2021 WSOP Day 1: Series Underway With Star-Studded $25k H.O.R.S.E.

The 2021 World Series of Poker finally began yesterday, with three events getting underway, and it was a good start for Florida poker pro Chad Eveslage who bagged the chip lead in Event #2: $25,000 H.O.R.S.E.

Eveslage is coming off the back of a series of cashes over the last month, and looking to improve on his best WSOP performance – a deep run in the 2014 Main Event for $103,025.

Away from the H.O.R.S.E. the first two winners of the 2021 WSOP will be crowned later today, with both the Casino Employees and COVID-19 Relief Charity Event playing down to a winner.

Meanwhile, two more events begin today, with cards in the air in both The Reunion (10am PT) and the $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better (3pm PT).

2021 WSOP Live Reporting Hub

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Leo Abbe

For the first time in 26 months, the poker world came together at the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino for the start of the 2021 World Series of Poker.

The $500 Casino Employees Event took its traditional role as the opening event of the WSOP, with 419 entries generating a prize pool of $175,980. After 17 40-minute levels on Day 1, around 50 players survived to Day 2 with their dream of capturing the coveted gold bracelet still alive.

Leading the way is Leo Abbe, a Sportsbook Promotions Associate with DraftKings. Abbe took two big pots off former chip leader Juan Carlos Latuff towards the end of the night to finish with 537,000.

Other big stacks include Shawn Weintraub (474,000), Roberto Reyna (461,000), Andrew Bart (422,000), and Akash Desai (415,000). PokerNews’ Jesse Fullen (pictured) survived the day with 223,000.

Jesse Fullen

Not everyone was fortunate enough to make it through to Day 2. Chad Holloway, the 2013 champion of this event, busted on Day 1, as did 2019 Main Event fourth-place finisher Garry Gates and WSOP Executive Director Ty Stewart. PokerNews team members Connor Richards, Matt Hansen, and Dannah Kamp also hit the rail.

The remaining players will return at 12 p.m. PST tomorrow in the Amazon Room. The schedule calls for them to play down to a champion. Be sure to stay tuned to PokerNews for what will surely be a packed day of action.

Read More: Big Names Expected in WSOP 2021 High Roller Tournaments

Chad Eveslage

The 2021 World Series of Poker kicked off with a bang by scheduling a $25K H.O.R.S.E. directly on the opening night. Day 1 of Event #2: $25,000 H.O.R.S.E. consisted of ten intense 60-minute levels of play, and at the end of the night, Ft. Lauderdale, Florida poker pro Chad Eveslage sits atop the chip leaderboard with 860,000 in chips.

Eveslage remained quite active throughout the day, capitalizing in key spots and on key hands on his way to the top of the leaderboard.

Today’s event attracted 73 total entries, with 47 players headed to Day 2. John Monnette (589,500), Jean Gaspard (569,000), Jesse Klein (490,500), and Mike Matusow (421,500) all bagged up solid chip stacks.

Needless to say, plenty of the world’s very best are left in contention as well, with Daniel Negreanu. Phil Hellmuth, Shaun Deeb, Benny Glaser, and Adam Owen being just a handful of the big names that advanced to Day 2.

Join us on PokerNews on Friday at 2 p.m. PST as the hunt for the coveted WSOP Gold Bracelet will continue. Registration for this event will remain open until the first card is dealt on Day 2, and the prize pool and payouts will be announced shortly after registration has closed.

Mike Matusow

Top 10 Chip Counts

Rank Player Country Chip Count
1 Chad Eveslage United States 860,000
2 John Monnette United States 589,500
3 Jean Gaspard United States 569,000
4 Jesse Klein United States 490,500
5 Mike Matusow United States 420,500
6 Adam Friedman United States 420,500
7 Chris Vitch United States 371,500
8 Shaun Deeb United States 321,000
9 Hal Rotholz United States 314,000
10 Randy Ohel United States 295,000

Late registration in this event is open until the start of Day 2, with players allowed one re-entry. The tournament resumes at 2pm (PT) and plays ten more 60-minute levels.

WSOP 2021: What’s New this Year at the Rio?

Jesse Lonis

Event #3: $1000 Covid Relief No-Limit Hold’em Charity drew 266 players, paying the top 38 places. With one hundred dollars from every buy-in benefitting frontline health workers, $25,000 was raised in total on top of the $231,400 prize pool.

After 9 hours of play, Jesse Lonis ended the day as the chip leader with 2,285,000 chips. Jeremy Ausmus sits in second with 1,395,000, while Asher Conniff (755,000), Steve Gross (485,000), and Mitchell Halverson (385,000) round out the final five.

2021 WSOP Event #3 Final Five Players

Seat Player Chip Count
1 Jesse Lonis 2,285,000
2 Asher Conniff 755,000
3 Mitchell Halverson 385,000
4 Steve Gross 485,000
5 Jeremy Ausmus 1,345,000

The tournament drew big names such as Ryan Reiss, Matt Stout, and Jeff Platt, but all of them left the tournamnet area empty-handed.

The final table was reached in rapid fashion as the rate of eliminations came in at a breakneck pace, taking the field down from three tables to the final table in little more than an hour. Ian Steinman (18th Place) and Pete Chen (17th Place) were two of the notables to hit the rail during this stretch of play.

A double elimination that took out Kevin Wang and John Yocca in one fell swoop to set the final table, a hand which gave Lonis a huge boon to his stack to enter the final table with.

Eugene Tourevski next went out in eighth place, Craig Mason fell in seventh place and one time big stack Litan Betito was the final victim of the night, succumbing in sixth place to end the proceedings with five remaining.

The final five return on Friday at 4 p.m. PST to play down to the winner. Make sure to tune back in to PokerNews as the first bracelet winner of the series will be crowned.

The Reunion Headlines WSOP Day 2

One of the most hotly anticipated tournaments of this year’s WSOP gets underway later today with the first of three flights in The Reunion. Massive $5,000,000 guarantee.

The first two bracelet winners will be crowned today in the Casino Employees and Covid-19 Relief Charity Events.

Time (PT) Event
10:00 Event #4: $500 The Reunion Flight A
12:00 Event #1: $500 Casino Employees Day 2
14:00 Event #2: $25,000 H.O.R.S.E. Day 2
15:00 Event #5: $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better
16:00 Event #3: $1,000 Covid-19 Relief Charity Event Day 2

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