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Jason Mercier Wins 2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown $25,500 High Roller

Floridian Poker Pro Tops Field of 116 Entries To Win $794,600

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Jason Mercier has won the 2017 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown $25,500 no-limit hold’em high roller event, topping a field of 116 entries to win the title and the $794,600 first-place prize. This was Mercier’s second $25,000 buy-in title won at the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood in Southern Florida, having taken down the SHRPO high roller back in 2015 for $517,187. As a result of this latest win the five-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner and European Poker Tour San Remo main event champion has increased his lifetime live tournament earnings to $18,122,463. Mercier now sits in 12th place on the all-time money list, leapfrogging Jonathan Duhamel and Steve O’Dwyer.

“The field was pretty tough,” Mercier told Seminole Hard Rock Poker bloggers. “I mean, it was a lot tougher than last year, even though it was a bigger field. The final table was nine pros basically.”

Mercier’s assessment is accurate. The other eight players joining him at the final table had combined live tournament earnings of over $51 million dollars heading into this event. He entered the final table in the middle of the pack with a fifth-place chip stack. Ari Engel was the chip leader among the final nine, but only had 37 big blinds to play with. The average stack at the time was worth just under 22 big blinds.

Justin Bonomo was the shortest stack at the start of nine-handed play with 310,000 for just five big blinds, but he has able to mount a huge comeback, doubling up several times and then navigating his way to three-handed play as the chip leader.

Heads-up play was set up by a three-way all-in, with Loni Harwood moving all-in from the button for 1,600,000 with blinds of 40,000 – 80,000 holding the KHeart SuitJClub Suit. Mercier moved all-in for 2,345,000 from the small blind with the 10Spade Suit10Club Suit and Bonomo called with the QHeart SuitQClub Suit from the big blind. The board ran out 3Club Suit2Diamond Suit2Heart SuitKClub Suit10Diamond Suit and Mercier spiked a ten on the river to double up and eliminate Harwood in third place ($348,000).

Mercier took a 15 big blind lead into heads-up play, with 6,410,000 to Bonomo’s 5,190,000. He was able to extend his advantage and then get the last of the chips in with a dominating ADiamond SuitQDiamond Suit ahead of Bonomo’s AClub Suit2Diamond Suit. Mercier made the nut flush on the turn and secured the pot and the title.

Bonomo earned $556,800 and 700 Card Player Player of the Year points as the runner-up. This was his fifth final table finish of 2017. He has now clibmed into 10th place on the overall POY leaderboard, which is presented this year by Commerce Hotel & Casino.

Bonomo was far from the only player at this final table to make moves inside the top twenty. Bryn Kenney finished seventh for his 11th final table score of the year, adding
$92,800 and 210 points to his totals. As a result he has taken the outreight lead in the POY race with 3,106 points and $2,947,921 in year-to-date earnings. Anthony Spinella finished fourth for $240,700 and 420 points. This was his third final table of the year and he climbed to third place in the rankings. Finally, the 560 points Loni Harwood earned for her third-place finish were enough to see her climb to 15th place on the leaderboard. She has alos made three final tables this year, including winning the title in a WSOP Circuit $365 no-limit hold’em event at the Palm Beah Kennel Club.

Here is a look at the payouts and POY points awarded at this final table:

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Jason Mercier $794,600 840
2 Justin Bonomo $556,800 700
3 Loni Harwood $348,000 560
4 Anthony Spinella $240,700 420
5 Olivier Busquet $153,700 350
6 Sam Soverel $113,100 280
7 Bryn Kenney $92,800 210
8 Ari Engel $78,300 140
9 Jeff Gross $75,400 70