A recent Temple University grad has climbed to the top of the poker world and is on the verge of winning $8 million.
Scott Blumstein, a native of northern New Jersey who lives in Philadelphia, has a commanding lead in the 2017 World Series of Poker main event going on right now in Las Vegas. He is one of only three players left — out of more than 7,000 that started out the tournament.
He has 226 million chips left, compared to current second-place chip-holder Dan Ott's 88 million and current third-place Benjamin Pollack's 45 million, according to ESPN, which is broadcasting the event.
Ott is also a current Pennsylvanian. He hails from Altoona. Pollack is a French poker professional.
Still, Blumstein isn't getting overly confident just yet.
"If you had to ask me, probably the two guys I would least want to get three-handed with," Blumstein told ESPN. "But with that being said, I have a lot of chips and I'm confident we're going to go home, work on some three-handed poker, and come back ready to play tomorrow."
It's unclear what Blumstein, 25, currently does for a living. He graduated from Temple three years ago with a degree in accounting. According to his Twitter account, he's a "professional liver."
A professional poker website called Poker News describes Blumstein as "an East Coast tournament grinder." A grinder is a player who spends a lot of time at the poker table and who considers poker a career.
He'll likely be a professional poker player, at least for the considerable future. Even if he blows his large lead heading into the final threesome, who return to the table 8:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) Saturday, he's guaranteed at least $3.5 million for third place.
And it won't be his first big score in a poker tournament. He won nearly $200,000 in a tournament at the Borgata in Atlantic City last year.
The "three-handed" final table will be broadcast on ESPN, starting at 9 p.m.