Moon Kim Wins World Poker Tour’s Bay 101 Shooting Stars EventSaturday, March 10th, 2012 by Ryan
The World Poker Tour’s Bay 101 Shooting Stars event featured some incredible play and some big names to go with it as well. When all was said and done though, it was a final table of six players that featured no Shooting Stars remaining in the event. The final six players came to play in a final table that ended up being one of the longest in the history of the World Series of Poker. When the day began, it was Erik Cajelais who had the chip lead over Ubaid Habib, and Moon Kim sitting in third place. They were all over the two million chip mark, which left the three players below them, Joe Elpayaa, Andrew Badecker, and Joe Serock, with some work to do. The final table ran so long, that the first elimination actually didn’t even occur for nearly five hours!
The first player sent home was Joe Elpayaa, who lost a big pot to Badecker, as Badecker was holding pocket Kings and had the Q-J off suite of Elpayaa dominated. This left Elpayaa with only 35k in chips, and he was knocked out on the next hand. Badecker was then the next player to go home when he got into it with Moon Kim, who turned over pocket fours for a slight lead against the A-K of Badecker. While an Ace came on the flop, it also had a two and a five, and Kim was able to complete his straight on the turn to send Badecker home in 5th.
The power had completely shifted at this point, and Kim found himself with almost half of the chips out there, and Cajelais lost a big pot to Serock leaving him as the short stack for the event. Cajelais then pushed over top of the both Habib and Kim and Habib and Kim both called. The two checked down the K-K-7-5-Q board, and Habib showed Q-9 for two pair, but Cajelais couldn’t beat that and mucked, going home in 4th place.
When we were down to three handed play, Serock did his best to continue to slowly build his stack, but eventually got it all in against Kim, who had K-Q. Serock was ahead with his pocket nines, but the turn was a King, and Serock was unable to improve from that point. This sent Joe Serock home in third place, and set up an interesting heads up match to decide the championship.
To this point, the final table had ran for over eight hours, and Kim was sitting with a nice chip lead of 2.6 million over Habib. Habib was able to even up the score multiple times, but was never able to grab the chip lead. The heads up match went for 35 hands before the deciding hand occurred when Kim made a min raise from the button. Habib called this raise, and the flop came with a 9-4-2 with two diamonds. Habib checked, and Kim bet 300k, which led to a check-raise up to 900k from Habib. Kim then shoved all in and left Habib with a tough decision. He made the call, and turned over Q-9, while Kim was holding the J-7 of diamonds for the flush draw. The river showed an eight of diamonds, and gave the championship to Kim.
Kim took home $960,900 for his incredible run through a star-studded field, while Habib got a nice consolation prize of $570,200 for his second place finish.