Monday, November 10, 2008

Spoilers! (the 2008 WSOP Main Event final table)

Spoilers!I listened for a good while after the dinner break last night, hearing Darus Suharto’s elimination in sixth place and Scott Montgomery go out in fifth.

That Montgomery elimination was a killer, although he’d put himself in a bad way having shoved with Ad9d five hands earlier only to get called by Ivan Demidov’s pocket kings. That tumbled Montgomery back down to 7 million or so.

Even so, Montgomery’s elimination hand was a bit more than brutal. He’d pushed with Ad3d and was called by Peter Eastgate who had pocket sixes. An ace flopped, another turned, but a six popped out on the river. And that after Dennis Phillips had said he’d folded the other six!

Of course, earlier in the day Montgomery had delivered a similar heartbreaker to Craig Marquis to eliminate Marquis in ninth, catching an improbable runner-runner straight to overtake Marquis’ flopped set of sevens. Talk about spoilers!

Scanning through the hands played after I fell asleep, I see a couple of interesting ones but nothing nearly as intriguing as the one from early in the evening -- Hand No. 18 -- when Phillips dropped 12.5 million to Demidov (discussed a bit here).

After Ylon Schwartz went out in fourth (did anyone check to see if he subsequently leaped off the Rio roof?), I’m seeing there was another much smaller confrontation between Phillips and Demidov in which Phillips again had to fold the turn (Hand No. 164). Then, in Hand No. 169, it looks like Phillips made an unfornately-timed push after Eastgate had flopped a set of threes, knocking Phillips out in third place.

Was glad to see Phillips turn it back around yesterday and make the deep run. Chances are good (I think) that while he lost a lot more on that Hand No. 18 than he should have, he probably did fold the second-best hand. But we’ll see on Tuesday!

Meanwhile, we’ve got the Russian and the Dane heads-up tonight. Have to say, I’m not too surprised at any of the finishes, nor at who we have left standing.

There will be a number of hands worth seeing on Tuesday night, even knowing the result ahead of time. With only two hours of programming (which really only adds up to 90 minutes or so), they’ll only be able to show a couple dozen hands, although I think they won’t have a hard time selecting twenty or so from the 169 played yesterday.

However, they may have a much harder time selecting hands from tonight’s battle between Eastgate and Demidov. That’s because ESPN will probably only leave themselves space to show a couple of hands, but heads up could go on much, much longer than that.

Right now, Eastgate has the chip advantage with 79.5 million to Demidov’s 57.7 million. Looks like they are well into Level 37, with blinds of 300,000/600,000 and 75,000 antes. That’s over a million in the middle preflop for every hand, which seems like a lot. But let’s compare the situation to what they had over in London at the WSOPE a month ago.

When heads up began there, John Juanda had 4.42 million and Stanislav Alekhin 2.85 million. The blinds were 20,000/40,000 with 5,000 antes. Even though Harrington’s “M” doesn’t mean as much in heads up, let’s use it as a way of estimating the relative sizes of the chip stacks. In London, Juanda had an M of about 63 when heads up began, while Alekhin’s M was just under 41. They were playing two-hour levels there just like they are at the WSOP Main Event. And Juanda and Alekhin went on for 242 more hands -- about seven more hours.

How do the stacks of Eastgate and Demidov compare, M-wise? Looks like Eastgate’s M is just under 76, while Demidov’s is right around 55 -- i.e., higher than what they had in London. And while anything can happen in heads-up play -- they could get it all in at any moment -- both of these guys strike me as tough competitors who will be more than willing to take their time.

All of which means I surely won’t be following the action tonight, as it will largely take place while I’m counting sheep. First hand is scheduled for 10 p.m. Vegas time (1 a.m. over here on the other coast), meaning that if they follow form there at the Rio, it will probably go off an hour later.

Hell, they may still be playing when I wake up tomorrow morning. And when I do, I will surely head over to PokerNews for their live reports.

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Blogger $mokkee said...

btw, Eastgate has the chip lead going into HU.

11/10/2008 2:31 PM  
Blogger Short-Stacked Shamus said...

Ack, thanks $smokee. I had gotten the chip counts from the PokerNews blog -- not the chip counts page -- where they have it reversed. I edited my post.

11/10/2008 3:20 PM  

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