Wednesday, June 15, 2016 4:35 AM Local Time
MARCO JOHNSON WINS HIS SECOND GOLD BRACELET
Marco Johnson is the newest member of poker’s double gold bracelet club.
The poker player from Walnut Creek, CA won the $3,000 buy-in H.O.R.S.E. tournament, which was played over three days and nights and just concluded at the Rio in Las Vegas. Johnson collected $259,730 in prize money, making this one of the biggest wins of his career.
This marked Johnson’s second win at the series, following a previous victory at the 2013 WSOP where he won the $2,500 buy-in Six-Handed Limit Hold’em title. He now has two wins, 33 cashes, and several deep runs to go along with what amounts to close to $2 million in earnings at the annual summer Las Vegas classic.
“This one feels a lot better, for sure,” Johnson said afterward. “I just got married and my wife is six-months pregnant, so with a kid on the way, this is more special.
Johnson also confided that he had an additional financial interest in the outcome of this finale.
“I also had two of my friends make a bet for a significant amount of money that I would win a gold bracelet this year, so they also won a lot of money – so that feels good.”
Johnson won his victory by dominating a final table which included a mix or pros and amateurs. There were only two former WSOP winners among the final eight – Johnson and Gerald Ringe.
The final moment of triumph came when the big stack scooped the final pot of the tournament against Jared Talarico who finished as the runner up. The final outcome seemed to be a foregone conclusion to some extent, given that Johnson began the heads-up battle with an 11-1 chip advantage. He took a few losses, but then closed out the victory relatively quickly.
I was the most excited coming into this year that I’ve ever been,” Johnson said. “I’ve been that way each year for the nine years that I’ve come to the WSOP. But I do get more and more excited about it. In the past, I’ve focused a lot on cash games. But this year, I decided to focus on tournaments. So, it’s nice to win a bracelet this early.”
This tourney attracted 400 entries which created a prize pool totaling $1,092,000. This was yet another big-buy in event which saw an increase in entries over 2015 when 376 players signed up.
Aside from the winner, here’s a brief report of the other top finishers who made the final table:
Second Place: Jared Talarico, from Houston, TX finished as the runner up. He collected $160,522 in prize money, his biggest score ever at the WSOP. Talarico, a graduate of TCU posted his fourth cash at the series in a most impressive run.
Third Place: Gerald Ringe, from London, UK took third place. He was one of two finalists aiming for a second gold bracelet, but came up two places short. Ringe won the $1,500 buy-in Seven-Card Stud High-Low Split tourney last year, and with this impressive showing added another six-figure score to his WSOP resume. Third place paid out $108,522.
Fourth Place: Todd Ickow, from Valpraiso, IN finished in fourth place. He has cashes dating back 13 years. This was his deepest run at the series, which paid $75,397.
Fifth Place: Glenn Englebert, from Sicklerville, NJ took the fifth-place position. He only has six cashes at the series, to date. However, four of the in-the-money finishes have been final table appearances – including a 4th, two 5th-place finishes, and a 9th. He added another $53,259 to his career WSOP earnings.
Sixth Place: John Crisp, from Zapata, TX finished in sixth place. This was his second time to cash at the WSOP. It was also his biggest score, which paid $38,409.
Seventh Place: Toma Kalaj, from New York City ended up as the seventh-place finisher. He was paid $28,291 in what was his second time to cash at this year’s series.
Eighth Place: Chino Rheem, from Los Angeles, CA was the first player to bust off the final table. The high-stakes gambler perhaps best known for finishing third in the 2008 WSOP Main Event Championship, added $21,294 to his total career earnings at the series, which now has surpassed $2.5 million. Rheem now has 25 cashes and at least one in-the-money finish in each of the last 12 years at the WSOP.