Ari Engel Chasing Another Ring, Circuit Record

Friday was playdown day in the $1,675 Main Event at Harrah's Atlantic City. From a starting field of 370 entries, the 75 Day 1 survivors returned with the money bubble in sight on Day 2. The final 45 players earned a share of the $555,000 prizepool, though there are still nine more payouts to be determined.

Here are the official chip counts and seating positions for the finalists:

Seat 1. Ari Engel - 1,506,000 (75 bb)
Seat 2. Oliver Entine - 185,000 (9 bb)
Seat 3. Jared Jaffee - 326,000 (16 bb)
Seat 4. Joseph Liberta - 545,000 (27 bb)
Seat 5. David Cossio - 1,227,000 (61 bb)
Seat 6. Nenad Cvetkovic - 353,000 (18 bb)
Seat 7. Dorian Rios - 586,000 (29 bb)
Seat 8. Joseph Cappello - 356,000 (18 bb)
Seat 9. Robert Kuhn - 2,326,000 (116 bb)

Robert Kuhn has a massive chip lead with more than 100 big blinds in the bag, but he's facing a tough final table.

Fresh off a victory in Event #7, Ari Engel is going for his ninth WSOPC ring, which would tie him with Alex Masek atop the all-time leaderboard. Engel is one of the most consistently successful players in tournament poker, with 14 live victories in the past four years. His biggest score came just two months ago when he won the Aussie Millions Poker Championship for more than $1.1 million.

Engel isn't the only one to watch out for at the final table. Jared Jaffee won a WSOP Bracelet in 2014 in the $1,500 Mixed-Max event. He also has a World Poker Tour title on his resume, and more than $2.7 million in career live tournament earnings. Jaffee has his work cut out for him on Day 3, returning to action with the table's second-shortest stack.

Joseph Liberta has two gold rings of his own, and he narrowly missed out on a third the last time at Harrah's. Liberta final tabled this same Main Event last season, and he'll be looking to improve upon that eighth-place finish. Joseph Cappello has nearly $1.5 million in career live tournament earnings, and each of his two largest victories came in Atlantic City.

Each of the final nine are guaranteed to earn at least $11,544, but all eyes are on the gold ring and the $122,098 top prize. The final table begins today at 12:00 p.m. ET, and there will be hand-for-hand coverage on the live updates page.

Some notable finishes from Day 2 include Tom Dobrilovic (10th place), Vincent Moscati (11th), Brian Lemke (13th), Andy Frankenberger (16th), Brent Roberts (20th), and Asher Conniff (26th). Click here to see the full list of results so far.

Event #11 also began yesterday, drawing a field of 99 entries for the $580 No-Limit Hold'em event. The final table was reached during the middle of Level 17, and the bags came out for the final nine players. Cathy Dever is making her second final table appearance of this Circuit series at Harrah's after notching a fourth-place finish in Event #4. Dever will begin this one in fifth place with an average stack of just over 30 big blinds. Play resumes at 2:00 p.m. with $14,851 and a ring reserved for the winner.

Click here for the chip counts.

Things are starting to wind toward a conclusion at this stop, but there's still one more busy day of poker left. In addition to those two restarts mentioned above, the final ring event of the series will run from start to finish today. There's also a ladies' event, a nightly event, and a pair of WSOP satellites available.

The race for Casino Champion will also come to a climax today. Engel is the current leader, having locked up 50 points with his win in Event #7 and a minimum of 25 more for the Main Event run. That gives him a running total of 75 points and counting, moving him ahead of previous leader Chris Reslock and his 72.5 points. If Engel wins the Main, he earns an automatic entry into the WSOP Global Casino Championship, so that would create an opening for Reslock, Dever, or someone else to claim the title of Casino Champion. With three more rings left to be awarded, the race is still too close to call.

Here's what's on the docket for the final day at Harrah's:

Ring Events

 12:00 p.m. Event #12: $365 No-Limit Hold'em Turbo

  • Players begin with 10,000 in tournament chips
  • Levels are 20 minutes apiece
  • Late registration is available until the start of Level 9
  • Play continues until a winner is determined

Non-Ring Events

3:00 p.m. $250 Ladies Event
5:00 p.m. $130 Nightly No-Limit Hold'em (Re-entry)


4:00 p.m. $150 WSOP Las Vegas Satellite - Step 1
7:00 p.m. $1,100 WSOP Las Vegas Satellite - Step 2

Completed Events

Event #1: $365 No-Limit Hold'em Chris Reslock wins $16,502 (Story | Results)
Event #2: $365 No-Limit Hold'em   John Yanni wins $14,582 (Story | Results)
Event #3: $365 No-Limit Hold'em Turbo Chris Morse wins $13,203 (Story | Results)
Event #4: $365 Omaha Hi/Lo   John Creed wins $9,089 (Story | Results)
Event #5: $365 No-Limit Hold'em Re-entry Kalid Ali wins $31,216 (Story | Results)
Event #6: $365 Monster Stack Stephen Dees wins $20,303 (Story | Results)
Event #7: $580 No-Limit Hold'em Ari Engel wins $17,221 (Story | Results)
Event #8: $365 No-Limit Hold'em Six Max Joe Rodriguez wins $13,860 (Story | Results)
Event #10: $580 No-Limit Hold'em David Coppola wins $9,889 (Story | Results)


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