The 2015 World Series of Poker now has five days in the books and has already had some historic moments and some controversy. The next seven days have a number key events on the schedule and there are a few storylines emerging that are worth watching.
Will James Woods Continue to Cash?
James Woods – yes, THAT James Woods – has already recorded two WSOP cashes this summer. He started things off by making the final table of the $3,000 No Limit Hold’em shootout, finishing 7th for $28,832. He went right back to work the next day in the $1,000 Hyper No Limit Hold’em, finishing 37th for $5,324. With just six events done and dusted Woods is one of just a handful of players with multiple cashes. Can the 68-year-old actor Golden Globe winner keep putting up results as the grind of the WSOP schedule kicks in?
The First Championship Final Table
For the biggest players in the game the most important tournaments on the WSOP schedule each year are the $10,000+ buy-in events labeled Championship events. On Tuesday the $10,000 Deuce to Seven Triple Draw final table will be the first such event of the summer. The event attracted a 109-player field with 56 making it through Day 1. Among the superstars who made it through Day 1 with a better-than-average stack were Phil Galfond, Scott Clements, Matt Glantz, Calvin Anderson and winner of the $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo event, Robert Mizrachi.
The $10,000 Heads Up Championship
Speaking of the $10,000 Championship events, one of the most hotly anticipated events of that ilk starts on Tuesday. The $10,000 Heads Up Championship event always features a murderers row of poker’s best players. Last year the event drew 136 players with Davide Suriano beating Sam Stein in the final. The event is scheduled for three days with the final table, which will be streamed live on WSOP.com, set for Thursday evening.
The Colossus Final Table
There’s a chance – albeit a slight one it seems – that the furor over the flat payouts for the $565 Colossus event will have subsided a little bit by the time the event reaches a final table. The WSOP schedule says that the final table of this event runs on Tuesday but that’s only possible if the 506 players returning Monday bust out in record numbers. Look for the final table – and the live stream on WSOP.com – to be played Wednesday, with the winner walking away with $638,880.
The Millionaire Maker
So a lot of the players in the Colossus were surprised to hear that first place in that event wasn’t paying $1 million. Friday means the return of the $1,500 NLHE Millionaire Maker where the eventual winner is guaranteed to win $1 million. The event has run the last two years with fields of 7.977 (2014) and 6,343 (2013). It will be interesting to watch this year what impact, if any, the huge Colossus field had on participation here. Will players who made a little better than a min-cash in Colossus try and run it up in the Milly Maker or did a large contingent of recreational players fire three bullets in Colossus instead of one bullet in the Milly Maker?
Time to Get ‘Turbo’ Boosted
Starting Sunday at Noon, the $1,000 Turbo event – not be confused with the Hyper Hold’em event that wraps up Monday – could see a huge field as players who busted the Millionaire Maker find their way back to the Rio for another shot at a bracelet. Last year the two-day event had a field of 1,473 players with Doug Polk winning the first bracelet of his career. Players play 30-minutes levels on Day 1 and 40-minute levels on Day 2.
Improved Communication from WSOP
The first week of the WSOP has had some challenges and hiccups. Players and fans alike voiced their displeasure with the quality and new format of the WSOP-run live updates product and then there was the issue with the payouts in the Colossus event. In both cases many pointed out tweets and replies from the @WSOP were less than welcoming in tone. Sunday night, in the midst of growing criticism over the Colossus payout structure, TwoPlusTwo PokerCast co-host Adam Schwartz noticed and tweeted the following:
The @WSOP account is not selecting it’s retweets well at the moment
— Adam Schwartz (@PokercastAdam) June 1, 2015
Some players who had directed their criticism towards the WSOP twitter account had their accounts blocked by the corporate account. As the first week – usually the roughest of any WSOP – wraps up and the dust settles on some of the early struggles, players and fans alike hope to see a more friendly tone from the “official source for World Series of Poker updates and news”.
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