The WPT L.A. Poker Classic, one of the hottest events on WPT’s schedule, kicked off on Saturday at Commerce Casino for a few days of quality poker action and unmatched thrill
Day 1 of the tournament saw 523 players register into the $10,000 buy-in freezeout tournament. Of those, only 337 bagged and tagged for the night to return to the host casino later today for Day 2.
The tournament’s field on the first day of action generated a prize pool of nearly $5 million. The overall prize pool is yet to be calculated by organizers as registration is still open, but the winner will certainly scoop more then a million dollars for walking the distance to the top.
Hyung Kim and WPT regular Blake Bohn were the only two players who bagged the largest stacks last night to lead the way today. Kim ended Day 1 with 217,200 in chips, while Bohn, a poker pro from Minnesota, put 202,400 into his bag after what he called a “simple day” of poker. It should be noted that Bohn is no stranger to the WPT. The player said that he has been following the poker series since its inception and has been a regular entry in WPT tournaments throughout the past three or four seasons.
Bohn boasts one WPT final table appearance and four top 25 finishes. The player came the closest to capturing a title from the series several years ago when he finished fourth in the WPT Borgata Poker Open. It is to be seen whether he would be able to improve that accomplishment and why not claim the prestigious L.A. Poker Classic title. The player said that it would be “a lifelong dream” to end up with the title.
And while Kim and Bohn were the only two to pass the 200,000 chip mark last night, there were a handful of players that secured a comfortable start of Day 2 action with stacks beyond the 150,000 mark.
More Highlights from the Day
As mentioned above, it was a simple day for Bohn. The player told WPT staff after bagging and tagging for the night that he had not other goals but to survive through the day’s levels. He went on to say that he “ran pretty good, won key pots, stayed patient, and stayed out of harm’s way.” Bohn also pointed out that after building a bit of a stack, he felt more comfortable to begin putting some pressure on his tablemates.
Aside from Kim and Bohn, Rupesh Pattni (189,000), Brian Udo (155,200), and Rachel Dardon (179,600) were the other three players to go beyond the 150,000 mark and round out top five of the temporary leaderboard.
There were several former WPT Main Tour champions to make it through the day, including Mike Del Vecchio, Matas Cimbolas, and Lee Markholt. WPT title holders who ran out of chips and hit the rail on Day 1 included Chino Rheem, Jared Jaffee, James Romero, and Jesse Sylvia, among others.
Day 2 of the WPT L.A. Poker Classic starts today at noon local time. Registration will remain open until the beginning of Level 11, which means that the already impressive prize pool will grow even more. Action at Commerce Casino will continue through March 6 when the official six-handed final table will be determined.
The six final tablists will then head to Las Vegas where they will play the tournament’s televised finale at HyperX Esports Arena at Luxor Las Vegas on March 11.
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