Wednesday the 29th of November was the final day of 2017’s Rock ‘N’ Roller Poker Open Main Event which amassed the participation of 585 players each of whom were eyeing the $2 million guaranteed $3,500 main event. The six-day long competition ended with 48-year-old New York-based recreational poker player Michael Newman walking away with a whopping $374,240 after overcoming of the final table that included some of the best poker players in the industry.
Among the poker pros who made it the table on the final table was Tom Marchese, a renowned poker high-roller, Ari Engel, the eight-time Canadian WSOP Circuit Champion, and Shaun Deeb, whose earnings amount to $2,891,980 – evidently, the competition was very stiff. In fact, Newman’s win came as surprise since many experts anticipated that the first place would be claimed by the any of the poker pros mentioned above owing to their many years of poker tournament experience. Regardless, Michael Newman successfully got through all the 585 entries to emerge the winner and took home the huge $374,240 payday.
Topping the stacked table and emerging victorious in this tournament doubled Newman’s live earnings putting his current total earnings at about $757,457. The Wednesday win is the second largest amount the poker player has won – the first was way back in 2015’s edition of the poker event in which he only managed to get to the 12th position though he got to take home with him a much-deserved win amounting to $30,640.
In an interview with tournament officials after his victory, Newman who is also a former Wall Street worker had this to say, “It’s probably the best thing that I’ve ever done in poker. Money’s great, money’s always great, but (it’s great) to get through the toughest field I’ve ever played against in my life. I always like a challenge and I always want to be playing against the best. That was the best of the best. It was absolutely amazing.”
Dreaded high-roller Dan Colman, who won over $1.4 million in 2014’s major event at Seminole also made the final table but according to live updates of the game, he had one of the shorter stacks and therefore had to bow out in the 10th. This was after he shoved 23 big blinds over a raise and a call with 10s & 10s which in turn favored Ari Engel who woke up with Qs & Qc behind him.
Shaun Deeb also had one the bigger stacks at the beginning of the final table but he eventually lost with a huge flop to Michael Newman when he could not help himself with an As &Ks hand against a pocket pair of queens. Ultimately, with only 20 big blinds left, he had to settle for ninth after he tried to shove over an open but unfortunately bumped into queens with Ac and 10c.
There were a couple other players who, like Newman, managed to amass six-figure wins and they included Francois Zayas, the $360 Ultimate Re-Entry champion who walked away with $107,973 and David Peters, the $5,000 One-Day Champion whose $104,309 win followed closely behind.