MicroMillions III: magpie1985 flies away with victory in Event 7 ($5.50 NLHE)

Starting the final table of a tournament as the chip leader. Other than the winner's circle, it's a position that most poker players strive towards. In MicroMillions III Event 7, $5.50 NLHE, magpie1985 used the advantage of final table chip leader to bring home the victory.

The seventh event of the third installment of MicroMillions drew 7,388 players, each of whom paid $5.50 for the right to try to claim the top prize of more than $5,600. Doing so first required a few hours of navigating through the land mines in the field. The final 990 players, the ones that survived those land mines, each received a minimum payout of $8.49. It might not seem like much, but that's how bankrolls are built.

From there it was a slugfest to the final nine. One saving grace was that there were no Team PokerStars Pro or PokerStars Team Online players to get past, as none of them entered Event 7.

At about 10:30am PokerStars time, these nine players took their seats at the Event 7 final table:

MM3 Event 7 final table.jpg

Seat 1: ejukkkk21 (2636876 in chips)
Seat 2: Ligeiro1972 (3394062 in chips)
Seat 3: Bozhenko I. (1913556 in chips)
Seat 4: FullOfBears (2197422 in chips)
Seat 5: djibril99 (4334783 in chips)
Seat 6: doctor2302 (5315576 in chips)
Seat 7: dryidko (3539524 in chips)
Seat 8: DennyCraneNZ (3516530 in chips)
Seat 9: magpie1985 (10091671 in chips)

Level 45: blinds 80k-160k, ante 20k
Average: 4.1 million (23 BBs)

Feathers fly

magpie1985 was the overwhelming chipleader at the start of the final table, with about three times the average stack. Of the other eight players, only DennyCraneNZ brought an above-average stack to the final table.

The final nine began things warily. Despite the plethora of short stacks, nobody jammed in the early-going. That changed when djibril99 notched eliminatations on back-to-back hands. First FullOfBears open-shoved for 1.7 million. djibril99 re-shoved for 3.5 million to clear the field, then tabled A♦K♦ at showdown. FullOfBears was an underdog with K♣Q♦ and did not improve on a jack-high board. FullOfBears finished in 9th place.

The next hand, Bozehnko I. raised to 1.4 from first position. djibril99 was the only player to play for that price. Bozenko I. had only 38,556 left after the pre-flop raise, and predictably it went into the pot on an 8-high flop. djibril99 snap-called with pocket jacks; Bozenko I. showed A♠K♣. The turn and river blanked out to send Bozenko I. to the virtual rail in 8th place.

A short stack moving all in doesn't guarantee an elimination, of course. After those first two bust-outs, dryidko managed to double through DennyCraneNZ, all in pre-flop with pocket kings against DennyCraneNZ's A♥Q♦. doctor2302, the shortest of the short stacks, got a piece of good fortune when pocket jacks stood tall against magpie1985's pocket 6s.

That flurry of action left magpie1985 in place as the chip leader but shuffled a few of the other stacks. dryidko climbed into 2nd place, barely trailed by djibril99. DennyCraneNZ, ejukkkk21 and Ligeiro1972 were clumped together at below-average stacks. doctor2302 brought up the rear, leaking a significant number of chips with every ante and blind.

Down to about 600,000 in chips at the 125k/250k blind level, doctor2302 made a desperate all in call from the big blind with A♣5♣. ejukkkk21, the initial raiser, showed two kings - doctor2302's ace was live. It didn't matter as the board rolled out 2♦5♦6♥6♦4♣ to end doctor2302's run through Event 7 in 7th place. The doctor was out.

Cooked geese

By the time the blinds pushed up to 150k/300k, Ligeiro1972 was down to about 2.17 million in chips - just seven big blinds. From one off the button, Ligeiro1972 pushed with K♥5♥. DennyCraneNZ appeared to pause and think before calling with A♦4♦. The flop and turn gave Ligeiro1972 so much hope, but the river crushed that hope, as it so often does:

RSS readers click through to see replay

"Thought I had the best hand," DennyCraneNZ said afterwards. "Just got lucky."

"Good call," magpie1985 replied.

At 200k/400k, ejukkkk21 picked up a timely A♥K♥ and doubled to 5.3 million through magpie1985's A♠4♠. It wasn't without a sweat though; the board developed 5♦J♥7♠8♠ before blanking on the river. The next hand, djibril99 open-shoved for 3.7 million from the button with A♣2♦. dryidko called out of the small blind with a better ace, A♠7♦, and flopped a pair of 7s. That pair ensured that djibril99 exited in 5th place.

dryidko also notched the 4th-place elimination and in doing so took over the chip lead from magpie1985. From the button, dryidko made a minimum-raise to 800k. DennyCraneNZ three-bet all in out of the small blind to 4.24 million. dryidko called with K♣8♣, a hand only slightly behind DennyCraneNZ's A♣J♣. Neither player paired the flop, but dryidko spiked an 8 on the turn. That pair was enough; a river blank sent DennyCraneNZ packing.

Cock of the walk

Three-handed, the tournament looked to be a battle between dryidko (20.3 million) and magpie1985 (12.2 million). ejukkkk21 kept hanging around despite a short stack of 4.4 million. One double-up through magpie1985, when A♥8♣ held up against A♣7♣, got ejukkkk21 back into the game with 7.8 million.

"Pause. Who wants to deal?" magpie1985 then asked. The chip leader dryidko quashed the thought right away.

"No. Play."

Play they did. dryidko maintained the chip lead; magpie 1985 stayed in 2nd place; and ejukkkk21 struggled to find spots to vault into contention. With blinds of 250k and 500k having to be paid two of every three hands, it wasn't long before ejukkkk21 slipped back down to about 2 million in chips. A button shove with A♦4♣ couldn't save ejukkkk21 from a 3rd-place finish. dryidko called form the small blind with Q♦T♦ and flopped a pair, T♠7♥6♠6♥9♣.

Heads-up play lasted eight hands. dryidko started with the chip lead over magpie1985, 22.1 million to 14.7 million. But magpie1985 rattled off five straight winners, including a three-bet pot in which dryidko committed 5 million chips only to fold the river, to take over the chip lead, 23.3 million to 13.6 million. dryidko won the blinds twice from there, but the final hand was all magpie1985.

magpie1985 opened the button to 1.5 million. dryidko responded with a three-bet to 3.5 million. Almost instantly, magpie1985 moved all in for 16.5 million and just as quickly dryidko called all in for less. dryidko showed two Broadway cards, K♥J♥, but magpie1985 had two better Broadway cards: A♥K♠. This battle of domination went to magpie1985, as a board of K♦6♥T♠8♣2♣ did not improve dryidko to the winning hand.

Apart from the last elimination of the tournament, magpie1985 did not notch a single elimination at the final table. Yet starting the final table with the chip lead allowed magpie1985 to sit back and carefully choose spots. When play was down to six-handed it looked like magpie1985 would coast to victory. Things got a little hairy from there, but with that big stack, some steadfast play and a pinch of good luck, magpie1985 was able to bring the MicroMillions Event 7 victory back to the nest. For that, magpie1985 is the latest MicroMillions champion.

2012 MicroMillions III Event 7 $5.50 NLHE results:

1st: magpie1985 ($5,622.86)
2nd: dryidko ($4,155.75)
3rd: ejukkkk21 ($2,955.20)
4th: DennyCraneNZ ($2,031.70)
5th: djibril99 ($1,551.48)
6th: Ligeiro1972 ($1,182.08)
7th: doctor2302 ($812.68)
8th: Bozhenko I. ($443.28)
9th: FullOfBears ($286.28)

Day 2 of the MicroMillions III has only just begun. There are still several events you can enter today and more than 80 other MicroMillions III tournaments that you can play over the next nine days. Get all the MicroMillions III information you could ever want - schedules, results, point standings and more - at the
MicroMillions home page.

Dave Behr is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in MicroMillions III