It’s difficult to blame her, yet it still stings.
With all of the numerous streaming services we feel forced to subscribe to these days, it might be difficult to commit to another, particularly for such specialized content as poker. Thus, as fantastic as PokerGO’s programming has become, it’s natural that fans of series like High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark can’t stomach another charge to their credit cards, particularly since such shows used to air on network and cable television. Yet this is a different period, and these are the breaks.
The trouble with not subscribing, of course, is that you lose out on some interesting hands. Jennifer Tilly, an actress and poker fan, was the unlucky victim of a cooler on Tuesday night’s episode of High Stakes Poker (Season 10, Episode 7). Coolers make for wonderful TV, but they can also ruin a person’s day if they get the short end of the stick.
Tilly had 2-2 in pre-flop action (there was a straddle on) and bet to $3,000 on the dealer button. Robert Sanchez called with K-9, and Antonio Esfandiari raised the pot to $11,000 with J-J.
The flop was a fast-paced J-9-2. Esfandiari had top set, Tilly had bottom set, and Sanchez had middle pair with a flush draw from the second nut. Esfandiari opened with a $14,000 wager, and both of his opponents called. The T increased Sanchez’s outs by giving him a gut-shot straight draw, but Esfandiari risked $43,000 and Tilly pushed all-in for $115,000. He had a good shot at a large pot, but Sanchez felt it was better to be cautious than sorry and folded.
Tilly received the dreadful news when Esfandiari soon contacted. Bottom set is a monster in a three-way hand (or any hand, really), so even with Esfandiari’s boldness, it was difficult to predict his top set coming. The river was the T, giving both players a full house, but Esfandiari’s beat Tilly’s.
The entire pot was $305,800, serving as a reminder to everybody that the poker gods don’t always care whether you make the correct choice.
Still no where near the show’s largest pot.
Even though the pot was significant, it was just one-quarter the size of the highest pot in High Stakes Poker history. This one sold for $1,227,900 during Season 4. It did, however, have an intriguing twist. After a series of raises, Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté called David Benyamine’s all-in with K-5 on a flop of K-3-5 (Sammy Farha was also involved, but ended up folding). To win, Benyamine needed to strike his flush draw or something runner-runner with his A-8.
After considerable deliberation, Laliberté requested that he automatically win a total of $238,900, the amount of the pot before to the big all-in raises. Benyamine agreed, and that was the end of it.
The other players at the table, looking for some excitement, wanted to rabbit hunt the turn and river, but both Laliberté and Benyamine refused.
Picture courtesy of PokerGO.com