2016 WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open Main Event Day 1A: John Lee, Kou Vang Neck-and-Neck

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As the Aussie Millions came to a close, the World Poker Tour (WPT) got its first Main Event of 2016 going as the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open Main Event kicked off in Atlantic City Sunday. It was fantastic timing, too, as just a week after a ridiculous, historic blizzard, the city broke its high temperature record for January 31st. In New Jersey, at the end of January, the thermometer hit a balmy 64 degrees, besting the previous record – set in 1988 and 2012 – by one degree. What snow?

359 players showed up for Day 1A of the tournament and about 200 were eliminated, leaving 162 to make it through to Day 2. John Lee emerged as the chip leader with 210,700 chips, but hot on his tail is Kou Vang with 209,300. Anthony Newman is also close, sitting in third place with 195,500.

Other notable names who still have chips include Kevin Saul (153,600), Barry Hutter (139,300), Vanessa Selbst (130,500), Anthony Gregg (127,400), Jonathan Little (110,400), Olivier Busquet (81,200), and Anthony Zinno (68,000).

Tournament leader John Lee has some solid live tournament experience, though most of his cashes are in rather low buy-in events under $1,000. He has earned $371,828 in his career according to TheHendonMob.com, most of that coming at the 2006 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event, where he finished 44th and won $247,399. He has also already cashed at the Borgata Winter Poker Open, albeit for just $1,089. Then again, when that’s about double your buy-in from the $2 Million Deep Stack event, that’s not such a bad day. I mean, hell, I’d like to make $500 today.

There will be one more opening flight for the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open Main Event, the appropriately named Day 1B on Monday, which will begin at 11:00am ET. The survivors from both starting flights will return to the Borgata at noon on Tuesday for Day 2. The tourney will run through Friday with the live streamed final table.

2016 World Poker Tour Borgata Winter Poker Open Main Event – Day 1A Chip Leaders

1.    John Lee – 210,700
2.    Kou Vang – 209,300
3.    Anthony Newman – 195,500
4.    Lawrence Lakatosh – 176,300
5.    Jared Griener – 170,700
6.    Steven Buckner – 167,300
7.    Michael Morton – 160,400
8.    Kevin Saul – 153,600
9.    Geoffrey Cudd – 142,900
10.    Barry Hutter – 139,300

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