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Tommy Nguyen Wins 2018 WSOP $1,500 Monster Stack No-Limit Hold'em

Canadian Outlasts Massive Field of 6,260 Entries To Win $1,037,451 and His First Bracelet


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Tommy Nguyen has won the 2018 World Series of Poker $1,500 ‘Monster Stack’ no-limit hold’em event, making his way through a gigantic field of 6,260 total entries to win his first gold bracelet and the top prize of $1,037,451. This was by far the largest live tournament score for the 28-year-old from Oakville, Ontario. His previous top cash came just less than two months ago, when he finished eighth in the partypoker LIVE! MILLIONS North America $5,300 CAD main event for $167,700 USD. After that score, he decided to take a break from going to school for accounting give playing poker seriously a shot.

“I don’t know. I’m just taking it all in right now. I dreamed of this and I believed I could make it. I came for a bracelet and I got it," Nguyen told WSOP reporters after winning. “I just final tabled the millions event not too long ago in Montreal. It gave me a chance to come here. I took my shots. I felt really good. I played really good.”

In addition to the money and bracelet Nguyen, also earned 1,320 Card Player Player of the Year points. With this win and the previously mentioned final table finish Nguyen has climbed to 67th place in the 2018 POY race standings.

Nguyen came into the fourth and final day of this event in 22nd chip position with 29 players remaining. Despite being one of the shortest stacks to start the day, but he made his way to the unofficial final table of ten in sixth position. After a few early eliminations, Nguyen lost an all-in against a short stacked Michael Benko. Nguyen’s ace-king was outdrawn by ace-queen, which hit four clubs to make a flush. After that hand, Nguyen was left as the shortest player with seven remaining.

Nguyen found a double up not too long after that, and then knocked out Shyam Srinivasan in seventh place ($154,463), winning a race with ace-king against pocket nines to climb near the top of the leaderboard. 2014 World Poker Tour Bay 101 Shooting Star main event champion James Carroll sent Michael Benko to the rail in sixth place ($202,327) to keep himself within striking distance of the top spot.

Nguyen scored his next double up when he called Chris Chong’s shove with AClub SuitKSpade Suit and found himself up against ASpade Suit5Diamond Suit. Both players paired their aces on the flop, but by the river Nguyen’s king kicker was still enough to earn him the pot. He soared into the chip lead three-handed, while Chong was sent home in fourth place ($354,903).

James CarrollFrank Rusnak was the shortest stack, and he soon found himself all-in holding the KClub Suit7Club Suit against Nguyen’s pocket deuces. The board ran out 10Club Suit8Diamond Suit5Club SuitAHeart SuitJHeart Suit and Rusnak was eliminated in third place, earning $475,212.

Nguyen took roughly a 5-to-4 lead into heads-up play with Carroll. By the time the final hand arose he had increased the advantage to approximately 6-to-1. In the end Nguyen raised to 2,500,000 from the button with the blinds at 500,000-1,000,000. Carroll raised all in for 14,625,000 and Nguyen called with the hand he seemed to hold in all of the biggest pots of the day: ace-king. His ADiamond SuitKClub Suit was in great shape against Carroll’s KDiamond Suit2Club Suit. The board came down JClub Suit8Diamond Suit4Diamond SuitJSpade SuitQHeart Suit and Nguyen’s hand held up to secure the pot and the title. Carroll was awarded $640,916 as the runner-up finisher.

“Ace-king was definitely my hand this tournament. I love ace-king now," Nguyen said after sealing the deal. "I used to hate it, but now I love it.”

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

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Tommy Nguyen $1,037,451 1320
2 James Carroll $640,916 1100
3 Frank Rusnak $475,212 880
4 Chris Chong $354,903 660
5 Daniel Corbett $266,987 550
6 Michael Benko $202,327 440
7 Shyam Srinivasan $154,463 330
8 Harald Sammer $118,802 220
9 Rittie Chuaprasert $92,061 110

For more coverage from the summer series, visit the 2018 WSOP landing page complete with a full schedule, news, player interviews and event recaps.