2017 WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event Day 1A: Eddy Sabat Leads, Receives Heartfelt Note from Todd Brunson



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One of the most eagerly anticipated and fun events of the year, the World Poker Tour (WPT) Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event, kicked off Monday with 361 entries for Day 1A. I say “entries” instead of “players,” as this is a single re-entry event. Players are allowed one initial entry and one re-entry; they can both be used in a single flight – either Day 1A or Day 1B – or, if someone was eliminated on Day 1A and would rather try again on Tuesday rather than yesterday, that re-entry can be used on Day 1B. Play was scheduled to stop when one-third of the field remained and it did – just 119 players made it through Day 1A. Eddy Sabat is the chip leader with 265,600 chips.

The Bay 101 Shooting Star is a very unique event on the World Poker Tour or any live tour, really. A number of players are denoted as “Shooting Stars” and have bounties on their heads. A player who eliminates a Shooting Star from the tournament receives a $2,500 reward, a Shooting Star Bounty Medallion, and an autographed t-shirt with the Star’s face on it. If a Star wins the tournament, he or she will receive their own $2,500 bounty on top of the regular prize money.

Additionally, the chip leaders after Day 1A and Day 1B will receive $10,000. Blind levels are also short, lasting just one hour each during the two starting flights.

Every table at the outset of the starting flights will have at least one Shooting Star present. The list of confirmed Stars is as follows:

Liv Boeree
Todd Brunson
Bruce Buffer
James Calderaro
Mohsin Charania
Tony Dunst
Ari Engel
Antonio Esfandiari
Matt Glantz
Garrett Greer
Jeff Gross
Joe Hachem
Christian Harder
Loni Harwood
Phil Hellmuth
Maria Ho
Jared Jaffee
Cliff Josephy
Anna Khait
Jason Koon
Chance Kornuth
Kitty Kuo
Igor Kurganov
Mike Leah
Pat Lyons
Ankush Mandavia
Aaron Massey
Mike Matusow
Lon McEachern
Joe McKeehen
Chris Moorman
Carlos Mortensen
Daniel Negreanu
Qui Nguyen
Scotty Nguyen
Dominik Nitsche
Tyler Patterson
Max Pescatori
Marvin Rettenmaier
Ryan Riess
Matt Salsberg
Tom Schneider
Noah Schwartz
Erik Seidel
Mike Sexton
Richard Seymour
Dan Shak
Dan Smith
JC Tran
David Tuchman
Vince Van Patten
David Williams
Ema Zajmovic
Anthony Zinno

In addition to having the chip lead and earning the $10,000 bonus, Eddy Sabat’s day was made when he eliminated Shooting Star Todd Brunson. The $2,500 bounty was nice, but Brunson is known for his, shall we say, “colorful” messages he writes on the t-shirts when he is knocked out. When Sabat was seated with Brunson, he knew what his mission for the day was: knock out the Poker Hall of Famer.

“Todd and I go way back in this tournament. He probably doesn’t remember, but every time we always talk about his t-shirt stories and what he draws [and writes] on them,” Sabat told WPT.com. “I just let him know at the start of the day that I wanted every expletive he could think of. I didn’t want him to change anything, I didn’t want a G-rated t-shirt. I wanted the real deal.”

Sure enough, Sabat knocked out Brunson and Brunson did not disappoint, scrawling an expletive-filled message to Sabat across the entire front and back of the t-shirt.

One of the tamer portions of the diatribe (NOTE: FOUL LANGUAGE INCOMING):

“Havad Khan is a more gracious winner than you will ever be if you live to be 90 which I’m sure you won’t. Karma has a way of dealing with jerk offs like you and your little friend Matt Savage the flaming tournament dick face director.”

WPT.com has photos of the front and back of the shirt here.

Day 1B of the Bay 101 Shooting Star will begin at 11:00am Pacific.

World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event – Day 1A Chip Leaders

1.    Eddy Sabat – 265,600
2.    Sergio Aido – 242,500
3.    Eduards Kudrjavcevs – 235,000
4.    Justin Young – 231,000
5.    Garrett Greer – 219,000
6.    Phillip Rhodes – 211,100
7.    Kevin MacPhee – 188,500
8.    Jake Schwartz – 185,600
9.    Richard Tuhrim – 168,500
10.    Noah Schwartz – 165,300

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