The first episode featuring WPT Main Event action aired last night across the country on FSN and its regional networks. WPT Legends of Poker: Part 1 took viewers from the first opening minute of the $10,000 buy-in tournament, guiding them through the ups and downs of Days 1 to 3 and finally arriving at the WPT televised final table.
Day 1A of the event drew 322 entrants, including WPT Champions Club member Dwyte Pilgrim as well as notable poker pros Faraz Jaka, Matt Affleck, Phil Hellmuth, Season IX WPT Player of the Year Andy Frankenberger, Allen Kessler, Amit Makhija, WPT Season IV Player of the Year Gavin Smith and WPT Raw Deal host Tony Dunst. Day 1B saw 435 players pony up the cash to play in this prestigious event, many of them re-entries from Day 1A.
With 757 total entrants (322 on Day 1A and 435 on Day 1B), the total prizepool came out to $2,570,015. The final 81 players finished in the money, and first prize is worth $758,085. There were 181 players eliminated on Day 1A, and 116 players of those re-entered on Day 1B. Some of those re-entrants survived Day 1A, but forfeited their chips to try again on Day 1B. The 757 total entrants counts some players more than once; there were actually only 641 unique individuals in this event.
Day 2 ended with 99 players left in the field with retired school teacher Ken Aldridge leading the way and Will Failla two spots behind him. On Day 3, the money bubble burst and notable names taking home a check included Jamie Gold, Smith, Tran, Little, Cody Slaubaugh, Matt Berkey and WPT crew member Keith Kozar. The day ended with 21 players remaining and Jeff Vertes leading the way.
When the final six that would comprise the WPT TV final table were set, the field had shed several more talented players like Christina Lindley, James Carroll, Dan Heimiller and bubble boy Ray Henson.
The start of the WPT Legends of Poker final table marked the beginning of the tenth season of final table commentary by WPT Hosts Mike Sexton and Vince Van Patten. See their introduction of the final table players below:
Joining Mike and Vince for final table commentary and analysis were WPT Anchor Kimberly Lansing and WPT Sideline Reporter Matt Savage.
The final table started with some serious fireworks as Owais Ahmed pushed all-in on the very first hand with pocket sixes, testing Adam Aronson, who folded his hand not wanting to get into it so early in final table play. There were several more hands that highlighted this first episode of WPT Season X and one of the biggest involved some interesting Razzy-worthy acting from Jeff Vertes, which resulted in a minor blow up from Will Failla. You can see that hand in our previous profile on Vertes: WPT Season X Player Profile: Jeff Vertes.
Ahmed was the first player eliminated from the Legends of Poker final table, earning $77,100 for his sixth place finish. With five players remaining, Aronson doubled up through Failla on the last hand of the episode, capping a great start to the historic tenth season of WPT on TV.
Make sure to tune in next week, or set your DVRs, at 8:00pm and 11:00pm local time* on FSN for WPT Legends of Poker: Part 2 as we get closer to crowning a new Legend of Poker.
* check local listings