Colman, Keating Hit the Rail as WSOP Main Event Hits 27
We know (mostly) what happens already. We know who goes bust when, and what cards they were holding when it happened.
We also know (exactly) which nine players will make the final table of the 2016 World Series of Poker Main Event.
That doesn't seem to make the playdown of the action as seen on ESPN every week any less exciting, though. And that was certainly the case this Sunday as the field winnowed to just 27 players and several notable runs ended short of the final glory.
The Lion Sleeps Tomorrow
If you've followed the ESPN coverage over the past few weeks you'll know that UK solicitor Will Kassouf - he of the epic "heart of a lion" and "9 high like a boss" taunts - has been a central figure.
One of the chip leaders on Days 5 and 6 Kassouf saw his star fade a little this week as his chip stack began to dwindle and his camera time wane.
He did make it in to a few hands near the end of the episode - remarkably quite ones, at that - but finished the day just 22nd of 27 players left and was far from the main attraction.
We also know he'll be the first to bust when the action resumes next week so that should bring an end to the Kassouf hysteria for this year.
Instead we saw the makings of the November Nine take shape and the loss of a few other very notable players including Dan Colman, Jonas Lauck, Paul Volpe and the "other" villain of the Main Event, Alex Keating.
Keating Goes Quietly
The other notable chatterbox featured in the ESPN coverage so far has of course been Keating, he of the Grizzly Adams-esque beard and relentless table banter.
After 6 days of play, however, Keating lost his momentum and, ultimately, his voice as he fell in 35th when his AJ couldn't beat David L'Honore's 99.
Speaking to ESPN's Kara Scott after his elimination, Keating actually revealed he was about to embark on a 10-day meditation retreat with absolutely no talking.
Other preliminary favorites to make the November Nine joined him on the rail as former $1m Big One for One Drop winner Dan Colman and online poker icon Paul Volpe also busted.
Lauck, meanwhile, who recently won the $1.5 million WCOOP Main Event, saw his stack painfully decimated when his AA fell to Gordon Vayo's AK.
Vayo, of course, once he managed to regain his senses, used Lauck's chips to slingshot himself all the way to the November Nine on the following day.
We also got a good taste of the paths to the finals for Nov 9ers Cliff Josephy and Fernando Pons, who was almost single-handedly responsible for Colman's departure in two big pots.
Watch the full episodes from Sunday night below: