Day 2 was bubble day for Event #36, $2,000 No-Limit Hold’em. 213 players returned to the Rio for a shot at one of 171 paying slots and a chance at the coveted gold bracelet. Among those returning for Day 2 were Eugene Todd, David “Chino” Rheem, Tony Ma, Jared “TheWacoKidd” Hamby and Michael Binger. When play ended for the day, there were just 17 survivors still in the field, with Steven Tabb as the lone player above the million-chip mark with 1,086,000. Andrew Seden finished in second, just shy of seven figures with 995,000, and Warren Woodall ended in third with 881,000. Day 1 chip leader Corwin Cole slipped in the last few levels but finished Day 2 in the middle of the pack.
Bubble time was just a few eliminations away when play began, and it didn’t take long to get there. In an unusual turn of events, two players were ousted during the same hand during hand-for-hand play, so Balazs Botond and Chance Kornuth split the bottom payout, both receiving $2,005 instead of nothing. But when the bubble burst, the floodgates opened and the eliminations poured forth. Among the early post-bubble bust-outs we saw were Darus Suharto, Jared Hamby, Liya Gerasimova, and Shaun Deeb.
Rob Hollink got the last pieces of his chip stack into the middle with and Jonathan Plens made the easy call with . One ace on the flop and another on the river, and Hollink was done. Michael Binger ran pocket kings into Cory Burbick’s pocket aces, and his tournament was over. Eugene Todd “Bro” turned a straight but lost to a rivered flush to find himself crippled. Todd then shipped in the last of his chips with . He got one caller, who showed , and when the board missed both players, Todd was done just before the dinner break.
The steady diet of eliminations continued after dinner, as Tony Ma, Dustin Dirksen, and Chino Rheem all fell soon after the dinner break. Rheem started the day among the chip leaders, but rode a roller-coaster throughout Day 2 before finally busting at the hands of Joe McGowan. Rheem moved all in preflop with and was in trouble when McGowan called with . No help on the board for Rheem, and he was done in 80th place ($6,262).
As the night wore on and the field got smaller, the remaining players could almost smell the gold of the WSOP bracelet in the air. Jordan Rich’s quest for his first bracelet came to an end when he called Warren Woodall’s river bet on the board of . Rich called all in, then snap-mucked his cards as Woodall tabled pocket eights for the flopped boat. Rich picked up $15,270 for 25th place. Woodall finished the day with one of the top chip stacks on the strength of his late push.
After Andrew White took out both Joe Cutler (19th, $15,270) and Robert Mazzie (20th, $15,270) in one big hand, play consolidated to two tables for the last few hands of Day 2. Ken Yates was the final victim of Day 2, picking up $21,008 just moments before play ended for the night when he was eliminated in 18th place.
As the witching hour descended upon the Rio once more, the remaining 17 players bagged their chips and headed off to bed, with visions of sugarplums and gold bracelets dancing in their heads. Join PokerNews at 1PM for all the live updates as the remaining 17 players make their way to a final table and the coveted WSOP bracelet.