The first day of the 2022 World Series of Poker is in the books and two tournaments are already either in the money or near it. The money, though, means very different things in the two events: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em and $100,000 High Roller Bounty No-Limit Hold’em.

Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em

As we would expect with most tournaments this year, the 2022 version of the traditional WSOP opener easily beat last year’s numbers. With things more back to “normal” this year, the $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold’em event attracted 832 players, just about doubling the 2021 total of 419. The total prize pool is $349,400, with 125 players getting paid and the winner cashing for $65,168.

The tournament is already in the money, as just 82 players remain after Tuesday’s Day 1. Two men have separated themselves from the pack a bit: Shaun Colquhoun with 885,000 chips and Arturo Jimenez with 848,000. Behind them are four players with over 600,000 chips.

Defending champ Jimmy Barnett is also still alive, so we’ll see if he can make a run to achieve back-to-back bracelets as the tournament concludes today.

Event #2: $100,000 High Roller Bounty No-Limit Hold’em

The World Series of Poker is not into gradual build-ups, as it put one of the best railbird events right up front. With a $100,000 buy-in and $25,000 bounties for every elimination, many of the biggest names in poker showed up on the Series’ first day.

And of course, like any high roller event, the field is small. The tournament only attracted 45 entries on Day 1, though registration is still open until the start of Day 2, which will be noon Pacific on Wednesday.

Justin Young leads the 15 remaining players with 3.565 million chips, followed by PokerGO Tour leaderboard mainstay David Peters with 3.085 million, and 2021 WSOP Main Event champ Koray Aldemir with 2.930 million.

Also still in the field are Ali Imsirovic, Phil Ivey, Erik Seidel, recent WPT winner Chance Kornuth, and Daniel Negreanu.

Because registration is still open, neither the prize pool nor the payout structure has been finalized, but clearly, with a field so small, only a few players will make the money. This is a three-day event; today’s plan is to play down to five players before finishing things up on Thursday.

Two more tournaments begin on Wednesday, as Paris and Bally’s Las Vegas start to fill up: Event #3 – $2,500 No-Limit Hold’em (freezeout) and Event #4 – $1,500 Dealer’s Choice Six-Handed.

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