The final table started with the following players, in seat order and with chip counts:
|SEAT 1||Erick Lindgren||$74,500|
|SEAT 2||Kenny Robbins||$116,200|
|SEAT 3||Keith Quilty||$33,300|
|SEAT 4||Dariush Imani||$67,900|
|SEAT 5||Young Phan||$79,500|
|SEAT 6||Allen Goldstein||$287,000|
|SEAT 7||Ted Lawson||$35,400|
|SEAT 8||Paul Kroh||$80,000|
|SEAT 9||Anthony Reategui||$284,900|
|SEAT 10||Phil Gordon||$85,000|
After Keith Quilty was eliminated by Paul Kroh, the 'Anthony Reategui Show' started. First up was Erick Lindgren who raised all-in with an A-7 and was called by Anthony holding Q-T; a queen flopped and busted Erick.
Next it was Allen Goldstein's turn to go home, the number two player in chips. Goldstein raised pre-flop holding pocket nines and was re-raised by Anthony holding pocket queens. Goldstein then made the big mistake of moving all-in and Anthony immediately called. The queens held up and Reategui now had a massive chip lead. Why Goldstein moved in against the only guy with enough chips to bust him and, more importantly, the only player capable of calling a big re-raise without aces or kings? I don't know.
After Phil Gordon busted Dariush Imani, the action slowed down and it took another two hours before Anthony woke up again. In a three-handed pot between Kenny Robbins, Ted Lawson, and Anthony Reategui, Robbins (with K-K) re-raised an initial raise by Reategui (with 9-9). Lawson called all-in with J-J. Reategui knew he was probably beat but decided to call the raise since he enjoyed such a large chip advantage and could knock out two players if he hit a nine. Three small cards flopped and it appeared Robbins was about to triple up. Then, the card of death came. Wham! A nine on the turn crushed both Robbins and Lawson and left the huge crowd in a state of shock. The board paired on the river and Reategui took down two players with a full-house and dragged in another monster-sized pot.
On the very next hand, Young Phan had the best of it when he raised all-in with A-9. Reategui seemed to know what was coming, as he called with K♦ Q♦ and then caught running diamonds to complete a flush after an ace came on the flop. When the flush draw hit on the turn, Phan actually laid down with his back against the table and feigned death as he knew that he had no chance against Anthony's luck (see picture of this in our Event 16, $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout-photo album).
Down to three-handed, Reategui had about 85% of the chips in play. The two remaining players, Phil Gordon and Paul Kroh, sat together with hands folded, looking at each other and cracking jokes. Neither Gordon nor Kroh wanted to go first, since $70,000 was at 'stake' -- the difference between 2nd and 3rd place. Finally, as the blinds escalated, Gordon made a decision to move all-in with A-6. Reategui could afford to call the small raise in his sleep. When he flipped over a J-8, Gordon announced to the crowd: 'Phil Gordon has about a 30% chance to win!' Of course, Anthony hit a pair to eliminate Gordon.
It took about 20 minutes of heads-up play where we basically saw no flops as both players only had two moves, fold or raise all-in. In the final hand of the evening, Reategui was dealt A♦ 2♦ against Paul Kroh's K♦ Q♦ of diamonds. Nether player made a pair, which meant the ace-high was the best hand. Paul Kroh, a 59-year-old retired poker player who has won several majors around the country, earned $148,380 as the runner-up.