The World Series of Poker 2014 got underway 10 days ago, kicking off as usual with the $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em Even,t and Roland Reparejo was the first combatant to pick up a bracelet, claiming $82k in prize money in the process. That will be the lowest buyin event of the series, which this year sees the number of $10k events increased to a massive 14 due to player’s requests and general feedback.
If $10k is still pocket change to you, then you could play Event #46: $50k Poker Players’ Championship or Event #57: The $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop. After having a year off (with a $111,111 buyin game in its place) the One Drop returns for 2014 with all the top professionals hoping they can either buy in, satellite in, or get staked into the game that was won in 2012 by “The Magician” Antonio Esfandiari for over $18m. If you want to keep an eye out for these events, the $50k kicks off on June 22nd and the $1m game kicks off on June 29th.
There are a total of 65 events on this year’s WSOP calendar, which is 3 more than last year. In the first 10 days of events, we have seen 13 people claim bracelets with over $27m in prizes paid out already! The 13 winners have shared $5.2m of this, with the biggest cheque to date being the $1.32m awarded to Jonathan Dimmig after his victory in Event #8: $1,500 Millionaire Maker No Limit Hold’em.
Dimmig might not be a household name in the poker world, but plenty of recognisable faces have already picked up top honours and added bracelets to their collections. Vanessa Selbst picked up her 3rd bracelet and over $870k by winning Event #2: $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold’em. Ted Forrest won his 6th bracelet by winning Event #7: $1,500 Seven-Card Razz and Justin Bonomo won his first WSOP bracelet by taking down Event #11: $1,500 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em.
Bonomo’s victory came just 4 days after he was beaten heads up by Tuan Le in Event #5: $10,000 Limit 2-7 Triple Draw Lowball. Bonomo’s victory will also be a boost to 2 of the games most decorated players, who have already had the honour (or displeasure!) of losing heads up for a bracelet this year. Phil Helmuth was agonisingly close to picking up his 14th WSOP bracelet but fell just short in the his quest in Event #7 (see above). Phil is already 3 bracelets clear of living legend Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan. Neither of them have won a bracelet since 2005 and it’s hard to see either of them adding to their 10 bracelets.
Daniel Negreanu have hopes of increasing his stack of 6 bracelets but also had to settle for a runners up spot as he couldn’t get the better of Paul Volpe in Event #13: $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball Championship. Many people would be happy with a cheque for $157k, but not a dejected looking Negreanu. No doubt we’ll see the likable Canadian at a few more final tables before the WSOP is over and it won’t come as a shock to anyone to see him pick up a 7th WSOP bracelet.
At the time of going to press, Greg Raymer is sitting 10/26 in Event #14: $1,500 Limit Omaha Hi-Low. Can he be the first Main Event Champion to pick up a bracelet in 2014? We’ll find out in next week’s column. If you’d like to follow Raymer’s progress in the mean time, check out Pokernews.com for updates on this and every other event over the next 6 weeks.