If you haven’t had a chance to check out the PokerStars sponsored “Big Game,” now is the time. This week has featured a bevy of big pots and heavy-hitting poker banter that makes the one-hour high-stakes cash game show one for the ages. The series, which is PokerStars’ answer to GSN’s “High Stakes Poker,” airs late night during the week on Fox. However, it is not shown in several markets, so check your local listings for details.
The “Big Game” pits one “Loose Cannon” online qualifier against five sharks. Each “Loose Cannon” is staked with $100,000 and can keep any amount they win off their five adversaries. “Loose Cannons” play 150 hands and the blinds are constant at $200/$400. There’s also an ante of $100 per player that is paid entirely by the person on the button. Veteran sports announcer Chris Rose and PokerRoad’s Joe Stapleton have the call of the “Big Game.”
The “Loose Cannon” for this week is Aaron Jensen, who is from Seattle and set out for riches on the “Big Game” in order to rake in cash for his wedding. He told “Big Game” hostess Amanda Leatherman before taking to the felt, “I’ve been thinking about this for the last couple of weeks. It’s been a little studying and a little stressing.”
The talk of Monday’s installment of the PokerStars “Big Game” wasn’t Jensen, but rather PartyPoker pro Tony G. Picking up 6-5 in the small blind, he open-raised to $1,200 pre-flop and received a call from Vanessa Rousso in the small blind with pocket aces. The flop of 6-J-5 was golden for Tony G, who bet $2,000 with two pair. Rousso, holding an overpair, made it $5,000 and Tony G 3bet to $20,000. Rousso called behind and was elated to pick up an ace on the turn.
Now with the lead in the hand, Rousso slyly just called a $10,000 turn bet from Tony G and another five came on the river. Both players had boats and Tony G checked in the dark. Rousso moved all-in and Tony G made the call, shipping the massive $192,000 pot to the lone female at the table. Tony G told his opponents that he didn’t plan to reload after losing more than half of his $178,000 starting stack.
The news got worse for Tony G, who led out for $4,000 on a flop of 8-7-3 with two spades holding K-5 of the suit. After a call from Daniel Negreanu, Scott Seiver pushed it to $21,000 and Tony G came over-the-top all-in. Seiver called all-in for $88,000 and showed pocket eights for top set. The turn was the nine of diamonds and the river was the three of diamonds, doubling up Seiver.
Tony G walked off the set despite having Seiver covered and, following a commercial break, returned to a paltry stack of $4,000, or 10 big blinds. Despite vowing not to reload, Tony G ultimately borrowed $100,000 from Negreanu and was back in action. Seiver continued his aggression, betting $7,000 on a flop of 10-3-2 holding Q-9. Jensen, armed with a wired pair of nines, raised to $35,000. Seiver did his best Hollywood impersonation before laying it down and showing respect to the “Loose Cannon.”
To close out Monday’s kickoff episode, Tony G was down $177,000, while Rousso had pulled in $110,000 in profit. Todd Brunson was also at the table, but largely steered clear of any action and did not raise a single time pre-flop. If the “Big Game” sounds like a hoot, check it out for yourself during the week. It airs at 1:00am ET or 2:00am ET in most markets on Fox.