Matthew Zarcadoolas Wins First Hard Rock Trophy After Years of Grinding

2018 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 21
$360 No-Limit Hold’em 
Entries: 156
Prize Pool: $50,000
April 17, 2018

Matthew Zarcadoolas captures first Hard Rock title in $360 No-Limit Hold’em

After grinding tournaments and cash games at the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood for several years, local pro Matthew Zarcadoolas took home his first-ever Hard Rock trophy in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Zarcadoolas was the chip leader and got the better end of a heads-up chop with Elias Nassif in the $360 no-limit hold’em. He defeated 156 entries and took home $11,500 as part of the deal.

For the poker pro that was born and raised in Hollywood, Florida, the trophy means a lot to him.

“I’ve been wanting to get a trophy here for so long,” said Zarcadoolas. “It feels so good to finally get a trophy here.”

Zarcadoolas came into the final table with the chip lead and never let up. With very little resistance and never being on a short stack, it was a dream final table for him.

“I came in as the chip leader and it was smooth sailing most of the way,” said Zarcadoolas. “I really didn’t have too much adversity facing me. Everything went my way.”

The final two players agreed to a deal heads-up, so there was no winning hand for Zarcadoolas to have in his winner photo. Instead, he went with the five-seven offsuit, which was the hand that put him in the lead for good.

“There were like five limpers and I was in the big blind with five-seven off-suit,” said Zarcadoolas. “I flopped two pair and then I turned a full house where another guy had top pair and another guy had an open-ended straight flush draw. We all got the chips in the middle and I knocked out two players to get us down to three-handed.”

Dean Baranowski made his second consecutive final table in this event. He finished ninth for $1,329 just a day after finishing runner-up in the $570 no-limit hold’em. Dan Heimiller, who was one of the players eliminated in the massive pot with Zarcadoolas’ five-seven, finished in fifth and just missed out on his second Hard Rock trophy.

The 156-entry field paid out the top 21 spots and here are the results:

1st: Matthew Zarcadoolas – $11,500*
2nd: Elias Nassif – $10,497*
3rd: Gregory Baird – $5,130
4th: Joseph Duchman – $3,123
5th: Dan Heimiller – $2,410
6th: Norman Zapcynski – $1,998
7th: Arkadiy Tsinis – $1,730
8th: Mario De La Puente – $1,525
9th: Dean Baranowski – $1,329
10th: Kevin Blewitt – $1,150
11th: Raymond Roberty – $1,150
12th: Nadya Magnus – $1,150
13th: Luis Mantilla – $975
14th: Raminder Singh – $975
15th: Nashaat Antonius – $975
16th: Sharon Bachar – $810
17th: Andrew MacDonald – $810
18th: Paul Balzano – $810
19th: Ariel Rosello Quintana – $651
20th: Dimitry Agrachov – $651
21st: Marc Sacheli – $651

*Indicates adjusted payouts for heads-up deal

Event 21: Matthew Zarcadoolas Leads Final 10 Players

$360 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Payouts | Structure
Level 16: 2,000/4,000 with a 500 ante
Players Remaining: 10 of 156

With about 12 minutes left in level 16, the final 10 players redrew for seats at the unofficial final table. With one more elimination, the final nine players will be at the official final table.

Here is a look at the seat map of the final 10 players:

Seat 1: Elias Nassif – 200,000
Seat 2: Matthew Zarcadoolas – 232,000
Seat 3: Kevin Blewitt – 55,500
Seat 4: Mario De La Puente – 201,500
Seat 5: Joseph Duchman – 228,500
Seat 6: Norm Zapczynski – 59,500
Seat 7: Dan Heimiller – 131,000
Seat 8: Arkadiy Tsinis – 225,000
Seat 9: Greg Baird – 176,000
Seat 10: Dean Baranowski – 48,000

Event 21: Dean Baranowski Chipping Up

$360 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Payouts | Structure
Level 13: 1,000/2,000 with a 300 ante
Players Remaining: 19 of 156

Dean Baranowski

On a flop of Th9h6h, the player in the small blind led out for 20,000 and Dean Baranowski moved all in from early position for the small blind’s 51,000 behind.

The small blind quickly folded and Baranowski took the pot. He chipped up and is one of the bigger stacks in the tournament. He’s on the heels of a runner-up finish in the $570 no-limit hold’em event last night for $18,266.

Dean Baranowski – 162,000

Event 21: Prize Pool Payouts with $13,289 to the Winner

$360 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure
Level 1: 25/50
Players Remaining: 72 of 156

Registration closed on Event 21 with 156 entries falling just shy of the $50,000 guaranteed prize pool. We will pay out the full amount as advertised with the last 21 spots paid, $651 for a min-cash and $13,289 for the Event 21 champion.

We will start Event 21 updates after Day 4 of the Championship comes to an end.

2018 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino
Hollywood, Florida
Event 21
$50,000 Guaranteed
$360 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)

Entries: 156
Prize Pool: $50,000
April 17, 2018

1st: $13,289
2nd: $8,708
3rd: $5,130
4th: $3,123
5th: $2,410
6th: $1,998
7th: $1,730
8th: $1,525
9th: $1,329
10th – 12th: $1,150
13th – 15th: $975
16th – 18th: $810
19th – 21st: $651

Event 21: Last Day Poker

$360 No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$50,000 Guaranteed | Structure
Level 1: 25/50

We are running out the string on the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown schedule and time is running out to win a title. Event 21 is a $360 buy-in No Limit Hold’em tournament with a $50,000 guaranteed prize pool that will award one of the last trophies of the series.

Players sit down to 10,000 starting stacks and play 30-minute levels from start to finish. Late registration is available until the start of Level 9 at 3:30pm with unlimited re-entries during that time.

This one-day event will continue throughout the day until one player is left holding the trophy.

  • $50,000 Guaranteed Prize Pool
  • Players begin with 10,000 in chips and 30-minute levels
  • Late registration/re-entry available until start of Level 9
  • This is a one-day tournament and plays until completion
  • Event 21 Structure Sheet