Will someone please just check the damned deal box already?

Flying in the face of massive 50,000/ 100,000 + 2,500 ante blinds and relatively even stacks, only one player at the final table for the August 31st Party Poker 300K ever even checked yes to the golden dealmaking box. To further exacerbate matters, when play became six-handed, the top chip stack had about 1.7 million and the small stack had about 700,000…

Future Party Poker 300K final table players, when blinds are into six figures and there is not a lot of difference between the big stack and the small stacks (10 big blinds) but there is a huge difference between first and sixth place prize money (almost $50,000) YOU REALLY SHOULD AT LEAST CHECK OUT THE DEAL!!!!!

Unless your name is Telefonkiosk and you’re going to surmount a 5.6 million to 1.6 million chip disadvantage Heads up and take home the $60,000 for outright victory. In which case, sure, forego the deal and take home $60,000.

Let’s take a look at the final table players; how they played, how they fared and how much money they made (all dollar values are in USD)

10. javizanetti / $2,850 / 0 hands won / 0 players eliminated

Denmark’s javizanetti entered final table play with approximately 402K in chips to make him the second shortest stack. With blinds beginning at the final table at 20,000 / 40,000 + 1,000 antes, javizanetti had little time to dilly dally. Unfortunately for javi, he chose to push it all-in pre-flop with K7 hoping to steal the blinds but was called by never2lucky holding AK. javizanetti received $2,850 for his tenth place finish.

9. RaalManaus / $4,050 / 0 hands won / 0 players eliminated

Brazilian player RaalManaus came into the final table with about 225K in chips to put him well behind everyone else. Though he never won a hand, RaalManaus did get his money in with 44 against eventual second place finisher Skat579’s AK for a slightly better than 50% chance of doubling up. Only he didn’t double up. RaalManaus received $4,050 for his ninth place finish and represented the first Brazilian player to make the Party Poker 300K final table in more than three months.

8. garavana / $5,250 / 0 hands won / 0 players eliminated

German player garavana amounted to the first of two gigantic implosions at the final table (the second occurred Heads up.) Winning no hands at any table is a tough enough pill to swallow, but not winning any when you enter as the chip leader to a final table with 1.23 million is the poker equivalent of swallowing a baseball. The hand history for hand 7340751308 points to the biggest single reason that garavana left early… an ill-advised bluff. The first mistake garavana made here was getting involved in a pot with one of the other big stacks at the table (LOUPatTABLE) the next mistake was getting trapped on a stone cold bluff against a full house for more than 2 million chips. Then, as if KQ had not already done enough for garavana, he pushed his final 300K in with it only to be promptly dispatched by eventual winner Telefonkiosk’s pocket Aces. Despite his colossal collapse, garavana took home $5,250 for his efforts.

7. fokker44 / $7,950 / 2 hands won / 0 players eliminated.

I had been watching Canadian player fokker44 for a while before the final table began. I always find that players with “funny” screen names make “stupid” decisions which are always good fodder for articles. And while I did see quite a few funky plays (Hand 7340658217 points to a lack of understanding of poker odds on fokker’s part that is truly baffling) I do have to give fokker44 credit. He played OK, took a couple of pots with solid pre-flop aggression and should have continued much further in the tournament if it weren’t for his JJ all-in losing to never2lucky’s KJ (a more than 1 million chip pot too.) In the end, fokker44 took home $7,950.

6. themasterd2 / $10,350 / 4 hands won / 0 players eliminated

Another player from Denmark, themasterd2 entered final table play with a shade over 420K in chips. He played pretty well from seat 1, taking 4 pots with pre-flop all-ins. However, he would be another victim of a gnarly suckout, losing with KK against LOUPatTABLE’s pocket Tens. Despite his lack of final table luck, themasterd2 made $10,350 for a well-played sixth place finish.

5. never2lucky / $13,800 / 8 hands won / 2 players eliminated (javizanetti and fokker44)

never2lucky was yet another player hailing from Denmark (the third at the final table.) He came into the final table with 1.17 million in chips then won 8 hands through an array of pre-flop aggression and well-timed luck (beating Fokker’s JJ with KJ for more than 1 million chips qualifies as some serious luck.) So I’m not totally sure where the screen name is coming from. One of the luckier players at the final table, never2lucky made $13,800 for his fifth place finish.

4.LOUPatTABLE / $16,350 / 17 hands won / 1 player eliminated (themasterd2)

LOUPatTABLE may have been the best player at the final table. The second member of the German contingent, LOUP came into the final table with about 1.16 million in chips and immediately used them to the fullest of their potential in the previously mentioned trap on then chip leader, garavana (Hand 7340751308.) He parlayed that play into fantastic post flop play, taking 4 pots post-flop without a showdown. His biggest mistake however, was the same mistake that every other player made (well , technically every other player except for Telefonkiosk:) an extremely unprofitable aversion to dealmaking. With six players left, LOUP held a slim chip lead with 1.7 million and the blinds skyrocketing to 50,000 / 100,000 + 2,500 antes – yet not one single player had checked yes to dealmaking. Had LOUP somehow engendered a deal at that point, he would’ve been in line for about a $37,000 prize; instead he wound up with a $16,350 prize for a fourth place finish. LOUPatTABLE was eliminated by Skat579 when LOUP’s 87 did not improve against Skat’s A9.

3. zmeyga / $20,700 / 29 hands won / 0 players eliminated

Russian player, zmeyga had a plan for the final table – win the hand pre-flop or forget about the hand.Though he entered the final table with a modest 521K stack, he was able to win the most hands at the final table through a constant barrage of pre-flop aggression. zmeyga also employed a late tournament pre-flop aggression strategy that more players should look into – raising without going all-in. Despite his astounding 29 hands won stat, zmeyga never won one single hand post-flop without a showdown. Aggression, aggression, aggression and if he got called pre-flop, he slowed way down – not a half bad plan when each pot represented almost 2% of the total chips before a single card was dealt. zmeyga was eliminated by Skat579 holding J7 of Spades against Skat’s pocket eights. zmeyga brought home $20,700 for a well-executed final table plan.

2. Skat579 / $33,000 / 20 hands won / 3 players eliminated (RaalManaus, LOUPatTABLE and zmeyga)

HEADS UP: 10 hands won, began with 5.6 million in chips

At least he tried. While I remain flabbergasted at the August 31 Party Poker 300K final table non-deal, Russian player Skat579 did at least try to get one done heading into Heads up play. He asked his greatly outchipped opponent if he would like to look at the numbers for the deal, to which the eventual winner replied, “no.” Up until the Heads up play, Skat had played wonderfully, he eliminated 3 players, he won 5 hands post-flop without a showdown and he took 12 more through pre-flop aggression.

But then came the Heads up ma
tch. It takes a lot to lose a more than 3 to 1 chip advantage and Skat found a lot of ways to lose. He folded a bunch of hands pre-flop (not a good plan with monstrous blinds) and lost a more than 2 million pot when his flopped two pair was beaten by Telefonkiosk’s rivered two pair in hand 7340824978. All told, Skat579 took home $33,000 for his second place finish.

1.Telefonkiosk / $60,000 / 15 hands won / 3 players eliminated (garavana, never2lucky and Skat579)

HEADS UP: 14 hands won, began with 1.6 million in chips

That had to feel good – after biding his time for most of the final table taking a modest 9 pots through pre-flop aggression, Sweden’s new favorite son, Telefonkiosk switched on the after burners Heads up and won the whole thing. Did he have to get lucky to do it? Of course, very few players ever successfully overcome a lot of to win a big tournament. And while hand 7340824978 was certainly a bad beat, Telefonkiosk had possessed top pair going into the river.

And Telefonkiosk was mostly right for turning down the offer of a deal that Skat made (I say mostly because you should always look at the numbers, but those numbers would not have spelled out a favorable deal for Telefonkiosk.) All in all, Telefonkiosk played very solid, tight-aggressive tournament poker and throttled his opponent Heads up. Strong player who deserved his $60,000 first prize.

FINAL TABLE STATISTICS*

95 Hands
28 flops
18 turns
16 rivers
16 showdowns
7,325,000 total chips

*Final Table Stats do not include Heads Up action

We’ll see you next week for the September 7 Party Poker $300,000 Guaranteed Prize Pool Weekly No Limit Texas Hold’em Poker Tournament.

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