LAS VEGAS -- Level 24 ended with a loud scream over in the purple section of the Amazon Room. Brandon Steven had struggled since dinner but was rejuvenated with confidence after moving all-in five times and staying alive in the main event. Steven's six shove turned out to be his last one, as his A-K lost a race to Keanu Tabali. Steven stormed away from his table, clearly frustrated, and as he walked out the door, he looked at the camera and said he'd be back next year. This was Steven's third cash of the summer, his best being a seventh-place finish in the $111,111 high roller.
Carlos Mortensen's rise continued after a win in a star-versus-star confrontation against two-time WPT champion Marvin Rettenmaier. Mortensen chipped up to 2.8 million after the K-K>Q-Q hand and his elimination of Senovio Ramirez just a few hands later. Rettenmaier had three cashes this WSOP.
Sami Rustom leads with 6.7 million and the blinds at 20,000/40,000 with a 5,000 ante. He jumped into the lead after the dinner break in a hand in which he turned a straight with 6-7 on a K-5-4-8-7 board and got paid off on the river by Simon Ravnsbaek. Rustom, George Wong and Marc McLaughlin hold the top three stacks and for McLaughlin, this is his third top-100 finish in the main event over the past five years.
On the first hand back from the break, Annette Obrestad three-bet 5-5 into K-K and was eliminated in 89th. The 2007 WSOP Europe main event champion earned $71,053 and will get plenty of face time when the WSOP on ESPN airs, beginning on July 23.
Small blinds: There are multiple fisherman left in the main event, according to profile descriptions on Twitter. ... As I wrote this post, Beverly Lange was eliminated, which leaves Jackie Glazier as the only woman left in the field. ... JC Tran has chipped up nicely since moving to the feature table earlier today. This is his sixth main event cash in the past 10 years. ... Jon Lane entered the day as the chip leader and was eliminated during this last level.