Four people to watch in the WSOP Final Table

Ryan Riess, right, of East Lansing, Mich. shakes hands with Rep Porter of Woodinville, Wash. after knocking Porter out of the World Series of Poker $10,000 buy-in no-limit Texas Hold ‘Em main event at the Rio Tuesday morning, July 16, 2013.
Photo: Steve Marcus

It’s the World Series of Poker. Main event. Final table. Nine players remain, one of whom will walk away with $733,224—if he finishes dead last. The first-place prize? $8.4 million. Let’s look at four of the top contenders:

Jay Farber, VIP Host. The 28-year-old local VIP host considers poker a hobby, but he’s going into the final table with 25,975,000 in chips. Impressive, especially considering his previous poker winnings total less than $2,200.

Ryan Riess, Poker player. This 23-year-old Michigan State University grad has 25,875,000 in chips, so maybe the degree was a waste of time. No big loss; according to US News & World Report, the average out-of-state MSU tuition is a measly $47,954.

Marc-Etienne McLaughlin, Tattoo artist. This French-Canadian tattoo artist (who plays Ping-Pong in his spare time) has 26,525,000 in chips, and unlike some of his tablemates, he’s used to this. McLaughlin placed 30th in the 2009 WSOP and 86th in 2011.

Sylvain Loosli, Online Poker Player. Loosli has said he’s “quite impressed [he] didn’t feel any pressure.” Maybe his face-hiding gray hoodie looks silly, but it’s gotten him 19,600,000 in chips.


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