A 29-year-old Toronto, Canada-based project manager for a software company came to Niagara Falls, NY, for the weekend and became a champion.
William Liang took down the 2015 Seneca Niagara Falls Summer Slam Main Event and claimed it's $61,535 first-place prize on Sunday inside the Niagara Falls Poker Room at the Seneca Niagara Casino & Hotel.
Final Table Payouts
The tournament drew a whopping 504 entries over two starting days, absolutely crushing the $150,000 guarantee and creating $267,498 prizepool that paid 54 spots. A total of 90 players returned for the final day, with Liang among just four over 300,000 in chips.
Erie, PA's Jeff Wells was the chip leader, but he ran bad early and busted before the money got big. In the meantime, Liang held on to his slew of chips throughout, flirting with the lead and when the final table was finally reached. He and Hollywood actor and poker enthusiast Kirk Acevedo came in with the biggest stacks.
Blake Napierala made his third final table of the 2015 Summer Slam series, but once the blind levels reached dangerous heights, he could do no better than a sixth-place finish. Acevedo, who was playing the event on some downtime from shooting a TV show in Toronto, eventually busted fifth after moving in and out of the lead several times at the final table.
Acevedo's last hand saw his queens get cracked by Liang's . Acevedo had moved all in preflop on the short stack and got called by Liang and Daniel Wagner. Liang and Wagner checked down the board, and it was Liang's flush that scooped the pot.
Finally, four-handed, Liang took full control with his big stack, steamrolling his way to the win by busting all three players in front of him in quick succession to get there.
On the final hand of the tournament, Liang's heads-up opponent, Steven Solodiuk, was all in with the versus Liang's . The coin flip landed in Liang's favor after the board ran out , and he won the hand to earn the victory. Solodiuk finished with a second-place prize of $37,610.
With that, the PokerNews Live Reporting team will say goodbye from Niagara Falls and thank you to the fabulous staff and players at the Niagara Falls Poker Room, who put on another great show here throughout the 2015 Niagara Falls Summer Slam series. It was an absolute pleasure to cover.