As expected, the $10,000 World Championship Stud event drew a world class field totaling 158 players, all vying for the bracelet and a top prize of $ 415,856. Some may be surprised to learn that a young Russian player, Alexander Kostritsyn, ended the day as chip leader. But in many ways Kostritsyn represents the changing demographic in this game.
While stud has had a reputation for being an "old school" game, the growing popularity of H.O.R.S.E. is starting to drive more diversity to the game. That being said, this pricey event drew an abundance of old-school pros and stud specialists. It would be hard to imagine a championship stud field that didn't include legacy players such Cyndy Violette, Archie Karas, Alan Boston, Scotty Nguyen, Maureen Feduniak, Allen Kessler, Mickey Appleman, Barbara Lewis or David Grey.
And today's event predictably drew mixed-game specialists as well, including Doyle Brunson, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Harman, Minh Ly, Daniel Negreanu, Ted Forrest, Eli Elezra, Phil Ivey, Alex Kravchenko, and David Benyamine. But this prestigious event still drew its fair share of younger players such as Alexander Kostritsyn, Justin Bonomo, Dario Minieri and Nick Shulman.
Much like the previous $10,000 Mixed Event, the field spent a good deal of the day kibitzing and negotiating prop bets. After overhearing Ted Forrest and Barry Greenstein discuss the Matusow weight-loss bet, Greg Raymer proposed a bet that would involve guessing his weight. The negotiations for this prop bet continued throughout much of the afternoon. At one point the amount of clothing Raymer would wear at weigh-in was discussed; Raymer was only willing to take off his hat and shoes. Forrest quickly retorted, "Yeah that's fine, we don't need to see you naked!" Raymer would get his revenge for the comment by eliminating Forrest later in the day.
Forrest, of course, was not the only elimination as the day eventually whittled the field down to just 80 players. At about the two-hour mark, David Bach announced, "I was one of the chip leaders in the first couple of events, and now I am the first one out." John Hennigan was also an early casualty. And Ted Lawson found no traction on Day 1, complaining that Archie Karas rivered him three times. Both David Grey and Jeffrey Lisandro also lost bids for their second WSOP stud bracelets on Day 1.
After Phil Hellmuth was eliminated at the hands of Minh Ly, Hellmuth quipped to Doyle Brunson, "Don't worry Doyle, I'll be back tomorrow at 12 to play in the ladies event!" And LA Lakers owner Jerry Buss departed, but only after assuring a number of players with action on the game that the Lakers would indeed win. Marcel Luske, Howard Lederer, Barry Greenstein, Jennifer Harman, Andy Black, Justin Bonomo, Thor Hansen, Rob Hollink, and Michael Mizrachi also failed to navigate their way to Day Two.
Both Daniel Negreanu and Chad Brown had midday surges that propelled them to the top of the leader board. And when they return for Day 2, Cyndy Violette, Erik Seidel, Greg Raymer, Phil Ivey, Barbara Lewis, Andy Bloch, Scotty Nguyen, Shannon Elizabeth, Annie Duke, and Nick Shulman will be among those waiting for them. Check back with the PokerNews Live Reporting Team at 3pm PDT for all the Day 2 action.
The top ten chip counts after Day 1:
Alexande Kostritsyn 121,100
Barry Mullinax 103,300
Michael Fiorito 101,900
Chad Brown 89,100
Daniel Negreanu 79,700
Ralph Perry 76,100
Cyndi Violette 70,300
Vassilios Lazarou 69,400
Thomas Weideman 62,100
Eric Brooks 62,100