WSOP 2021: Week 1 in photos (and words)

Haley Hintze
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Posted on 10/07/2021

Professional poker writer and decidedly amateur photographer Haley Hintze captures people and scenes from the first week of action at the 2021 World Series of Poker.

wsop 2021 25K HORSE final table

The first major title of the 2021 went to Philadelphia’s Jesse Klein (white t-shirt at left), who knocked off a powerful final-table lineup including Ben Yu, David Benyamine, Phil Hellmuth, and Benny Glaser (back to camera) to win Event #2, the $25,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship, under the glaring lights of a secondary feature table.

Erik Seidel Event 06 (Image: Haley Hintze)

Many players catch up on niceties with other players before an event begins. Erik Seidel prefers his quiet time. Here, the nine-time bracelet winner enjoys a moment of solitude before the start of Event #6, the $25,000 High Roller No-Limit Hold’em 8-Handed.

WSOP-dot-com lighted hallway sign (Image: Haley Hintze)

It’s back! The WSOP’s photo-op lighted sign has been around for several years now, and it’s returned for one final tour of duty at the Rio. The sign’s been surprisingly durable and shows little wear. The trick, however, is finding a moment without passersby or groups posing for photos. It’s in one of the Rio Convention Center’s busiest spots, where its two major hallways intersect.

KL Cleeton and his father, Kenneth, are in attendance at the Rio. It’s build-a-stack time for KL, seen here playing in the Pavilion Room in one of the “Reunion” tourney‘s starting flights.

Event 7 Day 2 Gabe Ramos Summer and Ozy (Image: Haley Hintze)

It’s Day 2 in Event #7, $1,500 Dealers Choice 6-Handed. Gabe Ramos’s two Shibas, Summer (left) and Ozy, keep a sharp eye out for any tasty bits that might drop to the floor in the Amazon Room.

Adam Friedman Event 7 Day 1 (Image: Haley Hintze)

Three-time bracelet winner Adam Friedman traces his way through betting action during an early hand in Event #7, the $1,500 Dealers Choice 6-Handed tournament. That’s one of the Phil Hellmuth-endorsed Breinfuel drinks Friedman is sampling.

Event 9 Day 3 chip bags (Image: Haley Hintze)

The chip bags are waiting but the players haven’t arrived. It’s a short while before action resumes on Day 3 of Event 9, the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship, at one of the Amazon Room’s secondary feature tables.

Mississippi’s Denise Pratt is a semi-regular at deep-South Circuit stops, and she was on hand for Event #4, the $500 Reunion. Part firebrand and always witty, she can befuddle her opponents at the table.

Brock Parker Brandon Shack-Harris Event 9 Day 2 (Image: Haley Hintze)

An image assortment without Brandon Shack-Harris? Well, not this time. The hug-happy Brandon gives Brock Parker (left) the friendly greeting before Day 2 of the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship.

Vanessa Kade ACR Event 8 Day 1 (Image: Haley Hintze)

Patched-up players are everywhere at the WSOP. But very few have outfit-complimenting Covid masks. ACR pro and fashionista Vanessa Kade rocks her gold facialwear at a Pavilion Room table.

So what happens when you agree to a very impromptu interview and photo op in the media room at the WSOP? Well, if you’re Brazilian star Yuri Dzivielevski, you end up getting posed in front of a water cooler and a garbage can. Sorry, Yuri!

All images source: Haley Hintze