An exciting lineup of players faced each other on Sunday at the final table of the inaugural Wynn Classic $10,000 Championship. For the second time in a week, an amateur bested a group of top pros. Following in the footsteps of Eric Hershler, who outran a class field to win the LA Poker Classic main event on March 4th, newcomer Zachary Hyman emerged victorious at the Wynn from a field of 198 players, with many stars among them.
Players and chip counts going into the final table were as follows:
Chris Roos (Calgary, AB, Canada) 888,000
Scott Fischman (Las Vegas, NV, USA) 596,000
Ted Lawson (Plantation, FL, USA) 475,000
Michael Mizrachi (Hollywood, FL, USA) 469,000
Johnny Chan (Cerritos, CA, USA) 431,000
Mike Matusow (Las Vegas, NV, USA) 370,000
Zachary Hyman (Santa Barbara, CA, USA) 279,000
Chau Giang (Las Vegas, NV, USA) 233,000
Chris Moore (Chicago, IL, USA) 222,000
Chau Giang came to the final table as one of the shortest stacks, along with Moore and Hyman. The lively and highly personable poker pro was eliminated almost immediately, when his A-J proved no match for Hyman's pocket Kings. Both players committed all their chips before the flop. A board of J-6-4-8-Q sent Giang packing in 9th place, with $34,571 for his efforts. Giang is a well-known pro and a regular in the highest limit cash games available.
Poker superstar Johnny Chan was next to go. His stack took a big hit from Scott Fischman during the first round of play. Chan held pocket Aces and made it 35K to go in late position. Fischman reraised to 70K from the small blind with . Chan called and the flop came , whereupon Fischman went all-in for 217K on a bluff. The on the turn rescued Fischman, giving him a Broadway, and the on the river sealed the deal.
Chan was now shortstacked with only 110K left. The blinds increased from 6K/12K to 8K/16K with a 2K ante. Two hands later, facing a raise to 50K from Chris Moore, who was two off the button (also known as the hijack position), Chan went all-in on the button with . Moore, with pocket Eights, made the call. The board of brought no help to Chan and he was out in eighth place. Chan, the holder of a record ten WSOP bracelets (along with Doyle Brunson and Phil Hellmuth), two of them in the Main Event, received $38,412 for his efforts here.
Michael Mizrachi became the next casualty, when he went all-in with two black sixes for 211K over a 45K under-the-gun raise by Chris Moore, who called after some thought. Moore's improved when the board came . Mizrachi, familiarly known as "the Grinder" and the lifetime winner of well over $5 million in tournaments, took home $48,015 for seventh place.
Moore's good fortune continued when he faced-off with Scott Fischman in a million dollar pot. Fischman, with raised to 45K in the cutoff seat (one off the big blind). Moore reraised another 66K, holding pocket Queens. Fischman reapplied pressure, committing the rest of his chips, covering Moore by about 200K. Moore considered his options before calling. His pocket Queens were good when the cards came .
Moore now assumed the chip lead and Fischman was short stacked. A few hands later, the latter found in the big blind and moved in for 160K after a 50K raise from Chris Roos in the small blind. Limper Ted Lawson folded on the button. Roos called and flipped over pocket Tens. They held up on a board of and Fischman, a tournament pro with two WSOP bracelets, had to settle for sixth place and $57,618.
The last of the big-name pros at the table was Mike Matusow. He was next to depart, as he moved all in with in the big blind over a button raise from Roos. But Roos was holding pocket Queens and made the call. The board of was good news for Roos. Matusow, winner of the 2005 Tournament of Champions and many other events, along with two WSOP bracelets, had to settle for fifth place and $76,824.
With four players remaining, no one was seriously short stacked or the holder of a dominant chip lead. After the dinner break, it was Zachary Hyman's turn to shine.
With blinds at 15K/30K and a 3K ante, he successfully pushed Ted Lawson off the best hand. On a flop of A-5-4, Lawson made top pair with , but he laid it down on the turn after bettting 200K, when Hyman moved all-in. Hyman showed as he dragged the pot.
Then came the sort of matchup players dream about. After Moore raised to $100,000, Chris Roos moved all-in from the small blind for over a million chips. Roos, as it turned out, held pocket Queens. Unfortunately for him, Hyman, in the big blind, was sitting on pocket Aces. It doesn't get any better than that, except it did. After Moore mucked his cards and his opponents flipped up their hands, he commented that he had folded a queen.
The board of gave the pot to Hyman, while Roos' stack had dwindled to a mere $280,000.
It was soon over for Roos, who went all-in with a gutshot holding on a flop of . In doing so, he ran into another monster hand of Hyman's, as the latter held pocket Tens and had flopped a set. It held up when the turn and river brought the . Roos was out in fourth place, earning $103,712 for his efforts.
Hyman then went after Moore, calling the latter's all-in on a flop of . Moore had two pair with , but Hyman had and hit his open-ender on the river when an Ace came, giving him Broadway.
Moore's third place finish was good for $192,060.
Hyman faced Ted Lawson in heads-up play with almost a five-to-one chip advantage. Their battle was understandably short. The final flop was huge for Hyman, holding , as the board came - a straight with a straight flush redraw. He got especially lucky on the turn, as the gave Lawson, with , three of a kind. Both checked the turn, as they had done on the flop. Hyman pushed on the river, which brought the , Lawson naturally called, and that was that. Hyman was the champ. Lawson received $384,120 for second place. It was not his first cash, but it was certainly his biggest cash since he won a bracelet and $500,000 in a WSOP Pot-limit Omaha event in 2004. His result here put his lifetime tournament winnings at over $1 million.
Hyman and his brother co-own and run a company based in Marin County that processes credit card transactions for over 20,000 businesses nationwide. Hyman's brother introduced him to the game about two years ago. Winning $749,033 here for first place assures that Hyman will be around poker for a long time to come. For more about Hyman's background, check out his post-victory interview at pokerlistings.com.
A total of eighteen players cashed in the event, from a field of 198 entrants. Complete results for in-the-money finishers were as follows:
1.Zachary Hyman San Francisco CA $749,033
2.Ted Lawson Las Vegas NV $384,120
3.Chris Moore Chicago IL $192,060
4.Chris Roos Calgary CANADA $103,712
5.Mike Matusow Las Vegas NV $76,824
6.Scott Fischman Las Vegas NV $57,618
7.Michael Mizrachi Hollywood FL $48,015
8.Johnny Chan Las Vegas NV $38,412
9.Chau Giang Las Vegas NV $34,571
10. Sang Yu Las Vegas NV $28,809
11. Mike Carson Las Vegas NV $28,809
12. Larry Wright McQueeny TX $28,809
13. Ted McNeely Myrtle Point OR $25,928
14. Toto Leonidas Los Angeles CA $25,928
15. Sam Grizzle Las Vegas NV $25,928
16. Joe Cappello West Nyack NY $24,008
17. Doug Mackinnon Buffalo NY $24,008
18. Dapo Fadeyi Denver CO $24,008