Jonathan Jaffe Leads WPT Foxwoods Heading into Day 3

With 249 of the original 412 players left in the field at the World Poker Tour’s World Poker Finals at Foxwoods, it looked as though they would need quite a bit of time to work down to the final table, which is scheduled for Tuesday. The rash of bust-outs that occurred on Day Two on Friday, when the two Day One fields came together for the first time, seems to have quelled any problems that they will have in that endeavor.

Jason Potter and Phil Ivey were neck and neck as the action began on Friday, with other notables in the top ten in chips such as defending WPT Player of the Year Jonathan Little, Kevin Saul, and Full Tilt Poker pro Gavin Smith attempting to climb the leader board. With so many players with deep chip stacks, it was presumed that there would be a great deal of grinding. What happened was the exact opposite, as many players went into “double up or go home” mode early during play.

Almost from the start, players were being eliminated left and right with some of the biggest names in the game being a part of the carnage. Recent WPT final table player Stephen Van Auken, Chad Brown, and Poker News Daily’s resident columnist Bernard Lee were some of the notable names swept up in the wreckage. Players who hit the rails wouldn’t be limited to just those lower on the totem pole; some of the first day leaders exited Foxwoods as the furious action continued.

Ivey yo-yoed his way throughout the day and finished with nearly the same chip count that he had at the start. Meanwhile, Day One overall leader Jason Potter battled his way through the field and remained high on the charts until he was taken out in two hands. It would be another member of the top ten that would take over leadership of the tournament before play closed on Friday.

Jonathan Jaffe, who made an excellent run at this year’s World Series of Poker $10,000 No Limit Heads-Up World Championship before finishing fourth, ground his way to emerge as the leader. After starting the day in sixth place, he ended it with 522,000 in chips to grab the top slot on the leader board:

1. Jonathan Jaffe – 522,000
2. Larry Greenberg – 370,200
3. Arthur Azen – 350,000
4. Charles Marchese – 322,700
5. Freddy Deeb – 258,400
6. Chris “Jesus” Ferguson – 239,800
7. Ron Kirsch – 227,600
8. Ray Lynn – 224,100
9. Toto Leonidas – 214,200
10. Kevin Saul – 199,700

Other notable names still in the running include not only the aforementioned Ivey and Smith, but also Daniel Negreanu, Erik Seidel, David “The Dragon” Pham, and Anna Wroblewski.

What is stunning about the action on Day Two is that, out of the 249 players who started the day, only 91 remained to fight as Day Three gets ready to begin at noon on Saturday. WPT and Foxwoods officials had counted on a slower attrition rate and, with three days of play scheduled before the final table on Tuesday, it could mean shorter playing days, as the money bubble and final table will be achieved much sooner than normal.

While it is possible that the tournament could break the money bubble on Saturday, it is expected that we should see the play slow down somewhat. Poker News Daily will have all the information as the battle at the Foxwoods Resort Casino in Connecticut rages on, trying to find the latest champion for the World Poker Tour.

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