That didn’t last long

Phil Galfond is now four-for-four in his “Galfond Challenges” after his latest opponent, Brandon Adams, conceded the match on Monday to the RunItOnce poker room founder. Galfond was $270,000 ahead – he keeps that money – and won a $100,000 from Adams.

The plan was to play 10,000 hands of $100/$200 Pot-Limit Omaha on As it is a cash game, like all of the Galfond Challenge matches, any profits made are kept. Galfond also risked $400,000 to Adams’ $100,000 in the side bet. The two had completed less than a third of the total scheduled hands.

First challenge scrapped

Galfond and Adams actually embarked upon a separate challenge before this one, but a mild controversy caused them to ditch the entire thing and start over.

It was $100/$200 Pot-Limit Omaha just like the one that just ended, with starting stacks of $20,000. But instead of online, they went heads-up live at Resorts World Las Vegas. Additionally, instead of setting a hands limit, they went for a time limit, planning on playing for 40 hours over the course of five days.

It was the time limit format that caused a problem, though. If one were to think about any possible issues that could arise from such a format, one would naturally surmise that the player in the lead would have an incentive to take as much time as possible for each decision, while the player behind would want to act as quickly as possible. It’s like running out the clock in football.

And that was the problem. With 15.5 hours remaining in the match and down by $48,000, Adams accused Galfond of stalling. They are both regarded as nice guys and Adams said the match was “civil,” but it was an argument, nonetheless. The poker wasn’t streamed since it was live, but Adams did bring a camera to record the match, telling Galfond that they could easily see who was correct by checking the tape (see, a “tape” was a recording medium…never mind).

Eventually, they agreed to play 285 more hands, a number determined by mediators Isaac Haxton and Max Silver, based on an estimate of how many hands they could conceivably play in the time remaining.

But at the end of the day, neither was happy with the new setup, so they decided to quit and start with a new online challenge. Adams tweeted that he was down by about $16,500 with 236 hands remaining, saying that both felt, “The end stage was boring and tournament-like.”

Galfond still kept what he had already won, but they tossed the side bet.

Up next for Galfond is a match against Dan “Jungleman” Cates, though they have not hammered out the details of the challenge. Cates had some choice (read: tongue-in-cheek) words for Galfond during a recent podcast with Adams (NSFW):

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