The Poker Players Championship was held June 19, 2018, Tuesday evening in Las Vegas, Nevada. And for the third time around, Michael Mizrachi, a poker pro from South Florida won the title without a poker chop taking home $50,000. He is an indeed a poker legend for getting a seven figured score in his career. He also won the same prestigious event in 2012 and 2012 plus the WSOP Europe in 2011 giving him a total of four bracelets.
Before the championship, it was only Mizrachi and Brian Rast who had won the $50,000 poker prize more than once. After Mizrachi won, he is now sitting on the top with his name etched on the David “Chip” Reese Memorial Trophy as the third time PPC champion. It is one of the most desired trophies in the poker history.
On the day 1, Mizrachi said he had a poor day and is not able to show up on time during the day 2 spilled his coffee rushing to take a seat in the poker table. Despite the delays and playing in an elite field, everything turns out good to Mizrachi. Final 11 players include the popular Phil Ivey, the 2014 PPC winner John Hennigan and the two-time PPC champ Brian Rast. With this line-up that can grind a pro, many people would definitely get their favorite poker book or watched tutorials while others may prefer to focus their mind as a preparation.
Mizrachi put a necklace of lava beads that was given to him by the brother of this girlfriend as a lucky charm during the championship. He just sat down after and aced the game. Into the final table, he was with the talented John Hennigan, Benny Glaser, Mike Leah, Dan Smith and Aaron Katz. All were motivated to win that PPC bracelet.
During the game, Leah came in with the small number of chips however Katz was the first player to be eliminated. Katz got the last of his chips in the limit hold’em in a nine-high flop with top pair against Glaser. The turn gave Glaser a flush, which he hit on a river and that sent Katz away. On the next few rounds, Glaser stack went downward and was busted by Leah in a 2-7 triple draw.
Leah who came to the poker chop with a short stack, survived the first few rounds until he was busted in the third. In pot-limit Omaha moved all in and received action from Mizrachi giving Leah a gutshot who ended up leaving the game. When only three of them were remaining, Mizrachi got the lead with more chips. During the 2 hours battle, there was a time when Mizrachi and Hennigan’s chips were close to even. In the end, Hennigan and Mizrachi were left with Smith being eliminated on the third. He couldn’t make a straight or even a pair leaving Hennigan with a bit lesser chip.
After Smith left the table, the two former PPC champions took a break and then meet again for the heads-up battle to determine if Hennigan would join the ranks of two-time winners or Mizrachi will be on the top being the only champ to win 3 PPC titles. The last battle only lasted about 20 minutes and Mizrachi won the Poker tournament. The last chip of Hennigan was lost in the no-limit hold’em with Mizrachi’s a middle pair and flush draw against Hennigan open-ended straight draw. Hennigan is one of the front-runners in the WSOP Player of the Year, but the spotlight goes to Mizrachi, leaving Hennigan in the second place with $765,837.
Noise from the crow surrounds the table and began chanting for “Grinder” Mizrachi before forcing themselves to the area for a nice photo. Mizrachi said “It feels amazing when you have a great group of friends, family, and fans. It boosts my confidence and it thinks it helped me out. I felt like I need to do this for them.”
Mizrachi is known by most as a very aggressive poker player. He continuously pushes himself to the edges. Good thing there is only minimal swings during this game. After winning this match, Mizrachi is now tied up with his brother Robert having the four bracelets. Mizrachi is a household name in Poker, in which most of the members of their family gambles. “We are family of gamblers,” Mizrachi said in an interview.
Mizrachi now has three PPC titles, four bracelets two WPT titles, and approximately $17 million USD in cash making him fit in the Poker Hall of Fame. “I think I’ve done enough to where people will give me the respect I deserve,” he said.
The Official Final Table Results
1st: Michael Mizrachi – $1,239,126
2nd: John Hennigan – $765,837
3rd: Dan Smith – $521,782
4th: Mike Leah – $364,197
5th: Benny Glaser – $260,578
6th: Aaron Katz – $191,234