2017 Bar Poker Open
$100,000 Guarantee Championship
Prize Pool: $104,285
December 9-11, 2017
The 2017 Bar Poker Open was another successful series that brought bar league poker players from around the country to take part in ten tournaments which culminated with the $100,000 Guaranteed Bar Poker Open National Championship. This special tournament was invitation only; some players were able to win their seat and enter for the $35 registration fee while other top league players were invited to join for the $150+$35 buy-in.
The two starting flights combined to put 706 entries into the game to top the $100,000 guarantee for the first time in the tournament’s history. Of those entries, 71 players advanced to Day 2 with Ron Burke bagging in both flights. Each flight played down into the money so everyone returned on Monday knowing they would hitting the payout desk at some point.
Ron Licari ended Flight A with a huge lead and it held on through Flight B on Sunday. He returned as the only player with a one million chip stack at the start of Day 2 and he stayed among the leaders throughout the day. Licari’s lead was not unchallenged with other players chasing him including Bill Schuch, Margie Dailey, and Manny Avila. The tournament quickly played down towards the live-stream final table and they were on the bubble before the third break of the day.
With 13 players remaining and ten making the final table, there were three sudden eliminations to get them there. Troy Velez and Dailey were eliminated on the same hand at Table 1 while Vince Buffone, the last Canadian in the tournament, went out in 11th place at the other. Tournament staff paused the clock, chips were counted, and they redrew new seats.
After an extended break for relaxation and player interviews, the final table kicked off and play continued to move along at a fast pace. James Jett, Josh Mogel, and Darin Wright were knocked out in quick succession followed by Licari, riding his big Day 2 lead to a seventh-place finish. Bill Schuch was a big stack at the start of the final table but he caught a bad beat to exit in fifth and Robert Oswald was eliminated on his heels.
Chips swapped hands during three-handed action before G Dull was sent out in another tough beat. The heads-up battle between John Beady and Avila was tight at the beginning but it did not last long. Beady called all in with a flush draw/straight draw that got there on the river to crack Avila’s kings. Tournament staff counted down the stacks and Beadle was ahead when the chips went in the middle to propel him to the title.
Avila earned $14,078 for his runner-up finish after a great run that saw him hold the chip lead for much of the final table. Beady earned $24,190 for his biggest career cash and he will take home the Bar Poker Open trophy for bragging rights in his poker league games.
Final table results:
1st: John Beady (Eastern Coast Poker) – $24,190
2nd: Manny Avila (Eastern Coast Poker) – $14,078
3rd: G Dull (KOntenders) – $8,604
4th: Robert Oswald (Riverchasers) – $7,091
5th: Bill Schuch (Riverchasers) – $5,736
6th: Wayne Phillips (Riverchasers) – $4,693
7th: Ron Licari (Riverchasers) – $3,754
8th: Darin Wright (Riverchasers) – $2,868
9th: Josh Mogel (Riverchasers) – $1,981
10th: James Jett (Deep Stacks) – $1,304