Monday, July 28, 2014

Travel Report: LAPT7 Panama, Day 4 -- Manos: The Hands of Fate

The final day at the Latin American Poker Tour Panama Main Event was kind of a strange one. The final table zipped by quickly, finishing in less than five hours. That wasn’t so odd, as these LAPT final tables do tend to move along quickly. Also, in this case they’d gotten a little deeper in the structure than usually happens thanks to a very long final table bubble (about three hours), so there were tons of short stacks at the start.

But after almost a dozen hands passed yesterday, there were six eliminations within the space of about 15 minutes of poker, which was a little bit head-spinning. The all-ins just kept coming, and while there were a couple of small double-ups thrown in there, most ended with knockouts.

The Argentinian Fabian Ortiz who began the day with the chip lead was the one handling most of those bustouts. He actually lost the lead on the day’s first hand after triple-barreling in a blind-vs.-blind confrontation to drop about half his stack. But he got that back quickly, then began motoring through the others in short order.

Heads-up looked like it might end in a single hand, actually, as Guillermo Olvera of Mexico shoved all in on the river and Ortiz had to tank a while before calling. But Olvera had Ortiz beat and they continued on, in fact playing more than two hours more before Ortiz at last came away with the win.

It marked Ortiz’s second LAPT title after winning back in Season 2 in Chile. He became only the second player in the LAPT’s history to win two Main Events, the other being Team PokerStars Pro Nacho Barbero.

Interestingly, the final hand yesterday saw Ortiz winning with K-7-offsuit, managing to outrun Olvera’s A-7 when a king fell on the turn. King-seven was the exact hand with which he won the LAPT2 Chile event as well, suggesting the Mystery Science Theater 3000 reference above. (Photo of Ortiz holding up the hand of fate by Carlos Monti.)

Gotta run as my shuttle to the airport is coming. Still promising that report on the trip to the Panama Canal on Saturday, which I’ll share later this week. It was a fun week, and again it was great to work alongside the LAPT folks, all of whom are excellent at what they do besides being a lot of fun to hang around with.

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