LAS VEGAS -- The main event dream is over for Antonio Esfandiari, Ben Lamb, Tom Dwan, David Sands, Maria Ho and Sam Trickett. Day 2C began with 2,308 players, but in a matter of seconds that number of began to dwindle. Esfandiari went out just six minutes into play and appeared to have set the tone for the rest of the level, which featured a couple hundred eliminations. I'm not sure patience exists right now at the Rio. Someone who wasn't a victim of fast play was 2007 main event champion Jerry Yang, who was coolered as he ran K-K into Chris Tryba's A-A early in the level. There are certain spots you aren't going to avoid early in this tournament and Yang ran into one of them.
Even though they weren't knocked out, the first two hours were tough for Michael Mizrachi, Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu and Joe Hachem. Four of the most well-known players in the world struggled and the storyline of the stars shining from Day 1C may be quickly coming to an end. Phil Hellmuth chipped up slightly through conservative play, an approach we often see from him on Day 2 of the main event. Negreanu has been looking for any sort of spot to double up, but hasn't found it. With the blinds at 300/600 with a 75 ante and only 13,000 in chips, he'll need to get more active soon.
Mark Kroon retained the lead during the first level and remains one of only a few players who have over 200,000 in chips in this field.
Small Blinds: Daniel Negreanu's table is once again on the rail. You'd think this placement is rigged or something. ... After not showing up for all of Day 1, both Tom Dwan and Gus Hansen took their seats on Day 2. Dwan doubled up once before his elimination, while Hansen remains in the contest. Hansen told his table that he made some money playing cash games instead of coming to the main event on Monday. ... The ESPN production crew is doing training today at the feature tables. We start filming the main event on Thursday. ... Men are going into the women's restrooms due to the extensive lines. That's probably not ideal. ... The tables will break from the Pavilion into Brasilia today, with the Amazon Room most likely staying intact. ... The WSOP has created a radio booth in the center of the Amazon Room and one of the local radio stations in Vegas will be broadcasting live from the event on Thursday. ... Laura Green and Scott Born are sharing a table today. And are on their honeymoon. For the sake of their marriage, I hope one does not bad beat the other. ... Sam Holden has over 100,000 in chips. The 2011 main event final table participant finished 55th last year. Only Joseph Cheong has a better recent record than the young British star. ... Miss any action from Day 2AB? Listen to the Poker Edge, which recaps the day and interviews Doyle Brunson, Greg Merson and actor Kevin Pollak.