Entering this week’s episode of High Stakes Poker, only three players were in the black: Antonio Esfandiari, Andrew Robl and David Peat. Every other player was down at least $100,000, including Bill Klein who was down more the $400,000. The players welcomed the 1987 and ‘88 World Series of Poker Main Event Champion Johnny Chan to the table for the finale of the session, and the "Oriental Express" jumped out to a very fast start.
SPOILER ALERT: If you are waiting to watch the HSP episode, read no further.
Here’s how the table looked at the beginning of the episode.
|Seat 1||Doyle Brunson||$86,900||-$113,100|
|Seat 2||Vanessa Selbst||$208,900||-$191,100|
|Seat 3||Barry Greenstein||$278,400||-$121,600|
|Seat 4||Antonio Esfandiari||$636,200||+$436,200|
|Seat 5||Andrew Robl||$416,400||+$116,400|
|Seat 7||Bill Klein||$379,400||-$421,600|
|Seat 8||David Peat||$407,600||+$207,600|
Wasn’t the Pot Raised?: Antonio Esfandiari opened the action to $2,500 with . Bill Klein called with on the button, David Peat called with from the small blind, and Doyle Brunson came along with from the big. The dealer fanned , giving Peat and Brunson gut-shot straight draws and Klein top pair. All four players checked, however, and the turn brought the .
Peat led out for $5,000 with his turned straight. Brunson called, not knowing he was drawing to a split, and Klein raised to $22,000 drawing dead. Peat called and Brunson released. The river was the , and Peat checked to try and induce a bluff from Klein. Klein quickly checked behind though, and Peat unhappily tabled the best hand.
“Wasn’t the pot raised?” Vanessa Selbst asked upon seeing Peat’s rags.
“I could’ve made two flushes and three or four straights,” Peat answered with a grin.
Esfandiari Turns Nut-Straight, Selbst Rivers Nut-Flush: David Peat limped in with , Vanessa Selbst limped behind with , Antonio Esfandiari joined the party with , Andrew Robl completed the small blind with , and Bill Klein checked his option with . Everybody checked after the flop fell , and Esfandiari turned the nuts when the fell. The action checked to Selbst who coolly tossed out three yellow $1,000 chips, and Esfandiari opted to call rather than raise. Klein and Peat both called, as well, and the river was the , giving Selbst the nut flush.
Klein and Peat checked to Selbst who fired another $3,000. Esfandiari quickly bumped it up to $12,000, Klein and Peat got out of the way, and Selbst paused for a moment before reraising to $43,000. Esfandiari went into the tank.
“I can beat a bluff,” Selbst said to him.
“You can beat a bluff?” Esfandiari echoed, before instantly mucking his hand.
Here Comes Johnny!: Ten-time WSOP bracelet winner Johnny Chan joined the table after the first commercial break. The players gave him a very warm welcome and Chan got busy on his very first hand.
Selbst open-limped with , Chan, who chose to post the blind in the cutoff seat, checked with . David Peat completed from the small blind with , and Doyle Brunson checked his option with . The flop fell and the blinds checked to Selbst who fired $2,000. Chan called, the two others folded, and the turn was the . Both players checked.
The on the river gave Chan a straight, and after Selbst checked, he bet $4,000. Selbst quickly folded, and Chan raked in his first pot at the table.
Folding Trip Aces: Bill Klein straddled to $1,600, and David Peat was first to act, limping with . The action folded to Antonio Esfandiari who also called with , Johnny Chan called with from the big blind, and Klein checked his option in the straddle with . The flop came down and the action checked to Esfandiari who bet $4,200. Only Chan called.
The turn was the and both players checked, but after the spiked on the river, Chan immediately tossed out $20,000.
“Oh Johnny,” Esfandiari sighed.
He tanked for less than half-a-minute before folding his trip aces, saving himself 20 dimes.
Doyle Felted: David Peat straddled to $1,600, and Doyle Brunson started the action by raising to $4,700 with . Vanessa Selbst three-bet to $14,000 with , and the action folded back to Brunson who called. The flop was a good one – . Brunson checked, fully expecting to check-raise all in, but Selbst checked behind. The turn was the , and Brunon checked again, but this time Selbst bet $17,400.
“I guess you turned three kings,” Brunson announced. “But I’m going in.”
He moved all in for $55,300, and Selbst threw her arms up.
“Does that speech mean you have trip jacks?” she said. “I call.”
Selbst was relieved to see that Brunson did not have trip jacks, and the two decided to run it twice. Neither the nor the made Brunson’s flush, and he was forced to re-buy for another $200,000.
Chan Rivers Another Straight: Johnny Chan opened to $3,000 with and was called by Bill Klein (), David Peat () and Vanessa Selbst (). The flop was and Chan continued for $11,000. Only Selbst called.
The turn was the , and both players checked. The river was the , and Selbst checked a third time. Chan fired $15,000, Selbst tank-called and Chan tabled his straight. Selbst looked very confused as she mucked her hand, and Chan raked in yet another pot.
High Stakes Legends: This week, HSP paid tribute to Betty Carey – one of the most feared cash-game players in the late '70s and early '80s. Amarillo Slim regarded her as the best woman player he’d ever seen. Slim beat Carey heads-up for $100,000, but in a rematch for double the stakes, Carey defeated Slim in under eight minutes.
Quads Are Good: Bill Klein straddled to $1,600 and David Peat limped in with a monster – . Antonio Esfandiari called with , Andrew Robl with , Chan with , and Klein checked with . The flop gave Robl a set and everyone checked. The turn was the , and again all five players checked. The on the river gave Robl quads, and Peat fired $4,000 with his aces. Robl bumped it to $17,000, and Peat begrudgingly folded.
Robl did not show his quads, rather he silently raked in the $30,000 pot.
Last Pot of the Session: Antonio Esfandiari opened to $2,500 with , and David Peat () and Doyle Brunson () called. The flop fell and all three players checked. The on the turn gave Esfandiari a pair of aces, and he fired $5,600. Peat folded, but Brunson raised to $22,600. Esfandiari wasn’t going anywhere, however, and called.
The river was the and Brunson led for $40,000 into a pot of $53,000. Esfandiari tank-folded, and Brunson was shipped the last pot of the session.
Tune in next week, where a brand new group of players will take their seats, headlined by 2010 WSOP Main Event champion Jonathan Duhamel, the Unibomber Phil Laak and ”Silent” Mike Baxter.