Seminole Hard Rock Crusher Michael Newman Seeks to Win RRPO for 2nd Time

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Michael Newman

The World Poker Tour (WPT) $3,500 Rock ‘N’ Roll Poker Open (RRPO) at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida attracted a massive field on Saturday’s Day 1b flight, and one man in action was former champ Michael Newman.

Five years ago in 2017, Newman topped a field of 585 entrants to win the WPT RRPO for $374,240. He did so by defeating a stack final table that included Matas Cimbolas (2nd - $262,440), Darryll Fish (3rd - $168,920), Ari Engel (5th - $93,560), Tom Marchese (6th - $75,380), and Shaun Deeb (9th - $37,420).

What’s more, Newman is actually one of the most accomplished players in Seminole Hard Rock Poker (SHRP) history having claimed seven titles. Less than a week ago, his seventh title came when he bested a 107-entry field to win the 2022 RRPO Event #18: $400 Deep Stack Turbo NLH for $7,136. That put him in a tie with Brian Altman, Yuval Bronshtein, Gabe Ramos, and David Prociak, behind only Raminder Singh’s nine titles.

2022 RRPO Event #18 Final Table Results

1Michael Newman$7,136*
2Roberto Bendeck$6,110*
3Steven Glazerman$6,037*
4Jesse Lott$4,907*
5Akash Hotwani$2,035
6Samuel Sternfield$1,675
7Edina Pantinchin$1,420
8Scott Baumstein$1,240

PokerNews caught up with Newman on a break from the Main Event to chat about his seventh title, seeking a WPT title, and more.

Baumstein, Holley & Singh Find Success at WPT Rock ‘n’ Roll Poker Open (RRPO)

Newman Weighs In

Newman, who is in his mid-50s with no kids, is originally from New York but relocated to South Florida.

“I moved down here from New York in the middle of 2015 and it became my home,” he told PokerNews. “It’s been good to me.”

“Even when I won the big one, no one could believe I played the $150 the next day."

That might be an understatement as Newman currently sits in fourth place on the Seminole Hard Rock Hollywood’s all-time number of cashes list with 113 (Ory Hen leads with 127 cashes).

“It’s always tough to win a title. I enjoy it so much,” Newman said of his most recent victory. “Even when I won the big one, no one could believe I played the $150 the next day. I just love poker so much. There’s the thrill of competition, and it was pretty thrilling there at the end when I got the recent trophy.”

A one-time diehard New York Giants fan (Lawrence Taylor is his all-time favorite player), Newman has also had some success in the World Series of Poker (WSOP).

“I almost won a bracelet on two separate occasions. One with my tag team partner, who is my former coach, Paul Snead. We finished 10th. Negreanu, we had aces, he had kings and hit a one outer. I finished fourth last year in the tag team. A guy flushed me when I had him preflop, but that’s poker.”

Where Are They Now: 2008 World Series of Poker Main Event Bad Beat Victim Paul Snead

Indeed, Newman finished in 10th place in the 2017 WSOP Event #2: $10,000 Tag Team Championship alongside teammates Charlemagne Benjamin and Snead, and last year finished fourth with teammate Robert Ormont in the 2021 WSOP $1,000 Tag Team event. So what would he rather have – a WSOP gold bracelet or a WPT title?

“Oh wow, that’s a great question,” he said before thinking long and hard. “I’d say it’s pretty equal. The bracelet is prestige, but they’re both really good, they’re both amazing.”

Newman, who owns his own business, confirmed that in a couple of weeks he’ll be headed out to Vegas for the WPT World Championship at Wynn.

It’s gonna be really big,” he said with a smile.

Michael Newman
Michael Newman

Michael Newman's SHRP Titles

2016 SHRPO$570 No-Limit Hold’em$17,589
2016 RRPO$360 Pot-Limit Omaha$7,740
2017 LHPO$570 Six-Max Pot Limit Omaha$7,473
2017 RRPO$3,500 RRPO Championship$374,240
2019 LHPO$360 Ultimate Re-Entry$183,525
2021 SHRPO$400 Turbo No-Limit Hold’em$7,573
2022 RRPO$400 Turbo No-Limit Hold’em$7,136

Did You Know the World Poker Tour is Online?


The launch of WPT Global means that poker players around the world now have the chance to win their way to WPT events, win prizes and enjoy exciting games such as Poker Flips. As one of the world's largest cash game poker networks, WPT Global is available in over 50 countries and territories around the world.

WPT Global offers a large deposit match bonus: 100% on deposits up to $1,200 (using any payment method). New players depositing a minimum of $20 automatically receive this match bonus which is unlocked in $5 increments (credited straight to the cashier) for every $20 of rake contribution.

Both tournaments and cash games count towards bonus unlocking; new players have 90 days from the date of first deposit to unlock and claim their full bonus amount.

Listen to more about the WPT World Championship on the new PokerNews Podcast!

*Images courtesy of SHRPO/WPT/Drew Amato.

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PR & Media Manager for PokerNews, Podcast host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.

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