Tommy Tran Survives a Roller-Coaster Day to Win the PLO Trophy a Few Hours Before His Flight Home

2019 Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open 
Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino 
Hollywood, Florida
Event 5

$400 Pot Limit Omaha (Re-Entry)
Entries: 137
Prize Pool: $46,580
November 22, 2019 

Tommy Tran and Wife Magdalena Hernandez
Tommy Tran and His Wife Magdalena Hernandez

Tommy Tran of Atlanta, Georgia, booked his flights and accommodations this week around the hope of making Day 2 of Event 1, but after firing a few bullets, he wasn’t able to find a bag. That’s okay, because his preferred game is Pot Limit Omaha, and after a roller-coaster ride thru Event 5 ($400 Pot Limit Omaha), Tran defeated Hyndi Khomutetsky heads-up to win his second PLO trophy this year.

“I’ve never done really well in hold’em,” said Tran. “I’m an action, gambling type of player. I love PLO. I’ve always played PLO cash games.”

In the past year or so, Tran has started to play more tournaments, fitting them into his schedule when he’s not busy running two different businesses — a financial education and services company, and a restaurant consulting and development firm.

The transition to tournaments has been going well, as Tran won a PLO trophy in Atlantic City back in January, followed by a runner-up finish in $570 Pot Limit Omaha at the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa Poker Classic in February.

When asked about his path to victory in this event, Tran said, “I had the biggest roller-coaster. I knocked out 10 or 11 players at my first table, and probably took out at least 16 players in this tournament.”

When the field was down to the final two tables, Tran was chipleader with 330K, but then the tournament hit a wall with 13 players remaining, and they played for well over an hour without anybody busting. During that time, Tran dropped all the way down to 65K, but he bounced back to start the nine-handed final table third in chips with 250K.

“I thought I played pretty well,” said Tran. “I caught a lot of people in a lot of good spots, and I made some really tough calls. Then [Sean][Shah] caught a five-outer against me to knock me back down with eight players left. Huge swings for me, but it was worth it.”

Tran won the event just a couple of hours before he and his wife, Magdalena Hernandez, had to catch a flight back to Atlanta. But they’re leaving most of their luggage here at the hotel because they’ll be returning on another flight tomorrow night. Both of them are big fans of Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood.

“We came here three months ago when there was still construction,” said Tran. “But the new poker room is absolutely beautiful. I love it here.”

Final Results:

1st:  Tommy Tran  –  $11,705 + RRPO Trophy
2nd:  Hyndi Khomutetsky  –  $7,805
3rd:  David Moreno  –  $5,455
4th:  Iman Nikmaram  –  $3,915
5th:  Sean Shah  –  $2,895
6th:  Wilfor Marentes Pinto  –  $2,205
7th:  Kenny McCollough  –  $1,730
8th:  Steve Roth  –  $1,400
9th:  Gabriel Ramos  –  $1,170
10th:  Trenton Pippin  –  $1,170
11th:  Federico Herrera  –  $1,010
12th:  Brandon Sinawi  –  $1,010
13th:  Aaron Kupin  –  $905
14th:  Christopher Back  –  $905
15th:  David Carvara  –  $840
16th:  Hossein Ghodosi Fard  –  $840
17th:  Stewart Yancik  –  $810
18th:  Joshua Adkins  –  $810