World Series of Poker Europe NAPT Los Angeles Day 1b: The Canadians Are Coming

Daniel Negreanu

Day 1b of the North American Poker Tour Los Angeles is in the books after a groundhog day of nine levels. An additional 373 players added their names to the registration list by the time the window closed today to bring the total field up to a respectable 701 for the tour's inaugural stop in the City of Angels. When the clock ticked down to double zero, Kim Frederiksen was the man with the most chips in his bag to lead the field after one lap.
The Bicycle Casino is decked out in PokerStars regalia this week, and the Team Pros were out en masse. Nacho Barbero made the trip from South America to try his hand at the NAPT, but thus far, it has not been as kind to him as its South American cousin, the LAPT. Barbero was one of the first to walk back out the door he came in, and Brazilian F1 driver Gualter Salles was red flagged just a few hours into the race as well. Also failing to survive the day were their French teammates Bertrand “ElkY” Grospellier and Vanessa Rousso.
Things went a little better for the North American pros, however. A quartet of Canadians chose Day 1b, and all four of them are still in contention at night's end. Greg DeBora leads his countrymen on the scoreboard, but Marcello del Grosso, Anh Van Nguyen, and Daniel Negreanu (70,200) are right there with him. Joe Cada was recently freed of the “Reigning WSOP Champion” title, and he enjoyed a quick rise to the top of the leaderboard this afternoon. His final few trends were downward, but he still bagged up 78,900 chips to take into Sunday.
The chip lead was a greased pig today and nobody could seem to wrangle it for very long. Mike Sowers was one of the first to flirt with the 200,000-chip mark (eventually bagging up 151,400), and the ever-present Tom Marchese is also up near the top of the board with 134,000. Michael Binger (141,800) also held the chip lead at one point after flopping the nuts with jack-ten and winning a four-way all in. Among the players returning for Day 2 are, Mike Leah, Adam Junglen, Kathy Liebert, Phil Laak, Faraz Jaka, Dwyte Pilgrim, Allen Kessler, Frank Kassela.
The lead changed hands several times even during the last orbit, and Hafiz Khan was the one of the final beneficiaries of the late-day shenanigans. Khan's stack ballooned to chip-leading status when a {6-Diamonds} {5-Diamonds} {A-Diamonds} flop drove some serious action in the final minutes. The turn {3-Hearts} and river {10-Spades} ended up generating a pot of more than 210,000 chips, and Khan shoved the river with {3-Diamonds} {4-Diamonds}. His opponent snap-called, but his cards are a mystery as he mucked them upon seeing the flush. That pot brought Khan all the way up over 200,000, but Kim Frederiksen's 237,000 has him just pipped as Day 1 concludes.
Onward we go to Day 2, and the tables will welcome back just over 300 players for the push toward the money. We're scheduled for seven levels, and our Live Reporting team has a front-row seat for all of the action. Play recommences at the sleep-friendly hour of 1:00 p.m. local time.
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