Timeline

Team Aced and Danny Nelson Victorious!

The heads-up match is over and Danny Nelson is champ! He wins the individual part of this tournament while Team Aced takes the bulk of the cash for winning the team segment. Nelson gets the $13,000 he agreed to in the three-way chop with Phil R. and Gerald Percival, as well as the $6,000 they left on the table to play for.

Team Aced, made up of Jamie Gold, Ashley Nataupsky and Houston Waldie, take the $59,000 team prize as well as a set of Dream Team trophies.

And now, on to the heads-up match. Phil R. started with the chip lead and kept it for some time as the two battled back and forth. The counts were pretty much the same when the biggest hand of the match occurred. 

The Turning Point

Phil R. raised from the button for slightly more than the minimum, adding 190,000 to the pot. Nelson defended in the big blind and the flop came down Q-6-2. Nelson led out for 300,000 and Philip min-raised to 600,000.

Nelson took a moment before moving in for 1.5 million more. Phil went way into the tank. After a long time and a lot of head-shaking he showed one of his cards to our side of the room, a queen.

We were shocked to see him take so long, and we couldn't believe he was going to fold top pair with that much invested. He thought some more and eventually mucked. 

We spoke with Nelson and he had flopped bottom two pair with 6-2.

The Death Blow

Nelson had the lead going into the final hand. It started with Phil R. limping on the button and Nelson checking his big blind. The flop came down K 8 4 and Nelson checked. Phil min-bet 160,000 and Nelson min-raised to 320,000.

Phil took a second before moving all-in and Nelson made a quick call.

Nelson:K 9

Phil: J 8

Nelson was in the lead and would need to dodge a jack or an eight. The turn and river bricked and just like that Danny Nelson had every last chip in play.

Level
1
Blinds
25/50
Players Left
1
Tables Left
1
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Percival Pummeled (3rd)

Phil R. has been turning up the heat at this final table and just sent another player to the exit. Gerald Percival shipped over the top of Phil's button raise when it got to him in the big blind. Phil snap-called and turned over K Q. Percy let out a groan and tabled 9 3.

"I've got you so dominated," Phil said before he saw his opponent's cards. "The nit's got you dominated," he continued, a nod to an earlier update written by this reporter right here at PokerListings.com.

Apparently Philip's buddies have found this blog and are relaying our commentary to him at the table - damn technology.

Back at the felt the dealer was busy running the board with no help whatsoever to the all-in Percival. Percival is out and Phil R. has a big lead going into the heads-up match.

Level
1
Blinds
25/50
Players Left
2
Tables Left
1
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Deal or No Deal?

The remaining three players have struck a deal to chop the remaining money. They're going to leave $6,000 and the trophy on the table for the winner. With the deal in place and the blinds so high we can't see this lasting long. Stay tuned for the details.
Players Left
3
Tables Left
1
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Nataupsky Aced (4th)

Ashley Nataupsky
Ashley Nataupsky

Ashley Nataupsky made an impressive run in this event but, sadly, it has come to an end. She was getting super short and shoved from the small blind when it was folded to her. Gerald Percival woke up with pocket aces and snap-called.

Nataupsky tabled 7 9 and was looking for a miracle. The crowd was definitely on her side as the dealer put K 6 3 down on the felt. Things got a bit better with the 7 on the turn, but the 5 on the river wasn't enough to get her back in this event.

Nataupsky gets $6,660 for her individual finish as well as a cut of the almost $60,000 first-place team prize!

Level
22
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
10000
Players Left
3
Tables Left
1
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Regis Kathy Lee'd (5th)

Took the beat like a gentleman.
Took the beat like a gentleman.

After a long period devoid of eliminations we have our fifth-place finisher, John Regis. The pot began with a raise from Philip R. on the button. Regis took a quick time-out to confer with his team and when he returned he moved in.

Phil snap-called and turned over K Q, which was racing the sixes of Regis. The flop was laid out 7 4 2 and Regis kept the lead. The turn was the 7, no change. Phil had a death grip on the table rail as the dealer threw down the river, the Q!

Phil let out a powerfu, "YEAAAAAAAH," doing his best frat-boy-winning-a-game-of-beer-pong impression. Regis, meanwhile, melted into the background as Phil bumped chests and high-fived his teammates.

We'll be back with updated counts in a sec.

Level
22
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
10000
Players Left
4
Tables Left
1
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Back from Break; Blinds Up

The final table.
The final table.

We've just returned from a 20-minute break and the blinds have gone up to 40,000/80,000 with a 10,000 ante. To put that in perspective the average stack has less than 900k, meaning everyone at the table is in danger of being blinded down if they don't get busy.

Five players remain and we'll keep at it until just one is left standing.

Level
22
Blinds
40000/80000
Ante
10000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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Nelson Doubles Through Nataupsky

Team Aced.
Team Aced.

Ashley Nataupsky has consistently gotten her money in good in this event but a moment ago she did not. We can't blame her for getting it in with A-Q but in this instance she ran into a bigger hand, pocket kings from Danny Nelson.

Her teammate and boyfriend Jamie Gold was calling for an ace but the dealer refused to oblige. Nelson is up to 1.3 million while Nataupsky is down to 600,000.

Level
21
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
10000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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Phil Rivered

Philip R. went on a quick heater last level to take the chip lead but he just lost a monster coin flip to Gerald Percival. It was an auto-all-in with A-K for Percival and pocket queens for Phil.

The flop and turn were no help to Percival but the river brought an ace, crushing Phil's ladies and reducing his stack to next to nothing. Percival, meanwhile, is on right around 2 million.

Level
21
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
10000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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Phil Is a Nit

Everyone's thinking it.
Everyone's thinking it.

We mentioned in the last post that Philip R. was playing like a nit. The last hand we saw confirmed it. It was folded to him in the small blind and he limped. Danny Nelson shoved from the big blind for 360,000 and Phil went into the tank.

After some thought he flashed an ace and folded. We're pretty sure we shove every ace there, or if we're limping it's to snap off the shove. Just saying.

Level
21
Blinds
30000/60000
Ante
10000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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Phil Doubles (Twice)

One time!
One time!

Philip R. was playing like a bit of a nit, letting himself blind down dangerously low. That all changed in two quick hands. On the first one he shoved with A 3 and got a call from Danny Nelson, who was ahead with pocket sixes.

Phil was sweating the dealer hard (pictured at right) as the flop came down and let out a cry of victory as an ace hit the flop. By the river his aces were still good and he was up to 525,000.

We didn't see the next double firsthand but we're being told he got it in on the flop with a set of nines against an open-ended straight draw from Danny Nelson. The set held up and he's now on well over 1 million.

Level
19
Blinds
20000/40000
Ante
5000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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McEvoy Tin Cup'd (6th)

So long Tom.
So long Tom.

We've lost the last remaining World Champion, Tom McEvoy. Action folded to Gerald Percival in the cut-off, who moved all-in. The small blind folded and McEvoy went into the tank to think things over. 

It didn't take him long to make the call, turning over A 7 as he did. He saw he would need some help to crack the pocket tens of Percival. The flop came down 6 4 3, giving him a few more outs. 

The turn was the 8 and the river the 4, missing McEvoy and earning him sixth-place status. Five remain as we continue to play down to a champion.

Level
19
Blinds
20000/40000
Ante
5000
Players Left
5
Tables Left
1
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Bollacks for Pollack (7th)

You caught me smiling, again.
You caught me smiling, again.
Hot on the heels of Joe Shukys to the exit is David Pollack. He got it in with A 7 against the A J of Ashley Nataupsky. The board ran 8 3 3 6 5 and Ashley's jack plays.
Level
18
Blinds
15000/30000
Ante
3000
Players Left
6
Tables Left
1
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Shukys Out in 8th

Bitter beer face?
Bitter beer face?

Joe Shukys has been eliminated, meaning we're down to seven here at Caesars. He got it in on a flop of A-9-8 against John Regis. 8-T for Shukys was in bad shape against his opponent's A-4 and when the turn and river bricked for Shukys he was outta here.

Level
18
Blinds
15000/30000
Ante
3000
Players Left
7
Tables Left
1
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Gold Smelted!

Gold: Fingered.
Gold: Fingered.

We have our first elimination at this final table and it is none other than Jamie Gold. He shoved when it got to him and got looked up by Danny Nelson, who tabled A-K. Gold was behind with T-6. He picked up a double-gutter on the turn but that was as close as he would come to  earning the check mark.

Gold is out but his teammate and girlfriend Ashley Nataupsky is still in. The announcer hit the nail on the head when he said, "Jamie, your girlfriend has outlasted you again, this time in poker." Well played sir.

Level
18
Blinds
15000/30000
Ante
3000
Players Left
8
Tables Left
1
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Action! More Chips for Team Aced

Team Aced has one World Champion playing, Jamie Gold, but it's his teammate Ashley Nataupsky who's doing most of the heavy lifting. A moment ago she shipped over top of an opening raise from Danny Nelson. After some thought he made the call and tabled K T.

Nataupsky was in the lead with pocket jacks and the board didn't change a thing. Nataupsky doubles to around 600,000 while Nelson takes a big hit.

Level
17
Blinds
10000/20000
Ante
2000
Players Left
9
Tables Left
1
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Welcome to the Final Table

After a whirlwind of all-ins and eliminations we have our final nine players. Rob Pisano and Masih Bahadori were out in 11th and 10th, respectively, leaving us with just one patch of felt on which the remaining players will do battle.

We're heading to the floor now to get the new counts and seating arrangements so sit tight for just a moment.

Level
17
Blinds
10000/20000
Ante
2000
Players Left
9
Tables Left
1
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Two Double-Ups and a Bust-Out

Rob Pisano
Rob Pisano

Things are starting to get serious as the blinds really put the pressure on everyone but the biggest stacks. In the last 10 minutes we've seen two double-ups and an elimination.

Lisa Parsons was the second-last woman standing at the last WSOP Main Event and she became the same here today. Ashley Nataupsky is now the last lady as Parsons makes her way to the exit.

Speaking of Nataupsky, she just doubled up and is sitting on just under 400,000.

At the same table Masih Bahadori doubled through Rob Pisano, increasing his count to around 300,000.

Eleven players remain, so we're just two busts away from the final table. Stay tuned!

Level
17
Blinds
10000/20000
Ante
2000
Players Left
12
Tables Left
2
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Three-Way Action; Worst Hand Always Wins

Rob Perleman
Rob Perleman

This is the second time we've seen a three-way preflop all-in with the worst hand taking the pot and the best hand finishing third. This time it was John Fotris shoving his button, and getting all-ins from both the blinds.

Fotris had 4 5, Rob Perleman was in the small blind with A-K and Masih Bahadori was in the big blind with A Q.

By the time the board finished the 4-5 had made trips and the A-Q had made a flush. Bahadori takes the main pot of 235,000 and Fotris takes the side pot while Perleman is out in 15th place.

Level
15
Blinds
6000/12000
Ante
1000
Players Left
14
Tables Left
2
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Team Aced Is a Lock

It's Gold Jerry!
It's Gold Jerry!

The numbers have been crunched and Jamie Gold's Team Aced has the first-place team payout locked up. Both Gold and Ashley Nataupsky are still around, meaning no other team will be able to post a lower combined score.

A number of other teams are guaranteed spots in the money. The only thing left to determine is the final payout spots. One Time!, the Hellmuth Busters, Party at the Mansion, the Claddaghs and the Clones are all guaranteed a spot. Pocket Rockets has to finish 13th or better to dislodge Ari's Training Center 4.

If this all seems a little confusing you're not alone. As players bust out things will become clear and we'll get a look at how much cash these players are going to take home.

Level
15
Blinds
6000/12000
Ante
1000
Players Left
18
Tables Left
2
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Phil Is Sneaky

The Iceman says, "Tuck ya ice in. You ain't iced out."
The Iceman says, "Tuck ya ice in. You ain't iced out."

Philip R. of Team Claddaghs just doubled up, using his team time-out as a deception tool in an attempt to get paid off. It began with Phil opening to 23,000 and the player in the small blind calling. Rob Perleman was in the big blind and moved in for around 170,000.

At this point Phil called a time-out to confer with his team. After the allotted 90 seconds he returned and flat-called the all-in. The small blind folded and Phil tabled pocket aces. He had been trying to lure the small blind into the call with his time-out!

Perleman was in trouble with pocket eights and things were looking grim as the flop and turn ran with no help. The river was an eight,  however, and Perleman luckboxes his way into a much-needed double-up.

Anecdotally, Phil knocked out the bubble boy yesterday in an all-in between aces and eights. Phil had the eights and flopped a set.

Level
14
Blinds
4000/8000
Ante
1000
Players Left
23
Tables Left
3
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Waggoner Loses Battle of the Blinds

Marsha Waggoner just lost around two-thirds of her stack, getting it in with the best of it but failing to make it hold up. Waggoner raised when it folded to her in the small blind and David Pollack shoved for around $100,000 total.

Waggoner made a relatively quick call and saw her A-Q was leading Pollack's K-J. The flop was all rags but the turn was a king. The river was a brick and Waggoner is left with just over $70,000.

Level
14
Blinds
4000/8000
Ante
1000
Players Left
22
Tables Left
3
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No Four for Thor; Norway Weeps

No trophy for Mr. Hansen.
No trophy for Mr. Hansen.

Thor Hansen, the man when it comes to poker in Norway, has been eliminated. He was facing an all-in from the man two seats to his right when he asked for a team time-out, the first we've seen so far. Hansen and teammate Yosh Nakano went to confer in the corner of the room and when Thor returned he announced call.

His opponent turned over A T, which was racing the Norwegian's pocket fours. Thor's opponent was calling for a four for some reason, but the flop came down ace-high. Neither the turn nor the river brought a miracle four and Hansen is out.

Level
14
Blinds
4000/8000
Ante
1000
Players Left
22
Tables Left
3
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Gold Doubles Early

Jamie Gold, one of two former World Champions left in the field, has just doubled. He came into the day near the bottom of the counts and got it in with J-8 against A-Q. In true World Champion fashion he flopped a straight, putting himself light years ahead in the hand. His opponent was unable to redraw, and Gold is getting close to 100,000.
Level
14
Blinds
4000/8000
Ante
1000
Players Left
22
Tables Left
3
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Team Rankings Explained

As we mentioned before the payout structure in this event is a little more involved than your average poker tournament. First, the prize pool is divided among individual and team payouts, with 40% and 60% allocated respectively.

The individual payouts are easy. They're exactly the same as what you're used to. The team payouts, however, need a bit of explaining.

When you bust out of a Dream Team Event you're given a score based on how many people are left in the tournament. The lowest two scores from each team are added together and the teams are ranked according to lowest overall score.

Since there are only 25 players left we already know a lot about how the team rankings are shaping up.

There are eight teams with a shot at the seven team payouts up for grabs. Jamie Gold's Team Aced is the only one to have two players left in, so they are certainly favored to take the No. 1 team ranking.

Below is a table illustrating the eight teams and the scores they have to this point. As you can see one team on the list will not get a team payout. As players bust out we'll get a clearer picture about each team's chances.

Team
Score 1
Score 2
Total Score
Team Aced

TBD

TBD
TBD
Ari's Training Center 4
44
TBD
TBD
Claddaghs
46
TBD
TBD
Hellmuth Busters
33
TBD
TBD
One Time!
28 
29
57
Party at the Mansion
34
TBD
TBD
Pocket Rockets
51
TBD
TBD
The Clones
31
TBD
TBD
Players Left
25
Tables Left
3
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The Final Day

PokerListings is back on the scene in the Caesars Palace poker room for the conclusion of this Dream Team Poker Event. Four hundred and forty-four began at noon yesterday but by the time play wrapped for the night only 25 remained.

Today is when the team strategy starts to be a factor. Forty percent of the prize pool is awarded to the individual, just like a regular tournament, but the other 60% goes to the top seven team scores. 

We're going to do some number-crunching to see what the team scores are looking like. Right now we know Team Aced, led by Jamie Gold, is favored to win. Gold, as well as his teammate Ashley Nataupsky, is still in it, but neither of them has many chips to work with.

For full chip counts click through to the chip count page.

Tom McEvoy has chips, and Thor Hansen and Marsha Waggoner are still in the running. Cards will be in the air at 1 p.m. so stick with us as we play down to a winner!

Players Left
27
Tables Left
3
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Event Name Dream Team Poker Caesars Palace
Venue Caesars Palace Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas
Date 28 March 2009
Final Day 29 March 2009
Buy In $1,650
Entrants 444
Prize Pool $0
First Prize $0
Level Ante Blinds
Level 1 0 25/50
Level 2 0 50/100
Level 3 0 100/200
Level 4 25 150/300
Level 5 50 200/400
Level 6 75 300/600
Level 7 100 400/800
Level 8 100 600/1200
Level 9 200 1000/2000
Level 10 200 1500/3000
Level 11 300 1500/3000
Level 12 500 2000/4000
Level 13 500 3000/6000
Level 14 1000 4000/8000
Level 15 1000 6000/12000
Level 16 2000 8000/16000
Level 17 2000 10000/20000
Level 18 3000 15000/30000
Level 19 5000 20000/40000
Level 20 5000 25000/50000
Level 21 10000 30000/60000
Level 22 10000 40000/80000
Player Name Chip Count
Danny Nelson 4440000
Position Prize