October is here. It is the end of baseball season, football is in full swing, and the final table of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event is just one month away. This time next month, throngs of poker fans will be filing into Penn and Teller theater to see who will be crowned the next World Champion.
Tonight on ESPN though, there are still 68 hopefuls returning for Day 6 with their sights set on just making the final table. With just eight tables left in the field, these players are close enough to November that they are starting to think about what it would mean to join the elite group of players who have played on poker’s biggest final table stage.
Carlos Mortensen and Steve Gee are already members of this highly selective fraternity, but that doesn’tmean the 2001 Main Event Champion and last year’s ninth place finisher aren’t eager to get back and repeat or best their success. For others, like Marc-Etienne McLaughlin of Canada, this run marks an opportunity to do what the likes of Ben Lamb has accomplished—make another deep run, but this time make the top nine.
McLaughlin has had more than one close call in the big show. Two years ago, he made it all the way to 86th place before busting out of the event. In 2009, he took 30th place. Moreover, he has watched as fellow friends and French Canadians made deep runs. He cheered on Marc-Andre Ladouceur last year and, in 2010, he was on the rail as Jonathan Duhamel became Caanada’s first World Champion.
On Day 6 we have players looking for the repeat, players looking for redemption, and we have pros looking for recognition as well. Yevgeniy Timoshenko, Jim Collopy, Jackie Glazier, David Benefield, and two-time bracelet winner JC Tran are just some of the players who were notable before the Main Event even got underway. Their poker accomplishments are certainly impressive, but nothing compares to winning this bracelet and it is a dream come true for even the most accomplished poker player.
One pro still fighting for a spot at the table is Brett Richey. He already memorably knocked out last year’s winner Greg Merson on the coverage a couple weeks back, but that is just one of the highlights for Richey this season on WSOP on ESPN. In fact, his talents extend beyond the tables.
The pro from New York City has put his rap skills on display for the poker world before. Tonight , he throws it down and joins the likes of Prahlad Friedman and Jeff Madsen on the list of rappers featured in the television coverage.
You can see Richey, McLaughlin, Mortensen and more tonight on ESPN at 9pm ET. Follow along with us as we watch and tell us what you think using the hashtag #WSOPonESPN. In the meantime, tell us what you think of Richey’s musical talents: