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2018 Poker Masters: Brandon Adams Leads After First Three Events

Adams Makes Three Final Tables, Wins The $25,000 No-Limit Hold'em Event


The first three tournaments of the seven-event 2018 Poker Masters series are in the books, and so far the standout player has been Brandon Adams. Adams finished fourth in the kickoff $10,500 no-limit hold’em event, won the $25,000 no-limit hold’em event and placed fifth in the $25,000 pot-limit Omaha tournament. All told he has cashed for a collective $543,000 across the three tournaments.

The Poker Masters is a unique tournament series, taking place at the PokerGO Studio outside of the Aria Resort and Casino, that awards a purple jacket to the player with the best overall performance throughout the entire poker festival. In the series’ inaugural run in 2017 the jacket winner was determined by the amount of money a player cashed for. Steffen Sontheimer earned that honor last year, making four final tables, winning two titles and cashing for $2,733,000 along the way. This year the decision was made to shift to a points system, and so far Adams is the leader with 510 points accrued. Here is a look at the points leaderboard after three tournaments:

Ranking Player POY Points
1st Brandon Adams 510
2nd David Peters 300
2nd Keith Lehr 300
3rd Jared Jaffee 210
3rd Jonathan Depa 210
3rd Brian Green 210
4th Isaac Haxton 180
5th Rainer Kempe 150
5th Jake Schindler 150
5th Ben Yu 150

Event 1 – $10,500 NLH

David PetersA total of 69 entries were made in the kickoff event of the series, a $10,500 no-limit hold’em tournament. The $690,000 prize pool was distributed amongst the top ten finishers. In the end the last player standing was none other than 2016 Card Player Player of the Year David Peters, who earned $193,200 as the champion of this event. He also earned 300 points towards the race for the Poker Masters purple jacket, which is enough to see him move into in a tie for second place with the first three events completed.

This was Peters’ 17th final table and fourth title of 2018. He earned 360 Card Player Player of the Year points for the win, enough to catapult him into sixth place on the overall POY leaderboard. He has cashed for more than $4.5 million in POY-qualified live tournaments so far this year.

Brandon Adams kicked off his spree of final tables with a fourth-place finish in this event, cashing for $69,000 and 120 Poker Masters points. Here is a look at the payouts and Card Player POY points awarded at the final table:

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 David Peters $193,200 360
2 Brian Green $138,000 300
3 Rainer Kempe $89,700 240
4 Brandon Adams $69,000 180
5 Cord Garcia $55,200 150
6 Isaac Haxton $41,400 120
7 David Eldridge $34,500 90
8 Almedin Imsirovic $27,600 60

Event 2 – $25,000 NLH

Brandon AdamsThe second event of the series was a $25,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournament. It attracted 50 total entries, creating a final prize pool of $1,250,000. As previously mentioned, Adams emerged victorious with the win, taking home $400,000 and 300 Poker Masters points as the champion of this event.

Adams won a key hand at the final table in an incredible manner. He got all-in on a ASpade Suit4Spade Suit3Heart Suit flop against start-of-the-day chip leader Jared Jaffee. Adams held the AClub Suit10Club Suit for top pair, but was in trouble against Jaffee’s 3Diamond Suit3Club Suit for bottom set. Adams had less than a 2 percent chance of winning the pot at the time, but managed to hit the 10Diamond Suit on the turn and the ADiamond Suit on the river to runner-runner a higher full house than Jaffee. With that Adams vaulted into the lead.

Adams then knocked out current Jake Schindler in third place. Schindler earned $175,000 and 280 points for his latest deep run, his 24th final table finish of the year. With five titles and $6,264,569 in year-to-date earnings, Schindler now sits in the outright lead in the POY standings.

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

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Brandon Adams $400,000 420
2 Jared Jaffee $262,000 350
3 Jake Schindler $175,000 280
4 Bill Klein $125,000 210
5 Jason Koon $100,000 175
6 Daniel Negreanu $75,000 140
7 Dominik Nitsche $62,500 105
8 Cary Katz $50,000 70

Event 3 – $25,000 PLO

Keith LehrThe lone pot-limit Omaha event of the series drew 37 total entries to build a $925,000 prize pool. The lion’s share of that money was ultimately awarded to Keith Lehr, who earned $333,000 after coming out on top. The two-time WSOP bracelet winner also earned 300 points in the race for the purple jacket, joining Peters in a tie for second place behind Adams.

Adams entered the final day of this event in second chip position with six players remaining and held the chip lead for a good portion of the early action. He relinquished the lead back to Jonathan Depa, who began with the largest stack. In the end Ben Yu sent him to the rail in fifth place with $74,000 and 90 Poker Masters points for his third final-table finish of the series.

Yu went out in third place, taking home $148,000 for his 11th final table finish of 2018. With 4,041 Card Player Player of the Year points, Yu has climbed into 12th place in the overall race standings.

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

Place Player Earnings (USD) POY Points
1 Keith Lehr $333,000 336
2 Jonathan Depa $222,000 280
3 Ben Yu $148,000 224
4 Isaac Haxton $92,500 168
5 Brandon Adams $74,000 140
6 Dan Shak $55,000 112

There are four events still remaining in the 2018 Poker Masters, including the series-ending $100,000 no-limit hold’em event that runs from September 13-15. Exclusive live streaming coverage of the event is available on PokerGO starting at 1 pm PT/4 pm ET/10 pm CET daily, with the exception of day 2 coverage of the $100,000 main event on Saturday, Sept. 14 at 7 pm ET.

Winner photo credits: Poker Central / Drew Amato.