Winning $88,000 Dwan Style

I’ve really developed an admiration for Tom “durrrr” Dwan and Patrik Antonius while writing for I don’t think you can find two more fearless players than these two. Day in and day out, they literally risk hundreds of thousands of dollars on the virtual and brick and mortar felts. Despite the 2009 World Series of Poker (WSOP) taking place, Dwan and Antonius found some time to tango in a 215 hand session. Let’s look at one of the battles.

Dwan had $115,000 to start the hand, while Antonius had just $44,000 to his name. Our typical bet, raise, call action occurred pre-flop, with Dwan making it $1,200, Antonius bumping the action to $3,600, and Dwan calling. The flop came 4-5-7 rainbow and the fireworks began. Antonius led out for $6,000, Dwan made it $17,200, Antonius pushed for just over $40,000, and Dwan called the extra $23,000. The turn and river were the eight of clubs and deuce of diamonds, respectively. When the hands were flipped up, Dwan showed 4-10-7-K for sevens and fours, while Antonius revealed 7-5-8-6 for a flopped straight and scooped the $88,000 pot. sat down with PokerXFactor instructor Chris “Fox” Wallace to dive deep into the hand. Walk us through this hand.

Wallace: Antonius has a way better starting hand than Dwan. That’s why Durrrr just called Antonius’ raise pre-flop. He’s expecting Antonius to have big cards more often than a low rundown, so he most likely puts Antonius on big cards. Dwan raises the continuation bet on the flop and, at that point, considers himself committed with two pair. When Dwan sees Antonius go all-in, he’s not excited, but Antonius could make that play with a pair of kings or queens. It’s also possible that he’s up against 4-5 or 3-6. Dwan is getting 1.5:1 on his money with two pair. He has some indication that Antonius has big cards pre-flop and so could have missed that flop. Overall, Antonius is pretty aggressive with this hand and happens to flop a straight. Is aggression with a hand like 5-6-7-8 in Omaha standard?

Wallace: It’s very dependent on your opponent in heads-up Omaha. If you re-raise and your opponent makes a big 3bet, you put yourself in a tough position. Against a tight player, you’d rather just call and see a flop, but against Durrrr, a re-raise is not unreasonable. Antonius’ play, in this case, is pretty standard. In a full ring Pot Limit Omaha game, this would be questionable. There would be times when it’s acceptable and times when it’s not. Does having a hand like 5-6-7-8 put you at a disadvantage because you hold some of your own outs?

Wallace: You’re taking outs away, but what better straight cards could you hold? Dwan’s hand was probably a 60/40 favorite, but if you look at the way the action plays out, the 5-6-7-8 might be the preferable one to have. Antonius is going to make hands that he can play strong with. With K-10-7-4, there are very few ways to make the nuts.

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