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TSoprano bests Negreanu in WSOP LHE Six-Max
Daniel Negreanu was unquestionably the favorite at the final table of the $2,500 Limit Hold'em Six-Max event on Sunday night.
But somebody forgot to tell Brock Parker.
Parker, a Limit Hold'em legend online, defeated a visibly frustrated Negreanu in heads-up play to claim his first World Series of Poker bracelet and $223,688 in prize money.
"[Negreanu]'s a nice guy and I hope he wins more bracelets, but I'm glad I won," Parker told PokerListings.com.
"He was definitely one of the best players at the table and one of the players I least wanted to have to face, but it turned out to be easy because of the cards."
Parker entered heads-up play with 1.1 million to Negreanu's 1.5 million and saw Kid Poker quickly reduce his stack to less than 1 million before he managed to turn things around.
"I wasn't all that concerned when I fell behind," Parker said. "I still had chips and I was never super short. I mean, I had been shorter at other times in the final table."
Parker turned two pair to take down a big pot and that seemed to swing the momentum.
Within the span of a few hands he had reclaimed the chip lead and his rush clearly tilted Kid Poker.
"I don't want to see another turn card," he told Parker. "Because you're always going to hit it."
As more and more of his chips shuttled across the felt to Parker's stack, Negreanu got more and more unsettled.
"In all of the key pots he just kept catching so many freaking cards on the turn or river," he said. "It was brutal."
Ultimately, Negreanu couldn't stem the tide and saw his stack reduced to only a few hundred thousand.
"I mean, I can lay down some of those hands, but it's limit hold'em and usually there is a gazillion bets in the pot," he said.
"He busted my queens with jack-six and he busted my jacks with a three-four. You're going to lose a lot of money when you get those hands beat because you can't lay them down."
Then Parker ended the show, his flopped pair of aces besting Negreanu's flopped second pair with all of the money getting in on the turn.
Negreanu couldn't improve and Parker had his bracelet.
"I don't know, it seems overdue," Parker said. "It might sound cocky, but I was hoping to win a tournament eventually. It means a lot to beat Daniel Negreanu heads-up."
Parker's victory derailed a bracelet run that, for Negreanu, must have seemed foretold.
Kid Poker told PokerListings he had uncovered the secret to tournament LHE and his deep run in this event caused the WSOP broadcasters to call in their film crew on its day off in hopes of capturing history.
The feature table in the Amazon Room was packed with fans hoping for a glimpse of the same, but their hero would pull up just short.
"At first I thought the fans were going to be booing me," said Parker. "But I heard one guy say it was a real David versus Goliath match. People were like, 'wow, he's playing against Daniel Negreanu.'"
One onlooker who wasn't cheering for Negreanu was WSOP bracelet-holder Eric Froehlich, his allegiances firmly in Parker's camp.
"He's a very good player," Froehlich said. "I'll go on record saying he'll win another bracelet."
Negreanu earns $138,280 for his second-place finish. Given that he's into Phil Ivey for $200k after the Full Tilt Pro's lowball win last week, it's no wonder the popular pro looked so frustrated as his bracelet slipped away.
Kid Poker immediately took his seat in the $10,000 Omaha 8 World Championship and by day's end had 46,000. He'll look to make another serious run at that fifth bracelet on Day 2 tomorrow.
Check out the PokerListings 2009 WSOP section for full coverage.