$

Awarded to date

Grand Falls Casino

August 19 - 27, 2017

 
  • Level: 27
  • Blinds: 25000 / 50000
  • Ante: 5000
From Morocco to Minnesota: Ahmed Taleb Wins MSPT Grand Falls for $54,089
Created (8/27/2017 9:24:31 PM by Chad Holloway)

The 2017 MSPT Grand Falls Casino $1,100 Main Event drew 216 entrants (105 on 1A, 111 on 1B), which was up from last year’s 187 runners. After two days of play, 25-year-old Ahmed Taleb, who was literally the last player to enter the tournament, emerged victorious to capture a $54,098 prize for his first-ever MSPT cash.

“I’m feeling great, man,” said Taleb, who came to the United States four years ago from Morocco to study. “My first tournament, and my first buy-in in a MSPT. I came here, I fired a bullet in the qualifier and didn’t qualify. I was debating should I play, should I not, and then I played cash and ran really good. I decided to fire a bullet at the last minute.”

Taleb, who works and studies at a university while playing poker on the side, said that we will next see him at the MSPT Running Aces in September. In the meantime, he enjoyed his first visit to a new casino.

“This was my first time at Grand Falls,” he said. “It’s great. Probably lucky for me it’s my first time here and I’m winning.”

Final Table Results
1 Ahmed Taleb (Moorhead, MN) $54,089
2 Lucas Christoffer (Marshall, MN) $32,243
3 JW Nelson (Alta, IA) $20,594
4 Aaron Johnson (Red Wing, MN) $14,769
5 Harold Brenden (Rapid City, SD) $11,441
6 Wesley Ismay (Vale, SD) $9,361
7 Swadeep Mishra (Sioux Falls, SD) $7,801
8 Kurt Bales (Cedar Falls, IA) $6,449
9 Ted Takasaki (Sioux Falls, SD) $5,409
10 Erick Woehlhaff (Sioux Falls, SD) $4,160

Day 2 started with 41 players returning to action, but with only 27 of them getting paid more than a dozen would leave empty handed. Among them were two-time MSPT champ John Hayes, Wisconsin’s Yao “YY” Yin, and bubble boy Doug Ficken.

Those who cashed but fell short of the final table included MSPT regular Todd Melander (26th - $1,872), last year’s 10th-place finisher Robbin Green (18th - $2,392), 2017 South Dakota State Poker Champion Ryan Skluzak (17th - $2,392), last year’s 3rd-place finisher Joe Barnard (14th - $3,120), and Bill Eichel (11th - $4,160).

Swadeep Mishra began the final table as the only player over a million (1.188 million), while his next closest competition was Aaron Johnson (724,000) and JW Nelson (649,000). The other seven players were all under 413,000 with the blinds at 6,000/12,000/2,000.

Erick Woehlhaff was the first to go after his five-six suited failed to get there against the ace-eight of Mishra, and then defending champ Ted Takasaki, a professional fisherman and member of the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame, followed him out the door in ninth place. It happened when Takasaki jammed eight big blinds with pocket tens only to run into Nelson’s pocket queens.

Kurt Bales was the next to go after he failed to win a race with ace-queen suited against Mishra’s two black eights. Surprisingly, Mishra took his leave shortly thereafter. He had clashed numerous times with Nelson, who got the better of him time and again. However, it was Lucas Christoffer who dealt the biggest blow with aces and eights against Mishra’s aces and deuces.

Wesley Ismay, who was second in chips at the time, wound up busting in sixth place after getting it in with straight and flush draws, plus two overs, to Nelson’s flopped middle pair. It ended up being too many outs for Ismay and he bricked both the turn and river.

The short-stacked Harold Brenden was bounced in fifth when his queen-six fell to Christoffer’s ace-queen, and then Johnson exited in fourth when his ace-nine suited ran into Taleb’s pocket kings.

Nelson, the Day 1B chip leader, was ousted in third place after flopping a pair of threes and getting it in against Taleb, who had him crushed with pocket fours. That set up a heads-up match with Taleb holding 2.7 million to Christoffer’s 1.6 million, but the counts soon flipped when the latter doubled holding ace-king against the former’s pocket jacks.

The two proceeded to battle back and forth for the next 90 minutes, and eventually Taleb sealed the deal after flopping two pair with eight-nine and getting it in on the turn, which gave Christoffer top pair with top kicker.

Season 8 of the MSPT continues in three weeks at Minnesota’s Running Aces Casino, which is just north of the Twin Cities. For more information on that stop, click here.

  • Level: 27
  • Blinds: 25000 / 50000
  • Ante: 5000
Lucas Christoffer Eliminated in 2nd Place ($32,243)
Created (8/27/2017 9:19:18 PM by Chad Holloway)
Lucas Christoffer

Lucas Christoffer raised to 135,000 from the button and Ahmed Taleb called from the button.

When the flop came down  9c 8s 5s, both players checked and the dealer burned and turned the  kh.

Taleb checked, Christoffer bet 150,000, and Taleb check-raised all in. Christoffer snap-called off.

Christoffer:  as kc
Taleb:  8d 9d

Christoffer turned top pair but he needed to hit as Taleb had flopped two pair. The  10d river was of no consequence and Christoffer had to settle for second place.

Lucas Christoffer – Eliminated in 2nd Place ($32,243)

  • Level: 27
  • Blinds: 25000 / 50000
  • Ante: 5000
Ahmed Taleb Doubles Through Lucas Christoffer
Created (8/27/2017 8:52:10 PM by Chad Holloway)

Lucas Christoffer raised to 140,000 from the button and then called when Ahmed Taleb moved all in for 1.4 million.

Christoffer:  da jc
Taleb:  ah qh

Taleb had the better kicker and it earned him the double after the board ran out  3s 7h qd 3d kd.

Ahmed Taleb - 2.8 million (56 bb)
Lucas Christoffer - 1.5 million (30 bb)

  • Level: 27
  • Blinds: 25000 / 50000
  • Ante: 5000
No knockout yet
Created (8/27/2017 8:39:59 PM by Eric Anderson)

Ahmed Taleb and Lucas Christoffer have been throwing jabs for the last two levels, with neither opponent doing much damage.

When  6c 4c 7d came out on the flop, Taleb jammed all in and Christoffer called looking for the knockout.

Christoffer:  kc 5c
Taleb:  2d 4d

Taleb paired the board, but Christoffer could eliminate him with his many draws. The  8d gave Christoffer the straight, but the  5d gave Taleb the flush and this match is far from over!

Lucas Christoffer 3,100,000 (62 bb)
Ahmed Taleb 1,200,000 (24 bb)

  • Level: 25
  • Blinds: 15000 / 30000
  • Ante: 5000
Lucas Christoffer Doubles Through Ahmed Taleb
Created (8/27/2017 7:38:27 PM by Chad Holloway)

Ahmed Taleb limped the button and Lucas Christoffer raised the big blind to 130,000. Taleb then popped it to 330,000 and called when Christoffer moved all in for 1.336 million.

Christoffer:  as kh
Taleb:  jh js

It was a classic flip, but not after the  9c ah 2d flop paired Christoffer. Neither the  5c turn nor  5d river changed a thing and Christoffer took over the chip lead.

Lucas Christoffer - 2.7 million
Ahmed Taleb - 1.6 million

  • Level: 25
  • Blinds: 15000 / 30000
  • Ante: 4000
JW Nelson Eliminated in 3rd Place ($20,594)
Created (8/27/2017 7:29:04 PM by Chad Holloway)
JW Nelson

Ahmed Taleb limped the small blind and JW Nelson, who finished Day 1B as chip leader, checked from the big blind to see a  2s 3d 8c flop.

Taleb check-called a bet of 100,000 and then checked for a second time on the  5c turn. Nelson moved all in for 660,000 and Taleb wasted little time in making the call.

Taleb:  4h 4c
Nelson:  3s 9c

Taleb was ahead and he scored the KO after the  jd appeared on the river.

JW Nelson – Eliminated in 3rd Place ($20,594)

  • Level: 25
  • Blinds: 15000 / 30000
  • Ante: 4000
Aaron Johnson Eliminated in 4th Place ($14,769)
Created (8/27/2017 7:26:05 PM by Chad Holloway)
Aaron Johnson

Action folded to Aaron Johnson in the small blind and he just limped. Ahmed Taleb then exercised his option from the big with a raise to 180,000, and he snap-called when Johnson moved all in.

Taleb:  kh ks
Johnson:  ah 9h

The  4c kc 7s flop left Johnson drawing dead, and he watched helplessly as the turn and river came the  6h and  9d respectively.

Ahmed Taleb - 1.95 million (65 bb)
Aaron Johnson – Eliminated in 4th Place ($14,769)

  • Level: 24
  • Blinds: 12000 / 24000
  • Ante: 4000
Harold Brenden Eliminated in 5th Place ($11,441)
Created (8/27/2017 7:10:18 PM by Chad Holloway)
Harold Brenden

Action folded to Lucas Christoffer in the small blind and he just limped. Harold Brenden, who had been nursing the short stack, then moved all in for 185,000 and Christoffer snap-called.

Christoffer:  as qh
Brenden:  qd 6c

Brenden had a kicker problem and he ended up getting straightened out after the board came down  kh 10c 10d jc2d.

Harold Brenden – Eliminated in 5th Place ($11,441)

  • Level: 24
  • Blinds: 12000 / 24000
  • Ante: 4000
Lucas Christoffer Doubles Through JW Nelson
Created (8/27/2017 6:56:58 PM by Chad Holloway)

JW Nelson limped the button and then called when Lucas Christoffer raised to 80,000 from the small blind. Christoffer led out for 100,000 on the  2s 8s ks flop, Nelson called, and the dealer burned and turned the  jh.

Christoffer checked, Nelson bet 100,000, and Christoffer moved all in for 317,000 more. Eventually Nelson called and the cards were turned up.

Christoffer:  qs qd
Nelson:  9s 8h

Christoffer was way out in front and shipped the double after the  qh appeared on the river.

JW Nelson - 1.35 million (56 bb)
Lucas Christoffer - 1.2 million (50 bb)

  • Level: 24
  • Blinds: 12000 / 24000
  • Ante: 4000
Wesley Ismay Eliminated in 6th Place ($9,361)
Created (8/27/2017 6:50:36 PM by Eric Anderson)
Wesley Ismay

Immediately after break, chip leader JW Nelson and second in chips, Welsey Ismay, got into a preflop raising war before seeing a  js 10s 5s flop.

Ismay opened for 180,000 and Nelson figured out the amount needed to raise, finally putting in 360,000. Ismay immediately raised all in and Nelson hit the tank for three minutes before finally calling.

The cards were turned over and Nelson was ahead with middle pair, but Ismay held an over card, straight draw, and flush draw!

Nelson:  ah 10h
Ismay:  as qh

The board ran out the  jc on the turn and then the  9c on the river. With that, Nelson took down the massive pot and sent Ismay to the rail.

JW Nelson: 2,000,000 (83 bb)
Wesley Ismay - Eliminated in 6th Place ($9,361)

 
 
Player Name
City
State
Country
Chips
Progress
MN 
4,300,000
4,300,000 
Alta 
IA 
0
Busted 
Vale 
SD 
0
Busted 
SD 
0
Busted 
WY 
0
Busted 
 
SD 
0
Busted 
 
ND 
0
Busted 
SD 
0
Busted 
 
WI 
0
Busted 
 
MN 
0
Busted 
 
Waukee 
IA 
0
Busted 
 
SD 
0
Busted 
MN 
0
Busted 
 
SD 
0
Busted 
 
MN 
0
Busted 
 
Forman 
ND 
0
Busted 
 
Bradon 
SD 
0
Busted 
 
Rank
Player Name
City
State
Country
Amount
Points
1
MN 
$54,089 
1,200 
2
MN 
$32,243 
1,000 
3
Alta 
IA 
$20,594 
900 
4
MN 
$14,769 
800 
5
SD 
$11,441 
700 
6
Vale 
SD 
$9,361 
600 
7
SD 
$7,801 
500 
8
IA 
$6,449 
400 
9
SD 
$5,409 
300 
10
SD 
$4,160 
200 
11
SD 
$4,160 
200 
12
SD 
$4,160 
200 
13
MN 
$3,120 
150 
14
MN 
$3,120 
150 
15
SD 
$3,120 
150 
16
SD 
$2,392 
100 
17
SD 
$2,392 
100 
18
Groton 
SD 
$2,392 
100 
19
SD 
$1,872 
50 
20
MN 
$1,872 
50 
21
SD 
$1,872 
50 
22
SD 
$1,872 
50 
23
SD 
$1,872 
50 
24
WY 
$1,872 
50 
25
SD 
$1,872 
50 
26
MN 
$1,872 
50 
27
ND 
$1,872 
50 
LEVEL INFO
Level
26
Blinds
25000 / 50000
Ante
5000
TOURNAMENT INFO
Entries
216
Players Remaining
1
Average Chip Stack
4,320,000
Total Chips
4,320,000
TOP 10 CHIP COUNT
RANK
PLAYER
CHIPS
4,300,000
0
0
SEASON TOP 10 POY POINTS
RANK
PLAYER
CHIPS
5,617
4,400
4,300
3,650
3,100
3,000
2,750
2,500
2,350
10 
2,292