The second weekend of the 2016 Spring Championship of Online Poker saw another big Sunday on the schedule. All the Sunday majors were boosted up along with a handful of special events including the 8-Max, Deep Payouts Event #26. The $1,050 buy-in version drew some of the best players in the game and it was ekziter beating them all to add a SCOOP title to his previous WCOOP win.
The high buy-in tournament attracted 911 players to triple up the $300,000 guaranteed prize pool. They put $911,000 up for grabs, paying the last 159 players earning a piece and the last two players set to take home a six-digit score with $143,000 up top for the winner.
The tournament paused action after Level 20 with 49 players returning to play down to a champion on Day 2. ZeelandBoy was the leader coming back with WCOOP champ ekziter not far behind in second position. Adi Agarwal was the only member of Team PokerStars to book a ticket to the second day but his third place stack only translated to a 30th place finish.
As one might expect with a big buy-in field like this, the final table lineup was full of talented folk including the unexpected combo of two WCOOP Badugi champions in Stephen “stevie444” Chidwick and ekziter. The eight players had a combined nine total career COOP titles with Chidwick the most recent after he captured the $215 Omaha SCOOP event a few days ago.
Seat 1: Stephen “stevie444” Chidwick (677,116 in chips)
Seat 2: tobi123456 (981,345 in chips)
Seat 3: Andreas “mrAndreeew” Berggren (328,955 in chips)
Seat 4: ekziter (1,293,500 in chips)
Seat 5: Zack “ZackAttak13” Korik (782,547 in chips)
Seat 6: Gratitdude (1,151,980 in chips)
Seat 7: ThoNapalm (1,318,452 in chips)
Seat 8: Daniel “ShippityShip” Nielson (2,576,105 in chips)
Blinds: 10K/20K with 2K Ante
Zackattak13 falls short in marathon, eliminated in 8th
The eight stellar players hit the final table and no one was willing to give in with some big money awaiting the higher spots. They battled it out for 90-minutes before anyone was at risk of going out.
Double COOPr Zack “ZackAttak13” Korik saw his stack crawl lower until he found a small pair in the small blind. tobi123456 open-shoved his 585K stack from late position and Korik called with the smaller stack.
tobi123456 was ahead with 7♠7♣ against 6♠6♦ and Korik never improved as the board ran out K♠9♣2♣J♣9♥. Korik already has one SCOOP title from his 2012 Ante Up win plus another TCOOP PLO Heads-Up victory from January, but time ran out on his chance for a third COOP win.
The elimination of Korik seemed to loosen things up at the final table and things got a little more rammy after he left the tournament. Gratitdude was the next in line to sit at the bottom of the chip counts and moved all-in after ekziter opened from early position.
ekziter called the bet but was behind with A♣8♦ against Gratitdude’s A♥Q♠, right up until the K♣J♥8♣ flop. Gratitdude was staring a bad beat in the face and was sent out in 7th place after the 7♠ turn and 3♣ river.
ThoNapalm can’t catch fire, eliminated in 6th
Five hands after Gratitdude was sent out, ThoNapalm found a spot to get his chips involved but his big face cards turned into a race. He open-shoved for 719,336 from the cut-off then watched as ShippityShip moved all-in over the top from the button for a bigger stack.
The blinds released their hands and ThoNapalm was flipping a virtual coin with his K♣J♣ up against 10♦10♣. He picked up a backdoor flush/straight draw on the Q♣5♠5♥ flop but did not improve on the 8♠ turn or A♦ river to go out in 6th place. Another fine run for the Croatian after his big $103,000 cash in the SCOOP Super Tuesday Special Edition last week and final table appearance in SCOOP Event #1-H.
Chidwick denied another SCOOP, eliminated in 5th
Stephen “stevie444” Chidwick earned his second SCOOP title earlier in the series with a few other final table shots along the way. This title would have been a nice addition but he was short-stacked for much of the final table without a successful comeback in his future.
He shoved his last 376,684 from the cutoff and tobi123456 moved all-in for his (slightly) bigger stack from the button to get heads-up. Chidwick was at risk with K♣Q♦ against A♠9♦ and hit the flop, but tobi123456 smacked the A♣K♦5♦ board harder.
The 10♠ turn and 7♥ river were no help for the three-time COOP champion and Chidwick was knocked out in 5th place for $33,968.
Even with the added chips from his knockout of Chidwick, tobi123456 lasted only three more hands before he was sent packing. This double COOPr’s day ended when he called a shove from Daniel “ShippityShip” Nielson’s with K-Q, a hand that had yet to find success at the final table.
tobi123456 was looking to double with K♠Q♦ against Nielson’s suited triple-gapper 8♦5♦. Things were all fine up to the flop/turn J♠9♠9♣7♣ but the bad news came on the 5♥ river to send tobi123456 out in 4th place. The German holds two big COOP titles, winning the 2015 WCOOP $10,000 High Roller and 2015 SCOOP $2,000 Event #23-H for more than $1,000,000 combined between the two big scores.
Berggren doubles through ekziter
The tournament came close to hitting the heads-up portion in a hurry when 2014 SCOOP Event #34-H champ Andreas “mrAndreeew” Berggren was all-in on the very next hand after tobi123456 was eliminated.
He moved shoved from the button with A♦9♦ and ekziter called with an ace of his own from the small blind. Berggren held the better hand against A♥7♦ and turned a pair as it ran out K♦3♠3♣9♠2♦ to keep him in the game.
Seat 3: Andreas “mrAndreeew” Berggren (1,581,786 in chips)
Seat 4: ekziter (2,596,145 in chips)
Seat 8: Daniel “ShippityShip” Nielson (4,932,069 in chips)
Blinds: 30K/60K with 6K Ante
Berggren extended his time in the tournament with a double up after tobi123456 went out and those three players went in for the long grind. They traded chips for more than an hour as Berggren’s stack slid further back down from his double number.
He was down to 1.15 million and called all-in when Nielsen shoved from the small blind. Berggren was ahead with 4♠4♦ against Q♠6♦ and won the flip on the J♦4♥3♠K♠8♠ board for another double back.
Seat 3: Andreas “mrAndreeew” Berggren (2,305,198 in chips)
Seat 4: ekziter (5,167,519 in chips)
Seat 8: Daniel “ShippityShip” Nielson (1,637,283 in chips)
Blinds: 50K/100K with 10K Ante
Nielson takes a break and then a hike, eliminated in 3rd
Nielson sent a lot of chips over to Berggren, pulled a few of them back with a small double, went on break, then shoved for 1.6 million on the first hand back.
He made the move with A♦2♠ in the small blind and Berggren woke up with A♣Q♦ in the big. Berggren was ahead and had a virtual lock on the hand after the Q♥9♣6♥ flop, then a mortal lock when the turn came 8♣.
A tough way to end his tournament but it was the second big bankroll boost for Nielson in the last 24 hours, he picked up more than $123,000 for a 4th place finish in the $2,100 High Roller the evening before.
Seat 3: mrAndreeew (3,336,016 in chips)
Seat 4: ekziter (5,773,984 in chips)
Blinds: 50K/100K with 10K Ante
ekziter added SCOOP to WCOOP in Event #26-H
The last two players had plenty of success before they went to battle for another trophy. ekziter finished 3rd in the $2,100 High Roller (when the previously mentioned Neilson finished 4th) plus the 2015 WCOOP Badugi title and two Super Tuesday wins. Berggren has two Super Tuesday titles himself and his COOP win came in the 2014 SCOOP $2,100 Progressive Super-Knockout event.
They were both guaranteed at least $100,000 with the champion taking away $143,000. ekziter began the heads-up match with the lead and never gave it up. Berggren was able to stay afloat with a couple small doubles but it was over in 25 minutes.
ekziter was dealt A♦6♥ on the button then went ahead and shipped in his chips. Berggren had less than 1 million remaining and called off with two live cards K♥J♠. Neither player connected with the 10♦8♦2♥5♠8♠ board to end the long tournament with ekziter taking the top prize.
Berggren will have to wait for another chance at his second SCOOP victory, this was a great finish for the Swede after he began the final table with a very short stack. ekziter is the next big SCOOP champion and now one TCOOP championship away from earning Triple COOP honors.
SCOOP-26-H ($1,050 NL Hold’em 8-Max, Deep Payouts) results
Total prize pool: $911,000
Places paid: 159
1. ekziter (Belarus) $143,839.41
2. Andreas “mrAndreeew” Berggren (Sweden) $100,270.20
3. Daniel “ShippityShip” Nielson (Australia) $69,899.20
4. tobi123456 (Germany) $48,727.11
5. Stephen “stevie444” Chidwick (Mexico) $33,968.00
6. ThoNapalm (Croatia) $23,679.25
7. Gratitdude (Estonia) $16,507.04
8. Zack “ZackAttak13” Korik (Canada) $11,507.11