All posts by BJ Nemeth

Juan Endara Wins His Long-Awaited First Trophy and $37,828 in the Final Event of RRPO

2019 Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Hollywood, Florida
Event 21
$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed
Entries:  1,258
Prize Pool:  $149,760
December 2-4, 2019

Event 21 Champion - Juan Endara
Event 21 Champion Juan Endara

When the final table of the WPT Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open Championship came to an end Wednesday night, there was still one event waiting to award a trophy — Event 21, $150 No-Limit Hold’em.

This is the kind of event that usually ends in a deal, with a very low buy-in but big prize money and large pay jumps for the final few spots. But there was no deal on this night, and Juan Endara defeated Daniel Le after a lengthy heads-up battle.

“It feels incredible,” said Endara. “I’ve made maybe six final tables, and the best I’ve finished is third place. I’ve gotten sixth a couple times. But this is my first win, and I’m very happy.”

There was a great turnout for this final event, with 1,258 entries in six starting flights over the previous three days, and they created a prizepool worth $149,760. There were 138 players who survived those starting flights to reach Day 2, but only 72 of them would finish in the money.

“It’s a small tournament, a $150 tournament, but you know what? A win is a win,” said Endara. “And it’s nice money. First place is a fantastic return on my money.”

Nice money indeed. Endara won $37,828, which is a 252x return on his $150 buy-in.

When the field got down to five players, there were murmurs about a possible deal, but they died quickly, and then they came up again when it was down to the final three players. But eventual runner-up Daniel Le wanted to keep playing. So they kept playing.

“I know sometimes it makes sense to chop,” said Endara, “and I was considering it, because we were very evenly stacked, and there was high variance. But honestly, I wanted to play.”

Endara was thrilled to win his first trophy in a poker tournament, and was particularly proud that he won it outright, with no deal. And it was his first time playing heads-up in a live tournament.

“I’ve played heads-up online,” said Endara, “but it’s not the same. I think I played well. I made two mistakes — I’m sure I made a lot more, but two that I know of for sure — but I think I played well overall.”

Endara lives in Miami, and has been coming to Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood for about eight years.

“I love the staff,” said Endara. “Honestly, they’re the best around the country. I’ve played up in Atlantic City, I’ve played in Vegas, I’ve played in L.A., and these guys are top notch. Everything about the Seminole Hard Rock is just the best.”


Final Table Results:

1st:  Juan Endara  –  $37,828 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  Daniel Le  –  $21,940
3rd:  William Jennings  –  $14,377
4th:  Salvatore Sollecito  –  $9,660
5th:  Ross Lebo  –  $6,739
6th:  Michael Tait  –  $5,242
7th:  Jose Avila  –  $4,044
8th:  Brooks Long  –  $2,995
9th:  Alcides Gomez  –  $2,097

Event 21: Juan Endara Wins Outright in a Heads-Up Battle Against Daniel Le

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 35: 200,000/400,000 with a 400,000 ante
Players Remaining: 1 of 1,248

Juan Endara
Juan Endara

With the final board showing Ad5h3dQhKh on the river and more than 2.5 million already in the pot, Juan Endara moved all in for about 13 million, dwarfing Daniel Le’s remaining stack of 2,825,000.

Le tanked for a very long time before he called with Kc6c for a rivered pair of kings, but Endara turned over 5d3s to win the pot — and the final RRPO trophy of this series — with a flopped two pair, fives and threes.

Stay tuned for a recap from this final event of the Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open.

1st:  Juan Endara  –  $37,828 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  Daniel Le  –  $21,940
3rd:  William Jennings  –  $14,377
4th:  Salvatore Sollecito  –  $9,660
5th:  Ross Lebo  –  $6,739
6th:  Michael Tait  –  $5,242
7th:  Jose Avila  –  $4,044
8th:  Brooks Long  –  $2,995
9th:  Alcides Gomez  –  $2,097

Daniel Le
Daniel Le

Event 21: Juan Endara Doubles Thru Daniel Le to Take the Lead

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 35: 200,000/400,000 with a 400,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 1,248

Juan Endara
Juan Endara

After a flop of 9d5h3h with 2.1 million already in the pot, Juan Endara checked, Daniel Le bet 525,000, and Endara thought for a while before he check-raised to 1,500,000.

Le took a moment or two to think before moving all in, and Endara stood up and took a deep breath before he said, “I call.”

Le said, “I have a five,” as he showed 5d4s for a pair of fives, and Endara turned over 10s9c for a pair of nines. Endara needed his hand to hold to stay alive.

The turn card was the 8s, the river card was the 7c, and Endara won the pot with his pair of nines to double up into the chip lead.

Juan Endara  –  13,650,000  (34 bb)
Daniel Le  –  5,050,000  (13 bb)

Here are the payouts they’re playing for:

1st:  $37,828 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  $21,940

Event 21: Daniel Le Takes the Heads-Up Lead at the Break

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 35: 200,000/400,000 with a 400,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 1,248

Daniel Le - Heads Up
Daniel Le – Heads Up

Daniel Le raised to 625,000, and Juan Endara called. The flop came KdQd2c, Endara checked, Le bet 525,000, and Endara called.

The turn card was the Ad, and both players checked.

The river card paired the board with the As, Endara checked, Le bet 1,450,000, and Endara tanked for a while before he called. Le showed Ac6s to win the pot with trip aces, and Endara mucked. Le won the pot to nearly tie things up.

Daniel Le  –  8,900,000  (30 bb)
Juan Endara  –  9,800,000  (33 bb)

A few minutes later, in the last hand of Level 34, Juan Endara raised to 850,000, Daniel Le reraised to 2,850,000, and Endara went into the tank for a very long time.

After a while, Endara said, “It’s a flip. A flip situation.”

Eventually, Endara folded, and Le took the pot — and the chip lead. Here are the official chip counts from the break, followed by the remaining payouts:

Daniel Le  –  10,125,000  (25 bb)
Juan Endara  –  8,575,000  (21 bb)

1st:  $37,828 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  $21,940

Event 21: Juan Endara Doubles Thru Daniel Le

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 33: 125,000/250,000 with a 250,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 1,248

Juan Endara
Juan Endara

With the board showing 7h5d4d8h on the turn, Daniel Le checked, Juan Endara bet 1,075,000, and Le tanked for a while before he moved all in.

Endara snap-called all in for 4,250,000 with 6c4c for an eight-high straight, and Le turned over Jh5s for a pair of fives.

Le was drawing dead, and the meaningless river card was the 5c, giving him trips that were still not enough. Endara won the pot with his straight to double up in chips.

Juan Endara  –  11,800,000  (47 bb)
Daniel Le  –  6,900,000  (28 bb)

Event 21: William Jennings – 3rd Place ($9,660)

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 33: 125,000/250,000 with a 250,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 1,248

William Jennings
William Jennings

William Jennings got it all in from the button for about 3.5 million with 4h4d, and he needed his hand to hold to stay alive against the AcKd of Daniel Le in the small blind.

The board came Qc9d5h8dKd, and Le spiked a king on the river to win the pot and eliminate Jennings in third place.

William Jennings  –  Eliminated in 3rd Place  ($14,377)

Here are the approximate chip counts for the start of heads-up play:

Daniel Le  –  12,400,000  (50 bb)
Juan Endara  –  6,300,000  (25 bb)

And the remaining prizepool they’re playing for:

1st:  $37,828 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  $21,940

Event 21: Salvatore Sollecito – 4th Place ($9,660)

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 32: 100,000/200,000 with a 200,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 1,248

Salvatore Sollecito
Salvatore Sollecito

Salvatore Sollecito completed the small blind to 200,000, and Daniel Le checked his option in the big blind.

The flop came 9s9d2c, Sollecito moved all in for about 1.5 million, and Le quickly called with 9c5d for trip nines.

Sollecito said, “I’m drawing dead,” and he turned over 6c2h for two pair, nines and deuces. (Strictly speaking, he wasn’t drawing dead, but he needed to catch both of the last two deuces in the deck — nearly a 1,000-to-1 shot — to stay alive.)

The turn card was the Jc, the river card was the As, and Le won the pot with his trip nines to eliminate Sollecito in fourth place.

Daniel Le  –  5,250,000  (26 bb)
Salvatore Sollecito  –  Eliminated in 4th Place  ($9,660)

With three players remaining, the average chip stack is about 6,250,000 (31 big blinds), and the next player to bust will receive $14,377.

Event 21: Ross Lebo – 5th Place ($6,739)

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 31: 75,000/150,000 with a 150,000 ante
Players Remaining: 4 of 1,248

Salvatore Sollecito
Salvatore Sollecito

William Jennings raised UTG/hijack to 325,000, Salvatore Sollecito called from the cutoff, and Ross Lebo called from the big blind.

The flop came 10c5s4c, and Sollecito got it all in for 1,050,000 with Ac2c (flush draw with a gutshot straight draw). Lebo had 10s8s for a pair of tens, and Jennings folded, saying later that he had ace-queen.

The turn card was the Jc, the river card was the 3c, and Sollecito turned his club flush to win the pot and double up in chips.

Salvatore Sollecito  –  3,300,000  (22 bb)
Ross Lebo  –  1,450,000  (10 bb)

Ross Lebo
Ross Lebo

Juan Endara raised from the button to 400,000, Ross Lebo moved all in for 1,125,000, and Endara checked his own chipleading stack and thought for a bit before he put in his chips and said, “I don’t want to call. I don’t like to call. But I have to call.”

Lebo showed Kh8h, and Endara turned over Kd3s. Lebo was in a dominant position to double up here.

The board came Ah7d3h3c2d — Lebo flopped a heart flush draw, but Endara paired his three on the flop and turned trips to win the pot and eliminate Lebo in fifth place.

Juan Endara  –  7,400,000  (49 bb)
Ross Lebo  –  Eliminated in 5th Place  ($6,739)

With four players remaining, the average chip stack is about 4,675,000 (31 big blinds), and the next player to bust will receive $9,660.

Event 21: Ross Lebo Shoves the River; Juan Endara Leads at the Break

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 31: 75,000/150,000 with a 150,000 ante
Players Remaining: 5 of 1,248

Ross Lebo
Ross Lebo

With the final board showing Jc6h2c6d3d and about 1.7 million already in the pot, Ross Lebo moved all in from the big blind for 1,050,000.

Salvatore Sollecito tanked for a long time in the cutoff before he folded 8s8d face up to forfeit the pot. Lebo took the pot without showing his cards.

Ross Lebo  –  2,750,000  (22 bb)
Salvatore Sollecito  –  4,000,000  (32 bb)

Level 30 comes to an end, and the players take a 10-minute break before the blinds increase to 75,000-150,000 with a 150,000 ante.

Juan Endara
Chipleader Juan Endara

Here are the official chip counts from the break:

Seat 1.  Salvatore Sollecito  –  3,475,000  (23 bb)
Seat 2.  Daniel Le  –  2,150,000  (14 bb)
Seat 3.  Juan Endara  –  6,225,000  (42 bb)
Seat 4.  Ross Lebo  –  2,725,000  (18 bb)
Seat 5.  William Jennings  –  4,125,000  (28 bb)

With five players remaining, the average chip stack is about 3,750,000 (25 big blinds), and the next player to bust will receive $6,739.

Event 21: Michael Tait – 6th Place ($5,242)

$150 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$100,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 30: 75,000/125,000 with a 125,000 ante
Players Remaining: 5 of 1,248

Michael Tait
Michael Tait

Salvatore Sollecito limped under the gun for 125,000, Michael Tait moved all in from the button for about 1.2 million, and William Jennings moved all in over the top from the big blind for 1,525,000.

Sollecito asked for a count of Jenning’s stack, and thinks for a bit before he folds.

Tait turned over Kd7d, and he needed to improve to stay alive against the AcQh of Jennings.

The board came 10h5d4c5c4d, and Jennings won the pot with his ace to eliminate Tait in sixth place.

William Jennings  –  3,050,000  (24 bb)
Michael Tait  –  Eliminated in 6th Place  ($5,242)

With five players remaining, the average chip stack is about 3,745,000 (30 big blinds), and the next player to bust will receive $6,739.