We'll admit that the high-stakes online action has been spotty over the past few months, but we can honestly say the past week was likely the best since the events of Black Friday. The games were good, big-name pros were in action, and money was changing hands. All the ingredients were there for one heck of a week!
As it happened, the biggest winners of the week were a plethora of notable players. Viktor “Isildur1” Blom topped the list with $482,065 in profits after playing 9,095 spread across 100 sessions. Close behind was Phil “MrSweets28” Galfond, who won $410,235 throughout 84 sessions comprising 7,655 hands. Rounding out the top three was a familiar face, Ilari “Ilari FIN” Sahamies, who put in 4,620 hands across 45 sessions to bank $315,470.
Likewise, the names on the loser’s side ought to be familiar to most railbirds. Davin “mTw-DaviN” Georgi ended up the biggest loser after dropping $423,650 in 64 sessions of 5,285 hands and Ben “Sauce123” Sulsky was close behind losing $346,023 in 43 sessions made up of 3,835 hands. Rui "PepperoniF" Cao seemed to put in the most volume, playing 13,304 hands spread across 103 sessions, but he still lost $104,684, making him the sixth biggest loser of the week.
OMG . . . It’s MrSweets28!
On Tuesday, Phil “MrSweets28” Galfond put in some time at the $200/$400 pot-limit Omaha tables and managed a $240,000 score. He went on to add an additional $170,000 to that total to become the second biggest winner of the week with $410,235, proving that his decision to relocate to Canada was worthwhile (at least financially).
In one of his matches, Galfond played heads up against “f2fish” and became involved in a sizable pot. In the hand, Galfond ($46,196) was on the button and put in a raise to $1,200, and f2fish ($41,186) three-bet to $3,600. Not only did Galfond make that call, he followed it up by calling f2fish’s $5,398 bet on the flop. When the appeared on the turn, f2fish fired out a pot-sized bet of $17,994, Galfond raised, and f2fish called off his remaining $14,194. After the peeled off on the river, the cards were turned up.
F2fish had flopped top pair, but it was no good against the set of Galfond, sending the $82,372 pot to MrSweets28!
In another of Galfond’s notable hands, he was playing five handed at the same stakes. Action folded to David “Deldar182” Eldar ($18,395) on the button and he raised to $880 and Ilari “Ilari FIN” Sahamies ($65,170) and Galfond ($40,000) both called from the blinds. When the flop came down , action checked to Eldar and he bet a modest $1,677, which both his opponents called.
Again action checked to Eldar on the turn, and Sahamies made the call; however, this time Galfond woke up with a check-raise to $32,714. Eldar called off for a little under $10,000, Sahamies raised to $65,428, and Galfond called off his remaining $4,729. When the was put out on the river, action was complete and the cards were turned up.
When the money went in, there was a plethora of flush draws among the three players, but the river failed to complete any of them; instead, it was Galfond's two pair that held allowing him to rake in the $104,657 pot.
Viktor “Isildur1” Blom Becomes the Week’s Biggest Winner
With the high-stakes PLO games going strong, it was no surprise to see Viktor “Isildur1” Blom find his way to PokerStars on Tuesday and Wednesday to get in on the action. Surprisingly, Blom didn't play the $100/$200 nor $200/$400 tables, instead opting for the $25/$50 and $50/$100 games. It proved to be a wise decision because he ended up winning $382,000 in just 2,000 hands against various opponents.
One of those opponents was Ben “Sauce123” Sulsky, who Blom dismantled in 1,100 hands over two and a half hours to win $137,000. In their biggest hand, Blom ($32,598) raised to $150 from the button only to have Sulsky ($27,047) exercise his option in the big blind by making it $450 to go. Blom responded with a four-bet to $1,350, Sulsky five-bet to $4,050, and Blom called, leading to the flop.
Sulsky wasted little time in leading out for $3,450, Blom raised to $11,200, Sulsky moved all-in for $22,997, and Blom called the additional $11,797.
Sulsky held a pair of kings, but it was far behind Blom's flopped straight. Neither the turn nor the river changed a thing, and Blom took down the $54,094 pot.
Hours later, Blom was back in action, this time squaring off against Rui “PepperoniF” Cao at $50/$100 PLO. It took 80 minutes and 800 hands for the Swede to relieve Cao of $115,000, with most of it coming in their biggest hand. It began when Cao ($45,968) raised to $300 on the button, Blom three-bet to $900 from the big blind, Cao called, and the flop fell . The ever-aggressive Blom led out for $1,300, but was quickly raised to $3,800 by Cao. From there, Blom three-bet to $13,199.50, Cao four-bet $45,198, and Blom called off for $22,340.50 more.
Cao had flopped top two pair with a flush redraw, while Blom held top set. Cao was looking for a diamond, but didn't find it since the hit the turn, followed by the river. Blom took in the $76,680 pot.
As if things couldn’t get any better, Blom went on to battle Ilari “Ilari FIN” Sahamies and secured another $130,000. While their encounter was brief, they still managed some decent pots. In their biggest, Blom ($84,525.50) raised to $300 on the button, and Sahamies ($41,298) three-bet to $900 from the big blind. While that action was fairly standard, it did not stop there because Blom four-bet to $2,700 and Sahamies five-bet $8,100. Finally Blom called, bringing about the flop.
Blom proceeded to call Sahamies’ $16,199.50 bet, the hit the turn, and Sahamies shipped his remaining $16,998.50. Blom made the call and the was run out on the river. Sahamies rolled over for a pair of jacks, which was no good against Blom's rivered trips with . Just like that, Blom raked in the $82,596 pot.
Did Cates Sell his Full Tilt Poker Balance?
Remember awhile back when Mike “The Mouth” Matusow claimed that Daniel “jungleman12” Cates had around $6 million locked up on Full Tilt Poker? Well now rumors are circulating that Cates may have sold his balance, with Tom “durrrr” Dwan’s name being brought up in the same breath.
The information was first presented in the TwoPlusTwo forums when Danny “d2themfi” Isaacson posted the following:
"When we had dinner with Daniel "jungleman12" Cates and Haseeb "INTERNETPOKERS" Qureshi in Austin in late April right after Black Friday, Cates said that he had sold his Full Tilt Poker account balance (I believe for 85 percent but I can't remember).
“We then asked him if he sold it to Tom "durrrr" Dwan, and his response was (paraphrasing) "Someone like that," and we left it at that.”
Whether or not this rumor proves to be true remains to be seen; however, the forums have been known to break a big story or two in the past (think the UltimateBet & Portuguese Prodigy cheating scandals).
Who's Up? Who's Down?
Week’s biggest winners (8/2-8/18): Viktor “Isildur1” Blom (+$482,065), Phil “MrSweets28” Galfond (+$410,235), Ilari “Ilari FIN” Sahamies (+$315,470), 1-ronnyr3 ($305,883), Andreas “Skjervøy” Torbergsen (+$221,427)
Week’s biggest losers: Davin “mTw-DaviN” Georgi (-$423,650), Ben “Sauce123” Sulsky (-$346,023), f2fish (-$315,972), moirhums (-$248,150), Gavin “gavz101” Cochrane (-$137,369), Rui "PepperoniF" Cao ($-104,684), Alexey “LuckyGump” Makarov (-$102,271)
Year-to-date winners: *Gus Hansen (+$3,941,000), *Daniel “jungleman12” Cates (+$1,952,000), *Alexey “NoPasaran” Makarov (+$1,875,000), Gavin “gavz101” Cochrane (+$1,581,000), *Matt Hawrilenko (+$1,440,000), Andreas “Skjervøy” Torbergsen ($1,418,000), *bixiu (+$1,406,000), Rui "PepperoniF" Cao (+$1,366,000), *Phil Ivey (+$1,336,000)
Year-to-date losers: *Tom “durrrr” Dwan (-$2,474,000), *Eugene “fishosaurusREX” Yanayt (-$1,399,000), *kagome kagome (-$1,377,000), *cadillac1944 (-$1,336,000), *Esvedra (-$1,182,000), *UarePileous (-$837,000)
Biggest weekly winners/losers all on PokerStars
*Reflects Full Tilt Poker profit/loss
*data obtained from HighStakesDB.com