Event 22: Joseph Cheong Wins Final Event, Takes $1,100 No-Limit Hold’em Turbo Title

2018 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 22
$1,100 No-Limit Hold’em Turbo
Entries: 93
Prize Pool: $93,000
April 17, 2018

Joseph Cheong busted just a few spots shy of the $3,500 WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown main event on Tuesday afternoon. Despite the heart break of finishing in 11th place and missing out on a six-figure score, Cheong rebounded for a title int he final event of the series.

The high-stakes tournament pro, most famous for his third place finish in the 2010 World Series of Poker Main Event, defeated 93 entries in the $1,100 no-limit hold’em turbo event. He took home $29,503 and his first hard rock trophy.

“It’s great. I got like one extra pay jump by winning this tournament,” said Cheong in jest, referencing a missed pay jump in the main event. “I got a trophy, but I’m kind of disappointed that it’s not guitar shaped.”

Cheong puts in some of the most volume of anybody you could find. Throughout the final table, he was discussing his upcoming travel plans with the other players at the table. He plans on hitting multiple tournaments going up the east coast.

When asked if there was anybody who loves it more, Cheong immediately had one name in mind.

“Ari. Ari Engel,” said Cheong. “But he doesn’t drink, so he’s not as fun as me.”

Just like every other higher buy-in postlim event at the series, the final table was filled with laughs, good times and a few adult beverages.

“It was a good time,” Cheong simply put it.

With 93 entries in the field, the top 12 finishers left with extra money in their pocket. Cheong defeated Jose Reyes heads-up. Here are a look at the results:

1st: Joseph Cheong – $29,503
2nd: Jose Reyes – $17,670
3rd: Brian Green – $11,160
4th: Joseph Elpayaa – $7,208
5th: Brian Powell – $5,580
6th: Michael Kopjanski – $4,418
7th: Jeff Rodriguez – $3,720
8th: Dylan Wilkerson – $3,255
9th: Steven Bennett – $2,951
10th: Evan Teitelbaum – $2,697
11th: Scott Clements – $2,511
12th: Ari Engel – $2,327

Joe Cheong wins $1,100 No-Limit Hold’em Turbo

Event 22: Joe Cheong Wins ($29,503), Jose Reyes Eliminated in 2nd ($17,670)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 23: 20,000/40,000 with a 40,000 ante
Players Remaining: 1 of 93

Joe Cheong

After a couple raises, Joe Cheong was all in for 890,000 on the button with [Ac][Ks] against Jose Reyes’ [Ad][9c].

The board ran out [Jc][3d][3h][4h][Qd] and Cheong, despite his rail of support cheering for a nine, won the pot with a better ace-high.

Reyes was left with less than a big blind and lost the next hand when his [Ac][2s] couldn’t hold up against Cheong’s [Qd][6s].

Cheong earned $29,503 for his win and Reyes netted $17,670 for his runner-up finish.

Joe Cheong – $1,100 No-Limit Hold’em Turbo Champion
Jose Reyes – Eliminated 

Jose Reyes

Event 22: Brian Green – 3rd Place ($11,160)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 23: 20,000/40,000 with a 40,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 93

Brian Green

Joe Cheong moved all in from the small blind and Brian Green called out of the big blind.

Green was all in for about 170,000 with [Qs][7d] against Cheong’s [Ad][9d].

The board ran out [Ts][8h][4c][Js][4h] and Cheong won the pot with ace-high to eliminate Green in third for $11,160. Cheong dragged the pot and goes heads-up with Jose Reyes for the title.

Joe Cheong – 770,000
Brian Green – Eliminated 

Event 22: Joe Elpayaa – 4th Place ($7,208)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 22: 15,000/30,000 with a 30,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 93

Joe Elpayaa

Jose Reyes raised out of the small blind and Joe Elpayaa moved all in out of the big blind for about 450,000. Reyes called.

It was a cold deck with Elpayaa on the wrong side of variance with Elpayaa’s [Js][Jh] up against Reyes’ [Kc][Kd].

The board ran out [7s][5s][2h][3d][Ac] and Reyes’ kings held up to eliminate Elpayaa in fourth place for $7,208. Reyes takes the chip lead into three-handed play.

Jose Reyes – 965,000
Joe Elpayaa – Eliminated 

Event 22: Brian Powell – 5th Place ($5,580)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 22: 15,000/30,000 with a 30,000 ante
Players Remaining: 4 of 93

Brian Powell

Brian Powell moved all in on the button for about 200,000 and Jose Reyes called out of the small blind.

Reyes showed [Ac][6s] and was in the lead against Powell’s [Kc][Ts].

The board ran out [Ad][Jd][8h][Kh][4s] and Reyes won the pot to eliminate Powell in fifth place for $5,580.

Jose Reyes – 450,000
Brian Powell – Eliminated 

Event 22: Michael Kopjanski – 6th Place ($4,418)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 21: 10,000/20,000 with a 20,000 ante
Players Remaining: 5 of 93

Michael Kopjanski

Michael Kopjanski moved all in on the button for about 150,000 and Joe Cheong called out of the small blind.

Cheong was in the lead with [Ah][3h] against Kopjanski’s [Kh][Qd].

“Good luck,” said Kopjanski.

“I can’t say it back,” said Cheong. “I won’t mean it. Good luck next tournament.”

The board ran out [Jc][7h][3d][9d][9h] and Cheong won the pot with a pair of threes. Kopjanski picked up $4,418 for his finish.

Joe Cheong – 510,000
Michael Kopjanski – Eliminated 

Event 22: Joe Elpayaa Doubles Through Brian Powell

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 21: 10,000/20,000 with a 20,000 ante
Players Remaining: 6 of 93

Joe Elpayaa got all in for 238,000 from middle position and got action from Brian Powell in the big blind.

Elpayaa showed [Qs][Qc] and was in good shape against Powell’s [8c][8h].

The window card was the [8s], but the [Qh] was right behind. The flop was completed with the [7s]. Both players flopped a set, but Elpayaa’s was bigger.

The turn was the [9h] and the river was the [3d], sending the pot to Elpayaa.

Joe Elpayaa – 506,000
Brian Powell – 225,000

Event 22: Jeff Rodriguez – 7th Place ($3,720)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 20: 10,000/15,000 with a 15,000 ante
Players Remaining: 6 of 93

Jeff Rodriguez

Joe Cheong raised from middle position and Jeff Rodriguez moved all in out of the big blind for 65,000. Cheong quickly called.

He showed [Ah][Jh] and was in the lead against Rodriguez’s [Qc][3c].

The board came [As][Ks][3s][5s][Kd] and Rodriguez was eliminated in seventh place for $3,720.

Joe Cheong – 400,000
Jeff Rodriguez – Eliminated 

Event 22: Dylan Wilkerson – 8th Place ($3,255)

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 19: 6,000/12,000 with a 12,000 ante
Players Remaining: 7 of 93

Dylan Wilkerson

Dylan Wilkerson moved all in from the cutoff for about 45,000 and Michael Kopjanski called out of the big blind.

Kopjanski showed [As][Qs] and had Wilkerson’s [Qh][9d] dominated. The board came [7c][4d][3h][Jd][8c] and Kopjanski won the pot to eliminate Wilkerson in eighth place for $3,255.

Michael Kopjanski – 145,000
Dylan Wilkerson – Eliminated 

Event 22: Dylan Wilkerson Doubles Through Michael Kopjanski

$1,100 Deep Stack Turbo (Re-Entry)
Structure| Payouts
Level 19: 6,000/12,000 with a 12,000 ante
Players Remaining: 8 of 93

Dylan Wilkerson moved all in for 23,000 from the cutoff and Michael Kopjanski called out of the big blind.

Wilkerson showed [6c][6h] and was in good shape against Kopjanski’s [Jd][3h].

The board came [Js][2s][2c][6s][4c] and Wilkerson doubled up with sixes full.

Dylan Wilkerson – 64,000
Michael Kopjanski – 110,000