WSOP 2021 – The Reunion
Paul and I are extremely excited to be back in the thick of WSOP action after a two-year break. We are spending the month of October in Las Vegas playing a couple of WSOP events along with some tournaments at other card rooms about town. We arrived on Friday and immediately traveled to the Rio for our vaccine status clearance and to purchase into the significantly-anticipated Reunion event.
Registration for The Reunion was an odyssey of its personal. At the beginning of the first WSOP in two years, the staff was understandably a bit confused. Every single time we asked a employees member a question (such as exactly where do we get our vaccination confirmation slips), we got a diverse answer. We finally located a really skilled lady at the Rewards Card desk who had all the answers.
Then we located the registration line. Pro Tip 1: as long as you have completed the CLEAR app registration, you require not stand in any other line ahead of you buy-in. At 7 pm in the evening of the 1st registration day (so Flight A is closed and B and C are still to come), we waited for two hours to get our seat cards. Rumors have it that players waited up to six hours the previous day when all cages had been not yet open. Pro Tip 2 (not a single we did): if you want to strategy for a number of flights (or multiple separate events), you can buy them all at as soon as, and then if you did bag-and-tag on Day 1, you can get the other flights/events refunded (of course before they start).
Excited to get seated the subsequent morning, we arrived at the Rio 20 minutes early. Tournament area doors had been all closed. We swiftly learned that play in the Reunion started half an hour late on Day 1A. Luckily, we only had to wait about 15 minutes past ten to hear that magical phrase “shuffle up and deal!” and we had been underway!
For a tournament that starts with 50,000 chips and enjoys 30 minute blind levels, (a dream for amateur cardroom players), the Reunion moved quick. This was partly since the massive blind ante started at Level 1. Another factor was the omnipresence of pros and severe amateur players which led to some relatively aggressive play from these unafraid to rebuy. Serious players, from Dan Shak to Qui Nguyen, Barry Greenstein, and Matt Berkey were heavily sprinkled all through the room. If you sat down at a table and believed you recognized someone poker renowned, you most likely did.
It was about 12 hours from the tournament start to the funds bubble, and much more than 15 to the finish of Day 1. That is a looong time to sit in a very uncomfortable chair and play poker. The exhaustion, nonetheless, was tempered by many breaks (and strategic mid-level trips to the restroom, avoiding the crowds). And, of course, the excitement of playing in a four,400 player tournament field with pros, semi-pros, and excellent amateurs.
Sadly, I went out about an hour and 200 men and women just before the money. Paul, nonetheless, with some strong coaching by Steve Blay, produced it to the funds at about ten:30 in the evening. He did not last into Day 2, but recovered most of both our get-ins. Most importantly, we each got to experience the excitement of a WSOP bracelet event. Seeing the childlike excitement of very first-time WSOP players as soon as the bubble burst alone was worth it.
The Reunion occasion all round seems to be a smashing good results, with 12,975 entrants more than the 3 flights. Day 2 (nowadays) will see the 638 survivors (a shade beneath five% of the field).
Hopefully, this is the very first of many bracelet events we play this month. We appear forward to sharing our experiences with the APT community.