Joe Hachem making a run for the diamonds

On a regular day, the kind that sees me working in the field, I'm sitting in a chair near Joe Hachem, trying not to move, trying not to breathe, trying not to do anything to derail the train that Joe Hachem can be. When the 2005 World Series of Poker champion gets in a winning zone, it can be like watching a way-too-healthy animal on the hunt. When the cards are in the air, there's not much talking to the champion. He plays and he plays hard.

Photo courtesy of FlipChip at

This week, however, Hachem decided to go into hunting animal mode without giving me a heads up. For the past few days, he has been running roughshod over the field at the 2006 Five Diamond World Poker Classic World Poker Tour event. At this writing, Hachem sits atop the field of the 20 or so remaining players and has a massive chip lead to boot.

While there's a part of me that wishes I could be railing Hachem right now, there is another part that feels content not to be the jinx that could bring down the champion.

So, good luck Joe. We're rooting for you, from afar.

Photo courtesy of FlipChip at

Brad Willis
@BradWillis in