WCOOP 2016: Phil "Grindation" McAllister tops Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk in Event #53 ($10,300 NL Hold'em [8-Max, High-Roller]); Twitch record smashed 

In the end, it was Grindation over #GrindNation. Phil "Grindation" McAllister's tremendous 2016 continued tonight as he claimed his first WCOOP title and $584,415.23, defeating Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk who streamed the 8-Max High Roller event live on his Twitch channel. It was a career-high score for McAllister, who finished third in the 2016 PCA Main Event and won his first WSOP bracelet this summer in the $3,000 NLHE Shootout. Polk, who paused his #GrindNation $10 to $10,000 Twitch bankroll challenge for the WCOOP, earned $455,000 for his runner-up finish and smashed the record for the largest-ever poker score on the streaming platform. The record was most recently held by PokerStars player SolidPenis, who won €250,000 in a €25 Spin 'N Go on PokerStars.fr in July. Prior to that, Polk held the record with his $162k win in the "Kilimanjaro" tournament in the PokerStars Mountain Series.

Phillip_Grindation_McAllister_WCOOP.jpgPhil "Grindation" McAllister

The WCOOP NLHE 8-Max High Roller drew 356 total entries (278 players, 78 re-entries) resulting in a $3,560,000.00 prize pool. 39 players earned a share of it with $656,866.11 set aside for the champion.

Day 1 concluded after 18 levels of play. 56 hopefuls advanced to Day 2 and Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk held the overnight chip lead with 436,297. Cards were in the air for two hours on Day 2 before the money bubble was reached. With the blinds up to 2,400/4,800, both caIcuIer_ and Stevie "stevie444" Chidwick held a little more than 12,000 apiece and were at the same table. The big blind hit Chidwick first, and facing a raise from nailuj90, he called all-in with A♦2♥. Nailuj90 turned over K♠Q♣. Chidwick's ace-high was good on the J♣T♣6♦ flop, he made top pair when the A♣ turned, but nailuj90 rivered a flush with the 7♣ to send Chidwick to the rail on the money bubble.

Last year's WCOOP High Roller Heads-Up champion Mikael "ChaoRen160" Thuritz went out in 34th place, followed by newly minted WSOP bracelet winner David "dpeters17" Peters in 32nd. Other notable cashes included Chun Lei "SamRostan" Zhou (31st), Steve "Mr. Tim Caum" O'Dwyer (28th), Stefan "mindgamer" Jedlicka (27th), Elio "smokrokflock" Fox (26th), Simon "C.Darwin2" Mattsson (22nd), Chance "ChanceCU" Kornuth (19th), Cesar "Ce$ar$pa" Garcia (18th), Andras "probirs" Nemeth (16th), Nick "TheTakeover" Schulman (14th), and Niklas "lena900" Åstedt (11th).

The blinds were up to 15,000/30,000 with nine players remaining when Dietrich "2pacnrw16" Fast open-shoved for 371,583 from the cutoff and Phil "Grindation" McAllister called from the big blind. Fast had run 4♥4♠ right into McAllister's J♥J♣. Both players hit sets on the Q♦J♠4♦ flop, McAllister's three jacks taking out the German on the final table bubble.


Final table chip counts

Seat 1: LLinusLLove (652,866 in chips)
Seat 2: mexican222 (1,027,690 in chips)
Seat 3: ShefanHilaly (495,580 in chips)
Seat 4: Grindation (1,455,973 in chips)
Seat 5: Stammdogg (481,378 in chips)
Seat 6: €urop€an (1,685,017 in chips)
Seat 7: WCG|Rider (763,437 in chips)
Seat 8: Big Huni (558,059 in chips)

On the second hand of the final table, the action folded to WSOP bracelet winner Keven "Stammdogg" Stammen and he moved in for 476,878 with A♣Q♥. €urop€an called from the cutoff with J♦J♥. The jacks held up on the K♦8♦4♣4♦4♠ board and Stammen exited in eighth place, while €urop€an moved up to 2.24 million in chips.

Meanwhile, on Twitch, Polk was already celebrating a milestone. "We did it! We're in seventh place! We're going to beat my finish from two years ago!" he exclaimed.

Four hands later, Chris "Big Huni" Hunichen open-shoved for 625,259 and two-time SCOOP champion Alexandros "mexican222" Kolonias reshoved from the cutoff. Big Huni's 7♥7♣ were racing with A♠K♠ and stayed ahead through the turn, but a king spiked on the river to end his run in seventh place.

On the next deal, the action folded around to €urop€an in the small blind and he opened for a 3x raise to 90,000. WCG|Rider called with T♣7♥ and saw the flop fall J♦8♣7♠. €urop€an checked and WCG|Rider checked behind with bottom pair and a gutshot. The turn brought the 6♣ and €urop€an led out for 134,440. WCG|Rider looked him up and they went to the river, the 3♥. €urop€an fired another 161,874 and WCG|Rider called. Polk's pair of sevens was good enough to catch €urop€an's bluff with Q♣5♦ and Polk moved up to 1.13 million in chips. On the next hand, Polk and €urop€an tangled again when €urop€an opened for 66,300, Polk three-bet to 222,750 and €urop€an shoved for 1,947,971. Polk called, his A♠K♦ up against 7♠7♦ for his tournament life. Polk screamed for a king as the flop came down Q♦3♦2♦. Then he screamed for a diamond and the poker gods complied with the 6♦. The river was the K♠ and Polk moved into the chip lead with 2.3 million.

"Oh my God! We have 2 million chips! We have a pile of chips! Holy sh*t! We are in first place. There are six left. How clutch was this!" said an elated Polk. "We need fifth to get unstuck on WCOOP, third for biggest Twitch score of all time, first for the whole enchilada."

polk_doubles_AKv77.jpgEmojis flood the chat box as Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk doubles up

€urop€an was down but certainly not out and soon doubled through mexican222 when his J♥7♥ rivered two pair against A♥9♥. However, Polk's stint at the top came to an end when ShefanHilaly open-shoved for 259,780 with 6♠6♦ and Grindation reshoved for 1,172,695 right behind him with A♥K♣. Polk looked down at T♦T♥ and called from the big blind.

"Hold!" he demanded as the flop came down J♦9♠5♥, but the turn would not comply as the A♣ landed, pairing up Grindation. The river was the 3♦ and Grindation took the chip lead with 2.65 million, while ShefanHilaly departed in sixth place.

Short-stacked since the final table began, LLinusLLove stayed alive by doubling through Grindation, his Q♣T♦ flopping a queen against A♥6♣. However, a few hands later, the action folded to WCG|Rider in the small blind and he moved all-in for 1.34 million. LLinusLLove called all-in for 372,972, his Q♥8♥ ahead of Polk's J♥T♦. LLinusLLove kept his lead on the 4♦3♦3♥ flop, but Polk hit the T♣ on the turn to wrest it away. The river was the 4♥ and LLinusLLove hit the rail in fifth place as Polk celebrated another milestone.

"Boom! Back to even on the WCOOP!" Polk declared. The $200,000 he'd lost in buy-ins was now a thing of the past, and anything else was gravy.

Mexican222 never got off the short stack and made a stand for his last 407,739 with K♣J♥. Grindation called with A♠9♣ and made aces up on the Q♠9♦2♣5♥A♣ board to end mexican222's run in fourth place. With that, Polk was guaranteed at least $357,491.99 for his efforts and thus reclaimed the record for the largest-ever online poker score broadcast on Twitch. The Twitch brass must have been watching because they immediately sent Polk their congratulations on Twitter.


After a few minutes of three-handed play, Grindation, €urop€an and WCG|Rider agreed to pause the action and discuss a potential deal. Here's how they stacked up when negotiations began:

Grindation 3,574,776
€urop€an 1,856,674
WCG|Rider 1,688,550

From the start, Polk let his opponents know he was looking for slightly more than an ICM chop...and that he'd never made a deal before.

WCG|Rider: im down to make a deal if I get like 1-2% more then icm
€urop€an: doubt I'm giving any up, but we can have a look
Grindation: icm favours the short anyway
WCG|Rider: I have never done a chop ever
WCG|Rider: I just dont want my talents to go unrewarded
€urop€an: it's good to try new things Doug!

Polk was also aware of €urop€an's dealmaking prowess. Last Thursday, when he won Event #35 ($1,575 NLHE Super Tuesday SE), €urop€an managed to negotiate himself a payday a few thousand dollars greater than the published first-place prize.

The ICM formula awarded Grindation $514,400.27, €urop€an $460,714.75 and WCG|Rider $452,629.92. Polk said he'd close the deal if he got $455k and asked his opponents to come up with the remaining $2,400. Although €urop€an was initially reluctant to give up anything, Grindation was more amenable to the request... and a fan of Polk's Twitch channel. Eventually, €urop€an relented.

Grindation: i'm a fan of the grindnation so i'll give half 1.2
€urop€an: ok
€urop€an: I'll give up 1.2

With that, all three parties agreed to the deal and with $71,200 still at stake, cards went back in the air.

It wasn't long before a big pot developed between €urop€an and Grindation. With the blinds up to 24,000/48,000, Grindation opened for 96,000 on the button and €urop€an called from the small blind. €urop€an checked the J♥9♥5♣ flop over to Grindation, who bet 144,000. €urop€an called and they went to the turn, which fell the 5♠. €urop€an checked again, Grindation bet 374,400 and €urop€an called. The river was the 9♣ and €urop€an checked a third time. Grindation moved all-in for 2.81 million and €urop€an called off his remaining 1.19 million with J♠T♣ for jacks and nines. Unfortunately for him, Grindation turned up K♥K♦ for kings and nines and €urop€an went out in third place.

Heads-up chip counts

Seat 4: Phil "Grindation" McAllister (5,302,089 in chips)
Seat 7: Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk (1,817,911 in chips)

Polk began heads-up play at nearly a 3 to 1 chip disadvantage, but lost even more ground on the first hand when he called McAllister's river bet with a pair of aces, only to lose to aces up. Polk was left with a little over a million in chips and holding K♠T♠, checked the flop, bet the turn, and moved in on the river on a Q♠T♣4♥2♠K♣ board. McAllister gave up his hand and Polk moved back up to 1.35 million. Polk gained some steam as he picked off a river bluff from McAllister with a pair of eights on a A♦T♠8♥9♥7♥ board (McAllister had only 3♣4♣), and then turned trip sixes on the next hand to move back up to 1.67 million. Then, with A♥2♦, Polk opened for a 100,320 raise and McAllister called from the big blind. Both players checked the Q♦J♠5♥ flop as well as the 2♥ turn. When the J♦ rivered, McAllister fired out 204,000. Polk called and his jacks and deuces were good for the 623,000 pot, sending his chip count back over the 2 milllion mark.

Moments later, McAllister picked up K♥K♣ and opened for 96,000. Polk called with J♠5♦ and the flop miraculously fell J♥T♣5♠. Polk checked his two pair, McAllister bet 72,240, and Polk raised to 268,732. McAllister three-bet to 549,600, Polk shoved, and McAllister called. Polk jumped out of his chair as the 5♥ turned and gave him a full house and the river fell the meaningless 6♦. Polk doubled to 3.75 million and was suddenly back on top after snapping off McAllister's pocket kings.

Polk had ground his stack up to a healthy 4.18 million when McAllister struck back. He opened for 96,000 on the button and Polk three-bet to 366,775 with A♣K♥. McAllister made it 741,600 to go, Polk shoved and McAllister called with Q♣Q♥. The queens held up on the 6♥4♠2♣T♥T♠ board and McAllister doubled to 5.86 million, leaving Polk on 1.25 million.

"Ohhhhhh... 5.9 million pot we do NOT win with ace-king. Back to the cellar!" Polk groaned.

Polk did manage to double up a few minutes later when his A♣Q♠ held up against A♦T♦. However, three hands later, he found 5♥5♠ and opened for 100,320. McAllister three-bet to 360,000, Polk shoved and McAllister called with Q♣Q♦. Again, the queens held up for McAllister as the board ran out K♦8♠3♥4♦2♣ and he locked up his first WCOOP title.

Congratulations to Phil "Grindation" McAllister on joining the ranks of WCOOP champions! He banked $584,415.23 for his efforts, while runner-up Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk earned $455,000.00--a Twitch record for the largest online poker score ever broadcast on the platform... and one that could stand for quite a while.

WCOOP-53 ($10,300 NL Hold'em [8-Max, High-Roller]) results
Total entries: 356 (278 entries, 78 re-entries)
Prize pool: $3,560,000.00
Places paid: 39

1. Phillip "Grindation" McAllister (Mexico) $584,415.23*
2. Doug "WCG|Rider" Polk (Australia) $455,000.00*
3. €urop€an (Finland) $459,529.71*
4. Alexandros "mexican222" Kolonias (United Kingdom) $263,731.20
5. LLinusLLove (Switzerland) $194,561.47
6. ShefanHilaly (United Kingdom) $143,532.79
7. Chris "Big Huni" Hunichen (Costa Rica) $105,887.92
8. Keven "Stammdogg" Stammen (Canada) $78,116.36

*denotes a three-way deal

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Kristin Bihr
@PokerStars in WCOOP