Mitchell Towner had only planned to play one WSOP event this summer – and he won it (WSOP photo)

Many recreational players anxiously await the WSOP schedule every year so that they can pick the one event they’re going to play. Mitchell Towner was one of those players and when he saw the 2016 World Series of Poker schedule he realized the $1,500 Monster Stack would be happening pretty close to a Las Vegas conference he already had plans to attend. So he played it. And on Tuesday night he did what ever recreational player dreams of and one his first WSOP bracelet.

Towner was one of two players to win a bracelet on Tuesday as Loren Klein won one of his own. Those two were the big winners on Tuesday, but there were more than a few big names who made big moves towards bracelets of their own on Tuesday as well.

Event #41: Mitchell Towner Wins Monster Stack

Mitchell Towner picked one WSOP event to play this summer: the Monster Stack. On Tuesday night the 29-year-old University of Arizona professor proved that he had made the right decision by winning the Monster Stack and the $1,120,196 first place prize money.

“When I was a college student, I never had any money. Now that I’m a professor, I had an extra $1,500 that I could play one event,” said Towner.

Towner beat Venezualan poker pro Dorian Rios heads-up for the bracelet. Towner was in Las Vegas for a conference and the Monster Stack just happened to fit his schedule.

“I came here for a conference and planned to play just one event. I might play the Main Event, too,” Towner said. “But after this, for me, it’s head back to work.”

David Pham finished fifth for $289,497. Longtime PocketFiver Chris ‘hattrick8810’ Odle finished 19th for $39,027.

The Monster Stack attracted 6,927 players and generated a total prize pool of $9,351,450

Final Table Payouts

  1. Mitchell Towner – $1,120,196
  2. Dorian Rios – $692,029
  3. Stephen Nussrallah – $513,902
  4. Daniel DiPasquale – $384,338
  5. David Pham – $289,497
  6. Andrew Moreno – $219,632
  7. David Valcourt – $167,838
  8. Marshall White – $129,197
  9. Cody Pack – $100,185

Event #44: Just Two Players in $1,000 No Limit Hold’em

The $1,000 No Limit Hold’em event was supposed to end on Tuesday but Wenlong Jin and Steven Wolansky just couldn’t cooperate. The two players are the last two remaining out of the 2,076 who played the event.

Jin and Wolansky played over three hours of heads-up poker before bagging up for the night. Jin holds a slight chip lead with 5,262,000 to Wolansky’s 5,120,000. The pair will resume play at Noon and play down to a winner.

Heads-up Chip Counts

  1. Wenlong Jin – 5,262,000
  2. Steven Wolansky – 5,120,000

Event #45: Loren Klein Goes Wire to Wire $1,500 Mixed NLHE/PLO

Loren Klein lead the ,500 Mixed NLHE/PLO event from beginning to end. (WSOP photo)

At the end of Day 1 of the $1,500 Mixed No Limit Hold’em/Pot Limit omaha event, Loren Klein was at the top of the chip counts. When players bagged up at the end of Day 2, Klein was still leading. And when the tournament wrapped up on Tuesday night, Klein was posing for the bracelet winner’s photo after beating out Dmitry Savelyev heads-up to win the first bracelet of his career.

“It’s about money.It’s about glory.It’s about bracelets.I guess I like them all,” Klein said after his win. This is Klein’s fourth cash of the 2016 WSOP and 23rd of his career – all but one of those have come in either No Limit Hold’em or Pot Limit Omaha events. “These are definitely my two best games.”

Klein earned $241,427 for the win while Savelyev walked away with $149,177 for his runner-up performance.

Craig Varnell, who won the WPT500 event last summer, finished 11th.

Final Table Payouts

  1. Loren Klein – $241,427
  2. Dmitry Savelyev – $149,177
  3. Rick Alvarado – $104,784
  4. Michael Noori – $74,634
  5. Matthew Humphrey – $53,915
  6. Eric Penner – $39,510
  7. Alexandr Orlov – $29,378
  8. David Callaghan – $22,168
  9. Steven Gagliano – $16,980

Event #46: Former November Niner Leads $1,500 Bounty Event after Day 2

Steve Gee has some experience in making deep runs in big No Limit Hold’em fields and it’s paying off in the $1,500 Bounty NLHE event. The former November Niner leads the final 36 players in the event with 1,675,000.

Right behind Gee is 2013 WSOP Ladies Champion Kristen Bicknell with 1,446,000. Kitty Kuo has the third biggest stack after Day 2, finishing with 871,000.

Calvin Anderson also advanced to Day 3, finishing with 546,000.

Top 10 Chip Counts

  1. Steve Gee – 1,675,000
  2. Kristen Bicknell – 1,446,000
  3. Kitson Kho – 871,000
  4. Sebastien Comel – 829,000
  5. Fadi Hamad – 749,000
  6. Jason Singleton – 711,000
  7. Ben Marsh – 686,000
  8. Josip Simunic – 666,000
  9. Norbert Szecsi – 609,000
  10. Milan Simko – 575,000

Event #47: Chris Klodnicki Leads $10,000 Triple Draw Championship

Many people consider Chris Klodnicki to be one of the best players to have never won a WSOP bracelet. Just eight other players stand in Klodnicki’s way of removing his name from that list. Klodnicki leads the final nine players in the $10,000 Triple Draw Championship after putting 1,910,000 in the bag at the end of Day 2 Tuesday.

If Klodnicki is going to succeed he’s going to need to make his way through a mine field of talented players. Three-time WSOP bracelet winner Michael Gathy, who just won the $5,000 Six Max NLHE event, sits second with 1,337,000. Another three-time bracelet winner, John Hennigan, is third. JC Tran and Viacheslav Zhukov, who have two bracelets each, round out the to five.

The bubble burst on Tuesday and ten players managed to make it into the money before busting. Erik Sagstrom, Jon Turner, Stephen Chidwick, Dzmitry Urbanovich and Daniel Negreanu all managed to cash. Christopher Vitch, who won his first bracelet earlier this week in the $1,500 Mixed Triple Draw event, finished 10th.

The final nine players are back in action at 2 PM PT.

Final Nine Chip Counts

  1. Chris Klodnicki – 1,910,000
  2. Michael Gathy – 1,337,000
  3. John Hennigan – 787,000
  4. JC Tran – 557,000
  5. Viacheslav Zhukov – 487,000
  6. Scott Abrams – 360,000
  7. Abe Mosseri – 335,000
  8. Brant Hale – 322,000
  9. Andrey Zhigalov – 156,000

Event #48: Michael Mizrachi Bags Big Stack in $5,000 Turbo

Eduards Kudrjavcevs finished Day 1 of the $5,000 Turbo event with the chip lead but the group of 48 players chasing him includes some of the most accomplished NLHE players in the world.

Kudrjavcevs finished with 640,000, which puts him barely ahead of Michael Mizrachi, who finished with 608,000. The top 10 also includes Ankush Mandavia, Max Silver, Kyle Julius, Dietrich Fast and Chance Kornuth.

Another player who made it through Day 1 was Jason Mercier. With two bracelets already this summer, Mercier just needs one more to win a massive prop bet that was originally with Vanessa Selbst, althought Mike McDonald ended up buying a large piece of the bet after Jason won his first bracelet earlier this summer.

McDonald also advanced to Day 2, finishing just ahead of Mercier with 327,000.

One of the shorter stackes returning for Day 2 is Phil Hellmuth. The all-time leader in WSOP bracelets and cashes finished with just 122,000.

The final 49 players return at Noon PT to play down to a winner.

Top 10 Chip Counts

  1. Eduards Kudrjavcevs – 640,000
  2. Michael Mizrachi – 608,000
  3. Ankush Mandavia – 590,000
  4. Max Silver – 536,000
  5. Kyle Julius – 488,000
  6. Pedro Oliveira – 480,000
  7. Dietrich Fast – 431,000
  8. Assani Fisher – 406,000
  9. Chance Kornuth – 405,000
  10. Fabrizio Gonzalez – 396,000

Event #49: Naoya Kihara Leads $1,500 Seven Card Stud

Japanese poker pro Naoya Kihara finished Day 1 of the $1,500 Seven Card Stud with the biggest stack after bagging up 89,000. Right behind Kihara is Yaniv Birman with 84,900 and Brandon Cantu with 83,000.

Benny Glaser, fresh off of winning his second WSOP bracelet of the summer, finished with 64,000, the sixth biggest Day 1 stack. Other bracelet winners to advance to Day 2 include Robert Mizrachi, Matt Grapenthien, John Monnette, Shaun Deeb, Dan Idema and Andre Akkari.

Action resumes at 2 PM PT.

Top 10 Chip Counts

  1. Naoya Kihara – 89,000
  2. Yaniv Birman – 84,900
  3. Brandon Cantu – 83,000
  4. Frank Athey – 65,200
  5. Ivan Schertzer – 64,700
  6. Benny Glaser – 64,000
  7. Yuebin Guo – 62,200
  8. Matt Grapenthien – 61,800
  9. Cory Zeidman – 61,100
  10. Robert Mizrachi – 60,000