2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino
$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
Prize Pool: $1,586,500
August 3 – 7, 2017
The 2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open series kicked things off with a huge-field, big-prize tournament. The $1,000,000 guaranteed tournament pushed over that mark to put more than $1,500,000 up for grabs and it was poker pro Nipun Java walking away with the lion’s share in the end.
The tournament started with a great showing in the first of six flights and never slowed down. Nearly 1,500 entries were put in the game in the last two flights and it finished with a total of 3,173 when registration closed. They combined to create a prize pool worth $1,586,500 with the last 300 players earning a piece and the winner set to take home more than $270,000.
More than 600 players returned for Day 2 and Paul Kelly led the way with the biggest stack. Those chips helped produce a deep run but he went out in 37th place, short of the last four tables. Seminole Hard Rock Poker team members Loni Harwood, Michael Laake, and Sheddy Siddiqui cashed in the tournament along with Seminole Hard Rock Tampa poker ambassador Wally Maddah. Both Siddiqui and Laake took turned at the top of the counts, but neither was around when Day 2 ended with 12 players remaining.
Those 12 returned for a bonus day with Java holding a big lead. Two players, Ross Ramlal and Paulo Treu, were quick eliminations to form the final table ten.
They settled in for a long grind with the chip lead changing several times throughout. David Shmuel and Andrea Lloha were the first sent off followed by former SHRP champ Manny Minaya. Players continued to push chips around the table with the stacks evening out until Brian Powell dropped out in fifth place. Java regained a huge lead with that elimination to start a chop conversation.
His stack was over 30,000,000 for almost half of the chips in play with four remaining. They discussed a deal to divide the remaining prize pool and it was complete without too much trouble.
Java was awarded $230,849 for his huge stack and he was declared the $1,000,000 guaranteed Event 1 Champion.
This is merely another example of the hot run Java has been on all summer. He earned two WSOP bracelets this year, in the $1,000 WSOP Tag Team tournament and the WSOP Online Championship, and finished seventh out of 3,542 in the WPT500 Las Vegas event.
Java kicked off his summer right here when he won the $360 No Limit Hold’em Event 27 during the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown.
“It’s a confidence game,” Java commented about his recent run. “It’s tough to quantify what exactly works, why it’s a confidence game, but there’s something about poker which momentum is a real thing.”
“I think if you’re playing well and you keep putting yourself in good spots,” he continued, “It does help.”
Java has no plans to buy in to the high rollers, though he will attempt to satellite his way in, but he will be here for the rest of The Big 4 trying to stay hot.
Final table results:
1st: Nipun Java – $230,849 *
2nd: Alfredo Guevara – $169,791 *
3rd: Josh Robins – $133,824 *
4th: Ana Clara Freitas – $130,701 *
5th: Brian Powell – $79,722
6th: Michael Mehallis – $62,667
7th: Zach Donovan – $46,009
8th: Manny Minaya – $30,937
9th: Andrea Lloha – $22,211
10th: David Shmuel – $14,279
* – denotes four-way deal
— Nipun Java (@nipunjava) August 8, 2017