In the first hand of the heads-up, JC Alvarado raised to 110,000 and Igor Kurganov defended. The flop was and Kurganov check-called 75,000 from Alvarado. On the turn, Kurganov check-called 275,000 from his opponent.
The river brought a double-paired board with the . Kurganov checked a third time and Alvarado seized out of a bet of 300,000. The Team PokerStars Pro gave it some thought, then paid it off.
Alvarado tabled for aces full and Kurganov mucked. With that, both players now have nearly equal stacks. They called over the floor to pause the clock and look at possible deal options.