Event #2, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Day 1b saw 1,881 starters take the field, bringing the total number for the event up to a record breaking 3,929 players. Event #2 is now officially the largest WSOP preliminary event in history. The ultimate winner of this event will take home $831,462 and a total of 378 players will increase their bankrolls by the time the bracelet is awarded.
By the end of Day 1b play we were down to 223 players, with David Bach leading the pack with 115,400 chips. Bach will start Day 2 as the event's chip leader.
Like the previous day of play, recreational players claimed the majority of the field. But a greater proportion of pros and celebrities opted for a Day 1b start. Nine-time National Hockey League All-Star Jeremy Roenick was in the field. Also playing were Actor Kevin Hart (The 40-Year-Old Virgin and a couple of the Scary Movie versions) and actor Mekhi Phifer, or Dr. Gregory Pratt to "ER" fans. And while Phil Laak took on Event #1's final table, his girlfriend and actress Jennifer Tilly tackled Event #2's Day 1b.
It was not a banner day for former WSOP Champions. 2007 Champion Jerry Yang nearly went out on one of the first few hands when his flopped trips collided with a flopped boat. Yang temporarily fought back with his short stack, but ultimately succumbed before the first break. 2006 WSOP Champion Jamie Gold has disclosed on television that one of his goals is to become a world class bluffer. Maybe his opponent knew this – or maybe it was his pocket aces that made him call Gold's all-in bet on a flop of . Predictably, Gold's never caught up and he, too, departed before the first break.
1989 WSOP Champion Phil Hellmuth came late and left early; his pocket queens were no match against his opponents A-7 on a flop of A-A-6. In case there was any doubt, another ace came on the river for quads. Pocket queens were also the bane of 1998 WSOP Champion Scotty Nguyen. Nguyen was crippled early in the day when he pushed all in with the ladies on a J-J-3 flop. "Nice hand, baby," he said when his opponent flipped over a K-J. Nguyen couldn't mount a comeback and was out soon after.
1986 WSOP Champion Berry Johnston and 2001 WSOP Champion Carlos Mortensen also failed to survive Day 1b. At the end of the day, 2000 WSOP Champion Chris "Jesus" Ferguson was left standing with 23,400 chips.
It wasn't just a champion's curse as other noted pros had difficulty navigating Day 1b. Dario Minieri was an early casualty when his aces were cracked by pocket sevens, the fatal seven coming on the river. Two-time bracelet winner Scott Clements had the misfortune of flopping a boat against his opponent's flopped quads. And James "Mig.com" Mackey's big slick was no match for Barry Greenstein's pocket aces. Jennifer Harman's pocket nines dominated her opponent's pocket eights until the board four-flushed on the river, sending Harman to the rail.
Allen Cunningham, Dustin "Neverwin" Woolf, Justin Bonomo, Marcel Luske, Andy Black, Anna Wroblewski, Eli Elezra, Michael Mizrachi, Erick Lindgren, John Juanda, Isabelle Mercier, Humberto Brenes, Kirk Morrison, Liz Lieu, David Pham, and Clonie Gowen were also among those eliminated in Day 1b.
Along with chip leader David Bach, Mark Vos, Chris Savage, David Singer, Perry Friedman, Joe Bartholdi, Arnold Spee, Daniel Alaei, Marco Traniello, Mark Gregorich, Erica Schoenberg, Michael Bernstein, and Michael Binger are among those returning for Day 2.
Day 2 is "money day" for Event #2 players, with 448 players taking the field and only 70 players away from the prize pool. Check in on the action with the PokerNews Live Reporting Team.