All eight remaining players in the PCA Main Event would have walked into the Imperial Ballroom via a large, well lit rotunda today. Since the PCA kicked off on 5 January the silver spade side event trophies lining the walls of that room have slowly been fading, like Marty McFly’s hand during The Enchantment Prom. In the centre of the rotunda was a separate cordoned-off booth which showcased the big dogs, the championship event trophies, two of which are still being fought over. But there are more than two on show. What has loosely been coined as the legacy trophy is on display behind a large clear box, which is presumably bulletproof and set to blast a klaxon should anyone have the temerity to touch it. It’s significantly larger than the others with twisted, fluted sides. It looks expensive.
The championship trophies are worth around $1,100 a pop, which will come as little surprise to anyone who has tried to lift one. Just ask Griffin “Flush_Entity” Benger or the man with most experience with trophy shots, EPT photographer Neil Stoddart.
“Anyone you ask to hold it like this can do it but they always say, ‘okay, take it quick,’ and their arm quickly starts shaking,” said Stoddart, holding one arm out to one side as if lifting trophy aloft. They are damn heavy.
No one is going to get to hold the legacy trophy though, it’s never given away, never used in winner photos. It’s a shiny portable roll of honour listing all the winners since the PCA began. It is surprisingly fragile, so I was told by a man in the know, and it pretty much lives in bubble wrap for 95% of the year. Today’s winner of the PCA 2014 Main Event will have their name added to it. Should they decide to get a replica made I’m sure that the $1.8m they’ve just won will cover it.
The infamous rotunda
The rotunda which leads into the Imperial Ballroom has featured in many PokerStars Blog stories over the years. It’s a thread in the rich PCA tapestry. Every player who’s busted had walked into the rotunda hoping and dreaming that they would be the last man standing, and had to walk back through past the trophies thinking ‘next year’.
Here are a few of those threads:
Rick Dacey is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.