$

Awarded to date

Canterbury Park

August 4 - 12, 2018
Regional Event: Entrants
Winner: Saad Ghanem
recap_icon

EVENT RECAP

Canterbury Park - Shakopee, MN

August 8-12, 2017

$350 Regional: 1,065 Entrants

Saad Ghanem Wins Second-Ever MSPT Canterbury Park Regional!

The second-ever MSPT $350 Regional Event held at Canterbury Park attracted 1,065 entrants, and it was 2016 MNPokerMag POY Saad Ghanem who captured a $39,542 first-place prize and the MSPT hardware after a three-way chop. The top 3 places were scheduled to pay $57,151, $35,216 and $26,258 respectively.

Ghanem, a self described “retired car jockey,” started the final table with a monster chip stack, and he described the final table as pretty easy-going. An early hand where he had jacks cracked, “...stung a little bit, but I recovered from that, I won a flip with ace-king versus queens.”

Ghanem’s final table also included 2017 MSPT Canterbury Park Regional Champ Paul Cross, who was seated directly to his left at the final table. This wasn’t a negative to Ghanem, however, and he described the experience of having the defending champ next to him as, “Pretty good actually. During the dinner break we got together to play a game of darts.”

He cited a “lot of things” that helped propel him to victory, including “Good friends, positive vibes. All the rail was pure.” When asked what plans, if any, he had for the score, he simply smiled and said, “Giving it back to the players, one day at a time.”

Wednesday’s Day 1A flight drew 216 entrants, but only 26 of them made it through, including chip leader Luke Mernin (470,500). On 1B, 234 hit the felt, with 31 of them advancing. Dana Isaacson won a mammoth flip with his jacks making quads against the ace-king of his opponent, and he bagged the overall Day 1 chip lead with a whopping 680,000.

Friday’s Day 1C drew an additional 245 runners, bringing the total field up to 695, and Nicholas Aarestad bagged 274,000 to lead the 36 survivors of the day. The fourth and final flight saw 370 entrants take their shot, and Koua Her knocked out last year’s third-place finisher Loki Abboud just before the end of the night to bag up 495,500 and the Day 1D chip lead over the 56 survivors.

108 players were slated to be paid, meaning 41 left empty-handed, including current Kimo Sabe Mezcal MSPT POY Aaron Johnson, April’s MSPT Canterbury Park Champ Rob Wazwaz, Season 6 MSPT Canterbury Park Champ “DQ” Dan Hendrickson, and bubble boy Vlad Revniaga, who got his last 2.5 big blinds in from the small blind after a raise from Duane Anderson in middle position.

Revniaga:
Anderson:

Revniaga, who had been crippled a few hands prior when his kings ran into Anderson’s aces, was again beat after a board gave Anderson top pair and sent the remaining field in the money.

Some of those players that found their way into the money included Final Table Bubble Boy Tim Ling (11th - $4,325), John Alexander (13th - $3,707), Day 1A Chip Leader Luke Mernin (17th - $3,027), Two-Time MSPT Champ Peixin Liu (18th - $3,027), Alex Winter (21st - $2,533), Zac Campbell (27th - $1,761), Day 1C Chip Leader Nicholas Aarestad (38th - $1,050), Erick Wright (44th - $1,050), Brett Kuznia (49th - $958), MNPokerMag POY Todd Melander (51st - $958), Jay Philips (52 - $958), Season 8 MSPT Running Aces Champ Jeffrey Birt (54th - $958), Matt Alexander (55th - $865), Sherry Hammers (59th - $865), Day 1D Chip Leader Koua Her (61st - $865), Michael Mernin (66th - $803), DJ Buckley (71st - $803), Rob Maier (74th - $772) “Wild” Bill Romer (85th - $680), Eric Eelkema (88th - $680) and Dennis Stevermer (100th - $649).

Here’s how things looked at the start of the final table:

Seat 1: AJ Thompson - 910,000
Seat 2: Alex Juedes - 1,730,000
Seat 3: Saad Ghanem - 5,135,000
Seat 4: Paul Cross - 2,300,000
Seat 5: Matthew Hamilton - 2,120,000
Seat 6: Dana Isaacson - 2,360,000
Seat 7: David Rutledge - 2,835,000
Seat 8: Cole Fuches - 1,250,000
Seat 9: Joshua Matti - 1,780,000
Seat 10: Mikey Wangh - 925,000

Final Table Action

Juedes was the first victim of the final table, losing a flip to Matti, leaving him with tenth-place and $4,325 for his efforts. Another flip spelled the end for Isaacson shortly after, his queens unable to fade the ace-king of Ghanem, and he left in ninth-place $5,561 richer.

Fuchs was the next to fall in eighth in Level 31 (60,000/120,000/20,000) after calling a raise in the big blind from Ghanem in the lojack to 260,000. On a flop, Fuchs jammed for 450,000 and Ghanem snapped him off.

Ghanem:
Fuchs:

Fuchs had flopped a monster, with a double-gutter straight draw, flush draw, and two overs against Ghanem’s top pair. The turn and river were safe for Ghanem, and Fuchs was left with eighth-place and $6,796 for his efforts. Rutledge found a bad spot to three-bet steal with when he ran into the kings of Hamilton, and he was left with seventh-place and $8,959.

Wangh met his end in Level 32 (80,000/160,000/20,000) when he got his last 545,000 in the middle from the lojack and was called by Cross on the button.

Wangh:
Cross:

Cross flopped trips on a flop, and Wangh was dead after the turn, leaving him heading to the payout desk after the hit the river, giving him $11,430 for his sixth-place run.

Hamilton was next to go in Level 33 (100,000/200,000/30,000) when his couldn’t catch up to Ghanem’s , and Hamilton took home $14,828 for his fifth-place finish. Cross then finished off Matti with Cross and his besting Matti’s , and while Matti took down fourth-place and $19,462, the final three; Thompson, Ghanem, and Cross, all sat nearly even in chips. They eventually worked out a deal where Ghanem and Thompson took home $39,542, while Cross, the defending champion, took home $39,541 and brings his career MSPT earnings over the six-figure mark.

The next event at Canterbury Park is a $300,000 GTD Main Event with three starting flights starting on Thursday, September 13th with the final day on Sunday, September 16th featuring MSPT Live Reporting and a Worldwide Broadcast of the Final Table. The previous Canterbury Park Main Event in April attracted a record 526 entries and saw local legend Rob Wazwaz ship the title and $109,375.

result

The RESULTS

Rank
Player Name
City
State
Amount
Points
1
MN 
$39,542
633
2
ND 
$39,542
567
3
MN 
$39,541
533
4
Perham 
MN 
$19,462
500
5
MN 
$14,828
467
6
MN 
$11,430
433
7
MN 
$8,959
400
8
MN 
$6,796
367
9
MN 
$5,561
333
10
WI 
$4,325
300
11
MN 
$4,325
300
12
MN 
$4,325
300
13
MN 
$3,707
267
14
MN 
$3,707
267
15
WI 
$3,707
267
17
MN 
$3,027
233
18
Blaine 
MN 
$3,027
233
19
MN 
$2,533
200
20
MN 
$2,533
200
21
MN 
$2,533
200
22
MN 
$2,101
167
23
MN 
$2,101
167
24
IA 
$2,101
167
25
MN 
$1,761
150
26
Fargo 
ND 
$1,761
150
27
MO 
$1,761
150
28
MN 
$1,359
133
29
MN 
$1,359
133
30
MN 
$1,359
133
31
 
$1,359
133
32
MN 
$1,359
133
33
WI 
$1,359
133
34
OR 
$1,359
133
35
MN 
$1,359
133
36
MN 
$1,359
133
37
MN 
$1,050
117
38
MN 
$1,050
117
39
Coggon 
IA 
$1,050
117
40
MN 
$1,050
117
41
ND 
$1,050
117
42
MN 
$1,050
117
43
SD 
$1,050
117
44
MN 
$1,050
117
45
MN 
$1,050
117
46
IL 
$958
100
47
MN 
$958
100
48
MN 
$958
100
49
MN 
$958
100
50
 
 
$958
100
51
MN 
$958
100
52
MN 
$958
100
53
MN 
$958
100
54
MN 
$958
100
55
MN 
$865
83
56
WI 
$865
83
57
Isanti 
MN 
$865
83
58
WI 
$865
83
59
MN 
$865
83
61
WI 
$865
83
62
MN 
$865
83
63
Fargo 
ND 
$865
83
64
MN 
$803
67
65
MN 
$803
67
66
MN 
$803
67
67
MN 
$803
67
68
Fargo 
ND 
$803
67
69
ND 
$803
67
70
MN 
$803
67
71
MN 
$803
67
72
MN 
$803
67
74
MN 
$772
50
75
MN 
$772
50
76
MN 
$772
50
77
SD 
$772
50
78
AZ 
$772
50
79
MN 
$772
50
81
Wilton 
MN 
$772
50
82
MN 
$741
33
84
MN 
$741
33
85
IA 
$741
33
86
MN 
$741
33
88
MN 
$741
33
89
MN 
$741
33
90
MN 
$741
33
92
WI 
$680
25
93
MN 
$680
25
94
MN 
$680
25
95
MN 
$680
25
96
MN 
$680
25
97
Eagan 
MN 
$680
25
98
Delano 
MN 
$680
25
99
MN 
$680
25
100
MN 
$649
17
101
Onslow 
IA 
$649
17
102
MN 
$649
17
103
MN 
$649
17
104
MN 
$649
17
105
MN 
$649
17
106
MN 
$649
17
107
MN 
$649
17
108
MN 
$649
17