Chris Moneymaker is seated in the Pavilion Room. His table is right in the middle of the room, not located near the rail and with no fans clamoring to get a glimpse. Besides the PokerStars patches, Moneymaker has the desired tendency to blend in like any other player. He's no Doyle Brunson. He's no Phil Ivey. He's no Daniel Negreanu. But he is the reason just about everyone in the Rio is here.
The 10-year celebration of Chris Moneymaker's victory may reach a pinnacle tomorrow when he announces the "Shuffle Up And Deal," but for the most part, it has been all business for Chris. He has always operated with a calm demeanor and today is no different as he begins his main event journey once again. He has been talkative at his table during the first few levels, but the chips haven't come easily. His downswing started early, holding only 10,000 at one point during the first level and since that time, he has oscillated between 10,000 and 20,000 in chips to own one of the shorter stacks at his table.
Chris Moneymaker in action on Day 1B.
So how does Moneymaker celebrate his decade of poker stardom? He's getting a massage at the table for the very first time.
Moneymaker's presence at the WSOP is as pivotal as Doyle Brunson's. Both represent the history of the game, obviously Doyle's being of the much-greater fashion, but for the fans that walk the hallways, they are two icons of what the WSOP is all about. Moneymaker's life changed in 2003 and the lives he has changed from that point on is countless. In all reality, I'm probably not writing this blog without Chris, so for that, I'll say thank you Mr. Moneymaker once again and good luck in your quest to making a deep run here in the 2013 main event.
There were 1,942 players on Day 1B giving the WSOP main event a two-day total of 2,885. WSOP organizers expect a huge day on Monday, but topping last year's turnout of 6,598 should be the goal at this point.
Small blinds: Greg Mueller spent a few minutes explaining how staking works to the rest of his table. ... Tables are beginning to break in Pavilion. The majority of Amazon and Brasilia are still filled with main event players. ... The rail for the Event 60 bracelet is growing as six players remain. Loni Harwood is leading the final six and looking for her first bracelet. ... Congratulations to Brian Yoon, champion of the Little One for One Drop Event 58. Yoon earned $663,727 for the victory. ... Eighteen players remain in the $10,000 pot-limit Omaha event with Daniel Alaei leading. Sound familiar? Yeah, Alaei won the same event just a few years ago. ... Terry Fleischer recorded the first knockout of the day. Then he was eliminated a level later. ... Paul Pierce is expected to play in the WSOP main event on Day 1C. ... The portion of the Amazon Room where I'm sitting smells like a buffalo wing. Weird. ... If you want an entertaining follow today, check out @thinkingpoker, which is giving updates from the feature table with Doyle Brunson. ... The afternoon mega-satellite had more than 1,000 players once again. That room is printing WSOP seats and money for Caesars. ... Water coolers are located around the playing areas as a way to encourage players to not drink the bottles of water delivered to each table and instead opt for a reusable bottle. ... The Day 1A Poker Edge podcast is out and features Greg Merson, Joe Cada and Tony Dunst. Listen here. ... The hallway outside of the Amazon Room is filled with retailers trying to sell everything from electronic cigarettes to poker books to fresh oxygen. It's amazing how this area has changed so dramatically since the 2010 WSOP, when the primary vendors in the area was online poker sites. ... For more on Moneymaker throughout the day, check out Bluff's coverage. ... Doyle Brunson is off to a good start with 50,000 in chips. ... Greg Raymer has been eliminated. ... During the most recent break, a player proposed to his girlfriend on the stage of the Brasilia Room and she said yes. Congrats! Hopefully his main event cash will pay for the wedding.