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Darvin Moon

The November Nine: Darvin Moon

By Loki Luchs of Predictem.com

As we begin to look toward November, people start putting down their bets on who the last man standing will be… I mean that both literally and metaphorically. The Vegas casinos, especially Harrah's who sponsors the World Series of Poker, start moving their money lines around in the sand. One of the heavy hitters who will likely make it deep is an amateur named Darvin Moon.

Moon, who owns a lumber business in Maryland, currently sits with a staggering lead at about 59 million in chips. With roughly 1/3rd of all the money in play, it is virtually impossible that he won't make it at least until the action is down to five players. This is a very different situation from the 2008 Main event, where the chip leader had only 26 million in chips and the 8th place had 10 million! Going into the table, Moon is 26 million in chips ahead of 2nd chip leader Eric Buchman! Moon has a very dominating position and many people wonder how much he'll improve between now and November.

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Despite his huge stack, I don't feel confident that Darvin will make it to heads-up action. His story is the spitting image of Chris Moneymaker: an amateur wins a free seat in the big show and finds a rush at the right time… perhaps he'll even have a duplicate Phil Ivey showdown before this thing is over. From what I've seen of his play in the WSOP, Darvin had a horseshoe surgical implanted in his brain. He's won every hand he gets into so far, but that doesn't say much about his ability. Deep stack poker is about bullying and I think he's the wrong personality type for that; if he does try to bully, it's entirely possible he'll balk when someone comes over the top of him. He has some serious players at this table and I think he's going to be cautious when it comes to investing his money in pots.

Moon has a very likable persona, joking with reporters and with other players that: "What were there, 6,400 players in this tournament? I'd guess about 6,300 of them are better poker players than I am." He went on to say:"I told them as soon as I go card dead you guys will eat me alive. I'm humble. I know where I stand among the class of people I'm against. I'm outclassed by so far." A well-off man to begin with, the money isn't going to be life changing as much as it would be retirement-inducing. If we can assume that he will be able to keep from losing his massive lead in the first hour, he will certainly be taking home a million dollar paycheck.

The title of champion, however, doesn't strike me as important to him. I feel that he's going to whittle down his opponents by letting them fight amongst themselves. He could play nothing but pocket rockets for five hours and still have a very decent stack in front of him. I feel that he's going to let people out play him rather than risk losing any major portion of his stack. I look to see him going out in fourth place.

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