2009 WSOP Main Event Day 1D Has Been Interesting

Phil Ivey's biological parents are here again to cheer on their son.

Phil Ivey's biological parents are here again to cheer on their son, Phil Ivey III.

Lots going on today. Here’s the rundown:

:: As you’ve likely heard by now, Day 1D has been officially sold out. They are not going to have an impromptu Day 1E, or alternates, or let any of those willing to plunk down $10k in. This is a shame since there were enough players ready to go that would’ve allowed the 2009 WSOP Main Event to break last year’s numbers.

:: Jeffrey Pollack and crew (hopefully a vlog coming soon) held a meeting with some of the shut out players where they accepted all the blame for the situation and at least tried to explain the logistical issues involved with letting them grind it out. PR head Seth Palansky stepped in and asked the 150 or so in attendance why they didn’t just play earlier on one of the non-sold-out-days. Good point, but it seems like SOMETHING could’ve been done to figure out a way to let these players play, bring in the $300,000 or so in revenue it would’ve generated for Harrah’s, and given a great PR boost to the WSOP. If the 2009 WSOP Main Event could’ve broken last year’s numbers, poker would prove to be recession proof from The EconomyTM.

:: Funny tweet from Change100: Things for shut-out amateurs to do w/their 10k: 1.SAVE IT 2. pay off credit cards 3. get out of your hick town and see the world 4. pai gow

:: Despite the day being sold out, there still is not an official numbers count on entrants. Expect that around 6pm PT.

:: Phil Ivey was asked to play the featured table, but turned it down. Why? Word is he’s been playing in Bobby’s Room non-stop the past two days (big cash games have picked up) and just didn’t want to deal with it. Sucks for the people at his table, who lost out on a shot to make this a freeroll from getting patched up. In related news, Ivey is one of the early chip leaders, already more than doubling up to 71,000.

:: Lots of talk about “preferential treatment” of “name” players who might’ve gotten shut out from entering but still managed to get in the field. On one hand, we don’t care. Every sports/gaming league plays to its favorites or stars and that’s just life. On the other hand, if true, it doesn’t look good and will get average Joe’s on the forums flaming.

:: Some smoking hot girls playing today and on the rail. Pics coming soon.

Get full Day 1D chip counts here.


7 Responses

  1. DicePanda

    July 6, 2009 5:28 pm, Reply

    “Seth Palansky stepped in and asked the 150 or so in attendance why they didn’t just play earlier on one of the non-sold-out-days. Good point, but it seems like SOMETHING could’ve been done to figure out a way to let these players play…”

    Something was done. Actually, four things that I know of:
    1. Day 1A
    2. Day 1B
    3. Day 1C
    4. Early registration.

    Apparently, helping them put their mittens on, holding hands and taking the “shut-out” participants to the Rio to do any of these four things wasn’t something Harrah’s planned to do. Since, you know, Harrah’s thought they were dealing with ADULTS.

    No sympathy whatsoever for these wannabe participants.

  2. Wicked Chops Entity

    July 6, 2009 5:51 pm, Reply

    Funny DicePanda you left out the important part in your requote of the extra revenue these registrants would’ve brought to Harrah’s, a company that is struggling to make a dime now, and the great PR boost it would’ve given the Main Event to break last year’s numbers. This was an unprecedented situation for the Main Event. Yes, there were logistical issues, and as Pollack and crew have done every year, things will improve and this won’t ever be any issue again. But again: 1) there has never been a Main Event sellout for the players to prepare for…yeah they could’ve played another day but it’s hard to anticipate something that hasn’t happened before, 2) letting them in would’ve assured last year’s numbers would’ve been topped, a great PR boost for the WSOP, 3) more money would’ve been added to the prize pool for the players, and 4) more money would’ve been generated for Harrah’s.

    Who loses in that scenario?

    • DicePanda

      July 6, 2009 9:31 pm, Reply

      First, I thank you for the reply. I didn’t expect it, and I appreciate it. I visit the site every day and always look forward it for a laugh, or pics of ridiculously hot women, or both. (Especially the angel from a couple of days ago…)

      Erm, I digress.

      I have no argument on your points re: public relations and the additional revenue. Your points are sound. However, if the WSOP had already stated that (officially) there would not be alternates allowed, then I can’t fault them for sticking with their policy. And I realize that the Diamond Harrah’s members, VIPs, and so forth will get special accommodation on this day. For many business reasons (customer service, ESPN recording them playing) they should. So, I have no issue with that, either.

      The question, I think, is with regard to how to address this issue in the future at the WSOP. Faced with a room full of upset people, I think Mr. Pollack was trying to be sincere in the moment, but I don’t think he’s accurate to say this “won’t happen again.” I understand why he made that statement in THAT room (been in a similar spot before, not fun, just like high school), and by almost all accounts I’ve read the WSOP improves operations every year, but I’m not sure how this WON’T be a problem again. Because, how does the WSOP solve the would-be participants from themselves and their own procrastination?

      Physical space and manpower IS limited, and allotted for a finite number of days over 2 months of events. I think it’s extremely impressive that they could deal 3,000 players today. Which means they could have conceivably done a main event of upwards of 12,000 people this year, IF the entries had been spread out over the four days. So, I think the answer cannot be to add additional Day Ones, because what’s to stop this from happening again on the last Day One every year?

      For now, I suggest two options for the future. The first would be to allow alternates each Day One of the main event. That does lead to a question of how many each day and for how long does the WSOP accept them on that day, and the chance seems likely that some people would still be shut out. on the last day.

      The second suggestion I have is to allow preregistration and walk-ups for all Day Ones EXCEPT the last one. The last Day One would be designated as walk-up registration ONLY, open the morning of the tournament at a designated time, and once that day is sold out, it’s sold out. That way, everyone on that last day would KNOW it is a first come, first serve, gamble. Also, it might avoid the incident with the PartyPoker qualifiers who were supposed to be preregistered on the last day, only to have a snafu that cast doubt as to whether they could play. Under this arrangement, they wouldn’t be registered on the last Day One available.

      I don’t think the habits of the would-be participants are going to change much, even after what happened today. Poker players still like to sleep in and procrastinate, especially when it comes to entering tournaments. (I’ve run a home one for some time, I deal with the same stuff on the obvious smaller scale.) I still think the “shut-out” players are in the wrong here, given the ample opportunity to play the last few days. Of course, the WSOP is going to take this into consideration in planning for 2010, but I find it silly the tempest in a teapot this is a bunch of should-be adults acting petulant for their own lack of planning. The customer is NOT always right (e.g. if they ask to alter the entire schedule of the next two weeks by “simply adding a Day 1E”), and sometimes customers should be “fired” by a business, especially if said business has been fair in how it offered its products and services.

      Poker is a gambling game — a fascinating game, yes, and one I enjoy personally, but not exactly the most “noble” of pursuits. It’s a shame that these would-be participants had to crystallize an example of that in spades.

  3. dc

    July 6, 2009 9:01 pm, Reply

    I agree too. that most people never thought they would be turned away.But why did so many people wait till the last day to play? Is it because of the Fourth of July being on a Saturday this year.

  4. Wicked Chops Entity

    July 7, 2009 10:32 am, Reply

    Dice, you make good points. However, seeing how the numbers were trending, they could’ve just suspended cash game play, freed up those tables, or dealt with the minimal amount of backlash of going 10-handed from the Andy Bloch’s of the world. While not necessarily “simple” solutions, it would’ve accommodated the extra entries.

    Anyway, we don’t see this happening again. They’ll figure it out next year.

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