In its seven-season history the Mid-States Poker Tour has experienced some noteworthy records including a back-to-back winner, six two-time champs, and the first female champ. However, until April 24, 2016 no one had successfully defended his or her title.
The MSPT Canterbury Park Main Event in Shakopee, Minnesota attracted 376 entries (184 Day 1a; 192 Day 1b) and created a total prize pool of $376,000, nearly double the advertised $200,000 guarantee. After an unusually speedy Day 2, 31-year-old Carl Carodenuto, who topped a field of 470 entrants to win this very event back in December, once again walked away with the title, not to mention a $90,805 first-place prize.
"I'm pretty mesmerized," said Carodenuto, who qualified for the tournament via a $250 satellite." "I'm in shock. It hasn't completely hit me all the way, but I'm just really proud of myself."
Carodenuto added that he will be out in Las Vegas this summer, but can you expect him back at Canterbury Park at the end of December?
"Absolutely, I've got to try to defend again," he said. With the win, which also made him the tour's seventh two-time champ, Carodenuto brought his lifetime tournament earnings up to $305,106.
Day 2 say 64 players returned to action, which meant 28 needed to go before the money was reached. Among those to leave empty handed were MSPT Pro Blake Bohn, high-rolling businessman John Morgan, and the MSPT's all-time money winner Peixin Liu. Likewise, Everett Willberg, who had won his way into the tournament via a bar league freeroll, fell as bubble boy in 37th place, the result of flopping top pair with a flush draw only to run into bottom set.
Among those to notch a cash were brothers Tony & Ryan Hartmann (31st and 35th respectively); father-and-son combo Brett & Josh Reichard (13th And 30th); as well as the last woman standing, Jay Philips (27th - $2,906), two-time MSPT champ Johnny Hayes (23rd - $2,906); MSPT Potawatomi champ Travis Lauson (18th - $3,632); and World Series of Poker bracelet winner John Reading (17th - $3,632).
There were some interesting storylines at the final table including the appearance of bracelet winner Adam Friedman and former champ Dan "DQ" Hendrickson, though all eyes were focused on Carodenuto, who began the final table as chip leader and proceeded to steamroll the competition.
Hendrickson's run at a second title came up short when he ran Big Slick straight into aces, and not long after Scott Johnson did the exact same thing to bust in ninth place to Carodenuto.
The "Crazy Carl" show continued as one by one his opponents hit the rail until he found himself heads up holding a significant chip lead against local cash game pro Gennady Shimelfarb, who had previously made a MSPT final table on three occasions, never finishing better than eighth.
Shimelfarb held his own for a bit, but ultimately fell when his king-queen was flushed by Carodenuto's ace-jack suited.