We've had some major fireworks on just the third hand of the day.
It happened when Dan Shak opened for 100,000 from early position with and received a call Greg Jensen, who held right behind. Seiver was next to act and looked down at and took his time before putting out a three-bet to 275,000. Action folded back around, both Shak and Jensen called, and the flop came down .
Surprisingly, Shak moved all in for 500,000, and after tanking for a couple minutes, Jensen shoved all in over the top. Seiver couldn't call off his last 565,000 fast enough and he was the favorite to triple. That's exactly what he did when the peeled off on the turn to fill him up, which left both Shak and Jensen drawing dead headed to the river. Shak followed up last year's runner-up finish with another final table appearance, while Jensen's stack was cut in half.
"Honestly it's much, much better than the start I envisioned," Seiver said after the hand with a smile.
David Sands enters the final table with a massive chip lead, commanding 45 percent of the chips in play. The American has over $3 million in career live tournament earnings, and his largest score came in 2012 when he finished 2nd in the WPT L.A. Poker Classic Main Event ($806,370). He also finished runner-up in a $100,000 Super High Roller at the Bellagio, earning $664,027.
In 2011, Sands made a deep run in the World Series of Poker Main Event, finishing 30th ($242,636), and final tabled the €25,000 High Roller at the EPT Grand Final ($200,371).
With nearly half of the chips in play, Sands has to be considered the favorite to win this event, but there are certainly a handful of tough competitors separating him from the trophy.
While technically an amateur, Cary Katz, who is in his early 40s and resides in Las Vegas, is no stranger to poker. He's regularly played in the world's highest buy-in events, including this summer's $1 million buy-in Big One For One Drop at the World Series of Poker.
Katz, who is married with six children, is the Chief Executive Officer of the seventh- largest student loan company in the United States, the College Loan Corporation (CLC), which has helped more than 800,000 students by providing them with over $19 billion in college loans since it was founded in 1999. He is also the acting chairman of a Stop Child Predators, nonprofit organization founded to help protect children and hold their victimizers accountable.
Katz, who has a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from the University of Georgia, has $831,047 in career earnings, though his biggest score was just $51,713 for a 12th-place finish in a 2011 WSOP $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Event.
German Philipp Gruissem, who ranks 14th in the Global Poker Index, enters the final table third in chips, but perhaps first in high roller résumé. In 2011, Gruissem won two high rollers on the European Poker Tour (EPT Barcelona and EPT London), earning a combined $1,041,495. He also finished 28th in the Main Event that year, earning $242,636.
Gruissem continued to crush in 2012, final tabling the WPT Grand Prix de Paris, the WSOPE €50,000 Majestic High Roller, and finishing tenth in the Macau High Stakes Challenge Super High Roller.
Over the past two years, Gruissem has earned over $3.3 million. He has an opportunity to add $2 million more to that total today.
Russia's Vladimir Troyanovsky is a veteran of high roller events, and though you might not guess it, he's a hardcore player of World of Warcraft. Needless to say, he's quite the gamer.
Troyanovsky travels the world playing in tournaments of all sizes, and he recently took one down. It happened back in April at the European Poker Tour Berlin €3,000 No-Limit Hold'em Heads-Up event when he defeated WCOOP runner-up Vojtech Ruzicka in the final round to win €21,600. A total of 16 players competed in that event and created a prize pool of €48,000. Israeli Saar Wilf and German Nima Ahrary came joint third for €6,000; Ruzicka for €14,400 for second.
While Troyanovsky has an EPT win on his résumé, some would say he's overdue for some high roller success. He just might find it today, but he'll have to overcome the short stack to do it.
Scott Seiver enters the final table sixth in chips, but is one of the most successful players at the table. Seiver boasts over $4.9 million in career live tournament earnings, with his biggest score coming in May of 2011 when he took down the $25,000 WPT Championship Event at the Bellagio, earning over $1.6 million.
Seiver won a World Series of Poker bracelet in 2008, besting David Seidman heads up in a $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em event. Seiver earned $755,891 to go along with the hardware - it is his second-largest live cash to date.
The 2012 PCA was a successful trip for Seiver, who won the $5,000 heads up event ($78,210) and finished fifth in the $5,000 8-Game event ($13,810). Seiver has already earned a profit for his efforts in this Super High Roller, but is gunning for the two million dollar payday and the trophy.
Prior to the start of the $100,000 Super High Roller, the registration list was a laundry list of well-known professionals sprinkled with a few experienced amateurs — with the exception of Greg Jensen. Here was a man that no one in the poker community had heard of. After a little digging, it was revealed that Jensen was a hedge fund manager and the co-CEO and co-CIO for Bridgewater Associates, a firm based in Westport, Connecticut with assets totaling $122 billion.
What's more, Jensen entered the tournament on whim after a colleague of his had gifted him a seat into the $10,000 PCA Main Event. Jensen decided to take a shot in the Super High Roller, and incredibly, he has made it all the way to the final table.