Event 10: Brian Altman Wins First Leg of the Big 4, Scores $118,157

2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open 
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino 
Hollywood, FL
Event #10 | The Big 4
$1,100 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Entries: 633
Prize Pool: $633,000
August 9-15, 2017

Champion Brian Altman

There was a total of 633 entries in this first leg of the Big 4, a $1,100 No Limit Hold’em Re-Entry tournament. The starting field contained plenty of the usual suspects, including Seminole Hard Rock Poker team members Darryll Fish, Sheddy Siddiqui, Jessica Dawley, Faraz Jaka, Stewart Newman, and Matt Affleck. In the end, it was Massachusetts pro Brian Altman who bested them all earning $118,157.

Sean Perry who was the long standing chip leader on Day 2 took his massive advantage into the 10-handed final table. He played two huge hands with Altman that culminated in Perry’s exit in 10th place. From there, the event wrapped and returne for a third and final day of play Tuesday in Hard Rock Live where it was live streamed and filmed for later airing by Poker Night in America.

Altman took Perry’s chips and put them to good use as he entered the final playing session in first place. Marc MacDonnell was the only other player to have a seven-figure stack. Joe Kuether who came into the final table with the third biggest stack ended up finishing in eigth place ($15,749). Kuether was multi-tabling between the other Big 4 final table he made, the $5,250 SHRPO Championship event where he went on to finish ninth.

“My plan wasn’t to get in as many big pots as I did,” Altman said. “I was chipping away at first. I got involved in some all-in pots. I won some I lost some.”

Altman started off by doubling up Nick Chiappetta and Nigel Murray early on. He went on to take Murray out in sixth place ($23,782) when he hit his open-ended straight draw. Next on his hit list was Jewook Oh in fifth place ($29,605) when Altman hit a pair of sevens with 7s6s against Oh’s Ad5d.

Altman proved he’s willing to take a risk when he called for his tournament life three-handed, even though Phong Nguyen begged him not to.

“I got in a really huge spot with a gutter and a flush draw and I ended up going with it and was lucky enough to hit it on the river,” Altman said of the hand.

The action moved rather quickly after that. Altman won a flip with pocket tens against MacDonnell’s ace-queen to knock him out in third place ($53,349).

Heads up only lasted one hand, at the commencement Phong Nguyen had only 570,000 to Altman’s 9,000,000. Phong alluded to the fact it was Altman’s tournament to lose. Altman laughed and then they got it all in with Altman’s Jh7h against Nguyen’s Kd6h. It was time for Altman to get lucky again when he spiked a jack on the flop.

Altman said, “I’ve always loved coming down here to Seminole Hard Rock. I’ve had success here in the past and the Big 4 set up in really cool. There’s electricity in the air, it’s cool to be apart of.”

Altman won the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Lucky Hearts Poker Open Championship in 2015 scoring $723,008. He’s since went on to have three more final table showings and Seminole Hard Rock Poker events including today’s win.

Here’s a look at the final table results:

1st:  Brian Altman  –  $118,157
2nd: Phong Nguyen  –  $82,834
3rd: Marc MacDonnell  –  $53,349
4th: Nigel Murray  –  $38,581
5th: Jewook  Oh  –  $29,605
6th: Nick Ahmadi  –  $23,782
7th: Nick Chiappetta –  $19,762
8th: Joe Kuether  –  $15,749
9th: Phil Rigby  –  $11,818