Friday, November 11, 2011

Event 1 Recap

$400 + $50 No Limit Hold'em (Re-Entry)

The $400 + $50 Deep Stack No Limit opening event of the inaugural Borgata Fall Poker Open drew a massive field.  After all the entries and re-entries were counted, there were 970 entries for the opener.  Total buy-ins of $388,000 crushed the $200,000 guarantee.

Notables who played, but busted out on day one:
Dave Zeitlin; Ryan Eriquezzo; Mayor of Lakewood, NJ, Steven D. Langert; Josh Brikis; Eric Siegel;  Keith Crowder; WPT title holder Kevin Saul; and Matt 'Muffins' Mazzeo.

Play continued for about 15 hours on day one until the money bubble burst and only 90 players remained.  The final 90 returned for day two, guaranteed to take home at least $828.

Among the returning 90 were three WSOP bracelet holders:
'Syracuse' Chris Tsiprailidis was the first to go.  He finished 25th ($1,769).
Mike 'Little Man' Sica was next.  He took 19th place ($1,769).
Arkadiy Tsinis busted out in 17th place ($2,145).

Ben Klier made the WPT TV final table of the Borgata Poker Open in September 2010, finishing 6th for over $148k.  Today, his luck ran out in 22nd place ($1,769).

Brothers Bryan and Donald Mossey both played this event and both made it all the way to the final table.  Older brother Donald busted out in 6th place ($16,748) and younger brother Bryan finished 5th for $20,700.

The final three came down to Son Nguyen, Michael Michnik, and Mike Lydon.

Son Nguyen (Myrtle Beach, SC) was third in chips at the start of day two and wound up finishing in third place.  Son is 28 years old and this was his first ever live tournament.  Poker is just a hobby for him -- he owns two restaurant franchises and that's how he makes his living.

After doing so well on day one, he washed his lucky shirt in the sink and hung it up in the room overnight so he could wear it again on day two.  Now that he's picked up $30,109 for third place, he plans to play some more tournaments over the next few days.

Michael Michnik (Hollywood, FL) is a local poker pro who plays tournaments and cash games ($5/$10 No Limit and higher).  He's been playing for about 10 years and has amassed over $375k in reported tournament earnings.

Over the last two years, he had 11 cashes and 2 final tables at the WSOP, but hadn't had much luck here at Borgata.  Perhaps the birth of his son David two weeks ago has changed all that.  Michael was 74th out of 90 players returning on day two but made it all the way to second place, good for $49,868.

Mike Lydon (Woodside, NY) is a field tech for Verizon and poker is just a hobby for him.  He's been playing for about five years, without many reported results.  He had one small cash and a final table during the Borgata Summer Open in June 2011, finishing 5th for $5,219.

Mike was 15th in chips at the start of day two and ran with the pack until shortly before the dinner break. WSOP bracelet holder Arkadiy Tsinis was all-in and ahead with pocket Jacks.  Mike held pocket Tens and spiked a Ten to bust Tsinis and take the chip lead.

He held on to that chip lead for the remainder of the tournament, busting five of his nine opponents at the final table, and wound up sitting behind all 24 million chips in play.  For winning this event he earned $84,682 and his largest tournament cash ever.

Mike has to return to his day job, but hopes to come back and play some of the other Deep Stack events during the Borgata Fall Poker Open.

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