Prize money doesn't dull the pain at the WSOP Main Event

13 July 2015

LAS VEGAS -- There's no good way to bust out of the World Series of Poker Main Event. But some ways are a lot worse than others -- a lesson Heinz Kamutzki learned the hard way on Day 5 of the World Series of Poker Main Event.

Kamutzki's day started innocently enough. He arrived at the Amazon Room, skateboard and backpack in hand, before cards went in the air -- a feat some of his fellow players couldn't accomplish.

The German-born player who now lives in Austria had 506,000 in chips to start the day, and with the blinds at 8,000-16,000, he had a little bit of room to play. And with 237 players still in the tournament, there was a chance he could move up a few pay grades, or even double up and give himself a chance at a final table run. So he cracked open what looked to be a very healthy breakfast of scrambled eggs and fresh fruit, with a couple of drinks in styrofoam cups, straws in place, ready in waiting.

Just as he shoveled the first bite of food into his mouth, he went all in on a coin flip -- and lost. Kamutzki, who has more than $1 million in live tournament winnings according the Hendon Mob database, seemed unperturbed by his elimination, and continued to eat his breakfast. Then WSOP officials asked him to report directly to the elimination zone so his bust out could be recorded.

David Peters is fourth in chips at the WSOP Main Event with 6.13 million.

David Peters is fourth in chips at the WSOP Main Event with 6.13 million. (photo by Vin Narayanan, Casino City)

"Can I finish eating please?" Kamutzki asked, visibly frustrated. "All of my stuff is right here," Kamutzki added, pointing to his gear and food.

WSOP officials were sympathetic, but firm. One even offered to carry his belongings for him. But he needed to report his elimination right away.

Kamutzki slid his gear to an empty table next his and walked to the elimination zone, breakfast in hand. After reporting his bust out, he skipped the payouts line and returned to the empty table that had his things and finished his breakfast in peace. He had plenty of time to collect his $34,157 in winnings.

At least Kamutzki's exit from the Main Event was swift and merciful. Kyle Loman's abrupt Main Event ending was much worse.

In consecutive hands during the second level of play Sunday, the poker gods tore Loman's Main Event dream to shreds like a direwolf getting its first meal of the winter. On a board reading 7c-9d-Kd, Loman check-raised all in with pocket nines. Anthony Venturini called with pocket aces, and it looked like Loman was about to pick up a very big pot with three nines. But an ace on the river sent the pot to Venturini and left Loman hanging by a thread.

On the next hand, Loman used his remaining 110,000 in chips to call an all-in bet with pocket fours. Once again he was ahead in the hand. His opponent had 10x-5x. A board of Kx-7x-7x-9x-Kx gave his opponent the better two pair on the river and ended his tournament dreams. A shell-shocked Loman finished in 166th and won $40,433.

Former Main Event champion Jim Bechtel was eliminated from the tournament Sunday.

Former Main Event champion Jim Bechtel was eliminated from the tournament Sunday. (photo by Vin Narayanan, Casino City)

It was a tough day for several other notable players in the field, such as former Main Event champion Jim Bechtel (121st, $46,890), Jake Cody(113th, $46,890), Matt Glantz (146th, $46,890), Antonio Esfandiari (168th, $40,433), Vitaly Lunkin (119th, $46,890), Lily Newhouse (138th, $46,890), Dan O'Brien (186th, $40,433) and Vivek Rajkumar (197, $40,433).

While 168 players saw their Main Event dreams end Sunday, several players made a move up the leaderboard. Pierre Neuville leads the tournament with 7.105 million in chips. David Stefanski is second with 6.48 million, and Thomas Paul is third with 6.14 million. David Peters with 6.13 million and Mozheng Guan with 6.03 million round out the top five. There are 69 players remaining in the tournament. The Main Event champion will win $7.68 million.

Daniel Negreanu ended the day in 22nd place with 3.62 million in chips. But it wasn't an easy journey. Negreanu spent the day playing at the ESPN featured table, and early in the day, he struggled to gain momentum. Negreanu started the day with 1.335 million in chips. His chip stack dwindled to about 520,000 before he regained his mojo and chips began flowing his way.

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