Aaron Massey Scores Break-Out Win at WinStar River Poker Series

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The WinStar in Oklahoma is the fifth-largest casino in the US.

Labor Day weekend saw the conclusion of the WinStar World Casino River Poker Series main event with Illinois poker pro Aaron Massey collecting over $651,000 and his first major tournament win.

Massey, a live tournament grinder by trade, entered the final table a slight chip leader over Andy Robinson who ultimately finished second for $334,030.

The $2,100 buy-in main event played out in Thackerville, Oklahoma and drew 1,396 entries.

Adopting the re-entry format that has been gaining popularity over the last couple years, the River Poker Series main event saw many players enter all three Day 1 heats, including eventual champion Aaron Massey.

Massey busted both Day 1A and Day 1B before making it through with his last bullet and going on to win what he described as “life-changing money”.

Massey has been recording live tournament results since 2009 but nearly tripled his career earnings with his victory yesterday. His biggest previous score was a $60,461 victory in a $300 No-Limit re-entry event at the 2011 Indiana State Poker Championship.

River Poker Series Attracts Pros

The River Poker Series is seen as one of the highest value medium buy-in stops on the US circuit this year and, as expected, the relatively soft fields attracted professional poker players.

David Sands
Poker pro David "Doc" Sands finished 20th.

Cashing in the main event were David “Doc” Sands (20th), 2012 WSOP Main Event final-tablist Robert Salaburu (60th), UFC fighter Heath Herring, former world champion Chris Moneymaker (87th), Amazing Race contestant Maria Ho (90th) and two-time WSOP bracelet winner John Phan (128th).

A number of well-known poker players made the trip to Oklahoma but fell short of the money, including David “ODB” Baker, TJ Cloutier, Grant Hinkle, Chris Tryba, Mario Silvestri, Tim West, Paul Wasicka, Vanessa Selbst, Scotty Nguyen, Layne Flack, Greg Raymer and Allen Kessler.

Here are the full final table results for the 2012 River Poker Series main event at the WinStar World Casino in Thackerville, Oklahoma.

  • 1: Aaron Massey - $659,559
  • 2: Andy Robinson - $334,030
  • 3: Matt Newcombe - $195,160
  • 4: Jay Merchant - $139,400
  • 5: Peter Zhmutski - $111,520
  • 6: Patricia Cardner - $97,580
  • 7: Cord Garcia - $83,640
  • 8: Chris Hooper - $69,700
  • 9: Matt Shepsky - $62,730
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