Sunday, November 09, 2014

Travel Report: Season XIII WPT bestbet Bounty Scramble, Day 1b -- Scrambling from the Start

These last two days have been two of the more enjoyable Day 1s I can remember covering in a poker tournament. There are a lot of factors leading me to say that, among them getting to work with great folks including a friendly and cooperative venue staff. Again, though -- as I mentioned yesterday -- having these bounties made the early stage of the tournament much more interesting both for the players and those covering them. And the “chip leader bonus” for the end-of-day leader once more provided a lot of excitement as things wound down, too.

To clarify, there were a total of 40 bounties worth $2,500 assigned to particular players, some more than once after they busted and re-entered. There was also a $5,000 prize given to the player ending Day 1a with the chip lead, then another $5K for the Day 1b leader. The money for those prizes didn’t come from the prize pool, by the way.

The bestbet Jacksonville also ran a ton of satellites for the $5K event, which definitely helped boost the numbers. Ultimately they drew 461 entries, which to be honest was probably about twice what I thought it would be before coming down here. Thus they’ve more than doubled the $2 million guarantee.

I mentioned excitement at the end of the night yesterday associated with the “chip leader bonus.” Several players were bunched around the 280,000-chip mark, and in fact 2006 WSOP Main Event champion Jamie Gold -- with whom I ended up chatting a few times during the day -- was one of them. Then on one of the very last hands of the night there was a set over set over set situation (no shinola) that resulted in Corey Hochman surging up to 324,000 to end the day with the lead to win the prize.

Gotta run as play is soon starting again. Check over at the WPT site for updates on Day 2 today where 161 players return, 15 of them bounties.

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