In fact, the only think Busquet didn’t do on the way to winning the vaunted King of the Hill championship belt, was beat inaugural King of the Hill winner Phil Hellmuth. That’s because Canadian poker streamer Parker “TonkaaaaP” Talbot managed to get past the 14-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner in the event’s first round at Rivers Casino Oct. 6.
Poker Night in America tweaked the first-round format to avoid having another match last less than ten-minutes like Frank Kassela’s loss to Dan Cates in the first King of the Hill. This time around, even the first round was best two of three.
Busquet beats Deeb
Busquet came in as the favorite with a reputation for being one of the best high-stakes heads-up sit and go players in the world. Deeb never really stood a chance with card distribution clearly in Busquet’s favor from start to finish.
Talbot then took it on the chin from Hellmuth in the first match between the two.
The players took a break allowing Pete “The Manz” Manzinelli to steal the show from high-stakes poker pro and YouTube star turned King of the Hill commentator Doug Polk. Manzinelli’s almost cringe-worthy and certainly comical arrogance and machismo played perfectly against Polk’s straight man. It was an entertaining half hour of fill with the two drinking, posturing and Manzinelli nicknaming Polk the sure-to-stick “One Chug Doug.”
When play resumed, Talbot outlasted Hellmuth in a marathon second match, forcing a third. The match turned on one decisive hand where Talbot made a flush on the river versus Hellmuth’s turned trips. Although the ensuing blow up was a minor one by Hellmuth’s “Poker Brat” standards, he did appear tilted.
In the third and final match, Talbot ended up on the right end of a flush-over-flush situation. This ended Hellmuth’s title defense and helped Talbot push through to the Oct. 7 final against Busquet.
Talbot bluffed off the first match in the final, running queen-high into Busquet’s trip tens.
New King of the Hill crowned
Busquet made some key folds in the second match to stay alive. He then took a massive lead making trips against Talbot’s top pair. Finally, Busquet outdrew Talbot’s big slick all-in preflop to capture the winner-take-all $200,000 prize.
Busquet credited the deck for the win. Talbot pointed to the fact Busquet managed to fold every time he held a big hand.
Busquet won’t have to wait long for the opportunity to defend his title. Poker Night in America King of the Hill 3 is set for Oct. 25 and 26. This one will take place at Philadelphia, PA’s Sugarhouse Casino. High stakes heroes Dan Coleman, Brandon Adams, 2017 WSOP Main Event champion Scott Blumstein, and Busquet are all confirmed.
Like the first two incarnations of King of the Hill, live-on-delay coverage will be featured on the Poker Night in America Twitch channel.