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The trend of exciting lineups and themed episodes continue on Season 5 of Poker After Dark with the first edition of the “Hellmuth Bash Cash Game” featuring none other than the ‘Poker Brat’ himself in the middle.
Phil Hellmuth and a talented group of players looking to needle and felt the episode’s namesake are the latest addition to THE VAULT on PokerGo.
Featured in the lineup are two of the best talkers ever featured on poker television with PhilLaak and Antonio Esfandiari seated on the thorny right-hand side of Hellmuth.
If you think you’ve seen Hellmuth get tilted before, this episode brings a whole new element to the game that sees everyone buy-in for at least $100,000.
Also in the game is Tom Dwan, sitting at the peak of his powers during his climb to the top of the high stakes mountain, and he spices things up by putting down $250,000 and encouraging straddles and re-straddles in this $200/$400 cash game.
Dwan is not one to make large attempts at conversation but his game screams as he relentlessly put opponents in a tough spot. No one is safe from a Dwan river overbet.
If there’s one thing Phil Hellmuth hates, it’s “some young internet kid” playing hyper-aggressive against him and that is what Dwan does. Watching Dwan make Hellmuth question his very existence with when put to the test is worth the price of admission.
Despite his consistent braggadocio, there is a soft spot to Hellmuth and how competitive he is that is endearing to audiences. Rather than sit back and be poked for the full session, Hellmuth is full of fire which he kindly directs toward Esfandiari and Laak.
Another player joining in on the fun is California cash game professional Kenny Tran, who is never shy for words himself. The final member of the show is businessman Bob Safai, who gets treated to a special edition of the Dwan buzzsaw. Trans poker acumen was recently discussed on Heads Up with Remko as Brandon Adams called the long-time pro The most talented poker player in the world. Listen to the entire podcast here.
Hellmuth is the episode’s namesake but it is Dwan who steals the show. There is a reason why his return to Poker After Dark in August was so highly anticipated and performances like this are why.
By this point in the history of Poker After Dark, Dwan and Hellmuth have squared off on multiple occasions and leave nothing to the imagination as they battle in large pot after large pot.
Watch the next chapter in one of poker’s best one-on-one rivalries as “Hellmuth Bash CashGame I” is now available in The VAULT on PokerGO.
If you thought the first edition of the “Hellmuth Bash Cash Game” was big, be prepared for an even bigger sequel. The same Poker After Dark lineup returns for the second running of the ‘Poker Brat’-centric game and opens with $930,000 on the table in a $200/$400 game.
The latest addition to THE VAULT on PokerGo features Phil Hellmuth in a battle of wills and words against the world’s best.
At the proverbial head of the table is Hellmuth but the magnet of attention belongs to Tom Dwan in Seat 1. At the start of the game, Dwan is sitting on $368,000 which he earned through well-timed bluffs and getting paid off with the goods during the first “Hellmuth Bash.”
The game starts with Dwan and Hellmuth as the only players up in the game as play opens with an $800 straddle and a $100 ante, creating maximum action.
Dwan made a habit of picking on Bob Safai in the first game and picks up where he left off in what is a recurring theme during the episodes.
Prop bets line the table as well with it being noted that Phil Laak would not take $500 to not talk for 15 minutes. Also in the mix is a round of “Lodden Thinks” with the co-creators of the game, Laak and Antonio Esfandiari, using Hellmuth as their brain.
Kenny Tran makes the most of his camera time as well, showing why he to this day is among the most respected No Limit cash game players of his time. At the height of his nickname “Sick Call Kenny,” Tran does not disappoint with the moves he pulls at the table.
The “Hellmuth Bash” cash games are the only Poker After Dark episodes Tran ever appeared on and one can’t help but wonder why he did not appear on more.
Thanksgiving season is officially here so dig into a main course of Hellmuth and a delicious helping of side dishes with “Hellmuth Bash Cash Game II” officially on-demand inside THE VAULT.
by Stephen A. Murphy | Published: May 04, 2009 |
With 11 bracelets, Phil Hellmuth is considered by many to be one of the best tournament players in the world. But that doesn’t stop his detractors from saying that he can’t compete at a high level in the big cash games.
Over the next two weeks, Hellmuth’s doubters and supporters will have a chance to watch the “Poker Brat” in action as he plays $200-$400 against five opponents on NBC’s Poker After Dark. The minimum buy-in for the show is $100,000.
The two-week series, entitled “The Hellmuth Bash,” will also feature Tom Dwan, Kenny Tran, Phil Laak, Antonio Esfandiari, and amateur Bob Safai.
This is the first time in Poker After Dark’s history that a cash game will be featured over two week’s time. The popular daily show also announced that it would have the players redraw their seats midway through the session so that viewers could see the players adjust to different positions.
Dwan, more commonly known as “durrrr” online, is a cash game specialist. He completes at the highest levels online, but has shown his ability to transition to live games. In his first World Series in 2008, he made two final tables.
Laak and Esfandiari, often paired up together in TV cash games, are known for their back-and-forth banter and endless prop bets. The two regularly play the high-level cash games.
Tran, the winner of the 2008 heads-up bracelet at the WSOP, isn’t modest when it comes to his abilities. Dubbed “Sick Call,” he isn’t afraid to let his instincts take over a game.
Finally, Safai will round out this group of six. Considered an amateur poker player, he has played his fair share of high stakes. He has previously appeared on High Stakes Poker on Game Show Network.
From time to time I watch some poker on TV. I like to see if I can pick up anything specific on the players for use against them later and also general playing style as well. So I recorded Poker After Dark this past week, which was a high stakes cash game, and watched it over the weekend. It had a great cast with Patrick Antonius, Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth, Gus Hansen, Daniel Negreanu and Tom Dwan. I thought it was one of the best line-ups possible; all great players and the banter would be enjoyable as well.
Much to my surprise I found it not even close to my expectations. Early on they each (except for Hellmuth) put $100,000 in the middle and just ran out the whole board. They wanted a little gamble and hoped it would put some of the players on tilt if they lost, and while this may be fun to do occasionally, it s not poker. They showed very few hands and the ones they did, really were not representative of great poker. Although I will say Patrick made some big folds that I thought were good against Tom Dwan even though he was ahead. Sometimes you need to fold the best hand. Hellmuth and Dwan mixed it up a few times, and those hands were interesting. Dwan had 66 and Hellmuth 77 and although the pot started multi-way, Hellmuth continued on the flop, which missed both players, and Dwan hung around to catch a six on the turn. Hellmuth got away from Dwan s value bet on the river. I don t think Dwan played the hand very well, other than catching a two outer on the turn. The show then cut to this year s NBC Heads Up match between Hellmuth and Dwan where they get it all in pre-flop with AA vs. 10 10, and Dwan hits a 10 and sucks out. Hellmuth does berate Dwan for his call with pocket 10 s. I am not sure Dwan is ever folding pocket 10 s pre-flop in a heads up match unless he is much deeper. What was interesting is that Negreanu bet Hellmuth that he would lose in the poker after dark cash game, and that was the source of some good natured abuse. Durr did double up Hellmuth in a hand where the flop hit Hellmuth and Durr turned a flush only to have Hellmuth river a bigger flush. Interestingly enough Durr when deciding whether or not to call Hellmuth s all in on the river talked through the possibilities and concluded Hellmuth had it, and then called anyway. It was like a page from Negreanu s play-book where he correctly deduces his opponents hand, which beats him and then calls anyway.
I find that I am asked on a regular basis about Tom Dwan or Durr as he is known online and is he the best. Everyone wants to know how he does what he does and about the stakes he plays. In many a sport a dominant player emerges and for their time they are unbeatable. In basketball I always think of Michael Jordan as that guy. Although Theo Tran argued with me that he though LeBron James is much more dominant today than Jordan ever was, I don t even think this is worth addressing. In golf it was Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and now Tiger Woods, although Tiger recently moved his ball into a hazardous lie and wound up on the wrong side of a club. In their own time they were each the best and since they never played against each other while in their prime, you cant really compare them.
I say the same thing about Durr. He is that type of dominant player. Although unlike professional sports there is a fair amount of luck involved which will have an
One topic I address frequently with new players is bankroll management. It is perhaps the fundamental corner stone around which a winning poker game is built. Even a solid winning player that plays above their bankroll can find them selves broke with a short run of bad luck. I am very conservative when it comes to bankroll management. In cash games you should have a minimum of 20 times the buy-in, and I m liking 50-200 buy-ins. You may think that s crazy and it depends what games you are playing and whether they are live or online. For instance if you are playing 6 simultaneous games online each with a 1k buy-in and lets say they are PLO where more often than not your whole buy-in will be in the pot several times in a session versus someone playing a live limit game with a 1k buy in, bankroll requirements will be quite different.
If you are playing 200/400 PLO and you are 100-200k deep, you can go through several buy-ins in a day and if you run bad over the course of a month, which sooner or later happens to everyone, it is conceivable to drop 10 million or more. So how big does your bankroll and net worth have to be? Pretty damn big, in fact almost nobody should be playing those limits. For some players ego dictates they level they like to play, other s look for softer games, whatever choices you make try and satisfy a few rules. Never play so big that you are jeopardizing money you need for necessities, Don t play so big that you are uncomfortable and it affects your play, try and pick a level you can beat or at least tolerate the losses.
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