US Poker Open: David Peters Comes From Nowhere to Become the Champion

The first event of Poker Central’s 2019 High Roller Triple Crown is in the books, and David Peters came from nowhere to pinch the title from Sean Winter and Stephen Chidwick.

Only 12-players could win the US Poker Open Championship with the $100,000 No-Limit Hold’em event in abeyance. 

Here they were.

US Poker Open Overall Standings

1. Sean Winter – 540 pts

2. Stephen Chidwick – 540

3. Nick Schulman – 410

4. Brandon Adams – 365

5. Koray Aldemir – 340

6. Cary Katz – 340

7. Bryn Kenney – 240

8. Lauren Roberts – 240

9. Jordan Cristos – 240

10. Ali Imsirovic – 200

11. David Peters – 200

12. Ben Yu – 200

Lauren Roberts, Jordan Cristos, Ali Imsirovic and Ben Yu skipped the event meaning only eight players could win the title going into Day 1.

The Day 1 Action

The defending champion, Stephen Chidwick, was the first contender to fall by the wayside when he moved all-in on the river, showing a set of fours on a Ts4d3sKs9s board, only for his opponent, Nick Petrangelo to be sitting behind the full force of the nut flush. Chidwick would buy back in.

Koray Aldemir began the tournament in fifth place after a victory and a runner-up finish, but the German would invest $200,000 during his quest to become the 2019 US Poker Open Champion after Justin Bonomo busted the man with a set of aces versus a rivered two-pair hand. 

Sean Winter came into the event in pole position and had an up and down Level 8 after doubling through Jason Koon AA>AK, before handing those chips to Jake Schindler when ATcc cracked pocket kings. 

Cary Katz began in sixth place after three final table finishes, but he hit the rail in a hand against Nick Schulman and Chris Hunichen. Schulman opened the action with an 8,000 raise from the cutoff and Hunichen (small), and Katz (big) both called from the blinds. The flop rained down Jc7s5c, Hunichen checked, Katz moved all-in for his remaining 8,000, Schulman called, Hunichen raised to 30,000, and Schulman called. The 7d hit the turn; Hunichen bet 22,000, and Schulman called. The 6c finished the action on the river; Hunichen checked, Schulman moved all-in for a tad over 100,000, and Hunichen folded. Katz showed Js3d for top pair, but Schulman’s Q9cc beat him when the flush got there on the river.

Brandon Adams began the day in the fourth position after making money during three events, but he too would have to invest a second $100,000 bullet if he was to earn the grandest title of all. Chris Hunichen opened from the cutoff and called when Adams moved all-in for 51,000. Adams was ahead with KdQh v Js5s, but Hunichen flopped and rivered trip jacks to send Adams to the rail.

At the end of registration, we had 33-entrants.

Only five players would make money and pick up leaderboard points. 

Here were the players in with a shot.

Sean Winter

Stephen Chidwick

Koray Aldemir

Bryn Kenney

David Peters

Schindler doubled through Winter for a second time when T8hh beat A6dd after rivering a heart flush.

The 2019 US Poker Open title would not be going to Germany after Koray Aldemir fell in the 11th Level. The winner of $50,000 event opened to 14,000, and both Martin Zamani and Jason Koon made the call. The dealer planted KcQs9s onto the flop, and Aldemir continued with a 24,000 bet. Zamani bumped it up to 100,000, Koon folded, Aldemir moved all-in, and Zamani called. Aldemir showed KsQh for the top two pairs, but Zamani had flopped the nuts holding JdTd. The board didn’t pair, or provide Aldemir with successive spades, and he was out.

Bryn Kenney doubled through Petrangelo AQ>A9. Ryan Riess doubled through David Peters AK>KQ. And the favourite to land the US Poker Open title, Sean Winter, left Jake Schindler needing a life support machine when his KQ beat the crap out of KJ.

Bryn Kenney doubled through Peters 44>AJ, but Peters would exact revenge, sending the Aussie Millions Main Event winner to the rail when QQ beat KJ in a five card race. 

Then we lost the defending champion.

Chidwick opened to 22,000 from the hijack, Zamani three-bet to 88,000 from the small blind, Chidwick four-bet all-in for 43,000, and Zamani called. 

It was a massacre.

Chidwick turned over AJ, and Zamani showed aces. 

Five community cards later and the only players in with a shot of being crowned the US Poker Open Champion were Sean Winter, Nick Schulman.

Final Table Seat Draw

Seat 1: Jason Koon – 630,000

Seat 2: Keith Tilston – 1,300,000

Seat 3: Chris Hunichen – 1,790,000

Seat 4: Sean Winter – 375,000

Seat 5: Ryan Riess – 340,000

Seat 6: Martin Zamani – 805,000

Seat 7: Nick Schulman – 125,000

Seat 8: David Peters – 640,000

Seat 9: Justin Bonomo – 595,000

Day 2: The Trials and Tribulations of Sean Winter, Nick Schulman and David Peters

Nick Schulman put himself into contention to become the US Poker Open Champion after winning the $25,000 Mixed Game event, and finishing fifth in one of the earlier $25,000 events, but his challenge would fizzle out without a murmur on the final day of the series.

Chris Hunichen opened to 35,000 from the hijack seat, and Schulman defended the big blind. The flop was AhAc8c, Schulman checked, Hunichen bet 25,000, and Schulman check-raised all-in for 115,000. Hunichen made the call and was ahead with Js8d for two pairs versus the T6cc for the flush draw. The 5h and 6h finished the action, and Schulman was out leaving Sean Winter and David Peters as the last potential winners.

Winter knew that a fifth-place finish, or more, would have locked up the title, but he never made it that far after busting in eight place. Winter moved all-in for 255,000, and Keith Tilston made the call from the big blind. It was a race with Winter’s ATcc needing to catch something to beat the pocket fives of Tilston. The flop of 7d6c4s handed Tilston an open-ended straight draw. The 8c on the turn completed that straight but gave Winter flush outs. The 3h on the river was a brick for Winter, and he left the competition after a fantastic series.

The math was simple, if David Peters was to win the event, he would surpass Winter at the top of the leaderboard by 10-points, and would be declared the 2019 US Poker Open Champion.

After Jason Koon exited in seventh place, Justin Bonomo became the official Bubble Boy of the tournament after his QJ failed to improve against the dominating AQ. 

The five remaining players had secured $264,000 in prize money.

David Peters doubled through Hunichen 66>KJ, but Zamani took a chunk from Peters when AK beat AJ. Peters then returned the favour when he got maximum value from a straight versus the two pair hand of Zamani to take the chip lead.

Keith Tilston disposed of Ryan Riess to take the chip lead from Peters when JJ beat 99 all-in pre-flop, and Tilston continued to build the biggest stack in the room when JJ beat the AT of Zamani to send the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) $25k winner home in fourth place.

Winter had a reason to chew his nails when Peters got it in with Tilston KQ v 88. Peters flopped a second queen to take the chip lead at a critical time, and he never looked back.

Tilston was the first to feel the full force of a pent up Peters after losing KQ versus A6 with all the chips in the middle. That knockout left Peters facing Hunichen with a 4.855m v 1.745m chip lead for the US Poker Open Championship.

Heads-up didn’t last long.

Hunichen limped from the button, Peters raised to 320,000, Hunichen moved all-in for 2.65m, and Peters made the call. 

Peters: 9d9c

Hunichen: Ah8c

Peters had to dodge an ace or an unruly combination of cards to become the US Poker Open Champion, and that’s what happened when JhJcTs8d6d landed on the flop, turn and river, calling time on the 2019 US Poker Open. 

Peters became the champion after making the final table of three of the ten events, finishing runner-up in the $10,000 Short-Deck, fifth in the $50,000 No-Limit Hold’em, and winning the big one. 

The win is Peters’ 25th of his career and his eighth seven-figure score. The former Global Poker Index (GPI) Player of the Year has now earned $31,590,261 in live tournament earnings with only four more players winning more. 

Final Table Results

1. David Peters – $1,320,000

2. Chris Hunichen – $858,000

3. Keith Tilston – $528,000

4. Martin Zamani – $330,000

5. Ryan Riess – $264,000

US Poker Open Overall Standings

1. David Peters – 550 pts

2. Sean Winter – 540 

3. Stephen Chidwick – 540

4. Nick Schulman – 410

5. Brandon Adams – 365

6. Koray Aldemir – 340

7. Cary Katz – 340

8. Bryn Kenney – 240

9. Lauren Roberts – 240

10. Jordan Cristos – 240

11. Ali Imsirovic – 200

12. Ben Yu – 200