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The WSOP on ESPN: Agony of Defeat on the Money Bubble, Brunson's Vacation Home & More

Doyle Brunson

On Tuesday night, the 2013 World Series of Poker continued with two brand new episodes of the Main Event on ESPN. Last week's broadcast featured the final stages of Day 3, which included the eliminations of Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth and a few others. You can read the recap of those episodes by clicking here, but in the meantime, here’s my recap from last night’s new episodes.

This week's action picked up at the start of Day 4 with 666 players remaining and the average stack at 286,000. Herewere the top 10 chip counts at the top of the broadcast:

PlacePlayerChip Count
1Maxx Coleman1,071,500
2Joshua Prager993,000
3Max Steinberg975,000
4Jonathan Lane958,500
5Dick Van Luijk940,000
6Vladimir Geshkenbein900,000
7Nick Schwarmann893,000
8Matthew Huey885,500
9Chris Johnson862,000
10Guilherme Garcia853,300

The Agony of Defeat: With 648 players slated to get paid, 18 had to go home empty handed. One of them ended up being the “agony of defeat” guy – Mike McClain. You may remember him from the 2003 WSOP as the man that looked extremely dumbfounded and devastated upon being eliminated.

Mike McClain
Mike McClain

Unfortunately a pic of that exact moment can't be found, but I've scoured the PokerNews photo gallery and found the one to the right, which is similar and how McClain often looks.

In the hand, which took place on the feature table, Dan Hicks opened for 11,000 under the gun with the {k-Clubs}{q-Spades} and Ludovic Lacay called holding the {7-Spades}{7-Hearts}. McClain came along with the {k-Diamonds}{q-Diamonds} and Doyle Brunson looked down at the {q-Hearts}{j-Spades} before calling from the big blind. Two checks saw Lacay bet 26,000, a short-stacked McClain move all in for 114,500 and two folds. Lacay called with the set and had McClain drawing dead after the {8-Spades} paired the board on the turn. The meaningless {5-Diamonds} was put out on the river for good measure, and a defeated McClain exited the feature table area.

Another Blast from the Past: In 2005, Adam Friedman played a hand that was captured by ESPN's cameras. I bring it up because Friedman was featured at an outer table and ESPN showed a flashback. In the hand, Shane Bartholomew had moved all in with {A-Hearts}{8-Hearts} on a board reading {A-Diamonds}{5-Hearts}{10-Hearts}{4-Diamonds}{J-Hearts} and Friedman and was considering the 192,000 bet with the inferior {K-Hearts}{9-Hearts}. Friedman eventually made the call, but collapsed in his seat and buried his head in his arms after discovering he had run into the nuts.

“What a blow to Adam Friedman,” Lon McEachern said on the broadcast. “He is overcome with grief.”

“Friedman’s beating himself up unnecessarily,” Norman Chad chimed in about the clearly emotional Friedman.

You can relive the infamous moment in our Where Are They Now interview with Friedman, but keep in mind he did win a bracelet since then so it’s not like he’s some dolt.

A Long Way from Longworth: That’s the name of Doyle Brunson’s place in Montana, which he frequents while on vacation. Brunson opened up the doors a bit to the property as well as to his family. Have a look:

Breaking Bad: After the elimination of Brazil’s Yuri Dzivielevski, who eliminated Tony Gregg earlier in the tournament, in 350th place, the official money bubble was on.

Breaking Bad's Mike and Farzad Bonyadi
Breaking Bad's Mike and Farzad Bonyadi

Play was hand for hand as the ESPN cameras jumped from table to table trying to catch the bubble hand.

They found it when they stumbled upon a hand in which Nick Schwarmann had moved all in on the river with a board reading {j-Diamonds}{5-Spades}{3-Spades}{10-Spades}{k-Hearts} and three-time bracelet winner Farzad Bonyadi called off his last 128,000. The two players had to wait for action to complete at the other tables and then the cards were turned up. Bonyadi had flopped top pair with the {a-Spades}{j-Clubs}, but it was no good as Schwarmann had rivered Broadway. With that, Bonyadi, who bears a striking resemblance to Mike from Breaking Bad, became the 2013 WSOP bubble boy.

It's also worth noting that Greg Merson became the first defending champ to cash the year after his win since Joe Hachem. Fun fact!

Obrestad’s Happy Place: Back in 2007, Annette Obrestad burst onto the poker seen by winning the WSOP Europe Main Event. Since then she’s been a staple in the poker community, though a lot has changed over the years.

“Thinking back to ’07 when I won, it was really weird for me because I wasn’t used to being in the spotlight at all,” Obrestad told ESPN. “Figuring out like how to deal with that without changing you in a way was very challenging. Now at least I’m at a stage where whatever you throw at me I’m gonna be awfully prepared.”

Another big change for the Norwegian was her shift to a healthy lifestyle, which resulted in her losing 30 lbs. “In the last 15 months or so I’ve started getting more healthy I guess,” Obrestad said. “I was always not very healthy, but it’s just because I didn’t know any better … I’m just in a happy place.”

Mizrachi Grinded Down and Out: Three-time bracelet winner Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi was featured prominently in the Day 3 coverage, but his Main Event run would come to an end on Day 4. It happened when he got his last 41,000 all in preflop with the {k-Clubs}{j-Spades} and was in dire straits against the {a-Hearts}{k-Spades} of Paul Taylor. The {9-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{q-Hearts} flop gave him a gutshot straight draw, but neither the {7-Clubs} turn nor {5-Diamonds} river completed it. Mizrachi stood from his chair, stared forlornly at the table and then made his way to the payout desk in 473rd place to collect $24,480.

Mark "P0ker H0" Kroon
Mark "P0ker H0" Kroon

Former Chip Leader Ousted: Mark “P0ker H0” Kroon actually accomplished something special when he finished both Day 1 and Day 2 as the overall chip leader. Unfortunately for him, it started to fall apart on Day 3 and then came unraveled on Day 4.

“I’m pretty good at this, I just wanted you to know,” Kroon said when he was all in holding the {j-Hearts}{10-Spades} on a {9-Spades}{4-Clubs}{j-Diamonds} against Aditya Agarwal, who had him beat with the {a-Clubs}{j-Clubs}. “I’m actually going to count my chips that I’m doubling up here,” a confident Kroon said. He then asked the dealer for the {10-Hearts}, but his request was not honored as the dealer burned and turned the {3-Clubs}. The {J-Spades} river failed to deliver as well and Kroon clapped his hands together in resignation before taking his leave n 458th place for $24,480.

“It was such a whirlwind tournament you know,” the always talkative Kroon told the cameras. “Being the chip leader the first two days, you know I wouldn’t take anything back. It was just great. 2013 in the books. I’ll be back next year.”

A Legend Falls: On the last hand of the broadcast, Tim Ulrich opened for 16,000 with the {k-Clubs}{10-Diamonds}, Sergei Stazhkov flatted with the {10-Hearts}{10-Clubs} and Doyle Brunson squeezed from the button with a three-bet to 86,000 holding the {k-Diamonds}{10-Spades}. Ulrich folded, Stazhkov moved all in and Brunson said, “Alright, let’s do it,” before calling off for 204,000 total.

“Two of them left,” Brunson said of the remaining kings. Indeed there were, but he’d find neither as the board ran out {7-Hearts}{2-Clubs}{3-Clubs}{9-Hearts}{a-Clubs}. Brunson received a big round of applause from the entire room, waved at the crowd and then left in 409th place for $28063, which was gave him a Main Event cash for a fifth straight decade!

"Even though a legend fell, a legend grew," Lon McEachern said to close out the broadcast.

Tune in Next Week: The WSOP on ESPN will continue every Tuesday through November. You can check out the full schedule by clicking here. Next week’s episodes will feature the continuation of Day 4 of the Main Event. If you happen to miss it, check back right here on PokerNews for a full recap of the action.

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