The 2010 North American Poker Tour (NAPT) Los Angeles Main Event drew to a close on Wednesday night at the Crystal Casino in California after Joe Tehan defeated Chris DeMaci in heads-up play to take out the title, the trophy and $725,000.
At the final table, DeMaci had entered the day as the big chip leader, holding nearly 2.5 million chips more than his closest competitor, Jason Mercier. Also at the final table were Canadian pro Anh Van Nguyen, Michael Binger, Tehan, Ray Henson, Al Grimes and Jake Toole.
Toole was the first player to hit the rail. After he had opened with a raise to 115,000, Tehan three-bet to 300,000. Action got back around to Toole who four-bet all-in for 1.755 million. Tehan made the call holding the and was up against Toole’s . After the board ran out , Toole was eliminated in eighth-place. He collected $60,000 for his finish while Tehan propelled himself to the chip lead.
Next out was the player everyone thought was going to walk away with the title – Jason Mercier. Mercier even wore his lucky shirt to the final table, which he wore during his wins at the EPT San Remo, EPT London and NAPT Mohegan Sun. Unfortunately for Mercier however, he had to settle for an $84,857 seventh-place finish.
Mercier opened with a min-raise to 120,000, and Henson flatted in position and on the button. DeMaci was in the small blind and also made the call. Tehan stuck in a three-bet to 515,000 from the big blind. Mercier four-bet to 1.1 million straight and that folded out Henson and DeMaci. Tehan then announced that he was all-in. Mercier made the call and put himself at risk for 3.645 million.
At the showdown, Mercier tabled the for two overcards against the for Tehan. The board ran out and Tehan won his second massive flip at the final table to bust out Mercier and increase his chip lead.
Just one hand passed after Mercier hit the rail before the next elimination. Binger was Tehan’s next unfortunate victim. Tehan raised to 125,000 and Binger reraised to 330,000. Tehan then grabbed a handful of chips and stuck out a re-raise that committed Binger for all of his chips. Binger quickly made the call and tabled the up against the for Tehan.
The board ran out to give Tehan the win. Binger collected $114,000 for his sixth-place finish.
After Binger’s elimination, Tehan did what most big stacks do – he constantly raised and put pressure on the shorter stacks at the table. When DeMaci wasn’t in the hand, Tehan was often shoving all-in to put pressure on the much shorter Nguyen, Grimes and Henson. That’s what led to the next bust out.
DeMaci had folded and Tehan moved all-in to put pressure on the shorter stacks behind him. Nguyen made the call from the button and then Henson tank-called all-in from the big blind, giving Tehan the chance to bust out two players. Tehan held the worst of it with the . Nguyen had the and Henson the .
The board ran out to give Tehan the best hand with two pair, kings and nines. A final count was conducted to see which player finished where. Henson had less chips than Nguyen, so he finished in fifth place for $145,000 while Nguyen became the fourth-place finisher and took home $195,000.
Just minutes later, Grimes got all of his money in with the against the for Tehan. Grimes had done an amazing job to get that far and figured he had to make a stand at some point. He took the lead after the flop came down but lost it on the turn when the fell. The river card dealt a third-place finish to Grimes, as well as a cool $250,000.
With Grimes out in third place, the stage was set for heads-up play. The two players left took a one-hour dinner break with the chips standing at 14.595 million for Tehan and 6.35 million for DeMaci.
Things stayed pretty much even until Tehan was able to make a big call and knock DeMaci down to around 3.7 million. Tehan raised to 200,000 on the button, the minimum raise allowed. DeMaci made a re-raise to 550,000 and Tehan called. The flop came down and DeMaci fired 450,000. Tehan made the call, and before you knew it, over two million chips were in the middle.
The turn card brought the and both players checked. Another appeared on the river and DeMaci fired out 1.125 million after taking some time. “I hope you’re not bluffing with the best hand,” Tehan said before firing in the chips to make the call. DeMaci simply replied: “You got it” and showed the for jack high. Tehan had called with the for king high and won the pot.
The two battled a bit more before heading on a 15-minute break with DeMaci down to 2.54 million and Tehan holding 18.405 million in the lead. Shortly after they returned from break, the last hand came to fruition.
Tehan raised from the button to 240,000 and DeMaci made the call. The flop came down and DeMaci checked. Tehan fired 375,000 and DeMaci moved all-in. Tehan quickly called and tabled the best hand. He held the , outperforming the for DeMaci. The turn paired the board with the and left DeMaci drawing to just a chop to stay alive. The river was the and it was all over. DeMaci and Tehan got up to shake hands and congratulate each other on their respective finishes. DeMaci took home $440,000 for his runner-up finish and Tehan netted the first-place prize of $725,000.
The win put Tehan over the $3 million mark for live tournament earnings. Coming into this final table, Tehan boasted a career in which he has won over $2.3 million. His biggest-ever win was $1,033,440 for winning the WPT Mandalay Bay Poker Championship back in 2006.