Local Kevin Elia from Baltimore took home more than $55k and the first-ever main event poker title to come out of the state of Maryland. Kevin battled a field of 131 players in the Maryland Live! Poker Classic $3,500 main event. Kevin played a solid 3 days of poker outlasting some great local talent along the lines of Christian Harder, Anthony Gregg, James St. Hilaire, Richard Smith, and World Series Main Event Champion Greg Merson. It was a roller-coaster ride for Kevin who found himself the chip leader at the final table when discussing an 8-way chop. When all the numbers were written down Kevin agreed to take home $50k for being the chip leader and then all 8 players agreed to play a $1k sit and go for the trophy and then title of Maryland Live! Poker Classic Main Event Champ. After all eight had taken their seats in the sit and go it fired off, dropping one by one until only Kevin was left standing. All 10 players who made the final table were locals from the Maryland and Virginia area. This was a great success for Maryland Live! Casino and poker in the state of Maryland. Be on the lookout for a repeat victory from Kevin when Mayland Live hosts another tournament series in July 2014.
The $1100 Main Event with a Guarantee of $150,000 had 204 players. We saw a variety of New England tournament players such as Tarun Gulati, Thomas Hogland, Raj Patel, Mark Epstein, Stacey Sullivan and many tournament players participate in the Spring Showdown’s main event.
On day 2, a total of 48 players remained and at closing we saw Linsford “Teddy” Geddes taking home the 1st place prize of $47,787.
Rebecca Carabino, Mohegan Sun’s Tournament Director, is working on the Summer Showdown series which will begin in late July 2014.
Robert ‘Uncle Krunk’ Panitch earned his second WSOP Circuit ring the hard way—after a record-setting heads-up match that lasted nearly ten and a half hours. The win was good for $137,283.
The 62-year-old from Northbrook, IL, came out on top of a field of 416 entries to lock up a repeat appearance in the National Championship. “I’m not even tired...this woke me up!” he commented shortly after the win. “I want to be mentioned in the same breath as Stan Musial”. “I started out winning every hand,” he said referring to his quick dispatching of the 4th and 3rd place finishers about ten hours earlier.
The heads-up match lasted so long, it gave Panitch “enough opportunities to catch a card” he said. “I’ve blown so many big stacks lately”. On Friday, the first starting flight of the Main Event, Panitch was at the final table of Event 8, practically tied for the chip lead with three players remaining. An ill-timed bluff cost him his stack and he busted out of that event in 3rd place. He went straight to the cage and entered the Main Event and the rest is history.
Largest Field in Five Years!
Canterbury Park hosted the annual Minnesota State Poker Championship. The tournament had 217 entrants with a total prize pool of $210,490.00. After two Day 1’s, Scott Carolan of Farmington MN took home the trophy, $54,728.00, and the title of Minnesota State Poker Champion. Scott was undoubtedly assisted by his lucky “Minnesota Poker Hall of Fame” T- shirt.
The first-ever WSOP Circuit ring awarded at Lumière Place Casino in St. Louis goes to Matt Bond of Irving, Texas for winning the opening event,$580 No Limit Hold’em.(Matt’s first name is Justin,but he goes by middle name Matt.) He came to the final table second in chips and battled headsup for nearly two hours before getting the last of Peter Nigh’s chips with A9 dominating Nigh’s A3.Bond collected $17,779 for the win. Nigh, who was the chip leader at the start of the final table, picked up $10,989 for second place.
This event drew 127 entrants for a total prize pool of $63,500. The final 15 players got paid. Two time WSOP Circuit ring winner Tim Vance was in the starting field along with Palm Beach Kennel Club Casino Champion Jeff Gunnip and single ring owner DJ MacKinnon.They all failed to make the money. None of the player sat the final table owned any WSOP or Circuit bling.
Tran has won quite a bit playing tournament poker over the years, and his career earnings now stand at $11,214,250 according to Hendon Mob poker database. He now has 14 cashes at WPT events and he has won $3,440,918 on tour (12th all-time), but this cash so close to home has to mean a lot, even to a poker player who has accomplished so much in his career.
At a certain point Tran began building a dominant chip lead and it proved too much to overcome, even after Harwell doubled up on the 198th hand of play. On Hand 207 Tran knocked Harwell below 10 big blinds, and a short time later it was over.
On Hand 211 Harwell moved all in preflop for 1,125,000 and Tran called. The two players tabled their hands and Tran had the lead with K♦4♣ over Harwell’s 8♠5♠. The final board was dealt 6♣4♠2♦10♥9♥ and Tran won his second WPT title. Harwell was eliminated in second place after a solid run in the tournament and he took home $200,030 for his impressive play at the final table.
Tran adds $302,750 to his sizable career earnings. He also gets a $15,400 seat in the season-ending WPT World Championship, a special edition pair of 24K Monster headphones, and his name will go on the WPT Champions Cup for the second time. Congratulations to JC Tran on the hometown victory. The next tour stop will be the WPT Jacksonville bestbet Open that runs from March 21-25.
After a tough three-day battle at Fallsview Casino, Matthew Lapossie from London, Ontario, emerged victorious from the final table as the 2014 Fallsview Poker Classic WPT $5,000 Main Event champion on Monday, earning first prize of CAD $363,197.
Lapossie will forever be part of the WPT Champions Club as he etches his name onto the prestigious WPT® Champions Cup. The final table took just over nine hours to play from ten players down to a winner. Toronto’s Dylan Wilkerson collected the CAD $254,238 second-place prize and Mississauga’s Jason James finished third taking home CAD $163,439 for his efforts.
The $550 No Limit Hold’em WPT Main Event attracted an entry field of 383 players and a prize pool of CAD $1,729,510 with 45 players making the money.
2nd place Jonathan Gaviao just misses becoming first player to win two Circuit Main Events in the same season
Shortly before Christian Pham took his seat in the Caesars Palace Las Vegas Circuit Main Event, he and his friends had a Chinese dinner that ended with a fortune cookie. That fortune cookie read, “All your dreams will come true.” That cookie sure wasn’t lying.
Just a few days ago, Christian Pham was home in St Paul, Minnesota with no intention of playing poker in Sin City. However, he got a call from a backer offering to put him into the Circuit event and fly him out to boot. On a single day’s notice, Pham hopped a plane to Vegas with hope of making his poker dreams come true. Today, he did just that, winning the Circuit Main Event here in Las Vegas, earning $214,332, the Circuit ring, and a seat into the 2014 WSOP National Championship in Las Vegas.
During the 2011/12 Circuit season Huy Quach rose to the top of a 748-player field and laid claim to the first ever World Series of Poker Circuit ring offered at the Bicycle Casino in Los Angeles, California.
Fast-forward two years later and Quach was able to once again rise to the top of the first event on the schedule to earn his second Circuit ring and $18,000 in first-place prize money.
“There were several short stacks,” Quach recalled about the final table after his victory. “It was fun. It was fun but it was not easy.” There were indeed several short-stacked players who returned for the second day of play.
These short stacks fell one after the other, allowing the final table to wrap up in around four and a half hours. Before he knew it, Quach was heads up with the chip lead against Mike Maarup. It was here, however, where the pace of the final table would slow down.
The $1,650 No Limit Hold’em event in the 2014 CCPT Events at Foxwoods Resort Casino, had 340 entrants start play on Friday and Saturday, battling it out for a piece of the $494,700 prize pool.
One hundred and six started play at noon on Sunday, narrowing the field to thirteen by the end of the night. The final thirteen started play at noon on Monday with it taking forty minutes to reach the final table.
Play continued for another thirteen hours which included four hours of heads-up action. The final two agreed to a chop, and after several hands Chris Tryba of North Las Vegas, NV collected $91,346 for 2nd, while Ron Pease of Glastonbury, CT was crowned the $1,650 Main Event Champion, earning $91,347, and the Championship Trophy.