Yesterday saw 96 entries into the $25.3k One Drop Mega Satellite creating a $2.4 million prize pool. With only one definite seat up for grabs the second placed finisher would have to be put at the bottom of the alternates list and most likely instead receive $1 million in prize money.
As you might expect with a large buy in event the field was packed with Poker Superstars (some of whom had already committed to enter the One Drop tournament regardless of winning a satellite, including Phil Ivey, Sam Trickett, Jason Mercier, Brian Rast, Betrand Grospellier, Eugene Katchalov and Jens Kyllonen) all looking for a bargain basement price to enter the One Drop for a chance at taking down the biggest prize in poker tournament history - with a huge $18,900,000 guaranteed for the first place finisher.
Big names failing to make the final table include all of the above (except Trickett who finished 9th and Grospellier who fell in 5th) included Luke "fullflush" Schwartz, Viktor "Isildur1" Blom, Matt Glantz, David Benyamine, Isaac "philivey2694" Haxton, Brian "$tinger 88" Hastings, Justin "ZeeJustin" Bonomo & Erick Lindgren.
It wasn't all big names however as a few unknowns managed to navigate the superstar minefield to make the final table, including 6th place finisher Steve Meling who had already won two satellites to make it this far from an initial investment of just $65!
In total the tournament lasted twelve hours with the final table taking around 2.5 hours. Other than Hansen, Trickett, Grospellier and Meling we also had bracelet winner Jason Somerville, online tournament legend Shaun Deeb, amateur Hani Anwad, this years EPT Grand Final High Roller winner Igor Kurganov, WPT winner Will Failla, and Alex Bolotin also made the final table.
As the final table got underway with Deeb in front with 1.65m with Hansen in 2nd with 1.1m. Hansen soon took the upper hand however, eliminating Alex Bolotin in 10th place when Hansen's AK managed to outdraw Bolotin's JJ. This hand put Hansen at 2.2m. As the final table progressed and more players started to fall, Hansen increased his lead and soon after busting $65 qualifier Steve Melling in 6th he held over 3 million chips. However, Shaun Deeb soon caught up, first busting Betrand "ElkY" Grospellier in 5th spot with his AQ catching another Q on the turn to beat Grospellier's JJ and then taking a +700k pot from Hansen to assume the chip lead. The top two stacks were faily equal during four handed play with Deeb eliminating Will Failla in 4th before Hansen took a decent chip lead when he busted Somerville in a 1.8m chip pot when Somerville shoved with K 10 only to have Hansen look him up with A4. The Ace on the flop was unecessary but sealed the deal.
The players took an unscheduled break prior to heads up play and pretty obviously decided between themselves what the outcome was going to be as Deeb opened the first hand of play by raising to 3.24 million (leaving him one 5k chip), being called by Hansen and then insta-folding to Hansen's 25k flop bet despite being given odds of around 1,300-1 to call! Deeb went out the very next hand and is more than likely to receive $1 million in prize money whereas Hansen clearly wanted the seat in tonights huge tournament.
The final list of Players is now set and can be seen here at the wsop website.
HighstakesDB will be back later with a look at the final few entrants to make themselves known over the past couple of days.