High Stakes Poker Season 7: Boneta Turns Winner While Brunson & Laak Falter



Season Seven of High Stakes Poker continued on Saturday, May 7, with a familiar lineup. It began as a continuation of the previous week when Phil “OMGClayAiken” Galfond steamrolled the table and Bill Klein ran one of the greatest bluffs in High Stakes Poker history. In this installment, Eric Boneta managed to book a win while both Doyle Brunson and Phil Laak had trouble gaining any traction.

Seat Player
Seat 1 Johnny Chan
Seat 2 Phil Galfond
Seat 3 Antonio Esfandiari
Seat 4 Eric Boneta
Seat 5 Robert Croak
Seat 6 Bill Klein
Seat 7 Doyle Brunson
Seat 8 Phil Laak

Chan Not the Player to Watch: In the first hand of the episode, Johnny Chan called $800 with {K-Hearts}{Q-Diamonds} only to have Eric “Rolex” Boneta raise it to $4,000 with {A-Clubs}{Q-Spades} on the button. Doyle Brunson came along with {7-Spades}{7-Diamonds} while Chan made the call, as well. Everyone proceeded to check the {10-Diamonds}{4-Hearts}{8-Diamonds} flop, leading to the {Q-Hearts} turn. Action checked to Boneta, who promptly fired $12,000. Chan, who had a pair of queens with a worse kicker, called and the {A-Spades} was put out on the river. Chan checked, Boneta bet $19,000, and Chan quickly folded. Ship the $56,200 pot to Boneta.

“That’s how Rolex does it,” Phil Laak commented from across the table.

Semi-Bluff from Brunson: With a $1,600 straddle on, four players saw a flop of {2-Spades}{K-Diamonds}{A-Clubs} and action checked to Doyle Brunson. He bet $4,500 with his {7-Spades}{6-Spades} and received a lone call in the form of Eric Boneta and his {A-Hearts}{4-Hearts}. With $16,200 in the pot, the dealer burned and turned the {Q-Spades}, giving Brunson a flush draw. Boneta checked, Brunson kept the pressure on with a $16,000 bet, and Boneta flashed his ace before conceding the hand.

“Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee,” Antonio Esfandiari celebrated as Brunson raked in the pot.

“I never have it,” Brunson said with a sly grin.

The Price is Not Right: Doyle Brunson opened for $3,300 with {K-Diamonds}{Q-Spades} and received a call from Phil Galfond, who held {J-Diamonds}{8-Diamonds}. The {K-Clubs}{A-Diamonds}{10-Diamonds} flop gave each a little piece, but it was Bunson check-calling Galfond’s bet of $4,500. The {2-Diamonds} turn was an interesting card as it gave Galfond his flush, but also provided Brunson with the nut-flush draw. The latter checked, Galfond bet $8,000, Brunson check-raised to $38,000, and Galfond simply moved all-in for $80,500.

“Did you really?” Brunson quipped. “Diamonds really are a girl’s best friend.” Clearly frustrated he didn’t take a cheap river card, Brunson gave up on the $136,100 pot by tossing his cards in the muck.

High Stakes Legends: This week’s segment, which introduces viewers to ”the pioneers of poker,” focused on Terry Rogers, who is largely credited with bringing no-limit hold’em to Europe. Hailing from Ireland, Rogers had close ties to Noel Furlong, who won the 1999 World Series of Poker Main Event, the same year Rogers died.

Checking the Turn: Doyle Brunson looked down at {3-Diamonds}{4-Diamonds} and limped for $800. While Johnny Chan did the same with {K-Hearts}{J-Diamonds}, it was Antonio Esfandiari who decided to spoil the party with a raise to $5,000 holding the paltry {J-Hearts}{7-Clubs}. Eric Boneta came along with {A-Hearts}{3-Hearts}, Brunson called, and Chan got out of the way. The {8-Hearts}{10-Hearts}{7-Diamonds} flop was kind to Esfandiari, giving him a pair and the lead; however, Boneta picked up the nut-flush draw.

Esfandiari bet $12,800, Boneta called, Brunson folded, and the {7-Hearts} hit the turn. Both players improved, but surprisingly both checked, leading to the {Q-Diamonds} on the river. Esfandiari didn’t take long to bet $31,900, Boneta raised to $71,900, and “The Magician” reluctantly folded after a moment’s thought. Just like that, the “Rolex” took down a pot worth $147,200.

Brunson Moves All-in with Just an Ace: Eric Boneta raised to $2,500 from the cutoff and received calls from Robert Croak and Bill Klein. When action was on Doyle Brunson in the big blind, he looked down at one card, the {A-Spades}, and moved all-in for his last $28,200. Boneta made the call as the rest of the field got out of the way.

Boneta: {A-Clubs}{9-Hearts}
Brunson: {A-Spades}{A-Diamonds}

That’s right, Brunson had moved all-in after looking at just one ace, and the other card paired him to make the best hand in poker. “I’ve never seen anyone suck out before the flop,” host Norm MacDonald chimed in. Indeed, the board ran out {J-Hearts}{3-Hearts}{7-Diamonds}{K-Spades}{7-Hearts} and Brunson doubled to $62,200.

Flopping a Set: Phil Galfond opened the pot for $3,000 with {A-Clubs}{Q-Spades} and received calls from Antonio Esfandiari, Eric Boneta, and Bill Klein. It was four-way action to the {3-Clubs}{6-Clubs}{J-Clubs} flop, which Galfond promptly checked. Esfandiari followed suit with a check of his own, and Boneta, who held top set with the {J-Spades}{J-Diamonds}, bet $17,500. Galfond was the only player to make the call as the {4-Diamonds} peeled off on the turn. Again Galfond checked, Boneta bet $50,000, and “OMGClayAiken” tank folded his nut-flush draw.

“I guess Phil Galfond knows a thing or two about Rolexes,” Norm MacDonald joked. “Phil Galfond makes another good decision.”

Seat Player Stack Size Win/Loss
Seat 1 Johnny Chan $251,600 +$51,600
Seat 2 Phil Galfond $287,300 +$87,300
Seat 3 Antonio Esfandiari $316,700 -$83,300
Seat 4 Eric Boneta $249,900 -$49,900
Seat 5 Robert Croak $160,200 -$39,800
Seat 6 Bill Klein $588,700 +$88,700
Seat 7 Doyle Brunson $78,500 -$121,500
Seat 8 Phil Laak $167,100 -$32,900

Make sure to check out next week’s episode over on the Game Show Network. Check your local listings for the airtime in your area.

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Ante Up Magazine

Ante Up Magazine