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Turbo Third Day at the Mirage Poker Showdown

Bubble Bursts in Two Hours, So Play Continues Down to the Final Two Tables

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With two days of poker behind them, the 40 remaining participants in the 2007 Mirage Poker Showdown took their seats at noon, eager to advance to the money. In accordance with the theme of the tournament, over half these players were professionals. Darrel "Gigabet" Dicken came into the day with a massive chip lead ($501,900). He had an almost two to one chip lead on his closest competitor, Phil Ivey ($284,900). The fortunes of lady luck lead these 40 players down different paths throughout the day, but Gigabet remained the king of the mountain.

The first hour and a half were harsh to many professionals as Anh Van Nguyen, Eric Froehlich, Burt Boutin, and Chip Reese were sent into the afternoon desert sun. Daniel Alaei, who was one of the chip leaders at the end of day one also made an exit. Two relatively unknowns were busy early, Cory Carroll and David Peat built large chip stacks. Carroll is not that unknown to the poker world anymore, after just recently winning the championship event at the World Series of Poker circuit stop at Caesar's Palace. The two players clashed on a big hand late in level eleven: David Peat bet $9,000 from the cut-off and Cory Carroll made the call from the button. The flop came Q 8 6 and Carroll bet $16,000. Peat called and they both checked the 6 on the turn. The K is dealt on the river and Peat threw out $20,000. Carroll mucked the hand and Peat increases his stack to $335,000. After the hand, Carroll was still the chip leader with $644,000.

The players went to their first break with only 28 remaining, and Tommy Garza was crowned as the bubble boy in the first hand after the break. There was a pause in the action as the decision was made to continue and then for a re-draw. Rene Angelil was the first player to finish in the money about five minutes later. He took home the $17,292 in prize money that all the finishers in places 27-19 would receive. Dicken claimed the next victim: Dicken limped for $6,000, Alan Goehring raised to $12,000, and Phil Ivey called. Jared Hamby called out of the big blind, and Dicken called as well. The flop came 6 6 4 and Hamby moved all in for his last $44,000. Dicken called and everyone else got out of the way. Hamby flipped over 9 7 and Dicken showed 6 5 . The turn was the 8 and Hamby took the lead with his flush, but the river was the 4 . That filled up Dicken's boat and Hamby was sent to the rail in 26th.

With action down to three tables all eyes turned to the one that featured two of the largest stacks, Dicken and Ivey, as well as John D'Agostino, and Alan Goehring. Dicken eclipsed the $700,000 mark on this peculiar hand: Alan Goehring made it $12,000 to go and was called by Phil Ivey and Darell Dicken. The flop came 10 9 4 and Dicken checked. Goehring checked as well and Ivey bet $25,000. Dicken and Goehring called and the turn was the 10 . Dicken and Goehring both checked again and Ivey bet out $60,000. Dicken and Goehring both made the call, and the river was the 7 . The action is checked around and Dicken turned over A 10 . Goehring and Ivey both mucked their hands and Darell Dicken now has $750,000. "Phil Ivey had a lot of chips, so when I got involved in a pot with him I played a little more cautious. I didn't want to get crippled by the only guy who could cripple me," said Dicken.

Other players were on the move as well during the late stages of the day. Some were just trying to survive, like David Pham. Pham remarked during a smoke break, "I just have to double up twice." He did accomplish the feat, to end the day at $107,000, but he has some work to do tomorrow if he wants to make a run at the final six. Amnon Filippi made a late push to end the day in fifth place ($532,000), while Ivey took a hit in the later stages of day three to come in at sixth (475,000). Jonathan Little also lurks in the top ten ($300,000). Carroll held strong with his large stack and finished in second ($697,000).

Dicken ended the day with the chip lead once again, and once again that chip lead was impressive. He was the only player to reach $1 million ($1,167,000). I've never really had any problems throughout the entire tournament. It feels really nice to be in the situation where I'm at right now," said Dicken. Looking towards tomorrow the final 18 players will return and play down to a final television table of six, which will be filmed live at the Mirage, by the World Poker Tour on Wednesday, May 23. The chip leader Dicken was looking toward tomorrow as well, "Basically, I'm going to see what type of gear the players are [playing], and I'm going to go the opposite route."

Tune your web browser to CardPlayer.com at noon PST tomorrow so you can follow all the action in the live updates, chip counts, photos, and videos.