Cash Review: The Biggest Online Pots Ever x 4
Monday, 27 October 2008
Matt Perry brings us details of the day online poker saw the record pot won smashed four times in one epic session.
CardRunners had the right idea calling their own high-stakes cash review supplement “Count the Zeroes.” As always, the likes of Phil Ivey and Galfond battled it out in the nosebleed games; each huge pot going back and forth across the table more than what an average family earns in a year. It’s all in a day’s work for these people, though – take a week in the life of Patrik Antonius and the biggest pot in the history of online poker.
I don’t know if it’s misplaced jealousy or just flat-out resentment for the mind-boggling richness of these guys, but it always makes me feel a little better to see one of them take a huge beat. David Benyamine was playing three-handed with the aforementioned Ivey and a half-stacker, OnceUponAStar. Getting it all-in before the flop with cowboys is pretty advisable, and 3-handed for 50BBs it’s a no-brainer. This is because, like Benyamine was, your opponent could flip 44. When the flop features a dirty rag 4, however, it becomes a -$100k investment. Just to add insult to injury, OnceUponAStar instantly sat out and left the table once the rake was collected and the pot shipped.
He’ll be a little comforted by the fact that not even 24 hours later he took a pot worth almost five times that from Patrik Antonius. Again, they were playing three-handed; again, Phil Ivey was at the table and of course the game was, again, $500/$1,000 No-Limit, all of course 200BB deep. In case you’re not quite as good at maths as those three, that’s $600k between three people on one table.
Phil Ivey shockingly folded his button and Patrik opened to $4,000 from the small blind with KJo. Benyamine called and then called a c-bet on a T62 flop. On a 7 turn, completing the rainbow, Patrik checked. Benyamine bet $16,000 and after going into his time bank called a check-raise to $30,000 more. The river was a second T and Antonius shoved $150k into the $112k pot. Benyamine insta-called and 98 for the nut straight beat King-high with ease. Don’t feel bad for Patrik, though, as five minutes later he won a $341k pot from (you guessed it) David Benyamine after they got it all in on a 2T5 rainbow flop with AT for David and KK for Patrik. David’s five-outer didn’t hit. Benyamine gave up later after losing the remainder of his stack to the Finn.
They got it all in on a JT8 rainbow flop in a 3-bet pot with Benyamine holding T9 for mid pair and an open-ended straight draw; however this was crushed six ways from Sunday by Antonius’s KQo for the better straight draw and two overcards, although only the K could give him the winning hand. The Ace on the river sealed the deal, shipping a $438,964 pot to the nuts.
The former tennis player and part-time Brad Pitt lookalike is the focus of this week’s special, since he’s been going so insane on Full Tilt Poker. The day after Antonius pounded David Benyamine, he and Tom Dwan began an epic 4-tabling session, playing each other heads-up at $300/$600 HA (alternate rounds of Pot-Limit Hold ‘em and Omaha; they couldn’t call it HO because of copyright issues with Santa Claus and New York ghettos).
After a shaky start, Durrr’s two pair got paid off in $60,000 pot when Antonius made a somewhat tilty call holding only top pair. Fortune favours the tilty, though – the largest pot of their night at that point was a $130k one that went the way of Antonius. Betting and raising every street of a J63J8 board, durrr shoved his trip jacks only to be called by Antonius’s monster – a flopped two pair with the nut flush draw, the latter of which had hit on the river. Within a few hands durrr had won it back and then some with a $135,391 pot when he managed to flop a set against top pair.
One final note on these high stakes games, especially heads-up – there are swings. Not even sixty seconds after the hand that saw durrr rake in $135,391; Patrik and Tom bet it all on the flop in a 4-bet pot. Durrr had top pair, top kicker and the nut flush draw; Patrik had top two pair and an open-ended straight draw. The river was one of those cards that make both players think they’ve won, but the Jc left Dwan $63,700 lighter.
Now we come to the part that you skipped all of the above for – the biggest pot in the history of online poker. Four times. Tom Dwan has had, I think it’s safe to say, a pretty epic night. He won the largest pot ever, taking $617,968 after a long session playing heads-up $500/$1,000NL with Lars Luzack. His A9 had turned top two pair, but with a 972A5 board and a 300BB shove it had become a bluffcatcher. Luzack had 64o and durrr caught the bluff.
A little while later, karma came a-callin’ and durrr lost the largest pot in the history of online poker to John Juanda after getting it all-in pre-flop with AA and KK respectively. Juanda’s three-outer came brutally on the river and the WSOPE champion won a $678k pot.
Phil Ivey, having seen all this, decided that he rather fancied the title of ‘Winner: Online Poker’s Largest Pot’ so he went off and won it. Not only does John Juanda now hold the record for world’s shortest record-holding, but he lost the pot in question – Ivey flopped a set of tens after some heavy pre-flop action and check-raised all in. Juanda called off with K8ss for the second-nut flush draw and didn’t hit.
Closing off a frankly insane 24 hours, Urindanger took Ivey’s mantle and the largest ever online pot. Urindanger raised from middle position to $3,000 and Guy LaLiberte called. Durrr quickly squeezed to $16,300 and it folded back to Urindanger, who 4-bet to $45,000. Durrr called, leaving stacks of around $300,000 behind. The flop came 594 with two hearts and Urindanger bet out. Durrr raised and Urindanger shoved, receiving an insta-call. Once again, durrr was in a AA v KK situation, but this time he was the unfortunate underdog. The turn and river blanked out and shipped a $723,938 pot – the largest ever.