Mix game advocate Daniel Negreanu helped invent the $50,000 Poker Players Championship and now he’s within five players of winning his 7th bracelet in the event.
Negreanu is at the six-player final table and holds the chip lead with 5.9 million chips.
High-stakes master Isaac Haxton is second with 5.2 million and fellow online crusher Elior “Crazy Elior” Sion isn’t far behind with 4.7 million.
The final table is rounded out by German Johannes Becker (4.5m), Austrian Ivo Donev (2.9m) and American Paul Volpe (1.5m).
The $50k PPC offers one of the biggest first-place payouts of the year at $1.4m but every player left in the tournament has already locked up $220k.
Here’s a complete look at the chip counts for the final six:
1. Daniel Negreanu — 5,930,000
2. Isaac Haxton — 5,205,000
3. Elior Sion — 4,750,000
4. Johannes Becker — 4,560,000
5. Ivo Donev — 2,990,000
6. Paul Volpe — 1,570,000
Looking for Lucky Number Seven
Negreanu is in the midst of a very solid WSOP with nine cashes and three final tables. He’s also in the top 20 in the Player of the Year race but will no doubt get a healthy boost from wherever he finishes in the $50k Players Championship.
His performance is magnified by the fact he’s been shooting a round-the-clock vlog from the WSOP for the first time ever.
Negreanu was part of the player’s council that helped come up with the concept of the $50k Poker Players Championship (originally the $50k H.O.R.S.E.) back in 2006.
At the time it was the biggest buy-in WSOP event ever held but has since been past by the gargantuan $1m buy-in Big One for One Drop.
Negreanu has had mixed results in the $50k PPC, coming in 12th place in 2016 and 13th in 2008, but never making the final table.
The Canadian was nearly out of the tournament on Day 3 as he got knocked down to just 1.5 big bets. Negreanu survived, however, and one day later took hold of the chip lead.
Near Miss for Deeb, Ashton
The final six nearly included two more extremely well-known mix game players in Shaun Deeb and Matthew Ashton.
Deeb, who’s renowned for nine Championship of Online Poker titles, was the Day 4 bubble boy coming in seventh place.
Meanwhile Ashton, who was in a dogfight with Negreanu to win the 2013 WSOP Player of the Year title, ended up coming seventh place.
Of course all eyes will be on Negreanu in the final six. Negreanu is looking for his seventh WSOP bracelet and first since 2013.
A victory in this one would also put some much needed distance between Negreanu and Erik Seidel on the all-time money list.
Negreanu currently sits #1 with $33.7m but prior to this summer Seidel had been gaining on Kid Poker and was within a million of the top spot.
The final six in the $50k PPC will resume play at 2 p.m. in Las Vegas today.