How well Gus Hansen does with ladies of all shapes and sizes.
It also, however, featured a still relatively unknown Lex "RaSZi" Veldhuis absolutely running over the feature table, raising, re-raising and bluffing with ridiculous frequency - and no one seemingly able to adjust to it.
His most frequent whipping boy: young German player Simon Muenz.
Game: World Series of Poker, $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em Main Event, Day 1a.
Players: Lex "RaSZi" Veldhuis; Simon Muenz.
In this hand, RaSZi raises to $600 with K♠ J♥ at $100/$200. Muenz calls with the 7♥ 6♥.
They take a flop heads-up of T♣ 7♠ 6♣. Veldhuis checks. Muenz bets $1,100 into $1,500.
Veldhuis check-raises to $5,000 and Muenz makes the call. The turn comes Q and Veldhuis fires $6,800
Muenz again makes the call and the river comes 4. Veldhuis fires $7,000 into $25,100.
Muenz tanks and folds.
For starters, it's very hard for Veldhuis to represent a real hand as the pre-flop raiser when he check-raises.
As the pre-flop raiser, Veldhuis is c-betting a ridiculously high percentage of flops. Because of that, his c-bets are rarely going to be given credit. So, if he has a real hand, he'd c-bet just the same and watch it get called down extra light.
When he chooses to check-raise, he almost screams "I don't have a real hand - this is the only way to make my hand look legitimate."
Muenz makes the call and the whole hand is derailed.
Don't get me wrong, this hand is not easy. They're 150bb-ish deep and it's early in the tournament. But just calling here really puts you in some tough spots on the turn and river.
The best play is to re-re-raise the super-aggressive Veldhuis with two pair.
Even if Veldhuis' flop check-raise did make sense, it reps a very narrow range or overpairs, sets and possibly flush draws.
Since Muenz holds 7-6, he can discount sets of sixes and sevens and narrow his range to tens, overpairs, flush draws and bluffs.
With overpairs and especially sets, Veldhuis would be looking to build a pot. He wouldn't risk missing a street of value trying to check-raise the flop and whiffing. He'd just bet out and start building the pot.
So his range is weighted towards bluffs - especially with the strange check-raise on the flop as the pre-flop raiser.
Muenz really should re-re-raise the flop to try and get all-in vs flush draws and overpairs, and to get Veldhuis to fold his bluffs.
Though normally if you think your opponent is bluffing you should call and let him keep bluffing, it's still not a great idea.
There are far too many bad cards to come that will be super difficult to play against. A short list of them: Any club or any eight, nine or ten.
That's 18 cards right there that can make Muenz's life very difficult on the turn. So he really should be looking to get it in on the flop with bottom two - even 150bb deep.
Unfortunately for Muenz, he chooses to just call and the Q♣ is one of those 22 scare cards. He's now left wondering if Veldhuis check-raised with a flush draw.
He chooses to flat-call, and the 4♣ falls on the river. Without a club, Muenz is forced to fold to Veldhuis' bet.
Because he made a mistake on the flop, the rest of the hand becomes extremely difficult to play out and Muenz is forced to fold after putting in ~$14k of his $30k starting stack.
How could it have been avoided? By re-re-raising the super-aggressive Veldhuis on the flop.