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2017 WSOP Main Event Final Table -- Hand #152


In this hand, Scott shows why he's the world champion -- by making a phenomenal laydown of the second nuts on the river, getting nearly 4 to 1 on his money.

NOTE: In all these Scott Blumstein Hand Reviews, the best learning experience is achieved by pausing the video at each decision point, and thinking through the situation BEFORE listening to Scott's comments.

Want to practice playing 3 handed at the Final Table? From your member control panel, click on the "Final Table Trainer", and then select the option for "Fixed Players Remaining: 3"

Or use the link below to practice the exact hand Scott was dealt:

Click here to practice Queen-eight offsuit, from the small blind, 3-handed, as the big stack

NOTE: The link above will not work right unless you are a paid member of Advanced Poker Training.


  • stoopkids


  • dodid

    Scott Blumstein: “In poker sometimes the more believing you are the better off you’re going to be.”

    Best quote of the hand review. I’d be way ahead (in APT chips) if only I followed it.

  • SteveBlay

    @dodi said:
    Scott Blumstein: “In poker sometimes the more believing you are the better off you’re going to be.”

    Best quote of the hand review. I’d be way ahead (in APT chips) if only I followed it.

    I couldn't agree more. You aren't getting bluffed as often as you think you are!

  • marcelvandorstm

    Who am I to comment this play, ofcourse, I never won anything great. This been said, in the games I play, more often than not, the raise would have been done with Jh,10h,9h as well, although the raise probably would have been bigger. What I exactually want to say is that , if I would lay this hand down every time, in the games I play I 'm probably loosing a lot of money. Wouldn't you agree?

  • 1warlock
    edited May 2018

    Two things - 1st, this is exactly why checking or check-calling the nut-flush draw IP is a higher EV play than betting/raising with it. You get players to bet into you rather than folding them out or getting blown off your equity. Pollak got 2 streets of value here rather than probably only 1 by checking back the flop and flatting the turn.

    2nd, I'm not sure Scott needed to make a great read here. Pollak wasn't doing anything fancy. As mentioned, there really are no bluffs here, and certainly none that work with a min-raise vs a jam at his stack depth. So why did he make the raise? Because he was obligated to. By tournament rules, you cannot check back or flat-call with the nuts when last to act on the river. Pollak had the absolute nuts here and therefore needed to make a bet above flat-calling in order not to be penalized.

    So, when the players actions are consistent with having the nut-flush and the action on the river only makes sense as a means to comply with tournament rules, this is an easy fold, IMO. I'm wondering why this wasn't brought up as part of his reasoning.

    Added: with Scott as the big stack and Pollak and Ott being close, there was no reason to raise preflop in Pollak's position. The last thing he would want is to raise and have Scott jam. Much more prudent play to flat and take a flop with a fairly disguised hand. In his spot, getting to see a cheap flop with a meh-hand probably felt like a gift.

  • mactheknifem
    edited May 2018

    My answer to Marcelvandorst question: Scott's move is probably not "game theory optimal", but he was not up against a random opponent -- I seldom see videos of great players using a "post oak bluff" (one exception: Helmuth v, Jungleman) For that reason, the better my opponent the more likely I will be to fear a small bet on a scary board.

  • texastommyt

    See what you think of my logic about the odds involved in this hand: I think that this hand supports my theory that the process of making a decision whether to bet or not in poker is somewhat different for tournament versus cash play. Here is an example of what I mean. A cash game player is out for a walk and comes upon a bridge that crosses over a deep ravine. The sign at the beginning of the bridge says the toll to cross is 1$, if you make it across you will be paid $200, and the chances of the bridge collapsing is 100:1 (99 times out of a hundred you are dead). So the cash game player thinks this is a good bet. He / she will be paid 200:1 and because it is a cash game he / she thinks that there is an infinite number of times to try this so in the proverbial long term he / she will be ahead. But the tournament player does not have an infinite number of times to give this a try because he has a limited time to play and thus survival on this hand has to be considered. Which is exactly what Scott did. Despite the attraction of the odds he reasoned properly that survival was more important than the odds of this one circumstance. Does this make sense to anyone else?

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