- »Griffin Paul Triumphs in WPT500 Los Angeles Event
Griffin Paul Triumphs in WPT500 Los Angeles Event
WPT500 is a tournament that gives players the opportunity to play in a huge field MTT for a small buy-in. The latest WPT500 took place at The Gardens Casino in Los Angeles and featured 16 starting flights. An incredible 2,310 players bought in for $570 over those 16 flights and created a $1,155,000 prize pool.
Griffin Paul is the man who got his hands on the lion’s share of the prize pool, namely $174,850. Amazingly, this huge sum is only the third-largest of Paul’s career.
WPT500 Los Angeles Final Table Results
Day 2 started with 114 players in the hunt for the title, each guaranteed at least $1,950 for their effort. High profile players like Nick Pupillo, Matt Salsberg, and Nicholas Grippo busted during the day. Ira Friedman fell in 10th place to set the final table. Friedman got his chips into the middle with two pair against Bradley Hinson but Hinson improved to a better two pair on the turn to send Friedman to the showers.
California’s Matthew Witjas was the final table’s first casualty. Witjas open shoved 14.5 big blinds from the cutoff with pocket fives and Tim Tang called in the big blind. Tang showed pocket nines meaning Witjas was in big trouble. The board ran our favorable for nines and the tournament lost a player.
Double Elimination in the WPT500 Los Angeles Event
Double eliminations are rare in tournament poker, but they do happen. One happened in the WPT500 Los Angeles, one that saw Jaideep Sajwan and Andrew Wisdom crash out.
Bradley Hinson opened from late position, Wisdom three-bet all-in and Sajwan also moved all-in. Hinson called, covering both players and putting them at risk of busting. Wisdom turned over queen-ten, Sajwan showed ace-king, but Hinson held pocket aces! The best starting hand in Hold’em held true and the player count reduced by two.
The tournament became an all-male affair when Einav Shalom fell by the wayside. Huy Lam raised on the button with a pair of kings and Shalom moved all-in from the small blind. Lam made the easy call and discovered he was up against ace-eight. The board ran out void of aces and Shalom exited in sixth-place.
Lam didn’t put those extra chips to good use because he was eliminated soon after sending Shalom home. In his defense, there wasn’t much he could do because he was all-in with queens against Paul’s threes. A three on the flop catapulted Paul into an unlikely lead. He improved to an unnecessary full house by the river to bust Lam.
The final four became three with the elimination of Tang, again at the hands of Paul. Tang moved all-in for 22 big blinds when first to act on the button, doing so with ace-five. Paul called in the small blind with king-queen. It looked like a Tang double-up was on the cards until the queen of hearts appeared on the river. Game over, Tang. Advantage Paul in the latter stages of the WPT500.
Heads-Up Is Set
A battle of the blinds led to heads-up being reached. All the chips went into the middle on the 7c-3s-2s-4c board. Paul held ace-five for a straight and Hoang Le seven-three for two pair. An ace on the river busted Le in third for $81,125.
Paul held more than twice as many chips as Hinson and it didn’t take long to press home his advantage. The final hand took place during the 150,000/300,000/150,000a level. Hinson limped in and Paul checked his option. Paul checked the 2s-5d-Jh flop, Hinson bet 300,000 and Paul called.
The turn was the Kd and now Paul led for 1,200,000. Hinson called and the dealer placed the 7s on the river. Paul fired a 3,700,000 bet only to see Hinson jam for 10,700,000. The bet was called and Paul showed king-five for two pair. Hinson could only muster the eight-six for a busted flush draw, meaning Paul won the WPT500 Los Angeles event.
Will Paul Play in the WPT500 Barcelona Tournament?
Paul loves the WPT as he has enjoyed more than his fair share of success. His best result came in April 2015 when he won the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Showdown for $1 million. He also won $231,310 for a fifth-place finish in the $7,500 WPT Bay 101 Main Event. Also, in June 2019, Paul collected $84,140 for a fifth-place finish in the $15,000 Tournament of Champions.
The next WPT500 takes place in Barcelona, Spain from March 27th. Whether Paul makes the trip remains to be seen, but someone will take it down and become a WPT500 winner.