Event 1: Nick Ahmadi Breaks Through for the Trophy

2019 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 1
$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed
Entries: 2,958

Prize Pool: $1,479,000
April 4-8, 2019

Nick Ahmadi, Event 1 Champion

Event 1 of the 2019 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown pulled in a huge crowd to start the series. Nearly 3,000 entries joined and it took an extra day for Nick Ahamdi to earn the title, his first win after several close calls.

Ahmadi has a half dozen final table appearance, including last summer in the SHRPO Black Chip Bounty, and broke through this evening to take the title along with more than $200,000.

The tournament featured six starting flights and a $1,000,000 guaranteed prize pool. The 2,958 entries combined to push the prize pool up to $1,479,000 with the last 300 spots set to earn some cash.

Of those starting entries, we saw 423 return for Day 2 on Sunday and they quickly made it into the money before the first break. By the time Day 2 was complete, we had our final table ten set and SHRP regular Jeff Kessler was at the front of the pack.

It took a while to get some action on the extra day but soon four players would be sent to the rail in the first two levels. Gavin O’Rourke, Habib Jahangard, WSOP bracelet winner Arkadiy Tsinis, and Mohammed Tarkmani went out in quick succession and there was a brief discussion on ending the tournament right there with a deal.

But talks fell through, Ryan McKnight hit the rail soon after and Nathan Lee made a shocking exit. He was second in chips behind Kessler when the two mixed it up in the biggest pot of the tournament. After Lee and Allan Bieler were eliminated, Kessler had 70% of the chips in play at the three-handed table.

That’s where the good news ended for Kessler, former RRPO Seniors Event champion, as he sent doubles to both Ahmadi and Robert Pollmeier. He would fall out in third place to leave Ahmadi and Pollmeier heads-up with nearly identical stacks.

They counted them down, Ahmadi had a slight lead, and they decided to chop up the remaining prize pool down the middle. Each took home $209,977 while Ahmadi was crowned the Event 1 champion.

Final table results:

1st: Nick Ahmadi – $209,977 + Showdown trophy *
2nd: Robert Pollmeier – $209,977
3rd: Jeff Kessler – $108,780
4th: Allan Bieler – $91,328
5th: Nathan Lee – $74,320
6th: Ryan McKnight – $58,421
7th: Mohammed Tarkmani – $42,891
8th: Arkadiy Tsinis – $28,841
9th: Habib Jahangard – $20,706
10th: Gavin O’Rourke – $13,311
* – Denotes results of heads-up deal

Event 1: Nick Ahmadi Takes Title in Heads Up Deal

$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 36: 250,000/500,000 with a 500,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 2,958

Nick Ahmadi

After Jeff Kessler was eliminated, Nick Ahmadi and Robert Pollmeier decided to divide up the remaining prize pool right down the middle. Ahmadi held a small chip lead and was declared the winner.

It was a great comeback for the former short stack and both players walked away with $209,977.

Final table results:

1st: Nick Ahmadi – $209,977 + Showdown trophy *
2nd: Robert Pollmeier – $209,977
3rd: Jeff Kessler – $108,780
4th: Allan Bieler – $91,328
5th: Nathan Lee – $74,320
6th: Ryan McKnight – $58,421
7th: Mohammed Tarkmani – $42,891
8th: Arkadiy Tsinis – $28,841
9th: Habib Jahangard – $20,706
10th: Gavin O’Rourke – $13,311
* – Denotes results of heads-up deal

Robert Pollmeier

Event 1: Jeff Kessler – 3rd Place ($108,780)

$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 36: 250,000/500,000 with a 500,000 ante
Players Remaining: 2 of 2,958

Jeff Kessler

Jeff Kessler opened to 1,250,000 from the small blind and Nick Ahmadi put him all in from the big. Kessler thought for a minuted and called for ~4,500,000.

Ahmadi: 6s6c
Kessler: Ad2h

Kessler needed to catch his small ace but blanked the Kh8c5h7c2d runout to go out in third place.

Nick Ahmadi – 30,525,000 (61 bb)
Jeff Kessler – Eliminated in 3rd Place ($108,780)

Event 1: Nick Ahmadi Doubles Through Jeff Kessler

$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 36: 250,000/500,000 with a 500,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 2,958

Nick Ahmadi

Nick Ahmadi opened his button to 1,200,000 and Jeff Kessler called from the big blind to the AsTc7s flop. Kessler bet 2,000,000 and Ahmadi called. The turn was 7d and Kessler checked. Ahmadi put out 2,800,000 and Kessler announced: “all in”.

Ahmadi quickly called for 6,550,000 and Kessler cursed a little bit.

Ahmadi: TdTs
Kessler: KsKc

Ahmadi’s tens outflopped the kings and the Ah river sent him the big double.

Nick Ahmadi – 20,200,000 (40 bb)
Jeff Kessler – 10,400,000 (21 bb)

Event 1: Robert Pollmeier Doubles Into the Lead

$570 Deep Stack No Limit Hold’em (Re-Entry)
$1,000,000 Guaranteed | Structure | Payouts
Level 36: 250,000/500,000 with a 500,000 ante
Players Remaining: 3 of 2,958

Robert Pollmeier

Robert Pollmeier limped his small blind and Jeff Kessler raised to 1,700,000 from the big. Pollmeier called and the flop came 7c4d3c. Pollmeier checked, Kessler bet 2,000,000 and Pollmeier called.

The turn was 5d and Pollmeier took the lead with a 2,500,000 bet. Kessler called, the river was 2c, and Pollmeier checked again. Kessler announced all in and Pollmeier called for 8,075,000.

Pollmeier: KcQc
Kessler: Ac8h

Pollmeier was good with the second nut flush to double into the lead.

Robert Pollmeier – 29,050,000 (58 bb)
Jeff Kessler – 20,275,000 (41 bb)