How would you play the rivers on these two 2016 WSOP Main Event?

Two More Challenging River Decisions

“I love poker because it’s the most challenging thing in the world to me.”

So said high-stakes pro Griffin Benger (pictured above) on this week’s coverage of the 2016 World Series of Poker Main Event airing on ESPN.

Two More Challenging River Decisions
Two More Challenging River Decisions

As we already know, Benger would successfully meet the Main Event challenge this summer to make the final table that will start October 30. The episodes shown this week covered the last part of Day 5, carrying the action down from 137 players to just 80, with Benger and his fellow final tablists Gordon Vayo, Kenny Hallaert, Jerry Wong, and Fernando Pons all receiving air time.

 Josephy will have the chip lead when the Main Event final table begins, but we saw him nearly knocked out with just under 110 players left in a hand versus Vladimir Geshkenbein. All in on the flop with a set of sixes versus Geshkenbein’s flush draw, Josephy watched the turn complete his opponent’s flush, but the river paired the board to give Josephy a better full house and preserve his tournament life.

The focus this week was once more on the talkative William Kassouf who enjoyed the chip lead for much of the latter part of Day 5, ultimately ending with a top five stack. While there were again a few interesting hands involving Kassouf’s opponents trying to sort through his constant “speech play,” since we covered an example of that last week we’ll highlight a couple of other hands from this week’s shows for a new round of “What Would You Do?”

Hand #1: Benger vs. Niwinski

We’ll start with a hand involving Benger and play along with him versus the big-stacked Michael Niwinski, one of the “first-timers” being highlighted by ESPN who enjoyed an especially deep run in his initial WSOP Main Event.

With exactly 100 players left from the starting field of 6,737, the average chip stack was 3.37 million. Benger had the chip lead at the time with a little over 8.5 million while Niwinski began this hand with just under 6.9 million.

The blinds were 30,000/60,000 with a 10,000 ante. The action was picked up on the flop, although we’re told Niwinski was the preflop raiser. As he has position it appears that after Niwinski raised, Benger was in the blinds with {8-Hearts}{8-Clubs} and called, making the pot 400,000 even.

The flop came {7-Clubs}{2-Clubs}{5-Spades}, and with his overpair Benger checked. Niwinski continuation bet 155,000 and Benger called. The turn was the {Q-Diamonds} and Benger checked again. This time Niwnski bet 440,000, and after thinking a short while Benger called once more, building the pot to 1.19 million.

The {6-Clubs} completed the board, and Benger checked again. Niwinski is shown sitting quietly for about a half-minute, then betting 440,000. Read More on