It’s tough to win a half-million dollar pot and still lose $400,000 for the session, but that’s exactly what Patrik Antonius managed to do in the latest installment of the Tom Dwan Million Dollar Challenge. Let’s take a look at this amazing feat.
Both Antonius and Dwan started the hand with about $250,000. Pre-flop, we saw our standard raises, with Antonius making it $1,200, Dwan raising to $3,600, Antonius pumping the price of poker up to $6,000, Dwan raising to $18,000, and Antonius signaling the white flag and calling. The flop came 6-6-Q. Dwan checked-raised Antonius for $47,100 and Antonius just called. The turn came a nine. Dwan bet $54,600, Antonius pushed for $173,000, and Dwan called, turning over 7-9-8-6 for a full house. However, Antonius revealed Q-9-Q-K for a higher full house. A four on the river didn’t change the status quo and Antonius scooped the $477,000 pot.
DurrrrChallenge.com sat down with PokerXFactor instructor and Omaha aficionado Chris “Fox” Wallace to learn more.
DurrrrChallenge.com: This is the largest pot by far we’ve seen during the Million Dollar Challenge. Walk us through it.
Wallace: They’re so deep here. The effective stack is over 500 big blinds. You can 4bet pre-flop just messing around, so I don’t think the pre-flop betting gives much of anything away about your hand. Once the flop comes, the hand is decided and neither player is going anywhere. The only hand Durrrr is afraid of is a pair of queens. When he makes a full house on the turn, he’s not worried about it at all. Antonius only calls the final bet on the flop because he doesn’t want to scare Durrrr away. He knows he’ll get it all-in if he doesn’t get too crafty.
DurrrrChallenge.com: If the turn didn’t fill Dwan’s full house, would this hand have played out differently?
Wallace: It probably doesn’t matter. If the turn were a spade, putting three of that suit out there, Dwan might be check-calling. I just think the pot’s too big after the flop. It’s all getting in anyway. You can’t have $120,000 in there and then fold to another $120,000 bet with trips heads-up. You’re getting 2:1 and you have to be sure your opponent has a better full house in order to fold.
DurrrrChallenge.com: Explain the mindset of losing a $500,000 pot.
Wallace: These guys have no respect for money at all and just don’t care. I could lose a huge pot in a tournament to go from first place to last and it wouldn’t bother me. These guys feel the same way in cash games. They’re treating real money like tournament chips.
In another hand during the session, Antonius held a stack of $199,000, while Durrrr had $535,000 behind him. Pre-flop, Antonius raised to $1,200, Dwan bumped it to $3,600, and Antonius called. The flop came 5-3-5. Dwan bet out for $4,800 and Antonius called. The turn was a deuce and Dwan check-called a bet of $9,200. After a seven on the river, Dwan check-raised to $75,100 and Antonius called. Dwan flipped up 10-5-7-Q for a full house, while Antonius mucked. Neither player was all-in.
DurrrrChallenge.com: Dwan made his boat on the river. Talk about the hand.
Wallace: Dwan is re-raising with 10-5-7-Q pre-flop. That’s not a good Omaha hand at all. In fact, it’s way below average. Antonius is not going to be surprised with Durrrr having a five. I’m guessing that Antonius had a straight or a five. He is betting all the way and just calls at the end, so my guess is that he has a straight with 4-6 because he gets feisty on the turn and stays that way on the river. Antonius has to have a hand in order to call that raise at the end.
DurrrrChallenge.com: You thought Dwan was being recklessly aggressive during earlier stages of the Challenge. Do you still feel that way?
Wallace: Given the size of the pots, the swings are going to be this large. I thought Durrrr was issuing a smart challenge because his opponents weren’t used to four-tabling heads-up. Then, I started thinking that Durrrr was playing too crazy, but he’s making the money back. However, I still think they’re overplaying their hands.