newhizzle sizzles in 12/13 Sunday Million win

Sunday Million logo.jpgThe guarantee is $1.5 million. Has been for some time now. Even so, they still call it the "Sunday Million" -- a.k.a., the most popular Sunday "major" around. This week saw that massive guarantee easily met once again, as 8,358 players entered the $215 tournament, making for a total prize pool of $1,671,600. The top 1,260 finishers would be paid, with a whopping $245,897.13 scheduled to go to the winner.

After a little over five hours of play, the money bubble had long burst and the field had been whittled down to 500 players. With the average stack 167,160, sejmajneim sat atop the leaderboard with 984,663, followed by jfyjfy6 (762,347) and KingDonation (678,831). While most of the stable of Team PokerStars pros were in action today, just Hevad "RaiNKhaN" Khan, Chris "Money800" Moneymaker, and Vlad Zguba remained alive with chips with 500 left, although all three were relatively short-stacked.

Moneymaker would last to 444th. A little later, with 378 players left, a moderator had chimed in over at Table 389 to respond to some chat. Metsfan512 took the opportunity to make a suggestion on behalf of the field.

Metsfan512: we'd like to discuss a deal

They weren't asked, but it was assumed the other 377 players weren't quite ready to talk about chopping up the remaining prize pool.

Let's say we suddenly entered into some bizarre universe where all 378 did want to make a deal. And even stranger, let's say they all decided to ignore chip counts and just to split the remaining prize pool up evenly. What would they have received? Well, at that point there was still a hefty $1,314,600.06 of prize money left to be awarded. Leaving the $30,000 aside for the winner -- as the terms for chopping dictate must occur -- that would mean each of the 378 remaining players would get $3,398.41. That's better than 28th place prize money!

Of course, they played on, and soon tyson219 knocked out the Ukrainian Zguba in 316th place. Khan was severely short-stacked for a while, but managed to survive, then, eventually, thrive. At the seven-hour mark just 100 players remained and Khan was right in the middle of the pack in 53rd. At that point the chip leader was 403vader with 2.83 million, followed by Mark "newhizzle" Newhouse (2.089 million), PSANDTT (2.088 million), Daniel "amichaiKK" Makowsky (2.03 million), and JazzyFace (1.72 million).

With 50 left, Run dat Game had moved into the lead with 4.48 million, followed by amichaiKK and newhizzle, with RaiNKhan in 23rd. As the tourney crossed the eight-hour mark, 40 remained and Khan had catapulted into the lead with 5.27 million, followed by Run dat Game and seppmann7. With 30 left, newhizzle had moved back in front with 5.72 million, with Khan slipping to seventh. And with 20 left, TheTaker was in front with 9.17 million, followed by seppmann7 and amichaiKK, dylanmarks25, and newhizzle, with Khan in 13th and Amit "AMAK316" Makhija in 14th.

Following a few more eliminations, a couple of huge pots between rockyone123 and seppmann7 resulted in the latter busting in 13th place and rockyone123 rocketing up into first with more than 26 million. That was more than 15 million ahead of second-place TheTaker with 9.8 million, and nearly a third of the chips in play with 12 players remaining. Hitting the rail soon after were both amichaiKK (12th) and AMAK316 (11th). With 10 players left, rockyone123 was dominating one five-handed table with 28.8 million, while newhizzle had assumed control of the other with his stack of 19.4 million. Finally, Raindrops_69's pocket kings outlasted TheTaker's pocket tens to knock TheTaker out in 10th, and the final nine were set:

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Seat 1: Stev0L_ -- 7,329,307
Seat 2: rockyone123 -- 28,645,587
Seat 3: DeuceBuster -- 7,090,637
Seat 4: troyones -- 2,375,282
Seat 5: RaiNKhAN -- 6,098,972
Seat 6: dyplo -- 1,048,384
Seat 7: newhizzle -- 19,394,266
Seat 8: dylanmarks25 -- 2,461,479
Seat 9: Raindrops_69 -- 9,136,086

With the blinds 150,000/300,000 (ante 30,000), Raindrops_69 was quickly in action again, raising to 633,678 from the cutoff, only to see Stev0L_ reraise all in for 6,574,307 from the button. The blinds got out, and Raindrops_69 quickly called, showing 9♣9♦ to Stev0L_'s 7♣7♦. The flop came K♥9♥2♥, further securing Raindrops_69's lead. The turn was the J♥, providing Stev0L_ with hopes of a chop, but the river was the K♣, and Stev0L_ was out in ninth.

Not longer after that came another big battle of pocket pairs, this one involving Hevad Khan. newhizzle opened with a min-raise to 600,000 from UTG, and rockyone123 called from middle position. Khan then shoved all in for 5,608,972 from the small blind. newhizzle folded, but rockyone123 promptly called, showing K♠K♥ to Khan's J♣J♠. The board came 5♦A♣2♥5♥3♣, and Khan hit the rail in eighth.

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Hevad "RaiNKhan" Khan -- 8th place finisher in 12/13/09 Sunday Million

The remaining seven battled for a couple more orbits, then with the blinds up to 200,000/400,000 (ante 40,000), DeuceBuster raised to 850,000 from early position and it folded around to dylanmarks25 in the big blind who reraised all in for a touch more to 886,479. DeuceBuster called, showing A♦2♦ to dylanmarks25's 5♦4♦. The community cards were A♠8♥7♣J♣A♥, and dylanmarks25 was out in seventh.

With six remaining, rockyone123 continued to maintain the lead with 29 million, followed closely by newhizzle with 26.1 million. A short-stacked troyones open-pushed from UTG+1 for 1,915,846 with K♦K♣ and got called by Raindrops_69 in the small blind who held A♦9♣. The flop came 8♣9♥3♥, giving Raindrops_69 a pair of nines but troyones still was well in front. But the turn was the 9♠, making trips for Raindrops_69. The river was the J♦, and troyones was out in sixth.

Next it was dyplo's turn to open-shove from under the gun for 1,160,304. DeuceBuster called from the big blind, showing A♥Q♣ to dyplo's J♠9♦. The flop was good for dyplo -- J♣6♦5♣ -- and the turn brought the 4♦, meaning dyplo was still ahead. But the river brought the A♦, giving DeuceBuster the better pair and knocking dyplo out in fifth.

In the very next hand, DeuceBuster was all in with pocket tens against newhizzle's pocket kings and managed to draw a third ten, moving DeuceBuster up to 28 million and a virtual tie with rockyone123, and dropping newhizzle to 12.2 million, a bit behind Raindrops_69 who had 14.6 million. Those four would engage in a lengthy battle, and over the next half-hour newhizzle would gradually claim back most of what he'd lost to DeuceBuster to move back into second behind rockyone123.

The quartet continued to scrap, and DeuceBuster continued to slide. Finally, 45 minutes after the prior elimination -- after some 80 hands of four-handed play -- came the next knockout. With the blinds up to 400,000/800,000 (ante 80,000), newhizzle raised to 1.6 million from UTG, then DeuceBuster shoved over the top for 6,424,438 from the big blind. newhizzle called with K♣J♠, and would need help to overcome DeuceBuster's A♠8♣. None came from the first four cards -- 2♥4♣3♦3♣ -- but the river brought the J♦, and DeuceBuster was gone in fourth.

In contrast to the lengthy back-and-forthing during four-handed play, the next two eliminations would come in rapid fashion. Seven hands later, chip leader newhizzle open-raised all in and the short stack Raindrops_69 called with his last 8,998,012, showing A♥2♣ to newhizzle's K♥5♠. The flop was Q♠A♠Q♥, and Raindrops_69 appeared in decent shape. But the turn and river brought two more spades -- 4♠3♠ -- giving newhizzle a flush and knocking Raindrops_69 out in third.

Heads-up play then lasted exactly one hand. At that point, newhizzle had 57,535,064 to rockyone123's 26,044,936. newhizzle raised to 1.6 million from the small blind/button, rockyone123 reraised to 4 million, newhizzle pushed all in, and rockyone123 called. rockyone123 showed A♣T♠ and newhizzle J♦J♥. The board came 6♠4♣4♥Q♠2♣, and newhizzle's jacks held, giving him the win and the nearly quarter-million dollar prize.

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Congratulations to Mark "newhizzle" Newhouse for his victory in the Sunday Million! Be sure to come back to the PokerStars blog for recaps of all of the Sunday Tournaments.

$1,500,000 Guarantee Sunday Million Results (12-13-09)

1. newhizzle -- $245,897.13
2. rockyone123 -- $179,697.00
3. Raindrops_69 -- $125,370.00
4. DeuceBuster -- $83,580.00
5. dyplo -- $66,864.00
6. tryones -- $50.148.00
7. dylanmarks25 -- $33,432.00
8. Team PokerStars Pro Hevad "RaiNKhaN" Khan -- $18,387.60
9. Stev0L_ -- $12,954.90

Martin Harris
@hardboiledpoker in Sunday Million