WCOOP Event #4 Final Table Report
It's last call at a singles bar. It's the end of the model year car sale. It's short-handed no-limit Texas Hold'em. In the words of a old college buddy, "Sometimes, boys, you just have to lower your standards."
In the case of WCOOP Event #4, those standards applied to starting hand selection. When the table sits only six players, and sometimes slips down to as low as three, you can't sit around and wait for aces all day long. You gotta go with what you hope will get you there, even if it is KJ offsuit under the gun.
After more than ten hours of play, six players had found a way to get there. Surviving to the final table meant a real money jump of no less than $12,000. These were the folks that made it happen.
Seat 1: SizDiz (Savannah, GA) 196,048
Seat 2: BABYHAN (Kitchener, ON, Canada) 1,205,245
Seat 3: XX RAGED XX (Long Branch, NJ) 488,909
Seat 4: wrap_99 (Belmont, CA) 835,984
Seat 5: luckyfire4 (Las Vegas, NV)1,134,914
Seat 6: dirkdiggler9 (Risskov, Denmark)2,001,400
All of what I wrote above notwithstanding, Savannah, Georgia's SizDiz was being picky. Just when it seemed unlikely the Peach Stater could go another hand without getting all of the chips in, the icon box read "fold," and the game moved on. What did all this mean? In short, it meant that SizDiz (at one time only holding two big blinds when the game was still at two tables) survived until the final table and moved up a full $12,000 in money.
While SizDiz was the talk of PokerStars Radio, the talk of just about everyone online was the hand that played out early in the final table between wrap_99 and luckyfire4, to be known henceforth as...
The 'What the hell?' hand
From the small blind, wrap_99 came in for a min-raise, making it $32,000 to go. In the big blind, luckyfire4 re-raised to $48,000. Wrap_99 called. The flop came out 2c4s3d. Wrap_99 check-called a $48,000 bet from luckyfire4. The turn was the four of hearts. Again, wrap_99 check-called a bet, this time $120,000. With all the raising and re-raising pre-flop, it was hard to believe the board was helping either player measurably, but, again, this is short-handed play and a battle of the blinds, so the range of holdings was w-i-d-e wide.
The river came as the three of clubs. AGAIN, wrap_99 check-called a bet, this time a full $250,000. Luckyfire4 must have hated to see the call. Why? Well, he was holding 6d7h. In short, he was playing the two pair on board with a seven kicker. Indeed, a seven kicker. What is remarkable about that? Well, he WON.
Yeah, the seven kicker won. How? What could wrap_99 possibly have held that let a seven kicker win on that board? Only a couple of hands, 5-2 or 6-2. Wrap_99 explained he was tired and had mis-read the board. Understandable. They had been playing for a long time. Nonetheless, it was a key $932,000 pot for luckyfire4 and might have had a lot to do with how the rest of the game played out.
The experts might tell you patience is less of a virtue in a short-handed game than in a full game. Tell that to SizDiz who by simply being patient (and hitting a key three-outer) made an extra $12,000. Finally, even patience couldn't put a whipping on the fates. SizDiz got AK all-in against the worst possible match-up: Luckyfire4's pair of aces. By the turn, SizDiz had opened up a four-outer for a straight, but the needed queen didn't come and SizDiz left in sixth place for $17,822.00, which by all accounts is better than the $5000 and change awarded to seventh place.
For most of the late evening, dirkdiggler9, the lone European at the final table, had been pushing people around with his monster stack. But luckyfire4 had been making quite a run and it seemed dirkdiggler9 had gone hopelessly card dead. Much like the character from whom he took his name, he stood on the precipice between stardom and disaster. (If you've not seen "Boogie Nights," make it a point to do so, but make sure all kids, clergy, and canines are out of the room, as it is as naughty as you might expect).
If dirkdiggler9 was card dead, XX RAGED XX was already card embalmed and in the ground. He finally made a stand with 66 and ran into BABYHAN's QQ. The queens held up and XX RAGED XX left in fifth place for a very respectable $22,512.00.
BABYHAN, Adult-Sized Hand
With four players remaining and the chips fairly even, wrap_99, who had been turning down deals for the better part of an hour, finally agreed to a chip percentage chop. Wrap_99, a writer from California, ended up happy with the deal and play resumed four-handed. After losing a sizable hand to BABYHAN, wrap_99 finally found a hand to go with. Holding KJ, he flopped top pair on a J7x board. Unfortunately for the Californian wordsmith, dirkdiggler9's cards had finally started breathing again. He'd flopped a set of sevens and sent wrap_99 to the rail in fourth place for $48,037.19.
The hand moved dirkdiggler very close to the chip lead, just behind BABYHAN, and set up the biggest confrontation in the tournament so far. Dirkdiggler came in for a raise and got re-raised by BABYHAN. Dirkdiggler9 raised again and BABYHAN just called. The pot was nearly $1.5 million before the flop came out 8sJdAc. Dirkdiggler9 immediately pushed the rest of his chips in...nearly $1.3 million. He held a pair of kings, which seemed to be very good when BABYHAN called with TsQs, amounting to a double-gutshot straight draw and backdoor flush draw.
A nine fell on the turn.
Indeed, a nine fell on the turn to lock Dirkdiggler9 out of the pot and knock him out of the game in third place. His winnings amounted to $50,483.31.
BABYHAN's win vaulted him to sizable chip-lead over luckyfire4. Down by about 2-1, luckyfire4 needed a hand to even the score. He found it on a susbsequent hand when his K4 made three of a kind fours on the river. With an ace on board, luckyfire4 got a big call out of BABYHAN. While we never saw BABYHAN's hand, one could assume that four on the river was a massive stroke of luck for luckyfire4.
Luckyfire4 never looked back after that. He took a 3-1 chip lead when BABYHAN called big bets through the flop and turn on a 2sTs7d/5c/4d board. BABYHAN folded on the river.
Then, came the ultimate hand, and one of the prettiest of the night. Luckyfire4 came in for a 3x the BB raise and got a call. The flop came dow T7T. Luckyfire putout the minimum bet and BABYHAN raised the pot. Luckyfire4 simply called. The jack of diamonds came on the turn, putting a second diamond on board. BABYHAN checked, luckyfire4 put out a tiny bet and got a call.
The river was the card that ended it. A third diamond to fill BABYHAN's king high flush (he held K4 in diamonds). What might have seemed a miracle river for BABYHAN was no more than the icing on the cake for luckyfire4. He held pocket sevens for the flopped full house. BABYHAN got all in and that was the ball game.
WCOOP Event #4 Final Table Results
1. luckyfire4 (Las Vegas, NV) $67,367.86
2. BABYHAN (Kitchener, ON, Canada) $55,948.63
3. dirkdiggler9 (Risskov, Denmark) $50,483.31
4. wrap_99 (Belmont, CA) $48,037.19
5. XX RAGED XX (Long Branch, NJ) $22,512.00
6. SizDiz (Savannah, GA) $17,822.00
Click here for a full list of players who cashed in this event.