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Jason Mercier

Jason Mercier (@jasonmercier) ended Day 3 with more than 2.1 million chips, good for 3rd of 19 remaining

Day 3 of the North American Poker Tour began with a bang as several short stacks looked to either double up, or go home.  What started with 81 remaining players became 22 fewer by the end of the first level of play, and the flurry of eliminations didn’t let up from there. Bust outs were happening at a quick enough pace that the line at the payout desk continued to be busy all day, until we arrived at just 34 players, and play cooled down a bit.

During those first few levels, we lost some key names in the tournament including Shane Schleger (75th), Tom Marchese (74th), Josh Brikis (72nd), Christina Lindley (63rd), Phil Laak (59th), Gavin Griffin (58th), Carter Gill (57th), and Bryn Kenney (49th).

As play slowed, we started to see some of the stacks in the tournament grow, including the stack of Christopher Demaci.  By the time the night was through, Demaci ended the day as our chip leader with 3,783,000 chips.  A common name in the Los Angeles poker scene, Demaci has 3 WPT LA Poker Classic cashes to his name, a California State Poker Championship cash as well, and can now add the Los Angeles NAPT cash to his resume.  The Stanton, CA native has more than $274k in total live cashes to his name, as he looks to add to that total with a possible $725,000 1st place prize at the NAPT should he go on to win.

But standing in his way is most notably Jason Mercier.  The Team PokerStars Pro ended his day 3rd in chips with a very healthy 2,150,000, securing a return to the Bicycle Casino for day 4 with a great shot at making his first NAPT Main Event Final Table.  The NAPT has been good to Mercier who won the $25,000 High Roller Shootout at Mohegan Sun earlier this year, leaving Mercier a little conflicted.  The one downside to his deep run here at the main, is that Mercier will miss the Television event of the $25,000 Bounty Shootout at the Crystal Casino.  As for the television portion, there are still rumors that the final table may be moved to the Crystal as well for filming.

Other notables that survived the day include 2006 WSOP Main Event 3rd place finisher Michael Binger, who rounded out the days action with a 2,026,000 stack, good for 4th in chips, and 2010 WSOP Main Event 15th place finisher Matt Affleck, who closed the day with 447,000 chips.  Also still in the field are PokerStars pro’s Anh Van Nguyen (834,000) and George Lind (538,00).

The 19 remaining players will resume action at 1pm PST at the Bicycle Casino and play down to a final table of 8 today.  Here are the Table Draws and Chip Counts:

Table 1
Seat 1: Al Grimes – 428,000
Seat 2: Michael Binger – 2,026,000
Seat 3: Jacob Toole – 1,881,000
Seat 4: Anthony Nardi – 800,000
Seat 5: Carlos Watanabe – 678,000
Seat 6: –empty–
Seat 7: Alan Myerson – 317,000
Seat 8: Jason Mercier – 2,150,000

Table 2
Seat 1: Thomas Young – 390,000
Seat 2: Ray Henson – 326,000
Seat 3: –empty–
Seat 4: Joe Tehan – 1,250,000
Seat 5: –empty–
Seat 6: Micah Raskin 2,356,000
Seat 7: Christopher Demaci – 3,783,000
Seat 8: Joseph Melancon – 660,000

Table 3
Seat 1: Anh Van Nguyen – 834,000
Seat 2: –empty–
Seat 3: Jonathan Gagnon-Villeneuve – 711,000
Seat 4: Matt Affleck – 447,000
Seat 5: George Lind III – 538,000
Seat 6: Jimmie Guinther – 1,099,000
Seat 7: Carl Beliveau – 348,000
Seat 8: –empty–

I’ll be back at the Bike covering action from the floor with real time updates on big hands and where players finish.  You can catch my updates through my twitter feed (@coolwhipflea).