This week brought some of the lightest high-stakes action since we began tracking the nosebleed-stakes online poker games… and for good reason. Many favorite online regulars were taking their games live into Bobby’s Room, where the action has been running virtually around the clock over the last several days. Others, like Hac “trex313” Dang and Phil Ivey, were tending to their stacks in the WSOP Main Event. Typically prolific online players Gus Hansen and Tom “durrrr” Dwan logged only a single 44-hand heads-up session, while the equally active “DIN_FRU” managed only 110 hands all week. There was still a bit of action to be found on the limit tables, however, where Ted “profbackwards” Forrest, Van Marcus, and “—DONKEY1965—“ all logged some serious hours.
“--DONKEY1965—“, Ted Forrest, “NEKOTYAN” Score Big H.E.R.O.S. Wins
The biggest swings in online poker this week remarkably came in the short-handed H.E.R.O.S. games. Ted “profbackwards” Forrest racked up a $111,000 win during some early morning action on the fourth of July, taking on Sami “LarsLuzak” Kelopuro, Erick Lindgren, Joe “Nizot Skizared” Cassidy, “PixKim,” and “—DONKEY1965—“ at the $500/1,000 level. The game ran nearly all night with familiar faces like Justin “Boosted J” smith, Nick Schulman, Chau Giang, Richard Ashby, and “sotto monte” all making appearances.
Ashby and Giang were involved in what ended up being one of the more baffling limit hold’em hands of the night. Playing five-handed, the action was folded to Giang in the small blind. He limped in and Ashby raised from the big blind. Giang called and they saw a flop. Giang led out, Ashby raised again, and they ended up capping the action. The turn came the and Giang led again. Ashby raised, and they capped it again on fourth street. The river came the and Giang led out a third time. Ashby raised and Giang called. As it turned out, Ashby made that pre-flop raise from the big blind with , the flop hitting his hand absolutely perfectly, making him the nut straight and an open-ended straight flush draw to boot! Ashby hit his flush on the end and raked in the $18,000 pot while Giang mucked, leaving fans to wonder what he had.
The following day, “NEKOTYAN” took down a $125,000 win at the $500/1,000 level against largely the same cast of characters, while the next evening, the stakes were raised to $1,000/2,000. “—DONKEY1965—“ emerged as that night’s runaway winner, booking a $283,000 profit against “Moscowflyer,” Eli Elezra, Ashton “theASHMAN103” Griffin, and Ted Forrest.
In another brutal case of aces cracked, --DONKEY1965—raised to $2,000 from the small blind playing limit hold’em. Elezra three-bet and –DONKEY1965—called. The flop came down and Elezra led out. –DONKEY1965—raised, and the betting was capped. The turn fell the . Undeterred, Elezra led again, --DONKEY1965—raised, Elezra three-bet and --DONKEY1965—called. The river paired the board with the and Elezra bet out. –DONKEY1965—flat-called. Elezra rolled over for aces up, but –DONKEY1965—turned a flush with to take down the $30,000 pot.
Van “Sirens” Marcus Drops Six Figures at PLO, O/8
Australian pro Van “Sirens” Marcus experienced quite a rough session early Tuesday morning on Full Tilt Poker. First, he took on Ted “profbackwards” Forrest in a bit of heads-up $1,000/2,000 Omaha 8-or-better. The two battled it out mano a mano for about ninety minutes before “NEKOTYAN,” Richard Ashby, and Josh Arieh joined in on the fun. While Forrest emerged as a $49,000 winner in the session, Marcus dropped just over $100,000 over the course of 400 hands.
One of the larger scooped pots came during three-handed action between Ashby, Marcus and Forrest. Ashby raised to $2,000 on the button, Forrest folded the small blind and Marcus defended his big blind. Marcus check-called Ashby’s bet on the flop, then checked again when the hit the turn. Ashby bet, Marcus raised, Ashby three-bet, Marcus capped and Ashby called. The river fell the and Marcus check-called one more bet. It was bad news at showdown, however, as Ashby flipped over for a king-high flush and a 8-6-5-3-A low to scoop the $26,500 pot.
Following his Omaha-8 session, Marcus switched over to pot-limit Omaha, where he played a heads-up match with Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond across two $200/400 tables. Galfond dominated the action, winning $122,000 over the course of two hours and 550-plus hands. He also managed to drag 12 of the 16 largest pots they played.
In one particularly ugly hand, Galfond kicked off the action with a raise to $1,200. Marcus three-bet to $3,600, Galfond four-bet to $10,800, and Marcus came back over the top for his entire stack, $32,196 in all. Galfond called and turned up while Marcus revealed the other two aces with . The flop, however, came down , Galfond hitting two pair. The turn was the , the river was the and Galfond raked in the $64,392 pot, leaving Marcus to rebuy.
Who’s Up? Who’s Down?
This week’s biggest winners: “—DONKEY1965—“ (+$265,000), “NEKOTYAN” (+$123,000), Cole South (+$77,000)
This week’s biggest losers: Ashton “theASHMAN103” Griffin (-$218,000), Van “Sirens” Marcus (-$168,000), Eli Elezra (-$90,000)
"The Online Railbird" report is a weekly feature summarizing the biggest matchups in the online game. Many of the largest online collisions take place at Full Tilt. Why not join the fun?