Volume 31 • Number 7 • May 1, 2000
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2000 Champion


Event #7 Results
$1,500 Buy-in
$1,500 in chips
1. Nat Koe$160,950
2. Brent Carter$82,650
3. Danny Dang$41,325
4. Vince Burgio$26,100
5. Eli Balas$19,575
6. Mark Gregorich$15,225
7. Robert Turner$10,875
8. Yong Pak$8,700
9. Mike Matusow$6,960
10. Ben Tang$5,220
11. Cliff Pappas$5,220
12. Marlon Delossantos$5,220
13. Charlie Brahmi$4,350
14. Paul Weiss$4,350
15. Barry Bindelglass$4,350
16. Larry Colt$3,480
17. Ed Galvin$3,480
18. James Douglas$3,480
19. Ansoni Kim$2,610
20. Michael Patti$2,610
21. Shijuro Uchida$2,610
22. Tony Cousineau$2,610
23. John Shipley$2,610
24. Andreas Krause$2,610
25. Bret Sampson$2,610
26. Cong Do$2,610
27. Bill Bertram$2,610

Total Prize Pool: $435,000
Number of Entrants: 290

Entries to Date: 1,657
Prize Money to Date: $2,829,000


By Mike Paulle

With enough all-ins to last a large sleep-away camp the entire summer, reversals of fortunes were the rule not the exception. No one was for sure out of this one until they couldn't be awakened by the camp counselor.

There were 290 entrants in the $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo for a total prize pool of $435,000. 3 tables were paid, a total of 27 players.

The taste was still bitter for Ben Tang, as he was the last one out Saturday night. Coming back on Sunday afternoon, the guys were faced with the prospect of dealing with the chip leader Eli Balas. This was Eli's second chip lead in this year's WSOP. He finished 2nd a few days ago.

THE FINAL TABLE 59 mins left of 80. The blinds are $2,000/$4,000
PlayerHometownChip Count
Seat 1 Eli BalasLas Vegas NV$86,000
Seat 2 Danny DangWhittier CA$56,000
Seat 3 Mike MatusowLas Vegas NV$29,000
Seat 4 Robert TurnerLong Beach CA$21,500
Seat 5 Brent CarterLas Vegas NV$82,500
Seat 6 Mark GregorichLas Vegas NV$41,500
Seat 7 Yong PakBainbridge WA$19,000
Seat 8 Nat KoeBangkok, Thailand$71,500
Seat 9 Vince BurgioWest Hills CA$29,000

Unable to win a pot, Mike Matusow tried a high wrap for his all-in hand. He got a good flop for his A K Q 10. The flop came J 10 3 to give Matusow the nut straight draw. Brent Carter had two Aces so Mike needs help. It didn't come as Matusow went out 9th.

In Omaha having the nuts too early can cost you money. Yong Pak made the nut straight on the turn with his K 10. Eli Balas had both a low and the nut flush draw. The low spade on the river sank Pak's chances in 8th of moving on.

The 'chip burner', Robert Turner was next to try a raise with a high only hand. He got repopped by Mark Gregorich and Turner flat called. Robert called all-in on the flop and had less outs than he thought when the hands were shown. Mark had better spades, the nut low draw and a pair on the flop. When the board paired on the river, Turner was turned out in 7th by Gregorich's Kings and Jacks with an Ace.

What made this day one of reversals was typified by the fortunes of Mark Gregorich and Vince Burgio. With six players left the Card Player columnist Burgio was nearly on the felt. In a stunning reversal, Vince won an unbelievable five scoops in a row to go from the chip basement to the chip penthouse. Most of the chips Vince stacked came from Mark Gregorich. In two huge hands Vince had Aces with three treys on board. Mark couldn't call the river. Then Burgio rivered the nut flush to crack Mark's two pair. It was Brent Carter who hammered the last nail in Mark's coffin, however, with a full house on the river Deuces full of 10's.

It's always a shock when you see Eli Balas without a big stack in front of him. The guy is a chip magnet. But even a magnet's power can be reversed by stronger forces. Suddenly, Eli the stacker became Eli the donator as he couldn't make a hand. Balas raised all-in from his small blind with A A 2 6. Danny Dang called from the big blind with A 5 6 10 suited in Diamonds. Eli was trapped and went out 5th when a third Diamond hit the river.

With four players left, the chips were nearly even when a deal was agreed to. Normally with most of the cash gone, play gets very loose. Not this time, however, as it took over two hours to get Vince Burgio out in 4th. Whoever was short-stacked went on a rush. Even playing $15,000/$30,000 no one would go bust as the split-pot nature of the high-low game kept both players alive each time. The guys seemed to be playing harder for the bracelet than they did for all that money.

It was another hour before Danny Dang gave in for 3rd and mucked his hand when Brent Carter told him he had a full house with Deuces full of 5's.

With a 3-2 chip lead and all the experience in the world, Brent Carter had to be favored over Nat Koe. But playing $20,000/$40,000 is a crapshoot. And it was Brent Carter who rolled a seven out. Carter went all-in with A K 6 2. Nat Koe had A A K 8. When the board paired on the river, there was no low. Koe won this marathon event with Aces up. To complete the reversals of fortunes theme, Koe was a guy who went all-in with his last 12 chips four-handed and went on to take all of them. What an amazing game!

Internet coverage of the 2000 World Series of Poker is brought to you as a service of ConJelCo with the full and active cooperation of Binion's Horseshoe. ©2000 Binion's Horseshoe • some portions © 2000 ConJelCo