WCOOP 2016: Hungary's sousinha23 wins Win the Button Event #59 ($320 NL Win the Button)

Win the pot, win the button. The concept was simple. The "Win the Button" format favored aggression and created utter chaos if you had the biggest table bully in the world two seats to your right. Rewards could be reaped if you were in perpetual BEASTMODE.

Triple COOP winner Fabrizo 'SixthSenSe19' Gonzalez went deep and made the final table, but he busted in fourth place. The Win the Button event came down to a heads-up battle between Hungary's sousinha23 and Argentina's Ivan 'Negriin' Luca. Negriin is a denizen of high roller events on the international circuit, but he had never won a COOP event before. Alas, Negriin could not hold off sousinha23, who won a methodical, yet exhausting 43-minute heads up match in the Win the Button format to win the aggro-heavy Event #59.

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Vivian Im - 20th Place

WCOOP Event #59 $320 NL "Win the Button" specialty attracted 2,348 total entries in this re-entry event with 1,414 original entries and 944 re-entries. They created a prize pool worth $707,400. The top 296 places paid out with $104,284.57 paid out to the winner.

Day 1 of this multi-day affair ended with only 142 players remaining and U.K.'s Gil3000 led with 585K. PokerStars Team Pro Vivian Im finished 91/142 with 111K. She spent the early part of Day 2 trying to keep her head above water. With 100 to go, both Im and Dan Kelly were in the back of the pack. By the time 50 players remained, Dan 'djk123' Kelly surged into the Top 15 and Vivian Im struggled with one of the shortest stacks remaining. As the field thinned from five tables to four tables, Viviam Im won a chunk of chips to surge to over 420K and move into the Top 20. Dan Kelly missed another final table and another potential WCOOP victory when he busted in 35th place. djk123's A♣J♦ lost a race to Penelas08's 7♦7♠.

With 27 players remaining, Ce$ar$pa was closing in on a 3M stack. Vivian Im was treading water with a short stack. She got as far as 20 players remaining when she met her fate. Bad beat too. She got it all-in for her last 228K with A♠K♦ against Zihuatanejo3's A♣J♣. Zihuatanejo3 flopped a Jack to take the lead. Im flopped a four-flush draw, but whiffed on the turn and the river. PokerStars Team Pro Vivian Im was knocked out in 20th place, which paid out $2,768.19.

As action approached the final table bubble, Negriin held the top spot with almost 6M. Two-time SCOOP champ Tommy "tcblade" Chen bubbled off the final table in tenth place. He was short-stacked and made a final stand with A♥K♠ but lost to sousinha23's T♦9♦ when sousinha23 hit the flop then turned trip nines.

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WCOOP Event #59 - Final Table Chip Counts:
Seat 1: sousinha23 (3,159,711)
Seat 2: SixthSenSe19 (1,042,676)
Seat 3: Negriin (5,494,448)
Seat 4: FireFaux (4,211,467)
Seat 5: bronzegod (3,206,224)
Seat 6: Farius66 (1,912,634)
Seat 7: Ce$ar$pa (1,437,147)
Seat 8: Penelas08 (2,161,329)
Seat 9: irache 87 (954,364)

The final table commenced during Level 41 with blinds at 20K/40K and a 5K ante. Negriin was out in front with 5.5M and irache 87 was the shorty with the only stack under 1M.

A couple of notables at the final table including Triple COOP winner Fabrizio 'SixthSenSe19' Gonzalez. SixthSenSe19 won his second WCOOP less than a week earlier and he was seeking his fifth overall COOP win.

Ivan 'Negriin' Luca won nearly $2M online and $4M in real life. Two summers ago, he shipped a bracelet at the 2015 WSOP. He took third at the PCA High Roller for $495K back in January. In March, Luca won the Eureka Rozvadov Main Event. Playing under Negriin, Luca shipped the Super Tuesday and final tabled numerous WCOOP and SCOOP events...but he had yet to win a COOP.

Also at the final table... FireFaux won over $2.7M online. He final tabled a couple of COOP events and cashed in a few 2016 WCOOPs, but he was seeking a first COOP... Cesar 'Ce$ar$pa' Garcia won a Super Tuesday, but never took down a COOP despite a couple final table appearances... Slovakia's irache 87 went deep in Event #3 but fell short of the win with a runner-up finish... Penelas08 chopped the Sunday Million in June.


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OBSCURED BY CLOUDS: Ce$ar$pa eliminated in 9th place

A full level played out before someone busted. Ce$ar$pa four-bet shoved for 1,501,147 with A♦J♥, but ran into sousinha23's J♠J♦. The board ran out Q♥8♣8♦5♦K♣ and pocket Jacks held up. The U.K.'s Ce$ar$pa became the first player to bust at the final table. Ninth place paid out $7,447.22.

BURNING BRIDGES: bronzegod eliminated in 8th place

Eight handed lasted another full level. Toward the end of Level 43, Negriin won the previous hand and held the button. Farius66 min-raised to 120,000, Negriin called, bronzegod shoved for 797,240, Farius66 folded, but Negriin called. Negriin led with T♥T♣ against bronzegod's 8♥8♠. The board ran out A♥K♥Q♦J♦J♣ and Negriin turned a straight to win the pot. Canada's bronzegod was knocked out in eighth place, which paid out $10,357.68.

THE GOLD IT'S IN THE...:irache 87 eliminated in 7th place

Short-stacked irache 87 decided it was time to make a move. SixthSenSe19 opened to 140,000. irache 87 shoved for 389,206 and SixthSenSe19 called. irache 87 led with A♣T♦ against SixthSenSe19's K♥T♥. But the board ran out K♠9♥3♠9♠5♠. SixthSenSe19 flopped a pair of Kings to win the pot. Slovakia's irache 87 was dunzo in seventh place, which paid out $14,405.63.

With six remaining, Negriin led with 8.6M and the closest was Farius66 in second with 4M. Penelas08 was the shorty with 1.4M.

MUDMEN: FireFaux eliminated in 6th place

Five-handed didn't last very long. Negriin opened to 204,900, FireFaux bombed it all-in for 2,657,573 with A♣J♦ and Negriin called with A♦K♥. The board ran out A♥T♦5♦8♥T♣. Both players flopped an Ace, but Negriin won the pot with a King-kicker. For a sixth-place performance, FireFaux took home $20,035.40.

CHILDHOOD'S END: Penelas08 eliminated in 5th place

Ten hands later, we saw a casualty during a battle of the blinds. Farius66 raised 250,000 from the small blind and Penelas08 called from the big blind. The flop was 6♣5♥4♥ and fireworks ensued. Farius66 bet 250,000, Penelas08 raised to 625,855, Farius66 shoved for 3,828,847 and Penelas08 called all-in for 1,303,448. Farius66 had second pair and a straight draw with 7♦5♦ against Penelas08's flopped top pair with Q♥6♠. The turn was the Q♦ and the river was the 8♥. Farius66 rivered a straight to win the pot. Penelas08 busted in fifth place, which paid out $27,865.40.

With four to go, Negriin still led with 8.9M and SixthSenSe19 was last with 2.9M.

FREE FOUR: SixthSenSe19 eliminated in 4th place

A couple of the short stacks rumbled. Short-stacked SixthSenSe19 open-shoved for 1,183,391 and Farius66 called. SixthSenSe19 was ahead with A♠8♠ against Farius66's A♦7♦. However, a seven on the flop sunk SixthSenSe19's hopes of a double up. The board finished up 7♥6♥4♠3♣2♣. Farius66 won the pot with a pair of sevens. Triple COOP winner Fabrizo 'SixthSenSe19' Gonzalez was dunzo in fourth place, which paid out $38,755.40.

With three to go, Negriin led with 10.2M, followed by sousinha23's 9.4M, Farius66's 3.9M.

ABSOLUTELY CURTAINS: Farius66 eliminated in 3rd place

Negriin and Farius66 were involved in several all-in pots. Neither could knock the other out it seemed, until they jousted in a hand with 6♠6♦ vs. A♣8♦. Negriin open-shoved for 7,725,152 and Farius66 called all-in for 2,953,504. The board ran out T♣5♦2♥2♦A♠. Negriin won the pot with an Ace on the river. Pocket sixes were snuffed out. Farius66 was knocked out in third place and took home $53,901.19.

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So close for Ivan 'Negriin' Luca

HEADS-UP: sousinha23 (Hungary) vs. Negriin (Argentina)
Seat 1: sousinha23 (12,626,344)
Seat 3: Negriin (10,953,656)

With two to go, it was Negriin trailing 12.6M to 10.9M.

WHEN YOU'RE IN: Negriin eliminated in 2nd place; sousinha23 wins Event #59

Negriin won the first hand of heads-up and took the lead. But shortly after, sousinha23 won a 19.3M hand with A♥J♦ vs. Negriin's 5♥5♦. sousinha23 seized control and regained the lead. Although Negriin would pull close a few times, sousinha23 finally delivered the knockout after winning 8 out of the last 12 hands.

Going into the final hand, sousinha23 built up a 20M to 3M lead. Negriin shoved for 3,025,019 with K♥5♣ and sousinha23 called with K♠K♣. Rough time to get ambushed by cowboys, eh? The board ran out K♦J♣2♠9♥Q♥ and sousinha23 flopped the case King to take the lead with a set. That would hold up to win the pot. Negriin was unable to stave off elimination. For a second-place finish, Ivan 'Negriin' Luca earned $74,966.07.

Congrats to Hungary's sousinha23 who won WCOOP Event #50. First place paid out a whopping $104,264.57.

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WCOOP-59 ($320 NLHE [Win the Button]) results
Total entries: 2,348 (1,414 entries; 944 re-entries)
Prize pool: $707,400
Places paid: 296

1. sousinha23 (Hungary) $104,284.57
2. Ivan 'Negriin' Luca (Argentina) $74,966.07
3. Farius66 (Russia) $53,901.19
4. Fabrizo 'SixthSenSe19' Gonzalez (Uruguay) $38,755.40
5. Penelas08 (U.K.) $27,865.40
6. FireFaux (Canada) $20,035.40
7. irache 87 (Slovakia) $14,405.63
8. bronzegod (Canada) $10,357.68
9. Ce$ar$pa (U.K.) $7,447.22

Head over to the WCOOP home page for the schedule of remaining events, plus find out who is in contention for Player of the Series.


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Pauly McGuire is the author of Lost Vegas and a freelance contributor to PokerStars.

Pauly McGuire
@PokerStars in Online