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Another for Ari: Engel Takes Mega Millions XVIII for $315K

Ari Engel
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  • .@AriEngelPoker bested a field of 6,987 in L.A. to lock up his 3rd biggest career score.

The legend of Ari Engel got its latest chapter added Thursday night as Engel took down the third-biggest score of his career, $319,442 for winning $160 Mega Millions XVIII Quantum Reload at The Bicycle.

Engel topped a field of 6,087 in the intricately-designed event, which features a slew of starting days and allows players to direct buy into Day 2 for $4,300. The tournament more than doubled its $1 million guarantee with the usual massive turnout in L.A.

The only bigger scores in the career of the well-traveled pro were his win at Aussie Millions for $1.1 million and a fifth-place finish in an EPT Barcelona High Roller in 2016 for $347,219. He now has over $5.8 million in cashes.

Official Final Table Results

PlacePlayerPrize
1Ari Engel$319,442*
2Min Zhang$178,565
3David Marshall$116,350
4Pat Lyons$90,080
5Igor Zektser$68,585
6Danny Ghobrial$53,590
7Brandon Zuidema$42,290
8Russel Nygren$33,350
9Yiming Cui$25,745

*includes $4,300 seat to next Mega Millions

Final Table Action

According to the live updates, Engel went into the final table a close second to Min Zhang. Both players sported monster stacks north of 24 million at 50,000/100,000/10,000.

Another notable final table participant was WPT champ "World Famous" Pat Lyons. After the first three eliminations, he got in a massive flip with Zhang holding sixes against ace-king. An all-spade flop was good news for Lyons as he held the only spade and nothing further emerged from the deck to trouble him, knocking Zhang from her place atop the counts.

Engel then got cooking, three-betting with jacks and inducing a four-bet shove from Danny Ghobrial. Engel was in a fantastic spot against {j-Clubs}{10-Hearts} but did have to fade eight outs when Ghobrial turned open-ended. The river bricked out and Engel moved into the lead with 32 million at 200,000/400,000/50,000.

The next victim would be Igor Zektser. He got in leading but racing with eights against Engel's ace-queen but Engel paired up on the flop and sent Zektser out fifth.

Engel's aggression then got the best of Lyons, who three-bet big over an open of 1.25 million to 5 million. Engel picked up the {a-Hearts}{k-Clubs} and made it 14 million and Lyons shoved for slightly more with {a-Spades}{10-Hearts}. A paired flop gave him a chance to chop but Engel would ultimately hold.

David Marshall then played for stacks against Engel with {k-Spades}{j-Hearts} against pocket tens. Nothing bigger than a nine hit the board and Engel went heads up with Zhang leading about 3-2 in chips.

On the final hand, the two would see a board of {5-Spades}{5-Diamonds}{3-Hearts}{9-Diamonds}{10-Hearts}. Zhang bet 5 million on the turn and called when Engel raised to 11.5 million. On the river, Zhang again bet 5 million. Engel raised to 16.75 million and Zhang jammed for 25 million. Engel wasn't thrilled about it but called with {a-Clubs}{5-Clubs}, but he was good against pocket queens to secure the win and force Zhang to settle for a still-hefty $178,565.

Photo courtesy of The Bicycle Poker

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