2016 WSOP Day 18: Three Bracelets Won, and Mercier Bags Another Pile

Benny Glaser

Day 18 of the 2016 World Series of Poker saw the quick conclusion of one event, while two more bracelets were shipped in the wee hours of the morning. The Summer of Mercier also continued, as he's looking like a major threat to add a third bracelet to his summer trappings after a successful Day 1.

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More For Mercier?

Who can stop Jason Mercier?

He's at it again in Event #30: $3,000 Six-Max Pot-Limit Omaha, the 3 p.m. event from Saturday. Mercier grabbed a chip lead early on in the day, according to the live updates, and though that slipped away from him, he still put a very healthy 95,200 in a bag. That's good for 36th among the 119 runners who still have a pulse in the event.

The tournament drew 580 in total, and Randy Ohel finished the night with a sizable chip lead at 273,200. Next best is Nick Schwarmann at 228,200 and then Sean Winter with 207,400. Other players making the Day 1 cut included Mike Watson (141,000), Max Silver (88,700), Dzmitry Urbanovich (59,900), and Daniel Negreanu (59,100). The latter two were seated next to each other for much of the evening.

The tournament resumes at 2 p.m., and expect the money bubble to burst a few hours in — 87 will be paid.

Regulated U.S. Site Grinder Gagliano Gets Gold

Michael Gagliano's name can regularly be found in PokerNews' weekly rundowns of the big tournaments in the regulated U.S. market of New Jersey. Late Saturday night, he won a little bit of a more prestigious prize, capturing WSOP gold in Event #25: $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em.

It's not easy to make a living grinding on sites with limited liquidity, by Gagliano manages it by putting in 50+ hours a week, and now his bankroll's a little fatter after shipping $448,463 for besting the 1,045-player field.

In doing so, Gagliano shipped the very event he final tabled in 2012, when he got seventh for $83,428. He nearly did a bit worse this time around, getting all in with sixes against nines with nine players left for his tournament life and hitting a four-flush to double up. That pot, among others, made it a good thing Gagliano's mom wasn't awake to sweat the results.

"She gets very nervous, so it's probably better that there was no live stream so she couldn't watch," he said.

Other notable finishers at the final table included Shankar Pillai (third), Niall Farrell (sixth), and Darryll Fish (eighth).

1Michael GaglianoRockaway, NJ$448,463
2Daniel CookeParker, TX$277,128
3Shankar PillaiCommack, NY$196,119
4Remi CastaignonLadeveze, France$140,596
5Zu ZhouTemple City, CA$102,120
6Niall FarrellLugar Agrshin, U.K.$75,164
7Michael LaakePunta Gorda, FL$56,073
8Darryll FishLas Vegas, NV$42,405
9Gavin O'RourkePortlaoise, Ireland$32,514

Glaser Continues Hot Start with Omaha Bracelet

England's Benny Glaser grabbed a bracelet last year and has added another after winning Event #26: $1,500 Omaha Hi-Low, the other tournament that ended late Saturday night. Glaser topped 934 players for $244,103. He's off to quite a nice start at the 2016 WSOP as this comes in addition to a fifth in the $10,000 2-7 Single Draw Championship ($62,810) and 12th in the $1,500 2-7 Single Draw ($4,562).

In 2015, Glaser won $1,500 2-7 Triple Draw for $136,215.

This time around, Glaser beat a final table that included Phil Hui (fourth), Brandon Shack-Harris (fifth), and Max Pescatori (8th).

1Benny GlaserSouthampton, U.K.$244,103
2Benjamin GoldLong Beach, CA$150,828
3Motohiro KondoTokyo, Japan$106,070
4Phil HuiSan Antonio, TX$75,627
5Brandon Shack-HarrisChicago, IL$54,680
6Zachary MilchmanDelray Beach, FL$40,098
7Ilya KrupinNovosibirsk, Russia$29,830
8Max PescatoriMilan, Italy$22,517
9Scott PackerSanta Ana, CA$17,250

Garcia Comes Back to Beat Petleshkov in Heads-Up Match

In an event scheduled to conclude Friday, Cesar Garcia of Spain and Viliyan Petleshkov of Bulgaria decided to bag up and return Saturday for a final day of play with blinds at 100,000/200,000/30,000. They had already battled through 76 hands of heads-up play, and Petleshkov opened the day with the lead, 8.17 million to 5.48 million.

However, it wouldn't be his day as Garcia prevailed after just 20 hands. A key hand went down very early with Garcia getting in {5-Diamonds}{3-Clubs} on an {8-Hearts}{5-Clubs}{3-Hearts} flop against the {j-Hearts}{9-Hearts} of Petleshkov. After a jack arrived on the turn, the Bulgarian didn't improve on the river and Garcia vauled into the lead.

He wouldn't relinquish it, and he was holding WSOP gold for the cameras just a half hour later.

"For me, this is a dream," he told Nolan Dalla of the WSOP after the win. "It's the most important thing you can do in the poker world.

1Cesar GarciaCanary Island, Spain$447,739
2Viliyan PetleshkovBulgaria$276,660
3Yuriy BoykoIreland$198,185
4Adrian BuckleyWestminster, CO$143,598
5Kamel MokhammadZaporzhzhia, Ukraine$105,253
6Craig McCorkellWest Sussex, UK$78,053
7Craig VarnellFort Collins, CO$58,569
8Thiago NishijimaSao Paulo, Brazil 
9Anthony SpinellaLas Vegas, NV$34,188

Johns Seeking Second Bracelet of 2016 as 10 Bag Limit Championship

Ian Johns has already added a second gold bracelet to his collection this year after winning $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. for $212,604, and he's looking for another, his third overall, with 10 players remaining in the $10,000 Limit Hold'em Championship. Johns is a limit hold'em specialist who plays it in cash games for a living, but he's proven he's quite proficient in a tournament environment as well.

Johns will return Sunday with 800,000, trailing only the 1.047 million of software engineer Jeff Thompson. Others in contention include Brian Rast, David Chiu, and Bill Chen.

The tournament reached the money on Day 2 with Mark Radoja, Georgios Sotiropoulos, and Ronnie Bardah cashing.

The last 10 runners battle it out for the bracelet and $290,635 starting at 2 p.m.

Jeff Thompson1,047,000
Ian Johns800,000
Brian Rast731,000
Alexander Balynskiy700,000
David Chiu554,000
Sean Berrios507,000
Bill Chen411,000
Anh Van Nguyen378,000
Brock Parker284,000
Philip Tom90,000

Monster Seniors Field Down to 57

Always one of the highlights of the WSOP in terms of sheer numbers, the Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship has been whittled from 4,499 to just 57 after two days of play.

At the time of writing, full chip counts had not yet been posted by WSOP staff, but Paul Runge is the chip leader at the moment with 1.24 million, followed closely by Robert Musser (1.215 million).

A huge swath of players made their way to payouts over the course of play, with WSOP staff having to set up a line out into the Rio hallways to accommodate all of the players. They included Stan Jablonski, John Gale, Everett Carlton, former Main Event champ Robert Varkonyi, and seven-time bracelet winner Billy Baxter.

The remaining players return Sunday at 11 a.m. and are scheduled to play to a winner, though whether that will happen is an open question.

Event #29 Gets Underway with 274 Surviving

The 11 a.m. event was Event #29: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em, and 274 of 1,796 players made it through the day with chips.

Alexander Ziskin is in the lead with 170,400, while David Vamplew (147,300), Timothy Ulmer (130,000), Tony Ruberto (128,000), and Matt Reed (120,100) also bagged big. Others who will be sitting in for Sunday's Day 2, which kicks off at noon, include actor James Woods, Matt Stout, Shawn Buchanan, Chad Holloway, Matt Berkey, and Max Steinberg.

Just four players who begin Day 2 will finish outside the money as 274 will be paid, so expect the bubble to burst almost immediately upon the start of play.

What's on Tap

Day 19 of the 2016 WSOP will see two events kick off: $1,000 Super Seniors No-Limit Hold'em and $10,000 Omaha Hi-Low Championship. The former event begins at 10 a.m. and is open to players 65 years of age and older. The latter kicks off at 3 p.m.

As the 2016 WSOP rolls on, be sure to stay tuned to PokerNews for continued coverage, brought to you by our sponsors, 888poker.

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  • Day 18 of the 2016 WSOP saw three bracelets awarded and another successful day for Jason Mercier.

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