Not only did the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event wrap up on Wednesday with Kevin Schulz taking down the title, but the PCA High Roller Event also crowned a winner. Ilkin Garibli (pictured) won the record-breaking $25,000 buy-in tournament after a heads-up chop with PocketFiver Joe daPHUNNIEman Kuether.
Interestingly, Garibli wasn’t even planning on playing in the High Roller Event. The 26-year-old is from far away Azerbaijan and was vacationing in the Bahamas when he heard about the tournament and his friends coaxed him into entering. A few days later, Garibli was $1.1 million richer, while Kuether earned $1 million for second place.
Garibli told PokerStars, “It’s my first time I decided to play a tournament. I normally just play cash games with friends. And as you can see it has worked out quite well.” Once the bubble burst, he seemingly portended his own finish, telling PokerStars, “To be honest I’m happy I cashed, but let’s just say I’d rather win first place. The pay jumps between sixth and seventh don’t really affect me that much. So, I’m going for the big money. I hope that can happen.”
Despite holding better than a 2:1 lead in chips at the time of the chop, Garibli agreed to split the prize pool evenly. The blinds were at 60,000-120,000-20,000 when the deal was struck, with one person commenting on Twitter, “Best chop ever?”
The final eight in the High Roller Event included some of poker’s top minds. Here’s how the group cashed out:
1. Ilkin Garibli – $1,105,040
2. Joe daPHUNNIEmanKuether – $1,050,000
3. Oleksii Khoroshenin – $629,460
4. Jean-Pascal Savard – $508,080
5. Scott Seiver – $398,340
6. Nick Petrangelo – $301,500
7. Faraz The-Toilet Jaka – $221,440
8. Dan Heimiller – $162,700
Khoroshenin, who finished in third place, won EPT Vienna, while Seiver, who took fifth, took down the 2013 PCA Super High Roller Event. Kuether, meanwhile, won a $5K side event at last year’s PCA and continues to churn out solid results. Jaka is a longtime member of PocketFives and #90 on poker’s all-time money list, according to the Hendon Mob.