LAS VEGAS -- Day 5, also known as moving day. It's the day where chip counts swing massively and players try to position themselves for the home stretch. A total of 378 players returned to action on Saturday and as seen on ESPN2, the eliminations have been coming at a rapid rate. More than 90 players were eliminated during Level 19, leaving the main event with 282 players remaining.
One of the first November Niners, Darus Suharto, was one of the first eliminations on the day. Suharto, on the short stack, moved in with A-Q against Ray Henson's 10-10. It was a coin flip between the 12th-place finisher in 2007 and the sixth-place finsher in 2008 and Henson's pair would held knock out Suharto in 370th. Freddy Deeb, who battled against Daniel Negreanu numerous times on Day 4, moved in with A-K and was eliminated by the K-K of Andrew Webking.
Other Level 19 eliminations included Tom Braband, David Levi, Jordan Rich, Richard Lee, Jon Turner, John Cernuto and Alex Kamberis. Out of that group, Kamberis suffered the worst beat, getting all-in preflop with A-A against the K-K of Magnus Persson. The flop and turn came clean, but a river king sent him to the rail.
One of the biggest movers during the level was Daryl Jace who regained the chip lead for a moment after an aces versus jacks confrontation with Joshua Pollock. Jace has 2.4 million in chips at this point. According to Bluff, Sam Barnhart is the chip leader and is trailed by David Bach, Pius Heinz and Max Heinzelmann who all have more than two million at this point. The chip leader to enter the day, Manoj Viswanathan, had a rough first level and dropped to 1.5 million. Ben Lamb stayed relatively steady and chipped up to 1.8 million.
The feature table is one with incredible star power. Daniel Negreanu, Jean-Robert Bellande and Allen Cunningham are three of the most familiar faces in the poker world and they're doing battle on Day 5. Given his trend over the past few days, it was no surprise that Bellande's stack varied much during the level. His key bump came at the end of the level against Robert Lipkin. Bellande opened from the cutoff to 24,000 (blinds 5,000/10,000 with a 1,000 ante) and Lipkin called out of the small blind. The flop came 9s-Jd-Kc and the two checked to see the turn 10s. Lipkin led, Bellande raised, Lipkin shoved and Bellande called. Both held a queen for the straight, but Bellande had spades and was freerolling for the pot. Sure enough, a spade hit the river and Bellande won the pot to bring his stack up to 1.3 million in chips.
Other players who had good levels include Bryan Devonshire (1.5 million in chips), Alex Moore (1.3 million), John Hewitt (1.6 million) and 2007's 108th-place finisher Paul Spitzberg (1.8 million). Erick Lindgren, Sorel Mizzi, Eli Elezra, Andrew Brokos, David Sands, Jon Friedberg, Tom Koral, Joseph Cheong and Matt Stout are all still in contention.
Here's a look at the payout schedules estimated for the rest of the day:
Small blinds by Gary Wise: Early in the day, we took a look at the field in search of interesting seating assignments. Here's how some of the tables shaped up at the beginning of play: Table 302 has a number of familiar names; David "Doc" Sands, who along with girlfriend Erika Moutinho is still trying to become the first couple to get to heads-up play at the main event, Peter (not Andrew, nor the other Andrew) Feldman (1.1 million), who has won multiple WSOP circuit events; Richard Lee (now eliminated), the Texas businessman who finished sixth in the main event. The three were sitting side-by-side. ... Jon "Pearljammer" Turner, "Miami" John Cernuto, longtime pro David Levi and Ben "Benba" Lamb were sitting together. ... Mountinho is sitting with Christian "charder30" Harder and Andrew Brokos. Brokos is in the money for the fifth time in six years. We'll have a little more on his story for you in a bit. ... David Bach, who we featured today, is sitting with Max Heinzelmann, the man whose A-6 cracked Shaun Deeb's A-A on ESPN2 back on Day 3. Heinzelmann's put Deeb's stack to good use, building his own to over 1.6 million. ... Daryl Jace, who started the day with 1.85 million in chips, is at a table where no one else started with as much as 600,000. ... Sopranos star Robert Mcgreevy-Iler and tournament vet Ray Henson. Mcgreevy-Iler's survival has been extraordinary, as he's had less than half the average stack since mid-way through Day 3. ... Joe Tehan is sharing a table with former team UB member Bryan Devonshire. ... Former chipleader Patrick Poirier is at the same table as WSOP Circuit national champion Sam Barnhart. Barnhart started the day with 1,925,000. No one else at the table started the day with so much as an average stack. ...[By Andrew Feldman] Celebration alert: After hitting a miracle turn card, Mars Callahan ran outside the tournament area, grabbed a friend and continued to run around the room in celebration. No penalty was assigned, probably because he didn't say a word while on the floor. ... Of all my WSOP pet peeves - it's the loud breaking of tables during play. I know they need to clear the room, but do it during breaks. ...