The 20th day of the 2015 World Series of Poker saw only one gold bracelet awarded, but it went to a superstar of the game in Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond, who stopped no-limit 2-7 juggernaut Nick Schulman from winning the $10K Championship of that variant for the third time. Meanwhile, two-time bracelet winner Hoyt Corkins bagged up the most chips out of the remaining 29 players in the Monster Stack.
In addition, four other events played out at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. Here's a look at everything you need to know from Monday's action.
Two-Time Bracelet Winner Hoyt Corkins Leads Final 29 in Monster Stack
Day 3 of Event #28: Monster Stack $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em, a tournament that attracted 7,192 players and created a prize pool of $9,702,000, saw 272 players return to action, but after 10 levels of play, just 29 would remain in contention for the $1,286,942 first-place prize, with two-time WSOP bracelet winner Hoyt Corkins leading the way.
Others still in contention include 2014 WSOP bracelet winner winner Asi Moshe (5,545,000), boisterous Brazilian Caio Toledoq (4,920,000), Team Blue Shark Optics Pro Ted Leahy (4,390,000), circuit grinder Jake Bazeley (2,200,000), and the short-stacked Josh Wallace (870,000).
Top 10 Day 3 Chip Counts
|1||Hoyt Corkins||Glenwood, AL||9,300,000|
|2||Kevin Kung||Newport Beach, CA||8,580,000|
|3||Jeff Kaplan||West Hills, CA||8,215,000|
|4||Jonathan McCann||Cumbria, GB||5,610,000|
|5||Asi Moshe||Tel Aviv, Israel||5,545,000|
|6||Eric Place||Willington, NS, CA||5,410,000|
|7||Petr Bartagov||Moscow, RU||5,135,000|
|8||Gregory Milliron||Phoenix, AZ||5,030,000|
|9||Richard Alati||Phoenix, AZ||5,030,000|
"It went good," Corkins told PokerNews after bagging and tagging. "I ran pretty good for the most part. Seems like I won two-thirds of the races. Took a couple of beats, but I give more than I took. I like my chances, but you know anything can happen. The blinds go up, and you can run cold for a couple of levels and be out. Nothing is for sure. It's hour levels, and the short stacks get short and can move all in on you, so that makes it difficult too."
Of course things didn't go so hot for hundreds of players on Day 3. Among those to bust were Kyle Cartwright (220th - $6,990), Maria Mayrinck (187th - $6,990), Garry Gates (173rd - $6,990), Benjamin Zamani (140th - $8,155), Scotty Nguyen (101st - $8,155), Blake Barousse (60th - $19,806) and Scott Montgomery (36th - $36,700).
Day 4 of the Monster Stack will kick off at 11 a.m. local time on Tuesday with the plan of playing down to the final table of nine.
Galfond Wins Second Bracelet; Denies Schulman Third No-Limit 2-7 Championship
Online cash legend Phil Galfond, known for playing under monikers like “OMGClayAiken” and “Jman28,” took down Event #29: $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship. He won $224,383 for his efforts in topping the smallest field of the 2015 WSOP thus far, 77 players. It's Galfond's second bracelet, with the other coming in a pot-limit Omaha event in 2008.
“It means a lot,” he said. “I've played for cash game pots the size of first place. But, this feels bigger because of the stage and the bracelet. It's more meaningful.”
Galfond defeated a very tough final table, including Nick Schulman, who has won the event twice (2009 & 2012)
Final Table Results
|1||Phil Galfond||New York, NY||$224,383|
|2||Nick Schulman||New York, NY||$138,665|
|3||Dan Smith||Las Vegas, NV||$87,898|
|4||Erik Seidel||Henderson, NV||$59,532|
|5||Jon Turner||Henderson, NV||$42,298|
|6||Eli Elezra||Henderson, NV||$31,463|
Galfond said that he was fortunate to run well in overcoming a 3-1 chip deficit. On the final hand of the tournament, with blinds at 12,000/24,000, Galfond made it 50,000 from the button. Schulman jammed for 649,000, and Galfond called. Both players drew, with Galfond revealing an . Schulman had an inferior draw with , and Galfond peeled a to leave Schulman drawing dead.
Galfond said he is more focused on tournaments this summer than he has been in the past, when he waffled between playing cash and chasing bracelets. With two final tables already this summer – Galfond finished fourth in the 2-7 Triple Draw Championship for $89,939 – that focus looks to be paying off handsomely.
Moorman, "ElkY" & Esfandiari Among Final 21 in Event #30: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em
Event #39: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em originally began with 2,150 runners – which created a $1,935,900 prize pool – but on Day 2 only 235 returned looking to make the money by finishing in the top 216. After 10 levels of play, the field was whittled down to the final 21 with Kai Yang and his stack of 1.35 million best positioned to make a run at the $353,391 first-place prize.
Others still in contention include Chris Moorman (966,000), Franco Ivan Luca (651,000), Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier (471,000), Jason Koon (299,000), and Antonio Esfandiari (249,000).
Top 10 Day 2 Chip Counts
|1||Kai Yang||Plano, TX||1,350,000|
|2||Artur Rudziankov||Brooklyn, NY||1,090,000|
|3||Chris Moorman||Benfleet, UK||966,000|
|4||David Chase||Alameda, CA||954,000|
|5||Koray Aldemir||Vienna, Austria||699,000|
|6||Franco Ivan Luca||Purta Alta, Italy||651,000|
|7||Travis Case||Los Angeles, CA||577,000|
|8||Omri Sabach||Tel Aviv, Israel||538,000|
|9||Robert Corcione||Bellingham, MA||535,000|
Among those to fall on Day 2 were Shannon Shorr (178th - $1,974), Shaun Deeb (130th - $2,410), Barry Shulman (96th - $2,710), Fedor Holz (59th - $4,917), Brandon Cantu (39th - $7,046), Kathy Liebert (33rd - $8,517), and start-of-the-day chip leader Chris Hinchcliffe (27th - $10,434).
The third and final day of play will kick off at 1:00 p.m. local time Tuesday. Be sure to check back tomorrow to see who captures the gold.
Blast from the Past Michael Gracz Leads Event #31: $3,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better
Day 2 of Event #31: $3,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo played out on Monday with 134 runners beginning the day and just 17 advancing to Day 3. Bracelet winner and World Poker Tour champion Michael Gracz has returned to the WSOP in force after some time away from the game, and he bagged the top stack with 901,000.
Top 5 Day 2 Chip Counts
Other notables making it through included Jeff Madsen (651,000), David “ODB” Baker (469,000), Rami Boukai (371,000), Robert Mizrachi (291,000), Josh Pollock (284,000), Eric Wasserson (227,000), and John Reading (24,000). Blinds will begin at 6,000/12,000 on Day 3.
Play hit the money just before the dinner break, with 54 spots paid. Viatcheslav Ortynskiy (54th place), Fabrice Soulier (52nd), Ben Yu (49th), Stuart Rutter (48th) John Monnette (47th), Eoghan O'Dea (45th), Jeremy Ausmus (42nd), Doug Polk (37th), Tom Schneider (31st), Brandon Shack-Harris (26th), Mike Watson (23rd), Jonathan Duhamel (19th), and Taylor Paur (18th) were among those paid for their efforts.
Play resumes for Day 3, scheduled to be the final one of the tournament, at 2 p.m. on Tuesday with $301,413 to play for up top.
Simon Deadman Tops the Leaderboard on Day 1 of Event #32: $5,000 NLH Six-Handed
Event #32: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Six-Handed attracted 550 entries and created a prize pool of 2,585,000. That will be distributed to the top 60 players, who'll be guaranteed a $8,892 payday, with $633,357 reserved for the winner. By the end of the night, only 190 remained with Simon Deadman and his stack of 232,100 leading the way.
Others who punched their ticket to Day 2 were Tuan Le (225,000), Jennifer Tilly (195,400), Sorel Mizzi (142,400), Jean Montury (120,000), Jason Somerville (93,000), and Phil Hellmuth (63,100).
Of course not everyone was so fortunate. Among those to fall on Day 1 were Brian Hastings, Greg Merson, Ryan Riess, Phil Galfond, Liv Boeree, Martin Jacobson, and Connor Drinan.
Top 10 Day 1 Chip Counts
|1||Simon Deadman||Nottingham, GB||232,100|
|2||Alberto Fonseca||Moravia, CR||226,300|
|3||Tuan Le||Los Angeles, CA||225,000|
|4||Niklas Astedt||Goteborg, SE||208,000|
|5||Jennifer Tilly||Sherman Oaks, CA||195,400|
|6||Kazuhiko Yotsushika||Tokyo, JP||175,900|
|7||Chris Hunichen||Columbia, SC||169,200|
|8||Adam Bilzerian||Tampa, FL||167,800|
|9||Daniel Strelitz||Torrance, CA||167,000|
|10||Scott Baumstein||New York, NY||158,600|
Day 2 of Event #32: $5,000 NLH Six-Handed will kick off at 1 p.m. local time on Tuesday.
Former Main Event Champ Raymer Leads Event #33
After one day of play, 123 of 388 entrants survived in Event #33: $1,500 Limit 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball, and at the top of the counts sits a name recognizable to even those only vaguely familiar with the poker world — 2004 WSOP Main Event champ Greg Raymer. “Fossilman” bagged 71,400 at night's end.
Other notable players to make it through included second-place Sergey Rybachenko (62,700), Brian Yoon (55,300), Jon “PearlJammer” Turner (49,200), Brian Hastings (49,100), Allen Cunningham (41,000), Vanessa Selbst (38,200), Todd Brunson (35,800), and Phil Galfond (22,400), who had won a bracelet earlier in the day.
Defending champ Todd Bui, Marco Johnson, Shaun Deeb, and Chris Tryba were among the players failing to make it through.
Play resumes at 2 p.m. on Tuesday with another 10-level grind, beginning at limits of 800/1,600.
Two new tournaments – Event #36: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha and Event #37: $10,000 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold'em Championship – will kick off on Tuesday at 12:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. respectively.