Volume 31 • Number 17 • May 10, 2000
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2000 Champion


Event #17 Results
$1,500 Buy-in
$1,500 in chips
1. Huck Seed$77,400
2. John Spadavecchia38,700
3. Men Nguyen19,350
4. Mickey Sisskind11,610
5. Tommy Polk9,675
6. Larry Colt7,740
7. Roger Aielli5,810
8. Chris Ferguson3,875
9. George Bofysil2,900
10. Mike Wattel2,900
11. Bonnie Damiano2,900
12. Carl Heller2,900
13. Barbara Samuelson1,935
14. Howard Mann1,935
15. Brian Nadell1,935
16. Carl Heller1,935

Total Prize Pool: $193,500
Number of Entrants: 129

Entries to Date: 3,292
Prize Money to Date: $6,921,500


By Mike Paulle

Sometimes it takes as long as four years for a Seed to germinate and start to sprout. When Huck Seed won the World Championship in 1996, few thought it could possibly be this long before he would win another gold bracelet.

There were 129 entrants in the $1,500 Buy-In, Seven Card Razz for a total prize pool of $193,500. 2 tables were paid, a total of 16 players.

Maybe the reason that Razz isn't a more popular game is because it can break your heart. George Bofysil had the best hand all the way to 7th street when a deuce popped up in his opponent's hand to crack George's made low. The philosophical Bofysil just shrugged and headed for the pay window in 9th.

Coming back Tuesday afternoon, Men 'The Master' Nguyen had a commanding chip lead over a tough field that included three other bracelet winners.

THE FINAL TABLE: 48 mins left of 80. The ante is $2300, bring-in $500, playing $1,500/$3,000
PlayerHometownChip Count
Seat 1 Men NguyenBell Gardens CA$64,100
Seat 2 Huck SeedLas Vegas NV$35,000
Seat 3 Tommy PolkBrookhaven MS$3,700
Seat 4 Mickey SisskindW Bloomfield MI$38,200
Seat 5 John SpadavecchiaN Miami Beach FL$16,500
Seat 6 Larry ColtOviedo FL$6,100
Seat 7 Chris FergusonPacific Palisades CA$11,300
Seat 8 Roger AielliLaguna Miguel CA$18,600

To continue the theme of frustrated Razz players, this time it was Chris 'Jesus' Ferguson who had the best hand destroyed on the river. Chris, who was making his second appearance at this year's WSOP after winning earlier, had a made 8 7 6. Huck Seed called Ferguson all the way down to 7th street drawing to an 8 also. When a 7 arrived for Seed, Huck made an 8 7 4 and Ferguson was the first to leave in 8th place.

This was the first Final Table for Roger Aielli and he came to gamble. Several times Roger raised eyebrows with his seemingly hopeless draws only to muck his hand on 5th or 6th street. No one has enough chips to do that too often. Now the short stack, Aielli had a good hand go back with two late Queens and he finished 7th to Mickey Sisskind's Jack.

It had been "a long time" since Larry Colt got this far in a World Series event and he was on an emotional roller coaster. When Tommy Polk survived his first all-in, Larry looked like the designated deportee. But then Chris Ferguson left. Maybe there was hope "I finally beat Huck Seed after two days!" Larry shouted as he jumped in the air. "Now we can play the game!" Colt had won his all-in hand against Seed and had a few chips for a change. That was the last upper for Larry, all the rest was a downer. Larry shot himself in the foot in a hand with Men Nguyen, calling with an 8. Then Colt got caught in a hand with Mickey Sisskind that emptied his chamber in 6th. Larry couldn't squeeze a baby card out on the river and made an 8 7 to Sisskind's 8 6.

Collecting a few more dead Presidents for moving up three spots with only $3,700 to start is not a bad thing. Tommy Polk finally had to surrender in 5th to Huck Seed's 9 7 when Polk made two pair.

We started with eight bracelets at this table, but Mickey Sisskind was the only player with a Razz bracelet. Sisskind wouldn't get another in 4th primarily because of this hand. Mickey had a 5 4 3 A showing and was being raised by Huck Seed on the river. Obviously this was a bluff. Sisskind needed a deuce he didn't have. Huck had been drawing to a 6 4 and caught the wheel to destroy Sisskind's stack. Mickey went out when Men Nguyen failed to fold an unseen pair and won the hand.

This was Men The Master's 17th Final Table in WSOP history. He may never have lost a bigger starting chip lead. As he said, "This wasn't my day." The pivotal hand came against Huck Seed that cost Nguyen about $30,000 and the chip lead he'd never get back. Check raised on 6th street, Men couldn't call on the river when Seed bet. Either he paired or was on a move the entire hand. In either case, 3rd place was Men's next stop a little later when Seed showed Nguyen a 7 6.

Head up, Seed had a 3-2 chip lead but it turned out to be no contest. Very quickly, John Spadavecchia got into a hand he couldn't get out of. "I had him where I wanted him," John said later. "I had the best hand on 3rd street." John may have gotten a false sense of security by the pair of 2's he saw on Huck board. John continued, "But I got all the high cards and he got all the low cards." Before he finally gave up on the hand, Spadavecchia was down to $7,000. Two hands later it was over as John made a nice high Stud hand, Kings and Jacks with an Ace.

Huck Seed is a formidable poker player. He sits bolt upright like Phil Hellmuth does. And even sitting, they both tower over the table at 6' 7". But what adds malice to Seed is that he hardly ever speaks. He looks like the grim reaper come to release you from your chips. It's hard to believe it's been four years since Huck won the World Championship and harder to believe this is his first gold bracelet since. "Razz is such an interesting game, I wish we played it more than once," Huck said. Perhaps the other players may want it eliminated all together.

Super Satellite Update

Some recent Super Satellite winners of seats into the Championship Final: Mario Esquerra, Tony Van, Vic Kramer, Burt Boutin, Barbara Enright, Norm Ketchum, Julian Gardner, Ted Tasiopoulos, James Brown, Vasilis Lazarou, Fred Brown, Angelo Besainou, Janolan Sjavik, Steven Hohn, Larry Satterwhite, Anna Spinetti, Donald McCarthy, John Spadavecchia, Matt Heintschel, Roger Van Driesen, Tom Healy, Pascal Perrault, Tom Jacobs, Steve Zolotow, Gary Haubelt, David Plastik, Hemish Shah, PC Lee, Johan Storaakers, Mickey Seagle, Lee Markholt, John Bonetti, Greg Muller, Steve Bernier and Dale Brevik.
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