I’d like to sincerely (but probably pointlessly) apologize to Aaron Duczak for not noticing he was from the Pacific Northwest (specifically, Kamloops, British Columbia) until he was on the final table of the WSOP Main Event. There is nobody who would have liked to make more of the fact that this year’s Main Event had two players from the PNW in contention for the $10M top prize than myself.
The combined population of the states and provinces I track in the PNW Poker Leaderboard—Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Alkaska, British Columbia, and Alberta—is about twenty-three and a half million, smaller than the population of California (38 million) or Texas (28 million), and just a bit more than that of Florida (21 million) but here we had two players who weren’t long-established pros at the final table of the biggest event of any poker year. Pretty cool.On top of that, both Angela Jordison and Stuart Young* were on the Day 4 feature table on PokerGO for a long period with the man everyone was talking about at the time, Zilong Zheng, Five players from the PNW cracked the spots between 100 and 200 in the Main Event. * And Vancouver, Washington’s Ali Imsirovic.
Though they now list online WSOP bracelet events, Hendon Mob doesn’t factor them into the rankings, so Gallagher’s 5th place finish last month in the WSOP ONLINE 2022 PLO 6-Max—a $1K buy-in with 470 entries—doesn’t affect the standing.
Las week on the PokerGo Podcast, co-hosts Tim Duckworth and Donnie Peters were discussing the oft-repeated theory that playing the last day of the WSOP Main Event was the best way to run up a big stack.
As it happens, I’d taken a look at that assumption in an article at PokerNews back in 2015 (just a few months before I interviewed for a job there with Donnie and Matt Parvis, as a matter of fact).
In that article, I charted end-of-day chip stacks against entrants, breaking each day’s finishers into six groups: top 10%, 70% to 90%, 50% to 70%, 30% to 50%, 10% to 30%, and bottom 10%.
There wasn’t any statistical correlation between the number of entrants on each day and the stack distribution that I could find, the biggest end-of-day stack between 2011 and 2015 was on a Day 1A (2012). In 2011, the biggest ending stack was on Day 1A, and in 2014 the biggest stack on 1A was larger than on 1B despite a field only a third the size.
The other groupings remained very consistent. The first decile (bottom 10%) topped out consistently around 45% of the starting stack. The fourth decile (40%) had just over starting stack. The median at 50% was about 120% of starting stack, etc.
I wasn’t particularly surprised when I ran numbers for 2016 to 2022 (2020 excluded). This time, I used a percentage of starting stack to represent the end-of-day numbers, because the number of chips went from 50,000 to 60,000 in 2019. Again, everything except the top 10% is very consistent. And again, earlier starting days with fewer entries have outperformed larger fields: 2017 Day 1A had the largest end-of-day stack; the same thing happened in 2019.
Where there is a definite correlation is in the number of players that survive each day. Larger fields have a larger percentage of the field surviving to Day 2. Of the 20 starting days from 2016 to 2022, the range of survivors was from 67% to 77%, and the percentage of survivors on Day 1A was never more than 72%. The percentage of survivors on the last day—Day 1C until 2019 and Day 1D in 2021 and 2022—was never lower than 75%.
While there was only a 3% difference in the number of survivors between the first and last starting day in 2019, in each of the other years, there were between 5% and 9% more entering players making it to Day 2. Only on 2022 Day 1C were there more survivors on a later starting day.
So if you’re looking for a reason to play the last entry day for the Main Event, that’s your reason.
Tomorrow’s the last entry day for this year’s World Series of Poker Main Event and as I’m still in Portland for a variety of reasons, it looks like another year that I’m not playing it. Good luck to everybody luck enough to be playing today (Steve Roselius) and tomorrow, and to the folks that have already made it through to Day 2 (Angela Jordison and Jackie Burkhart, among others)! Wish I was there to at least rail.
Key to the Leaderboard
Name and home town (according to the player’s Hendon Mob profile).
The player’s most recent ranking in the PNW Poker Leaderboard in italics. If this is their first time on the Leaderboard, an em dash (—)
Their new standing in bold, preceded by the pound sign (#).
Their change in status on the Leaderboard (with an arrow indicating up or down), or a black club (♣) if this is their first appearance.
For each of the tournaments that are being recognized in this Leaderboard:
The name and link to the Hendon Mob listing for that tournament.
The player’s finishing position in the tournament and thge number of entries.
This cash wasn’t as large as some of the others this far down the list (which is roughly ordered by the total amount of winnings reported in this period) but Mufti racked up four other smaller cashes over the last couple weeks of June, and two more on the first two days of July.
If you’ve got a sharp eye, you might be wondering: “Hey, there are three WSOP Deep Stack results shown, with the same number of entries, and players in the top three positions, were they all from the same day?” If so, you’d be correct, because Hassell, Kriventsov, and Gates were the PNW trifecta on 20 June.
This individual result was just over the threshold to get on the Leaderboard, but Mackoff is another of the serial cashers appearing here, with twelve WSOP cashes (both live and online) in June, as well as a cash at the Venetian.