Tom Dwan made another valiant attempt to add a WSOP title to his resume this year, but yet again durrrr fell short of his bracelet goal. Last year, Dwan’s last ditch effort to win a bracelet in the WSOP’s Main Event made big headlines, but this year the poker press was far more dubious and little fanfare surrounded the ambitious young pro’s Day 1D elimination. At the beginning of the 2011 WSOP, Dwan admitted that he had far less riding on a bracelet this year, but he also admitted that the lower stakes weren’t for lack of trying. In the end, it looks like durrrr’s diminished prop bets will cut his losses some, and he surely can’t be too sad about his series performance with three cashes and a final table finish to his credit this year.
In related Main Event news, Dwan’s choice to play Day 1D probably didn’t help his odds. The fourth and final qualifying day tied for the largest one in the tournament’s history and helped to push total Main Event entries surprisingly close to the 7,000 mark. With 6,865 players ponying up the $10,000 buy-in, the 2011 Main Event will now go on record as the third largest in series history. A number of notables failed to survive the rough and ready Day 1 mobs, but both of Dwan’s Durrrr Challenge opponents – Daniel Cates and Patrik Antonius – were among the 4,521 hopefuls that will continue on to compete on Day 2.
While the Main Event numbers – and really the 2011 WSOP numbers as a whole – are encouraging, there’s been nothing in the way of positive updates from Full Tilt Poker since the site lost its European operating license earlier this month. The poker forums are flooded with rumors, but thus far none of them have proven true. Early rumors that WSOP founder Jack Binion was going to buy out Ray Bitar’s shares of FTP have gradually diminished, and in their place have come rumors that the new European investors had ousted Bitar as CEO.
Full Tilt’s attorney wasted no time responding to the latter rumors, insisting that Bitar still holds the CEO position, but that statement probably brought very little comfort to the many American players still waiting for refunds. Every week it seems a different source is promising not only that a buyout deal is imminent, but that the poker room will be back online and that American refunds are forthcoming. Unfortunately, it looks like FTP’s fate truly rests in the hands of the Alderney Gambling Control Commission, which will decide the operating future of the site in a July 26 hearing.