2018 Rock N’ Roll Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
$360 Big O
Prize Pool: $32,100
November 17, 2018
The 2018 Rock n’ Roll Poker Open is only a few events into the series, but Michael Barry already has had quite a successful series. Just a couple days ago, the Georgia native finished fourth in the $360 HORSE for $2,205.
Just after the clock struck midnight and it was officially Sunday, Barry took down the $360 Big O event for his first victory at his second final table of the series. He defeated a field of 107 entries and earned $7,313 in a heads-up chop with Leif Force.
“It was nice,” said Barry after his victory. “It was nice to take that down. You hear about it all the time. Someone getting close and then getting to knock them out.”
The 15-year veteran of the IT world had never played Big O before the tournament kicked off on Saturday afternoon. He has played plenty of pot-limit Omaha hi-lo before, but he had zero experience with a fifth card.
The mixed games enthusiast understands the general concepts and strategies of split-pot games, but the fifth card took some adjusting to get used to.
“I played tighter,” said Barry. “I definitely played tighter because I started noticing that there are fewer outs than in regular PLO8. That’s it. I just played tighter. And I already play pretty tight.”
Barry certain was patient at the final table and picked his spots carefully. In the beginning of the final table, Force held a commanding chip lead, leaving the other seven players all equally short.
He caught a few timely double ups and then as the table got shorter, he turned up the aggression and went for the win. Barry claims it was just a good rush of cards when he pulled away with a chip lead of his own.
“At the end, I just got a bunch of pocket aces with a deuce or something like that,” he said.
Barry eliminated Sean Troha in third, which gave him a 3-to-2 chip lead over Force at the start of heads-up play. Heads-up play didn’t actually happen, however.
Once Troha hit the rail, Barry offered Force an even chop. Force agreed and since Barry held the chip lead when the deal was struck, he took credit for the win.
If Barry has his way, this won’t be the last time you see him. Barry is truly in love with the game and hopes to play at the game’s highest levels.
“Whenever I’m not working, I’m playing online,” said the 49-year-old. “Like every single day I’m playing poker. I love poker no matter what. I’m trying to get into playing poker professionally one day.”
1st: Michael Barry – $7,313*
2nd: Leif Force – $7,312*
3rd: Sean Troha – $3,975
4th: Michael Perlmutter – $2,800
5th: Jonathan Gold – $2,050
6th: Kevin Love – $1,555
7th: Stephen Allen – $1,230
8th: Stephanie Chung – $1,015
9th: Daniel Pearlman – $880
10th: Michael Bozeman – $880
11th: Robert Mather – $795
12th: Scotter Clark – $795
13th: Justin Foltz – $750
14th: Claudangelo – $750
* denotes numbers reflecting a heads-up deal