Cate Hall

Cate Hall Defeats Mike Dentale in Grudge Match for the Ages

I know it has been a few days, but I wanted to take a minute to circle back to the somewhat entertaining and deadly stupid story about the “grudge match” between Cate Hall and Mike Dentale that took place at the Sugarhouse Casino in Philadelphia last weekend. I know you have been wondering what happened because, after all, you only get so many historic moments like this in poker – nay, world – history, so it is important we all absorb the result and understand its meaning.

Photo credit: @EastCoastJoKim on Twitter

Cate Hall swept Mike Dentale, two games to none. It was a best-of-three match, so there was no need to play the third.

Lest we forget how we got to this point, let’s review how, even as grown-ups, we can all have minds that are back in high school.

In December, Cate Hall played in the World Poker Tour Five Diamond World Poker Classic. In one hand, she had A-T, three-bet pre-flop, and then ended up calling a 145,600 chip all-in by Barry Hutter. She lost to his pocket Jacks and found herself nearly down to the felt.

It was a bad move. She understood that. But sometimes you make bad moves in poker. That’s what happens in a game of incomplete information. Hall posted on Twitter, “Just went with a read I was pretty confident of & was wrong. It will look horrible. Now short.”

After someone asked her, with no criticism intended, if there was ever a good time to call off that many chips with A-T. Hall responded that based on the pot odds and her “range assumptions” of her opponent, she thought it was a good call at the time. Later, she wrote:

Last thoughts (I hope) on the matter: Failing spectacularly sometimes is a byproduct of actually trying. I took a long time to make that decision. I knew how horrible it would look. And I did it anyway because I thought it was right. My assumptions might have been wrong. My reads might have been off. But those things can be corrected going forward.

Harder to correct: A tendency to make decisions you think are wrong at the time because you’re worried about looking dumb.

In conclusion: I will sleep just fine tonight, big mistake notwithstanding, and y’all haters can GFY.

That’s a great attitude, frankly. I’m not nearly a good enough poker player to compete in a WPT event, but if I was, I don’t know if I would be able to forget that people would be picking my moves apart on the internet.

At any rate, Mike Dentale, feeling all swole, responded that “this answer proves to me you’re clueless.”

The back and forth that followed:

Mike Dentale: I heard @catehall has been playing well. Funny when the cards don’t go your way you have to rely on skill.

Cate Hall: Bro you do a lot of talking. If you want to play HU tonight or any other time, I’m game.

Hall: so when do you want to play, big man?

Dentale: tomorrow

Hall: name the time, the place, and the stakes

Dentale: I’m back in Newyork , what’s good for you?

Hall: ah, makes a lot more sense that you’d be willing to front like you’d play me HU when you’re across the country

Dentale: stop you’re Killing me…. I can’t breath [sic]

They kept going at it, with Dentale throwing out the classic line, “1- people follow you because you have a vagina, 2,they love to hear you whine about politics 3,when the run good goes it over baby.”

The eventually settled on the terms for the heads-up contest. Best-of-three, $15,000 each, $75/$150 blinds throughout. It was live-streamed on Twitch and filmed for Poker Night in America.

After it was all over and Cate Hall, the 2016 GPI Female Poker Player of the Year, won, she tweeted succinctly, “Who wants next.”

Hall continued over the next couple days, at first showing some humility, but then remembering that Dentale is a guy of whom Donald Trump would say, “Man, slow your roll,” she laid into him some more:

I’m just having fun. obviously result isn’t meaningful & I’m not a world beater at HU. but gotta have fun!

And yeah I got smashed by the deck but just as obviously I’d play infinite HUSNGs with that guy. Feels kinda mean to even say at this point.

But, okay, let me be mean. Bc that dude has been nonstop trashing my game for months. And then showed up like that. He should be ashamed.

I mean a random number generator would have been -135 on him.

That’s some quality shade right there.


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