2016 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
Event 1: $360 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Prize Pool: $771,000
July 28 – August 1, 2016
The first tournament on the 2016 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open schedule was a multi-day event which drew a big crowd. When it was all over, Nicholas Mahabee stood alone as the champion after the last six players reached a deal.
The tournament featured six starting flights and the $360 buy-in tournament had a $500,000 guaranteed prize pool. That guarantee was met early Saturday morning and the total entrant count was 2,570 when registration closed on the tournament Saturday evening.
The prize pool reached $771,000 and paid out the final 250 players. They reached the money Sunday afternoon and quickly played down close to the final table. The reached the last ten players in the early morning hours and suspended play for a Monday afternoon restart.
Brian Phillis was the most tenured player at the final table and he hit big last year during this series. He outlasted all but one player in the 2015 $5 Million GTD SHRPO Championship to finish in second place for $575,000. Phillis had a rough time at this final table and finished seventh after a cooler and bad beat.
Vito Polera had an impressive run at the final table to put himself in a position to earn his chop money. He ran his big slick into the aces of Phillis (along with Unique Petiote’s big slick) to leave himself with 550K, less than three big blinds at that point. He didn’t give up, he doubled up several times and held the lead at one point during six-handed play.
As for Mahabee at the final table, we mentioned he needed to do some work to get the title and he did just that. He began play with the shortest stack, doubled three times through Phillis to build himself uip, was second in chips at the first break, and had the lead when they made a deal with six remaining.
This result more than doubles Mahabee’s career tournament earnings but it is his second SHRP title. His first victory came during the $150 buy-in event during the 2013 Seminole Hard Rock “Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open” for just shy of $5,000.
Mahabee is now the proud owner of a second trophy, along with the $66,435 in prize money plus the custom-framed winner’s photo courtesy of Eric Harkins and IMPDI.
Event 1 final table results:
1st: Nicholas Mahabee (Miami, FL) $66,435
2nd: Vito Polera (Coral Springs, FL) $66,435
3rd: Harjinder Chawla (Miami, FL) $66,435
4th: Martin Markov (Key West, FL) $66,435
5th: Tom Gity (Pompano Beach, FL) $66,434
6th: Ryan Brown (Woodstock, GA) $66,434
7th: Brian Phillis (Boynton Beach, FL) $23,901
8th: Jennifer Parker (Palmetto Bay, FL) $16,191
9th: Unique Petiote (Miami Garden, FL) $11,565
10th: Sean Iannucci (Orlando, FL) $7,710