6 Mins Read
The $500 + 70 No Limit Hold’em – WPT500 had 16 starting flights which attracted 2,509 runners and generated a prize pool of $1,254,500. Held at The Bicycle casino in Los Angeles, the event had two final days of play, at the end of which Michael Copeland emerged as the winner and posted his career-best score of $181,950.
With only four previous cashes, the massive win dwarfs Copeland’s previously recorded live cashes of just over $5,000. His current total live earnings have swelled over $185,000 after this win.
Several players were in contention for the top honours but failed to make the final table including Marc Robinson (11th for $14,185), Adrian Moreno (14th for $11,440), Denny Kim (29th for $5,445), Chad Harris (44th for $4,035), Indian origin player Nikhil Gera (56th for $3,540) and Gary Miles (68th for $2,835).
Minh Nguyen finished 10th for $17,790 and became the final table bubble boy.
Final Table Chip Counts
1. Michael Copeland – 19,000,000
2. Jorge Pineda – 7,200,000
3. Erik Nason – 5,375,000
4. Aaron Messmer – 4,725,000
5. Jose Torres – 3,250,000
6. Luke Nguyen – 2,775,000
7. Travis Tachibana – 2,500,000
8. Alexander Beleson – 2,250,000
9. Sanjay Mayekar – 1,875,000
Final Table Recap
The first elimination from the nine-handed final table was Alexander Beleson. He moved all-in for 2,250,000 from the hijack and Jorge Pineda re-raised all-in, covering Beleson, from the button. The other players folded and Pineda tabled , while Beleson showed . The board ran , and Pineda’s set of aces railed Beleson in ninth place.
Next to depart was Travis Tachibana after he moved all-in from the hijack for 1,900,000 with and Pineda called from the button holding . The runout missed Tachibana and he busted out in eighth place.
Less than half an hour later, Indian-origin player Sanjay Mayekar shoved all-in from under-the-gun for 4,325,000 and Michael Copeland called from the cutoff.
Copeland picked up the lead with a set on the flop . The turn and river did not help improve Mayekar’s hand and he was eliminated in seventh place.
Finishing in sixth place was Luke Nguyen. Michael Copeland moved all-in from the button with and Nguyen called all-in from small blind holding pocket sixes. The board fanned out . Copeland found a pair of jacks on the turn and Nguyen moved on to collect the sixth place prize money.
During level 35, Erik Nason moved all-in from under-the-gun for 4,650,000. From the small bind, Aaron Messmer used a time extension chip and made the call.
The flop fell and Messmer’s picked up a set of nines, while Nason had outs to a gutshot straight. But the turn ended Nason’s hopes and the river sent Nason packing in fifth place.
With only four players left in the running, Jose Torres shoved his remaining stack of 3,600,000 from the button and Messmer called from small blind. Torres tabled and Messmer turned over . The flop came , giving Messmer a pair of jacks and Torres outs to a straight. The last two streets and missed both players and Torres was eliminated in fourth place.
After a while, Aaron Messmer shoved from the button for 6,900,000 and Copeland called from big blind. Messmer turned over against Copeland’s . The community cards spread out and Copeland flopped top pair to send Messmer packing in third place.
The heads-up play between Michael Copeland (35,500,000) and Jorge Pineda (13,450,000) began with the former in the lead. However, the confrontation did not last for long and on the final hand of the event, Pineda was all-in, preflop, on the button. Copeland had him covered and called as both players tabled their cards.
The rundown gave Pineda a pair of tens, but Copeland also flopped a stronger pair of aces, relegating Pineda to a runner-up finish as Copeland won the trophy and the top prize of $181,950.
Final Table Results (USD)
1. Michael Copeland – $181,950
2. Jorge Pineda – $120,610
3. Aaron Messmer – $87,565
4. Jose Torres – $65,330
5. Erik Nason – $49,270
6. Luke Nguyen – $37,565
7. Sanjay Mayekar – $28,960
8. Travis Tachibana – $22,570
9. Alexander Beleson – $17,790