WSOP Main Event Day 7: Jorgensen on the slide as pressure mounts on final 40

wsop2010_thn.jpgThere is no such thing as a guarantee in poker. When there's no limit - either to betting or to fear - a major confrontation is never too far away. Even the soundest horses can pull up lame; the safest house can be blown away.

Let's get this straight right now: Theo Jorgensen is not out of this tournament. But the man many people were considering to be the only real lock for the final table is now one of the short stacks. It all went down on the last hand before dinner.

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Theo Jorgensen, down from his chip-leader perch

Brandon Steven started it off with a raise to 225,000, which attracted both Jorgensen and Cuong Nguyen along from the blinds. The flop didn't immediately seem as though it would be worth 19 million chips, but it soon was. It came K♣5♥9♣.

Jorgensen and Nguyen both checked, Steven bet 525,000. Jorgensen called, but Nguyen raised to 1.5 million. Steven had seen enough and let it go, but this was far from over. Jorgensen raised to 4 million and Nguyen shoved for more than 7.5 million. Jorgensen called.

Nguyen was ahead, but he had his tournament life dangling from a K♥J♣. Jorgensen, on the other hand, was drawing for an almighty chip lead. He had A♣3♣.

The turn and river did not help either of them especially. The [10d] and 3♦ were blanks, meaning Nguyen scooped more chips than any one of us will probably ever hold in his life. Nguyen is our chip leader with close to 20 million.

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DOUBLE ELIMINATION OF THE HOUR

So, Jorgensen is looking less happy these days, but if he thought he had problems at least he took no part in a hand that would reduce the attendance at his table by two.

Jakob Toestesen started it, moving all-in for a little more than two million. The action reached Jonathan Driscoll who called for a little less. Brandon Steven was next and leapt from his chair. He took a step back, clapped as he exhaled and said "I call," as well.

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Jonathan Driscoll, left, and Brandon Steven, right

The dealer yelled that he had an all-in and two callers and all hell broke loose as the players turned over their cards.

A♦K♦ for Steven.
A♣J♦ for Toestesen.
K♣K♠ for Driscoll.

Cameras converged on the table as their microphone pike men hung booms over the players' heads. After a considerable pause the dealer dealt the flop, one that couldn't have been nicer to Steven is it had come with flowers and the promise of a night in the Pai Gow pit: 9♦4♦Q♦

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Bedlam on the Steven/Wissing/Driscoll table

Steven had flopped the flush and was happy about it. The noise was coming from the rail, the ritual of calling for cards. The turn came Q♥. Someone somewhere said: "He celebrated too early," but this was irrelevant on the 5♠ river.

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Brandon Steven celebrates his victory

Steven stacked up his chips for the others to pay him off. Driscoll looked glum but hopeful he was not quite covered, while Toestesen knew that his day was done and stared into space. "Was that a sick flop or what?" said Steven. I'm not sure Toestesen or Driscoll heard.

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An exhausted Brandon Steven

Steven's bill was for 2,695,000 which eventually neither of the other two could pay. "He got the both of them," said someone else from somewhere else, as the two vanquished players departed.

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Brandon Steven counts his chips

A new dealer arrived. The old one clapped his hands and stood up to leave. His work was done.

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MORE THREE WAY ACTION OF THE HOUR

There was also a three-way all in on the featured table too, but this time only one player took the walk. Damien Luis had pocket fours and about a million in chips, Hasan Habib had A♣Q♥ and about 400,000; William Thorson had more than 11 million but only A♥Q♣.

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William Thorson makes his point

Still the ace on the flop gave both Thorson and Habib top pair and also won the side pot for Thorson. Habib doubled up courtesy of his kicker, which Luis went broke.

Thorson hasn't had it all his own way since dinner and was also flushed by Matt Affleck in a pot of around two million. He still has plenty though.

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A slightly downcast William Thorson

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MICHAEL SKENDER SHOW OF THE HOUR

It looked like disaster for German Supernova Elite Michael Skender who got it all-in with T♥T♦ against John Dolan's A♣Q♣. The board ran out A♦2♥8♣3♣Q♦ and Skender's stack was demolished.

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Is the game up for Michael Skender?

When the stacks were counted down, Skender came to life. He had 780,000 left. "Woooo! I'm still in the tournament!" Skender exclaimed. "Let's go! I'm coming back."

And so, on his next big blind, he called all-in with 7♠9♥. He was terribly behind K♥T♠. Skender stood, then decided that was a bad idea. "Let's sit down," he said. "I'm not going anywhere."

And so he was not. The board ran out a wheel and it was good for a chop. "I'm not going home!" Skender told the crowd.

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Michael Skender retakes his seat

And so he was not. Just a few minutes later, Skender got it all in with K♠K♥ against A♣T♥. Now shoeless and resting comfortably in his seat, Skender announced, "I'll stay here."

And so he did, flopping a set and watching it hold.

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Michael Skender doubles up

If anyone thought they were going to get bored, they only had to wait until the next time Skender was in the big blind. Gianni Dorenzo raised from the small blind to 275,000 and Skender barely blinked before pushing all in for 1.4 million. Dorenzo tanked for several minutes before folding. Skender immediately stood and held T♣6♣ above his head.

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Michael Skender on the up again

This Skender kid may be going places.

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SUCCESSFUL INVOCATION OF THE POKERSTARS BLOG ONE TIME CHIP OF THE HOUR

As the creators of the PokerStars Blog One Time Chip, we'd like to congratulate another successful customer, Mr. Ben Statz, who just vocalized his desire. "Dealer, I'd like to use my One Time now." The dealer noted the use of the Chip and allowed Statz jacks to hold up against Gabe Coster's big slick.

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QUALIFIER ELIMINATION OF THE HOUR

Nicolas Babel, the man who rose to these heights after an early round flopped quads versus aces full has finally been eliminated. His final hand T♥T♦ was no match for K♣K♦.

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SLOVAK ELIMINATION OF THE HOUR

Dag Palovic is also out. He couldn't recover from running queens into kings.

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WHAT'S THAT NOISE OF THE HOUR

"Wheeeeeeeeeee..Whhhhhhheeeeeeee....Wheeeeeeeeee...." --member of the press snoring in the third row of the media center.

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WARNING OF THE HOUR

"Don't touch the cameraman." --ESPN cameraman to a player still in the Main Event.

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CHOPS OF THE HOUR

1. PokerStars Blogger Howard Swains' dinner (pork x 2 with mango salsa)
2. The amount each player would take if they chopped right now: $1,060,000

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APPROPRIATE CORRIDOR SONG OF THE HOUR

Cry Baby by Janis Joplin.

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STATISTIC OF THE HOUR

Gross spend by PokerStars Blog team on newly-discovered "Fireball" slot machine during dinner break: $80
Gross return from newly-discovered "Fireball" slot machine: 35 cents
Net spend on newly-discovered "Fireball" slot machine by PokerStars Blog team during dinner break: $79.65

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CONSPICUOUS LACK OF ENDORSEMENT OF THE HOUR

PokerStars Blog has not yet endorsed the newly-discovered "Fireball" slot machine as the Official Slot Machine of PokerStars Blog.

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VIDEO OF THE HOUR

A bunch of Team PokerStars Pros were asked whether they thought a professional player could win the World Series Main Event. Funnily enough, they seemed to think so. (This video was filmed at the PokerStars party at the end of day two.)