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Day 1 completed

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12

$1 Million Cash Game
Day 1 completed

Strike the Set -- We're Out of Here

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12
Players are racking up their chips; the game is over. Tom Dwan did an excellent job of digging himself out of what started out as a $550,000 hole from his heads-up match against Patrik Antonius. I don't know if he made it all the way back, but he certainly made progress once Phil Laak, Andrew Robl, Jamie Pickering, Chris Ferguson and Niki Jedlicka joined the game.

Ferguson didn't have much impact on the ring game. Laak was the big loser after being stacked by Niki Jedlicka for $200,000 and then losing another $75,000 to Dwan on the last hand of the night. Robl gets the "Runs Better than God" award for beating Antonius (see what I did there?) four times on the same PLO board despite being a two-to-one underdog after the flop. Pickering looked nervous at the start of play, but his hands held up when he needed them to hold up. He finished ahead for the night by at least $100,000.

That about does it from the River Room. Thanks so much for following the coverage. Covering a high-stakes cash game was a first for me. I hope you found the reporting interesting and entertaining. I certainly enjoyed being here.

There's one more day of the 2009 Aussie Millions. We'll be bringing coverage tomorrow of the 2-Card Manila championship, but that really is my day off so I have no intention of being anywhere near the Crown Poker Room. Later in the week the action shifts to Manila for the Asian Poker Tour. I'll see you there.

Have a great night!

The Final Hand of the Night

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12

As the cards were going out, the producer came onto the stage and announced that this would be the last hand. Armed with that knowledge, the table folded to Tom Dwan on the button. He limped in, Jamie Pickering completed the small blind and Phil Laak checked the big blind.

Action checked to Dwan on a flop of {K-Diamonds} {Q-Diamonds} {3-Spades}. He bet $3,400 and was called only by Laak. A third diamond came on the turn, the {4-Diamonds}. Laak check-called another $8,800.

The river fell a seeming blank, the {2-Hearts}. For the third time, Laak checked to Dwan. With $28,800 in the pot, Dwan put out a massive overbet of $62,200. Laak thought, and thought, and thought some more. After about two minutes, he said, "Alright, kid," and shipped in the chips necessary for a call. Dwan turned over {6-Diamonds} {8-Diamonds} and collected the pot.

I guess that $200,000 loan that Laak took from the Bank of durrrr earlier in the evening is going to be outstanding a while longer.

Sick, Sick, Sick

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12

PLO is a game for sick, degenerate action-junkie gamblers. So it's no surprise that most of the big pots have come in this game (apart from Phil Laak stacking off preflop with ace-king). Add one more to the tally.

Action folded to Patrik Antonius on the button. He raised the pot to $3,500. Andrew Robl was in the big blind and reraised to $12,000, clearing out Tom Dwan. Antonius called to a flop of {4-Diamonds} {A-Diamonds} {7-Spades}, and that's where things got out of control.

Robl was first to act. He bet two-thirds of the pot, $16,000. Antonius took about a minute to raise the pot to $72,000. Robl had a tough decision, as he was only playing $103,000 behind. He eventually shipped it in and Antonius called.

"How many times?" Robl asked. They were going to run it three times before someone else at the table suggested four would be better. They agreed to run it four times and then opened their hands.

Antonius: {5-Diamonds} {6-Diamonds} {8-Diamonds} {9-Hearts}
Robl: {A-Spades} {Q-Spades} {Q-Diamonds} {J-Clubs}

Antonius turned over a monster draw and had the EV edge in the hand. The first turn and river came out {K-Hearts} {2-Hearts}; Antonius didn't fill. One-quarter of the pot was secure for Robl.

The second turn and river were the {J-Diamonds} and {A-Clubs}. Antonius turned his flush draw, but Robl runner-runnered a full house. Another quarter of the pot belonged to Robl.

The third board ran out {10-Hearts} {K-Spades}. Amazingly, Antonius missed again. Three-quarters of the pot was Robl's.

The fourth and final board came {3-Spades} and {10-Spades}. Antonius made his straight but Robl caught running spades for the but flush. He won for the fourth time in a row and was shipped the whole pot.

"How do you do it?" Phil Laak asked Robl. I'd like to know too!


Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12

Phil Laak is holding forth on the virtues and dangers of "danglers". The discussion was prompted by Tom Dwan revealing a hand that contained a dangler in it. I have to admit that at this point I'm starting to tune Laak out, so I didn't really listen to what he had to say. I'm guessing it was the puerility you might expect from a conversation about "danglers". And from Laak.

That's probably unfair of me to say, given my own propensity for such jokes (ask any of the PokerNews crew), but I call things as I see them.

Not Much Value for Antonius

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12

Three players limped into the pot in front of Patrik Antonius' big blind. He declined his option, taking us to a flop that came down {Q-Hearts} {9-Diamonds} {10-Clubs}. Everyone checked. Antonius led out for $3,000 on the {5-Diamonds} turn and got one caller -- Jamie Pickering on the button.

The river was the {4-Spades}. Antonius bet another $6,000. Pickering's chest heaved as he thought about what to do. He furrowed his brow a few times before throwing in the chips necessary for a call. Antonius showed {A-Clubs} {J-Hearts} {8-Spades} {5-Clubs}. He flopped the second nuts. Pickering mucked.

Half Hour to Go!

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12
There's a half hour left in play. At the last break the producer said she was hoping to get at least one decent hand with Chris Ferguson. His reputation in cash games is pretty tight, though, so that may be tough given the limited time frame.

We just had a misdeal. The game was still hold'em, but the dealer started to deal each player a third card, thinking it had switched to PLO. His mistake was caught after a few cards were already out.

Small Pots

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12
We've had a couple of pots go to a showdown in the last ten minutes, without much betting. Pickering took another $30,000 off of Dwan on a board of {4-Hearts} {9-Spades} {5-Clubs} {q-Spades} {q-Diamonds}. He had position and bet the flop; Dwan called. They both checked the turn and river. Pickering showed {3-Spades} {3-Clubs}, drawing a silent "Wow," from Dwan as he mucked his hand.

We're Back

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12
Play has resumed. Dwan crushed in the first hand of Chinese; Antonius and Jedlicka played the second "criss cross" with each taking two hands. I didn't pay attention to how it turned out because Laak, Dwan and Robl started playing some sort of over/under game. They asked Ferguson to fix in his head the number of kangaroos that he thought were killed by vehicles in Australia in the last 24 hours. Laak and Dwan said Ferguson would say a number "over four"; Robl went "under eight" and the action was booked.

"Four," Ferguson revealed as the number he had come up with. The money went to Robl.

Dwan then mentioned that he had been playing this game yesterday with a few other people, one of whom came up with the line for "total number of women the average 30-year-old U.S. male has slept with during his lifetime".

"It's an interesting question," said Dwan, "because you have to take into account all different types of people." He cited "really religious" types as people who would skew the average downwards.

Programming Note

Posted 2009-01-26 GMT+12
The crew's on a ten-minute break to stretch their legs. While the cameras are off and a few players are walking from the table, the others are playing Chinese.

After the break, we will play until 1am local time. That's one more hour.
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