Main Event End of Level 21: Leif Force Charges Up Chip Counts, Politano Leads

Leif Force is looking to make another deep run in the Main Event (Drew Amato Photo)

Leif Force is looking to make another deep run in the Main Event (Drew Amato Photo)

As Day 5 of the 2014 World Series of Poker Main Event inches closer to its halfway point, an oldie but goodie is making his way to the top of the chip counts. Leif Force chipped up to over 3.2 million and sits behind Bruno Politano for the tournament chip lead.

Force finished 11th in this event in 2006 for over $1.1 million and had plenty of camera time on ESPN during its broadcast that year. Since then, he has gone on to have a successful career as a professional, netting over $2.2 million in live tournament earnings and won a bracelet in the $3,000 No Limit Hold’em/Pot Limit Omaha Heads-Up event in 2012.

Griffin Benger and Dan Smith continue to hold steady in the top 10 and Mark Newhouse is positioning himself for a second straight November Nine appearance. Newhouse sits with 2.36 million in chips and is just outside the top 10.

Politano took the chip lead on one of the last hands of the level after flopping middle set against Zach Jiganti‘s bottom set to win a 4.2 million chip pot.

Maglio Rallies, Triples Stack in Two Hands

Vincent Maglio was one of the shortest stacks coming back in Level 21, but he gave himself some serious breathing room in the first few hands. After Marius Pospiech opened to 32,000 in early position, Maglio three-bet all in for 129,000 in the big blind and Pospiech called. Maglio was well behind with A 8 against Pospiech’s A Q, but the T 8 4 flop gave him a pair, the 4 turn kept him ahead and the 8 river gave him a winning full house.

On the very next hand the action folded around to Maglio in the small blind, he completed and Matthew Leecy checked. The flop was Q 7 4, Maglio bet 16,000 and Leecy called. The turn was the 7 and both players checked. The river was the 5, Maglio bet 52,000 and Leecy called. Maglio showed Q 8 and took down the pot, building his stack to over 400,000.

Zeitoun Bounced By Zaichenko

After starting Day 5 with 1.3 million, Jean-Jacques Zeitouin saw it all fall apart in the first level of play, leaving him with just over 10 big blinds. With just one big blind in the hand, Andrey Zaichenko raised to 35,000 under the gun and it folded around to Zeitouin on the button. He three-bet all in for 109,000 and Zaichenko called, showing K T. It was a race for Zeitouin and his 7 7, but it was one he was destined to lose as it ran out K Q 8 2 9 to end his 2014 WSOP Main Event run in 223rd place.

Zaichenko was over 1.5 million after winning this pot.

Einhorn Wheels His Way Towards a Crucial Chop

Sometimes when you’re deep in a tournament, especially one like the Main Event, you need a little bit of luck on your side. After Jeff Madsen raised to 32,000 under the gun David Einhorn, who was next to act, three-bet to 90,000. Action folded around to William Tonking in the small blind and he four-bet all in for 305,000. Madsen quickly folded and Einhorn asked for a count. With just 165,000 more than Tonking, Einhorn called and showed Q Q, only to receive the bad news when Tonking tabled K K.

The 5 3 2 flop showed little hope for Einhorn, but the 4 turn added eight outs for a chop. Sure enough, the A fell on the river and both of them played the ace to five straight.

“I’ll play the board,” said Einhorn slyly.

“First you don’t buy my team and now this? You’re killing me David!” said Tonking with a wistful smile.

Open Seat at the Feature Table

Max Dupont open-shoved all in and Christopher Sly called behind him holding pocket tens. Dupont tabled pocket jacks with the confidence of a man sure to doulbe up. The board ran K Q 4 T 4, Dupont exhaled heavily and waited for an escort to the payout desk. Sly stacked just under a million after the hand.

Make Room for the Daily Deepstacks

The Brasilia and Pavilion rooms are no longer with us and the WSOP is running a Daily Deepstack event in the Amazon room. The last line of tables in the Purple section of the Main Event have one table between them and Daily Deepstack.

Jon Aguiar and Griffen Benger complained to tournament officials and they wanted to either move to the Orange section or be allowed to wear headphones.

The lead floorman quickly got WSOP TD Jack Effel, who wasn’t on site at the time, on the phone and asked about moving them. It seems that they may get their wish to move tables to the Orange section to get away from the Daily Deepstack.

Jared Bleznick Gets Rivered, Eliminated

With nearly 440,000 in the pot and the board showing 9 8 3 4 Jared Bleznick moved all-in for his last 468,000. Michael Finstein tanked for two full minutes before announcing “call”. Bleznick jumped from his seat and flipped up Q Q and Finstein turned over A 9. Bleznick stood and waited patiently while ESPN camera crews got in to position to film the final card.

Once all cameras were in place the dealer was given the go ahead to deal the final card. The river was the A giving Finstein top two pair and Bleznick stood in silence for a few minutes staring at the board and seemingly replaying the hand in his head while he waited to be escorted to the payout desk.

After the hand Finstein had 2.9 million.

All Hail The King

Dan Smith opened to 36,000 in middle postion and Tony Ruberto raised to 80,000 directly behind him. The blinds released, Smith called and the flop came Q 6 2. Smith check-called 80,000 and the turn came J. Both players checked, the river came 2 and Smith took a few moments before betting 300,000. Ruberto shot him a glance, went in the tank and ultimately folded.

“If I shove do you call?” Ruberto asked.

Smith just smiled as he stacked up another pot and neared 2.7 million.

Aguiar Finds a Double With Aces

Jon Aguiar was sitting on just 13 big blinds when he open-shoved under the gun for 216,000, and Brian Townsend was next to act. He looked Aguiar up, and everyone else elected to get out of the way. Townsend would need a lot of help from the board with A J, as Aguiar had A A. The flop was 8 6 3, giving Townsend a whiff of hope in regards to a runner-runner flush draw.

“Red,” requested Aguiar, and the turn complied as it was the 5, which had Townsend drawing dead. The river was the 5, and Aguiar moved up to 476,000. Townsend was left with 850,000.

Tim Reilly Left Short After Multi-Way Four-Bet Pot

Nick Yunis raised to 34,000 from early position and was three-bet by Mukul Pahuja on the button to 82,000. Tim Reilly was in the big blind and cold four-bet to 192,000 to send Yunis into the tank. Yunis flatted, as did Pahuja and the three saw a flop of JTT.

All three players checked and the turn card was the 2. Reilly checked and Yunis bet 240,000. Pahuja took a few moments and folded and Reilly tank-called, leaving himself with 265,000.

The river was the 7 and Reilly checked again. Yunis played with his chips for a second before pushing a stack of orange, 5,000 denomination chips forward and announcing he was all in for effectively Reilly’s last 265,000. Reilly spent several minutes in the tank before folding. Yunis scooped the pot and sits with 2.2 million.

Garrett Greer Doubles Through Emil Olsson

From UTG Emil Olsson raised to 35,000 and action folded around to Garrett Greer in the cutoff who moved all-in for 219,000. Olsson asked how much the total bet was and after hearing Greer say “219K” he called. Greer tabled J J while Olsson showed 9 9. The board ran out T T 2 3 A and Greer doubled up to 483,000 while Olsson was left with 440,000.

Notable Bustouts

Mark Herm – 226th
Raj Vohra – 225th
Jean-Jacques Zeitoun – 223rd
Jared Bleznick – 217th
Kevin Eyster – 204th
Mike Wattel – 200th
Taylor von Kriegenbergh – 196th
Jeff Madsen – 188th

Players Remaining: 195

Top 10 Chip Counts – 2014 WSOP Main Event, End of Level 21

  1. Bruno Politano – 4,960,000
  2. Leif Force – 3,280,000
  3. Clayton Hamm – 3,235,000
  4. Matthew Haugen – 3,100,000
  5. Trevor Martin – 3,100,000
  6. Griffin Benger – 2,900,000
  7. Kyle Keranen – 2,867,000
  8. Dan Smith – 2,850,000
  9. Michael Finstein – 2,705,000
  10. Pakinai Lisawad – 2,518,000
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