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In this edition of our PokerGuru 3-Bet, our first two stories are tournament reports, where absolute unknowns outlasted pros to take home the title at popular events. The final story is about Amaya sponsoring an art project based on brain parts used for decision-making in skill games like poker.
Keith Heine emerged the winner of The Mid-States Poker Tour (MSPT) $1,100 Main Event for of $100,981. Held at the Meskwaki Casino in Tama, Iowa, the event drew 409 hopefuls and the final table had notables such as former MSPT champions Muneer Ahmed and Dan Sun, and three-time Heartland Poker Tour champion Shawn Roberts.
Heine in comparison came with a prior score of just $12,000 in cashes, but bulldozed his way to the final table as a chip leader, after several eliminations. He continued the onslaught with more and Shawn Roberts and Chris Scionti were the first two to exit the final table at tenth and ninth places respectively. Heine then went on to bust Dan Sun and Chunlie Yuan at eighth and seventh place.
After the exit of Kevin Berthelsen at sixth and Muneer Ahmed at fifth, Heine began a non-stop elimination spree all the way to the title, busting TJ Ryan at fourth and Jason Crews at third place.
Heads up saw Heine’s stack towering over Ryan Phan’s meager one. The final hand was quick to come and saw Phan call with against Heine’s . The flop with was bad for Phan and the turn ended his tournament run at second place for $58,296, while Heine was declared champion.
Cory Bogert Grabs First Big Win at HPO Main Event
Cory Bogert had only $2,322 in live earnings across the past five years and then he won $41,690, after taking down the Hollywood Poker Open St. Louis Regional Main Event. He told PokerNews.com that he was an online pro at 17 and usually played only cash games.
Bogert beat an entry-field of 257 and struck a deal with Jeremy Scharf, who made second place and got a larger share of $45,970 and Lloyd Ney, who made third for $37,750.
The popular event had the likes of HPO ambassador Chris Moneymaker, six-time World Series of Poker Circuit ring winner Kyle Cartwright, and hometown hero Josh Turner in attendance. Turner made an 18th place finish for $3,213, but due to earlier success at the HPO St. Louis stop this year, won the leaderboard for the third consecutive year and received a $2,500 seat to the HPO Championship Event.
Bogert began the final table in the middle of the pack in chip counts and eliminated Michael Kamenjarin at eighth place to improve his lot. He then took a massive pot from Don Baumer, the start-of-the-day chipleader. Baumer was shortly thereafter railed by Scharf at fifth place.
Three-handed play saw a deal and Ney exited first at third place. Bogert finished off Scharf at second place and took the title a little later. Bogert took home the cash prize of $41,690, as well as a $2,500 seat to the HPO Championship Event to be held at the M Resort in Las Vegas this June.
Gaming conglomerate, Amaya Inc, parent company of PokerStars has sponsored an art piece that will be inspired by the brain-skills required for poker. The piece will be a part of the ongoing “The Brain Project” by Canadian national telecommunications company TELUS and will feature art works by several leading artists, promoting awareness about brain health.
Enthusiasing about the commission, David Baazov, CEO Amaya said, “Amaya is happy to support the The Brain Project and to advance public awareness of important issues surrounding mental health and awareness.”
Amaya has tied up with Ron Wild, digital modern artist, who will create a sculpture representing the core areas of the brain used while making strategic and creative decisions in competitive sports, such as poker and chess. The sculpture will be made using an extreme mapping montage technique.
The Brain Project already has more than 50 artists participating, including pop-graffiti street artist Mr. Brainwash, cartoon-style illustration artist Gary Taxali, local Toronto painter Samara Shuter, and industrial designer Karim Rashid.
After completion the art works will be displayed across popular public areas of Toronto and the public will vote for the top five works. These will then be auctioned, with the proceeds going to the Baycrest Foundation, which works towards improving cognitive functions and emotional well-being in the elderly.
Pointing out how playing poker stimulates the brain, Baazov added, “Poker is a mind sport and a form of entertainment which heavily encompasses strategic thought, helping to keep the brain healthy and active. Many of the poker world’s top players find a healthy diet means a healthy mind, and a healthy mind means better results.”