|Day One, Tournament of
Champions WSOP Tournament
Day 1, Official Results and
Leader: Andrew Black,
followed by Daniel Negreanu
|WSOP Poker Tournament Results|
|WSOP Tournament of Champions
Rio, Las Vegas, Day 1
2006 Tournament of Champions
Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino – Las Vegas
Number of Entries: 27
Total Prize Money: $2,000,000
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Black Back on the Attack!
Rio Hosts the 2006 Tournament of Champions
As final table begins, Irishman Andrew Black is the chip leader,
Daniel Negreanu a distant second, eight more round-out the field
Las Vegas, NV -- The third annual Tournament of Champions kicked off today at
the Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas. The TOC is a one-of-a-kind
freeroll competition consisting of the top World Series of Poker and WSOP
Circuit players of the past year. The high-level of competition makes the
tournament one of the toughest events to win in poker. Annie Duke was
victorious the inaugural TOC held in 2004. Last year, Mike “the Mouth”
Matusow won the championship.
The invitational tournament offers a total prize pool of $2 million – including a
million-dollar first-prize. Nine places will be paid. For all players -- the special
event cost nothing to enter, as all prize money is posted by Harrah’s
Entertainment and its esteemed corporate partners -- including Sobe
Adrenaline Rush (energy drink) and PartyPoker.net (online poker school).
The 27 invited players this year included all of the WSOP Circuit event winners
from August 2005 through June 2006 (12 seats). Players who made it to the
final table of the 2005 WSOP main event were also invited (nine seats). The
remaining seats were filled by individuals selected by Harrah’s Entertainment
and its sponsors (six seats). Those players ranged from poker legend and two-
time WSOP champion Doyle Brunson, to Sarah Strong, who beat out 100,000
competitors to win sandwich-king Quizno’s special promotional qualifying
With so much prize money and bragging rights for one of poker’s most
prestigious titles at stake, ESPN was on hand to film the entire event for future
On Day One, 17 players busted-out. Players were eliminated in the following
27th – Abe Korotki went out first when he flopped a set of eights against Daniel
Negreanu’s set of jacks. The higher set won.
26th – 1989 WSOP champion Phil Hellmuth went out early when his Q-Q was
flattened by 2000 WSOP champion Chris “Jesus” Ferguson.
25th – Greg Merkow flopped top pair but lost to Gus Hansen’s 6-6 when “The
Great Dane” caught a six, good for a set.
24th – Peter Feldman was dealt 4-4 and had the best hand until Chris “Jesus”
Ferguson caught a jack on the river to go with A-J. Feldman went out 24th.
23rd – Steve Dannenmann was eliminated when his 8-8 lost in a big three-way
pot with Daniel Negreanu and Joe Hachem. Negreanu had A-Q and flopped an
ace, putting Dannenmann out of the tournament.
22nd – The reigning world poker champion Joe Hachem had the best hand
when he moved all-in with Q-Q. Steve Dannenmann was all-in as well, holding
8-8. Daniel Negreanu had A-Q and caught an ace on the flop, eliminating the
top two finishers of the 2005 WSOP in one single hand.
21st – Jeff King started his final hand with A-K but lost to Andrew Black’s 9-9. A
nine came on the river, which was the crowing blow for King.
20th – Law student Brad Kondracki busted out with A-J. He ran into Chris
“Jesus” Ferguson’s Q-Q. A queen came on the turn and ended Kondracki’s
hopes of a winning verdict.
19th – Sarah Strom, a crowd favorite, showed she could play poker with the
best. She outlasted champions Hachem and Hellmuth, and might have finished
higher had it not been for some very bad luck. Strom was low on chips and
moved all-in with A-Q against Daniel Negreanu, holding an embarrassingly bad
hand – 5-2. When the flop came A-3-4 giving Negreanu a straight, he went
over and gave Strom a conciliatory hug. Strom smiled and waved to the crowd.
She could be proud of her play in this tournament.
18th – John Spadavecchia, a veteran of many poker battles lost this one when
he played an A-8 aggressively and missed, losing to Doyle Brunson when the
final board showed J-10-7-8-5.
17th – Mike O’Malley busted-out when his A-Q was crushed by Daniel Negreanu’
s 3-2. It proved to be yet another weak hand that turned into a monster. O’
Malley moved all-in holding top pair when an ace flopped, and Negreanu called
with a pair of threes. Another three fell on the turn (good for three-of-a-kind)
and O’Malley waved goodbye.
16th – Vinny Vinh went out with 6-6 against Chris Reslock’s 7-7. Reslock would
be a giant killer over the next hour, as he eliminated three consecutive players.
15th – Clint Baskin was eliminated when his 9-9 was cracked by Chris Reslock’s
A-K. Reslock rivered a king, and Baskin melted away in 15th place.
14th – Tex Barch was short on chips and moved in with J-9 against Chris
Reslock’s K-Q. Reslock made a pair. Barch didn’t. Barch went home.
13th – Poker icon Doyle “Texas Dolly” Brunson went out in unlucky 13th place
when his K-Q lost to Aaron Kanto’s Q-Q.
12th – Scott Lazar, a movie producer in Hollywood, went out next with A-K
against Kido Pham’s Q-Q. Lazar failed to make a pair, and was cut from the
script in 12th place.
11th – Aaron Kantor took a tough beat when his A-K lost to Andrew Black’s A-
10. Black flopped two pair (aces and tens) and Kantor was left wondering what
went wrong and ended up going out just short of the money.
That left ten players to return tomorrow for the final table. The ten finalists,
born in six different nations, represent four different countries – USA, Sweden,
Ireland, and Denmark. The ten finalists of the 2006 Tournament of Champions
consist of the following players:
Seat 1: Kido Pham
Thang “Kido” Pham was born in Vietnam and now lives in Dallas. He pulled off a
major upset in the Bally’s Las Vegas WSOP Circuit championship and arrives at
the final table in fourth place.
Seat 2: Chris “Jesus” Ferguson
Chris Ferguson is one of the world’s most popular poker players. He won the
WSOP in 2000, and currently owns five gold bracelets. He arrives at this final
table in the middle of the pack.
Seat 3: Darrell Dicken
Darrell Dicken, a.k.a. “GigaBet” won the WSOP Circuit championship at Harrah’s
Rincon, near San Diego. He arrives with a modest chip stack.
Seat 4: Mike “the Mouth” Matusow
The defending champion of this event is Mike Matusow, who won last year’s $1
million top prize. He also finished ninth in the WSOP main event last year,
earning another $1 million. Should he repeat as TOC champion, he would truly
be the million-dollar man.
Seat 5: Daniel Negreanu
Canadian-born Daniel Negreanu now lives in Las Vegas. When he won his first
WSOP gold bracelet in 1998, he was the youngest winner in WSOP history at
the time. He now owns three gold bracelets and arrives second in the chip
Seat 6: Andrew Black
Andrew Black finished fifth in the WSOP main event last year, earning $1.75
million. The mystical Irishman is clearly on a mission here and arrives with an
impressive chip lead – twice the amount of chips as his closest rival.
Seat 7: Mike Sexton
Mike Sexton has evolved into one of poker’s greatest ambassadors and is one
of the game’s most recognizable faces. Sexton is a widely-respected television
poker commentator and writer and won a WSOP gold bracelet in 1989.
Seat 8: Gus Hansen
“The Great Dane” is one of poker’s most aggressive players. He has enjoyed
much success in poker – yet for all his poker glory, he has yet to win a WSOP
gold bracelet. He has a big challenge at the final table, as the player in ninth
Seat 9: Chris Reslock
Chris Reslock won the Showboat Atlantic City WSOP Circuit championship. He
was tough on the first day, eliminating three players. But he ran cold towards
the end of Day One and arrives at the final table as the shortest stack.
Seat 10: Daniel Bergsdorf
Daniel Bergsdorf finished seventh in the WSOP main event last year, earning
$1.3 million. The Swede is third in chips at the start of the final table.
Prize money will be distributed, as follows:
1st Place -- $1,000,000
2nd Place – 325,000
3rd Place – 250,000
4th Place – 150,000
5th Place – 100,000
6th Place – 75,000
7th Place – 50,000
8th Place – 25,000
9th Place – 25,000
Final table play starts on Monday, June 26 at 12 noon PST.
by Nolan Dalla
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