A Look at Last Year’s Re-Entry

Event 2 Champion Ross Bybee

McKinney, TX resident Ross Bybee (pictured) laid claim to the re-entry title at last year's Choctaw Circuit series. The $580 buy-in, four-starting-flight event drew 2,209 entries (then the fourth-largest Circuit tournament event held) and earned Bybee a $168,433 first prize.

In all, the tournament took four days and more than 30 hours to complete.

"[It feels] amazing; spectacular; wonderful; everything you can think of and then some," Bybee told the WSOP in 2013. "I've won a lot of events and I've gotten little tokens, but this is my first real trophy. For it to be a ring means a lot.

Joining Bybee at the final table were two players who went on to final table the National Championship this past spring. They were, of course, Jonathan Hilton (the National Championship gold bracelet winner) and Nicolas Vaca-Rondon, who finished seventh in the season-ending event.

Here's a look at the other final tablists from Choctaw's 2013 re-entry event:

1st: Ross Bybee – $168,433
2nd: Michael Downing – $104,419
3rd: Matthew Bray – $78,685
4th: Pradeep Buddharaju – $60,085
5th: Jonathan Hilton – $46,345
6th: Nicolas Vaca-Rondon – $36,095
7th: Christopher Rauscher – $28,386
8th: Abraham Montenegro – $22,543
9th: Jay Diaz – $18,081

A more comprehensive look at the event is available on WSOP.com.

Turbo Continues High Turnout

The clock in today's one-day $365 no-limit hold'em ring event reads 445 players entered with about an hour-and-a-half of late registration still to go. Already, that number marks an attendance increase of more than 22 percent over last year's field.

We'll provide final prize pool information shortly after the registration desk closes.

Re-Entry in the Money

The record-breaking re-entry event — the second largest tournament in the Circuit's 10-year history — is down to 297 players and in the money.

Among those to navigate the minefield is Austin Buchanan. This cash marks his 11th of the 2013/2014 season, tying him with Drennon Rackley for the most in-the-money finishes this year.

The first few eliminations will be posted as soon as there's a lull at the payout desk

Sunday’s Schedule

Choctaw Resort

Day 4 of the Circuit series at Choctaw Resort starts up at 12 p.m. CST with the re-start of the record-breaking re-entry event and Day 1 of Event 4, a one-day $365 No-Limit Hold'em tournament.

The re-entry event is just shy of the money with 369 players remaining and 297 finishers earning a payday. Tim Campbell sets the pace with 336,500 chips, but will have to go through the likes of Sam Panzica, Drazen Ilich, Bryan Campanello and many other top pros if he hopes to earn gold.

Full start-of-day chip counts are available on WSOP.com.

Meanwhile, players in Event 4 start with 10,000 chips at the 25/50 level. Blinds increase every 20 minutes through the duration of the event which is slated to conclude in one day. Dinner break occurs around 6:30 p.m. and registration remains open through Level 8.

That's not all on tap for Sunday.

Event 5, a two-day $365 No-Limit Hold'em tournament, begins at 5 p.m. Like the one-day event, players begin with 10,000 chips at the 25/50 level, but they're afforded 30-minute levels to start and 40-minute levels after Level 12. Registration stays open until about 9:30 p.m. (the start of Level 9) and Day 1 wraps after Level 15.

Sunday's full schedule:

  • 9 a.m., $65 Mega Satellite
  • 12 p.m., Event 4, One-Day $365 No-Limit Hold'em
  • 12 p.m., Event 3, $365 No-Limit Hold'em Re-Entry, 369 players remain
  • 2 p.m., $65 Mega Satellite
  • 5 p.m., Event 5, $365 No-Limit Hold'em, Day 1
  • 7 p.m., $125 Nightly No-Limit Hold'em

Opening weekend is almost over, but it's not too late to make the trip to Choctaw and earn some gold!

Goodnight, Record Breaker

Choctaw Resort

Day 3 of the Choctaw Circuit series didn't see any gold rings earned, but don't let that fool you. Saturday, headlined by the final two start flights in the $365 re-entry event, was one of the busiest days in the Circuit's 10-year history.

Things began at 12 p.m. with Flight C of the $365 re-entry. The flight was the largest of the four starts, drawing 968 entries in all.

Action continued at 5 p.m. with the fourth and final Flight D, which topped out at 758. In all, the two-day, four-starting-flight event drew 2,867 entries, making it the second-largest Circuit tournament ever held.

A more complete look at Event 3's place in the record books is available a few posts below.

A total of 369 players punched their ticket to Day 2 and they return tomorrow to compete for the $122,567 first prize. Cards go in the air at 12 p.m. with blinds of 1,500/3,000 and a 300 ante.

Rest up! Sunday is fixing to be a marathon.

Re-Entry Combined Day 2 Counts

Level 15 came and went in Flight D and it's officially time to head to Day 2. The last of four starting flights advanced 106 bringing the total number of players left vying for the title to 369.

Tim Campbell leads the way with 336,500 chips heading to the 1,500/3,000 with a 500 ante level.

Cards go in the air for Day 2 at 12 p.m. Sunday with just the top 297 spots finishing in the money.

Top 10 Day 2 chip stacks:

First Name Last Name Chip Count
Tim Campbell 336,500
Scott Standridge 241,000
Richard Johnson 235,000
Carson Parker 231,500
Nathan Jessen 225,000
Mike Putaansuu 216,000
Waichaya "Mike" Siriboone 214,500
Cameron Huey 207,000
Mike Yaw 206,000
Joe Berry 201,500

Full chip counts and chip counts arranged by table are available on WSOP.com.

Re-Entry Draws 2,867, $122K to First

The much-anticipated number is in and it's one for the record books.

Event 3 at Choctaw Casino Resort, a $365 No-Limit Hold'em Re-Entry tournament, drew an astounding field of 2,867 entries. That number puts it firmly in second place on the all-time Circuit attendance leaderboard behind only the 3,001-entry field of Horseshoe Hammond in 2011.

The four-start flight event boasts an $860,100 prize pool that pays the top 297 finishers. The 297th-place finisher earns $765, while the nine final tablists pocket a score well into the five-figures — save for the tournament's winner who earns six figures.

The eventual champion pockets the lion's share first prize which totals $122,567. In addition, they'll walk with a Circuit gold ring and 50 points toward the Casino Championship.

Here's a look at the final table payouts:

Prize Pool

The full payout structure is available on WSOP.com.

Action in Event 3 began Friday at noon with a 638-entry opening flight. Things continued at 5 p.m. with a 503-entry flight. Saturday's flights followed suit, beginning at noon and 5 p.m., but both enjoyed a significant attendance increase over their predecessors from 24 hours prior.

Saturday's opener drew 968 and the 5 p.m. closing flight pushed the event into the record books drawing 758.

Notable events Choctaw's most recent re-entry surpassed in terms of numbers include two Palm Beach Kennel Club $1 million guarantee re-entries that drew 2,607 and 2,539 as well as Hammond's 2012/2013 and 2013/2014 re-entries that topped out at 2,498 and 2,496.

The fourth and final flight in Event 3 at Choctaw has about 90 minutes before Day 1 play concludes. At that time, the remaining players bag and head home for much-earned rest before joining the 263 that advanced from the first three flights.

Full chip counts from the first three flights are provided below and a combined Day 2 starters list will be made available shortly after Flight D wraps.

Re-Entry Flight C Sends 123 to Day 2

Flight C of Event 3, a $365 No-Limit Hold'em Re-Entry tournament, began at 12 p.m. with 968 hopefuls. Paired with Flight A's 638 and Flight B's 503, the third and largest flight thus far helped push the total entries over 2,000, topping it out at 2,109 with one flight remaining.

After 15 levels of play, Flight C narrowed to just 123 remaining. They'll join the 81 advancing from Flight A, 59 from Flight B and those from this evening's Flight D for Day 2 tomorrow at 12 p.m.

Cards go in the air to blinds of 1,500/3,000 with a 300 ante.

Registration is closed in the fourth and final flight and we'll provide final registration and prize pool information as soon as it's confirmed by tournament staff.

While you wait, here's a look at the top 10 chip stacks advancing from Flight C:

First Name Last Name Chip Count Table Seat
Richard Johnson 235,000 34 2
Carson Parker 231,500 31 8
Mike Yaw 206,000 27 6
Joe Berry 201,500 14 7
Eric Pharr 186,500 33 3
Belmer Wright 184,000 32 8
Chance Kornuth 180,000 22 8
Curtis Commons 178,500 27 8
Chris Bowen 167,000 33 4
David Hall 167,000 26 6

Full chip counts from Flights A, B and C are available on WSOP.com.

Choctaw Casino Gets a Facelift

First floor Eatery

Players at this year's Choctaw Circuit series enjoy a decidedly different ambiance when they enter the gaming space outside the Center Stage tournament doors. Completed just last month, new interior finishes and a revamped center bar as well as numerous additional table games greet players as they walk into the south wing of the property.

The floor-to-ceiling windows that typically line the long walkway that connects both ends of the casino have been traded for drywall as construction crews operate on the courtyard and pool area outside.The new courtyard is promised to be an updated Oasis pool experience with an indoor/outdoor grill.

The construction of a new hotel tower complete with 500 rooms and VIP suites as well as a full-service "sky" spa and outdoor pool on the roof is also planned. The second floor of the new tower will include three levels of convention and entertainment space totaling over 100,000 square feet with room for up to 3,000 guests. Meanwhile, the focal point of the first floor will be 9,000 square feet of retail space (pictured).

On top of all this, plans include the construction a four-venue food court, 24-lane bowling alley, an arcade, a two-story laser tag arena and a state-of-art movie theater.

Construction crews broke ground in September of 2013 and the remodel project is scheduled to conclude during the first quarter of 2015. In all, the venture costs the property a hefty $275 million and crews are contracting local and regional subcontractors to assist with the efforts whenever possible.

According to a property press release, the expansion makes Choctaw Casino Resort a regional tourist destination.

Needless to say, the WSOP looks forward to a return trip to the Dallas are in 2015.