The World Series of Poker November Nine has been set, but the last man cut nearly paid off big-time for WSOP bettors.
2001 Main Event champ Carlos Mortensen finished 10th, just missing out on becoming the first man since Dan Harrington in 2004 to return to the Main Event as a past champion.
Online sportsbook Sportsbook had posted 7/1 odds on any former champion making the Final Table. So oddsmakers were sweating it out, risking a hefty payout if The Matador made it through.
The fact Mortensen pocketed $573,204 for his 10th-place finish surely takes some of the sting out of it.
American J.C. Tran arrives as the chip leader, but not by a lot. Expect him to be named a sight favorite to win based on his professional pedigree and 38 million stack. He is one of five Americans in the group of nine, with David Benefield and Mark Newhouse arriving as small stacks (around 7 million chips each).
Amir Lehavot, an Israeli who cashed at three WSOP events this summer, is the second biggest stack with just under 30 million. Canadian Marc McLaughlin is third, just ahead of Americans Ryan Riess and Jay Farber who each have nearly 26 million.
Frenchman Sylvain Loosli sits sixth, while Dutchman Michiel Brummelhuis is seventh with 11 million.
Once again, the last cut turned out to be as newsworthy as the nine who made it. A year ago, Gaelle Baumann finished in 10th place, narrowly missing becoming the first woman since Barbara Enright in 1995 to make the final table.
The November Nine odds (2013 WSOP - Odds to win the Main Event) are:
J.C. Tran (38, 000, 000) 9/5
Amir Lehavot (29, 700, 000) 9/2
Marc McLaughlin (26,525,000) 5/1
Ryan Riess (25,875,000) 6/1
Jay Farber (25,975,000) 15/2
Sylvain Loosli (19,600,000) 8/1
Michiel Brummelhuis (11,275,000) 12/1
Mark Newhouse (7,350,000) 15/1
David Benefield (6,375,000) 15/1
Seat 1: Sylvain Loosli - France - 19,600,000
Seat 2: Michiel Brummelhuis - Netherlands - 11,275,000
Seat 3: Mark Newhouse - USA - 7,350,000
Seat 4: Ryan Riess - USA - 25,875,000
Seat 5: Amir Lehavot - Israel - 29,700,000
Seat 6: Marc McLaughlin - Canada - 26,525,000
Seat 7: JC Tran - USA - 38,000,000
Seat 8: David Benefield - USA - 6,375,000
Seat 9: Jay Farber - USA - 25,975,000
All nine are guaranteed mammoth payouts for surviving seven days of grinding in Las Vegas at the Rio. Here are the prize money payouts courtesy of PokerNewsDaily.com:
1st – $8,359,531
2nd – $5,173,170
3rd – $3,727,023
4th – $2,791,983
5th – $2,106,526
6th – $1,600,792
7th – $1,225,224
8th – $944,593
9th – $733,224
The November Nine finale will be televised at the Penn and Teller Theater Monday, November 4th through Tuesday, November 5th.