Tonight, we get the $1,000 No Limit Hold ‘Em final table and the $2,000 Pot Limit Omaha slot hoki final table. The NLHE event shouldn’t be anything special, although I’m hoping for more than a series of all-in bets. The Omaha event, on the other hand, is highly anticipated!

As usual, before reading on, I suggest you go here and listen to “Save a Horse, Ride a Cowboy.” That’ll get you fired up!

8:00 pm CT

(Clemens has already giving up 2 dingers. 6-0 AL)

The players for the 1K NLHE are: Daniel Negreanu, Mike Matusow, John Juanda, Paul Phillips, Lee Markholt, Ram Vaswani, Gerry Drehobl and Reggie Cardiel.

8:01 pm CT

Negreanu comes in with 56s, Markholt comes all in with AQo, followed by Vaswani’s all in with Cowboys. Negreanu naturally folds. Vaswani flops a boat and turns quads. Ouch. Markholt is out in 8th.

8:03 pm CT

We’re learning how to play again.

8:04 pm CT

Juanda gets A9o and makes a bet. Negreanu gets one of my favorite hands, JTs, and he calls. Everyone else gets out. The flop is T-J-4. Negreanu checks to Juanda who makes a stab at it. Negreanu comes way over the top and Juanda has to fold. Nice play.

8:05 pm CT

First commercial break… checking in on the All Star game, and the NL has a runner on second with Scott Rolen at the plate and two outs. Rolen gets plunked and Sosa comes up with 2 on and 2 out. Sosa shatters his bat, but singles knocking in one.

8:09 pm CT

We’re back. About $366,000 will go to the winner. Negreanu is the chip leader and gets pocket 10’s (“Long Distance?”). Vaswani comes all-in behind him with pocket 3’s (“Crabs”). Negreanu calls and the crabs are in trouble. The flop is 2-2-8. The turn is another 8 and the river is a 6. Vaswani is out in 7th.

8:11 pm CT

It’s time to meet the Negreanu family. His mom packs a lot of food apparently. (The NL only got that one run, 6-1 AL after one inning.) And apparently Negreanu’s friends only win because his mom is cooking.

8:12 pm CT

Phillips gets pocket 7’s (“Sunset Strip”?) and he moves all-in. It’s a shame he didn’t have pocket 6’s for Phillips 66, right!?! Matusow is considering a call. We don’t know his cards yet. He calls with AJs. Everyone else folds. It’s a pocket pair vs. sutied overcards. The Flop is Q-6-T, the turn is a 9 for the diamond draw and a straght draw. The river is a 5… no help for Matusow despite about 27 outs. Poker blogger Paul Phillips doubles up. Mike and Paul chat it up. Definitely better characters at this table than last week!

8:14 pm CT

Second commercial break… the AL hasn’t scored again, but The Rocket is on the bench. Big Ben Sheets is tossing out there now, and Randy Johnson is in the bullpen. AL’s got a runner on now with one out.

8:16 pm CT

We’re glancing at the other tables now as they play Omaha and Moneymaker is apparently trying his luck at this game.

8:17 pm CT

Cardiel gets AJo and makes a bet. Juanda has 85s, and decides to play it. Hmmm… interesting. In fact, he moves all-in. Why? Does he have a read? Looks like he’s trying to push around an amatuer. It doesn’t work. Cardiel calls. The flop is 9-3-6, two diamonds and Juanda has a flush and straight draw. The turn is another 9, no help. The river is an 8 and Juanda amazingly doubles up. Lucky bastard, right?

8:20 pm CT

Matusow looks at A4o. He moves all in. The “Mouth” makes a play, he’s pretty short-stacked. Juanda has AK, and you gotta play Big Slick. He calls. Juanda is a huge favorite. The flop is 4-5-T, and Matusow takes the lead. It’s getting crazy at this table! The turn is a 3. The river is a T and Matusow doubles up. I guess it’s only fair after Juanda’s last play. Matusow is living it up now… what a character. Negreanu is giving it back.

8:22 pm CT

It’s time to learn a little more about the “Mouth.” He tells us he loves to talk. And then he proves it. Quite a few players have rolled their eyes. That’s fun though, I love it. At least he respects the game… unlike Vogl, last week’s winner. Matusow promises no “blow ups.”

8:23 pm CT

Third commercial break and the NL hasn’t made up any ground. Still 6-1 AL and Mulder seems to be doing just fine. Damn that Mulder is good, isn’t he? Ooooh, it’s time for Barry Larkin’s swan song. Was he good enough to warrant a “final season pity appearance?” Maybe his last seven injured seasons have soured me on him.

8:25 pm CT

Back to poker. We’ve still got 6 players. Cardiel (an Ultimate Fighter) bets with “Long Distance.” Negreanu looks down at QJo, and as the small blind, figures he’ll take a stab at the flop. It comes Q-Q-3. Negreanu is one lucky guy, huh? Negreanu slow plays with his check, and Cardiel bets big, figuring there’s no Q over there. Negreanu calls, and Cardiel wonders if Negreanu has the Q. The turn is a 5 and Negreanu checks and Cardiel bets again. Now Negreanu is fooling around with the amatuer and he smooth calls. The river is a 7. Negreanu goes all-in. More great play. Cardiel moves all in, showing he’s an amatuer. He’s out in 6th. Negreanu is a huge chip leader.

8:28 pm CT

Matusow gets KTo and just calls the BB. Juanda gets A8s in the SB and he decides to just call. Phillips in the BB looks at K6s and he just checks. Three see a flop of T-7-7 and Phillips gets a flush draw. Matusow bets on his tens. Phillips considers a call. Matusow sings the Jeopardy theme. Phillips calls. The turn is the 4 of hearts and Phillips gets his flush. He bets out 20K and Matusow asks for a chip count. Mike can’t call. He has to know the turn was the flush. Matusow goes all in anyway and knows he’s dead. The river has to be a T or 7, but it’s just a 2 of hearts. The “Mouth” is out in 5th and poker blogger Phillips gets more chips.

8:31 pm CT

Going into the fourth commercial break, Matusow says what we’re all thinking, “I’m not sure what made me do that.” It was a terrible call. Phillips bet guaranteed he had the flush. Why else would he just call after the flop? The Big Unit is on the mound now and the AL has two more runners on base. Looks like the Yankees will have home field in the World Series.

8:34 pm CT

Moneymaker busts out in Omaha long before the final table. What a name he’s made for himself. The biggest in televised poker? It’s a shame guys like Johnny Chan and Eric Seidel aren’t more famous (at least they were in Rounders). Of course, my guy is The Professor.

8:36 pm CT

Four left. Three pros and a fish. Negreanu gets “Long Distance.” It’s a popular hand tonight. Drehobl calls with J-8o. The flop is 2-J-8 and the both check. Drehobl is slow playing. The turn is a 3 and Negreanu bets out. Drehobl is playing this well and calls. Negreanu is shocked. The river is an Ace and Negreanu certainly can’t bet. He just checks. Drehobl bets 50K and Negreanu thinks he’s got him read with Ax suited on a flush draw. He’s wrong, but he’s a loser either way. Negreanu calls knowing it’s a loser, but he wanted information and it cost him a little.

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