The 2018 World Series of Poker Main Event is into rarified air as just 109 players remain from the original 7,874 after Day 5. Michael Dyer has a significant lead, holding 12.180 million chips; his closest competitor, Brian Yoon, has just 8.395 million. One other player has over 8 million and two have eclipsed the 7 million plateau.
Perhaps the most interesting part about Monday was the severe storms that moved through the area just before midnight. In what may have been a first for the WSOP (I can’t remember a full blackout in the last decade and a half, at least), the power went out, causing the Amazon Room at the Rio to descend into darkness. At that point, gamblers jumped onto tables, sweeping up as many chips as they could find, taking advantage of the opportunity to grab a fortune while they couldn’t be identified.
Wait, sorry, that last part happened at the MGM Grand in the movie Ocean’s 11. At any rate, the lights did go out at the Rio at about 11:20pm Pacific time. Naturally, tables were in mid-hand, so players whipped out their cell phones and turned on the flashlights to continue playing by the 2018 version of candlelight. After the hands finished, the tournament went on a break, but when the lights could not be adequately restored, WSOP officials called it a night about an hour earlier than originally planned.
Dyer was doing well all day, but he made a massive jump a couple hours before the lights went out, eliminating a 2016 November Nine (RIP November Nine). Cliff “JohnnyBax” Josephy raised pre-flop to 110,000 chips and Dyer re-raised him to 315,000. Josephy then four-bet to 815,000, prompting Dyer to push all of his chips into the middle of the table. Josephy called instantly and it’s no wonder: he had pocket Kings. Dyer had A-K, both clubs, so Josephy was way ahead.
The flop was ten-high rainbow and the turn was low and took away any hopes Dyer had for a flush. The river, though, was the Ace of spades, pairing Dyer’s Ace and sending Josephy home earlier than he would have expected just a few seconds prior. Dyer was up over 9 million chips at that point.
Later, Dyer eliminated Natalie Teh to elevate his stack to more than 10 million. That elimination also meant that Kelly Minkin is the last woman remaining in the tournament. Minkin finished 29th in the 2015 WSOP Main Event.
Minkin isn’t the only player still in the tournament who recently made a deep run in the Main Event. Most notably, Benjamin Pollak (5.715 million) finished third in the Main Event just last year, fellow Frenchman Sylvain Loosli (3.715 million) placed fourth in 2013, and Joe Cada won the whole thing in 2009.
Day 6 of the WSOP Main Event is currently underway as they look to narrow the field to three tables. Hopefully the room remains bathed in warm light.
2018 World Series of Poker Main Event – Day 5 Chip Leaders
1. Michael Dyer – 12,180,000
2. Brian Yoon – 8,395,000
3. Jeff Trudeau – 8,305,000
4. Hari Bercovici – 7,650,000
5. Bart Lybaert – 7,530,000
6. Peter Campo – 6,935,000
7. Konstantin Beylin – 6,930,000
8. Paulo Goncalves – 6,840,000
9. Alexander Gross – 6,755,000
10. Artem Metalidi – 6,525,000