bestbet - Jacksonville, FL
January 19-22, 2017
$350 Regional Event: 561 Entrants
Mick Robilotto Wins $350 MSPT Regional at bestbet Jacksonville, $26,814!
The second Regional Event of the Mid-States Poker Tour (MSPT) Season 8, and the 15th ever held, took place at bestbet Jacksonville January 19-22. The event drew 561 runners, which surpassed the $100,000 advertised guarantee by creating a $168,300 prize pool.
After one of the most unique final tables in MSPT history, the final four players struck a deal that saw them each lock up $19,000 with $7,814 and the title to play for. After numerous chip lead changes, two outers, and a few coolers, it was 37-year-old local player Michael “Mick” Robilotto of Fernandina Beach, Florida who emerged victorious to take home $26,814.
“It’s exciting,” Robilotto said after the win. “We made a deal but there was still a lot of money up at the top, so once I got into shooting distance for the win, I really wanted to get it.”
Joining Robilotto in the final four were Jonathan Cronin, Chris Walker, and Toby Boas. At the time of the deal, Boas seemed to get the best of the bargain as he was down 2-1 in chips compared to the other three players. Still, they managed to come to terms. Despite fourth, third and second places all paying the same, everyone except Robilotto proceeded with caution.
“What difference does it make?” he says when asked about calling off to a three-bet shove from Cronin. “The king-seven was a big hand. I was just gambling; I didn’t think I was ahead. I put 300,000 in, not gonna hold a million back.”
Robilotto managed to win the race against Cronin’s pocket fours, which gave him a big chip lead. After Boas and Walker fell, Robilotto took a massive 30-1 chip lead into heads-up play against Cronin. The man from Savanah, Georgia put up a good fight, but in the end Robilotto’s chip lead proved too much to overcome… it also helped he picked up aces in the final hand.
“This is one of my top three cashes, and I’ve been playing poker a long time,” said Robilotto. “I’ll be playing in the Main Event next week.”
When it comes to bestbet Jacksonville, it’s unwise to bet against Robilotto. In October 2016, he placed 21st in the World Poker Tour Bounty Scramble Main Event for $16,380, and he also made back-to-back final tables in the MSPT bestbet $200 NLHE Prelim event finishing runner-up for $7,472 in Season 6 and seventh for $2,044 in Season 7.
Others who cashed the event were Day 1c chip leader Tan Nguyen (17th – $1,488), Day 1b chip leader Kelley Slay (10th - $2,479), and Day 1a chip leader Bryan Brozman (5th - $6,612). In addition, Brozman was awarded a $1,500 chip leader bonus in his flight, while Kelley and Tan earned $1,000 and $500 respectively. Defending champ Blake Whittington was not in attendance.