Dao Bac (photo courtesy of ImageMasters) hit a three-outer on the river to take down $157,975 for his first WSOP bracelet in the $1.0k SHOE event. Michael Craig made his second Final Table but came up short in 7th.
SHOE rotates through four games: Seven Card Stud, LH, Omaha Hi/Lo, and Stud Eight or Better. It has been a WSOP event off and on through the years and can also be found on PokerStars among online sites.
"It was originally a marketing-driven initiative when the WSOP was played at what was formally Binion's Horseshoe in downtown Las Vegas," said Nolan Dalla. "In fact, a H.O.R.S.E. event routinely preceded the S.H.O.E. tournament, thus making for the duo of events which spelled out ‘Horseshoe.'"
730 players paid the smallest buy-in at the World Series of Poker to try their luck at the four games.
Seventy-two players cashed, including Erik Seidel (66th $1,528), Matt Matros (14th $6,842), and Doug Carli ($7,507). It was Carli's fifth cash in this year's WSOP, and the veteran road warrior shows no slowing down heading into the Main Event.
Eight players made the Final Table as Chip Jett limped in. He lost a big hand late when his A-Qo flopped a queen but ran into Adam Geyer's pocket aces in the LH section. Chip counts at the Final Table:
Adam Geyer (293k)
Dao Bac (266k)
Imre Leibold (250k)
Raymond Davis (235k)
Vladimir Shchemelev (168k)
Michael Craig (161k)
Patrick Poels (53k)
Chip Jett (40k)
Play started in LH with blinds of 4k/8k and 8k/16k bets. Patrick Poels went out first in an unfortunate hand. Short-stacked, the two-time bracelet winner from Phoenix needed to chip up early. He looked down at and three-bet to 24k after Dao Bac made it 16k. Bac called, and the flop came , and they bet until Poels was all-in. He showed his aces, but saw the unexpected from Bac and was out in 8th ($11,957).
Michael Craig has become a poker player, a title that has moved ahead of poker author. His "The Profesor, the Banker, and the Suicide King" brought the Andy Beal vs the top pros out of the Bellagio and onto the page. For the past year, he has played FullTilt tournaments regularly. His play has improved, moving from ABC poker to a more adventurous tournament style.
This was his second Final Table, and he had high hopes for his first bracelet. Vladimir Shchemelev busted him in the Omaha H/L round, and he was out in 7th ($15,943). "I've got one more chance to improve on 7th" he said as he walked away from the Amazon Room.
Shchemelev was next to go. As play moved to Stud Eight or Better with 2k antes and 10k/20k bets, Chip Jett had three 7's to take a monster pot from Dao Bac and bust the Russian in 6th ($20,793). Estonian Imre Leibold quickly followed him to the cashier, as Adam Geyer caught a Broadway straight during Stud to send him out in 5th ($26,572).
With four players remaining, the chip counts were:
Adam Geyer (657k)
Dao Bac (359k)
Chip Jett (340k)
Raymond Davis (120k)
Play moved to LH with 8k/15k blinds and 15k/30k limits. Davis continued to slide with his few chips, and got tag teamed by Jett and Bac. They checked down a board of , and Bac's made a straight and ended the day for Raymond Davis in 4th (left, $34,012).
Play went three-handed, with each player jockeying for position. Chip Jett's engine stalled in three consecutive hands of Stud Eight or Better. With antes of 5k, 5k to complete, and bets of 20k/40k, he lost 160k to Adam Geyer and folded when the last card was dealt down. Jett's had no low and nothing connecting to Geyer's . He folded again on the last street, this time to Bac with to his showing. Geyer finished him off on the next hand, and Chip Jett was out in 3rd ($55,801). It was the first WSOP cash this year for him as he works to jumpstart his WSOP results.
Bac held a 1m to 400k chip lead over Geyer, and they moved to LH with 15k/30k blinds and 30k/60k bets. Geyer got down to the felt but survived to double up to 250k. Geyer raised pre-flop, and Bac called. The flop came , and Bac check-raised Geyer. came on the turn, and again Bac check-raised Geyer. He bet an additional 30k, his last chips, and Bac called with for a gutshot straight draw with his pair of sevens. Geyer couldn't believe it as he showed for a dominant position. Only a six or four would finish Geyer off, and spiked on the river. Adam Geyer was runner-up for $85,691, his best cash ever.
Dao Bac's $157,975 was his best cash since finishing on the TV bubble in 7th at the 2005 WPT Legends of Poker at the Bike. He's one of the grinders you find at poker rooms in LA, one of the toughest proving grounds in all of poker. Now he's one of the few in the room with a WSOP bracelet.