Posts Tagged ‘event’

Brandon Adams Wins Poker Masters Event #4

 Brandon Adams Wins Poker Masters Event #4

The first annual (let’s be optimistic and assume that it will be an annual occurrence) Poker Masters continued on Sunday, as Brandon Adams won the fourth event at ARIA, $ 50,000 No-Limit Hold’em. The $ 819,000 first prize for besting the 39-entry field is the largest of Adams’ career.

Going into Sunday’s Day 2 action, Adams was second of the remaining seven players with 1.187 million chips, trailing only Doug Polk, who had 1.357 million. Also at the final table were Chip Reese’s nephew Zach Clark, Justin Bonomo, David Peters, Jake Schindler, and Steffen Sontheimer, who made it four-for-four in Poker Masters final tables (he won Event #2).

Clark was the first to be eliminated on Sunday and as the seventh place finisher, he was also unfortunately out of the money. Down to his last 79,000 chips, Clark moved all-in pre-flop with K-6. Polk re-raised to get rid of the competition with A-3. Both flopped their best card, but of course that meant Polk still had the better hand. The turn and river were nothing for either player and Clark was out in seventh place.

Shortly thereafter, David Peters raised pre-flop with Aces and Jake Schindler re-raised with A-7 (uh-oh). Peters flat called and flop was dealt A-7-4, all spades (double uh-oh). Peters checked his set and then Schindler shoved for 334,000. Peters called instantly, apparently not at all afraid of a flush (likely because he figured Schindler would slow play it). Again, neither player improved and that was all she wrote for Schindler, the first player to be eliminated in the money.

It took a while, but Sontheimer was next to go, his A-5 losing to Adams’ pocket Fives.

Justin Bonomo was knocked out in fourth place. After Adams raised to 75,000 pre-flop, Bonomo went all-in for 770,000 with A-3 suited. Adams called with pocket Sevens and though Bonomo was able to pair his 3 on the turn, that wasn’t good enough to overcome Adams’ better pair.

Heads-up was determined when Adams raised to 90,000 pre-flop with A-K, Polk re-raised to 260,000 with Aces, and then Peters moved all-in for 545,000 with pocket Eights. Adams thought about it for some time and then decided to also go all-in. Polk made the auto-call.

The board came down Q-J-7-7-Q, knocking out Peters and allowing Polk to double through Adams. Polk went into heads-up play with a 2.955 million to 1.920 million chip lead.

Adams quickly took over the lead – basically reversing the chip counts – when he picked up a boatload of chips when his 5-2 was golden on a J-5-5 board. Polk had J-8 and was unable to get away from the hand until the river.

It didn’t take long after that, as Adams extended his lead. On the final hand, Polk raised pre-flop to 80,000 with 5-4 of diamonds and Adams called with 9-7 of diamonds. The flop was very interesting – K-8-6, the latter two diamonds, giving both players flush and straight draws. The two men got into a raising war at that point, with Adams ending up calling Polk’s all-in. The 2 of diamonds was dealt on the turn, giving both a flush, but Adams’ flush was better. Polk’s one-outer straight flush did not materialize on the river and Brandon Adams emerged triumphant.

Steffen Sontheimer is still the Poker Masters money leader after four events with $ 1.221 million in winnings, followed by Bryn Kenney with $ 1.085 million, Nick Schulman with $ 918,000, and Brandon Adams with $ 819,000.

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2017 WPT Borgata Poker Open Main Event Day 1A – Trung Pham Rockets to Front

 2017 WPT Borgata Poker Open Main Event Day 1A – Trung Pham Rockets to Front

The World Poker Tour (WPT) is back in action this week with a stop in Atlantic City with the WPT Borgata Poker Open Main Event (I’ll be honest – I actually double-checked to see if it was the Borgata Winter Poker Open because I apparently don’t understand calendars). The first of two starting flights drew 283 entries, so it will take a big leap to surpass last year’s field of 1,179. It could very well happen, though, as a) the second of two starting flights is always the bigger one, and b) there are unlimited re-entries through Level 10, which will be mid-Tuesday afternoon. With a relatively affordable $ 3,500 buy-in, there are plenty of opportunities for the field to balloon.

The chip leader after Day 1A is Trung Pham, who has 327,300 chips. He is light years ahead of the second place Allan Rabinowitz, who is holding onto 207,500 chips at day’s end. One of the hands that helped Pham get to where he is now happened during Level 7, the second-to-last level of the day.

Pham raised to 1,600 chips pre-flop (blinds and antes were 300/600/100) and Johanssy Joseph called. The player on the button (according to, this person was nameless) shoved for 14,200, prompting Pham to re-raise to 27,800, perhaps trying to force Joseph out of the hand and take on the button one-on-one. Joseph wasn’t going anywhere, though. In fact, he raised all-in for 61,700 chips. Pham called, putting both of his opponents at risk.

It was an interesting call, as Pham held T-9 of hearts. Joseph had pocket Nines and the button had pocket Tens, taking away all of Pham’s pairing outs (though if Joseph and the button had higher pairs, it wouldn’t have mattered that much, anyway). Pham was looking for a flush or straight at this point.

The flop of Q-7-2 with one heart wasn’t particularly useful to Pham, but then the poker gods spoke, presenting him with a 6 on the turn and an 8 on the river for the runner-runner straight. He eliminated two players in a single hand and grew his stack to 200,000 chips, good enough for the chip lead at that time. Clearly, he turned on the jets after that to increase his stack by more than 60 percent by the end of the night.

Day 1B, which just recently got underway, will follow the same schedule as Day 1B in the name of fairness. Again, players can re-enter as much as they would like – this is a WPT event, after all – so expect some bloated registration numbers today. The survivors from the two starting flights, plus late entrants, will come together on Tuesday for Day 2.

2017 World Poker Tour Borgata Poker Open – Day 1A Chip Leaders

1. Trung Pham – 327,300
2. Allan Rabinowitz – 207,500
3. Joe Elpayaa – 181,600
4. Erik Cajelais – 169,900
5. Brandon Seo – 161,200
6. Dean Hutchison – 151,200
7. Matthew Silberzweig – 148,200
8. Shaun Deeb – 141,000
9. Michael Gagliano – 127,000
10. Reinaldo Troconis – 109,800

Featured photo credit: Giron

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Bryn Kenney Defeats Erik Seidel to Capture Event #3 of 2017 Poker Masters

 Bryn Kenney Defeats Erik Seidel to Capture Event #3 of 2017 Poker Masters

After battling through a heads-up match that was almost as long as the final table itself, Bryn Kenney defeated Poker Hall of Famer Erik Seidel to capture Event #3 of the 2017 Poker Masters at ARIA in Las Vegas.

The 48 entries garnered in Event #3 was the lowest so far in the Poker Masters schedule, meaning that only the final table would be paid in the tournament. It also meant that the $ 960,000 first place prize was the largest of the tournament so far. At the start of the day, Kenney was in the middle of the pack and Seidel was on the short stack, both looking up at Dan Smith and his 1.982 million stack.

Seidel was in “push and pray” mode from the start, his 221K in chips extremely short, so seeing any Ace would obligate the Hall of Famer to move all in. In a solo big blind after the elimination of Steffen Sontheimer on Friday night, Doug Polk moved all in to put the pressure on Seidel. Seidel squeezed out an A-8 off suit and decided to stand, calling off his chips and in the lead against Polk’s Q 3. An Ace on the flop allowed Seidel to breathe a bit easier and, after a blank for Polk came on the turn to leave him drawing dead, Seidel was back in the game.

The first elimination came only 10 minutes into the day’s play. Jake Schindler put out a bet, only to be met by Sergio Aido’s all-in move out of the small blind. After getting a count, Schindler decided to put Aido at risk for elimination and called. Both men were off to the races, with Aido’s pocket sixes holding the pre-flop edge over Schindler’s A♣ J♣, but the statistical edge flipped to Schindler on a 2♠ 9♣ 5♣ flop. Aido dodged a club on the K♠ turn, but the Q♣ on the river gave Schindler the suck out and the knockout, sending Aido from the felt in seventh place.

Seidel continued to be active and Schindler was his next target. In a cooler of a hand, Schindler raised the betting and Seidel all in three bet the action. Schindler didn’t waste time in making the call, turning up pocket Jacks for battle, but Seidel had the goods this time with pocket Kings. The ten-high flop missed both men, so Seidel’s cowboys reigned as he crept up the leaderboard.

To this point, Kenney had been very quiet as his chip stack dwindled. Kenney only held about 14 big blinds after giving up a hand to Polk, but it was a situation that he soon would rectify. Kenney would get a double through Smith when he flopped a set of sixes, turned a full house and rivered quads. On the very next hand, however, he was almost out of the tournament.

Kenney would initiate the action from the hijack, only to see Polk push out a three bet of 175K from the cutoff. Undaunted, Seidel on the button four-bet all in the action to 480K, but his young counterparts didn’t show any respect. Kenney moved all in over Seidel in an attempt to isolate, but Polk saw a chance to eliminate two difficult opponents. He called both all-ins with his big stack, sending the players to the flop with these hands:

Kenney:  pocket Queens
Polk:  pocket tens
Seidel:  pocket Aces

The J-K-6 somehow missed all three players and the King would pair on the turn. With Polk looking for a ten to eliminate two players and Kenney looking to snatch a massive pot with another lady, the innocuous river four gave the 1.5 million chip pot – and the chip lead – to Seidel, while Kenney picked up scraps from the side pot with Polk.

Now it was Kenney’s turn to head to the salt mines and rebuild his stack. He doubled through Cary Katz and Polk to get some of it back, then pulled off an excellent play against Schindler to get back in the game. After a Schindler raise holding A-10 in a “blind versus blind” situation, Kenney sneakily just called with pocket Aces. The case Ace came on the A-3-2 flop and Kenney, with a hammerlock on the hand, would just call a bet from Schindler. Schindler, smelling a trap, slowed down and check-called a bet from Kenney on the Queen turn, but he couldn’t get away from the hand. Kenney would bet again on the river after a Schindler check and, after he called, Kenney showed the goods and picked up the nearly million chip pot.

Seidel and Kenney then went on the attack. Seidel would take out Katz in sixth place and Schindler in third, while Kenney handled Polk in fifth place and Smith in fourth to reach the heads-up battle. As the twosome headed to their mano y mano matchup, Kenney held a 500K chip lead over Seidel.

Kenney was able to push Seidel to the brink within 20 minutes of the start of action, but Seidel would prove to be resilient. He would double up SIX times to get back in the match and took over the lead in the tournament with a seventh. But Kenney wasn’t ready to quit either, getting a double of his own as the jousting continued.

As the players sat very close together in the chip counts, the penultimate hand fell. After an adjustment in the structure to allow the blinds to move up every 15 minutes, Kenney raised the betting and Seidel moved all in, which Kenney called. His pocket sixes were in the pre-flop lead over Seidel’s J♠ 10♠ and stayed in that spot after the 2-A-5 flop. A King on the turn brought some drama as it added four more outs to Seidel’s six pre-flop outs, but the river five saw the huge pot pushed to Kenney and Seidel left with scraps. Although Seidel would get a couple of double ups to extend the inevitable, he would eventually be eliminated in second place as Kenney captured another High Roller title for the year.

1. Bryn Kenney, $ 960,000
2. Erik Seidel, $ 576,000
3. Jake Schindler, $ 312,000
4. Dan Smith, $ 192,000
5. Doug Polk, $ 144,000
6. Cary Katz, $ 120,000
7. Sergio Aido, $ 96,000

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Steffen Sontheimer Grabs Event #2, Overall Series Lead at 2017 Poker Masters

 Steffen Sontheimer Grabs Event #2, Overall Series Lead at 2017 Poker Masters

The inaugural Poker Masters is in full swing this weekend, wrapping up the second of its five-event schedule on Friday night. In Event #2, a $ 50,000 buy-in No Limit Hold’em event, Germany’s Steffen Sontheimer captured the victory and the overall lead on the Poker Masters “Player of the Series” race.

50 entrants had been whittled down to the final seven on Friday afternoon, with two men making their second trip to a final table in as many events. Not only was Sontheimer on the felt, but Spain’s Adrian Mateos joined the final seven as well. Those two men were mired in the middle of the pack to start the final day, however, as Christian Christner, Fedor Holz and Tom Marchese were all over a million chips each. Behind them, 14-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth and current Player of the Year leader Bryn Kenney tried to get into the game.

Kenney was the first to depart the festivities only 20 minutes into the day. Pushing off the button for his remaining 350K in chips, Kenney was looked up by Sontheimer in the “sheriff” role. Kenney got his chips in good, his pocket sixes running against Sontheimer’s A-7 off suit, but it wasn’t to be. An Ace fell on the flop and, looking for one of the final two sixes in the deck, Kenney instead saw a Jack (that increased Kenney’s chances of survival to a Broadway straight for the chop) on the turn and a five on the river that sent him to the rail in seventh place.

Sontheimer continued his offensive in taking down Mateos next. Once again, Mateos got it in good with pocket sevens, but Sontheimer’s A-Q once again found an Ace on the flop. After a Jack and a nine completed the board, Mateos was out the door in sixth place and Sontheimer was the new chip leader with almost two million chips.

Christner could never find any traction at the final table. His stack slowly bled through his fingers and, although he did double through Sontheimer at one point, it only served to redistribute the chips around the table. On his final hand, Christner found pocket Jacks to his liking and made his stand by going to the races against Holz’s Big Slick. All the drama was removed again when an Ace came on the flop and, after no Knave came on the turn or river, Christner was out in fifth place and Holz took over the chip lead.

For his part, Hellmuth was a placid lake during his stay at the final table. That was probably because he didn’t have anything to play, pushing his short stack to the center with an A-10 off suit that he knew would be racing at the minimum. Marchese, another player who was quiet for the duration of the final table, found his one moment in the sun in calling Hellmuth’s all in with pocket sixes. A six on the flop shot Hellmuth down immediately and, once the turn was dealt, Hellmuth was out. After the formality of the river completed the board, Hellmuth was out in fourth and off to Event #3 on the Poker Masters schedule.

Marchese was shot down only 20 minutes after his elimination of Hellmuth and, as seemed to be the case for the majority of the all-ins at the final table, Marchese led pre-flop. His A♠ J♠ led Holz’s A♣ 10♣ before the flop spoke; when it came down 7♣ J♣ 9♣, all discussion ended as Holz flopped the stone nuts and Marchese began packing his bags, eliminated in third place.

When heads up play began, it was thought to be a formality. Holz’s 5.444 million chip stack dwarfed that of Sontheimer (810K), but 30 minutes of action saw Sontheimer pull his way back into the match, 2.56 million chips to Holz’s 3.69 million. Sontheimer clawed his way into the lead by bluffing Holz off a hand and, once in the driver’s seat, refused to give up the steering wheel.

On the final hand, Holz made a minimal raise and was met with an all-in from Sontheimer. Holz called off his stack and showed a K-J off suit for battle, normally good except when it runs into an A-J, which is what Sontheimer held. The seven high, four club board saw Sontheimer improve to the nut flush against Holz’s second nut flush, ending the tournament in Sontheimer’s favor.

1. Steffen Sontheimer, $ 900,000
2. Fedor Holz, $ 550,000
3. Tom Marchese, $ 300,000
4. Phil Hellmuth, $ 200,000
5. Christian Christner, $ 175,000
6. Adrian Mateos, $ 150,000
7. Bryn Kenney, $ 125,000

(Dan Shak, eliminated eighth on Thursday night, collected $ 100,000 for his finish)

With the win, Sontheimer seizes control of the “Player of the Series” race. The win, plus his $ 1.104 million in earnings during the 2017 Poker Masters schedule, puts him in first place on the leaderboard. With three events to go, however, it is still anyone’s Poker Masters Purple Jacket to grab onto.

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Nick Schulman Takes First Poker Masters Event at ARIA

 Nick Schulman Takes First Poker Masters Event at ARIA

Poker professional Nick Schulman earned the second biggest cash of his career on Thursday night, winning the inaugural event of the 2017 Poker Masters at ARIA in Las Vegas.

With the ground unbroken on a series like this, many of the viewers on the rail, on the streaming feed from PokerGO and even the competitors themselves were unsure of how the Poker Masters series would be received. There were also some other differences on the Poker Masters tournaments that many had to get a grasp on. The seven handed tables featured a new dynamic, along with the 30 second shot clock. Finally – and for some players a big difference – no headphones or sunglasses were allowed at the tables.

The player turnout was probably the least dramatic occurrence. The tables were replete with some of the biggest names in the poker world from the starting gun on Wednesday, making it a joy for poker fans to watch. Erik Seidel, Fedor Holz, Steffen Sontheimer, Ben Lamb, Adrian Mateos, Daniel Negreanu and Bryn Kenney (among others) were staking out their own patch of felt as the call for “shuffle up and deal” rang through the ARIA tournament room.

With 125,000 chips to start with, the potential for players to have to use their one re-entry (more on this in a moment) was slim. That wasn’t true for Dan Smith, however, as he lost all but 12,000 of his chips when Jake Schindler hit a set of Queens over his pocket Aces within an hour of the start of the event (the remainder would go soon afterwards). That was fast, but Stefan Schillhabel went Smith one better in betting his pocket Kings all-in against Issac Haxton. Haxton had the goods with his pocket Aces and made the call, knocking Schillhabel out only five hands into the tournament. Both utilized their one re-entry, however, and went back into the fray.

By the end of Day 1, the inaugural Poker Masters event brought in 51 entries and set a final table that included Schulman and Mateos. Schillhabel made the most of his re-entry, scraping into the seven-handed final table as the short stack, while Matt Hyman and Sontheimer led the way with their 1.46 million and 1.255 million stacks, respectively. Dominik Nitsche and Koray Aldemir rounded out the final table as they reconvened on Thursday afternoon.

The beginning of the final table action was as frenetic as the start of the tournament on Wednesday. Schillhabel doubled on the first hand of action, his A-2 standing up against Mateos’ Q-7, as Mateos tumbled to the basement of the leaderboard. That time in the basement lasted all of one hand as, on the very next hand, Mateos pushed all in with a Q-J off suit. He was looked up by Nitsche’s pocket sixes out of the small blind and, initially, it looked good for Mateos. The 10-4-J flop caught his hand but, just as easily as it came, the lead was sucked away when a six came on the turn to give Nitsche an unbeatable set. Drawing dead, Mateos was already shaking hands with his fellow pros when a ten hit the river to send him home in seventh place.

The action only ramped up from that point. Sontheimer took over the lead after he eliminated Aldemir, his Q♠ 10♠ dominating Aldemir’s 9♠ 8♠, in sixth place and bounced Nitsche out in fifth place after his A-3 held over Nitsche’s 6 5. That lead would be short-lived, however, when he clashed with Schulman in a hand that would change the course of the tournament.

With a board of 5 A 7 4♣ 8 and nearly 1.5 million chips in the center, Schulman would check his option, only to see Sontheimer put him to the test with an all-in river move. Schulman went through his 30 second clock and tossed in an extension chip before coming to a decision by calling for his tournament life. It turned out to be the right call as Sontheimer showed an A♠ J♠ for a pair of Aces; Schulman let out a sigh of relief as he showed a 10 7♥ for the four-flush, taking the monster pot and taking over the chip lead.

Schulman would not be stopped after that. He soon after eliminated Sontheimer in fourth and Schillhabel in third, reaching heads up with a very-quiet Hyman holding over a two million chip lead. Hyman put up a fight, however, flipping the script on Schulman when he hit a set on the river to make a boat against Schulman’s flopped trip Aces to take over the lead. Schulman fought back to retake the lead but, just as quickly, Hyman would leap back over Schulman to take over the top slot as Level 27 (50K/100K blinds, 100K ante) began.

Only 20 minutes after the level up, Schulman retook the lead when his A-8 hit against Hyman’s K-10 on a 6-J-A-8-10 board. Five minutes later, though, Hyman would flip the standings when he doubled through Schulman. The players had to get to nearly even in stacks before the penultimate hand would be played.

After Hyman raised the betting to 310K holding an A 8, Schulman pushed the action with an all-in three bet while holding Big Slick. Hyman called off his lesser stack and the duo went to what would be a dramatic flop. A Q♠ 7 5 flop kept Schulman in the lead, but he didn’t feel greatly confident as Hyman sat four to a diamond nut flush. A 5♠ on the turn kept the status quo and the Ace on the river gave both men a pair of Aces. Schulman’s King kicker, however, was the difference as he took the hand and the championship of Event #1.

1. Nick Schulman, $ 918,000
2. Matt Hyman, $ 561,000
3. Stefan Schillhabel, $ 306,000
4. Steffen Sontheimer, $ 204,000
5. Dominik Nitsche, $ 178,500
6. Koray Aldemir, $ 153,000
7. Adrian Mateos, $ 127,500

(Negreanu, eliminated on the final table bubble on Wednesday night, earned $ 102,000 for his eighth-place finish)

The Poker Masters series is a combination of five “High Roller” type events. The first four tournaments will all be a $ 50,000 buy-in event with a single re-entry, offering the potential for huge prize pools to be built. The Championship Event will be a $ 100,000 buy-in with unlimited re-entries. Over the next week, these tournaments will roll out under the streaming eye of the PokerGO cameras, providing the “dog days” of summer in the poker world with some action on the tables.

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