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Monday - PokerStars Caribbean Adventure - Day 3

Poker Action and More Poker Action at the Atlantis - Reigning Champion Exits the Tournament

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Isaac Haxton, a 21-year-old Brown University Computer Science major, ended day 3 of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure as the clear chip leader with $3,754,000. When asked who his most formidable challenger was going into day 4, Haxton replied, "Jonathan Little because he'sIsaac Haxton got a lot of chips and he's a hard guy to read." Little is second in chips with $2,084,000.

Jonathan LittleThe PCA has become less of a Caribbean adventure and more of a poker convention. Despite the amenities the Atlantis has to offer, along with the spectacular Nassau landscaping, this tournament could have taken place in Guyana as far as 937 poker players were concerned.

There are 16 contenders left in the championship, which leaves 921 others pining for action. A few of them headed home after busting out, and some made the trek to Australia for the Aussie Millions, but it appears the other 915 stragglers are still in the Bahamas… playing poker.

The only participants sporting tans are those who came with their own, and even those golden glows are fading. "I haven't made it outside since I got here," said Mario Silvestri, currently in 14th place going into the final two tables.

Taking into consideration the hundreds of hours of PokerStars.com online freerolls it took to qualify for this event, and the number of Frequent Player Points a player needed to redeem for a chance to enter, and that online satellite buy-ins started at $2 - and, and, and… it all adds up to players investing a whole lot of time behind the monitor just to get here. And it's only gaining in momentum for those who committed themselves to capturing a seat in the prestigious annual PCA championship, with poker becoming a way of life - and the common bond between them here in the Bahamas.

The action never stops at the PCA. There's poker going on in the Beach Tower Ballroom with multiple tournaments running daily.

The Ballroom on Day 4 of the 2007 PCA

Poker is being played in lounges and lobbies, as dozens of enthusiasts utilize the wireless broadband provided by the Atlantis in select areas of the hotel.

Side Action in the Lobby of the Atlantis

Today also marked the beginning of the Battleship Poker Championship, a game in which players sit across from each other, each with his own laptop, and go heads up at a single-live table reserved by PokerStars specifically for the challenge. It's quite the spectacle, but bears a striking resemblance to what's been happening in the lobbies over the past few nights.

Battleship Championship with Ofer Stern Battleship Championship Table Barry Greenstein in the Battleship Championship at the Atlantis
And then there's this view from the Coral Tower, for those who visited Nassau but missed the spectacular scenery just outside the door.

Yacht Yard at the Atlantis


Monday - PokerStars Caribbean Adventure - Day 3


Antonio RibeiroTomorrow's returning 16 players are guaranteed to win at least $45,915, which is not a bad payday considering those remaining are online or satellite qualifiers.

Day 3 of the PCA started with 121 hard-core PokerStars.com enthusiasts, including reigning champion Steve Paul-Ambrose, who returned to defend his title. He and Justin Bonomo came in with over $400,000 in chips. The fourRobert Ford Johns, Jonathan Drane, John Hart, Johnathan Little, and Jon Friedberg, were right behind in the mid to high $300,000 range. The race was tight, and with the blinds at $2,000-$4,000 with a $500 ante, combined with the competition on the leader board, anything could happen. And it did.

Michael Binger doubled up to over $100,000 on the first hand of the day, putting him back in the race after coming in severely short-stacked. John Phan was in the same boat, but when he pushed his last $37,000 into the middle with Q-J, he didn't get the same results. Barry Shulman called with A-Q and both players missed the board, but Shulman's ace made the high card, sending Phan to the rail 30 minutes into the first round of the day. It marked the beginning of a whirlwind of eliminations to follow.

Ryan DautChris Martin, Dean Thurman, Brian Lindsay, Isaac Baron, Spenser Straub, James Campbell, and 22 other players were on the rail within an hour.

Shulman suffered several swings, and the landmines he successfully avoided over the last two days of play were somehow directly underfoot. Strong starting hands, like pocket kings, were literally blowing upScott Clements in his face. And though the "ladies" (pocket queens) pulled him out of a foxhole, they weren't enough to save him as Shulman soon went out in 93d place.

Hot on Shulman's heels were Adam Sanders, Anh Nguyen, Jason Strochak, Jon Brody, David Williams, Dapo Fadeyi, and Jonathan Hart. The blinds had only risen twice and the tournament was down to 74 players.

Four hours into the event another three tables had broken, with Pat Madden, Mark Levy, Glen Bean, Jimmy Law, Ann James, Curtis Householder, Thomas Rau, Patrick Fortin, and Spiro Mitrokostas swept from the roster. The tournament was into its third round of the day.

Paul LiuNenad Medic was taken down by Haxton when Haxton raised, Medic reraised, Haxton pushed all in, and Medic called before the flop. Medic had A-K and Haxton turned over a pair of nines, which held up against a board of rags. Medic was the 51st man out and the tournament was down to five tables.

Haxton was on a roll for the rest of the day, and past the $3 million mark at the start of theJustin Bonomo last level of the day. Defending champion Steve Paul-Ambrose was sliding in the other direction until Jimmy Fricke doubled through him and left Paul-Ambrose crippled. Fricke got his A-K cracked by pocket threes and went home in 22nd place. Paul-Ambrose was eliminated in 20th place, and respectful tournament, poker room, and audience members gave him a well-deserved round of applause. The tournament was down to three tables.

After the redraw, an insane rush of all-ins and calls eliminated a player from each table, and just as quickly as they took their new seats, they exited them. Kin Kwan, Claudio Rinaldi, and James Jewett closed the day for 16 players to return at noon on Tuesday.

Below are the remaining players and their chip counts.

1 Issac Haxton: $3,754,000
2 Jonathan Little: $2,084,000
3 Robert Mizrachi: $1,798,000
4 Antonio Ribeir: $1,532,000
5 Robert Ford: $1,313,000
6 Ryan Daut: $1,226,000James Jewett - photo courtesy of IMPDI2007
7 Scott Clements: $1,060,000
8 Justin Bonomo: $1,052,000
9 Frank Rusnak: $886,000
10 Paul Lui: $807,000
11 Jon Friedberg: $792,000
12 Joe Marcal: $629,000
13 Erik Riise: $620,000
14 Mario Silvestri: $548,000
15 Luis Chan: $433,000
16 Frank Parisi: $289,000

For more detailed coverage of day 3's exciting action, check out CardPlayer.com's live updates. And stay tuned to CardPlayer.com for complete multimedia coverage of the 2007 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure from the Atlantis Hotel Resort Casino, with live updates (including chip counts), photos of players, and activities, video clips, and interviews, along with nightly audio streams of The Circuit.