WSOP 2015 E02 – Big One for One Drop World Series of Poker 2015

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This was a televised episode of the 2014 Big One for One Drop Tournament, on ESPN. It had a top prize of $15 million to the winner, and second place was $5 million and change. All sorts of star poker players compete in this. Antonio Esfandiari, a former champion of this tourney in 2012, is interviewed about half-way through. Eight players only will get cash in this competition. Announcer Norman Chad is terrifically funny throughout as he mentally advises players.

Noah Schwartz is at the featured table against Scott Seiver and Esfandiari. Norman Chad is in rare form and may have dropped acid or just have attended a movie marathon, before this tournament. His comments on Seiver’s poker face:

“Scott scares me ….I half expect a Hannibal Lecter moment.” and “Scott Seiver, channeling the godfather before a big Corleone family decision.” Chad is not just comic relief, but as attentive to the quality of cardplay as his cohost. There are many strange moments in the hands. At one point, Chad just sputters, “That’s a ridiculous card.” It was; both players supposedly had 100% chance to win, now, since it was the board playing. Later, we get to see the legendary Gabe Kaplan with a pair of Jacks in a very, very strange hand, as 3 of his opponents also have pocket pairs: Haxton with Qs; Steven with 6s; Tom Hall, fortunately for him, with As. The flop and turn make it appear that this deck has magnetized pairs throughout.

Daniel Negreanu makes an appearance at an interesting table, but he is far down in the rankings even at the end of the hand. Then we have a couple of guys both with pocket Aces. Drinan and Katz. That confrontation, at 28 minutes, is a hand you have to see. It’s agonizing.

A three-way hand with everybody holding high cards elicits another diamond from Norman Chad: “Everyone gets a piece of this flop, but all pieces are not equal. I believe this hand is a microcosm of America, and our flawed capitalistic system.” And he continues, later, to compare gambling to the economy.

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