This past weekend, the Heartland Poker Tour (HPT) was at the Commerce Casino in Commerce, California for their latest $1,650 Main Event. The tournament attracted 583 entries and created a prize pool of $845,350.
Commerce was the second of four California stops on what has been called the “Gold Rush Series.” The tournament attracted plenty of notables including David "ODB" Baker and last year's Gold Rush champion Shawn Motameni, but one of the biggest stories ended up being Stan Jablonski’s 40th-place finish for $4,230, moving him ahead of Craig Casino for most career cashes on HPT.
After an intense weekend of play, Jonathan Chen, who was actually the final player to register for the tournament, emerged as the last man standing to capture the title and $159,780 first-place prize.
Final Table Results
|1||Jonathan Chen||Alameda, CA||$159,780|
|2||David Rosenbloom||Los Angeles, CA||$112,010|
|3||Danny Geyser||Redondo Beach, CA||$72,020|
|4||Bruce Kramer||Westminster, CA||$53,340|
|5||Peter Hengsakul||Pasadena, CA||$39,990|
|6||Chris Hyden||Laguna Beach, CA||$32,040|
|7||Ron Jenkins||Los Angeles, CA||$26,710|
|8||Jeff Madsen||Los Angeles, CA||$21,300|
|9||Gary Hawkins||Long Beach, CA||$15,980|
According to the HPT live blog, it took 46 hands at the final table for Gary Hawkins to fall in ninth place, and then on Hand #71 well-known poker pro Jeff Madsen, who won the HPT California State Poker Championship back in May, followed him out the door in eighth after his was cracked by Chen's thanks to a queen on the flop and a queen on the river.
"I'd like to play more events on HPT," Madsen said. "It's a good mix of recreational players but also good players. I just felt very comfortable here."
From there, Ron Jenkins and Chris Hyden exited in seventh and sixth places, respectively, and then Peter Hengsakul fell in fifth.
The next to go was Bruce Kramer, the owner of a commercial construction business, who walked away in fourth place for $53,340 after his was outdrawn by the of Geyser. Despite notching the previous two eliminations, Geyser fell in third place when he got his chips all in preflop holding the against the of Chen. A nasty seven on the river was all she wrote for Geyser, who took home $72,020 for his third-place finish.
That left Chen, a recent college grad, holding a big chip lead over film editor David Rosenbloom, and it’d take him just 16 hands to seal the deal. In what would be the final hand of the tournament, which took place on Hand #159 in Level 32 (100,000/200,00025,000), Rosenbloom limped and then called when Chen exercised his option with a raise to 600,000. The flop saw Chen bet 600,000, Rosenbloom move all in, and Chen call.
Rosenbloom flopped an open-ended straight draw, which he needed to hit to overcome Chen’s pair of aces. The turn gave Rosenbloom an added flush draw, but the blanked on the river. Rosenbloom had to settle for runner-up and a $112,010 consolation prize, while Chen took the title of HPT champion and $159,780 in prize money.
For more on the HPT Commerce Casino, check out this video:
The next stop for the HPT will be at the Thunder Valley Casino & Resort from now until Sept. 28. A full schedule of events is available at HPTpoker.com.