Barry Levy Redeems Himself for Last Year’s Runner-Up Finish by Winning the H.O.R.S.E. Trophy

2019 Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open 
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 3

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Entries: 84
Prize Pool: $28,560
November 21, 2019 

Barry Levy
Event 3 Champion Barry Levy

At last year’s Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open, Barry Levy got heads-up in the H.O.R.S.E. event but failed to win, finishing as the runner-up behind Sebastien Soares.

This evening, Levy found himself heads-up once again in the H.O.R.S.E. event, this time with a small chip disadvantage against Charles Odenz. But after a 75-minute heads-up battle, Levy won the final hand during razz, finishing with a 7-6 low to win the title and the RRPO trophy.

While Levy came up one spot short in this event last year, he did win a H.O.R.S.E. event here at Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood back in 2011, plus two more H.O.R.S.E victories in Atlantic City. His other three trophies were won in Omaha Hi-Lo events in California and Atlantic City.

So why does H.O.R.S.E. appeal to Levy so much?

“People don’t play every game well,” said Levy after his victory. “Some people are great at one game, and maybe great at another. But it’s tough for them to switch gears when the games change, and it throws them off a bit. Not that I’m that much better or worse than anybody, but I’ve been playing all these games for a long time. I can exploit spots, like in razz. For the most part, nobody knows how to play razz. They made that game up. Who knows how to play razz?”

The tournament started at 12:00 noon, and it took about 14 hours to reach a winner, with the final table lasting a bit more than four hours. Levy’s nephew Neil Jacobs was on the rail for the entire final table, watching Levy go from chipleader to short stack to champion.

“I like the fast structure,” said Levy. “You get in, you get out, and you get home at a reasonable time.”

Final Results:

1st:  Barry Levy  –  $8,425 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  Charles Odenz  –  $5,615
3rd:  Matthew Smith  –  $3,805
4th:  Richard Shtrax  –  $2,675
5th:  Kevin Love  –  $1,955
6th:  Aaron Kupin  –  $1,485
7th:  Bobby Leff  –  $1,180
8th:  Roy Arkin  –  $975
9th:  Craig Chait  –  $840
10th:  Yuval Bronshtein  –  $840
11th:  Carey Pickus  –  $765

Event 3: Barry Levy Defeats Charles Odenz Heads-Up to Win H.O.R.S.E.

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 22:  30,000/60,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  1 of 84

Barry Levy
Barry Levy

After about 75 minutes of heads-up play, Barry Levy and Charles Odenz were playing razz when they got it all in on fifth street and turned over their cards.

Barry Levy:  (Ax2x) Jx5x7x
Charles Odenz:  (Ax9x) 2x7x7x

Odenz was in bad shape with a pair of sevens, and he needed to catch some unpaired low cards to stay alive.

Barry Levy:  (Ax2x) Jx5x7x6x (8x)  (7-6 low)
Charles Odenz:  (Ax9x) 2x7x7x4x (10x)  (9-7 low)

Levy made a 7-6 low on sixth street, and Odenz needed a three, five, or a six on seventh street to stay alive.

Levy checked his final card first, and the eight didn’t improve his hand, giving Odenz ten outs to stay alive, but he turned over a ten and the tournament was over. Levy won the pot — and the H.O.R.S.E. title — with a 7-6 low.

1st:  Barry Levy  –  $8,425 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  Charles Odenz  –  $5,615

Charles Odenz
Charles Odenz

Event 3: Matthew Smith – 3rd Place ($3,805)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 22:  20,000/40,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  2 of 84

Matthew Smith
Matthew Smith

During a round of Stud-8, Matthew Smith got it all in on third street for about 42,000 against Barry Levy.

Barry Levy:  (Qd6h) Qc
Matthew Smith:  (As4c) 6c

Levy had the lead with a split pair of queens against Smith’s ace high, and Smith needed to improve to stay alive.

Barry Levy:  (Qd6h) Qc9d5c9h (Ah)  (two pair, queens and nines)
Matthew Smith:  (As4c) 6c10c10hKh (8s)  (pair of tens)

Neither player made a qualifying low, and Levy won the pot with his two pair to eliminate Smith in third place.

Matthew Smith –  Eliminated in 3rd Place  ($3,805)

As heads-up play got underway, these were the official chip counts for the final two players:

Charles Odenz  –  606,000  (15 BB)
Barry Levy  –  403,000  (10 BB)

Event 3: Richard Shtrax – 4th Place ($2,675)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 21:  15,000/30,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  3 of 84

Richard Shtrax
Richard Shtrax

During a Stud-8 round, Richard Shtrax got it all in with a pair of sevens and a 7-6 low draw, and he needed to improve to stay alive against Charles Odenz’s pair of aces.

These were their final cards:

Charles Odenz:  (10h4d) AsAcQd9s (Jh)  (pair of aces)
Richard Shtrax:  (7c3c) 4c6d7dQs (Jd)  (pair of sevens)

Neither player made a qualifying low, and Odenz won the pot with his pair of aces to eliminate Shtrax in fourth place.

Charles Odenz  –  505,000  (17 BB)
Richard Shtrax –  Eliminated in 4th Place  ($2,675)

Event 3: Kevin Love – 5th Place ($1,955)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 21:  15,000/30,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  4 of 84

Kevin Love
Kevin Love

During a Stud round, Kevin Love got it all in on third street for 15,000 with a Qd showing, and he was called by Richard Shtrax (9c) and Charles Odenz (As).

Shtrax and Odenz checked all the way down, and all three players showed their complete hands.

Richard Shtrax:  (Qs5d) 9cJsJh5c (9s)  (two pair, jacks and nines)
Charles Odenz:  (6h6c) As2c5hKh (8c)  (pair of sixes)
Kevin Love:  (10s3s) Qd6d8sJc (5s)  (queen high)

Shtrax won the pot with his two pair to eliminate Love in fifth place.

Kevin Love –  Eliminated in 5th Place  ($1,955)

Event 3: Aaron Kupin – 6th Place ($1,485)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 19:  10,000/20,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  5 of 84

Aaron Kupin
Aaron Kupin

During Stud-8, Kevin Love had Qs9s showing on fourth street, and he checked. Aaron Kupin bet 10,000 with 3s7s, and Love called.

Fifth Street:  Love checked with Qs9sKd, Kupin bet 20,000 with 3s7sJs, and Love raised to put Kupin all in for 24,000. Kupin called.

Kevin Love:  (5s2s) Qs9sKd  (queen-high flush draw)
Aaron Kupin:  (4s4h) 3s7sJs  (pair of fours, jack-high flush draw)

The dealer put out the next two streets, with neither player hitting their flush, and neither player making a qualifying low.

Kevin Love:  (5s2s) Qs9sKdQd (2c)  (two pair, queens and deuces)
Aaron Kupin:  (4s4h) 3s7sJs10c (7c)  (two pair, sevens and fours)

Both players improved to two pair, and Love won the pot with his queens up to eliminate Kupin in sixth place.

Kevin Love  –  280,000  (14 BB)
Aaron Kupin  –  Eliminated in 6th Place  ($1,485)

Event 3: Bobby Leff – 7th Place ($1,180)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 19:  10,000/20,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  6 of 84

Bobby Leff
Bobby Leff

During the Razz round, Matthew Smith raises to 10,000 with a 6x showing, Bobby Leff calls with a 7x, and Charles Odenz calls with a 4x.

Fourth Street:  Leff groans as he gets 7x7x, Odenz shows 4xKx, and Smith shows 6xJx. With the best hand showing, Smith bets 10,000. Leff thinks for a bit before he says something like “What the hell,” and he raises all in for 12,000. Odenz and Smith both call, and any further betting will create a side pot between them.

Odenz and Smith get in another 20K each over the next three streets, and everyone shows their cards.

Matthew Smith:  (Ax8x) 6xJx5x9x (4x)  (8-6 low)
Charles Odenz:  (8x3x) 4xKx5x8x (Qx)  (K-8 low)
Bobby Leff:  (Jx3x) 7x7x2x2x (Ax)  (J-7 low)

Smith wins the pot with his 8-6 low to eliminate Leff in seventh place.

Matthew Smith  –  230,000  (12 BB)
Charles Odenz  –  125,000  (6 BB)
Bobby Leff  –  Eliminated in 7th Place  ($1,180)

Event 3: Craig Chait – 9th Place ($840); Roy Arkin – 8th Place ($975)

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 17:  6,000/12,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  7 of 84

Roy Arkin
Roy Arkin

Craig Chait was the shortest stack, and he got it all in on third street during the Stud-8 round, with Kevin Love getting it all in with more chips in a four-way pot.

All four players got to the river with minimal to no betting, and since it was an all-in situation, everyone had to show their cards.

Richard Shtrax:  (2h2c)  Ad6s5hAs  (8s)  (two pair, aces and deuces, 8-6 low)
Barry Levy:  (Jd9h)  Jh7h3s9d  (Ks)  (two pair, jacks and nines)
Roy Arkin:  (Qs5c)  4sAc5s3c  (4h)  (two pair, fives and fours)
Craig Chait:  (8c6d)  AhJc10d4c  (6c)  (pair of sixes)

Shtrax scooped the pot with the highest two pair and the only qualifying low to eliminate both Arkin and Chait on the same hand. Since Arkin started the hand with more chips, he receives the higher finishing position.

Richard Shtrax  –  140,000  (12 BB)
Roy Arkin  –  Eliminated in 8th Place  ($975)
Craig Chait  –  Eliminated in 9th Place  ($840)

Craig Chait
Craig Chait

Event 3: Final Table Begins with Barry Levy in the Lead

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Structure | Payouts
Level 17:  6,000/12,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  9 of 84

As Level 16 came to an end, there were simultaneous eliminations with Carey Pickus eliminated in 11th place and Yuval Bronshtein busting in 10th.

So when they went on break, the final nine players would return to begin playing their final table. Here is the seat draw with their approximate chip counts:

Seat 1.  Kevin Love  –  109,000  (9 BB)
Seat 2.  Roy Arkin  –  63,000  (5 BB)
Seat 3.  Richard Shtrax  –  153,000  (13 BB)
Seat 4.  Craig Chait  –  67,000  (6 BB)
Seat 5.  Bobby Leff  –  95,000  (8 BB)
Seat 6.  Charles Odenz  –  74,000  (6 BB)
Seat 7.  Aaron Kupin  –  122,000  (10 BB)
Seat 8.  Barry Levy  –  173,000  (14 BB)
Seat 9.  Matthew Smith  –  165,000  (14 BB)

10th:  Yuval Bronshtein  –  $840
11th:  Carey Pickus  –  $765

Event 3: Barry Levy Leads as H.O.R.S.E. Nears the Money Bubble

$400 H.O.R.S.E. (Re-Entry)
Level 15:  4,000/8,000 Limits
Players Remaining:  19 of 84

Event 3 - Final 19 Players
Event 3 – Final 19 Players

There are 19 players remaining in the H.O.R.S.E. event as they return from break, and the final 11 players will finish in the money.

The current chipleader is Barry Levy, who has 128,000 (16 Big Bets).

When they get down to the final nine players, they will redraw for random seats at a single table, and that’s when our final table coverage will begin.

Barry Levy
Chipleader Barry Levy