The Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida was buzzing with activity this week as the casino was hosting the 2015 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open Championship (SHRPO) which featured a main event that had a $5 million guarantee. The highlight of the event was a special ‘Big 4’ that featured a total guaranteed prize pool that exceeded $7.5 million.
The ‘Big 4’ created a lot of excitement as some of the best poker players in the country took part and the competition was fierce. Poker great Phil Hellmuth added to the excitement by providing commentary on the ‘Big 4’ and Twitch and Pokernight.com also streamed the event which attracted a large online viewership.
This special SHRPO Championship attracted both well known poker professionals and also celebrities and sportstars. Some of the well known poker players in attendance included the likes of ex-SHROP champions Blair Hinkle and Dan Colman, Erik Seidel, a poker hall of fame member, WSOP Main Event champions Jonathan Duhamel and Joe Cada. Former NBA star Earl Barron and Richard Seymour, a superbowl champion also took part in the event.
Many expected Dan Colman, the SHROP 2014 winner to win again but it wasn’t to be as Omar Zazay from Richardson, Texas surprised everyone by playing an extremely smart game to end up winning the main event and taking home $1 million. Brian Phillis came in second place and took home $575,000 while Dan Colman won the 3rd place and took home $310,000.
Apart from the main event, the other three events that comprised the ‘Big 4’ included the High Roller $25,400 no-limit hold’em re-entry which had a $1 million guarantee; ); the $2,650 no-limit hold’em freeze-out which also had a $1 million guarantee; and finally the $1,100 no-limit hold’em re-entry which came with a $500,000 guarantee. The $1,100 re-entry was won by David Eldridge from Pennsylvania who took home $146,100, the $2,650 freeze out was won by Fabrizio Gonzales from Uruguay who took home $236,400 and the $25,000 High Roller was won by Jason Mercier who took home $652,800.
Jason Mercier continued his impressive run of form and currently sits as the number one poker player in the world based on rankings by the Global Poker Index. With this win, the poker superstar has now won over $2 million in live tournament winnings since June 2015.