Last Tuesday, Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond took center stage as part of ESPN’s continuing coverage of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event. You can catch all of the action every Tuesday at 9:00pm ET with the first of two one-hour episodes.
Galfond actually became the Main Event’s chip leader early on after spiking a set of fives against a player who held top pair, top kicker. Then, he continued his hot run by turning a straight against top pair to scoop another 215,000-chip pot. In a memorable moment, Galfond conducted an interview with ESPN cameras and played online poker the entire time on his Mac. At the end of the segment, he noted that he was down $20,000. Oops.
PokerStars pro Jason Mercier doubled up Robert Mizrachi with pocket fives against pocket kings. Then, recently signed PokerStars pro Vanessa Selbst hit the rail after her A-2 of hearts could not hold up against K-J of hearts. Her opponent hit a jack on the flop and no ace came on the turn or river. Mercier soon followed after running A-10 into pocket aces. Both collected $27,000 for their five-day WSOP Main Event runs.
Fan favorite Sammy Farha also made his way out the door after bumping A-2 into pocket sevens. Farha’s opponent hit a set and that was all she wrote for the “High Stakes Poker” regular. Galfond’s chip lead at the feature table continued to grow, as he boasted a stack of 1.9 million, just 200,000 less than the rest of the table combined. Not as fortunate was 1998 Main Event champ Scotty Nguyen, who blew 40% of his stack with pocket queens against A-K. His opponent hit a king on the flop and Nguyen saw his stack shrink by nearly half. Bad beat, baby.
Donny Mizrachi became the second Mizrachi brother to bust from the Main Event after the money bubble when his J-9 of diamonds could not overcome Theo Jorgensen’s K-Q of clubs. Mizrachi flopped a nine, but a jack on the river gave Jorgensen a straight. Meanwhile, Jonathan Duhamel, who will ultimately become the November Nine chip leader, saw his stack plummet to just 15 big blinds after doubling up another player with A-10 against pocket queens.
On the up-and-up was Matt “mcmatto” Affleck, who sent a player packing after making top pair. Affleck, the Day 5 chip leader last year, became the first player to leap over three million chips in 2010. At the feature table, Italian poker sensation Filippo Candio busted a player with A-9 against pocket kings to win a pot of nearly 800,000, while Jorgensen scored a double elimination, causing him to dance a jig.
Former Bodog pro Jean-Robert Bellande picked up pocket kings and sent a tablemate with pocket queens home to move over 1.1 million in chips. Then, Duhamel began an ascent of his own, pushing all-in pre-flop with A-5 of clubs. Another player called with A-10, but Duhamel spiked a five on the flop to take the lead in the hand for good.
Nguyen open-shoved all-in on a board reading 10-3-9-3 holding pocket jacks for jacks-up. Despite the premium hand, James “croll103” Carroll made the call and tabled pocket tens for a boat, doubling up through Nguyen, who again lost another half of his stack in the process. Nguyen would find the rail after calling all-in before the flop with A-J of spades against Mads Wissing’s pocket kings. Nguyen picked up a straight draw on the turn, but a river jack left him heading for the cage in 209th place.
Robert Mizrachi doubled up holding pocket kings, while Peter Jetten knocked out an adversary after picking up pocket queens. Back at the feature table, Galfond 5bet all-in with pocket nines against Jonathan Driscoll, who wisely laid down K-8.
Check out ESPN’s coverage of the 2010 WSOP Main Event every Tuesday at 9:00pm ET.