SCOOP 2014: bencb789 for the win after four-way chop in Event #22-H ($2,100 NLHE)

The first of two marquee two-day, $2,100 no-limit hold'em events starting yesterday has completed, with bencb789 of Germany topping a field of 949 in Event #22-H to earn the SCOOP watch and a nice $243,367.45 payday following a four-handed deal. RasA86, alex987, and softcored likewise realized big scores following the chop, with those four having beaten out a tough group including multiple-'COOP champ Dan "djk123" Kelly who took eighth in the event. Here's the story of bencb789's triumph and all of the heady competition that had to be outlasted for that to happen.

Day 1: From 949 to 45

The field of 949 meant a total prize pool of $1,898,000, well over the event's $1 million guarantee, with the top 108 finishers dividing those riches. Team PokerStars Pro Maxim Lykov would rise to the top of the counts during the late afternoon and early evening during Day 1, remaining the pace-setter during the fourth and fifth hours of the event until the chase pack caught up.

Then about halfway through the first day of play it was ismo<3seppo who would be the first player to 100,000 in this one, crossing that mark just before the six-hour mark, then being the first to 200,000 by the end of seventh hour.

As the field shrunk below 200 players and the bursting money bubble began to approach, it was Bryn "BrynKenney" Kenney working his way to the top of the counts while ismo<3seppo remained in the top five and Lykov slipped back below the average.

Also still in the hunt was then was Team Online member Randy "nanonoko" Lew, but then both of the remaining red spades were suddenly struck from the counts in short order as Lykov went out in 151st, then Lew's pocket kings were cracked by OtB_RedBaron to send nanonoko railward 40 spots shy of the cash in 149th.

At about the 10-and-a-half-hour mark of the day the bubble burst, and with 108 left hdjgkfkgsdl and Hoegh93 were leading as the only players over 300,000. ismo<3seppo would pass both, however, and soon reclaim first position as the night wound to its close.

Finally after about 12-and-a-half hours of poker they'd come to the last hand of Level 22 and the scheduled end of the night, with Bryn Kenney having slipped to fall in 78th for a $4,934.80 cash. Meanwhile ismo<3seppo had continued to thrive having accumulated a little more than 975,000, and after having bet the turn versus Mr.Ingenious was poised to add a little more by collecting the last pot of the night.

As Mr.Ingenious went into the time bank to decide what to do, ismo<3seppo took to the chat box.

ismo<3seppo said, "i have to win this"
ismo<3seppo said, "to get the million ^^ ;)"
ismo<3seppo said, "lets not play the stacks this hand"
ismo<3seppo said, "that we can continue tomorrow ^^"

Finally after more than a minute of thinking about it, Mr.Ingenious folded.

Mr.Ingenious: gg all
ismo<3seppo: gl
Mr.Ingenious: gl ismo
Mr.Ingenious: see u later, hopefully

With 45 players left, ismo<3seppo had indeed reached the 1 million-chip mark to carry a large lead into Monday's final day. Here's how the top 10 looked overnight, with ismo<3seppo one of three Finnish players among them along with four Germans:

1. ismo<3seppo (Finland) -- 1,009,198
2. DSmunichlife (Germany) -- 533,780
3. turataika (Finland) -- 527,947
4. Face333x (Germany) -- 477,712
5. alex987 (Russia) -- 358,258
6. softcored (Sweden) -- 356,022
7. hgjgkfkgsdl (Germany) -- 343,860
8. PikkuHUMPPA (Finland) -- 326,478
9. txyz0234 (Germany) -- 298,206
10. Zach "nofingclue11" Clark (Mexico) -- 279,619

Day 2: From 45 to 1

Play restarted at 11:00 ET on Monday, and an hour later they were down to 32 with Luke "lb6121" Schwartz (44th, $7,022.60), Javier "Anguila" Etayo (43rd, $7,022.60), Alexandru "tilt21sted" Papazian (36th, $7,971.60), and SCOOP #11-M ($215 NLHE) runner-up hotmark777 (33rd, $7,971.60) among the eliminated. Nine more would be knocked out during the second hour of the day, including Niall "firaldo87" Farrell (31st, $7,971.60), Amir "AmirSF" Lehavot (30th, $7,971.60), and Aidan "whereisdonny" Tam (25th, $9,110.40).

ismo<3seppo continued to lead although hgjgkfkgsdl had surged upwards to close the gap and join the 1 miillion-chip club as well.

Joseph "bigegypt" Elpayaa (23rd), Michael "moneyinbag" Aron (22nd), Dan "Danny98765" Smith (21st), Laurynas "LaurisL91" Levinskas (20th), and ZloyBarsuk (19th) next fell, each earning $9,110.40 for their finishes, and with 18 left ismo<3seppo still led the way with more than 1.2 million.

GOGOGOGO#1 (18th), Miss Baxter (17th), and DSmunichlife (16th) would next depart, each earning $12,906.40. ismo<3seppo would then start to slip in the counts as Hoegh93 (15th), Mr.Ingenious (14th), and Face333X (13th) fell, with those three earning $16,702.40 each.

ismo<3seppo would then be eliminated in 12th, followed by Killer_ooooo (11th) and pyszalek (10th) with each claiming $20,498.40 of the prize pool. After almost four-and-a-half hours of Day 2 and with bencb789 the new chip leader with more than 2.2 million, the final table was underway.


Seat 1: alex987 (Russia) -- 776,986
Seat 2: turataika (Finland) -- 825,901
Seat 3: Rasmus "RasA86" Agerskov (Denmark) -- 1,247,293
Seat 4: PikkuHUMPPA (Finland) -- 1,287,144
Seat 5: Dan "djk123" Kelly (Australia) -- 910,754
Seat 6: bencb789 (Germany) -- 2,235,407
Seat 7: softcored (Sweden) -- 1,087,934
Seat 8: Zach "nofingclue11" Clark (Mexico) -- 303,800
Seat 9: hdjgkfkgsdl (Germany) -- 814,781

hdjgkfkgsdl hits rail in ninth

It took about 15 minutes for the first final table elimination to occur. The blinds were up to 10,000/20,000, and after hdjgkfkgsdl raised to 40,000 from the cutoff, alex987 reraised to 80,000, and the blinds folded, hdjgkfkgsdl pushed all in for 359,820 total and alex987 called.

hdjgkfkgsdl appeared in good shape to double up with K♦K♠ versus alex987's 9♣9♥, but the flop came J♠9♠3♦ to give alex987 a set, and after the 2♣ turn and Q♣ river hdjgkfkgsdl was out in ninth.

Kelly knocked out in eighth

It would take an hour and 40 minutes before another knockout would come, and it would take a couple more players drawing pocket pairs for it to happen. And another bad beat.

Dan "djk123" Kelly -- here seeking a third SCOOP title to go along with his four WCOOP wins -- had slipped back to about 20 big blinds when he opened with a min-raise to 70,000 from middle position. It folded to softcored in the cutoff seat who reraised all in for almost 800,000 (just a little more than what Kelly had to start the hand), and when it folded back to Kelly he swiftly called all in with the 692,893 he had left behind.

Kelly had A♥A♣ and like hdjgkfkgsdl before appeared primed to score a big double-up versus softcored's T♠T♦. Then the flop came K♠T♣Q♥ to hit softcored's pair. Kelly could still draw a straight, but the K♥ turn card took away that possible escape by giving softcored a full house. The J♣ then fell on the river -- too little, too late, for Kelly who had to leave satisfied with a second eighth-place finish in this year's SCOOP after taking eighth in Event #16-H ($1,050+R NLHE, Big Antes).


Dan "djk123" Kelly

turataika taken out in seventh

Soon after Kelly's exit, softcored was getting involved again with a 2x raise to 80,000 from under the gun, then turataika reraised all in for 555,453 from the cutoff and softcored called.

turataika had A♥J♠ and needed improvement to survive against alex987's 9♣9♥. But the 7♦9♦3♥ flop hit alex987's nines to make yet another set, and after the A♦7♠ runout turataika's run had ended in seventh.

No watch for nofingclu11, out in sixth

Five hands later, softcored again was opening for 80,000 from the cutoff, then Zach "nofingclue11" Clark reraise-shoved from the button for 598,825. It folded to RasA86 in the big blind who pushed all in over the top for more than 1.05 million, and softcored called.

RasA86: A♠K♥
softcored: K♠K♦
nofingclue11: A♦J♠

The flop fell A♣4♣8♥, pairing both nofingclue11 and RasA86 although the latter had the better kicker. The turn was the 2♣ and river the 3♣, and with the seven-hour break of the day approaching nofingclue11 was out and they were down to five.

PikkuHUMPPA picked off in fifth

They'd play on for another half-hour with alex987 out in front with more than 3.86 million, RasA86 next with about 2.35 million, bencb789 in third position with almost 1.84 million, softcored having slipped back to almost 870,000, and 2/11/14 Super Tuesday winner PikkuHUMPPA the short stack with a little over 550,000.

Then with the blinds at 25,000/50,000, RasA86 raised to 100,777 from the button, then PikkuHUMPPA reraised to 545,814 from the small blind and RasA86 called. PikkuHUMPPA had A♠8♦ and RasA86 K♥J♥. The flop came 9♠3♠J♦, giving RasA86 jacks. The turn was the 8♣ and river the 7♣, and PikkuHUMPPA was done in fifth.

A sng-machine, a maniac Russian, a Swedish short stack, and the chip leader

It wasn't long after PikkuHUMPPA was eliminated that the remaining four began to talk in earnest about possibly making a deal.

RasA86: We can have a look, but I want a serious deal here guys.. Honestly rather play, but we can look
bencb789: same here
alex987: just look
bencb789: click
softcored: ive clicked

At the time RasA86 was leading with 3,806,185, alex987 next with 2,562,216, bencb789 third with 2,166,101, and softcored fourth with 954,498. Both "ICM"-based figures and "chip chop" numbers were presented, leaving $20,000 for which to play in both cases.

As usual, "chip chop" numbers offered more to the leader, which RasA86 liked, while the others preferred the "ICM"-based figures. "ICM numbers favours the shortstacks," typed RasA86, to which softcored insisted "ICM favours nobody." RasA86 continued to argue that "chip chop" numbers were fair:

RasA86: It is fair when Im in the bets position
RasA86: chipleader and position on 2nd
bencb789: i have position on you
softcored: haha
bencb789: so why giving you money
bencb789: i want 2k more from you
softcored: and im shortstack and a actionjunkie
bencb789: i dont care midstacking
bencb789: played sngs for 5 years buddy so lets go
alex987: ras r u ready flip 100K next hand?
softcored: ok so you got a sng-machine, a maniac russian and a swedish shortstack. Is your position that good?

In the end, "ICM"-based figures were used, with alex987 agreeing to give just $1K to RasA86. With $20K and the watch still in play, the tournament resumed.

softcored stopped in fourth

Soon after play restarted, softcored doubled up with A♣2♦ through alex987's 8♣8♥ when the board ran out Q♦2♣2♠A♥A♠. But soon after that bencb789 claimed most of softcored's stack in another preflop all-in confrontation when bencb789's J♠J♥ held versus softcored's K♥9♥.

Then with the blinds at 30,000/60,000, RasA86 raised to 120,777 from the button, bencb789 called from the small blind, softcored pushed all in from the big blind for 177,895 total, and both RasA86 and bencb789 called.

The flop came 8♦K♠5♥, and bencb789 check-called a bet of 225,474 from RasA86. Both then checked the 7♦ turn, and when the river brought the 3♠ and a bet of 660,000 from bencb789, RasA86 folded.

bencb789 had 9♣7♣ for sevens, better than the pair of treys softcored had made with 9♦3♦, and the latter was out in fourth.

Rough flop runs RasA86 out third

Shortly after that hand RasA86 was raising again from the button, this time for 122,400, and getting one caller in bencb789 from the small blind. The pair were the big stacks among the final three, with bencb789 starting the hand with over 4.75 million, RasA86 having 3.52 million to begin, and alex987 with about 1.21 million watching them go at it.

The flop came T♠J♦9♠. bencb789 checked, RasA86 bet 130,920, bencb789 raised to 374,000, RasA86 reraised to 832,220, bencb789 shoved, and RasA86 called all in.

RasA86 had flopped a straight with Q♠8♥, but bencb789 had also flopped a straight -- and a better one -- with K♠Q♦. The turn was the 4♥ and river the 2♣, and RasA86 was suddenly on the sideline in third.

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bencb987 bounces alex987, earns title

Heads-up play began with bencb789 way in front with 8,347,115 to alex987's 1,142,885. Both were making their second final tables of the 2014 SCOOP, with bencb789 having finished fourth in Event #6-H ($700+R NLHE, Turbo) and alex987 having taking sixth in Event #17-H ($2,100 FL Omaha Hi/Lo).

alex987 would battle gamely, chipping up at first before getting knocked back down to less than 720,000. Then -- exactly nine hours after Day 2 had started -- the final hand took place.

With the blinds 40,000/80,000, alex987 raised to 160,000, bencb789 shoved all in, and alex987 called to show A♣5♦ to bencb789's Q♦T♦. The 9♥9♠Q♣ flop better suited bencb789's hand, and after the 2♣ turn and 8♠ river, bencb789's two pair won the hand and the last of alex987's chips.

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Congratulations to bencb789 for topping a tough field and competitive final table to win Event #22-H, the latest SCOOP watch, and a $243K-plus cash prize. Kudos also to RasA86 who took away more than a quarter million from the prize pool thanks to the four-way chop, and to alex987 and softcored as well for ensuring themselves huge paydays.

SCOOP 22-H: $2,100 NL Hold'em
Entrants: 949
Total prize pool: $1,898,000.00
Places paid: 108

1. bencb789 (Germany) $243,367.45*
2. alex987 (Russia) $232,055.62*
3. RasA86 (Denmark) $257,131.84*
4. softcored (Sweden) $181,332.09*
5. PikkuHUMPPA (Finland) $97,747.00
6. nofingclue11 (Mexico) $78,767.00
7. turataika (Finland) $59,787.00
8. Dan "djk123" Kelly (Australia) $41,945.80
9. hdjgkfkgsdl (Germany) $24,294.49

*= reflects the results of a four-way deal that left $20,000 in play for the winner

There's still nearly a week's worth of the Spring Championship of Online Poker left to go. Check out the 2014 SCOOP homepage for a full schedule as well as results thus far in the online tournament series.

Martin Harris is Freelance Contributor to the PokerStars Blog.

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in SCOOP