The 2012 poker season unofficially kicked off in the Bahamas Thursday with the 2012 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. The Atlantis Resort and Casino on Paradise Island is once again host to the PCA festivities, now in its ninth year.
Leading off the docket was the $100,000 Super High Roller. A field of 30 paid the six figures and after two players opted to re-enter, an official 32 entries created a prize pool of $3,136,000 and a first-place prize of $1,254,400. Isaac Haxton is on top of the counts after eight levels on Day 1, leading the way with 1,240,000.
Haxton jumped out of the gate fast and took the early chip lead during Level 2. The blinds were 1,200/2,400 with a 300 ante and Viktor "Isildur1" Blom started the action with a raise to 2,600 from the hijack. Haxton, in the small blind, three-bet to 10,500, but Jonathan Duhamel four-bet to 24,200 from the big blind. Blom ducked out of the way, but Haxton had other plans and five-bet to 42,200. Duhamel six-bet all-in for about 205,000 and was met with a call from Haxton, who was holding to Duhamel's . The board came down , giving the pot to Haxton and sending Duhamel to the re-entry desk.
Haxton further increased his stack toward the end of Day 1 when he eliminated Justin Smith. From the hijack, Smith made it 10,000 to play at the 2,000/4,000/500 level. Haxton three-bet to 30,000 from the small blind and Smith four-bet shoved for about 246,000. Haxton was quick to call with , having plenty of chips to spare. Smith tabled , but found no help from the board. That hand gave Haxton about 930,000 before he ultimately ended the day with 1,240,000.
Leading the way for Team PokerStars Pro are the aforementioned Blom (875,000) and Duhamel (729,000) sitting in second and fourth, respectively. To nobody's surprise, high-roller studs Erik Seidel (753,000) and Jason Mercier (514,000) had excellent starts to their tournaments as well. Others returning on Day 2 include Mike "Timex" McDonald (577,000), reigning PCA Main Event Champion Galen Hall (380,000), Scott Seiver (365,000), and Daniel Negreanu (346,000).
Among those who will not be returning on Day 2 is defending Super High Roller champion Eugene Katchalov. In a heads-up pot against Yevgeniy Timoshenko, Katchalov was faced with a decision after Timoshenko four-bet all-in with the bigger stack. Katchalov called for his tournament life with , but trailed Timoshenko's . A board ended Katchalov's day, guaranteeing a new champion would emerge.
Also failing to make it through Day 1 were Matt Glantz, Shawn Buchanan, Philipp Gruissem, David Benefield, Terje Augdal, Alexey Repik, Bill Perkins (twice), Sandor Demjan and Masa Kagawa.
Here is the Day 2 table and seat draw:
|1||5||Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier||112,000|
|1||8||Viktor "Isildur1" Blom||875,000|
Play resumes at 1200 EST (1700 GMT) Friday, so be sure to keep it here at PokerNews for all of the exciting action as we will be providing live coverage throughout the $100,000 Super High Roller, Main Event, and $25,000 High Roller.