Welcome back to our second night of live blogging of the 2018 World Series of Poker Championship Event Final Table!

In the “old days,” when there was a live poker event like this – and televised – many in the industry would do what is called “live blogging.” Basically it was a way to watch the proceedings and inform the readers of what was going on in almost real time. Last night we did very well – that is, until the cellphone battery ran out! – but we’re back on a good, old fashioned laptop for Day 2 of the Final Table and we’re ready to take it from six to three players.

9:11PM (Eastern Time)

Dyer was a major thief during Thursday night’s play. As Tony Miles showed with his pocket Jacks there, it is important to play back and play back HARD against a chip leader who is getting frisky. That’s the only thing that will stop a serial chip thief from committing larceny.


In a blind versus blind situation, Aram Zobian didn’t have to make that move, but he was going to have to do something soon. Don’t know if an 8 6was really the spot to make that move (and against the chip leader Dyer), but give Zobian credit for having the chutzpah to push in and go down swinging.

Aram Zobian – Sixth Place – $1,800,000


That’s the second time now that Miles has been able to best Dyer in a pot. He’s slowly grinding his way up, although 66 million chips is nowhere near the monstrous 170 million stack that Dyer sits on. Could he be the challenger that can stop Dyer from a date with destiny?


With the short stack at the table, many people may be asking why isn’t Cada getting more active. To be honest, he’s not in desperate shape with his 26.425 million chips. That’s 26 big blinds, safe above the “push and pray” level he’d be at if it were 10 big blinds. The blinds will whip around that table quicker with the five-handed play, however.


Antonio Esfandiari in the analyst booth made an outstanding statement. These guys are playing quickly. They’re not sitting back and dwelling on a 9-3 for ten minutes and then folding. The hands are going to the muck quickly and hands are going across pretty rapidly – roughly 20 hands in 40 minutes. That’s pretty quick for a live tournament and ESPECIALLY the WSOP Championship Event.


Miles is going to hate himself for that fold later. Cada is going to be pushing with anything – in this case pocket fives – but Miles’ decision wasn’t a bad one. It would have been for about 40% of his stack and he knows he’s at the minimum racing with his pocket sevens. Toss in Dyer’s monster stack sitting in there waiting on him to act and the fold isn’t as bad as it would seem.


WOW! What a bold move by Cada there! The ONLY way he was going to win that hand was with the all-in move there on the river against John Cynn. It puts Cada into fourth place and Cynn drops to the basement. Cada’s dream of another World Championship is still alive!


The poker gods giveth and the poker gods taketh away. Cada had to feel good about his pocket tens there and Miles (holding Big Slick) might have thought that Cada was on another steal attempt. Don’t forget that Cada had pushed on Miles before when Miles actually had the better hand. Perhaps that was on Miles’ mind when he made the call and caught a King.

And just as soon as we said that the dream was alive for Cada, it has now been crushed.

Joe Cada – Fifth Place – $2,150,000


Down to four players, nobody is really what you would call “short.” Even Cynn on his 40 million stack has some operating room, some speculation he can do on some hands. We could be in for a long night, folks.


THAT was a HUGE HAND! For the first time in what seems like an eternity, Dyer isn’t our chip leader. Miles wakes up with pocket treys on the button and Dyer defends with a 4 3. The K-4-3 flop lights the fireworks and, by the time they put the five on the turn and another King on the river, there’s a new chip leader heading to the break.

Tony Miles, 182.625 million
Michael Dyer, 129.95 million
Nicolas Manion, 47.95 million
John Cynn, 33.25 million


It’s interesting to note the dynamics of the table after that big hand between Miles and Dyer. While Dyer seems calm, he seems like he REALLY wants to get “his chips” back from Miles. Miles, on the other hand, is playing more pots and trying to inch his stack further upwards. Meanwhile Manion and Cynn are looking for ANYTHING to get their tournament going.


Another stunning hand tonight. Cynn wasn’t going anywhere once he got four to the flush with his J 10 (and caught it on the river). The question is what was Manion thinking with the all-in bluff? He’s got to think of what his opponent has – deuces, a big Ace that paired with the nine? Manion’s move with his Q J just didn’t make sense.


That, fans, is what is called “a hand that plays itself.” The chip leader (Miles) raises with Big Slick, Manion on the short stack moves all in with pocket sevens and Miles calls. No great strategy there and Manion needed the chips. Now Miles isn’t the overwhelming leader he once was.


To say it has been a bit slow would be an understatement. The players all have chips and they’ve got time. While they have been mixing it up a bit, there’s been nothing noteworthy that has occurred. Miles is dominating and Dyer is trying to regain his Mojo. Cynn has been impressive, building up his chip stack, while Manion is looking for SOMETHING to get him back in the game.


Miles has cracked the 200 million mark in chips (219.6 million, to be exact), so we can safely say that he’s through to Saturday night. The other three men don’t even add up to 175 million in chips and Manion is on life support with his 20 million stack. This may take a while, but I don’t see Manion being around on Saturday.

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