Dan Smith Leads the Final Six in the WPT Big One for One Drop

dan smith big one final table

5 minutes

Last Updated: January 25, 2024

The biggest buy-in tournament of the year will conclude today, as six remaining players come back to battle down to a champion in the Big One for One Drop at the WPT World Championship Festival.

One of the most successful tournament poker players of all time, Dan Smith, will be leading the remaining six players into action today, as he sits on a stack of 4,865,000 chips, well ahead of Austrian Mario Mosboeck in second, who will be starting the day with 3,340,000 in chips.

Joining them will be other super-successful poker professionals like Isaac Haxton, Mikita Badziakouski, and Nick Petrangelo, while Santosh Suvarna remains the only surviving businessman in the field that started with 17 players in total.

They will all be chasing after the $7,114,500 first place prize, while two of them will go home empty-handed, as the small playing field could only accommodate for four payouts in the end.

The fact two final table players won’t be getting anything back for their efforts will likely create some interesting dynamics in the early going, as the big stacks get to push the shorter stacks around and apply maximum ICM pressure, a fact the likes of Dan Smith will certainly know how to use.

WPT Voyage

Big Names Drop Along the Way

The first Big One for One Drop event since 2018 kicked off at 2:00 pm on Monday with a total of 17 players showing up, including the likes of Phil Ivey, Jason Koon, and Fedor Holz.

For Phil Ivey, who is widely considered as the best poker player of all time, it was simply not to be in the Big One. The WPT champion busted late on Day 1, making him one of the early casualties of Dan Smith, who would go on to become the chip leader and keep this status all the way into final day action.

While most of the 17 who entered the event came back yesterday, the escalating blinds led to some inevitable confrontations during Day 2 action.

Big name pros like Chris Brewer, Fedor Holz, and Stephen Chidwick were not able to survive their key showdowns, and ending up being among the early dropouts of the day.

GGPoker ambassador Jason Koon, who had a lot of media attention and eyes on him, ended up busting in 10th place to Nick Petrangelo, who briefly held the position of overall chip leader.

Rick Salomon and Adrian Mateos were next to go, as Salomon’s pocket Nines ran into the pocket Jacks of Badziakouski, while Mateos lost a coin flip with KQ against the pocket Jacks of Dan Smith.

After winning that hand, Smith once again jumped to the top of the chip counts and established himself as the dominating stack at the table. This will give him a chance to exploit his opponents through ICM pressure and aggressive play, which you can expect to see going into the final day.

Here is a quick look at the seat draw for the final table, which was completed at the end of action yesterday:

  • Seat 1. Santhosh Suvarna – 1,845,000 (23 bb)
  • Seat 2. Dan Smith – 4,865,000 (61 bb)
  • Seat 3. Nick Petrangelo – 1,445,000 (18 bb)
  • Seat 4. Mikita Badziakouski – 2,935,000 (37 bb)
  • Seat 5. Isaac Haxton – 2,570,000 (32 bb)
  • Seat 6. Mario Mosboeck – 3,340,000 (42 bb)

Who Are the Final Six in the Big One?

Looking at the list of the final six players in the Big One for One Drop, those in the know will immediately recognize all six names, as they have all had a significant contribution to the poker world over their careers.

Yet, it is worth looking at the list with a bit more scrutiny, and remembering how each of the six players made their way to the most valuable final table of the WPT World Championship festival.

Dan Smith, often called “King Dan,” comes into the final table after a long career on the tournament circuit, one that has seen him win 8 EPT titles, and one trophy at both WPT and WSOP.

With just under $50 million in tournament winnings, Smith is truly a legend of the game and a household name known to poker players across the globe.

Second place in the chip counts is held by Mario Mosboeck, a retired Austrian football player and close friend of Fedor Holz. While not too much is known about Mosboeck’s way into poker, it is clear that he is an amazing tournament player, as he likely learned from the very best.

wpt big one final table

Going into the final table third in chips is Mikita Badziakouski, a Belarus player who truly established himself in the poker world by dominating the highest stakes tournaments and cash games in the world.

A staple of the Triton Poker Tour, Badziakouski is one of the savviest and most calculated poker players in the world, whose poker skills are beyond dispute.

Isaak Hexton will be playing for the biggest payday of his tournament poker career, although he has amassed over $45 million in winnings over the years, and is widely recognized as one of the very best in the business.

Santosh Suvarna, who will be the second shortest stack at the final table, comes into the day as the only real wild card, as his poker resume remains largely to be written.

Suvarna exploded onto the poker scene over the last year, playing in some of the biggest televised cash games of all time, and showing off his unique brand of splashy poker that produced massive swings and some very interesting hands.

Rounding up the final six is Nick Petrangelo, a two-time WSOP champion with $32 million in winnings and a successful career as both a poker player and a coach. He will be looking to chip up early, although he too will be working with nearly 20 big blinds to start the day.

Tune In for Live Final Table Stream

As you would probably expect, WPT will give you a chance to see all the action from the Big One for One Drop in real time, as the final table will be live-streamed on the WPT YouTube channel.

The live stream will start at 4:00 pm local time, with every hand shown with player hole cards, giving you a chance to see these masters of the game of poker at work.

If you happen to miss the live action, make sure to come back for more updates right here, as we keep tracking all the happenings at the WPT World Championship festival and report all the major developments as they happen.

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