One Hollywood star had a brief but colourful run in the PokerStars Championship Bahamas Main Event on Day 1a, but another had a quieter, more conventionally successful appearance on Day 1b.
A day after Kevin Hart lit up his table with cheerful talk, but only made his chips last a few hours, Breaking Bad and The Path star Aaron Paul bagged 74,700 chips to make it through to Day 2 of the event. Paul, looking the part of a typical grinder as he donned sunglasses, a beanie, and headphones, traded the occasional banter with his opponents but otherwise focused on chip accumulation. Helped in large part by a key pot against Chino Rheem early on, that strategy proved successful.
The pot in question saw the three-time World Poker Tour champ bet out 1,675 on a board of from the big bind and Paul raise to 4,000. Rheem came back with another raise to 10,000, and Paul called to see a river. Rheem moved all in for about 11,000 and Paul snapped it off.
Rheem feared the worst and asked if Paul had fives full, but the actor showed instead. Rheem uttered a few choice words on his way out the door, flashing for a turned straight when the dealer informed him he was obligated to show.
Another celebrity to bag some chips was former NFL star Richard Seymour. The former New England Patriot and Oakland Raider has plenty of bling already — he collected three Super Bowl rings in his decorated career — but Seymour is looking for his first piece of poker hardware. He made a nice run in a WPT event last month, finishing 18th, and he's drawing live here after making it through Day 1b with 28,000.
Seymour had to survive with a big fold rather than a big hand. He faced off with American circuit grinder Vincent Moscati with a board of between the two. Seymour checked from middle position and Moscati bet about 13,000. That represented almost all of Seymour's chips, and he decided to fold queens face-up. Moscati showed him aces.
Overall, 470 players showed up for Day 1b to push the two-day total to 699. Registration is still open until the beginning of Day 2 on Tuesday, so there's still time for that number to inch upward. About 260 of the runners on Day 1b made it through.
The player who handed the dealer the heaviest bag was James Juvancic, with 271,800 in chips. Others to bag big included Andrew Ryan (224,300), Jan Kralik (164,900), Mattias Priolo (160,800), and PokerStars Team Pro Felipe Ramos (156,800). Mohsin Charania, Sam Chartier, Mukul Pahuja, Maria Ho, and PokerStars Team Pros Vanessa Selbst and Chris Moneymaker also advanced.
Meanwhile, players who hit the rail during the eight levels of play included Jason Wheeler, Faraz Jaka, Jennifer Tilly, Anthony Zinno, Calvin Anderson, Mike Gorodinsky, and Team PokerStars Pros Liv Boeree and Celina Lin.
Day 2 gets underway at noon local time on Tuesday, so come back to PokerNews for more coverage.