No-limit holdem poker tournaments always draw a crowd, especially at the 2010 World Series of Poker. But add the shootout format to an event, and many players feel that it gives them a particular edge, as single-table sit n goes are a specialty of many of them. With a shootout tournament such as this, one only has to win one table to make the money and win a second table to make the final day, and that sounds relatively easy. But if those tables are made up of some of the best holdem players in the world, the task takes on a new dimension.
Event 39 brought a total of 1,397 players to the tables, three shy of the number of 1,400 originally reported. The updated prize pool was $1,885,950, but what didn’t change was that 140 players would be paid from that sum and $382,725 was reserved for the champion. Day 1 did play out its tables and ended with 140 players moving into Day 2 and into the money. Day 2 allowed all of those players to compete again, and the 14 table winners then moved to Day 3.
The final day of play found the following players in the running to make the final table and possibly become a WSOP champion:
Those players convened in the Amazon Room of the Rio on Wednesday, June 23, and all started with 450K in chips. Those eliminated after a bit of play included:
14th place: Heinz Kamutzki ($6,940)
13th place: J.C. Tran ($8,638)
12th place: Johnny Kitchens ($10,844)
It was soon after that a big hand went down to not only eliminate the next player but take out two and set the final table all at one time. It happened when Annette Obrestad moved all-in for her last 310K from the small blind with , and Michael Pesek came over the top with an all-in reraise for his last 460K from the big blind with . Original raiser Derric Haynie called them both with . The board ran out and offered no help for the all-in players. Obrestad then took $13,654 for 11th place and Pesek grabbed $17,294 for tenth.
The final table was then set, though chip counts weren’t given until a few hands into the action when the players went on their dinner break:
|Seat 1: ||Reagan Leman ||750,000 |
|Seat 2: ||Jeffrey King ||580,000 |
|Seat 3: ||Paul Varano ||598,000 |
|Seat 4: ||Derric Haynie ||1,378,000 |
|Seat 5: ||Michael Cooper ||298,000 |
|Seat 6: ||Dustin Dirksen ||832,000 |
|Seat 7: ||Justin Scott ||149,000 |
|Seat 8: ||Brett Shaffer ||789,000 |
|Seat 9: ||Steven Kelly ||926,000 |
Scott couldn’t get over his short stack and finally pushed all-in with in the hopes of a double-up. Cooper called with , and the race was a short one as the flop came to give Cooper the jacks. The on the turn and on the river ended it completely, and Justin Scott was gone quickly from the table, taking with him $22,575 for the ninth place finish.
Dirksen then experienced his own troubles, as he was whittled down to a 275K stack, though he was able to double through Leman to stay in the game.
Cooper was then the next to move. His 343K went all-in preflop with , and Dirksen reraised to isolate, which worked, and he showed . Though Cooper was in the lead to start, the flop changed that by giving Dirksen the pair of tens. The on the turn changed nothing, but the on the river only improved Dirksen’s hand to a flush. Michael Cooper exited in eighth place with $30,119.
Seven-handed action found Shaffer whittled down to a short stack but doubling through Varano to stay alive. Meanwhile, King doubled through Kelly to jump into the chip lead over Haynie.
Varano never recovered from the Shaffer double-up, and his last 260K went all-in preflop with . That was a respectable hand until Kelly called from the big blind with . The board of was too little, too late for the short stack. Paul Varano was forced out in seventh place with $40,887.
Shaffer got involved with King to see a flop of . Shaffer made a bet, but King raised, and Shaffer called all-in for the remainder of his chips holding for the nut flush draw. King showed for the lesser flush draw and the straight draw. The on the turn changed nothing, but the on the river gave King the pair. Brett Shaffer was eliminated in sixth place with $56,446.
Leman then decided to risk his stack of nearly 600K with from the button, and King called from the small blind with . The flop of gave King the pair of queens to solidify his lead, and the turn and river cards let it be. Reagan Leman departed in fifth place with $78,361.
Four-handed play started with King holding a dominating lead with more than 3 million chips.
Dirksen lost some momentum and finally pushed his last 700K all-in with . Haynie called with , which was behind only until the flop gave Haynie the two pair. The on the turn and on the river ended the tournament for Dustin Dirksen, who walked away with $112,214 for the fourth place finish.
The final three players exchanged chips for some time, and it was Haynie who suffered the most. He was pushed to the short stack and proceeded to push all-in several times with no calls.
Finally, though, Haynie pushed his last 1 million chips all-in with , and Kelly made the call with . The race was on, but the board came and didn’t change the outcome. Derric Haynie was gone in third place with $161,117.
Heads-up action began with the following chip counts:
|Steven Kelly ||4,600,000 |
|Jeffrey King ||1,700,000 |
Kelly pushed his opponent around with the big stack, though King was able to make small strides by becoming more aggressive. Ultimately, though, King did make the all-in move holding , and Kelly called with and the lead. The flop of gave Kelly a pair but King the straight draw, and the on the turn changed nothing. The on the river ended the tournament, and Jeffrey King finished it in second place with $236,819.
Steven Kelly won Event 39, for which he was awarded $381,922 to go along with the WSOP gold bracelet.