The 2016 World Series of Poker continued with five events on Saturday, including two bracelets awarded. Meanwhile, the $1,500 8-Game event saw just 11 make it through with a well-known player in the lead. The only new event getting going was the $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Single Draw Championship, and the player drawing headlines there was none other than Howard Lederer.
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Ryan LaPlante Bests Record PLO Field of 2,483
Event #12: $565 Pot-Limit Omaha made what WSOP brass called a successful debut with 2,483 entries, and it was Minnesota's Ryan LaPlante emerging atop the mammoth field for a $190,328 pay day.
“If this is the first record I'll have, I'm excited try to get as many more as possible,” he said of the distinction he will likely hold for at least another year.
LaPlante admitted he doesn't play much PLO, but that didn't seem to slow him down, and he drew on a wealth of experience playing pot-limit Omaha hi-low online. He said he considers himself likely one of the better tournament players in the world in that format.
After the win, he got emotional and needed a moment to gather himself when asked by a member of the media what the win meant to him.
“I decided at a pretty young age, I was going to do what I loved for a living and not really care about the money,” he said. “To get something like this when I've been working so hard for it for so long, it's absolutely incredible.”
Final Table Results
|1||Ryan LaPlante||Brainerd, MN||$190,328|
|2||Sean Shah||Delray Beach, FL||$117,531|
|3||Tesfaldet Tekle||Tukwila, WA||$85,870|
|4||Richard St. Peter||Susonville, CA||$63,304|
|5||Charles Coultas||Seattle, WA||$47,092|
|6||Adil Khan||Coral Springs, FL||$35,353|
|7||Matt Livingston||North Las Vegas, NV||$26,786|
|8||Darryll Fish||Las Vegas, NV||$20,484|
|9||Grant Ellis||Whitby, Canada||$15,813|
Porter Ships Second Razz Bracelet, Third Overall
Rep Porter took down Event #15: $1,500 Razz for $142,624, notching his third gold WSOP bracelet in the process. Meanwhile, Daniel Negreanu finished fourth for $42,030, as the Las Vegas drought for “Kid Poker” that has been ongoing since 2008 continues.
Porter has seven top-10 finishes since he took down $2,500 Razz in 2011 for $210,615. He also narrowly missed a November Nine appearance in 2013, when he finished 12th in the Main Event for $573,204, still the biggest score he's had.
This time, Porter had to beat out a final table that included not only Negreanu but Shaun Deeb, Matt Grapenthien, David Benyamine, and two-time bracelet winner Michael Gathy, whom Porter bested heads up.
“They just dealt me a lot of low cards today,” Porter said with a laugh. “Poker's easy when they deal you a lot of low cards. I successfully bluffed one or two big pots that were important. The cards fall a little bit different, it's someone else standing there.”
Final Table Results
|1||Rep Porter||Woodinville, WA||$142,624|
|2||Michael Gathy||Brussels, Belgium||$88,146|
|4||Daniel Negreanu||Toronto, Canada||$42,030|
|5||Brendan Taylor||Pasadena, CA||$29,846|
|6||Valentin Vornicu||San Diego, CA||$21,604|
|7||Daniel Weinman||Atlanta, GA||$15,945|
|8||Shaun Deeb||Las Vegas, NV||$12,006|
Volpe Seeking Second Bracelet as 11 Bag 8-Game
Paul Volpe has been one of the most successful players at the WSOP in recent years, with over $1.3 million in cashes and a number of final tables dating to 2009. He's in prime position to win his second bracelet after bagging the chip lead with 11 left in Event #15: $1,500 8-Game.
Volpe has 586,500 in chips with things set to move to Level 21, which features limits of 12,000/24,000 and blinds of 3,00/6,000 in big-bet games.
Volpe got lucky in a big PLO pot against Aussie legend David Steicke to send him packing in 13th. The two got it in on a flop with Steicke holding and Volpe holding at least – his other cards went uncaptured by the reporting team. A river sent the pot to the Pennsylvania native.
Day 2 began with 107 runners and 74 places paid. Some of those who busted in the money along with Steicke: David “ODB” Baker (14th), Brandon Cantu (16th), Jason Somerville (24th), and Jason Mercier (35th),
Some of Volpe's competition on Day 3, which will play down to a winner starting at 2 p.m., includes Tony Lazar (558,000), Ben Ludlow (415,000), Gavin Smith (247,000), and Chris Klodnicki (175,500).
Millionaire Maker Draws 7,190, Money Bubble Near
Always a marquee event on the WSOP schedule, the Millionaire Maker saw Day 1b wrap up with 4,102 entries, pushing the two-flight total to 7,190. That's just a hair beneath last year's total of 7,275.
However, the real story of the day was the odd setup for the payouts. With WSOP brass guaranteeing at least $1 million for both first and second places, the payout structure ended up looking similar to a satellite at the top. The winner will get $1,065,403, the runner-up receives $1 million, and third place will pay out “only” $500,000.
Shalev Halfa was the Day 1b chip leader with 250,700. Others bagging big included 2016 bracelet winner Peter Eichhardt (157,400), Matt Shepsky (151,300), Matt Affleck (141,200), and Adam “Roothlus” Levy (135,800).
The 667 who made it through Day 1b will combine Sunday morning with the survivors of Day 1a to make it a 1,172-player field. A point of emphasis for the WSOP this year was to reach the money a bit earlier, and that should be happening nearly right of the bat on Sunday since 1,079 will be paid.
Lederer Returns, Bags Under Starting Stack in 2-7 Championship
The $10,000 2-7 Single Draw Championship is rarely an event that draws a lot of attention, but the eyes of the poker world were drawn to it as Howard Lederer made his return to the WSOP. He took a seat late in Level 4 and silently played out a few hands before break, when he declined an interview request from PokerNews.
Lederer did manage to make it through Day 1 as one of 34 survivors, albeit with less than a starting stack. He bagged 20,300, ahead of only Stuart Rutter's 6,900. The new single re-entry format drew 100 runners.
Meanwhile, Alex Luneau (454,000) bagged the chip lead. Mike Matusow (367,600), George Danzer (313,800), Brian Hastings (290,600), and Herezel Zalewski (204,800) round out the top five.
Things resume at 2 p.m. Sunday.
What's On Tap?
The Millionaire Maker flights will combine for Day 2 on Sunday, and a bracelet will be awarded in the 8-game. The 2-7 Championship is scheduled to play 10 levels, and it's possible a final table or even a champion could be determined.
Two events get underway: Event #17: $1,000 No Limit Hold'em at 11 a.m. and Event #18: $3,000 H.O.R.S.E. at 3 p.m.
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