Comes Up Short Again, WSOP POY Point System in Question, and Kessler Steals a Soda from Brunson

Daniel Negreanu will make headlines for winning his seventh career WSOP bracelet. Today isn’t that day. Kid Poker came up of winning Event #30, $10,000 HORSE Championship.

The Team PokerStars pro was close to winning this bracelet. But he couldn’t quite grab it. Negreanu finished in 6th place ($61,667), after making his third final table appearance at the 2017 WSOP without a win.

David Bach WSOP

With his victory in $10k HORSE, David Bach became the first player of the 2017 WSOP to win multiple bracelets. Yet he’s still only 14th on the Player of the Year leaderboard. (Image: Antonio Abrego /

Negreanu has still been one of the WSOP’s top performers this summer. But he set out to win three bracelets, a goal he’d admit in private that as the WSOP nears its halfway point is about as likely as the proud liberal voting for Donald Trump in 2020.

He even placed side bets to back up his pre-WSOP bracelet bravado.

We do have some good news for the world’s all-time winningest live tournament player, however. The 98th WSOP payday of his career,, his recent cash moved him up to 3rd on the WSOP Player of the Year leaderboard . With 379.25 points, Negreanu trails only Pablo Mariz (459.41) and James Obst (415.77).

Negreanu had a big stack when the final table began and still held the chip lead in the start of Day Three. But the cards simply didn’t cooperate. His stack dwindled into something that he could nurse for so long.

The day belonged to David Bach, a former professional bowler, who at one point in the last table was down to just several big bets. But Bach was able to rebuild his tiny stack, winning third bracelet. and $383,208 for his 31st career WSOP cash, and his the tournament

The win put Bach in a positing that Negreanu imagined himself in -bracelet winner of the 2017 summer. Bach won 11, the $1,500 Dealers Choice 6-Handed.

POY Point System Out of Whack?

Many poker pros, especially high-stakes players, aren’t particularly happy with the new Player of the Year scoring system. This year, it’s based on a formula that rewards Return on Investment (ROI), giving the most points to players who make deep runs in large-field events.

Typically, the higher the buy- together with the possible exception of the Main Event, in the fewer the entries. So the new system doesn’t reward players chasing POY dreams by cashing in $10,000 “Championship” events as much as it did in the past.

Take Bach, for example. He’s the lone multiple bracelet winner so far for 2017. But he’s only 14th on the current POY standings, having bested two fields that had only 514 entries combined.

Current point leader Pablo Mariz, by comparison, won a tournament with 7 the Millionaire Maker,761 starting stacks, and finished runner-up in the $1,000 Tag Team, an event that drew entries that were 843.

Barry Greenstein, by contrast, is benefiting from the new scoring system that is funky. This summer, he’s cashed in an impressive six tournaments, but for less than $40,000 in winnings, which may not have him breaking on buy-ins. The 2011 Poker Hall of Fame inductee is in 8th place on the POY leaderboard.

Heads-Up for $2,500 No-Limit Hold’em Bracelet

Play was stopped after 1 am PT on Sunday morning in Event #29, $2,500 No-Limit Hold’em, with two players remaining. Gaurav Raina and James Calvo will come back today at 1 pm to determine a champion.

Calvo, from the Chicago area, has more than a two-to-one chip advantage (9.6 million to 4.0 million) over the Georgia resident. Neither player has won a WSOP bracelet. This one is worth 6,822.

“Soda Thief” to Get What’s Coming

Crime of the century alert! Allen Kessler finished Day Two in Event #32, $1,500 Omaha HI-Lo 8 or Better Mix, in 21st position out of 29 remaining players. “The Chainsaw” was presumably happy to advance to Day Three on Sunday, but disappointed with his below-average stack and an uphill battle to climb.

Todd Brunson believes he knows why Kessler’s stack is so small. The Poker Hall of Famer and new restaurant owner says karma is in play, noting that Kessler had visited Brunson’s Roma Deli several days ago and walked out without paying for a soda.

The alleged “soda thief” is chasing chip leader Howard Smith for a 1st place prize of $193,484. Irrespective of what happens karmicallly, Kessler’s guaranteed a Sunday min-cash of $4,742, so perhaps he’ll pay Brunson the $2.95 he still owes for his drink.

Old-School Pros Putting on Show

Event #31, $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold’em Championship, is down to 67 players. Dan Heimiller, a two-time bracelet winner, is the only player to cross the 1 million chip mark (1,021,000).

The tournament began with 5,389 seniors chasing a $617,303 payday. That includes an extended list of old-school players. 2004 Main Event champion, Greg Raymer, had a big stack but was eliminated in 192nd place.

Cliff “JohnnyBax” Josephy, an 2016 November Niner, also busted on Day Two. Those who didn’t bust include the chip leader Heimiller and Bill Klein, a wealthy businessman who often plays high-stakes cash games and tournaments.

Vornicu Bags Two Massive Stacks

What a day for nine- time. The California native bagged the largest stack after Day One in Event #33, $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em. He’ll come back for Day Two on Sunday with 198,000 chips.

It was his second big mid-tourney score of the day. He bagged the chip lead The Giant, in the Day 1B flight of a $365 buy-in event with Day One starting flights each July 7. We can’t promise this isn’t “fake news,” but Vornicu is probably the first player to finish the day using a chip lead twice in 24 hours in two separate events.

Sunday Stroll in the WSOP

In Event #34, $10,000 Limit 27 Lowball Triple Draw Championship, Adam Owen will come back on Sunday with the of the 80 original entrants remaining 26 chip lead and

New events getting underway on Sunday include Event #35, $1,000 Super Seniors No-Limit Hold’em at 11 am, and Event #36, $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em 6-Handed at 3 pm.

The “Super Seniors” event is open to players 65 and older, while the Seniors championship lets in any young whippersnapper who’s turned 50.

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