Brett Bader Wins WSOPC Harrah’s Cherokee Main for $364K; Max Young Ships High Roller
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The 2022/2023 season of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Circuit recently wrapped up a stop at Harrah’s Cherokee in North Carolina. The series, which awarded 17 gold rings, marked the first of four visits the tour will play to the property this season.
Among those to capture rings were Shannon Hamblen, who topped a 2,726-entry field to win Event #2: $400 No-Limit Hold’em for $120,742; Michael Esquivel claiming his first-ever piece of WSOP gold besting a 443-entry field to win Event #10: $400 NLH for $29,108; and Eric Rivkin besting 423 runners to win the final tournament, Event #17: $400 NLH Double Stack, for $28,146 and his third career gold ring.
Here’s a look at the winners from the WSOP Circuit Harrah’s Cherokee Main Event and High Roller.
Brett Bader Wins Main Event for $364,104
This past weekend, the $1,700 Main Event attracted 1,558 entrants through two starting flights to create a $2,360,370 prize pool. It set a record for the largest WSOP Circuit Main Event at the venue to date.
The prize pool was paid out to the top 233 finishers including Michael Lech (11th - $30,618), Luke Blindert (13th - $24,842), Hamid Izadi (16th - $20,343), Shiva Dudani (27th - $11,817), Susan Murphy (31st - $8,629), Brett Apter (36th - $7,483), and Asher Conniff (38th - $6,553).
The final table was a stacked affair filled with accomplished poker players including MSPT champ Chris Meyers (9th - $38,083) and 10-time ring winner Jeff Trudeau (6th - $77,351), but it wound up being Brett Bader (pictured above) and Matthew Wantman battling it out for the title.
Bader, 31, wound up the victor to claim the $364,104 top prize, a seat into the 2023 Tournament of Champions, and his third career ring, the first since 2017.
"It hasn't really sunk in, to be honest," Bader told WSOP officials after his win. "I haven't been here in a few years, and the last time I was I finished runner-up to Leif Force in the $1k."
He added: “I'm just really grateful and glad I ran well,"
WSOPC Harrah’s Cherokee Main Event Final Table Results
|1||Brett Bader||Coconut Creek, FL||$364,104|
|2||Matthew Wantman||Stoneham, MA||$225,047|
|3||Amir Atabaki||Atlanta, GA||$170,095|
|4||Thong Ho||Summerville, SC||$129,670|
|5||David Dowdy||Ball Ground, GA||$99,714|
|6||Jeff Trudeau Jr.||Winter Garden, FL||$77,351|
|7||Bryan Emory||Plantation, FL||$60,535|
|8||David Moses||Asheville, NC||$47,799|
|9||Chris Meyers||Kenmore, NY||$38,083|
Max Young Wins High Roller for 7th Career Ring
Meanwhile, Event #16: $2,200 NLH High Roller saw 205 runners create a $410,000 prize pool. That was offered up to the top 31 finishers, and some familiar names to cash but fall short of the final table were John Verdeaux (10th - $6,757), BJ McBrayer (15th - $5,672), Jesse Cohen (21st - $4,303), Ari Engel (25th - $3,618), and Jason White (31st - $3,391).
Coming out on top to claim $100,234 and his seventh career gold ring was Max Young, who marked his first victory in three years.
“It feels really, really good,” said the 37-year-old Young. “This is pulling me out of the worst downswing I’ve ever been in. It’s just been crazy.”
He added: “I’ve been studying with Chip Leader Coaching and Joe McKeehen’s my coach, he’s been helping me a lot, especially with sizing and stuff. Just getting some new perspective, so that’s been great.”
WSOPC Harrah’s Cherokee High Roller Final Table Results
|1||Max Young||North Palm Beach, FL||$100,234|
|2||Shankar Pillai||East Brunswich, NJ||$61,949|
|3||Thomas Newton||Smyrna, GA||$43,581|
|4||Marshall White||Boone, NC||$31,292|
|5||Matthew Higgins||Rossville, GA||$22,943|
|6||Angela Jordison||Bend, OR||$17,184|
|7||Anthony Dorlan||Hendersonville, TN||$13,153|
|8||James Anderson||Pittsburgh, PA||$10,295|
|9||Bradley Anderson||Missoula, MT||$8,244|
WSOP Circuit Harrah’s Cherokee Winners
|Event #1: $400 NLH Double Stack||573||$189,090||Stuart Moody||Cary, NC||$25,241|
|Event #2: $400 NLH||2,726||$899,580||Shannon Hamblen||Smyrna, TN||$120,742|
|Event #3: $400 NLH||691||$228,030||Christopher Reaves||N/A||$41,728|
|Event #4: $400 Seniors NLH||925||$305,250||Richard Fowlkes||Englewood, FL||$51,755|
|Event #5: $600 NLH||414||$213,210||Josh Vanhoose||Hustonville, KY||$43,181|
|Event #6: $400 NLH 6-Max||786||$259,380||Brandon Zuidema||Corona, CA||$47,422|
|Event #7: $400 Pot-Limit Omaha||365||$120,450||Dominique Morrison||Neptune, NJ||$25,290|
|Event #8: $400 NLH Monster Stack||2,493||$822,690||Eric Snyder||Brevard, NC||$113,839|
|Event #9: $1,100 NLH||415||$404,625||Matthew Emmel||Charlotte, NC||$84,297|
|Event #10: $400 NLH||443||$146,190||Michael Esquivel||Clarendon Hills, IL||$29,108|
|Event #11: $250 Ladies NLH||198||$39,600||Donna Phillips||Mebane, NC||$9,550|
|Event #12: $1,700 Main Event||1,558||$2,360,370||Brett Bader||Coconut Creek, FL||$364,104|
|Event #13: $400 NLH||473||$156,090||Russell Brooks||Atlanta, GA||$30,623|
|Event #14: $400 NLH||581||$191,730||Matthew Stuff||Clarksville, TN||$35,501|
|Event #15: $250 Seniors NLH||914||$182,800||Richard Taylor||Canton, GA||$31,055|
|Event #16: $2,200 NLH High Roller||205||$410,000||Max Young||North Palm Beach, FL||$100,234|
|Event #17: $400 NLH Double Stack||423||$139,590||Eric Rivkin||Laguna Woods, CA||$28,146|
The WSOP Circuit will now head to Hard Rock Tulsa from August 17-28 followed by Horseshoe Council Bluffs just outside Omaha from September 15-26. From there it will be stop at Aruba Hilton (September 22-October 2), Thunder Valley Casino (September 29-October 10), and Isle of Capri in Pompano Beach, Florida (October 13-24).
Executive Editor US, PokerNews Podcast co-host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.