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NAPT High Roller: Mercier Wins Again
Jason Mercier booked yet another win last night, taking down the 2010 PokerStars.net NAPT Mohegan Sun $25,000 High Roller Bounty Shootout.
"It feels really good and it's great timing coming into this kind of money," said Mercier, who earned a total of $475,000, including $350,000 for the final table win, $60,000 for the Round 1 win, $40,000 in bounties and $25,000 entry into the North American Poker Tour's next High Roller event for collecting the most bounties.
"I've got EPT San Remo, Monte Carlo, SCOOP and the WSOP coming up. That's a lot of big buy-in tournaments I want to play in, so it's good timing. Plus, getting a win on the NAPT in my home country, in one of the first events on the new tour, it feels great."
A 23-year-old from Davie, Florida, Mercier burst onto the live tournament scene after years of honing his game online with a win at EPT San Remo in 2008.
Since then he has amassed more than $4.8 million in career tournament earnings, including an EPT High Roller title and a WSOP Bracelet win.
With a number of stellar side event results and a fourth-place finish at the World Series of Poker Europe main event, he managed to secure Bluff Magazine's Player of the Year award in 2009.
Tuesday at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut, he wore the same shirt he had on when he won EPT San Remo, hoping it would bring him some luck.
But to book the win, Mercier had to endure through a final table that included stars like fellow EPT London High Roller champ Matt Glantz, the leader in the World Poker Tour's current Player of the Year race Faraz Jaka and 2007 WPT Mandalay Bay Poker Championship winner Shawn Buchanan.
In the end, it took four hours and a lot of luck to defeat NAPT Venetian main event runner-up Sam Stein heads-up, including doubling up with king-ten versus ace-queen after a rivered straight and turning pocket threes into another rivered straight after he was outflopped by Stein's ace-jack.
"Sam Stein was a beast heads-up," said Mercier. "He was crushing me and had built an almost 6:1 chip lead. Basically I had to gamble."
Mercier, who won his seat into the event through a $5,000 satellite held at Mohegan Sun, said the field was one of the toughest he'd faced.
"My starting table was not the toughest, but it was definitely not an easy table draw with guys like Daniel Smith and Matt Woodward," he said. "Then the final table was really tough with Shawn Buchanan, who is a great player, and Faraz Jaka, who is absolutely nuts and impossible to play against. The whole table was pretty tough."
Mercier is flying to Italy today for EPT San Remo beginning April 15. For more from the man himself check out the Jason Mercier Poker Blog exclusively here on PokerListings.