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Joe Tehan Takes Down NAPT Los Angeles Main Event for $725,000 Prize
Veteran pro Joe Tehan took down the 2010 PokerStars North American Poker Tour Los Angeles main event Wednesday.
The 30-year-old Las Vegan eliminated all seven of his competitors at the final table to claim the title and $725,000 first-place prize - his first big score since a win in the 2006 WPT Mandalay Bay Poker Championship.
"This was a great experience," said Tehan. "The turnouts at NAPT events have been getting bigger and bigger. I mean, this is a $5k tournament with over 700 players. I don’t play much outside of Vegas or L.A., so to get a turnout like this in L.A. was good. I was excited to come down and play and I’m glad I did.”
After winning a flip with ace-queen against jacks to eliminate Jake Toole, Tehan took control of the final table when his own jacks held against Jason Mercier's ace-king in a massive coin flip that eliminated the Team PokerStars Pro and PokerListings blogger.
2006 WSOP Main Event third-place finisher Michael Binger was the next to go, losing a flip with tens against Tehan's ace-jack.
Tehan then sent Canadian Team PokerStars Pro Anh Van Nguyen and 2007 WSOP Main Event 12th-place finisher Ray Henson to the rail in the same hand, spiking with king-five against ace-queen and ace-jack.
And after his jack-nine held against New Yorker Al Grimes' seven-eight of clubs, Tehan started heads-up with start-of-day chip leader Chris Demaci holding a 2:1 chip lead himself.
Demaci put up a fight, but it wasn't long before the 27-year-old from Newport Beach, California got relatively short and committed his chips after flopping top pair, only to find himself outkicked by Tehan.
NAPT Los Angeles drew 701 players from more than 20 countries to the Bicycle Casino, creating a $3.2 million prize pool.
The final table, relocated to the Crystal Casino & Hotel in Compton, California to accommodate the crew, was filmed for broadcast by ESPN2.
Next up for the NAPT is PokerStars' annual trip to Atlantis in the Bahamas Jan. 6-16 for the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure.
Tehan said he might make the trip.
"I really don’t travel much to play a lot of tournaments," he said. "They’re really stressful and I get enough of that at home. But I’ve heard the PCA is a great, great tournament and it sounds like a lot of fun, so maybe I’ll end up doing that."
Here's how the final table finished up in Los Angeles:
1 Joe Tehan $725,000
2 Chris DeMaci $440,000
3 Al Grimes $250,000
4 Anh Van Nguyen $195,000
5 Ray Henson $145,000
6 Michael Binger $114,000
7 Jason Mercier $84,857
8 Jake Toole $60,000