SCOOP: thewh00sel bamboozles 'em in $215 Event 17 NLHE (1R+1A)

scoop2009_thn.gifA total of 1,809 players entered the "medium" stakes version of SCOOP Event No. 17 which carried an initial $200+$15 price tag. Each had the option of taking one rebuy ($200 for 2,500 chips) should he or she drop below the starting stack of 2,500 at any time during the rebuy period, as well as one add-on ($200 for 3,500 chips) once the rebuy period had ended. 1,236 players took rebuys, and 1,320 took the add-on, making for a total prize pool of $873,000, well above the tourney's $500K guarantee. That meant the top 270 players would be cashing, with the winner scheduled to earn a nifty $139,680.

A number of Team PokerStars Pros played in this one. Chris Moneymaker, Katja Thater, Andre Akkari, and Leo Fernandez were among the tourney's early casualties. Friends of PokerStars Darus Suharto and Tom McEvoy also failed to crack the top 1,000. Next from the team to go were SCOOP Event No. 14-L winner Hevad "RaiNKhAN" Khan (in 870th), Noah "Exclusive" Boeken (in 826th), and Gavin Griffin (in 796th). Incidentally, after busting here, Khan would final table the "high" version of SCOOP Event No. 17.

After a little over four hours, there were 700 players remaining, with lipster99 leading the way with 67,173, and Team PokerStars Pro Peter Eastgate close behind with 65,832. Barry "barryg1" Greenstein was also hovering just outside of the top twenty. Greenstein was additionally playing both the "medium" and "high" versions of Event No. 18 (Limit Omaha high/low event), and at that moment was in the top ten of both of those tourneys as well!

It took about six hours and 15 minutes for the cash bubble to burst. By that point we'd lost Team PokerStars Pros Chad Brown (487th), Marcin "Goral" Horecki (430th), and Gualter "stockcar99" Salles (380th). With 270 players remaining lipster99 was still sitting atop the leaderboard with 157,855 chips. Team PokerStars Pro Ivan Demidov had been in the top ten for much of the previous hour, and at that moment was sitting in 16th place. And Demidov's teammate Peter Eastgate was sitting in 24th. Still a long way to go, but how neat would it have been to have seen the top two finishers in the 2008 World Series of Poker Main Event back at a final table in this one?

wthorson.JPGWe didn't have very long to speculate about that, as Demidov hit an especially rough patch just after the bubble burst and ended up getting bounced out not a half-hour later in 214th place. With 150 players left, Team PokerStars pro William Thorson (pictured) had cracked the top ten. Then, after about eight-and-a-half hours of play, we were down to 100 players. Moorman1 was in first place with 359,680, and lipster99 was still riding high with 342,027. Thorson remained near the top in 9th place, his PS teammate Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso had moved up into 19th place, and Eastgate was still there in 27th. The only other Team PokerStars pro still alive at that point was Greenstein in 45th place. (Greenstein had finished his other tourneys, landing outside of the cash in both.)

Greenstein finally hit the rail in 72nd place, and Rousso followed him by going out in 44th. As play moved past the 10-hour mark, the field shrunk to 36 players sitting around four tables. lipster99 continued to maintain the lead with 1.17 million, well ahead of RandALLin in second with a little more than 770,000. The two remaining Team PokerStars pros were both in the top five, with Peter Eastgate in third and William Thorson in fifth.

Eastgate's nice run came up short however, and his night ended in 28th place. By the next break, they were down to just 20 players, with Thorson having pulled ahead of lipster99 thanks in part to Thorson's having survived a huge ace-king vs. ace-queen confrontation with the then chip leader:

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When they reached 18 players, the players were rearranged around two tables, and Thorson unfortunately now found himself with lipster99 seated to his immediate left. Gradually Thorson's stack went down, lipster99's stack went up, and Thorson went out in 11th. Then after PullenPots knocked out shinerrr in 10th, the final table was set:


Seat 1: julianherold -- 1,393,004
Seat 2: allofit29 -- 1,696,358
Seat 3: PullenPots -- 1,467,896
Seat 4: morello05 -- 1,350,176
Seat 5: fwchan -- 584,085
Seat 6: lipster99 -- 1,205,344
Seat 7: RandALLin -- 1,830,063
Seat 8: Mammola -- 770,169
Seat 9: thewh00sel -- 1,935,405

When the final table began, the players had already been playing for over 13 hours. They had reached Level 37, with 15,000/30,000 blinds and 3,750 antes. Since the average chip stack was nearly 1.36 million -- or about 45 big blinds -- that meant the players were still in for a lot more play before a winner would be decided.

However, action ensued fairly quickly, with the final table's first elimination coming after just one orbit. Action folded around to morello05 who raised to 63,895 from the button. fwchan then reraised all in to 552,836 from the small blind. Then lipster99 shoved all in as well from the big blind to the tune of 1,703,769. morello05 stepped aside, and fwchan showed A♠T♠ to lipster99's K♥K♠. The board came 6♥3♦T♦4♦6♣, and fwchan was rapidly sent away in 9th.

Over the next hour, thewh00sel gradually built a commanding chip lead, pushing up over 5 million chips while the other seven players averaged less than one million apiece. A hand arose in which the table folded around to big-stacked thewh00sel in the small blind who put in a big raise, and julianherold decided to call with all 380,807 chips. thewh00sel showed 9♠6♠ and julianherold K♥Q♥. But the board came 8♣4♠8♠7♣2♠, giving thewho00sel a flush and knocking julianherold out in 8th.

Shortly after that hand, morello05 was all in for 530,031 with A♥Q♠ and lipster99 made the call with 4♣A♣. Once again, the underdog sucked out the flush on the river, as the board came 2♣3♣6♦7♠8♣, giving lipster99 the club flush and sending morello05 to the rail in 7th.

Play went on six-handed for a short while. Then came three eliminations in quick succession, all thanks to RandALLin.

The first came on a cooler of sorts for allofit29 who shoved all in for 1.41 million from UTG with a pair of queens only to be met by RandALLin who held pocket kings. The board came jack-high, and allofit29 was our 6th-place finisher. Just three hands later, PullenPots got it all in preflop with K♥9♥ and it was RandALLin there waiting again, this time with pocket queens. The board came 3♣2♦J♦9♠5♣, and PullenPots was out in 5th. Then, three hands after that, RandALLin raised before the flop to 140,000, Mammola reraised all in to 1,266,680, and RandALLin called, showing A♦Q♦ to Mammola's A♣T♠. The board came eight-high, and RandALLin had knocked out another, sending Mammola home in 4th.

"jesus randall," typed thewh00sel. Just like that it was three-handed, and suddenly thewh00sel's chip lead had nearly evaporated with RandALLin having moved up to 5.59 million to thewh00sel's 5.74 million. lipster99 was far behind in 3rd with just under 895,000.

It took five more hands for thewh00sel to take care of lipster99, who shoved with Q♣Q♠ and was called by thewh00sel with A♠5♠. The flop -- T♦K♣5♥ -- and turn -- K♦ -- were okay for lipster99, but the river brought the 5♦, giving thewh00sel a boat and sending lipster99 out in 3rd.

That hand pushed thewh00sel to a small chip advantage when heads up play began with 6,628,228 to RandALLin's 5,604,272. The pair immediately agreed to discuss a chop, and when a "chip chop" was agreed upon, they then proceeded to play it out for the remaining $10,000 left on the table.

Because the stacks were so deep -- each player had around 100 big blinds when heads up began -- and because both players were patient enough to make it a tough battle for that extra $10,000, heads up play ended up lasting a long while, approximately 40 minutes. thewh00sel was able to build about a 3-to-1 chip advantage by the time the final hand went down, some 15-and-a-half hours after the tourney had begun.

thewh00sel minimum-raised from the small blind/button, RandALLin shoved with A♠5♦, and thewh00sel called with K♦K♣. The board came nine-high, and it was all over:

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SCOOP Event #17: $225 No-Limit Hold'em (1R+1A)

1. thewh00sel (Las Vegas) $128,476.91*
2. RandALLin (Greenville) $115,963.09*
3. lipster99 (Brooklyn) $78,570
4. Mammola (Richmond) $56,002.95
5. PullenPots (Picayune) $39,285
6. allofit29 (Dearborn Heights) $30,555
7. morello05 (Thunder Bay) $21,825
8. julianherold (Buchloe) $15,277.50
9. fwchan (Groningen) $8,730

*payouts reflecting two-way chop

We're getting ever closer to the big one, the SCOOP 2-day Main Event that starts Sunday with buy-ins of $109, $1,050, and $10,300. Check out all of the results and the remaining schedule over on the PokerStars SCOOP page.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in SCOOP