EPT London: What are the chances?

October 03, 2009

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Roll a die, flip a coin, hit a button on a random number generator. It’s ridiculous how little control you have over the outcome. No matter how many times you do it, your odds don’t change. Frankly, this makes us feel better. We rest easy at night because we know the odds. It helps us forget that off chance a meteor will fall from the sky and turn us into human carpaccio.

Poker is no different. When the money goes in, if you’re any kind of player, you know your odds of winning and losing. Looking out across the hardened landscape of EPT London’s Day 1B, we get the sense there are people who could run the following calculation for us.

In a field of more than 700 people spread out over two days, when tables are playing nine or ten-handed, when players are assigned randomly to those tables, what are the chances two pre-chosen people will be seated at the same felt?

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We’ve punched a few numbers in a calculator and while we’re not entirely sure of the math, we have discovered there is a 100% chance Benny Spindler and Alex Gomes will end up at the same table.

Don’t question the math. Don’t question our methods. Just look across the room into the farthest, darkest corner of the tournament. There you will find a what some people would call a statistical anomaly, others would call dumb luck, and others would call downright exciting.

It’s been a mere ten months since both men made storybook runs through the 2009 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. It was there they met for a hand that has been described as everything from a cooler, to sick, to one of the most disgusting things anyone has ever seen.

We’ve written about it at length before, and frankly, the more we write about it, the more it makes us wish we’d taken that job at the meat packing plant when it was offered.

If you dare, watch a replay of it below.

Being odds-lovers as we are, it’s impossible not to recognize how quickly fortunes can change. Gomes went from being a pretty good favorite to a 99-1 dog. Though the young Brazilian carries an almost-constant smile on his face, the memory of this hand no doubt has niggled its way into his brain like some third world diseased worm.

And so today we marvel at the coincidence, the sick twist of fate that has occurred at the beginning of Day 1B.

Gomes and Spindler have not only been seated at the same table. They are seated next to each other. And not only that…just like the 2009 PCA, Spindler sits immediately to Gomes’ left.

Both are playing it slow in the early going, but we’re waiting for fireworks.

What do you think the chances are they can be dealt a replay of of their PCA hand?

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