SCOOP: nikov K-Os kudos1017, wins Event #12-H, NLHE Knockout

SCOOP logo.gifThe "High" version of SCOOP Event No. 12 -- a "Knockout" no-limit hold'em event -- came with a $2,600 price tag. Two grand of that went to the prize pool, and $500 would be awarded as a bounty for each elimination. With 418 total entrants, that meant an $836,000 prize pool to be divided among the top 54 finishers, plus another $209,000 worth of bounties.

All in all a total of $1.045 million was up for grabs, more than tripling the $300,000 guarantee for this one. There was $160,428.40 awaiting the winner (plus whatever bounties he or she picked up as well).

Joking with Joe

As the first hands were being dealt, Shawn "buck21" Buchanan -- who, incidentally, took runner-up in SCOOP Event #3-High earlier this week -- saw Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem at his table, prompting buck21 to offer an extra $20 to the person who could knock out the 2005 WSOP champ. Hachem good-naturedly responded "only 20, tightwad?" That elicited a some "lol"-ing followed by a round of "gl" as players got down to business.


Team PokerStars Pro Joe Hachem

As it happened, it was only about 15 minutes into the tournament when Buchanan and Hachem found themselves involved in a huge hand. After a UTG raise, Buchanan had called from middle position, Hachem reraised behind him, the original raiser got out, and Buchanan called. The flop came jack-high, Buchanan bet, Hachem raised, and Buchanan called. Both checked the turn (a ten), then after a five came on the river, Buchanan shoved all in. Hachem thought a bit, then made the call showing K♦K♥ for the overpair. Buchanan showed J♥J♣ for the flopped set of jacks, and thus claimed one of the first $500 bounties of the day. Hachem wished his conqueror well from the rail.

JoeHachem: gl buck
buck21: thanks bud
JoeHachem: glad i could help
buck21: haha
buck21: unlucky

The Travails of Team PokerStars

Hachem's fellow Team PokerStars Pro Chris "Money800" Moneymaker would fare much better early on, collecting a few bounties and enjoying the chip lead for much of the second and third hours of play before eventually falling in 222nd. Other PS pros were also on the leaderboard early on, including Noah "Exclusive" Boeken, Martin "AABenjaminAA" Hruby, and Vanessa "LadyMaverick" Rousso.

A little over four hours in and Rousso had catapulted to the top of the chip counts, followed by govshark2 and WGC|Rider. Rousso would fall back to the pack, though with 100 players left was still right there in 24th. Joining her in the top 100 were Victor Ramdin (18th) and Boeken (61st). myzikant held the chip lead then, followed by delany_kid, mpiyavv, snowking_85, and chokitin.

By the eight-hour break, myzikant, snowking_85, and delaney_kid were still on top. LadyMaverick was out (in 73rd), but Boeken and Ramdin still had chips as the money bubble approached.

xthesteinx would soon claim Boeken's bounty. With the blinds 250/500, YanniYankiev raised to 1,222 from early position, and Boeken called from the button. xthesteinx then shoved all in for 21,300 from the big blind, prompting YanniYankiev to fold. Boeken instacalled, showing pocket aces, while xthesteinx held a pair of jacks. But the board came 9♠Q♦6♥T♣8♦, giving xthesteinx the straight and eliminating Boeken in 64th.

The Bubble Bursts

After nearly nine hours of play, Steve "MrSmokey1" Billirakis was the unfortunate bubble boy finishing 55th, with 1BigAceHole taking his bounty. Not long after that, Shawn "buck21" Buchanan, having gotten off to that good start versus Hachem, snuck into the cash to go out in 53rd. He was soon followed by the last Team PokerStars pro Victor Ramdin, who was cut down in 49th when his A♠J♠ couldn't catch up to Danny98765's A♣K♠.

At the ten-and-a-half hour mark, Tim "Tmay420" West was eliminated in 28th, and the remaining players assembled around the final three tables. It would take another hour to lose nine more. Here's how they went (each earning $5,852), with the bounty-collectors in parentheses:

27th -- Josh "nitbuster" Arieh (knocked out by Brock "t soprano" Parker)
26th -- Benjamin "xthesteinx" Zamani (Michael "I'am_Sound" Huber)
25th -- greenrizla (chokitin)
24th -- I'am_Sound (nikov)
23rd -- Fled (PKaiser)
22nd -- Ravi "govshark2" Raghavan (ryandawg15)
21st -- TheMuppet (Danny98765)
20th -- Mike "munchenHB" Telker (Kunal "kudos1017" Patel)
19th -- snowking_85 (garompon)

At that point nikov was the chip leader with a little over 326,000, well ahead of Danny98765 in second with 216,488 and kudos1017 (Kunal Patel) in third with 207,395. At Danny98765's table, players were discussing how many bounties each had collected, with Danny saying he'd grabbed "eight booya" thus far. That appeared to be the most anyone was claiming, although a few of the players seemed a little unsure themselves how many they'd won.

It would take another hour and 45 minutes for the next nine to go. Here's how they went, again with the bounty-winners in parentheses:

18th ($7,524) -- THE?CLUU (caecilius)
17th ($7,524) -- moledaddy (nikov)
16th ($7,524) -- mysikant (Todd "tbt4653" Terry)
15th ($9,196) -- twirlpro (caecilius)
14th ($9,196) -- PKaiser (kudos1017)
13th ($9,196) -- chokitin (Daryl "aaaaaaaa" Jace)
12th ($10,868) -- caecilius (Benjamin "delaney_kid" Delaney)
11th ($10,868) -- David "DonkCommitted" Miscikowski (ryandawg15)
10th ($10,868) -- tbt4653 (ryandawg15)

After nearly 13-and-a-half hours of play, the final nine had been set:


Seat 1: Kunal "kudos1017" Patel -- 269,383
Seat 2: Danny98765 -- 193,828
Seat 3: Daryl "aaaaaaaa" Jace -- 336,617
Seat 4: Benjamin "delaney_kid" Delaney -- 79,687
Seat 5: Brock "t soprano" Parker -- 126,617
Seat 6: nikov -- 240,294
Seat 7: garompon -- 275,166
Seat 8: BreakRibs -- 69,077
Seat 9: ryandawg15 -- 499,331

With blinds at just 1,250/2,500 (325 ante), that meant the average stack was over 58 big blinds when the final table began, meaning there was still likely a lot of poker to be played.

All About the Bounties, Baby

It was only a couple of orbits later, however, when Danny98765 opened for 7,725 from middle position, then delaney_kid raised to 15,555 from the cutoff. It folded back around and Danny98765 reraised to 183,000, well more than delaney_kid's remaining 58,032 which he called. Danny98765 showed A♥Q♣ and delaney_kid A♣J♥. The board ran out ten-high, and Danny98765 had collected another "booya" by eliminating Benjamin Delaney in ninth.

A little later nikov opened for 6,750 from the cutoff, and garompon -- winner of the 2009 SCOOP Event #14-H -- pushed all in for 52,546 from the button. ryandawg15 then called the raise from the big blind, nikov repopped it to 98,342, and ryandawg15 called that as well. Those two checked the Q♠2♣7♥ flop. The turn brought the 8♦. ryandawg15 checked, nikov bet 67,500, and ryandawg folded. nikov showed K♣Q♥ for queens while garompon had 6♥6♣. The river was the 4♦, and garampon was out in eighth.

About a half-hour passed before Danny98765 raised, Daryl "aaaaaaaa" Jace reraised all in with his last 68,791, and Danny98765 made the call, showing A♥7♥ to Jace's A♦Q♦. The flop came J♥2♥4♦, giving Danny98765 the flush draw, and the 8♥ on the turn completed it, sending Jace out in seventh.

"u wanted that 500," said Brock "t soprano" Parker in the chatbox afterwards. "IM ALL ABOUT THE BOUNTIES BABY," answered Danny98765. "IM DONE FOLDING." "scott seiver over here," joked Parker, alluding to Seiver's highly successful bounty hunting at the NAPT Venetian High Roller event back in February, where Ashton Griffin won but Seiver grabbed the most bounties.

Musical Mysteries, Soprano Sings

That hand put Danny98765 near the 600,000-chip mark and close to the leader, nikov. It also put him in a good mood, as evidenced by his chat.

He repeatedly offered his tablemates $200 if they could guess the song to which he was listening, and while the guesses were humorous -- Team PokerStars Pro Maridu Mayrinck guessed the theme song to "Dawson's Creek" from the rail -- none were able to win the name-that-tune bounty. For those playing along at home -- or who might find themselves playing this game with Danny98765 in the future -- the correct answers were "Slide Along Slide" by Shifty, and "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight" by Rush.

The remaining six would battle back and forth for more than an hour before the next elimination, during which time kudos1017 pushed out in front while ryandawg15 became the short stack. With the blinds 3,500/7,000 (875 ante), Brock "t soprano" Parker opened for 180,000 from the cutoff, and ryandawg15 pushed all in for 98,769 from the big blind. Parker called, showing A♠T♥, which ryandawg held A♣4♦. The flop -- 2♥A♦3♥ -- gave ryandawg some hope of possibly stealing the hand away, but the 8♥ turn and 3♦ meant t soprano was taking ryandawg's bounty, knocking him out in sixth.

KOs Keep Coming

After that long stretch with no eliminations, two more swiftly followed on the heels of ryandawg's departure.

Soon after nikov cripple BreakRibs (pun intended) after winning a race with A♣K♥ versus BreakRibs' pocket jacks. Soon after, nikov raised from UTG and BreakRibs -- down to just 25,233 -- pushed all in behind him. It folded back around, and nikov called with A♥6♦. BreakRibs had picked up K♠K♥, but the community cards would come 5♣6♣4♥6♥T♠, giving nikov trips and BreakRibs' bounty. Just four remained.

Just ten hands later, Danny98765 was down to 29,626 and was pushing all in from UTG, getting a caller in kudos1017 from the big blind. kudos17 showed K♣8♠ and Danny98765 Q♠9♦. The cards were dealt -- 4♣T♦4♥K♠6♣ -- and Danny98765 was out in fourth.

At the 16-hour break, nikov had the chip lead with 1.14 million, followed by kudos1017 with 533,790, and t soprano with 417,252.

Clobberin Time at the Knockout Event

A fairly interesting hand involving all three players followed. No showdown ultimately, but a half-million chip pot -- and the chip lead -- went to kudos1017 as a result. Take a look:

RSS readers click through to see replay

Brock "t soprano" Parker was the short stack of the three, but he wasn't ready just to lie on the canvas, as his answer to Mayrinck's question showed:

Maridu [Team Pro]: just out of curiosity what time is it for each of you guys?
t soprano: clobberin time
Maridu [Team Pro]: lol

Alas, Parker would be the next one to get clobbered. nikov opened with a raise to 19,500 from the button, kudos1017 folded, then Parker made it 58,500 from the big blind. nikov pushed all in, and Parker called with his remaining 311,842, showing A♠Q♠. nikov held J♠Q♥, and that would prove the better hand after the community cards came T♠9♣2♦K♠7♦, giving nikov the straight and sending Parker out of the ring in third.

When heads-up play began, nikov had the edge with 1,241,741 chips to kudos1017's 848,259. After a bit of back-and-forthing, nikov began to pull out in front, at one point enjoying a more than 9-to-1 chip lead. But Kunal "kudos1017" Patel battled back gamely, and soon they were nearly even again. Then Patel took the lead, and for a time it appeared he was on the verge of finishing off nikov. But nikov slugged his way back even, and then back out in front.

The heads-up prize fight continued. Past the one-hour mark. Past the two-hour mark. Neither was ready to give up his bounty and the title. But this wasn't a fight that could be settled by a decision. A knockout was needed.

At last, on the 222nd hand of heads-up, nikov had 1,739,584 chips to kudos1017's 350,416. With the blinds 8,000/16,000, nikov raised to 37,500 from the small blind/button, kudos pushed all in, and nikov called. nikov showed K♦J♣, ahead of kudos1017's Q♠8♦. And ahead he'd stay, as the board came 7♦4♥6♥4♣3♠.

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SCOOP Event #12-High No-Limit Hold'em w/Knockout Bounties results
1st place: nikov ($160,428.40)
2nd place: kudos1017 ($119,130)
3rd place: t soprano ($87,780)
4th place: Danny 98765 ($66,880)
5th place: BreakRibs (46,816)
6th place: ryandawg15 ($35,530)
7th place: aaaaaaaa ($27,170)
8th place: garompon ($18,810)
9th place: delaney_kid ($13,877.60)

It should be noted that those totals don't reflect the bounties which these final tablists also collected along the way. Congratulations to nikov for outlasting 417 opponents and enduring 18-and-a-half hours of defending his bounty to take the title!

Check the SCOOP page for more information and the full schedule of events.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in SCOOP