WCOOP 2016: mighty28 tops Phil "MrSweets28" Galfond for Event #77 title ($215 NL Hold'em Sunday Warm-Up SE])

Phil "MrSweets28" Galfond has won a lot of things in poker-- two WSOP bracelets, millions of dollars, and a reputation as one of the most talented cash game players in the world. One thing he hasn't won? A 'COOP title. Galfond came close a couple times. He was runner-up in the 2014 SCOOP $2,100 PLO 6-Max and fourth this year in the SCOOP $2,100 PLO Heads-Up event. Tonight he had another opportunity to claim the top spot, but fell just short. Instead, it was Danish upstart mighty28 who came away with the win after bringing a huge chip lead into the final table and riding it all the way to the finish.

This special edition of the Sunday Warm-Up drew 6,200 players who made 3,466 entries and drove the prize pool up to $1,933,200.00. 1,191 places were paid, with first place set to earn $264,885.15.

Day 1 lasted for 27 levels and concluded with 394 players remaining. The U.K.'s SheganHilaly held the overnight chip lead with 2,066,343, but ultimately busted in 80th place.

Nearly eight hours after action resumed on Day 2, the field was down to nine players. The blinds were 300,000/600,000 when short stack JahJah1992 open-shoved for 5.62 million on the button and paleta25 called from the big blind. JahJah1992 had run K♠J♣ right into A♣A♦. He did not catch up on the Q♠J♦4♦6♦6♣ board and went out in ninth place, sending us to the final table.

2016_WCOOP_Ev77_FT.jpg

Final table chip counts

Seat 1: mighty28 (61,872,234 in chips)
Seat 2: paleta25 (24,611,664 in chips)
Seat 3: SwalzB (14,447,058 in chips)
Seat 4: vick23789 (13,431,863 in chips)
Seat 5: MrSweets28 (15,310,540 in chips)
Seat 6: RescueGrp (14,726,866 in chips)
Seat 7: pads1161 (31,980,725 in chips)
Seat 8: Hitvil (16,939,050 in chips)

The first major confrontation at the final table was a battle of the WCOOP champions. Hitvil opened for 1,375,000 from UTG, 2015 WCOOP titleholder vick23789 called from the cutoff, and Patrick "pads1161" Leonard, a two-time champion, who added his second title only four days ago, came along from the big blind. The flop fell 9♣4♦3♣ and pads1161 checked to Hitvil, who bet 1,800,000. Vick23789 raised to 3.6 million and pads1161 came over the top for 5.4 million. Hitvil got out of the way and vick23789 called. The turn brought the 4♣ and pads1161 bet 11,984,999, effectively setting vick23789 all-in, before remarking "I go for a pee." As pads1161 apparently relieved himself, vick23789 went into the tank. After a long think, vick23789 elected to save his remaining chips and folded, prompting pads1161 to flash the A♠T♣-- ace-high and a flush draw. Vick23789 was positively apoplectic.

vick23789: boly ****
vick23789: holy ****
vick23789: u dont want to know what i mucked

Vick23789 lost more than half his stack on the hand and was left with 5.46 million, while pads1161 moved up to 40.6 million. A short time later, the blinds were up to 400,000/800,000 and chip leader mighty28 opened for 2 million. Vick23789 three-bet shoved for 5.58 million from the small blind and mighty28 called. Mighty28's 7♣7♠ flopped a set vs. vick23789's A♦Q♣, and he hit the rail in eighth place.

The blinds rose to 500,000/1,000,000 and with the action folded around to him in the small blind, SwalzB open-shoved for 20 million from the small blind with A♥9♠. Unfortunately for him, Phil "MrSweets28" Galfond woke up with A♠K♠ in the big blind and called all-in for 18.6 million. MrSweets28's dominating hand took a backseat on the T♥9♦7♦ flop as SwalzB paired his kicker, but the K♣ turn reversed SwalzB's fortunes. The river was the A♣ and MrSweets28 scored a huge double-up to 40 million, good for second in chips, while SwalzB was left with only 514k, little more than one small blind. Although SwalzB quadrupled up on the next hand and moved up to 2 million, he never recovered. Four hands later, SwalzB was eliminated in seventh place when his 6♥7♥ fell to paleta25's 3♠6♣ on a Q♦Q♥3♦A♣3♣ board.

RescueGrp was down to 12.9 million when he found J♣J♥ and open-shoved from UTG. Two to his right, Hitvil re-shoved for 17.4 million and much to his chagrin, turned over K♦K♣.

"For real.........," RescueGrp lamented.

The 6♣5♥4♣8♠4♦ board brought him no help and the Dane exited in sixth place.

Paleta25 was third in chips to start, but the massive blinds got the best of him midway through this final table. Down to 9.7 million with the blinds up to 600,000/1,200,000, he three-bet shoved from the small blind with 5♦5♠ and initial raiser mighty28 called with A♠Q♣. It was all but over for paleta25 as the flop came down A♥Q♥9♥, making mighty28 top two pair. Paleta25 didn't get the five he needed on the turn or river and he departed in fifth place.

When four-handed play commenced, mighty28 was the runaway chip leader with 99.5 million, MrSweets28 was second with 51.5 million, Hitvil held 31.1 million and pads1161 was the short stack with 11.1 million.

Pads1161 steadily lost ground and was down to 6.5 million when he open-shoved with Q♦9♥ UTG. Both Hitvil and MrSweets28 called and checked down the A♣Q♠5♥T♦A♥ board. MrSweets28 had only K♦8♦ for king-high and pads1161 doubled to 20.7 million with aces and queens.

Pads1161 had chipped up to 28.1 million when the action folded to MrSweets28 in the small blind. He open-shoved for 32.6 million and pads1161 called with K♦Q♦. MrSweets28 revealed A♥2♠ and paired up when the flop came down 9♦8♦2♥, while pads1161 picked up a flush draw. The 3♣ turn was a blank for both players, but pads1161 missed his outs when the A♣ rivered, giving MrSweets28 aces and deuces. MrSweets28 moved up to 61.1 million in chips while pads1161 hit the rail in fourth place.

Patrick Leonard-EPT-13-Barcelona-1838-thumb-450x300-295403.jpgPatrick "pads1161" Leonard, fourth place

As play turned three-handed, Hitvil asked his opponents if they wanted to look at numbers. Mighty28 was amenable to it, but MrSweets28 warned them that he wasn't sure he wanted to make a deal.

Hitvil: numbers guys?
mighty28: we can look
MrSweets28: we can look but I'm not sure I want to deal
MrSweets28: nothing personal
MrSweets28: but I'll look

However, before everyone could click the button and pause the action, mighty28 opened for 4 million on the button and Hitvil shoved for 25.5 million from the big blind with A♥9♣. Mighty28 called and revealed two red queens. The queens stayed in the lead on the J♠9♥5♠ flop and turned a set when the Q♣ fell. The 9♠ river made mighty28 queens full and Hitvil was suddenly out in third place.

phil-galfond.jpgPhil "MrSweets28" Galfond

Heads-up chip counts

Seat 1: mighty28 (135,126,348 in chips)
Seat 5: MrSweets28 (58,193,652 in chips)

Anyone want do the math on the probability of two people with the number 28 in their screenname getting heads-up in this thing? No? OK, moving on...

It appeared too late to make a deal and our final two decided to play it out. Although an $81k pay jump might be a fortune for most of us, MrSweets28 plays cash game pots that size on a regular basis and is considered one of the best heads-up players in the game. Still, he joked that mighty28 should take it easy on him.

MrSweets28: take it easy on me
mighty28: put godmode off
MrSweets28: in a few hours I will
MrSweets28: just have to last that long and you're good

MrSweets28 was at a 2.3 to 1 chip deficit to start the heads-up match, but he narrowed the gap a bit when he check-called the flop and check-raised the turn on a 9♦9♥2♠7♠ board. Mighty28 gave up his hand and MrSweets28 moved up to 53.8 million. However, mighty28 reclaimed those chips only a few hands later. After three-betting pre and firing out 4.5 million on a 7♦6♠5♣ flop, mighty28 checked the 4♣ turn. MrSweets28 bet 8.16 million and mighty28 raised all-in, prompting a fold from MrSweets28. Mighty28 was back up to 153.4 million, while MrSweets28 fell to 39.9 million.

MrSweets28 made a bit of a run, winning five hands in a row to move up to 65.5 million, but was slapped back down when mighty28 won the next eight pots, leaving MrSweets28 on 27 million. Then, with the blinds up to 1,000,000/2,000,000, mighty28 open-shoved on the button and MrSweets28 called all-in from the big blind.

mighty28 A♥9♠
MrSweets28 Q♦T♦

Mighty28 paired his nine when the flop came down 9♣7♦4♥, but the T♥ spiked on the turn to give MrSweets28 the lead with a pair of tens. But just as the poker gods gave, they took it all away, sending the 9♥ on the river. Mighty28 made trip nines and locked up his first WCOOP title, leaving MrSweets28 a runner-up once more.

Congratulations to Denmark's mighty28 on joining the ranks of WCOOP champions! He banked $264,885.15 for the win, while Phil "MrSweets28" Galfond earned $183,317.23 for second place.

hands_big_pot_watch.jpg

WCOOP-77 ($215 NL Hold'em [8-Max, Sunday Warm-Up SE]) results
Total entries: 9,666 (6,200 entries, 3,466 re-entries)
Prize pool: $1,933,200.00
Places paid: 1,191

1. mighty28 (Denmark) $264,885.15
2. Phil "MrSweets28" Galfond (Canada) $183,317.23
3. Hitvil (Belarus) $126,870.11
4. Patrick "pads1161" Leonard (Hungary) $87,804.20
5. paleta25 (United Kingdom) $60,767.43
6. RescueGrp (Denmark) $42,055.79
7. SwalzB (Germany) $29,105.87
8. vick23789 (Canada) $20,143.55

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Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in WCOOP