Chris “Big Huni” Hunichen had been to several WCOOP final tables before, this marked his fifth.
He’d also been heads-up for a WCOOP title twice, but Hunichen came up short both times.
He started both those final tables with the chip lead, but made it to the final two short of the lead both times. The first was in a PLO event and Hunichen started with a nearly 4-to-1 deficit. Things didn’t last long as he took a few early hits and wasn’t able to mount a comeback.
The second came in NLHE and Hunichen wasn’t too far behind in chips. Things only lasted a few hands though, Hunichen moved all-in with ace-queen and got called by pocket eights. Eights held.
Things were different this time. Hunichen made it to the final table in a slightly more humble position, third in chips. But Big Huni quickly became the big stack and by the time he made it heads-up, he had a 2.75-to-1 lead.
It was Hunichen’s turn to end things swiftly. There wasn’t a single double up and it wasn’t a long, drawn out battle; just a quick one-two knockout.
Hunichen wanted his title and he got it.
The final table
Seat 1: RuiNF – 2,770,099
Seat 2: legenden – 7,070,738
Seat 3: Big Huni – 5,210,085
Seat 4: munchenHB – 4,512,546
Seat 5: LgwZ – 5,887,229
Seat 6: WhatIfGod – 2,808,364
Seat 7: Trabelsi – 2,190,939
Trabelsi couldn’t get things going. The Finnish player’s stack got halved early on, but then it got a much needed double. Trabelsi tried to get another, but Hunichen made sure there wouldn’t be one.
Hunichen raised to 200,000 from the hijack and Trabelsi made it 650,000 to go from the big blind. Hunichen called and then Trabelsi nearly moved all-in on the A♦J♠6♥ flop. Trabelsi bet 1,350,000 and was left with just 14,928.
Hunichen doubled the bet and Trabelsi called all-in. Hunichen was in the lead with A♣J♣5♦3♦2♦ while Trabelsi had a 30 percent chance of taking it down with K♠K♣J♦9♣Q♦. The A♠ on the turn left Trabelsi drawing dead and the final table shrunk.
Hunichen took over the lead with 9.5 million while Trabelsi hit the rail in 7th.
The legenden momentarily wrestled the lead back. RuiNF had dropped to 1.3 million and got it in with Q♠Q♥A♣J♠9♣ and legenden called with K♠K♣J♣6♠4♥. The 10♠9♠2♦10♦4♦ board gave legenden the victory and the tournament lead while RuiNF busted in 6th.
Then legenden doubled munchenHB up the very next hand. legenden had a set of queens on the flop and munchenHB had two-pair with aces and tens. Another ace come on the river to fill both players up, but munchenHB’s aces full of tens was more filled up.
Hunichen was back in the lead and saw it grow to 11.8 million while legenden was the next to go.
WhatIfGod had raised preflop and then bet all the way down to the end of 6♥A♣8♣3♠10♥ board. Then WhatIfGod checked on the river and legenden moved all-in for 1.4 million in a 4.6 million pot. WhatIfGod thought into the timebank, wondering if a set of aces was good. It was. WhatIfGod called with A♥A♠5♥3♦2♣ and legenden showed two-pair with A♦10♣J♦5♠4♠.
legenden was out in 5th and WhatIfGod started closing in on Hunichen, but Hunichen took out another player and pulled away.
A short-stacked munchenHB put about 40 percent of his stack in preflop and Hunichen called. The rest went in on the 4♠8♦5♣ flop and munchenHB showed K♥K♠K♦10♥9♥ to Hunichen’s A♠10♦8♠9♣3♣.
A 2♥ came on the river to give Hunichen a wheel and he chipped up to 13.8 million while munchenHB was out in 4th.
That wasn’t enough of a big stack for Big Huni. For safe measure, he absorbed the second-largest stack in two big hands. Hunichen took about half of LgwZ’s stack in a set over set situation and then took the rest of LgwZ’s chips a few hands later with a flush.
The chips went in preflop that time and Hunichen showed A♦J♦K♥4♥2♥ while LgwZ turned over A♠A♥6♦5♣4♠. The flop came 4♦8♠4♣, so you know Hunichen didn’t hit a heart flush. The turn and river brought running diamonds and Hunichen took a massive lead while LgwZ got his second WCOOP final table finish of the week. LgwZ finished 2nd in the WCOOP #22-H last week.
Chris “Big Huni” Hunichen – 22,101,250
WhatIfGod – 8,348,750
This was it, heads-up for a WCOOP title, again. Both players had been there before, the only difference was that Hunichen lost both of his while WhatIfGod came out victorious both times. But now Hunichen had a massive lead, the title was his.
There wasn’t any drama either. The match only lasted six hands, clean and swift. Hunichen took about 3.2 million off WhatIfGod with a straight to WhatIfGod’s set of aces and then Hunichen finished things off two hands later.
WhatIfGod minraised from the button in the final hand and Hunichen called. Hunichen then check-raised the 2♠10♦4♠ flop and WhatIfGod moved all-in. Hunichen called and was in the lead with 10♥8♥7♦4♦3♠ while WhatIfGod turned over A♦A♠9♦5♦4♣.
The 7♥ on the turn gave Hunichen two-pair with tens and sevens and the 6♣ came on the turn to make that the winning hand.
WhatIfGod felt what it was like to finish 2nd in a WCOOP while Hunichen was finally able to taste WCOOP victory after his fifth WCOOP final table and third heads-up match for a WCOOP title.
WCOOP-40-H: $530 5-Card PLO [6-Max]
Prize pool: $304,500
Place paid: 77
1. Chris “Big Huni” Hunichen $53,537.37
2. WhatIfGod (Sweden) $38,381.06
3. LgwZ (Brazil) $27,515.62
4. munchenHB (Cyprus) $19,726.08
5. legenden (Norway) $14,141.74
6. RuiNF (Netherlands) $10,138.29
7. Trabelsi (Finland) $7,956.15
Alexander Villegas is a freelance contributor to the PokerStars Blog.