The third season of Poker after dark
Season 3 was taped in October 2007 at the South Point Casino in Las Vegas
Week 1 (Dream Table) featured the winner of a Full Tilt Poker sponsored contest (Ken Light) and was billed as the five professionals Light chose to play against, though Light said in an interview during one of the week’s episodes that he was only asked to list his favorite players, and did not know that the list would be used to form the table.
Week 9 (Love at First Raise) featured 3 pairs of players who were couples at the time of filming: Jennifer Harman & Marco Traniello, David Benyamine & Erica Schoenberg, and Jennifer Tilly & Phil Laak.
"Dream Table" week featured a Poker After Dark first: Phil Hellmuth won by calling an all-in bet from both Ken Light and Jen Harman on the last hand, resulting in the first match to end with no heads-up play.
"Hecklers Week" featured a controversial situation which necessitated the producer having to come to the table. Phil Hellmuth attempted to bluff the river with pair of aces on the board in a hand against Jean-Robert Bellande, and Bellande called. Hellmuth then said "you got it" and held onto his cards, waiting for Bellande to show the winner. Bellande felt he did not have to show his hand, while Hellmuth thought "olden day etiquette" indicated that he should. The tournament was stopped for 5 minutes while all players voiced their opinions and eventually the producer came over and then Hellmuth showed his hand, necessitating that Bellande show his to claim the pot.
"Jam Up" week featured a rule that allowed any player knocked out over the first six hands (once around the table) to rebuy. On the first hand, Eli Elezra was knocked out when his AK didn’t crack Howard Lederer’s AA when they both got all their chips in pre-flop. Eli was allowed to rebuy for another $20,000, which brought the total chips in play to $140,000, and the first place prize to $140,000.
The "Best Of" episode that closed Season 5 featured Elezra’s knockout on the first hand of Jam Up week, but did not make clear that he was able to rebuy after busting out on the first hand per that week’s rules, and insinuated he was eliminated.
This week on the longstanding NBC franchise “Poker After Dark,” three of the gabbiest players in the game will take to the felts. None, however, can outtalk two-time World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet winner David Grey.
Grey chatted nearly non-stop through the first 30 minutes of the hour-long kickoff episode of “He Said, She Said” week with a vengeance. His myriad topics included golf, the Las Vegas real estate market, the weather, tablemate Jean-Robert Bellande’s Badugi skills, old California poker games, Santa Monica restaurants, his personal life, and episodes of “Seinfeld.” Much of his gabbiness was targeted at Erica Schoenberg, who sat two to his right as the six players vied for a winner-take-all prize of $120,000.
Schoenberg had not fared well on “Poker After Dark” in past appearances and was the first casualty of “He Said, She Said” week on Tuesday night. In previous seasons of the poker series, Schoenberg had exited with K-8 of hearts against Vanessa Rousso’s A-Q of clubs during Season 3. Then, her A-K fell when Marco Traniello hit an open-ended straight draw on the river, which also played out during Season 3.
While Grey chatted it up with Schoenberg, Mike Matusow and Bellande began throwing punches, figuratively of course. Bellande picked up 7-4 of diamonds on Monday’s episode and raised to 600. Matusow came along with 6-5 of the same suit to see a flop of 10-3-J. The action went check-check to the eight of diamonds on the turn, putting two of the suit on the board. Matusow bet 800, Bellande raised to 2,500, and Matusow got out of the way.
Poker News Daily Guest Columnist and UB.com pro Annie Duke, who was the quietest member of the table during the kickoff episode, picked up pocket tens and raised to 550. Grey looked down at A-J and made the call to bring a flop of 5-A-7. Grey check-called a bet of 750 from Duke with top pair to bring an eight on the turn. The action went check-check to a 10 on the river, giving Duke a set. Grey check-called a bet of 1,200 and Duke scooped the 5,100-chip pot to become the sit and go’s chip leader.
Matusow’s well-timed laydowns staved off disaster. In one hand, he raised to 550 pre-flop with A-8 and Duke made it 1,700 with A-J. Matusow flashed the ace and quickly sent his hand into the muck.
Bellande and Matusow continued to tangle. The former raised to 900 pre-flop with pocket eights and Matusow re-raised to 2,300 with just 6-3. Bellande called and, amazingly, the flop came 3-6-2, giving Matusow two pair. Matusow bet 2,300 and Bellande called. Both players checked when a four hit on the turn and the river was a queen. Matusow fired out a bet of 2,700 and Bellande wisely folded despite getting 4:1 on a call.
Bellande was the aggressor throughout the kickoff episode, at one point putting in four straight pre-flop raises with gems like 8-5 suited and 8-6 suited. Then, Karina Jett looked down at K-9 and raised to 800. Duke came along with a wired pair of eights and the duo checked the action down on a board of 7-J-2-Q-J. The Golden Nugget dealer pushed the 1,750-chip pot to Duke, who boosted her stack even further.
“Poker After Dark” airs nightly on NBC at 2:05am ET. Encore airings will be shown through June 7th, when the next new week of episodes can be seen. In it, Phil Hellmuth, Phil Laak, Eli Elezra, Tom “durrrr” Dwan, Doyle Brunson, and Gus Hansen will compete in a $100,000 cash game.