The Biggest TV Pots in History

2 years ago
Biggest TV Pots in History
16:49
10 Oct

(Photo: Poker-king.com)

Televised tournament poker has always been an enjoyable part of my poker ‘fanaticism’, a steady diet of EPT’s and the WSOP schedule every summer keeping me well-fed. But somehow the memories of huge TV cash games have stuck with me much longer, and here I want to share with you three of the most exciting and biggest-ever pots to have made it to our screens.

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Boneta’s bluff comes unstuck

When you wake up with pocket aces, what you really want to see is a straddle followed by two calls in front of you. At an active table, Johnny Chan decided just to flat-call, in the hope that someone would decide to steal the pot somewhere after him.

That someone was Negreanu, who decided to kick it up from his $1600 straddle to over $9k. Erik Boneta decided to come along, as did Phil Laak - and Chan must have been smiling inwardly! Re-raising to $30k got rid of Negreanu, but with the other pair calling he now had aces and a $101,800 pot! No ‘win small, lose big’ with these pocket rockets.

And things got even better. The 2, 5, 6 rainbow flop had missed Boneta completely, while Laak’s pair of 3’s may just have called Chan’s $45k lead out bet, if Boneta hadn’t decided to shove with his complete bluff of KQ spades!

Chan wasted no time in calling – his aces good against almost all of Boneta’s range here – and the amateur was left red-faced and on the wrong end of a $516,400 cash pot, even though they ran it three times - probably the easiest money Johnny Chan has ever won!

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Durrrr’s aces cracked!

Just like in Chan’s hand above, Tom ‘durrrr’ Dwan must have been licking his lips when he peeked at his cards and saw aces, then witnessed a raise and a re-raise before him. A timely 4-bet saw initial raiser Eastgate get out of the way, but fellow poker legend Barry Greenstein decided his J♥ 9♥ was worth a look at the flop, the pot sitting at a comfortable $68,500.

When the flop came…

3♥ J♦ 10♣

…Dwan was unperturbed. Although a better flop for Greenstein’s range than Boneta’s was above, it still wouldn’t prevent Dwan from continuing with a 2/3rds pot bet. Greenstein, however, decided that Dwan could be doing this with almost anything – and essentially committed himself by raising $146k, ‘durrrr’ taking little time in shoving, which Greenstein had to call.

$548,700 in cold hard cash was sitting in the middle, Dwan’s aces ahead of Greenstein’s top pair with Jacks – and then the turn came the 9♠!! Greenstein had just hit two pair and Dwan was left reeling, although he managed a joke about ‘running it three times’ – a reference to Greenstein’s slightly unusual habit of only ever running it once.

When the river missed Dwan, he had that sickly look on his face that only comes from half-a-million bucks going astray!

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Dwan takes Ivey for $1.1million

It would be unfair on poor Tom Dwan if I didn’t include the biggest televised pot in history in this compilation, and not least because it seems Dwan recoup the $1/2 million he just lost to Greenstein and then some! But it’s not the $900k plus pot that Dwan won when cracking Greenstein’s aces – oh no, it’s bigger and even better!

It came from modest beginnings, Ivey’s A♣ 2♦ and Dwan’s 6♥ 7♥ seeing a flop, the pot only $49,500 at the time. The flop, however, made for interesting reading…

J♣ 3♦ 5♣

and Dwan called Ivey’s $35k bet. Now what card might the turn bring which could see these two mighty players getting it all in? That’s right…

4♥

And for Ivey, there was no getting away from his turned wheel – Dwan’s re-raise of his $90k bet leading to an all-in from Phil and instacall with the nuts from Dwan! $1,108,500 all in greenbacks!

Completely sick – just what you would expect for the biggest televised pot of all-time – and featuring the two biggest names in high-stakes TV poker!


Articles 1741

Andrew from Edinburgh, Scotland, is a professional journalist, international-titled chess master, and avid poker player.Read more

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