Local poker players excel in World Series of Poker
Tens of thousands of players from virtually every state and a multitude of countries around the world have descended upon Las Vegas, Nevada for the greatest competition in professional poker, the 2016 World Series of Poker.
The non-stop action began on May 31 for the 47th edition of the poker world’s longest running tournament series and will continue through July 18. There are 69 official gold bracelet events spread over 50 days with buy-ins ranging from $565 all the way up to $111,111.
A month into the competition there has been one striking trend: Four major event winners hail from the Chicago area, a remarkable statistic and a true credit to the caliber of players who frequent the poker rooms in this region.
The competition at the annual extravaganza is branded so indelibly around the world that it is considered an honor and a rarity to have multiple winners of events come from the same country let alone the same relatively small geographical region.
That said, with many major events still to be held, here is the honor roll of recently crowned Chicago area and Northwest Indiana gold bracelet winners:
Benjamin Keeline of Oswego, Illinois, who won Event #2, the Colossus II No-Limit Hold’em Tournament. Sporting a relatively small $565 buy-in, this competition attracted no less than 21,613 entries which created an incredible $10.8 million prize pool. Keeline outlasted them all to claim the $1 million first prize in epic comeback fashion.
Kyle Julius of Naperville, Illinois, who captured Event #4, the $1,000 Top Up Turbo No Limit Hold’em Tournament. His prize was $142,972.
Jean Gaspard from Evanston, Illinois, who now calls Chicago home. He won Event #11, the $10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship and a check for $306,621. The former professional basketball player at one time attended camp for the Chicago Bulls.
Alexander Ziskin won Event #29, the $1,500 No Limit Hold’em Tournament. The native of Vernon Hills, Illinois collected $401,494.
All four of the champions are veterans of competition in the World Series of Poker Room at Horseshoe Casino in Hammond with a collective bevy of prominent performances in World Series of Poker Circuit events through the years.
We’ll soon find out who’ll win the biggest poker tournament of them all, the $10,000 buy-in No Limit Hold’em World Series of Poker Main Event Championship? The globally recognized world championship of professional poker will run over 10 consecutive days from July 9 through July 18 on which day the final table participants, or “November Nine” as they have been come to be called, will be announced.