|4/29 to 4/30/98
|TEXAS HOLD'EM (Pot Limit) $2,000
|TOTAL PRIZE MONEY - $458,000
|PRIZE MONEY TO DATE - $4,399,000
|ENTRIES IN THIS EVENT - 229
|TOTAL ENTRIES TO DATE - 2,359
The Final Table
How they finished
Live From the 'Shoe
SO TIGHT THEY SQUEAKED
In what may have been the softest final table in World Series history, the first raiser was god. This table probably set a record for the least re-raises. They may have set a record that will never be broken.
They were giving each other so much respect you'd think they were in a home game at Don Cordeleone's house.
The only thing these players knew about position was that it was about some missionary.
LIMPING TOWARD GOMORRAH
"I had the dream hand in that situation." Mike Sexton had A A and one caller, in his all-in hand. Unfortunately for Mike, that one caller was Luis Santoni. Luis, famous for putting everybody on A K instead of a pair, called with 6's.
Mike was the "bubble" guy. He needed to win the hand to get into the money. He had it won until the river when a 6 arrived. Mike finished 28th, one out of the money.
Within the last five out of the tournament, and out of the money, were a who's who of poker. Neither Johnny Chan, Donn O'Dea nor Jay Heimowitz were able to hold off elimination, with the short stacks they had.
FINALLY, A TABLE
Dominic Bourke was on fire. When Bill Ingram moved all-in with A K on the flop, Bourke found that he liked the flop also. The flop had come K Q 7. Dominic had Q Q. The turn was an Ace. Only an Ace or a King would have saved Ingram. Like an unrepentant sinner, Bill wasn't saved. He accepted 12th into his heart.
Brian Kneier was the next to test the dominant Dominic. Brian got out-kicked in the teeth for his foolishness. A K beats A Q in these parts, partner. Brian missed out by two.
Stan Schwartz couldn't have known how lucky he was, not to have to come back the next day. Or maybe not, maybe Stan would have livened up the mortician's convention that started the next day at 4 p.m.
Anyway, Schwartz didn't get there, because Daniel Negreanu cracked Stan's Q Q with his A J when an Ace fell on the flop.
The grateful dead take their seats.
In a final table that moved watching cars rust, past tournament poker as a spectator sport, the only early excitement came when Dan Heimiller tried to squeeze a five off the deck.
Dan was second low stack and saw quickly that this wasn't an aggressive group of players. He tried to get aggressive from late position with a pair of 5's, after Pouya Pouyamajd (a great name) had limped with A A in early position. Pouya had a no-brainer calling Heimiller's all-in bet. The board came 8 7 7 Q 7. And Mr. Excitement was gone in 9th. We would learn to miss him.
It seemed like days later when Lee Markholt tried a move. Lee had been all-in a few times and survived. He picked the wrong time to get cute. A raise from early position with 6's found Daniel Negreanu with K's.
The railbirds got one of their few thrills when a six windowed on the flop. Half the audience yelled "Six" the other half yelled "King." They were both right. The flop came 6 K J followed by 4 5. Lee Markholt was 8th.
John Morgan had caught a couple of nasty beats and was all-in for the big blind. His Q 3 got straightened by Chris Ferguson's Q 10. John Morgan was 7th.
It was Pouya's turn to be short. He tried to pick up the blinds with Q 10 off and was called by Dolph Arnold with A 2 off. The board came nothing and Pouya went 6th.
The problem with being too passive is that the blinds continue going up. Eventually you are blinded off. Dolph Arnold finally saw a hand he could raise with, considering his few chips - J 9 of Clubs. Dominic Bourke found an A K in his hand and called. An Ace flopped and Dolph got to go quietly to see Jack for his 5th place money.
Maybe these guys knew what they were doing. Chris "Jesus" Ferguson got aggressive with A Q suited in a battle of the blinds. Dominic Bourke limped with A A, and Jesus raised all-in. Dominic called, and the board was a rainbow nine high, and Jesus aggressively exited the proceedings in 4th.
It had taken four hours to bust six players. Amazing in a game as fraught with traps as Pot Limit Holdem is.
The problem was you couldn't get anyone to call a raise, even if you put a gun to their head.
Finally, in one of the rare three way pots, Myron Rosenbaum went all-in on an up and down straight draw. Since Myron had no money left to speak of, the call was easy by Daniel Negreanu and Dominic Bourke.
Myron had Q 10. The board came A J 9. Dominic and Daniel both checked the turn which was a 6. When a 5 came on the river, Bourke showed his hand rather than checking. Daniel Negreanu said wait a minute and shoved in a stack which caused Dominic Bourke to fold.
Negreanu had rivered the nut straight and wanted to be paid off. No takers. Myron, who'd waited 22 years to play at the final table of a World Series event, and got this one, left with third money.
At this point Daniel Negreanu had a two to one chip lead. Over the next half hour, Dominic Bourke worked his stack closer to even.
It took the last hand to create a little excitement and send the railbirds home happy.
With Bourke on the button in the small blind, he raised. In what must have been a shocking act to Dominic, Daniel Negreanu reraised. Bourke called, to make a $108,000 pot.
The flop came Qc Jh 3c.
Daniel had A Q of Hearts and bet the pot. Bourke raised $47,000 more all-in, and Negreanu called.
Dominic had Jc 10c, with second pair and a flush draw.
Bourke needed a J, a 10, or any club. The turn was the 6s and the 5s was the river card.
Daniel Negreanu's tightness had put a stranglehold on the Pot Limit Hold 'em bracelet and $169,460. Over four hours of tedium was ended by an exciting finish.
$2,000 Pot Limit Holdem 229 Entries - $458,000 Prize Pool
(Patty Hughes and Rudy Lotief)
The No-Limit Super Satellites start each evening at 8:40 PM in the Satellite area. The Entry Fee is $220 for $200 in Tournament chips and there are unlimited $200 re-buys during the first hour, if you have less than $200 in Tournament chips. You may also make a single or double add-on at the end of the re-buy period. Blinds start at $5/$10 and increase every 20 minutes. Available monies will be converted into non-negotiable, non-transferable, non-refundable seats in the $10,000 World Championship event, with at least $5,000 in cash and $500 Lammers being divided among the final table players.
WSOP SUPER SATELLITE #14 Thursday 30 April 1998
HE GAZES AT THE CHAMPIONSHIP
I can't root for players to beat other players. I'm a reporter. But Bill Gazes did me a big favor last night and I'm grateful to him for it. Bill won an entry, fair and square. Now, I can't give him one he hasn't earned, or take one away that he has earned.
Bill Gazes is in the Big Dance. Whew!!!
Tonight, 152 players bought 152 rebuys bringing the prize pool to, $60,800.
The following were the rewards for making the final table:
Some of the "names" who competed were:
None of these esteemed players made the final table.
Last night Tony Lantz was twelfth. tonight he put out the 12th. Lantzed him actually (moan). Short stacked Ken Lennard went all-in with KQ of Diamonds, Tony had an A 10 off. That's what happened. What happened? An A 10 came off the deck onto the board.
Paul Honas, who won a seat last night had visions of cash. His vision was blurred. After taking a few beats, he was all-in for two chips. He didn't show his hand, as Bob Loar showed trip 3's. Paul was 11th.
Loar wasn't done. That's why they call him Loar, he's a legend. Chris Sontun was in the small blind and felt his A 2 should be worth something. Loar in the big said "Naw." Bob's K J turned Kings and Jacks. Chris can work on his suntan. He was 10th, one out of the money.
The final table:
Frank Schend made the fatal error we see players make every night. He didn't bring enough chips with him when he came to the final table. he had to try something. He went all-in with A 10 off. Bill Gazes had K K. No Ace, no seat.
Don Pittman was next on the short list. He hoped a Q J would hold up. The same guy as last time Gazes at his cards and finds A J. 8th is the Pitts, Man.
It wasn't Sed's Day. He went all-in with Q J not having learned from Don Pittman. Jim Karambinis had an A 10. It may be Thursday, but to Fry Day, Jim K waited until the river to get his Ace. Bye Day. You're 7th.
Every night it happens. It's heart wrenching. It's agonizing. It's not happening to us! Someone has to be last out, before the Championship seats are passed out.
Tonight, it was Chris Syrpes who was surplus. He didn't show his hand when Bob "the Legend" Loar flopped an Ace, then showed one in his hand.
The winners for Super Satellite #14 were:
SINGLE TABLE SATELLITES
(Becky Kerber, Barbara Lotief and Terry Vanderlip)
Single Table Satellites are run continuously 21 hours every day (8:00 AM until 5:00 AM) and usually last around 90 minutes. There are featured Satellites each day for the next day's event, as well as other Satellites depending on demand. Single Table Satellites for the $10,000 Main event and for the next no-limit Holdem event are spread frequently. Binion's charges $10 per player in a Satellite.
For the $220 buy-in No Limit Holdem Satellites, ten Players start with $800 each in chips. The blinds start at $10/$25, increase every 15 minutes, and the winner gets four $500 Lammers plus $100 in cash.
For the $1,010 buy-in Single Table $10,000 Satellites, ten players start with $4,000 each in chips. The blinds start at $25/50 and increase every 20 minutes. The winner gets a non-transferrable seat in the Championship Event.
LAS VEGAS WEATHER
A little warmer today. The Temperature sign atop Binion's Horseshoe read 85 degrees at 3:00 PM on Wednesday. Hardly any wind. It was sunny, with some white, pillowy clouds around.
About two hours into today's tight and deliberate PL Holdem Final Table, Jack said "OK Guys, if this isn't over by 4:00 tomorrow afternoon, we'll have to start upping the limits a little faster."
Jack fights a continuing battle to keep the Final Table area clear, and to keep spectators in their seat, in the bleachers. Periodically he will say "If you are in the Final Table area, and are on your feet, you are in the wrong place."
LENGTH OF FINAL TABLE
TOTAL PRIZE MONEY
First 8 Events: $4,399,000 (1998) vs $4,403,500 (1997)
WSOP FINAL TABLE DEALS
Formal, official Deals at the WSOP are done in private, under the supervision and guidance of Jack McClelland, WSOP Tournament Co-ordinator. Deals represent a reallocation, or split of the announced remaining prize pool, that is agreeable to all remaining players. All remaining players do not have to participate in an official Deal, as long as all remaining players give their consent.
All pay outs by Binion's, and the tax reporting will reflect the Deal allocation, but press releases and official WSOP earnings reflect the scheduled, announced pay outs.
Jack McClelland tries to immediately squelch any "Deal talking" in the Final Table area, and will stop the playing clock and allow a "Deal break" at any time.
A normal Deal will probably allocate the bulk of the remaining prize pool equally (or unequally, relative to chip count, perceived ability, bargaining skills etc.) between the remaining participants, with a small portion (perhaps 10 % or so) and the Title going to the eventual winner. Some deals may earmark some of the un allocated portion to the eventual second or third place finisher, in addition to the allocation for the first place money.
Binion's attempts to prevent private Deals, which are unenforceable and may present tax complications, by the participants. Binion's probably would prefer a Deal free environment all together, but recognizes that a top heavy pay out structure is conducive to Deals, and has arrived at the current procedure as the best solution.
Any player abusing employees or other players, either verbally or physically (swearing, throwing cards, etc.) or disrupting the tournament will be penalized. The following will be the MINIMUM penalty imposed:
FIRST OFFENSE - 20 minutes away from the table.
(Blinds and/or antes to be forfeited)
The WSOP Floorpeople will be strictly enforcing the rules, with zero tolerance. Every player starts each Event with a clean slate as far as penalties are concerned.
Jack McClelland is assisted by Steve Morrow and Jeff Vanderlip as Assistant Tournament Coordinators.
The 1998 WSOP continues the two-day format that was inaugurated last year, for most of the tournaments. Also, all two-day events start one level lower than in past years, and each level at the Final Table has been lengthened from 60 minutes to 80 minutes. Limit Holdem and Omaha events have two new levels of betting. First day play continues until the field is reduced to the Final Table, and Final Table play begins at 4:00 PM on the second day.
In addition to the money and a gold bracelet, each winner of a 1998 WSOP Event will get free rooms at next year's WSOP. If you win more than one Event, you can roll subsequent hotel accommodations over to later years.
Shift Supervisors Jimmy Stefan, John Buchanan, Tony Shelton and Cathy Wood run the Poker room where the lower limit games are played.
Games being spread on 30 April:
Shift Supervisors John "Scoff" Sheffield, Kathy Hudson and Marshall Kassoff run the higher limit games on the south end of the Tournament Pavilion.
Games being spread on 30 April:
$10,000 CHAMPIONSHIP ENTRANTS
Updated through Thursday Noon 30 April 1998
Daniel Negreanu, a 23 year-old Canadian, captured the $2,000 Pot Limit Hold'em title, collecting $169,460 and a gold winner's bracelet and becoming the youngest World Series tournament champion in memory.
"I was so excited I almost fainted when that river card didn't beat me," he said. "It was the first World Series event I've ever played in, and I won a satellite to get in." Negreanu has played poker for a living since he was 16. "In the last three years I worked very hard, improving my game by playing with the best players. I feel like I've finally been rewarded for all the effort," he said.
"At the final table, I looked around and decided I didn't want to play heads-up against Dominic, because he was the trickiest," Negreanu said.
But it was Dominic Bourke, a 28 year-old Briton, who outlasted the others and began heads-up play with $163,000 in chips against Negreanu's $295,000. For 35 minutes they punched and counter-punched, Bourke managing to draw exactly even.
Seven minutes later Bourke on the button raised $12,000, Negreanu re-raised $36,000 and Bourke called. It was a classic hold'em hand: The flop came Jh-Qc-3c, giving Negreanu with Ah-Qh top pair. Bourke, with Jc-l0c, had second pair and a flush draw. Negreanu bet $108,000, the size of the pot, and Bourke went all in, making it a $424,000 pot.
With the onlookers hugely excited, the dealer put out a five and six of spades on the turn and river, and the title was Negreanu's.
"I'm very, very happy," said Bourke, a financial trader in London who has played poker for only three years. "I thought Dan played excellently throughout the final table. I was early chip leader and wanted to dominate play, but for a long while I didn't get the hands. Then when I wanted to make some moves, Dan and Myron Rosenbaum, both sitting to my right, pre-empted me. It was a tough table. Nobody gave their chips away."
Rosenbaum, 67, a retired school teacher and poker devotee, finished third. "I feel very good," he said. "I've played in every World Series since 1977 and I've never reached a final table before. It's a pleasure. Timing is one of the biggest things in hold'em which is a game of opportunity."
Rosenbaum, who has cashed twice before at the WSOP, was eliminated in a three-way pot when Negreanu caught a river straight.
Fourth place went to Chris Ferguson, 35, his sixth final-table finish in eight cashes at the WSOP since 1995. "I feel okay, I didn't come in with expectations today," said Ferguson, who has played tournaments reglarly for four years while being a "perpetual student" of computer sciences now nearing his PhD. Ferguson exited when he was all-in with A-Q but ran into Bourke's pocket aces and a board of rags.
Dolph Arnold, 58, Regional Marketing Executive in Houston for the MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, took fifth, his sixth WSOP money finish which brought his total earnings to just under $100,000. "They were gambling," he said, "but unlike yesterday, I wasn't catching cards." He was knocked out with J-9 of clubs by Bourke's A-K which made top pair.
Sixth place went to Pouya Pouyamajd, an Iranian-born resident of Germany who is a "semi-pro" poker player and works in an import-export firm. "It was very exciting, my first U.S. tournament and the highest-level event I've ever entered," said Pouyamajd, 32, who has had considerable success on the European tournament circuit.
Finishing seventh was John Morgan, a 49 year-old British retail businessman and the 1996 $1,500 No Limit Hold'em titleist. "It's obviously disappointing - I'd hoped to make the top three - but it's always magic here at the World Series. There's nowhere like it," Morgan said. He was crippled with pocket jacks when Negreanu flopped four queens and was eliminated all-in the next hand.
Lee Markholt, a 34 year-old former rodeo bull rider and a poker pro for the past five years, took eighth place, his first WSOP money finish. He was knocked out in an odd hand: holding pocket sixes, he flopped a set, as did Negreanu who had pocket kings. No six fell; a river jack gave Markholt a losing full house.
Dan Heimiller, 35, finished 9th, his pocket fives running into Pouyamajd's pocket aces. Heimiller's only comment was, "Oops!"
The Final Table
d = dealer
First action reported in a betting round, normally means the first player that put money into the pot in that betting round. A check is usually not reported as the first action in a betting round. Folds are not always reported. If there are four players at the beginning of a betting round, and it's reported that one player bets and is called by one other player, then the remaining two players folded.
*** 2 minutes remaining at the 1,000/2,000 Blind level.