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Ultimate Supersatellite at the Borgata Has Winners

Top Six Players Win $60,000 Package to Four Major Poker Events


On Sunday, March 19, 419 players sat down in the poker room at the Borgata Hotel Casino in Atlantic City to try to win what was accurately called the Ultimate Supersatellite Poker Tournament.

For $1,000, players played for entry into four major tournaments: a $25,500 seat to the World Poker Tour Championship at the Bellagio, a $10,000 seat to the WPT Foxwoods Poker Classic, a $10,000 seat to the World Series of Poker's main event, and a $10,000 entry to the WPT Borgata Poker Open.

Thanks to the large number of entrants, six players walked out of the Borgata Sunday with tickets to those tourneys, plus $4,500 in spending money.

Steve Zoine, Jason Griffin, Herbert Cheng, Frank Lindner, Joseph Grebanier, and Andy Garnick all won Ultimate Super Satellite packages worth $60,000. Players who finished seventh through eleventh won a $10,000 entry into the Borgata Poker Open in September. They are Charles Minter, Anthony Salerno, Joseph "Black Cat" Lopes, Ronald Wilson, and Josh Spiegelman.

Just about all the players who cashed have major tournament poker experience, which means there's a good chance that one or two of these guys will be able to turn the $1,000 buy-in into something much more valuable. A WPT championship or a WSOP bracelet would certainly qualify.

The top three finishers, Zoine, Griffin, and Cheng, all have cashed in large-field tournaments. Zoine finished second to T.J. Cloutier in last year's WSOP $5,000 no-limit hold'em event, winning $352,620.

Cheng finished fifth in the WSOP Circuit event held at Harrah's Atlantic City earlier this year, and Griffin has cashed in a handful of medium-buy-in events in cardrooms around Atlantic City.

After Zoine's impressive showing at the WSOP, he hit that not-so-invisible wall known as the bubble. He bubbled at the 2005 WSOP's main event, was close to the money at the Borgata Poker Open in September, and was knocked out four seats from the money at the World Poker Finals at Foxwoods a month later.

"I took a break after that," Zoine said.

He still traveled to the sites of the major events and played in the side games, which is how he says he makes his living, but when he heard of the Ultimate Supersatellite, he just couldn't pass up the opportunity to play for entry into the events. So he entered, and now he's back in tournament contention, at least for the next several months.

The winners will head to Foxwoods April 6, then to the Bellagio a week later for the WPT championship. After that it's the WSOP's main event in July, and finally the Borgata event in September.