SCOOP 2016: Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo grabs second SCOOP title in Event #52-M ($215 NLHE, 8-Max, Sunday Warm-Up SE)

Back in 2012, Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo closed SCOOP out with an excellent day at the tables, taking down the $10,300 SCOOP-High Main Event for $798K after a three-way deal. The next three years passed without another champion's watch, and after 11 previous cashes without a final table, it looked like the same might hold true for SCOOP 2016. But after four years and two days of waiting, Nick Grippo has earned his second SCOOP title with another series-closing victory.

The final Sunday Warm-Up Special Edition of SCOOP 2016, Event #52-M kicked off at 11am ET yesterday. The 27 levels of 8-max poker played took the Day 1 field from 4,967 to under 150, paying out the majority of the 640 cashers in the process, including Team Pro's Liv Boeree (460th place, $397.36).

Team Online was well-represented in the payouts. Both Kosei "K.Ichinose" Ichinose (298th, $476.83) and Caio "Pessagno" Pessagno (234th, $516.56) cashed on Day 1, but Celeste "LadyMaCe86" Orona was still in the hunt with more than half the prize pool remaining when Day 2 began. Her run eventually came to an end in 97th place, good for $993.40.

By 3:48pm ET, all but these eight players had collected their payouts:

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Seat 1: pisha4 (2,704,519 in chips)
Seat 2: SergeiOrehov (6,460,110 in chips)
Seat 3: Squa1l (7,959,053 in chips)
Seat 4: Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo (25,321,391 in chips)
Seat 5: Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot (14,345,202 in chips)
Seat 6: Kley (5,045,176 in chips)
Seat 7: Gerardo "g3r4rd0x" Rodriguez (17,292,090 in chips)
Seat 8: passuare (20,212,459 in chips)

Blinds and antes were at 140K/280K/35K, putting pisha4 in immediate danger. The player from Belgium had last made a SCOOP final in 2011, taking third place in a Medium 6-max event, but this stay wouldn't last quite as long. pisha4 called from the big blind with 5♦ 5♣ after GripDsNutz raised to 622K, then opened all-in for 2M more when the flop came 4♦ 6♥ 3♣. GripDsNutz called behind with A♣ J♥ but took the lead on the J♣ turn, and the Q♠ river ended pisha4's tournament in 8th place ($7,450.50).

SergeiOrehov's stack had dropped by a about a quarter since the start of the final table. Then the Russian player picked up A♣ A♦ under the gun, raised the minimum, and got one caller in Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot. SergeiOrehov led for 725K on the 7♣ 8♦ 7♦ flop, and then again for 722K on the 6♣ turn after tonkaaaa called. tonkaaaa raised all-in then, showing 7♠ 7♥ for flopped quads when SergeiOrehov called. Drawing dead, the Russian player left in 7th place ($12,417.50).

About 15 minutes went by without a knockout, a stretch that saw the blinds and antes rise to 160K/320K/40K. That put added pressure on short stacks Kley and Squa1l, the latter of whom ended up raising all-in for 4.1M in the small blind with A♠ 8♦ after passuare opened for 640K on the button. passuare called with A♦ J♥ and made queens and jacks on the J♣ 9♥ Q♣ 7♦ Q♠ board to send Squa1l to the rail in 6th place ($28,808.60).


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After holding on to a 20-big-blind stack long enough to see it become a 17-big-blind stack when the stakes went up to 200K/400K/50K, Kley would be the next to go. The Swedish player moved all-in with A♦ K♣ over the top of tonkaaaa's opening raise and ended up in a race with Q♣ Q♦. Both of Kley's cards stayed live the whole way, but the 5♦ 6♦ J♠ 7♠ J♥ board provided no help, eliminating Kley in 5th place ($48,676.60).

Getting a grip

Half of the contenders had been accounted for in the first 43 minutes of play, leaving these four to chase the title:

Seat 4: Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo (34,835,920 in chips)
Seat 5: Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot (26,574,695 in chips)
Seat 7: Gerardo "g3r4rd0x" Rodriguez (13,041,982 in chips)
Seat 8: passuare (24,887,403 in chips)

Nick Grippo immediately put some distance between himself and the other three. On the first hand after Kley's departure, he made the fourth pre-flop bet for 6.6M in the small blind after g3r4rd0x opened for 840K and passuare re-raised to 2M on the button. g3r4rd0x folded, but passuare called and took the A♣ 7♠ 2♠ flop. The Brazilian player raised the minimum after Grippo opened for 3.8M, but Grippo's all-in three-bet ended the action in the 29.9M-chip pot.

passuare's 10.5M remaining chips dwindled to 8M before the Brazilian player picked up Q♦ Q♠ and re-raised all-in from the small blind over the top of g3r4rd0x's 800K opening bet. g3r4rd0x called with 7♥ 7♠ and 5M chips behind, which looked to be where he would be working from after the 8♥ 4♦ A♥ flop and K♦ turn, but the 7♦ river made a set to win the pot for the underdog. That dagger of a river card brought passuare's tournament to a close in 4th place ($68,544.60).

That pot gave g3r4rd0x 21.5M chips, but the deck didn't hold many more wins for the past Sunday Million and MicroMillions 7 winner. Three-handed play amplified the effect of 250K/500K/62.5K blinds and antes, and after 20 minutes g3r4rd0x was holding just 10.6M. He limped on the button with A♦ J♦ and then shoved when GripDsNutz made it 2M to go in the small blind. GripDsNutz called with 8♣ 8♠ and made two pair by the time the board read 4♠ 4♥ 3♥ 4♣ 3♠, taking the 21.8M-chip pot and knocking out g3r4rd0x in 3rd place ($88,412.60).

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Winning that pot gave Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo 69.1M chips as he began heads-up play in a SCOOP event for the first time in almost exactly four years. Past Super Tuesday winner and SCOOP 2016 Event #45-H 5th-place finisher Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot 30.1M. They immediately made a deal based on ICM, giving Grippo the bigger share of the money and leaving $12,000 on the table as a brief but entertaining run to the title began.

First Talbot won a race with T♣ T♥ to Grippo's K♠ Q♣ to take the lead by eight big blinds. Then Talbot jammed a few minutes later with 2♠ 2♥, only to have Grippo call and win with A♦ A♥. Talbot doubled to 26.1M two hands later with K♣ Q♣ to Grippo's J♣ J♦, and then reclaimed the lead one minute later after winning with A♦ Q♣ against Grippo's Q♥ 2♥. Then Grippo won with K♣ K♥ against Talbot's 7♣ 7♥ to get back to 81.6M in what would be the final lead change of this tournament. Three hands later, Grippo jammed on the button with K♣ 6♦ and Talbot called with Q♣ T♦. The king on the river of the A♦ 5♥ 7♠ 7♦ K♠ made a pair for Grippo, bringing this Sunday Warm-Up Special Edition to its conclusion.

Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot's share of the heads-up deal was $119,041.85. And Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo, after 11 previous SCOOP 2016 cashes with no final tables and three previous SCOOP series without a title, laid claim to $146,436.43 and his second career SCOOP champion's watch. Congratulations to him for another fine SCOOP closing day!

SCOOP-52-M ($215 NL Hold'em, 8-Max, Sunday Warm-Up SE) results
Entrants:
 4,967
Total prize pool: $993,400
Places paid: 640

1. Nick "GripDsNutz" Grippo (Canada) $146,436.43*
2. Parker "tonkaaaa" Talbot (Canada) $119,041.85*
3. Gerardo "g3r4rd0x" Rodriguez (Peru) $88,412.60
4. passuare (Brazil) $68,544.60
5. Kley (Sweden) $48,676.60
6. Squa1l (United Kingdom) $28,808.60
7. SergeiOrehov (Russia) $12,417.50
8. pisha4 (Belgium) $7,450.50
*Reflects the results of a two-way deal that left $12,000 in play for the winner


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Jason Kirk
@PokerStarsBlog in SCOOP