Tensions were high in the Amazon room for one of the biggest days of the WSOP. The Main Event money bubble. It came and went fast as the day started with 746 players, only 53 places away from the money bubble. Everyone knew that cashing the Main Event was right around the corner when they started the action in Day 4. For an unlucky few, they missed out on a minimum payday of $18,406 and will have to wait another year for a shot at cashing in the Main Event. A few of the notables that started the day but just missed out on the money include the 1996 Main Event champ Huck Seed, Max Pescatori, Dario Sammartino and Hasin Habib.
Hand-for-hand play began when the money bubble was reached and it only took one hand for a player to bust and burst the bubble. In fact three players busted in the one hand that was dealt to each table. Those three players shared 693rd place and each received a third of the $18,406 prize money. As customary, the bubble boy would receive a seat to next year's Main Event. The only problem was that there were three bubble boys and only one seat. To decide who would receive the seat, the three players would each draw one card at random and the highest card would take home the seat. Zhen Cai was the luckiest of the unlucky bubble boys and he drew the highest card. He will be returning next summer for a shot at redemption.
For many, the goal was cashing. Now that that's been accomplished, everyone has their sights set on becoming a member of the prestigious November Nine. Speaking of the November Nine, Mark Newhouse is the only November Niner remaining in the field. Newhouse was part of one of the most talked about hands up to this point. Newhouse knocked out an opponent right on the money bubble when he turned quads as his opponent turned a full house. Newhouse edged out Phil Ivey as the last November Niner remaining in the field. Ivey had a strong start to the tournament and ended Day 2 as the chip leader. It started to look like he couldn't be stopped, but Ivey couldn't find the magic in Day 4 and busted in 430th place for $25,756. It was still a successful summer for Ivey as he earned his tenth WSOP gold bracelet by winning the $1,500 Eight Game Mix event.
The chip lead changed hands several times throughout the day, but when played ended Matthew Haugen had the most chips in front of him with 2,808,000 chips. Although Haugen has the chip lead, he still has a lot of work left to do with a handful of tough players closely behind. Dan Smith and Griffin Benger sit with 2,229,000 chips and 2,329,000 chips respectively. Both Smith and Benger started the day with top 20 chip stacks and were able to stay hot. They are now both in the top 10 chip counts and will be two of the players to keep an eye on as the final table inches closer. Other notable players to end the day with chips include Leif Force, Brian Hastings, Martin Jacobson, Rep Porter, Mukul Pahuja, Maria Ho and Jeff Madsen.
As some players were building towers, others were busting out. Some of the notable players to make the money but not finish the day with chips include Olivier Busquet (641st), Ben Yu (611th), Vinny Pahuja (575th), Faraz Jaka (333rd) and Dermot Blain (316th). There will be 291 players returning for Day 5. Everyone returning for Day 5 is guaranteed to cash for at least $33,734.
Here is a look at the top ten chip counts heading into Day 5:
1. Matthew Haugen - 2,808,000
2. Zach Jganti - 2,364,000
3. Griffin Benger - 2,329,000
4. Michael Finstein - 2,316,000
5. Bruno Portaro - 2,289,000
6. Dan Smith - 2,229,000
7. Andoni Larrabe - 2,195,000
8. Kyle Keranen - 2,157,000
9. Farid Jattin - 2,122,000
10. Pakinai Liswad - 2,088,000