WSOP Main Event Day 1A Level 1: Heinz in Action, Pasalic in Catsuit, Williams Stacking Chips

Tatjana Pasalic is playing Day 1A of the 2012 WSOP Main Event dressed as a kitten. (Heather Borowinski photo)

The 2012 World Series of Poker has been five weeks of poker tournaments but the one that everybody has been waiting for is finally here. The 2012 WSOP Main Event is now underway and the usual cast of characters and big name players are in the house all hoping to become poker’s next superstar. Just prior to Noon PT Ellen Deed, grandmother of Shaun Deeb, was recognized as being the oldest player in the 2011 WSOP Main Event and given the ‘Shuffle Up and Deal’ honors. Before handling that though she was kind enough to tell the rest of the Day 1A field that they were all “playing for second place”.

Once cards were in the air the action began in earnest with amateurs, poker pros, celebrities and even an NHL all-star chasing poker’s most prestigious prize. Some of the players taking their shot Saturday include Mike Sexton, Matt Glantz, David Williams, Issac Haxton and Jay Rozenkrantz. Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo is also in the field today, playing the Main Event for the first time.

Sportsmanship. In Poker. It Happened.

Just 20 minutes into the day Edmund Carusoe, playing his first Main Event, was having a hard time hearing the dealer and seeing the cards from the three seat. In order to make things easier on Carusoe, Bob Horan, seated in the five seat, offered to switch seats and put Carusoe right in front of the dealer. None of the players at the table voiced an objection and the floor was called to get a final ruling. The floor agreed that once Horan played his button the switch would be allowed. The table all applauded the floor’s ruling and Carusoe’s WSOP continues.

The Champ is Here

This time last year Pius Heinz was a relatively unknown German poker pro and one of 6,865 hopefuls. Now he’s the reigning World Champion with his own banner on the wall of the Amazon Room at the Rio. He’s seated at table 410, seat 4 and after the first two-hour level he’s sitting on a stack of 22,000.

David Williams Riding a Roller Coast Early

The first hour of play wasn’t a good one for David Williams. With Williams and another player in the hand and the board showing 7 4 3 5 action was checked to Williams. The 2004 Main Event runner-up bet and was immediately check-raised by his opponent. Williams called and the two saw the T river. Both players checked and Williams saw the bad news as his opponent showed 6 for a seven-high straight. Williams showed A 2 for the wheel before mucking. After the hand Williams was left with just 23,000 from his starting stack of 30,000.

The second hour however was a good one however. With over 10,000 already in the middle and the board showing 9 3 2 7 action was checked to Williams who bed 3,500. His opponent called and the two players saw the A river. Williams’ opponent checked, Williams bet 6,500 and his opponent tanked. Williams offered his opponent some assistance.

“What do you have, maybe I can help you out?”.

His opponent took some time before saying “King high.” Williams laughed and said “No you don’t.” After his opponent called, Williams showed 7 7 for a turned set and scooped the pot to move over 60,000.

Allen Bari Sinking Fast

With the board showing T 3 2 6 and 2,000 in the pot, Allen Bari check-raised his opponent, making it 5,150 to go. Bari’s opponent called and the two saw the 7 on fifth street. Bari fired out a bet of 12,250 and his opponent called after a short deliberation and turned over T 7 for two pair while Bari showed 5 2 for bottom pair and a busted straight draw. Bari was left with just 16,000 and after the hand he tweeted, “Big bluffs literally, and I mean literally never work.. Down to 13k at a table full of clowns and one good Russian”.

Everybody Loves Raymond

It’s become an annual tradition for comedian Ray Romano to play the Main Event and 2012 is no exception. The former Everybody Loves Raymond star found himself seated in the middle of the Amazon Room. He’s seated just four tables away from another Hollywood regular, Kevin Pollak.

Check out the BLUFF Cover Story with Pollak where he talks about just how much he loves the game of poker.

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Lance Bradley

Editor in Chief at
Editor in Chief: Lance Bradley began working with BLUFF in March 2008 and was named Editor in Chief in August 2009. Prior to joining BLUFF Bradley launched an independent poker blog, in 2006. Before entering the world of poker media he was the Poker Room Manager for Bodog from January 2004 until June 2006. He graduated from the Applied Journalism program Kwantlen Polytechnic University in Vancouver, Canada.
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