Scott Zakheim Wins Seniors Title

2017 Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open 
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida 
Event 3
$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em 
Entries: 107
Prize Pool: $27,285
November 16, 2017 

Seniors Champion Scott Zakheim

Scott Zakheim won his first career Seminole Hard Rock trophy on Thursday night in the $300 Seniors No-Limit Hold’em event. At least, it’s the first recorded win here in Hollywood for the South Florida resident.

Zakheim came out on top of a three-way deal with Constantinos Liapis and Jeff Duvall to win $6,262 and the title to best a 107-entry field.

“It feels great,” said Zakheim after his win. “Winning any tournament, I don’t care the size of the tournament, is a good feeling. So, yeah, it’s a good way to start the series.”

Zakheim doesn’t have any recorded wins at what he considers his home casino, but he’s been playing here so long, he thinks that he’s won a couple tournaments in the early days of Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood.

“I think I may have had some other chops and wins, but I think that was before they started recording them,” said Zakheim. “I’ve been playing here a long time. Whenever they opened the Hard Rock, whenever that was, is when I started playing here.”

He dominated the final table and is a regular in the South Florida poker scene, but as much as he plays already, a development in his personal life may allow him to play even more.

“I have a law firm, but I’m going to be retiring and I’m going to be selling my law firm,” said Zakheim. “My passion is poker.”

When they redrew for seats at the final table, Zakheim held a slight chip lead over the rest of the field, but things went right for him early and often. He eliminated Neil Blumenfield in ninth place, who was one of the other big stacks at the table, and he never looked back.

When there were seven players remaining, he held nearly half of the chips in play. He held onto that chip lead all the way to three-handed play, where he made a deal with Liapis and Duvall. Liapis offered up a deal where he and Duvall, the two shorter stacks, each take $5,000 and Zakehim take the rest.

After getting the exact numbers from the tournament staff, all three players agreed to the deal and Zakheim was crowned the champion.

Final Results:

1st: Scott Zakheim – $6,262
2nd: Constantinos Liapis – $5,000
3rd: Jeff Duvall – $5,000
4th: Frank Franze – $1,978
5th: Jerome Hyafil – $1,528
6th: Andrea Orphanos – $1,255
7th: Grady Yeager Jr. – $1,064
8th: Jeff Niedelman – $928
9th: Neil Blumenfield – $819
10th: Woodrow Pass – $723
11th: Gregory Masterson – $723
12th: Paul Balzano – $723
13th: Joseph Hargadon – $641
14th: Angelo Castaldi – $641

Seniors Event: Scott Zakheim Wins in Three-Way Chop

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 21: 5,000/10,000 with a 1,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 107

Scott Zakheim

Scott Zakheim continued to dominate the final table and only increased his stack as the field shrank from seven down to three.

Grady Yeager, Jr. finished in seventh ($1,064), Andrea Orphanos fell in sixth ($1,255), Jerome Hyafil was eliminated in fifth ($1,528) and Frank Franze was the last player eliminated in 4th ($1,978).

When three-handed play began, Zakheim held more than half of the chips in play against Constantinos Liapis and Jeff Duvall. The three players agreed to make a deal and Zakehim takes home the most money, the trophy and the Seniors title.

Zakheim earned $6,262 for his win. Liapis and Duvall each take home $5,000. Liadis gets the better finishing position since he had more chips at the time of the chop.

Constantinos Liapis
Jeff Duvall

A recap will be posted later tonight.

Seniors Event: Scott Zakheim Pulling Away from the Pack

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 19: 3,000/6,000 with a ,000 ante
Players Remaining: 7 of 107

A few levels passed since the Seniors event reached its unofficial final table and Scott Zakheim dominated the early portion of of the final table.

He’s accumulated nearly half of the chips in play with seven players remaining. Zakheim sits with 460,000 of the 1,070,000 chips in play. He came into the redraw with a slight chip lead, but began to pull away with his elimination of Neil Blumenfield in 9th place.

Recent Eliminations:

8th: Jeff Niedelman – $928
9th: Neil Blumenfield – $819
10th: Woodrow Pass – $723

Seniors Event: Constantinos Liadis Doubles Through Jeff Niedelman

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry) 
Level 18: 2,500/5,000 with a 500 ante
Players Remaining: 10 of 107

Constantino Liapis

Constantinos Liapis got all in preflop from under the gun for about 50,000 against Jeff Niedelman in middle position.

It was a flip for Liapis’ tournament life with his ThTd up against Niedelman’s AhJd.

The board ran out Kx8x2xQx2x and despite Niedelman’s request for a 10 on the river, the river was a brick and Liapis doubled up.

Constantinos Liapis – 112,000
Jeff Niedelman – 65,000

Seniors Event: Scott Zakheim Leads Final 10 Players

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry) 
Level 17: 2,000/4,000 with a 500 ante
Players Remaining: 10 of 107

The $300 Seniors no limit hold’em event is down to its final 10 players and they have redrawn for seats at the unofficial final table. When one more player is eliminated, the final nine players will be credited with making the final table.

Here is a look at the seating arrangement and the chip counts for final 10 players:

Seat 1: Neil Blumenfield – 160,000
Seat 2: Jerome Hyafil – 126,500
Seat 3: Jeff Niedelman – 105,500
Seat 4: Jeff Duvall – 108,500
Seat 5: Frank Frunzee – 23,000
Seat 6: Scott Zakheim – 163,000
Seat 7: Andrea Orphano – 79,000
Seat 8: Grady Yeager – 100,000
Seat 9: Constantinos Liapis – 95,000
Seat 10: Woodrow Pass – 118,000

Here are the remaining payouts:

1st: $8,185
2nd: $5,048
3rd: $3,029
4th: $1,978
5th: $1,528
6th: $1,255
7th: $1,064
8th: $928
9th: $819
10th: $723

Seniors Event: Dinner Time Counts

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Returning to Level 13: 800/1,600 with a 200 ante
Players Remaining: 17 of 107

There are 17 players remaining in the Seniors Event as they enjoy their 40-minute dinner break. Grady Yeager is leading the pack with Jeffrey Niedelman and Woodrow Pass rounding out the three players over 100,000.

They’ll return only three eliminations away from making the money.

Top five stacks:

Jeffrey Niedelman – 103,300 (65 bb)
Grady Yeager – 117,100 (73 bb)
Woodrow Pass – 110,000 (69 bb)
Neil Blumenfield – 95,000 (59 bb)
Jerome Hyafilf – 68,500 (43 bb)

Seniors Event: Balzano Doubles Near Dinner

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 12: 600/1,200 with a 200 ante
Players Remaining: 18 of 107

Dealer counts down Paul Balzano’s stack

With time running out before the dinner break, Paul Balzano found a good spot to get his chips in the middle. He three-bet shoved for 15,800 from the hijack after a middle position raise and his opponent thought for a minute before calling.

Balzano: KcKh
Opponent: 4c4s

Balzano was dominant and nothing on the Qh7d3d9c8s changed his fate for the big double.

At an adjoining table, a player was sent out to leave the field with 18 players remaining. Tournament staff paused the clock for a two-table redraw before they play out the final pre-dinner level.

Seniors Event: Payouts Released with $8,185 to the Winner

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 9: 300/600 with a 100 ante
Players Remaining: 36 of 107

Registration closed on the Seniors Event and tournament staff released the prize pool payout information. The tournament officially drew 107 entries to create a prize pool worth $27,285.

The last 14 players will take home some money with a min-cash earning $641 but all are aiming for the $8,185 top prize along with the trophy and custom-framed winner’s photo courtesy if IMPDI.

Seniors Event payouts:

1st: $8,185
2nd: $5,048
3rd: $3,029
4th: $1,978
5th: $1,528
6th: $1,255
7th: $1,064
8th: $928
9th: $819
10th – 12th: $723
13th – 14th: $641

Seniors Event: Registration Closing

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 8: 250/500 with a 75 ante
Entries: 107

Neil Blumenfield (left) and Paul Balzano (right)

The clock is running down for players who want to be a part of the Seniors Event. Ten minutes remain on their break and registration will close when they return.

Neil Blumenfield and Paul Balzano have to deal with each for most of the day as they sit together at a table that will not break anytime soon. Balzano is looking for another SHRP trophy after he already advanced a healthy stack in the Ultimate Re-Entry yesterday. He’s also coming off two big wins after taking the Isle Poker Open Championship title then won the Deep Stack Extravaganza Super Stack event in Vegas a week later.

Seniors Event: Liapis Leads

$300 Seniors 50+ No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Level 6: 150/300 with a 25 ante
Entries: 96

Constantinos Liapis

The Seniors Event is closing in on 100 entries after the first break and it is in fine position to top last year’s number.

Constantinos Liapis is the early leader, going from 10,000 to 53,000 in four levels. He’s followed by Jeffrey Silverstein and Event 2 winner John Binns with Jeff Kessler and 2015 WSOP November Niner Neil Blumenfield also in the mix at the top of the counts.

Top stacks:

Constantinos Liapis – 53,000 (177 bb)
Jeffrey Silverstein – 38,000 (127 bb)
John Binns – 33,600 (112 bb)
Angelo Castaldi – 29,000 (97 bb)
Woodrow Pass – 23,000 (77 bb)
Ira Horowitz – 22,000 (73 bb)
Jeff Kessler – 22,000 (73 bb)
Neil Blumenfield – 21,800 (73 bb)