Deja Vu: Jason Mercier Wins a SHRP High Roller While Wife Natasha Is Seven Months Pregnant, Just as He Did Two Years Ago

2019 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Hollywood, Florida
Event 18
$50,000 Super High Roller (Single Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed
Entries:  41
Prize Pool:  $1,988,500
August 8-9, 2019

Natasha and Jason Mercier
Natasha and Jason Mercier

Two years ago, Jason Mercier’s wife Natasha was seven months pregnant when he entered the $25K High Roller at the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown, and Mercier won that event — his last tournament victory before he pulled back from the tournament circuit to focus on fatherhood.

Yesterday, Jason Mercier’s wife Natasha was seven months pregnant when he entered the $50K Super High Roller, and today Mercier steamrolled the final table with an overwhelming chip stack to win $715,860.

“We’ve been talking about that the whole time,” said Mercier after his victory. “Even before the event, Natasha said, ‘I’m seven months pregnant. This is exactly when you won the $25K two years ago, so you have to win the $50K.'” Mercier added, “It’s kind of weird that it actually happened this way. I wish she could always be seven months pregnant, but I don’t think she wants that.”

Jason Mercier and His Father
Jason Mercier grew up in nearby Davie, Florida, and his father Rick was here today to watch him win one of his many poker titles.

With 41 entries, this was the biggest $50K Super High Roller in the history of Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood, creating a total prizepool of $1,988,500 that nearly doubled the $1 million guarantee.

Mercier entered the seven-handed final table with nearly a 5-to-1 chip lead over everyone else, and none of the other players ever acquired enough chips to pose much of a threat.

The key hand for Mercier came last night to burst the Money Bubble. Mercier raised, and Dan Shak — who was second in chips at the time — reraised. Mercier called and the flop came As4h2c. Shak shoved with KsKc, and Mercier thought for a bit before calling with AhJh. The best hand held up for Mercier to eliminate Shak and end Day 1 with a monstrous chip lead.

Today’s final table was a quick one, finished in a little more than 90 minutes, with the other six players effectively battling for second place. Franklin Fok knocked out Tom Boivin in third place to get heads-up against Mercier, though Fok was still down nearly 7-to-1 in chips. In the ninth hand of heads-up play, Fok got it all in with AsJs, but never improved against Mercier’s 5d5c.

“I won a ton of hands that I probably shouldn’t have, just because of stack sizes,” said Mercier. “I had over half the chips in play when we were seven handed, so I was playing a ton of hands and just taking advantage of spots. But I also got dealt really good hands, and was able to call all ins when I was in the big blind, and those hands won.”

Mercier has won more than $19.5 million in live tournaments over his career, but this was actually his first cash in nearly a year as he’s been spending most of his time with his wife Natasha and two-year-old son, Marco. “I didn’t realize it until I got in the money,” said Mercier. “I hadn’t cashed in a year, so this was a really nice one to win.”

Jason Mercier and Son Marco
Jason Mercier plays with his two-year-old son Marco shortly after his victory.

Final Results:

1st:  Jason Mercier  –  $715,860
2nd:  Franklin Fok  –  $457,355
3rd:  Tom Boivin  –  $288,330
4th:  Giuseppe Iadisernia  –  $198,850
5th:  Manig Loeser  –  $139,195
6th:  Sam Sweilem  –  $109,370
7th:  Albert Daher  –  $79,540