WSOP ROUNDUP: Main Event Underway, Numbers Remain Strong, Players Support Mike Sexton

The Main Event is underway in the World Series of Poker Online and the entire festival wraps up on Sunday. It’s been a big two months for the series at and GGPoker, and just a few day remain.

Over the last week, there have been some nice scores including the $25,000 Poker Players Championship. The numbers remain strong and a Canadian also made headlines – breaking through for his first major cash and a bracelet.

Along with the game on the virtual felt, many players expressed support for poker legend Mike Sexton. The poker world learned he’s been battling prostate cancer. 

Here’s a look at some of the WSOP news over the last week.

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Entry numbers dip, but prize pools and payouts vault higher after Main Event

While the number of entries dipped by about 400 on average, prize pools remain strong. A nice turnout for the $5,000 Main Event helped that situation.

The series has seen an average of 3,999 entries over the last week with a $2.7 million prize pool. That’s an increase of more than $600,000.

The average winner payout has moved to about $392,000. A pair of $1,000 events added to those totals with some small buy-in events also mixed in.

Here’s a look at averages from the series as well as a complete list of winners and statistics:

Tournament averages

  • Entries – 3,999
  • Prize pool – $2.7 million
  • Winner payout – $392,000

Series totals

  • Entries – 193,743
  • Prize pool – $124,572,601
  • Winner payout – $18,428,024

* Figures as of Sept. 2. For complete facts and information about the WSOP Online, including Twitch streams, click here.

EventBuy-inTotal entriesPrize poolWinner payoutWinnerCountry
#32: The Opener NLHE$10029,306$2,696,152$265,880Marcelo Jakovljevic PudlaBrazil
#33: Every 1 for Covid Relief$1,1112,323$2,580,853$343,204Alek StasiakCanada
#34: Super Turbo Bounty NLHE 6-Handed$5252,214$1,107,000$117,650Shoma IshikawaJapan
#35 Pot Limit Omaha Championship$5,000328$1,558,000$306,622Juha HelppiFinland
#36 FIFTY STACK NLHE$1,5001,342$1,912,350$297,496Michael ClacherSouth Africa
#37 Bounty Pot Limit Omaha$1,050971$971,000$161,887Hun Wei LeeAustralia
#38 Monster Stack NLHE 6-Handed [Asia Time Zone]$6002,007$1,143,990$171,389Aaron WijayaChina
#39: NLHE [Asia Time Zone]$1,500922$1,313,850$216,213Roberto RomanelloUnited Kingdom
#40: Pot Limit Omaha$2,500532$1,263,500$224,493Klas LofbergSweden
#41: COLOSSUS$40012,757$4,796,632$595,930Ranno SootlaEstonia
#42: PLOSSUS$4004,356$1,637,856$221,557Yuri DzivielevskiBrazil
#43: Short Deck NLHE Championship$10,000301$812,700$276,393Lev "LevMeAlone" GottliebUnited States
#44: NLHE 6-Handed$2,500892$2,118,500$356,412Kristen BicknellCanada
#45: Bounty NLHE$8402,382$1,906,500$245,448Patrick "Muddington" KennedyUnited Kingdom
#46: Deepstack NLHE$5002,307$1,095,825$189,098Sung Joo "ArtePokerTV" HyunSouth Korea
#47: Short Deck NLHE$1,000487$462,560$88,202Paul TeohMalaysia
#48 MILLIONAIRE MAKER$1,5006,299$8,976,075$1,489,289Daniel DvoressCanada
#49 Turbo Deepstack$5002,978$1,414,550$192,523Vladas "apuokos" BurneikisLithuania
#50: Bounty Championship$2,1001,168$2,336,000$327,319Enrico "GTOExploiter" CamosciItaly
#51: Pot Limit Omaha$4002,005$753,880$100,945Eoghan "DrRoche" O'DeaIreland
#52: NLHE$1,0002,006$1,905,700$273,505Alek StasiakCanada
#53: Double Stack PLO [Asia Time Zone]$800831$631,560$94,253Frank CrivelloUnited States
#54: Heads-Up Championship$10,000128$1,241,600$360,480David PetersUnited States
#55: NLHE Asia Time Zone ChampionshipHK$8,0003,247$3,184,074$458,261Luis Eduardo Assuncao GarlaBrazil
#56: GGMasters WSOP Edition$1502,153$3,068,025$444,869Seth FischerUnited States
#57: GGMasters WSOP Edition$1509,835$1,357,230$183,526Anatoly "Pohitrusha" SuvarovRussia
#58: NLHE 6-Handed Championship$5,000672$3,192,000$531,513Ravid "jerbi9999" GarbiIsrael
#59: NLHE Double Stack$2,5001,061$2,519,875$399,047Leonardo "Babaehduro" MattosBrazil
#60: $525 Bounty NLHE 6-Handed$5253,170$1,585,000$180,177Orhan "yirtil" AtesTurkey
#61: Monster Stack NLHE 6-Handed$3003,491$973,989$127,660Alexander "MightyWarior" StaceyUnited Kingdom
#62: Pot Limit Omaha$1,500990$1,410,750$220,160Bradley "DrStrange7" RubenUnited States
#63: Mini Main Event$50015,205$7,222,375$843,460Ivan "zufo16" ZuficCroatia
#64: Super Turbo Bounty NLHE$8402,207$1,765,600$131,461Kartik "Mandovi" VedIndia
#65: NLHE Deepstack$6002,911$1,659,270$227,906Dmytro "Too Bad" BystrovzorovUkraine
#66: Pot Limit Omaha$8001,281$973,560$139,453Toby JoyceIreland
#67: NLHE$500706$335,350$45,101Gregor "soulsntfaces" MullerAustria
#68: Deepstack NLHE [Asia Time Zone]$5002,315$1,099,625$150,460Yan Shing TsangHong Kong
#69: Marathon NLHE$1,5001,438$2,049,150$302,472Nick "rdcrsn" MaimoneUnited States
#70: NLHE Poker Players Championship$25,000407$10,000,000$1,800,290Christian RudolphGermany
#71: BIG 50 NLHE$5044,576$2,050,496$211,282Huahuan "F7588" FengChina
#72: Limit Hold'em Championship$1,500337$480,225$77,475Ajay "Ross_Geller" ChabraUnited States
#73: NLHE 6-Handed$1,0002,202$2,091,900$299,511Jim 'grousegrind" LefterukCanada
#74: Pot Limit Omaha$1,500972$1,385,100$215,938Thi "HoneyandTHI" TruongVietnam
#75: Double Stack NLHE$3003,552$991,008$130,100Trygve "FullSendWig" LeiteItaly
#76: FORTY STACK NLHE$4004,4611,667,366$227,186Gediminas "NeverGambol" UselisLithuania
#77: NLHE Main Event$5,0005,802$27,559,500$3,904,686* event not yet finishedNA
#78: Turbo 8-Handed$1,0001,910$1,314,500$259,842Adnan "Bolazar" HacialiogluFinland
Average (9/2/20)3,999$2,650,481$392,086
Average (8/26/20)4,363$2,026,475$295,205
Average (8/19)3,641$2,134,553$313,654.00
Averages (8/11)3,830$1,997,347$299,896

$50,000 Poker Players Championship draws poker elite with American winning $3.9 million

The $50,000 Poker Players Championship is one of the biggest events each summer at the WSOP in Las Vegas. This summer the $25,000 Poker Players Championship has taken its place, although with a NLHE format rather than mixed games.

The event came with a guaranteed prize pool of $10 million. Austria’s Christian Rudolph took the title for $1.8 million and his first bracelet.

Last year, Rudolph finished runner-up in the €25,500 NLHE Super High Roller at the WSOP Europe for $596,703. He now has some vindication in another big buy-in event and more than $4 million in tournament winnings.

Other big finishers included: Chris Hunichen (runner-up, $1.3 million); Shankar Pillai (third, $979,138); and Jason Koon (seventh, $285,808).

Canadian conquers with first major cash – and wins a bracelet in the process

No Hendon Mob cashes, no GGPoker cashes – no problem. At least that was the case for Jim Lefteruk. He took down the $1,000 NLHE Six Handed event for $299,511.

Not much is known about this player but he now has a massive score and a WSOP bracelet. His victory proves that just about anything can happen in the world of poker.

Lefteruk also adds another win for his home country. That now stands at five as the Canadians try to close the gap on the Americans.

GGPoker Main Event becomes a smash hit

Only 38 players remain in the field in the $5,000 Main Event and battle today in the final day of play. Beyond a bracelet, there’s quite a bit to play for.

The event already came with a $25 million guarantee but attracted 5,802 entries for almost a $28 million prize pool. The winner hauls in $3.9 million.

When action resumes, Bryan Piccioli leads the field. Poker fans probably recognize that name. He finished sixth in the 2017 Main Event in Las Vegas for $1.7 million.

Piccioli is now seeking his second bracelet after winning a WSOP Asia Pacific event in 2013. Adding this title and another massive score would certainly be nice for his poker resumé.

Players express support for Mike Sexton

Many in the poker world turned their attention to longtime World Poker Tour analyst Mike Sexton on Tuesday. The poker player has been battling prostate cancer, according to poker player Linda Johnson.

She’s been in contact with Sexton and was authorized to release the news via Twitter. The cancer recently spread to other organs, she said, and he began in-home hospice care a month ago.

Many players expressed their support and affection for the popular “ambassador of poker.”

“Jan Fisher and I read your tweets to Mike Sexton today and he asked me to thank you all so much for your love and support,” Fisher noted on Tuesday. “He is too tired to personally answer emails, texts, and tweets but he wants you to know he is touched by them. Mike has requested privacy at this rough time.”

No stranger to success at the WSOP, Sexton has $2.7 million in series winnings in a poker career stretching back to the 1980s. He won a bracelet in 1989 and also added a WPT title in 2016.

Beyond his work with the WPT, Sexton worked as a partypoker founder and serves as chairman of the company. Players expressed their appreciation and support for Sexton throughout Tuesday.

“It’s hard to overstate the impact Mike has had on our world,” Erik Seidel Tweeted on Tuesday. “His enthusiasm and love for poker has been so infectious and pure, he  changed the game forever. I hope he feels our love and appreciation.”

In 2009, Sexton was elected to the Poker Hall of Fame and released his autobiography Life’s a Gamble in 2016. His impact on poker has been much bigger than the game on the felt.

US, Canada pulling away in battle of nations

The battle for the country with the most bracelets remains basically a two-country race. The United States is still at the top spot with seven with Canada two spots behind with five. 

Both countries collected another win over the last week. American Ajay Chabra won the $1,500 Limit Hold’em event for $77,475. Canada’s Jim Lefteruk won the $1,000 NLHE Six Handed for $299,511.

A couple other countries entered the standings with wins over the last week as well. Italy, Finland, and Lithuania all now have two bracelets and here are the complete standings.

Bracelets by country

  • US – 7
  • Canada – 5
  • Brazil – 4
  • United Kingdom – 3
  • China – 2
  • Italy – 2
  • Lithuania – 2
  • Finland – 2

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GGPoker leaderboard standings

There has been a change at the top of the bracelet leaderboard. After winning the $25,000 Poker Players Championship, Christian Rudolph has overtaken Canada’s Daniel Dvoress, who slides to second.

Here’s a look at the complete leaderboard:

  • 1st – Christian Rudolph (Austria), 7,566.31
  • 2nd – Daniel Dvoress (Canada), 6,513.57
  • 3rd – Alek Stasiak (Canada), 6,174.40
  • 4th – Ivan Zufic (Croatia), 5,719.69
  • 5th – Ravid Garbi (Israel), 5,450.71

The winner receives a solid gold computer mouse trophy, and second through fifth earn a solid gold playing card.

A golden dragon is awarded to the player winning the WSOP Asia Time Zone leaderboard. Brazil’s Luis Assuncao still leads that race.

Bracelet hunting wraps up this weekend

Just a few days remain in the WSOP Online with events finishing up on Sunday, Sept. 6. The $5,000 Main Event finishes up Saturday, but a few other events also stand out.

Players will find two people’s choice events this week and GGPoker has announced what those will be. Look for a $600 NLHE Six-Handed on Wednesday and a $1,050 NLHE Bounty Six-Handed on Thursday.

Also, the $1,050 Beat the Pros bounty event on Saturday should attract a nice field. The pros-as-bounties angle adds to the fun.

Sunday brings a wrap to a few events with big guarantees. The $10,000 Super MILLION$ with a $5 million guarantee and the $100 MILLION$ ($2 million guaranteed) will both crown a winner.

Lastly, the $500 Closer aptly puts a bow on the series. Players will have one more shot at a bracelet and should attract a nice player pool. here’s the complete schedule of remaining events:

DateEvent NumberTournamentBuy-inPrize GuaranteeNotes
Wednesday, September 02, 202048People's Choice Event [Pros Vote]TBATBATBA by Vote
Thursday, September 03, 202049People's Choice Event [Spin the Wheel]TBATBATBA by Vote
Saturday, September 05, 202050People's Choice Event [Most Popular]TBATBAAsia Time Zone, TBA by Vote
Saturday, September 05, 202051$1,050 Beat the Pros [Bounty]$1,050
Sunday, September 06, 202052$10K WSOP Super MILLION$, $5M GTD$10,000$5,000,0002-Day Event
Sunday, September 06, 202053$100 WSOP MILLION$ [Final Day], $2M GTD$100$2,000,0002-Day Event, 1-RE Flights
Sunday, September 06, 202054$500 The Closer [LAST CHANCE]$500

* Mike Sexton photo courtesy WPT/Joe Giron

* WSOp Las Vegas photo courtesy WSOP/Joe Giron