Champion became our next focus and he finished well with only a few hiccups along the way. He will be in good position to make the money and go further.

He finished the day as one of the six players sporting seven-digit chip counts.

Players will return tomorrow at 2pm and play until the final table of eight is reached. Day 4 could last until the early morning hours.

Official Day 4 Chip Counts:

Don Nguyen - 2,059,000
Mike Gorodinsky - 1,650,000
Minh Ly - 1,458,000
Mike Wattel - 1,272,000
Michael Glick - 1,130,000
John Hennigan - 1,085,000
David Benyamine - 1,052,000
Troy Burkholder - 1,047,000
Jonathan Duhamel - 1,038,000
Mike Leah - 980,000
Matthew Ashton - 912,000
Bryn Kenney - 906,000
George Danzer - 779,000
Huck Seed - 690,000
Greg Mueller - 555,000
Tommy Hang - 450,000
Joe Hachem - 425,000
Kevin Song - 392,000
David Bach - 346,000
Gary Benson - 338,000
Joe Cassidy - 299,000
Stephen Chidwick - 291,000
Max Pescatori - 246,000
Erick Lindgren - 165,000
Justin Smith - 163,000
John Juanda - 89,000

Average Stack
Players Left
07/03/2013 (2 years ago)

Duhamel Dips in Final Level

Jonathan Duhamel
Jonathan Duhamel took at hit at the end of the day.

Another table broke this level and we got down to the final 32 players.

Four tables remain, but we still need to lose another two to make the money.

Don Nguyen is currently leading the $50K Championship with a massive lead of 1.8 million. David Benyamine is coming in second with 1.35 million and John Hennigan rounds of the top three with 1.1 million.

Our featured player, Jonathan Duhamel, briefly made it to the seven-figure chip mark but lost a few big hands at the in level 16.

Another Champ

The amount of former Main Event Champions at Duhamel's table doubled. The 2005 WSOP Main Event Champion, Joe Hachem, moved into the three seat.

Then he doubled up through the other world champ at the table.

The game was No-Limit Hold'em and blinds were 5,000/10,000. Hachem moved all-in for 123,000 and Duhamel called. Duhamel turned over A 9 and Hachem showed Q Q.

The board ran 9 6 Q J J 6 and one former world champ doubled up through another.

Out -Studded

The Duhamel lost a few big pots to Troy Burkholder.

The first came in Stud with 10,000/20,000 limits.

In one, Burkholder raised with a 6 and Duhamel called with an A.

Burkholder: (X)(X) / 6 Q 2 A / (X)

Duhamel: (X)(X) / A J T 3 / (X)

Duhamel bet on fouruth and fifth street and Burkholder called. Then Burkholder took the initiative on sixth street and the river. Burkholder turned over 2 2 7 after Duhamel called on the river and the former world champ mucked to Burkholder's full house.


The game switched to Omaha 8 and Burkholder raised from the button. Duhamel called from the big blind adn the flop came 7 6 4. Burkholder check-called Duhamel's bet and a K came on the turn.

There was another check-call from Duhamel and an 8 fell on the river. Burkholder check-called again and turned over A 9 K 2 to scoop the pot.

Duhamel mucked and was back down to about 750,000.


Day 3 was longer than the previous days but it's coming to an end. Thirty-two players remain and we might lost a few more for the end of the night.

Stay tuned for a full recap of tonights events, including a full list of counts for Day 4.

Average Stack
Players Left
07/03/2013 (2 years ago)

Duhamel Crosses Moves Over One Million

Mike Wattel
Mike Wattel lost some chips to the 2010 WSOP Champion

Players went on a 20-minute break and returned to Level 15.

There was an almost negligible chance that the day would end with this level since the floor said we would if we hit 24 players.

We started the level with 40 players and only lost 5 players. It's safe to say that Day 3 will last six levels.

It's also safe to say that Jonathan Duhamel is chipping up. Duhamel won a large pot in Omaha 8 and several in Razz.

A Scoop

Duhamel raised from the cutoff and Matthew Ashton three-bet from the small blind. Duhamel called and the flop came 4 J Q.

Ashton bet and a J came on the turn when Duhamel called. Ashton bet on the turn and again when the 5 came on the river.

Duhamel called and turned over A A Q 6. Ahston stared at Duhamel's hand for a few seconds and then mucked.

Canadian Razz

Duhamel is Canadian. He also won a few big pots in Razz.

Canadian Razz.

Mike Wattel brought it in with a K and Troy Burkholder completed with a 4. Duhamel raised with a 5 and only Burkholder called.

Wattel: (X)(X) / 4 6 Q

Duhamel: (X)(X) / 5 2 4

Duhamel led out on fourth street and again on fifth street. Ashton folded to Duhamel's bet on fifth street and the former world champ took down the pot.

Then he took another one from David Oppenheim.

Oppenheim raised with a 5 and Duhamel, with an A, was the only caller.

Oppenheim: (X)(X) / 5 7 7 K / (X)

There was a bet and a call on fourth and fifth street, but then Oppenheim folded to Duhamel's bet on sixth.

More Razz

Duhamel was doing well in Razz.

Burkholder raised with a 2, Joe Hachem called with an 8 and Duhamel called as well with a 6.

Burkholder: (X)(X) / 2 9----

Hachem: (X)(X) / 8 9 T

Duhamel: (X)(X) / 6 A 7

Duhamel bet on fourth street, prompting a fold from Burkholder and a call from Hachem. Duhamel bet again on fifth street and Hachem folded.

Then Duhamel won another hand of Razz.

Burkholder raised with an A and duhamel called with an A.

Duhamel: (X)(X) / A 3 K 6 / (X)

Burkholder: (X)(X) / A 2 Q 2 / (X)

Duhamel bet all the way and Burkholder until the river. Duhamel put out one final bet and Burkholder folded.

After that round of Razz, Duhamel was up to about 970,000.

Duhamel’s Queens

In the Limit Hold’em portion of the evening, Duhamel raised from the button and Ashton called from the big blind.

The Q 7 4 flop produced a check-raise from Ashton and Duhamel called. Ashton led out on the 9 turn and Duhamel put in a second bet.

Ashton called to the 5 river and checked. Duhamel fired a final big bet and Ashton called it down.

Duhamel rolled over Q Q for the flopped to set and moved well over 1,000,000 chip mark.

Top 10 chips stacks according to WSOP.com:

1. Don Nguyen - 1,800,000
2. Mike Wattel - 1,100,000
3. Justin Smith - 1,100,000
4. Tommy Hang - 1,040,000
5. John Hennigan - 1,020,000
6. Jonathan Duhamel - 1,000,000
7. George Danzer - 900,000
8. Stephen Chidwick - 885,000
9. Greg Mueller - 800,000
10. David Benyanmine - 780,000

Average Stack
Players Left
07/03/2013 (2 years ago)

Duhamel Hit by Bullets; Oppenheim Quadruples

David Oppenheim
David Oppenheim was the big winner during Level 15

Our new feature table and “Follow the Chips” player have not been boring since returning from dinner.

Plenty of action to keep those on the rail squeezing against the barrier and chips are sliding in every direction.

Jonathan Duhamel lost a few chips during the level but he also was able to miss a few big hits.

Oppenheim Quadruples

The first hand of No Limit Hold’em had the potential to be a tournament turner but instead was a huge jump for David Oppenheim.

Oppenheim opened for his entire 50,500 stack and was called by Troy Burkholder in the cutoff.

Duhamel looked at Burkholder’s stack and also called. Greg Mueller wasted no time in announcing 200,000 and moving two stacks in the middle.

That caused Oppenheim to lean back in his chair awaiting the other decisions.

It seemed Burkholder folded easily but Duhamel seemed pained. He finally folded and the race was on.

Mueller was holding J J against Oppenheim’s A Q.

The flop was an Oppenheim friendly A Q 5. The 5 turn prompted Oppenheim to beg for “no heart!” and he was rewarded with the 7 for a full quadruple up.

Duhamel Can’t Dodge Bullets

Duhamel found himself in a No Limit Hold’em pot with Burkholder. Action folded to Burkholder and he limped before Duhamel pushed it to 15,000.

Burkholder pulled the little used limp-raise move, putting 45,000 and Duhamel.

Burkholder stayed aggressive with a 40,000 bet after the Q 6 5 flop and Duhamel again called.

Both players checked the T turn followed by Burkholder checking the 9 turn.

Duhamel tossed in 72,000 and Burkholder instantly called. Duhamel turned over top pair K Q and seemed confident until Burkholder rolled over A A.

Duhamel flipped his cards back over and his stack was six-digits shorter.

Racing the Clock

It seems a certainty the field will play the full six levels today unless players run into some disastrous results. They are 16 eliminations from calling it a night.

Some of the most recent to the rail include Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier, Shaun Deeb, and Richard Ashby.

Don Nguyen has emerged as the most recent chipleader but that keeps changing on a level-by-level basis.

Top 10 chips stacks according to WSOP.com:

1. Don Nguyen - 1,150,000
2. Matthew Ashton - 1,100,000
3. Justin Smith - 900,000
4. John Juanda - 800,00
5. Troy Burkholder - 720,000
6. David Benyamine - 720,000
7. Jonathan Duhamel - 700,000
8. Minh Ly - 690,000
9. George Danzer - 670,000
10. Tommy Hang - 630,000

Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

40 Left, Duhamel Takes it to the Limit

Jonathan Duhamel
Jonathan Duhamel is up to 780,000.

Jonathan Duhamel, like every player in the $50K Championship, does not have an easy table draw.

The only seat players don't have to worry about is number three, and that's because it's empty. 

Mike Wattel is in the one seat with 620,000 and Troy Burkholder is in the two with 460,000. Then we have our lonely empty three seat followed by Duhamel, who's now up to 780,000. Greg Mueller is to Duhamel's left and has 370,000. Then comes the tournament chip leader, Matthew Ashton, who's sitting with a stack of 1.1 million.

Aside from being our chip leader, Ashton is the only tournament millionaire at the moment.

Tom Koral is in the seven seat with 450,000 and David Oppenheim finishes off the table 135,000.

Active Duhamel

Duhamel represents 50 percent of former Main Event champions still in the field. Aside from the  notoriety that comes from winning that event, Duhamel has been making his presence known by playing several pots.

The game was Limit Hold'em and blinds were 6,000/12,000.

Oppenheim raised from the cutoff and Duhamel called from the big blind. The flop came 4 J 7 and Duhamel checked. Oppenheim bet and then called after Duhamel raised. The turn was an A and Duhamel checked again.

Oppenheim bet and Duhamel called, bringing a T on the river.

Duhamel checked one more time and Oppenheim checked behind.

Duhamel turned over Q 6 for a flush and Oppenheim folded.

Duhamel then lost one pot to Greg Mueller and another to Tom Koral before taking more chips from Oppenheim.

Losing Limit

Duhamel raised from the small blind and Mueller re-raised from the big blind. Duhamel four-bet and Mueller called.

There was an A 6 2 flop and Duhamel check-called Mueller's bet. The turn brought a 3 and a round of checks.

A 4 came on the river and Duhamel check-called a bet from Mueller.

Mueller turned over A 9 and Duhamel mucked.

Then it was Koral's turn to limit the size of Duhamel's stack.

Duhamel raised from under the gun and Koral three-bet from the button. Duhamel called and the flop came 4 3 T. Duhamel check-raised Koral and a 5 came on the turn after Koral called. Koral called Duhamel's bet and the 4 fell on the river.

Duhamel bet again but folded to Koral's raise.

Limited Victory

The following hand, Oppenheim raised from the cutoff and Duhamel called from the big blind.

Players got a 4 3 8 flop and Duhamel check-called Oppenheim's bet. The turn brought a 6 and another check-call from Duhamel.

A K completed the board and both players checked.

Duhamel turned over 7 2 for the preflop anti-nuts and a pair of twos.

Oppenheim looked at his hand and mucked.

After that hand, Duhamel was 6th in chips with about 780,000.
Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

Players Return from Dinner Break

Jonathan Duhamel
Jonathan Duhamel takes center stage in our coverage.

44 players have returned from their dinner break, refreshed and ready to position themselves for the last half of the day.

Matthew Ashton grabbed a huge pot near the end of the last level to go over 1,000,000 in chips and take the lead.

Keith Gibson, Michael Thuritz, and Lamar Wilkinson are in the most danger as they return with less than 60,000 in chips.

Our coverage moves forward with Jonathan Duhamel as he attempts to add a Poker Players Championship bracelet to his Main Event title.

Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

Brunson Put out to Stud; Focus Moves to Duhamel

Doyle Brunson
Doyle Brunson's run came to an end after 13 levels

Doyle Brunson did not play the $50,000 Poker Players Championship like a man who was tired of the game.

He played as well as anyone in the field but just couldn’t get as lucky as the rest of the kids.

Brunson made it through 2 and a half days of 8-game mix but was eliminated with just 47 others remaining.

Stud Does Doyle’s Day

Brunson was moving along quite well in the third level of the day. He wasn’t playing many pots but picked it back up in the No Limit Hold’em portion again.

It was in 7-Card Stud where he met his end at the hands of Ofir Mor.

The first hand found Brunson completing the action showing the T and only Mor stayed around with the 9.

The both checked with Brunson receiving the 5 and Mor the 4. Brunson bet when he paired with the 5 and Mor called with the 6.

Mor than paired on sixth street with 9 and led out for a big bet which Brunson called with his 3.

Mor again led on seventh, Brunson called after a short consideration and mucked after Mor showed (Q)(9)9 4 6 9(6)

Brunson’s final hand came a short time later and it was once again Mor who did the damage.

Brunson completed showing the 8 and Mor raised with the A.

The betting took them to sixth street when Brunson’s last chips went in the middle.

Brunson: (7)(7)8 T 6 6

Mor: (A)(8)A 4 T 4.

Brunson’s two pair were far behind Mor’s bigger two pair and the 3 did not boat him up.

It was an impressive run for the “Godfather of Poker” but that will not help him pay off his bets on this event.

Duhamel, Come on Down

2010 WSOP Main Event winner Jonathan Duhamel has running hot during the Poker Players Championship and we will be shifting our coverage to the Canadian.

Duhamel has bucked the downward trend of recent WSOP Main Event champions as he’s cashed in tournament for nearly $2,000,000 since winning the big bracelet.

Players are now off on their 60 minutes dinner break.

Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

Ashton Leads, Brunson Climbs

Matthew Ashton
Matthew Ashton leads the $50K Championship.

Play has picked up on Day 3.

We only saw a handful of eliminations on the first day and lost less than 30 players in Day 2. Now, after two levels of play, we're down to our final 54 players.

As we enter level 12, players will be faced with 5,000/10,000 blinds and 10,000/20,000 limits. This puts the average stack at just 18 big bets or 36 big blinds.

Matthew Ashton is currently leading the back with 800,000 while Doyle Brunson has kept chipping up and is now up to 150,000.

But with rising blinds and limits, Doyle will have to keep winning pots if he wants to cash and win his bets.

Brunson Pots

Brunson's chips at the end of the level didn't come from one large pot, but several small ones. Brunson rose from 110,000 to 150,000 in round of Razz and Limit Hold'em.

While Brunson gained some chips in Razz, he lost a few to 2011 Poker Players Champion, Brian Rast.

With 8,000/16,000 limits, Brunson raised with (X)(X)A and Rast three-bet with (X)(X)3.

Rast: (X)(X) / 4 5 6

Brunson (X)(X) / A 2 K

Brunson called Rast's bet on fourth street but folded on fifth.

Rast is one of two Poker Players Champions still left in the field along with David Bach. Rast is currently below average but Bach is nearing the lead with 737,000.


According to WSOP.com, the top 10 counts are:

1. Matthew Ashton - 800,000

2. Justin Smith - 780,000

3. David Benyamine - 770,000

4. Jean Gaspard - 760,000

5. David Bach - 737,500

6. Jonathan Duhamel - 730,000

7. Tommy Hang - 660,000

8. Don Nguyen - 606,000

9. Adam Friedman - 600,000

10. Troy Burkholder - 594,000

Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

Brunson Doubles Again; Dodges the Undertaker

Erik Sagström
Erik Sagström did not tangle much with Brunson since the double

Doyle Brunson may not need that undertaker quite yet.

He doubled at the start of the level and then found another double shortly after, but he was active until then with his new chips.

He raised the first three hands of No Limit Hold’em from early position and only saw one flop to pick up the blinds/antes.

Doyle Doubles Again

The game was 7 Card Stud and Brunson was heads up with Brian Rast.

Brunson led the betting each street until Rast raised on fifth street.

Brunson: (X)(X)T T 7

Rast: (X)(X)T Q 5

Brunson called and all the chips went in the middle on sixth and the cards were turned over.

Brunson: (A)(J)T T 7 2

Rast: (K)(Q)T Q 5 9

Rast was on a flush draw and Brunson needed help to stay alive. He slowly peeled his seventh street and snap showed the A for Aces up

Rast pulled a useless 5 and Brunson had another double.

Brunson stayed active in many pots once he was back over the 100,000 mark including chopping up a number of big multi-way Omaha/8 pots.

Big Antes

Jared Bleznick was sitting near Brunson while he was short-stacked and he kept checking on the Godfather.

“I’ve only got 9,500 over her Doyle,” Bleznick shouted, “That’s not even one big bet at this level.”

“The ante is 1/5 of my stack!”

Gone But Not Forgotten

Bleznick was not long for the tournament with his short-stacked and was shortly joined by Allen Kessler, Alexander Kostritsyn, Jeff Lisandro and Jason Mercier.

Jean Gaspard and Justin Smith were swapping the lead over the last level with David Benyamine and Jonathan Duhamel still lurking.

Top 10 chips stacks according to WSOP.com:

1. Justin Smith - 780,000
2. Jean Gaspard - 760,000
3. Jonathan Duhamel - 730,000
4. David Benyamine - 700,000
5. David Bach - 683,500
6. Tommy Hang - 660,000
7. Don Nguyen - 606,000
8. Adam Friedman - 600,000
9. Troy Burkholder - 594,000
10. Minh Ly - 585,000

Average Stack
Players Left
07/02/2013 (2 years ago)

Brunson Drops, Then Doubles

Doyle Brunson
Brunson doubles to stay in the game.

Doyle Brunson started the day on a downwards spiral.

He started the day 265,000 but slid down to about 10,000 by the time the first level was over.

A lot of Brunson's chips went to Erik Sagstrom in a round of Stud.

Studless Brunson

Limits were 6,000/12,000 and Sagstrom raised with a 8 and Brunson called with an 6.

Brunson: (X)(X) / 6 9 7 J / (X)

Sagstrom: (X)(X) / 8 2 7 4 / (X)

Sagstrom bet on every street and Brunson called all the way down.

Sagstrom turned over 9 7 2 at showdown for deuces and sevens while Brunson showed A 7 3 for sevens.

2-7 Triple Doyle

The round of 2-7 triple draw did not go well for Brunson. He was involved in a lot of hands and lost most of them.

In one hand, Brunson lost even more chips to Sagstrom.

Blinds were 3,000/6,000 and Sagstrom called from the small blind. Brunson checked from the big blind and both players discarded two cards. Sagstrom bet, Brunson called and both players took one card.

They both checked after the second draw and Sagstrom patted on the last draw. Brunson took one card and both players checked on the river.

Sagstrom showed a ten and Doyle showed a jack before mucking his hand.

Brunson lost a few more hands and ended the level with just about 10,000.


On break, Brunson unleashed this tweet onto the internet:

Then he doubled. In one of the first hands back from break, Brunson put what was left of his stack in against Tam Hang.

Both players drew two cards on the first draw and then Brunson stood pat. Hang took one card on the second and third draw but couldn't beat Brunson's 9-8-7-2.

Brunson doubled up to 30,000 to stay in the game. 

Average Stack
Players Left
1 2

Event Information

Event Name
Event 55 - $50k Players Championship
Rio Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas
Final Day
Buy In
Prize Pool
First Prize

Event Chip Leaders

2 years ago
Player Chip Count
1 Don Nguyen 7750000
2 John Hennigan 7500000
3 Matthew Ashton 3800000
4 David Benyamine 1300000

View all player chip counts

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