MIKE LEAH IN FOCUS: Mixed Feelings at the Midway Point of the WSOP

Mike Leah's put together a few deep runs so far at the 2015 WSOP, and while he's currently up on the summer he feels like he could have made more out of those opportunities.

Mike Leah’s put together a few deep runs so far at the 2015 WSOP, and while he’s currently up on the summer he feels like he could have made more out of those opportunities.

The 2015 World Series of Poker has crossed its halfway point, and despite his best efforts none of the 36 open bracelets awarded to date this summer belong to Mike Leah.

Leah has put together some tremendous runs in that stretch, making two final tables, finishing 39th out of 22,374 in the Colossus and putting together another deep run just a few days ago in the $3,000 HORSE, where he finished 13th. With a clearly stated goal coming in, however, Leah isn’t satisfied with what he’s done so far this summer.

“I have mixed feelings,” said Leah. “I have five cashes already and the most I’ve ever had in a summer in Vegas is five. I feel good about that, that I’ve given myself lots of chances, two final tables, 4th and the 7th, then just missing the final table in the HORSE. I feel that I’m playing well and giving myself lots of chances.”

“I definitely would have liked to get more out of them monetary wise, [especially] getting 39th in the Colossus,” continued Leah. “I’ve been really close to some pretty good money and while I’m up on the summer it’s not as much as I’d like it to be. Anything shy of winning a bracelet this summer is still going to be a bit of a disappointment.”

Leah’s latest run, in that HORSE event, was especially frustrating because he started off as the second-shortest stack with just four big bets to start Day 3 and dug his way out of that hole immediately, only for it to fall the wrong way at precisely the wrong moment.

“I came in knowing that my day could be over in a hand,” said Leah. “I went on a really nice round and built it up to well above average with, maybe something like 17 left. I was fairly healthily over average. It’s a very swingy game and you can be chipleader with 17 left and go out 16th, and the hand that crippled me was a very, very frustrating one when he was 20 percent basically going to the river for a pot that would have put me in top 3 in chips. Instead, it basically crippled me. That was a pretty tough way for it to end, but coming in [second] shortest out of 29 to get 13th wasn’t so bad. The fact that I gave myself a chance, then had it taken away was tough.”

Leah jumped in the $1,500 10 Game Mix event after busting out, but he fell short of bagging on Day 1 in that tournament. It might have been a blessing in disguise for Leah, who got something that he’s been sorely lacking through the first few weeks of his busy summer grind – a breather.

“I just had my longest break of the summer so far. I busted that [10 Game] last night at 10, 10:30 and didn’t start today ’til 4.” said Leah. “I had an 18 hour break which doesn’t seem like much, but I got to go out to the pool and caught up on emails and did some stuff that I’d been kind of putting off, plus nine or 10 hours of sleep. I actually feel really good right now.”

He took advantage and put together another strong Day 1 showing in a Championship event.

“I kind of restarted which is perfect timing, because the $10K [Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo], it’s probably my second favorite event of the summer. Right after that is the $50K, which is my favorite. It was a good time for a nice little refresher.”

Leah continued to build Saturday afternoon, and he was in the top 10 chip counts by the midway point of Day 2 in the Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo Championship.

While it may seem like every sports cliche rolled into one, taking things one game and one day at a time has allowed Leah to put his best effort forward so far at the 2015 WSOP. When asked about his future, he’s only allowed himself to look as far forward as Sunday’s $50,000 Poker Players Championship.

“Definitely not thinking anywhere ahead of that one,” said Leah. “These two tournaments, I’m really wanting to focus on them and give them my best shot. The $50K could last 1-5 days. I don’t want to think of anything past that. That’s about it.”

Those that think highly of Leah’s strong runs so far this summer and over the last couple of years can get in on the action for the $50,000 PPC. Leah’s selling pieces of himself on YouStake.com, starting at 1 percent of his action.

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Tim Fiorvanti

Tim Fiorvanti graduated from St. John's University with a B.S. in Journalism in 2008. After several years in the industry, he started working for BLUFF in the summer of 2010. He worked his way up at BLUFF and joined full time as a Senior Writer in April of 2012. Fiorvanti now serves as the Managing Editor of BLUFF. He's a tortured Mets and Jets fan, along with several other frustrating allegiances, but he's also a two-time defending BLUFF Fantasy Football Champion.
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