For one, I’d like to eavesdrop a bit on Event No. 15, the $1,000 Ladies No-Limit Hold’em World Championship. Secondly, I need to see if there are any extra details I’ll need to be aware of since Event No. 11 is scheduled to be aired “live” on ESPN360.com. As of this moment, I have no idea what exactly is going to be shown streaming over the web today and whether it will affect how we cover the Event No. 11 final table or not. Will find out, and let you know here what the story is later on.
By the way, I think the verdict among most observers is that the structure employed for the first two days of the Shootout is probably best characterized as “fast” -- perhaps overly so, especially early on -- despite what the tourney announcer said before the first hand was dealt on Friday. (He used the word “slow” to describe the structure.)
I noticed two-time WPT champ Alan Goehring offering some analysis of the structure over on Two Plus Two. In fact, he apparently planned to play in Event No. 11 until he looked over the structure sheet and decided to pass as it appeared to him too much of a crapshoot. He also pointed out how yesterday over half the field -- 21 of the 36 entered -- were gone before the first break. Pretty damn quick, really, especially for a $5,000 event.
Checking out the schedule of play for today, it looks like they might’ve tried to slow down things somewhat for the start of today’s the final table. Players are starting with 1,000,000 chips today, and the blinds are starting at 10,000/20,000 -- again, just 50 BBs. But it looks like they’ve snuck an extra level between Level 1 and Level 2, so perhaps we won’t be losing half our table in the first hour today.
There are four other events going on today as well . . .
The final table for Event No. 12, the $1,500 Limit Hold’em event, is also scheduled for this afternoon. Looks like they played that one down to 18 yesterday, so they’ll have some eliminations to take care of before they can get to that final table. Erick Lindgren, winner of Event No. 4, is second in chips at the moment. Doesn’t surprise me, as he handled the limit rounds of that Mixed Hold’em event especially well. And Vinny Vinh is not just alive (meant both figuratively and literally here), but has the chip lead going into today.
Event No. 13, another of those $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em tourneys, enters Day 2 today. Yesterday while covering my event I happened to be stationed alongside Mean Gene and Pojo who were covering Event No. 13. We were a little surprised at how the payout was handled for this one. Event No. 13 attracted a total of 1,390 runners, but only the top 99 are getting paid. Several players kept coming over to our table, positioned in front of one of the large plasma screens displaying the tourney clock and other info including the number who cashed, and wondered aloud why the tourney was only paying the top 7.1% rather than the usual 10%. Bryan Micon (NeverWinPoker) came over at one point, saying “Are they really only paying 99?”
We speculated that perhaps they had planned a payout schedule according to 1,000 players, then didn’t adjust it when more showed up. Whatever the case, 137 players are left, with Eli Elezra and two-time 2008 WSOP final tablist Theo Tran atop the leaderboard at the moment.
Event No. 14, the $10,000 World Championship Seven Card Stud event, enters Day 2 also, where 80 out of the original 158 entrants remain alive. Alexander Kostritsyn has the chip lead entering today’s play. Also in the top twenty are Chad Brown, Daniel Negreanu, Cyndy Violette, Rolf Slotboom, Scott Fischman, Erik Seidel, Andy Bloch, and Alex Kravchenko.
Finally, one other event gets started later in the afternoon, Event No. 16, the $2,000 Omaha Hi-Low Split-8 or Better event. This is the second Omaha/8 event thus far (the first was a $1,500 buy-in).
Follow ‘em all over at PokerNews. And if anybody happens to watch that Event No. 11 final table over ESPN360.com, let me know what you see, as I don’t expect I’ll be able to watch it while I try cover the sucker live.