How it came to be that two Full Tilt Poker legends will meet at the same table in 2021; why Phil Ivey’s game is still relevant, and why the $ 25K WPT Heads Up Championship turned the game around for poker streams.
How Ivy and Antonius met at the same table in 2021
“What year is it today?” Announcer Joe Ingram asked at the end of the broadcast after Patrik Antonius beat Sam Greenwood in the $ 25K WPT Championship to give viewers their heads-up dreams.
Ivy and Antonius themselves will not even say how many times and where they saw each other more often: live or online. They both played for Full Tilt Poker at one time and were the two real gods of poker Olympus, playing six and seven-figure pots.
These two also met live dozens, hundreds, if not thousands of times. Ivy and Antonius have filmed High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark. In 2012, the two of them advanced to the 2012 Aussie Millions heads-up, where Ivey won ($ 2M) and Antonius became a runner-up ($ 1.2M).
These two know each other’s game better than they know their own. And now they will battle it out for the WPT Heads Up Championship and the $ 400K grand prize.
How the WPT HU Championship developed for Ivy and Antonius
Who Patrik Antonius defeated on the way to the final:
- 1/16 – Gackt
- 1/8 – Doug Polk
- 1/4 – Stefan “Stefan11222” Burakov
- 1/2 – Sam Greenwood
The draw for Antonius, at first glance, turned out to be a little easier. In the first match, he played against an amateur, multi-instrumentalist Gackt. But then he had to beat Doug Polk, who ate the dog in heads-ups, and Stefan “Stefan11222” Burakov, one of the strongest players in the online cash game. And finally, in the semifinals, I had to beat Sam Greenwood.
Who Phil Ivey beat on the way to the final:
- 1/16 – Manig Loeser
- 1/8 – Anthony Zinno
- 1/4 – Styne (идвик (Stephen Chidwick)
- 1/2 – Chris Kruk
Phil Ivey was drawn by lot to the experts from the world of live tournaments: Manig Leser and Anthony Zinno, each with $ 10M + prize money in live tournaments. And then the tin began. In 1/4, Phil Ivey had to beat Steven Chidwick’s top 6 Hendonmob rankings. And at 1/2 on the draw, he got the coolest participant in this championship – Chris “apotheosis92” Hook, deprived of the tournament life of Victor Malinovsky and Olivier Busquet.
Three hands featuring Phil Ivey from WPT HU Challenge, confirming that he is still the top
The game of representatives of the “old school” in 2021 is skeptical. They say, they don’t use calculators, they don’t play online – they don’t understand anything. But looking at the hands with the participation of Phil Ivey, it becomes obvious: his poker and understanding of the game is still at some transcendental level.
Hand # 1: Three Barrels of K-High No Blockers Bluff
Second match 1/4. The depth is 45 bb for Ivy and 17 bb for Chidwick.
Hand # 2: A No Equity Bluff Against A Pair Of Aces
This is the first hand of the second match 1/4 at a depth of 125 big blinds.
- On preflop Chidwick opened 2.2 big blinds, Ivey 3-bet to 8.75 big blinds, Chidwick 4-bet to 21.35 big blinds, Ivey called. The bank is 42.7 bb.
- On flop TOBUT2 played check-check.
- On type 5 Ivey bet 21.35bb and got called. Bank 85.4BB.
- On river 6 Ivey puts all-in 82.3bb, Stephen Chidwick, after much deliberation, sends UpTb to pass. Phil had 7b 6b.
Hand # 3: Like a Boss Nine-High
This is a semi-final hand. The score is 1-1. Phil has 63 big blinds, Chris Hook has 135 big blinds.
- On preflop Hook opens up to 2.2bb, Ivey 3-bets to 7.35bb, Hook calls. Bank 15 bb.
- On flop 35T Ivey bets half pot to 7.35bb, Hook raises to 16bb and Ivey shoves all-in 57bb. Chris Hook passes pocket Deuces.
Why the $ 25K WPT Heads Up Championship “Turned the Game” and Set a New Standard for Live Poker Events
This heads-up championship originally looked like an ad for a Chinese app with Phil Ivey, Tom Dwan, Brad Owen, and Landon Tice. In fact, it turned out to be top-notch tournament with amazing composition… Only a couple of GG ambassadors (Negreanu, Holz, etc.) and Helmut were missing.
The technical level of the broadcasts was 10/10. No matter how simple and strange it may sound, the organizers of the broadcast managed to display simultaneously the players’ stacks in the blinds and in chips – technologies that are inaccessible to other rooms and broadcasts.
What other know-how did the broadcast organizers find?
More than three commentators in one broadcast. For eight to nine hours of broadcast, pairs of commentators took turns. And this is very cool. For example, someone liked the way Olivier Busquet was sorting out the distribution. Someone likes emotional comments and shouts. “Ay-yay-yay papiiiii” by Joe Ingram.
Technical training for 10/10. For all the days, the stream was interrupted only once. All broadcasts passed without flaw and technical overlaps. Some of the players skated directly from the Cabo studio in Mexico.
Those who did not come to Mexico played with webcams and a microphone, so everyone could be seen and heard. Players commented on the game, exchanged phrases and gave out emotions after the deal.
Pauses between matches were minimal, closed by pre-match interviews of participants, videos from Mexico and unobtrusive advertising for the women’s poker community FLIP.
The final broadcast starts today at 23:00 Moscow time. We’ll update this post as soon as we know the final heads-up results. Subscribe to Pokeroff in Telegram – we are the first to publish the news about poker.