High Stakes Poker Episode 2 Recap: Dwan Struggles & Bellande appears

Updated Updated: January 26, 2023

Season 9 of High Stakes Poker is underway, and we’ve already had some interesting drama unfold in the first episode.

Things didn’t go so well for Dwan, as the second HSP episode saw the poker legend go in big but come out without the win. Thankfully, Phil Ivey made a stronger impact this time around, as viewers were slightly concerned over how quiet and unassuming he was in the first episode. Ivey maybe had a note or two from the show’s producers, as he was in fine form in the second outing.

Another High Stakes Poker star from previous seasons, Jean-Robert Bellande, made a surprise return to the table and rapidly found himself at home with his fast-talking, loose-playing style.

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Ivey and Dwan duke it out

Straight out of the gates, Dwan raised the pot to $1,200 when holding a Queen of Spades and 10 of Spades, but Ivey assertively called with his own hand of Ace of Hearts and 9 of Hearts. Kim Hultman, a professional Swedish online slots player, had the small blind with the Jack of Hearts and 10 of Diamonds, which resulted in Koray Aldemir letting go of his big blind.

The flop of King of Spades, 9 of Spades, and 4 of Clubs gave Dwan a straight flush draw, a gutshot straight draw for Hultman, and a middle pair for Ivey. Dwan made the decision to bet $2,000, which Ivey and Hultman both called, but Dwan really upped the stakes with another $8,000, with only Ivey calling this time.

On the table, the Ace of Clubs river resulted in Dwan picking up a busted flush draw, but Ivey had a smile on his face with a full house. Ivey made a huge bet of $25,000, but Dwan had no shot, and quickly folded with a glum look, as the $51,000 pot made its way to a very buoyant Ivey.

phil ivey high stakes poker

Bellande enjoying the spotlight

Bellande, a favourite of the show, clearly loved his return to High Stakes Poker. Tom Dwan opened things up with $1,200 with his Ace of Spades and Queen of Clubs, and as everyone else at the table folded one by one, Bellande kept going. Being in the big blind with his Jack of Hearts and 8 of Spades, Bellande called, which resulted in the flop of Queen of Hearts, 10 of Spades, and 3 of Hearts. This was favourable to Dwan with a top pair, yet Bellande picked up a gutshot straight draw and a backdoor flush draw.

It wasn’t long before Bellande raised the pot to $16,000. Dwan called and the river resulted in the Queen of Spades, which gave trips to Dwan. Bellande, seeking a quick victory, overbetted the pot and raised it to $51,000, but Dwan saw it coming and rapidly folded, giving Bellande a giant pot of $90,000.

Ivey ends things on a high note

The last session of High Stakes Poker episode two was a huge six-figure battle between Ivey and Negreanu. Ivey kicked things off with $1,200 and his Queen of Diamonds and 10 of Diamonds, while Negreanu called with the 6 of Spades and 6 of Clubs as the big blind. The flop turned out to be King of Diamonds, 5 of Diamonds, and 5 of Hearts, and the pot raised up and up until one card turned the tide.

The river turned out to be the 8 of Diamonds, which gave Ivey the flush, but quick as a flash, Negreanu called and shocked viewers with a bet of $36,000. Ivey called, and with the superior hand, ended the episode with a giant $118,700 pot to show everyone that he’s very much still in the game and deserves a place on HSP.

High Stakes Poker will continue exclusively on PokerGO, every Monday night for 12 more weeks at 8pm (ET).