The “Big One” Agreement Between Deeb and Gus HansenTuesday, July 31st, 2012 by Ryan
In many poker tournaments and events, you’ll find that players will make deals to split up parts of the prize pool in order to guarantee themselves big pay day’s. This isn’t something that’s incredibly strange or out of the ordinary, but what happened at the Big One for One Drop satellite is one situation that was incredibly interesting, and is absolutely worth looking at. The satellite featured a $25,000 buy-in, and there was at least one guaranteed seat into the $1 million One Drop tournament at the 2012 World Series of Poker. If there were enough entries, then there would be prize money given away to the second, and possibly third place players. The way that it worked out, the tournament gave away one seat, and also had a $1 million pay day to second place.
In total, this final satellite before the big time tournament drew in 96 players, which left us with that second place pay day. When the action came down to only two players, it was Gus Hansen and Shaun Deeb, both who are very well-known professional poker players in the game today. At the start of the heads up match, they both had around the same starting stack, setting up a very intriguing heads up match. Things got even more interesting though before the match began, as the two talked for a bit in order to come up with a situation that would work out best for both sides. When they came back from their discussion, the play that ended up happening was one that has been talked about since it happened.
Heads up play began, and Deeb made an initial raise that was almost the size of his entire stack, except for one 5000 tournament chip. Hansen made the call and the flop came down, and Hanson then then bet, leading to a fold from Deeb. Obviously Deeb had pot odds to call almost anything there, and of course the next hand saw Hansen win the tournament and the seat into the Big One for One Drop tournament, and Deeb take home the $1 million pay day.
Basically it came down to the fact that (it seems) that Deeb wanted the $1 million, mainly because that is obviously a lot of money, but also because he can use that to enter into many different poker tournaments. It’s unknown as to whether Deeb got a part of Hansen’s action in the One Drop tournament, but there’s a good chance that it could have been part of the deal. Basically, the $1 million for Deeb was probably enough to enter him into tournaments for the rest of the year essentially without having to spend any of his own money that he didn’t already have.
Personally, the deal seems fair, and on my end I would have gone with Deeb. Taking the $1 million is really the smart decision, especially since he would have been up against some incredibly competition, and he probably used that money to buy-in to a ton of tournaments to give himself a shot to win more titles and potentially fund himself for free for a good while down the road.