Seminole Hard Rock Crusher Michael Newman Seeks to Win RRPO for 2nd Time
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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
PokerNews caught up with Newman on a break from the Main Event to chat about his seventh title, seeking a WPT title, and more.
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.”
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'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|
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*Images courtesy of SHRPO/WPT/Drew Amato.
Executive Editor US, PokerNews Podcast co-host & 2013 WSOP Bracelet Winner.