In a rather bizarre scene at the final table of the 2009 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event final table, Darvin Moon sent crowd favorites Phil Ivey and Steve Begleiter packing, three-outing both.
In the first hand back from a break that ended around Midnight PT, Ivey shoved all-in pre-flop with A-K and Moon made the call with A-Q. Ivey, who had become aggressive in the moments leading up to the day’s dinner break, watched as the door card came a queen, sending Moon out in front in the hand for good. Ivey ate an apple throughout his final hand, with at least half of the fans in attendance chanting “Iv-ey, Iv-ey” in unison.
The turn came a three, leading Ivey to take another bite of his apple, and the Full Tilt Poker pro was sent into the Las Vegas night after the river was a five. He received a standing ovation for his 12 hours’ worth of work and $1.4 million in earnings.
As has been customary, eliminated players greet the media in the orchestra level lobby in front of a red Jack Link’s Beef Jerky WSOP backdrop. Prior to Ivey’s elimination, Kevin Schaffel and James Akenhead both made their way to the waiting media, answering a barrage of questions. Ivey, however, did not show up. Instead, Harrah’s Communications Director Seth Palansky explained that WSOP Media Director Nolan Dalla had managed to procure several quotes, which would be distributed at the end of the night, and that Ivey would not come out.
Full Tilt Poker blogger Michael Craig told Poker News Daily, “As impressed as everybody is with Phil Ivey, his play today exceeded expectations. He was phenomenal, he played like a champion, and only busted because he got very unlucky.” A Full Tilt Poker representative explained why Ivey did not want to be interviewed following his ousting: “If you just lost that million, would you?”
Shortly thereafter, Begleiter was sent packing after Moon once again hit a three-outer. This time, Begleiter was all-in pre-flop with pocket queens against Moon’s A-Q. The board blanked out until the river, when an ace hit, sending Begleiter home in sixth place. In a span of about 30 minutes, Moon had three-outed two Full Tilt Poker pros.
Unlike Ivey, Begleiter came to speak to the media and explained, “I’m a little numb obviously. I would have liked to win that pot. I got my money in really good and I was one card away from being right back in the thick of it. I played some hands well tonight. I played some hands poorly tonight. I really thought that [last] hand was mine, but it just wasn’t meant to be.”
Begleiter spoke on Moon’s recent pair of eliminations, which were reminiscent of his play down the stretch in July’s Main Event play: “Darvin’s a good player. There are no bad players out there. He’s figured out how to hold onto most of his chips and he’s got mine now. He’s going to be a factor. It’s going to be really interesting.”
Begleiter took home $1.6 million for his efforts. Here’s how the final table stacks up headed into five-handed play:
1. Darvin Moon – 63,925,000
2. Eric Buchman – 53,250,000
3. Antoine Saout – 51,725,000
4. Jeff Shulman – 15,525,000
5. Joe Cada – 10,350,000
According to ESPN officials, Moon was spotted playing Texas Hold’em Bonus at the Rio during the dinner break, winning about $1,000. Begleiter and Moon played the game early this morning prior to the resumption of the Main Event. Moon now sits alone on the left side of the table, while Buchman, Saout, Shulman, and Cada are seated next to each other to the dealer’s right.
Although the balcony is empty at the Penn and Teller Theater, the orchestra section remains full headed into the 1:00am hour.