SCOOP: Perumov predicts, then delivers, victory in Event #20, $55 Limit Hold'em 6-max

scoop2009_thn.gifBabe Ruth. Joe Namath. Perumov? One of these people is not like the other, but all predicted something amazing in their fields. Babe Ruth's field was baseball; Joe Namath's field was American football. And Perumov's field was fixed-limit hold'em.

Yes, fixed-limit hold'em. You remember that game, right? It was the game that was the poker gold standard before before those pesky hole card cameras came along and transformed the poker landscape. Once they did, fixed-limit hold'em began a slow decline.

The game still has its adherents, however. Judging by the 2,472 players who turned out for today's SCOOP Event #20-L, $55 limit hold'em 6-max, the game isn't going anywhere any time soon. Six Team PokerStars Pros were in the massive field: Steve Paul-Ambrose, Victor Ramdin, Katja Thater, Noah Boeken, Marcin Horecki, and Ylon Schwartz. Only Horecki tasted the promised land of the 420 players who made "the money", shimmying his way down to 360th place for a small cash. That left the field wide open for someone else to walk away with the five-figure payday.

fnupple was the unlucky player eliminated on the final table bubble. With that elimination, these six players assembled to battle it out for the title, the cash and the SCOOP champion's watch:

Seat 1: Perumov (1,367,024 in chips)
Seat 2: PokerTom681 (2,223,817 in chips)
Seat 3: boohoocry (2,070,701 in chips)
Seat 4: drood (771,365 in chips)
Seat 5: P0KERDUUDE (2,178,498 in chips)
Seat 6: msp20 (3,748,595 in chips)

SCOOP 20 Low Final Table.JPG

Six-handed fixed-limit hold'em is known, more than anything else, for aggression. The final table players showed aggression in spades, raising and re-raising hands on multiple streets with as little as ace-high. The action was also fast-paced; one hand had barely ended before the next was already on the turn. Thus it was fairly surprising to see the short stack, drood, survive for ten minutes before ending up all in on a flop of 3♦ 2♦ 2♠. He had an overpair of 7♥ 7♦, but Perumov had a bigger overpair of Q♠ Q♥ to send drood to the rail in 6th place.

Third-place contender boohoocry then suggested a chip-equit chop, but the other players at the table felt it was too soon to be discussing a chop.

That advice proved quite prescient -- a series of second-best hands left boohoocry as the short stack within ten more minutes. He got his last few chips in preflop with 4♠ A♦. msp20 wok up with 7♠ [7h in the big blind, and found a matching 7♦ on the turn of a 2♣ 8♦ K♥ 7♦ T♥. Don't cry for boohoocry, however; fifth place earned him $4,303.76

With four players remaining, the action was shaping up for a heads-up battle between PokerTom681 and msp20, each of whom had about 5.0 million chips. Before they could get to heads-up play they needed to eliminate Perumov and POKERDUUDE. Each proved a tough nut to crack. Perumov was especially gutsy, turning a 800,000-chip stack into 2.4 million chips inside of ten minutes.

POKERDUUDE, on the other hand, finally said, "Aloha, Mr. Hand," after this brutal pot:

RSS readers click through to see replay

For the next fifteen minutes the three remaining players batted the chip lead around like a beach ball at a major sporting event. 1.5-million chip swings were common for each of them. msp20 fared the best, picking up enough pots to climb to 7.5 million chips, more than double second-place contender PokerTom681. That left Perumov sucking wind at the rear of the pack, but the player staged another rally up to about 2.5 million in chips after falling to just 600,000.

Limits moved to 120,000 and 240,000, threatening to push into the danger zone any player that lost two pots in a row. Swings that had previously been huge became staggering. Perumov took over the chip lead at roughly 6.0 million chips, with msp20 and PokerTom681 tied for 2nd and 3rd places at 3.0 million. Then juts as quickly it was all-square at about 4.0 million chips each. That was when PokerTom681 proposed an even three-way chop. The tournament was paused to allow the players to see what they could agree, but Perumov ultimately said, "I think I am better" than the other players and scuttled a deal.

Perumov may have been right, or he may have just hit a rush. Either way, he took over the chip lead before knocking PokerTom681 out in third place. PokerTom681 was all in preflop with the best hand, 9♦ A♥, but Perumov's 3♠ Q♥ paired queens on a flop of 2♥ 7♣ Q♦. When no ace hit the turn or river, PokerTom681 was eliminated in third place and left to wonder how he might have persuaded Perumov to accept a deal.

Perumov started heads-up play with a two-to-one chip lead on msp20, 8.2 million to 4.1 million. He simply steam-rolled msp20, winning every major pot. The big blow was a 4-million chip pot that was three-bet preflop and capped on a flop of 4♠ 3♠ 6♥. Perumov called one bet when the Q♣ hit the turn, then raised msp20 when the 4♥ hit the river. After a quick "omfg,", msp20 called to see Perumov show down 5♠ 4♦. He had flopped a pair and straight draw combination, then improved to trips.

msp20 was crippled by that pot. He doubled up once, but was quickly all in again with A♣ 5♠ against Perumov's K♦ 8♠. When a king and no ace hit the board, Perumov -- the player who said he thought he was better than his two opponents and therefore killed a deal -- was crowned the champion of SCOOP Event #20-L.

SCOOP Event #20-Low Limit Hold'em [6-max] results:

1st place: Perumov ($19,467.01)
2nd place: msp20 ($14,214.01)
3rd place: PokerTom681 ($10,382.41)
4th place: POKERDUUDE ($6,736.21)
5th place: boohoocry ($4,303.76)
6th place: drood ($2,193.91)

There are only two SCOOP events left. Get in on the action starting tomorrow. All of the pertinent information is on the SCOOP page. You can also track the results of the top performers on the leaderboard page. has also been hard at work putting together their usual fantastic video coverage of the SCOOP series.

Dave Behr
@PokerStars in SCOOP