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Harlen Miller Tops Massive 2,790-Player Field In MSPT Venetian Main Event

63-Year-Old North Dakota Poker Player Banks $367,801 For The Win


Harlen MillerAn incredible 2,790 entries were made over the course of four starting days at the $1,100 buy-in Mid-States Poker Tour (MSPT) Venetian main event, meaning there was a total of $2,692,350 up for grabs in the prize pool.

The lion’s share ultimately went to 63-year-old Harlen Miller, who more than tripled his career earnings with the $367,801 first-place prize.

This was his second title at the Venetian, having taken down the $600 buy-in seniors event for $75,510 back in 2018.

“I skipped my niece’s wedding to come play this event,” Miller admitted to PokerNews reporters. “I just had a feeling. At least now I can get her a better wedding present.”

Miller went into heads-up play with Ryan Dodd at a significant chip disadvantage, but found a couple of timely double ups to take the lead. On the final hand, Dodd was all-in holding ASpade SuitJSpade Suit against Miller’s pocket queens.

The flop of AClub SuitJHeart Suit6Heart Suit gave Dodd two pair and a great chance of doubling back into the match, but the turn and river fell 10Club Suit KHeart Suit to give Miller a backdoor straight and the final pot of the tournament.

The final table also featured notable poker pros Aaron Massey (9th), Jimmy Tran (6th), and Jonathan Tamayo (5th).

Tamayo picked up $107,694 for his fifth-place finish, bringing his career live tournament earnings to just over $2 million. The Texas poker player was just one week removed from winning a $1,100 event at the Wynn Summer Classic for $237,935, and now sits in 19th place in the Card Player Player of the Year standings.

Here are the final table results.

Place Player Payout POY Points
1 Harlen Miller $367,801 1,200
2 Ryan Dodd $236,927 1,000
3 Albert Knafo $177,695 800
4 Matthew Elsby $140,002 600
5 Jonathan Tamayo $107,694 500
6 Jimmy Tran $86,155 400
7 Robert Noel $67,309 300
8 Jimmy Lujan $50,885 200
9 Aaron Massey $40,385 100

This MSPT event is part of the DeepStack Championship Poker Series currently being held between May 3 and Aug. 1 at the Venetian Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

*Winner photo courtesy of @VenetianPoker on Twitter.