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The Online Railbird Report: Galfond and Cates Lose $1.1 Million Each; Blom Capitalizes

The Online Railbird Report: Galfond and Cates Lose $1.1 Million Each; Blom Capitalizes 0001

In last week’s Online Railbird Report, we reported that Dan "jungleman12" Cates won $1,185,862 and became the year’s biggest winner after Ben "Bttech86" Tollerene opted out of having his long-term results tracked. Cates’ reign on top didn’t last long.

In the last week, Viktor “Isildur1” Blom hit an upswing and went from being down six figures on the year to the top of that leaderboard after winning $1,231,879 in 17,559 hands over 168 sessions on Full Tilt Poker (nearly winning back what he had lost the week before). To put that in perspective, the next biggest winner this week was “Crazy Elior,” who won $289,862 over 4,316 hands spread across 31 sessions over on PokerStars.

Naturally where there is a big winner there is a big loser, or in this week’s case, two of them. The aforementioned Cates lost nearly all he had won the week before (down $1,001,078 in 3,845 hands over 38 sessions to be exact), but even that wasn’t enough to make him the week’s biggest loser. That infamous title went to Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond, who was playing online for the first time all year. Galfond’s debut didn’t go well, and throughout the week he dropped a staggering $1,011,872 in 9,838 hands over 69 sessions.

Others who finished in the red were “samrostan” (-$426,306 in 16 sessions/2,570 hands), “FakeSky” (-$299,325 in 12 sessions/1,028 hands), and Gus Hansen (-$148,181 in 117 sessions/14,481 hands).

The Rise Before the Fall

Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond’s return to the virtual felt actually got off to a good start when he strung together back-to-back wins at the $2,000/$4,000 2-7 triple draw tables. In the second win, which came on Friday, March 14, Galfond finished as the day’s biggest winner with a $193,200 win, $30,000 of which came from the $200/$400 CAP pot-limit Omaha tables. It was a good start for Galfond, but little did he know things would take a turn for the worse.

The Online Railbird Report: Galfond and Cates Lose .1 Million Each; Blom Capitalizes 101
Phil "OMGClayAiken" Galfond

Speaking of Friday action, there was only one six-figure pot. It happened at a $200/$400 no-limit hold’em table and began when “Denoking” ($70,943) opened for $800 on the button and “Rhje” ($93,672.15) three-bet to $3,200 from the big blind. A call was made, the flop fell {9-Spades}{5-Diamonds}{a-Spades} and “Rhje” led out for $3,600. “Denoking” raised to $8,400, “Rhje” called, and the {7-Clubs} turned. “Rhje” ended up check-calling a bet of $14,600 and then moved all in when the {7-Hearts} completed the board on the river. “Denoking” snap-called off for $44,743 with the {6-Clubs}{8-Clubs} for a straight, which was good enough to win the $142,083 pot as “Rhje” could only muster two pair with the {a-Clubs}{k-Clubs}.

Blom Returns; Dismantles Galfond

Viktor “Isildur1” Blom got off to a hot start in 2014 – up $2.1 million at one point – but then he hit a downswing that saw him drop to more than $600,000 in the red. Fortunately for the Swede, that was followed by an upswing last weekend that saw him win $1.6 million, more than half of which came courtesy of Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond.

On Saturday, Blom ended up winning $673,700 playing a combination of 2-7 triple draw and 8-Game. Then, in the early morning hours on Sunday, Blom and Galfond sat down at the $300/$600 pot-limit Omaha tables. Things stayed even keel for the first four hours of what turned out to be a 12-hour match, but then Blom got the ball rolling in the next 150 minutes as he won approximately $600,000. Fortunately for Galfond, at this point at least, he was able to stop the bleeding by winning the biggest pot of the weekend.

In it, Galfond ($120,285.50) opened for $1,800 on the button and then called when Blom ($201,868.50) three-bet to $5,400, which brought about a flop of {3-Diamonds}{j-Clubs}{2-Diamonds}. Blom bet $7,200, Galfond called, and the {7-Spades} hit the turn. Blom bet again, this time $16,800, and Galfond popped it to $75,600. Blom responded by moving all in and Galfond wasted little time in calling off the $32085.50 he had behind.

Galfond: {j-Hearts}{9-Hearts}{7-Hearts}{4-Hearts}
Blom: {a-Spades}{a-Clubs}{k-Diamonds}{q-Diamonds}

Galfond got it in with top two pair, but Blom had a lot of outs with aces and a flush draw. The river was run twice, but neither the {Q-Clubs} on the first run nor {10-Hearts} on the second helped Blom. Ship the $240,571 to Galfond.

Here’s a look at another pot over $200K that went Galfond’s way:

Of course Blom managed to snag a big pot of his own. According to HighStakesDB, Blom’s biggest pot of the match began when Galfond ($133,470) opened for $1,800 and then called when Blom ($107,694.50) three-bet to $5,400. When the flop came down {q-Hearts}{7-Diamonds}{4-Diamonds}, Blom check-called a bet of $6,600 and then both players checked the {a-Hearts} turn. Blom checked for a third time on the {7-Clubs} river, and Galfond took the opportunity to bet $19,500. Blom woke up with a check-raise $82,500 and Galfond quickly called to create a pot worth $189,000. Blom then rolled over the {a-Spades}{a-Clubs}{j-Spades}{10-Spades} for a full house and the win.

Blom proceeded to win another $500,000 over the next 90 minutes, and three hours after that, the Swede logged off as a $937,000 winner on the day, $883,000 of which came courtesy of Galfond.

Heinecker Finishes as Tuesday’s Biggest Winner

The Online Railbird Report: Galfond and Cates Lose .1 Million Each; Blom Capitalizes 102
Niklas “ragen70” Heinecker

Despite finishing as 2013’s biggest online winner, we haven’t heard much from Niklas “ragen70” Heinecker in 2014. That changed on Tuesday when he finished as the day’s biggest winner with a $260,200 profit.

The German was playing 2-7 triple draw, and was up nearly twice that at one point. He did so by playing against the likes of Daniel “jungleman12” Cates, Gus Hansen, “samrostan,” and Viktor “Isildur1” Blom. Of those, Cates and Blom finished as the big losers.

Here are some other newsworthy tidbits as reported by HighStakesDB:

  • Ronny “ronnyr37617” Kaiser won $119,800 after playing $200/$400 CAP PLO for five hours.
  • Ben “Bttech86” Tollerene won $231,000 in 40 minutes at the $500/$1,000 CAP PLO tables, though he finished the day a $187,600 winner having lost $68,000 in just 17 hands earlier in the day.
  • Hac “trex313” Dang won $76,000 playing $200/$400 CAP PLO and $50,000 more from “samrostan” at the $2,000/$4,000 2-7 triple draw tables.

Biggest Winners/Losers (Full Tilt Poker)

Week's Biggest Winners (3/13-3/20): Viktor “Isildur1” Blom (+$1,231,879), “Crazy Elior”* (+$289,862), Hac “trex313” Dang (+$179,075)

Week's Biggest Losers (3/13-3/20): Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond (-$1,011,872), Dan “jungleman12” Cates (-$1,001,078), “samrostan” (-$426,306), “FakeSky” (-$299,325), Gus Hansen (-$148,181)

Year's Biggest Winners: Viktor “Isildur1” Blom (+$1,129,010), Dan "jungleman12" Cates (+$1,102,486), Doug "WCGRider" Polk (+$621,798), "Tight-Man1" (+$516,734), "mikki696" (+$445,049), “Crazy Elior”* (+$406,293), Isaac "luvtheWNBA" Haxton ($257,472)

Year's Biggest Losers: Gus Hansen (-$1,268,319), Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond (-$1,197,094), "samrostan" (-$917,789), Alex "IReadYrSoul" Millar (-$644,735), Patrik "FinddaGrind" Antonius (-$377,090), "tyme2gamb0|111" (-$287,479)

*Denotes PokerStars

Data, hands and replayer obtained from

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