2008 PCA: The Incredible Shrinking ElkY

Most people in the poker world don't pay you much mind if you bring up the name Bertrand Grospellier. It's a nice enough name and all, but it doesn't slap poker folks in the face like, say, the name ElkY.

Long-revered in the pro gaming world, ElkY made the move to poker a few years back. Since then, he's been the the first Supernova and first Supernova Elite at PokerStars. If you're at all familiar with how much time and dedication it takes to make it to Supernova Elite, you know it requires one heckuva lot of sitting hours. Over time, the days and nights ElkY spent in front of the computer earned ElkY more than a million VIP Player Points and more than a few pounds on the scale.

When ElkY arrived at the PCA, though, it was easy to miss him. Once a little plump, ElkY decided it was probably time to lose some weight. The problem was, he didn't have the proper motivation. So, like any good player, ElkY found some.

Now, ElkY has some serious cash down on a weight loss bet. It appears, at the moment, he is wininng.


Today, ElKY is looking to find some traction in the contest of the week. We'll have to wait and see if he can win as many chips as pounds he's lost.

In other Team PokerStars Pro news, Luca Pagano has suffered a suckout for his last time in the 2008 PCA main event. Our spies tell us Pagano was playing at the 100/200 level and made it 1,400 to play from late position. He got six callers. The ten-high board matched well with Pagano's pair of tens. Everyone checked to Pagano who made it 4,000 to play. He got one caller who held J8. By the turn, his opponent had a double gutshot and flush draw. Pagano's opponent pushed all-in and Pagano called. The river gave the J8 a straight and put Pagano out to the beach.


With 20 members of Team PokerStars Pro in the field, there ws bound to be a few confrontations between the team members. Today, Dario Minieri and Tuan Lam have been mixing it up and putting to rest any rumors about team spirit. Just a bit ago, Lam flopped the nut straight from the big blind and took more than a few chips from the young Italian.


And the very latest from the floor is that Dario is finito. And it was Tuan who took him out. After folding four hands in a row -- itself something of a record -- Dario re-raised all-in from the button, for about 9,000, after the cut-off had made a regulation three-times the big blind bet.

This seemed entirely regulation; Dario re-raising is kind of the default move. But Tuan Lam was in the big blind and didn't take much time to push all-in over the top. He had about 14,000 at the time. That, of course, gave the cut-off a decision, and he may have read something into the way that Dario stood up, put both straps of his knapsack over his shoulders, and actually walked out of the tournament room.

"That's a great play if he has aces," noted someone else at the table.

Priced in, the cut-off player called and they were three-way, all-in pre-flop. By this point, Dario was back and turned over his A-4 diamonds. "I'm hoping both of you have pairs," he said.

Unfortunately not. The cut-off had A-Q spades; Tuan had 10-10; Dario dead to some diamonds or a miracle. Neither came. They ran it all the way and Lam's pocket pair held up.

Dario departed, Tuan tripled. One gone, one up for Team PokerStars Pro.