Many players called Sunday “the biggest day in online poker.” Yes, Sunday had the glamour, the big fields and the high hopes, but let’s face it: Monday was the day that really mattered as the 178 players who survived the first day of the World Championship of Poker (WCOOP) Main Event were back on the felt and playing for some serious cash and a $1.7 million 1st place prize.
End of Day 1 chip leader Jason “TheMasterJ33″ Dewitt had several hours to warm up his poker chops as he was one of the 555 players who made it to Day 2 of the World Poker Tour’s Borgata Poker Open. Both Dewitt and Scott “dorinvandy” Dorin divided their time between the two events, trying to miss as few hands as possible.
Missing hands turned out to be the least of Dewitt’s worries though. His biggest problem was Isaac “philivey2694″ Haxton. In just ten minutes, Haxton wreaked havoc on Dewitt’s massive stack, first doubling through him with pocket jacks when Dewitt held pocket tens and then doubling again after his pocket nines turned a set against Dewitt’s top pair of kings. Haxton’s reign of terror would continue when Dewitt’s Q-J flopped top pair and ran into Haxton’s pocket kings. It wasn’t long after that when Dewitt hit the rail in 86th place. On the bright side, he is towards the top of the chip counts of the 170 players returning to Day 3 at the Borgata.
Even with Dewitt’s chips to help him, Haxton would fall short of the final table as well, going out in 31st place. Other big names that finished towards the top of the payouts but shy of the final nine included Dorn (60th), Layne “reloadthis” Flack (55th) Eric “basebaldy” Baldwin (54th), Tony “DrunkPPlaya” Gargano (47th), Brad “FatsoFat6969″ Craig (42nd), Scott “xmrstyle” Bohlman (22nd), Hunter “HEMIPowerSWT” Frey (21st), Thomas “tommyboy83″ Koral (20th) and Shawn “buck21″ Buchanan (15th).
While these players had trouble keeping up with the pack, one name shot to the top of the chip counts with around 40 players left and remained there straight on through to the final table. You would think it was surprising to see Daniel “djk123″ Kelly’s name atop the leaderboard once again, but considering his amazing results this WCOOP, it almost felt expected that he would make an appearance at the series’ biggest final table. In addition to having momentum on his side, Kelly also had a little help from one of this year’s other multiple bracelet winners, Ryan “g0lfa” D’Angelo. According to the observer chat, D’Angelo sent his friend a good luck gift as players drew closer to the final table:
g0lfa: djk check your transfers… you have some lucky money
The lucky money was enough to get Kelly to the final table with the chip lead, but it would be the other big stack that walked away with the bracelet:
Seat 1: reddeevil (4,222,220)
Seat 2: Mudvaynes (700,486)
Seat 3: Yevgeniy “Jovial Gent” Timoshenko (10,616,564)
Seat 4: Daniel “djk123″ Kelly (12,160,610)
Seat 5: Udon Wannit (4,549,346)
Seat 6: Ben “Chong94″ LeFew (3,857,482)
Seat 7: Jaime “Xaston” Kaplan (2,150,576)
Seat 8: PeachyMer (3,617,956)
Seat 9: Supa4real (1,004,760)
Jovial Gent would quickly chip up to even with djk123 and the pair held a tremendous chip advantage over the rest of the field. The first hand that resulted in an all-in came in a multiway raised pot. The flop fell A 7 3 and djk123, who was the initial raiser, led out for a bet. Both Udon Wannit and PeachyMer called and the trio saw the 5 hit on the turn. Action checked to PeachyMer who bet out a million chips into the 1.8 million chip pot. Djk123 folded and Udon Wannit moved all-in for an additional 1.8 million. PeachyMer thought briefly before calling all but 100,000 of her chips with A Q, which was outkicked by Udon Wannit’s A K. The river brought the 5 and PeachyMer was in need of several double ups.
She got the first one early on when her A T got the best of Chong94′s 8 8, but when she moved all-in a second time her A 7 got called by djk123′s A K and the superior ace prevailed as the board ran out K 7 6 3 9. PeachyMer was out in 9th plce with $96,480 to her credit.
It only took five hands before the final table lost their next player. Supa4Real was down to 357,000 when they moved all-in over the top of Chong94′s raise at the 50,000/100,000 ante 12,500 blind level. Chong94 called and his J J had Supa4real’s T T dominated. The 9 8 7 flop brought an open-ended straight draw for Supa4real, but Chong94′s jacks held as the turn and river came 3 then 7. Supa4Real was out in 8th place which merited the first six-figure payout of $182,240.
The rash of eliminations continued on the very next hand when action folded around to Mudvaynes and they shipped their last half a million chips all-in. Djk123 called from the big blind with Q T and Mudvaynes showed T 9. The board ran out K 3 2 7 A and djk123′s queen high was enough to knock Mudvaynes out in 6th place.
Amazingly, the carnage continued on the very next hand. Action folded to djk123 on the button and he min-raised. Chong94 reraised out of the big blind and djk123 put his opponent all-in, having Chong94′s remaining 3.3 million chips easily covered. Chong94 called with A J and djk123 held 6 7. The 5 4 3 flop hit djk123 square in the jaw, bringing him a straight and leaving Chong94 dead to a chop. The 6 on the turn kept Chong94′s chances for a split pot alive, but the T on the river left him with just ace high and out in 5th place with a $375,200 prize.
Jovial Gent decided it was his turn to eliminate an opponent just four hands later. Xaston raised preflop and Jovial Gent called from the button. The flop fell T 9 3 and the players qickly got it all-in with Jovial Gent showing K T for top pair and a flush draw while Xaston needed help in order for his A 9 to improve. The 8 on the turn left Xaston drawing dead and suddenly the field was cut to four.
Play slowed down slightly after that as djk123 and Jovial Gent used their massive stacks to put pressure on their two opponents. Seeking a chance to double up, reddeevil moved all-in preflop and djk123 called with 4 4. He was racing with reddeevil’s A J. The board brought a jack on the flop and the shortest stack doubled up to just over 5 million chips. Djk123 still had plenty of chips to work with and it wasn’t long before he and reddeevil tangled once again. Djk123 opened for a raise, reddeevil called from the small blind and Jovial Gent reraised out of the big blind. Both players called and after reddeevil checked the A 6 5 flop , Jovial Gent fired out a million chip bet. Djk123 called and reddeevil quickly check-raised all-in. Jovial Gent folded while djk123 called with A J for top pair. Reddeevil showed a flush draw with K J, which hit when the 4 peeled on the turn. Reddeevil doubled through djk123 again jumping to 12 million chips while djk123 fell to 10 million.
Just two hands later, all 10 million of those chips would end up in the pot preflop as djk123 and Jovial Gent tangled in a blind versus blind raising war. Djk123 moved all-in with T T and Jovial Gent quickly called, tabling K K, which held as the board ran out K J 4 3 Q and djk123 made his surprising exit in 4th place. He pocketed $643,200 for his impressive Main Event run, bringing his total 2009 WCOOP winnings to $956,956.69. He also officially earned the title of 2009 WCOOP Player of the Series, which earns him a premium package to the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure in January of 2010.
Jovial Gent continued to thin the field when he and reddeevil got it all-in on the turn in a hand with the board reading K5 2 8. Jovial Gent had K 8 for two pair while reddeevil’s 6 9 gave them straight and flush draws. The river brought the heart to make reddeevil’s flush, but it was the 8, making Jovial Gent a boat, giving him the pot and sending reddeevil home in 3rd place.
At the outset of heads-up play Jovial Gent held a more than 3-1 chi advantage over Udon Wannit. It would take only seven hands before he extended that lead to 7-1 after making another full house on a 9 9 4 7 7 board with Q 7 and taking down a 9 million chip pot.
With almost 6 million chips left, Udon Wannit still had room to maneuver and tried to make a play at his opponent to pick up some chips a few hands later. Udon Wannit opened for a raise from the button and Jovial Gent called from the big blind before checking the K 8 6 flop. Udon Wannit bet, Jovial Gent check-raised him and Udon Wannit moved all-in. Jovial Gent called and showed K 6 for two pair while Udon Wannit held 5 6 for just middle pair. The 3 on the turn and 4 on the river were no help to Udon Wannit and he was out in second place with an astounding $1,286,400 to show for his runner-up finish.
Yevgeniy “Jovial Gent” Timoshenko took down the top prize of $1,715,200 and a WCOOP bracelet to go along with a resume that already includes World Poker Tour and Asian Poker Tour titles. Apparently he was not content to call it a day though and also booked a top three finish in Full Tilt Poker’s $1K Monday, guaranteeing himself at least an additional $36,000.
1st: Yevgeniy “Jovial Gent” Timoshenko ($1,715,200)
2nd: Udon Wannit ($1,286,400)
3rd: reddeevil ($933,712)
4th: Daniel “djk123″ Kelly ($643,200)
5th: Jaime “Xaston” Kaplan ($482,400)
6th: Ben “Chong94″ LeFew ($375,200)
7th: Mudvaynes ($268,00)
8th: Supa4real ($182,240)
9th: PeachyMer ($96,480)