Chris Moorman ends live slump in winning 2014 LAPC
Chris Moorman has always been one of the top tournament players in the world. With online winnings in excess of ten million dollars and live winnings just shy of three million dollars the one thing that had eluded Moorman was a live major title. He came close at the 2011 WSOP Europe Main Event finishing in 2nd, collecting a not too shabby consolation prize of $1,068,690 but even Moorman would tell you that while the money was nice it was the win that mattered the most. Well now Chris can knock that monkey off of his back as he emerged victorious at the 2014 Los Angeles Poker Classic (“LAPC”) taking home $1,015,460 and adding his name to the list of World Poker Tour main event winners. 534 entrants created a staggering prize pool of $5,126,400.
Play started with many hoping to take down that seven figure first place prize. Day 1 saw it’s fair share of notables getting eliminated. among them were Faraz Jaka, David Sands, Andrew Lichtenberger, Dan Shak, Ted Forrest, Michael Mizrachi, Joseph Cheong, Matt Salsberg, John Racener, and Matt Giannetti. Plenty survived though and it was Scott Blackman who would be the chip leader with just over 190K in chips. Ali Eslami, Joe Tehan, JC Tran, and Anthony Gregg all emerged with over 100K in chips and superstars like Negreanu, Hellmuth, and Ivey also survived to play another day.
Blackman would also be on top of the leader board when play concluded on Day 2, finishing the day with 380K in chips which was 100K more than the next closest competitor, Daniel Steinberg. While Negreanu would survive, Hellmuth and Ivey were not as fortunate. Joining those two on the rail were Mike Matusow, Jeremy Ausmus, Jean Robert-Bellande, Jonathan Little, Shannon Shorr, Vanessa Selbst, Mark Newhouse, and Melanie Weisner. David Paredes ended the day with 251K and was joined by the likes of Bryn Kenney (195K), Dan O’Brien (155K), Christina Lindley (145K), Chris Moorman (143K), Greg Merson (121K), Eugene Katchalov (120K), Mike Sexton (102K), JC Tran (94K), Jason Mercier (90K), Jennifer Tilly (84K), Joe Hachem (64K), and Erik Seidel (62K) to move on to Day 3.
Day 3 would take us down to the money bubble. Only 63 would be fortunate enough to make the money and it would be Gordon Vayo who would be the unfortunate bubble when he ran Queens into Aces to finish in 64th place. Negreanu would not be among those to make the money and others joining him in that department included Paul Volpe, Marvin Rettenmaier, Yevgeniy Timoshenko, Scott Seiver, Christina Lindley, Antonio Esfandiari, JC Tran, Joe Hachem, and Erik Seidel. 3rd place finisher in the 2013 LAPC, Jesse Yaginuma, would be the end of day chip leader with 804K. Actress/poker player Jennifer Tilly was not too far behind in 3rd place with 639K in chips. Others to make the money and move on to Day 4 were Bryn Kenney (602K), Adam Friedman (520K), Dan O’Brien (450K), Mukul Pahuja (430K), Chris Moorman (359K), Matt Waxman (280K), Greg Merson (190K), Jason Mercier (142K), Mike Sexton (80K), and Jonathan Duhamel (66K).
They would play down to 18 on Day 4 and it would be Josh Neufeld at the top of the pack with 2.3 million in chips. Moorman made a significant move surging to 3rd place with 1.7 million. Jennifer Tilly’s day would not go as smoothly as the one time chip leader would fall in 22nd place. Others to fall just short of the WPT televised final table were Jonathan Duhamel (61st place), Andy Frankenberger (60th place), Justin Zaki (56th place), Mike Sexton (51st place), Jason Mercier (43rd place), Greg Merson (31st place), and Eric Buchman (20th place). Joining Neufeld and Moorman in the final 18 were Joe Serock, Adam Friedman, Hasan Habib, and Dan O’Brien.
They would play down to the final six on Day 5 and Dan O’Brien would be the televised table bubble when he was eliminated in 7th place by Michael Rocco when he got it all in with a pair of Aces on a T-9-8-K two diamond board with Rocco holding the K-Q of diamonds. Any jack, queen, king, or diamond would knock O’Brien out and it was a diamond, the 6 of diamonds to be precise, that would do the deed to end play for the day with Rocco holding the chip lead by nearly 2.5 million chips over Chris Moorman. Hasan Habib would finish in 16th place and Joe Serock also would fall short in 10th place. Our final table looked as follows:
Seat 1: Chris Moorman 3.19 million
Seat 2: Patrick Bruel 2.28 million
Seat 3: Josh Neufeld 1.93 million
Seat 4: Glenn Lafaye 1.855 million
Seat 5: Adam Friedman 1.15 million
Seat 6: Michael Rocco 5.615 million
Moorman was to not be denied, however, and he started out playing aggressively showing that he was here for one reason only – to win. Adam Friedman would be the first player eliminated when his pocket 4’s were unable to outrace the Ace-Jack of Glenn Lafaye. Friedman did have some solace, however, in the fact that he was taking home $200K for his finish. Josh Neufeld would soon follow in 5th place when his Ace-Ten was no match for Moorman’s pocket Tens. Josh would take home $264K for his efforts.
It would take nearly 75 more hands before another player would be eliminated and it would be Moorman again knocking out a player when he called Patrick Bruel’s all in on a J-8-2 board with Ace-Jack which was well ahead of the King-8 that Bruel held. Patrick would collect $332K for his 4th place finish. The hand of the tournament would then take place when all three players would be all in pre-flop. Lafaye opened for a raise and Rocco moved all in. Moorman, who had Rocco covered, also moved all in and Lafaye made the call having both players covered. Moorman held pocket 10’s, Rocco Ace-8, and Lafaye Queen-Jack. It looked like it was going to be all over and Moorman was going to fall just short again when the flop came K-Q-J to give Lafaye two pair. The river, however, was a beautiful Ace to give Moorman a straight and his third elimination of the final table as Rocco finished in 3rd place good for $423K.
Heads up play saw the two nearly even in chips and it was no surprise that the veteran Moorman would seize control. Lafaye would move all in with an open ended straight draw on a J-7-6 flop with 5-4 but it was bad timing as Chris held pocket Aces. Moorman faded the straight outs and Lafaye would have to settle for 2nd place and the $662K that came with it. An exuberant rail that included numerous top professionals mobbed Chris. Moorman would take to twitter afterwards to thank all his friends for the support:
Thanks so much for all of the love & kind messages. I read every single 1 and it’s really amazing to have such support from everyone. #lucky
— Chris Moorman (@Moorman1) March 8, 2014
And had one last thing to say…
— Chris Moorman (@Moorman1) March 7, 2014