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Matt Waxman Wins WPT Regional Seminole Hard Rock “Rock ‘n’ Poker Open” Main Event

Matt Waxman

The World Poker Tour Regional Seminole Hard Rock "Rock 'n' Poker Open" Main Event came to a close on Monday, and emerging victorious over the 482-player field was Matt Waxman. He defeated a tough field of competitors that included Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi and Darryll Fish making extremely deep runs.

"Rock 'n' Poker Open" Main Event Final Table Results

1Matthew Waxman$123,598*
2Yuan Yangshen$123,597*
3Tyler Stafman$65,504
4Tom Gleason$48,441
5Darryll Fish$36,367
6Mark Morono$29,135
7John Pizano$24,295
8Kevin Spires$19,375
9Javier Prado$14,532

*Denotes a heads-up deal.

Beginning he final day of play, 14 players remained. Waxman was leading the field with 1.302 million in chips, but Mizrachi wasn't far behind with 1.208 million. Despite starting the day second in chips, though, Mizrachi's run ended in 10th place.

According to the tournament's live updates, Mizrachi was eliminated with the blinds at 12,000/24,000/4,000 at the hands of Fish. After a four-way flop of {K-Hearts}{J-Hearts}{6-Spades}, everyone checked to see the {A-Hearts} land on the turn. Mizrachi moved all in with the {A-Diamonds}{J-Diamonds} for two pair, but Fish called with the {7-Hearts}{3-Hearts} for a flush. The {2-Diamonds} failed to give Mizrachi a full house, and he was eliminated for a payday of $10,628.

With Mizrachi's elimination, the official final table was set. Waxman was still the chip leader at this time, but not by much over Yuan Yangshen. From there, it would be Javier Prado falling in ninth place, Kevin Spires in eighth, John Pizano in seventh, and Mark Morono in sixth to set up five-handed play. It was here that the players would remain until the dinner break with Yangshen having the chip lead, albeit just over one big blind ahead of Waxman in second place.

Following the dinner break, Fish was the first player eliminated. He was bounced in fifth place after his {A-Spades}{10-Hearts} couldn't out flip the {9-Diamonds}{9-Spades} for Yangshen. The flop, turn, and river ran out {Q-Hearts}{9-Hearts}{7-Clubs}{K-Clubs}{2-Spades} to drown Fish.

Tom Gleason followed Fish out the door with a fourth-place finish worth just under $50,000, just about doubling his previous best live cash. Then it was Tyler Stafman eliminated in third place for $65,606.

Much like they were when the official final began and also at the dinner break, Yangshen and Waxman were virtually tied heading into heads-up play. After a bit of play, Waxman edged out a slight lead, although neither could really distance himself from the other. Eventually, the two reached an agreement on a deal and chopped up the money almost right down the middle with Waxman getting the title. He took home $123,598 with the win while Yangshen earned $123,597 for officially finishing in second place.

Starting in 2010, Waxman has landed a six-figure score in the last four months of every year. This win in his home state of Florida secured anther year that stat holds true. Waxman has been hot as of late on the felt, earning nearly $225,000 in October and November thanks to three final tables. The other two came when he took third in the $2,500 Isle Open Championship Event at Pompano Beach for $84,000 at the end of October and eighth in the 2013 DeepStacks Poker Tour World Championship at Mohegan Sun just last week.

Following this victory, Waxman told PokerNews that his next event will be at the European Poker Tour in Prague. With a WPT title and a World Series of Poker gold bracelet already secured, Waxman is now a contender for poker's elusive Triple Crown if he is able to win an EPT Main Event. Come another week and a half, we'll see if he can do just that in Prague.

Data and photo courtesy of

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