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  1. [caption width="640"] Sam Panzica won WPT bestbet Bounty Scramble for his third live win of 2016 (WPT photo / Joe Giron)[/caption] Sam Panzica might not be allowed to play World Series of Poker events anymore, but he can now call himself a World Poker Tour champion. Panzica beat Richard Malone Jr. heads-up and survived a final table that included former WPT winners Noah Schwartz and Tyler Patterson to win the WPT bestbet Bounty Scramble and $354,335. Panzica was banned from all Caesars properties in 2013 after being removed from the rail by security during the 2013 November Nine. He has appealed the lifetime ban and been denied making it impossible for him to play WSOP or WSOP Circuit events at any Caesars property. Things got chaotic on the very first hand of the final table. Malone raised to 150,000 from the button and Paul Balzano re-raised from the small blind to 380,000 and Malone called. After the [poker card="js"][poker card="6s"][poker card="4h"] flop, Malone called Balzano’s 300,000 bet. The turn was the [poker card="tc"] and Balzano moved all in for 1,180,000 and Malone deliberated before calling. Balzano showed [poker card="kc"][poker card="kh"] while Malone turned over [poker card="ks"][poker card="qc"] for an open-ended straight draw. The river was the [poker card="9h"] to give Malone his straight and send Balzano packing. That hand moved Malone, who started the day second in chips behind Panzica, into the chip lead. Just nine hands later he picked up another big stack after eliminating the most accomplished player at the table. Action folded to Schwartz on the button and he moved all in for 870,000. Panzica folded his small blind but Malone called and tabled [poker card="ah"][poker card="kh"] which had Schwartz’s [poker card="ks"][poker card="qh"] dominated. The board ran out [poker card="6h"][poker card="5s"][poker card="5d"][poker card="2s"][poker card="5c"] to eliminate the two-time WPT champion Schwartz in fifth place and extend Malone’s chip lead. It took a little bit longer for the next elimination, but it still came at the hands of Malone. After Malone raised to 155,000 from the button, Patterson, the defending champion and last remaining bounty in the tournament, moved all in for 860,000 from the small blind. Ankush Mandavia then came over the top for his last 2,025,000. Malone took some time to consider his action before calling. Patterson showed [poker card="kh"][poker card="kd"], Mandavia showed [poker card="th"][poker card="th"] and Malone needed help with [poker card="as"][poker card="qs"]. The [poker card="8s"][poker card="4h"][poker card="2h"] flop left Patterson ahead, but the [poker card="ac"] turn put Malone ahead with a pair of his aces. The [poker card="5s"] river changed nothing and Malone eliminated two players on one hand to get heads up with Panzica. With just two players remaining, Malone had a nearly 2-1 chip lead but over the course of 145 hands Panzica’s experience shined through and allowed him to take a commanding chip lead and eventually eliminate Malone. On the final hand of the night Panzica moved all in from the big blind and Malone called all in for 2,575,000 and tabled [poker card="ac"][poker card="3d"]. Panzica was behind with [poker card="kh"][poker card="9c"] and got no help from the [poker card="8s"][poker card="7d"][poker card="5s"] flop. The [poker card="9s"] turn changed that though and when the [poker card="kc"] river didn’t put Malone back out in front, Panzica had eliminated Malone to win his first WPT title and $354,335. This win is just part of what some might describe as a breakout year for Panzica. In February he won the European Poker Tour Dublin High Roller for $418,704. He then won the Florida State Poker Championship at Pompano Beach in July for $117,282. The three victories are the only three live victories for the 24 year old poker pro. Final Table Payouts Sam Panzica - $354,335 Richard Malone Jr. - $237,616 Ankush Mandavia - $152,766 Tyler Patterson - $100,643 Noah Schwartz - $77,499 Paul Balzano - $64,183
  2. A crazy Saturday at the 2019 World Series of Poker saw four players all win their first career WSOP bracelet, including online poker legend Isaac Baron, as well as another record-setting field in the Millionaire Maker. Murilo Figueredo Gives Brazil First Win of 2019 in $1,500 HORSE To say that Brazilian players are passionate about poker would be an understatement. When one of their players make a WSOP final table, the rail is usually packed with fellow countrymen. Saturday was no exception as Murilo Figueredo beat Jason Stockfish heads-up to win the $1,500 HORSE event for the first Brazilian win this summer. “It's amazing to have all the best players from Brazil here. I've known them for a long time. Some of them I've been playing with for more than 13 years," Figueredo said after his win. "They are my big friends, and to win here with them watching, I just don't have words to describe it.” Figueredo and Stockfish returned on Saturday to finish the event as the only two players left standing. The pair played for four hours before Figueredo emerged with the win and the $207,003 first place prize. Final Table Payouts Murilo Figueredo - $207,003 Jason Stockfish - $127,932 Gary Kosakowski - $89,730 Phillip Hui - $63,860 Chris Klodnicki - $46,127 Alex Dovzhenko - $33,822 Joe Aronesty - $25,181 Danny Woolard - $19,040 Sean Swingruber Denies Ben Yu Bracelet #4 The final four in the $10,000 Heads Up No Limit Hold'em were given Friday off so that the last three matches could be streamed on Saturday. Bracelet winners Ben Yu, Cord Garcia, and Keith Lehr were all poised to add to their collection while relative unknown Sean Swingruber was considered a bit of an afterthought. When Friday wrapped up though, it was Swingruber standing tall with the bracelet in hand. “To win this event, first try, first bracelet, it’s incredible,” Swingruber said. Swingruber beat Garcia in the semi-final and then took 3.5 hours to battle Yu before finishing him off. Swingruber, a cash game player for Los Angeles, has a very limited tournament resume. In February he finished runner-up in the LAPC One Million event for $132,220. Prior to that, he had just six cashes to his credit and none since 2014. Being an unknown commodity didn't bother the 30-year-old professional poker player though. “I honestly thought my biggest edge coming into this tournament was that people really didn’t know me. I’m not really known in the poker world. I think a lot of opponents looked me up and thought, this is gonna be an easier match.” Final Four Payouts Sean Swingruber - $186,356 Ben Yu - $115,174 Cord Garcia - $73,333 Keith Lehr -$73,333 Isaac Baron Wins $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Six Handed In the pre-Black Friday version of online poker, Isaac Baron was a legitimate boss. He's had some big live scores since then, including a third place finish at the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, but a signature win has long eluded him. Until Saturday. Baron won the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Six Handed event for $407,730 and his first gold bracelet. “It's been a long time coming to get this first bracelet," Baron said. "I've wanted it for a while. I'm just glad it was pretty easy today." Baron and Singapore's Ong Dingxiang were the only two players to return for Day 4 action and it took just 15 minutes to wrap things up. Final Table Payouts Isaac Baron - $407,739 Ong Dingxiang - $251,937 Stephen Graner - $177,085 James Hughes - $126,011 Richard Hasnip - $90,791 Cameron Marshall - $66,243 Brett Apter Tops $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Shootout Brett Apter outlasted nine other players to win the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Shootout on Saturday for his first career bracelet topping a 24-hour period that Apter doesn't want to ever forget. "I feel like I’m in a dream," Apter said after the tournament was over. "I’ve wanted this ever since I first started playing poker. And ever since I won yesterday and knew I was going to the final table, it hasn’t felt real. I’ve just been trying to live up every moment." There was a period at the final table that might have felt like a nightmare for the 31-year-old Nashville resident. Anatolii Zyrin eliminated Tommy Nguyen in third place and entered heads-up holding a 4.5-1 chip lead over Apter. Over the next two hours, Apter took over the chip lead and eventually found pocket aces to eliminate Zyrin in second place. Final Table Payouts Brett Apter - $238,824 Anatolii Zyrin - $147,594 Tommy Nguyen - $106,351 Adrian Scarpa - $77,591 Manuel Afonso Soares Ruivo - $57,326 Cary Katz - $42,897 Shintaro Baba - $32,517 Michael O'Grady - $24,973 Kenna James - $19,436 Marko Maher - $15,331 Robert Mizrachi Leads $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Final 6 Robert Mizrachi has four WSOP bracelets to his credit, and after Saturday he's in good shape to make it five. Mizrachi finished Day 3 of the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship with 3,905,000 in the bag, nearly double that of his next closest competitor. Nick Guagenti sits second with 2,000,000 while Owais Ahmed is right behind him with 1,850,000. Frankie O'Dell, who has two bracelets in Omaha Hi-Lo (2003 & 2007), sits fifth with 1,000,000. Jake Schwartz, making his second final table appearance of the 2019 WSOP, is the shortest stack with 940,000. Some of the 17 players eliminated on Saturday included David 'Bakes' Baker, Mike Wattel, Mike Matusow, Richard Ashby, Shaun Deeb, and David Benyamine. Action resumes at Noon PT and will be streamed on CBS All Access (USA, Canada, Australia) and PokerGO (all other countries). Final Table Chip Counts Robert Mizrachi - 3,905,000 Nick Guagenti - 2,000,000 Owais Ahmed - 1,850,000 Robert Campbell - 1,235,000 Frankie O'Dell - 1,000,000 Jake Schwartz - 940,000 Millionaire Maker - $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em For the first time in the seven-year history of the WSOP Millionaire Maker, the field passed the 8,000-player barrier and for a while on Saturday, it looked as if it might almost break 9,000, too. In the end, 4,887 players entered Day 1B to push the two-day total to 8,809. The previous biggest Millionaire Maker field came in 2013 when 7,977 entries built up a $10,768,950 prize pool. Noah Schwartz became the only player across both starting flights to finish with more than 1,000,000 in chips. Schwartz finished Day 1B with 1,100,300 to take a substantial chip lead into Day 2. The second biggest stack on Day 1B belonged to Erasmus Morfe with 666,000. There's another significant drop between stacks as Timothy Burden finished with 420,000 for the third best. Just 1,295 players made it through Day 1 B including JC Tran, Jeremy Ausmus, Alex Foxen, Yuval Bronshtein, Johnnie Moreno, Olivier Busquet, and Anton Wigg. Those players will combine with the 968 players who survived Day 1A on Sunday for the Day 2 restart. Top 10 Chip Counts Noah Schwartz - 1,100,300 Erasmus Morfe - 666,000 Timothy Burden - 420,000 Kfir Nahum - 384,400 Caleb King - 371,000 Kevin MacPhee - 366,500 David Farah - 359,200 Binh Ly - 345,600 Brian Kim - 344,500 Anthony Zinno Leads $1,500 Seven Card Stud Anthony Zinno sits atop the final 10 players in the $1,500 Seven Card Stud event but has an impressive group of players chasing him. Zinno finished Day 2 with 733,000. Joshua Mountain is his closest competition with 445,000. Zinno also has WSOP Circuit crusher Valentin Vornicu (409,000), three-time bracelet winners Rep Porter (281,000) and Eli Elezra (274,000) and two-time bracelet winners Scott Seiver (215,000) and David Singer (136,000) all looking to prevent him from adding a second bracelet to his collection. Play resumes at 2 PM PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Anthony Zinno - 733,000 Joshua Mountain - 445,000 Valentin Vornicu - 409,000 Rep Porter - 281,000 Eli Elezra - 274,000 Scott Seiver - 215,000 Tab Thiptinnakon - 200,000 David Singer - 136,000 Timothy Frazin - 115,000 Rodney Pardey Jr. - 45,000 Pedro Bromfman Leads $10,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Just 83 players showed up for Day 1 of the $10,000 No Limit Deuce to Seven Championship but that suits Pedro Bromfman just fine. He bagged up 470,000 for the Day 1 chip lead. He is joined by 28 more Day 1 survivors including Majid Yahyaei, who sits second with 410,000. Dan Zack, who recently won his first bracelet and wants to chase down WSOP Player of the Year honors, finished in third with 312,000. Other notables who finished Day 1 with chips include Jean-Robert Bellande, Brian Rast, Frank Kassela, John Monnette, Darren Elias, Daniel Negreanu, and Paul Volpe. Registration is open until the start of Day 2 with another 20-30 players expected to enter or take advantage of the single re-entry after busting out on Day 1. There has been no sign of Phil Ivey in this event, but some suspect he will be one of the players to register at the start of Day 2. Top 10 Chip Counts Pedro Bromfman - 470,000 Majid Yahyaei - 410,000 Daniel Zack - 312,000 Julien Martini - 285,000 Ajay Chabra - 283,500 Dan Shak - 283,500 Jean-Robert Bellande - 263,000 Jim Bechtel - 258,000 Shawn Sheikhan - 232,500 Alex Balandin - 232,000

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