Day 1 Completed
Day 1 Completed
The first day of the inaugural Epic Poker League Main Event has been completed after six 90-minute levels of play on Day 1. With registration open until the fifth level of the day, the entrant list grew to a size of 137 players for this $20,000 rake-free, $400,000-added Main Event. At the end of the day, 63 players remained with Eugene Katchalov leading the charge. Katchalov bagged up an impressive 356,300 in chips to finish atop the leader board of this stacked, elite field.
Once you stepped foot in the Palms Resort Casino and laid your eyes on the Epic Poker League banners scattered around the building, a buzz came over you and you realized what was in store for you; the best event with the best players providing some of the best poker the world has ever seen. And let us tell you, we were here on the floor and saw it all first hand. This was one of the greatest tournament fields ever produced and the event was amazing. With nearly $1 million up for grabs for first place and possibly much more given the league championship event, the best players in the world brought out their A-games.
Players such as Phil Hellmuth, Barry Greenstein, Joe Tehan, Vanessa Rousso, Eric Baldwin, David "Bakes" Baker, Andrew Lichtenberger, JC Tran, Scott Clements, Chris Moorman, Joseph Cheong, Michael Mizrachi and Yevgeniy Timoshenko were all in the mix today for some period of time. Unfortunately for them, they all failed to make it through the day and will have to wait until the next EPL event in early September to try again.
Tran went out at the hands of Daniel Alaei, Hellmuth was dropped by Carlos Mortensen and Moorman fell to Shawn Buchanan. On Moorman's bustout hand, he put the last of his money in on the board with the . Only to be outdone, Moorman's hand was bested by the for Buchanan. After the river landed with the , Moorman was sent packing. Not every bustout can be taken so easily though, as Randy Dorfman found out later on in the day.
Dorfman was all in on the turn with the board reading and he held the best of it. Dorfman's was up against the lesser two pair for Chino Rheem, who held the . A dagger in the form of the fell on the river to deliver a brutal blow to Dorfman and end his tournament abruptly in the fifth level of play.
On the other side of the coin, plenty of big names still remain and will be back for Day 2. Ben Lamb, McLean Karr, Sorel Mizzi, Isaac Baron, Amit Makhija, Justin Bonomo, Dan O'Brien, Sam Stein and Jason Mercier all had solid days on the felt and have advanced. They'll join the pack tomorrow at 12:00 PM local time to continue the quest.
What's at the end of the journey? For the top 18 finishers, it will be a piece of the $3,085,200 prize pool. The lion's share of that will be awarded to the winner, who will walk away with a whopping $982,660. Just squeaking into the money will earn each player $43,190. One important thing about the EPL is that every dollar counts, as the EPL Championship event that takes place February 13-14, 2012 is a $1,000,000 freeroll for the top 27 money earners from the four main events. In that event, the top six will be paid and $500,000 will be handed to the champion.
As mentioned previously, tomorrow's Day 2 will kick off at noon local time here in Las Vegas at the Palms Resort Casino. PokerNews will be live from the floor once again to bring you all the coverage you can handle and you won't want to miss it. Why? Because it's going to be epic of course!
We'll see you then.
Ben Lamb was able to get Andy Bloch to call off his remaining chips on the river of a board. Lamb tabled and Bloch couldn't beat it.
While Bloch hits the rail, Lamb has chipped up to 235,000.
Gavin Smith found himself in amazing shape when his was able to get it all in against the of Kyle Gowker. The board ran out and Smith was able to get his crutuial double up. He now sits with 178,000.
As we near the end of Day 1, Jeff Papola has added himself to this list of players that will not make it to Day 2.
He got his final 20,000 or so chips all in with against the of Erik Seidel. The board ran out an uneventful . Papola was forced to pack up and leave while Seidel chipped up to 178,000.
Chino Rheem got all of his chips in preflop with against the of Phil Laak who had made the call. The board ran out which kept Rheem's Pocket King's the winner from start to finish.
Rheem now has 148,000 while Laak slips to just 33,000.
Justin Smith got the rest of his stack in on the turn with the on a board reading . Esfandiari had his tournament life in his hands holding . The river bricked off for Smith and he was forced to leave the table earlier than he had planned.
Esfandiari is now one of the room's largest stacks.with 268,000.
Earlier, Brandon Cantu hit a three-outter with a Queen on the river stay alive. According to Nam Le, he just hit another three-outter Queen on the river to scoop a rather large pot.
On a flop, Nam Le bet 3,100 into Cantu who made the call. The turn was the and Cantu raised Le's 5,600-chip bet to 15,100. Le made the call and the river was the . Le checked and Cantu fired 29,600. After counting out his chips and realizing it was just les than half of his remaining stack Le tossed in the chips for a call. Cantu tabled for a full house. Le seemed upset and a little bit sick by Cantu's cards, later claiming to have had Ace-Nine.
Le falls to 36,000 while Cantu has bounced back in a big way as he is all the way up to 130,000.