The Pinnacle: Aliens, Politics and Spinning Circles of Death

This week’s Pinnacle is more Tolstoy than Basho, so it’s time to climb out of bed, pull those leggings on, and pour a cup of dandelion detox tea. 

We begin in the world of live poker, and a selection of our finest high rollers are in Rozvadov for the World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE) before returning to Las Vegas for the Poker Masters.

Kahle Burns has been the star of the show. If he were a handwriting implement, he would be a fancy fountain pen. The Australian snagged two bracelets to maintain the incredible run of recent form.

Burns was the only person from 83 left with a smirk on his face at the end of the €25,500 No-Limit Hold’em Platinum High Roller. Burns defeated Sam Trickett, heads-up, to win the bracelet.

Here are the final table results:

Final Table Results

  1. Kahle Burns – €596,883
  2. Sam Trickett – €368,899
  3. Hossein Ensan – €251,837
  4. Hakim Zoufri – €177,062
  5. Timothy Adams – €128,326
  6. Alex Foxen – €95,962
  7. Anton Morgenstern – €74,117
  8. Robert Campbell – €59,189

You can catch our full write up, right here.

Burns second bracelet came in Event #13: €2,500 Short-Deck No-Limit Hold’em. The boy wonder beat 179-entrants, including the former Triton Poker Champion, Manig Loeser, heads-up.

Here are the final table results:

Final Table Results

  1. Kahle Burns – €101,384
  2. Manig Loeser – €62,929
  3. Felix Schulze – €42,344
  4. Federico Anselmi – €29,027
  5. Vladimir Peck – €20,444
  6. Oshiri Lahmani – €14,764
  7. Pierre Neuville – €10,939

Here is our coverage of the event.

Besim Hot took down Event #10: €25,500 Mixed Game Championship. The man from Switzerland proved to be an abomination to the 45-entrants who created a €1m prizepool, including preventing Phil Hellmuth from collecting a record 16th bracelet. 

Here are the final table results.

Final Table Results

  1. Besim Hot – €385,911
  2. Phil Hellmuth – €238,509
  3. Dzmitry Urbanovich – €162,463
  4. Benny Glaser – €111,689
  5. Julien Martini – €77,502
  6. Daniel Negreanu – €54,287
  7. Alex Livingston – €38,389

Here is our write-up.

And some love from Daniel Negreanu, and Patrick Leonard.

Phil Ivey finished runner-up in two events (both non-bracelet events). We covered his runner-up finish to Leon Tsoukernik in a €100k Short-Deck No-Limit Hold’em event, in last week’s Pinnacle. A few days later, he finished in the same position in the €50k version losing to Jonathan Depa.

ITM Results

  1. Jonathan Depa – €641,250
  2. Phil Ivey – €384,750
  3. Cary Katz – €256,500

Malaysia has their first WSOP bracelet winner. Chin Wei Lim continued his impressive run of form to conquer the 72-entrant field in the €100,000 No-Limit Hold’em Diamond High Roller a few hop, skips and jumps after finishing runner-up to James Chen in the €250,000. All told, Lim won €4m gross during his time at the WSOPE.

Here are the final table results:

Final Table Results

  1. Chin Wei Lim – €2,172,104
  2. Jean-Noel Thorel – €1,342,459
  3. Anatoly Filatov – €907,301
  4. Christoph Vogelsang – €633,336
  5. Matthias Eibinger – €457,107
  6. Ole Schemion – €341,510
  7. Danny Tang – €264,440
  8. Phil Ivey – €212,504
  9. Daniel Pidun – €177,477
  10. Paul Phua – €177,477
  11. Ryan Riess – €154,285

And our write-up.

At the time of writing, two events are remaining in the WSOPE.

Event #14: €10,350 Main Event

Event #15: €550 Colossus

Nineteen players remain in the Main Event, and none of the Player of the Year (POY) front-runners has stacks. Dario Sammartino leads a pack that includes Anthony Zinno.

The action in the Colossus has only just begun, and Daniel Negreanu, Robert Campbell, and Shaun Deeb can still lock-up the POY title.

POY Race

  1. Daniel Negreanu – 3,971.54
  2. Robert Campbell – 3,857,97
  3. Shaun Deeb – 3,710.64

At the end of the WSOPE, the high roller fraternity will leave be mere silhouettes to Rozvadovians as they venture to Las Vegas for the Poker Masters. Here is the defending champion Ali Imsirovic giving some advice on how to take your opponents down to Zenica town. 

Online Poker: The Poker World Adopts Andrew Yang; Leonard & Drinan Bag Wins, Sam Greenwood All Excited About GG.

U.S. Presidential Candidate, Andrew Yang, has the poker community, and their donation dollars on his side, after tweeting his support for a legalised and fully regulated online poker framework in the land of stars and the stripes. 

Connor ‘blanconegro’ Drinan is an American who would be delighted to grind at home should Yang defy the odds and become the next President. Drinan plays out of Mexico, and this weekend he took down the $2,100 Sunday High Roller on PokerStars for $38,867.

Niklas ‘Lena900’ Astedt finished runner-up in the $109 PokerStars Sunday Million for $82,592, Patrick Leonard won a $2k on partypoker for $80,000, and GGPoker is tickling Sam Greenwood’s belly with some juicy $25ks.

The Debate: Short-Deck Tournaments; Alien Abductions; When to Quit

There was a time in the not too distant past that sticking Rob Yong in a multi-table tournament (MTT) was akin to muzzling a pit bull. 

Things have changed.

The Dusk till Dawn (DTD) owner, finished sixth in a €25,500 No-Limit Hold’em Short-Deck event at the WSOPE for his first live tournament cash since 2015, and the game had a profound effect on him.

Many people agreed that Short-Deck is the future, but not everyone thinks like Yong.

Shaun Deeb said he dislikes Short-Deck ‘a lot.’ 

James Chen said he would prefer to see the action revert to Pot-Limit, pre-flop and No-Limit, post-flop.

Patrick Leonard called the format the ‘worst’ he’s ever played for tournaments. 

What do you think?

Would you choose a Short-Deck tournament over No-Limit Hold’em?

Do Aliens Exist?

According to a friend of Daniel Negreanu’s, the answer is yes.

It kicked off an interesting debate.

Victoria Coren Mitchell wanted to know why the aliens didn’t put his clothes back on and wondered if Greys are visiting earth to merely, ‘collect clothes?’

Negreanu suggested it would be ‘arrogant’ to think that we are the only planet in the universe that has created life, and believes it’s ‘blatantly obvious,’ that aliens exist, and have ‘visited us repeatedly for thousands of years.’

Max Silver asked for evidence of the ‘blatantly obvious’.

Negreanu said, “I wouldn’t even know where to start, honestly.”

Darts star Wayne Mardle asked for just one blatantly obvious fact.

And then nothing.

Aliens must have abducted Daniel Negreanu midway through the debate.

What do you think? 

Do aliens exist, and have they visited our planet for the past thousand years?

When to Quit Poker?

Patrick Leonard’s Twitter feed was on fire this week, likely because he was grinding alone in the bitB Staking Hub. 

Here’s one of his gems.

Leonard goes on to suggest that it’s so challenging to move down in stakes because ‘everybody’ believes they are better than they are, and they know that variance is ‘insane.’

The conversation then turned to the importance of coaching and how most people ask for coaching when they lack confidence or are losing. Instead, Leonard posits that it’s more valuable to get coaching when you’re winning and moving up stakes so you can find out how solid your game actually is.

“Variance is sometimes more dangerous when you’re winning than when you’re losing.” – Patrick Leonard.

It’s a fabulous thread, so make sure you head down the rabbit hole.

Life Outside of Poker: Lew and Lin Have a Baby; Alvarado & Voulgaris Want a Time Machine

Switching to life outside of poker and Triton commentators, past and present, Randy Lew and Celina Lin have had a baby.

JC Alvarado is considering swapping out his smartphone for an old flip phone so that he can get off the grid.

And Haralabos Voulgaris suggests buying a record player and listening to vinyl as a way of ‘slowing things down from time to time.’

The Business: Kalas Joins Upswing; Holz on Mobility

On the business side of things, Doug Polk has hired the former Triton commentator, and high stakes cash game player, Kane Kalas to create a Short-Deck tutorial for Upswing Poker {Rob Yong take note}.

And given that sitting is the new cancer, Fedor Holz, and his team are busting out a live event in Vienna based on the importance of mobility.

The Poll: The Most Overused Word in Poker

Benjamin Pollak is the man running the poll this week. The French star wanted to know what the most overused word was in poker. Pollak chose ‘standard’, as his main bugbear. 

Rui Cao plumped for ‘Preparation.’

Nicolas Levi chose ‘Unlucky.’

Bruno Fitoussi agreed with Pollak that ‘Standard’ is the most overused. 

What about you?

What’s the most overused word in poker?

The Quote(s) of the Week

This week we have three quotes of the week and a tome.

It seems the person who drugged Daniel Negreanu’s friend and left him naked in the desert, also got to Doug Polk’s tea this week.

Doyle Brunson shows what happens when you spend too much time in a poker room.

And Patrick Leonard created this epic thread on staking.

And that’s a wrap for this week’s pinnacle.