WSOP Weekly Round-Up: Mariz is the Big Winner as Millionaire Maker Concludes

June 16th, 2017 | by Brian Corlisse

Another week at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) is over and looking back at the highlights it’s been another successful few days inside the Rio, Las Vegas.

 Pablo Mariz Millionaire Maker.

Pablo Mariz won the largest ever WSOP Millionaire Maker this week and took home more than $1.2 million. (Image: WSOP)

The biggest story of the week came courtesy of Event #20, the $1,500 Millionaire Maker. Capitalizing on 2016’s record breaking event, the organizers kept the $1,500 tournament a main part of its new look schedule and players responded in kind by supporting the event in droves.

Mariz Makes a Millionaire’s Comeback

By the time the registration desks had closed on Day 1B, the final number of entrants stood at 7,761. That total was over 500 buy-ins more than in 2016 and meant the overall prizepool topped $10.4 million.

When the crowds had dispersed and just two player remained on Day 4, it looked as though Dejuante Alexander was going to clinch the title and more than $1.2 million. However, when the cards started to fly, it was his short stacked opponent Pablo Mariz that made all the right moves.

Within a few hands the Canadian had redressed the deficit and by hand 23 it was all over. Mariz eventually won the largest ever Millionaire Maker after his Qc Jd rivered a pair to oust Alexander’s Ac 3d.

Monnette Makes It Three

Away from the masses, John Monnette managed to take home one of the more niche titles this year when he triumphed over Per Hildebrand in the $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw Championship.

Unlike the Millionaire Maker where thousands lined up, Event #22 saw just 92 players take to the felt.

Despite its size, the $10,000 event was packed with familiar faces. Day 1 saw experienced pros such as Phil Hellmuth, Phil Galfond, Robert Mizrachi and last year’s champion Jason Mercier sit down for a chance to win a bracelet away from the Hold’em masses.

By the close of Day 3, however, it was Monnette who claimed the $256,610 to prize. A drawn-out three-way battle between Monnette, Hildebrand and Darren Elias was eventually broken by the new champion.

After taking out Elias, Monnette had an almost unassailable chip lead which he used to his advantage, taking out his Swedish opponent in just a few hands to claim his third WSOP bracelet.

Numbers Down in H.O.R.S.E Championship

The final highlight of the WSOP this week was the start of the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E event. Traditionally a tournament that brings out the game’s elite, this year’s Day 1 was no different.

Joining the crowds inside the Rio for the opening sessions was defending champion Jason Mercier as well as veterans Daniel Negreanu, Mike Sexton and Jeff Lisandro. Despite the elite field, the number of runners taking part this year was down on 2016’s total.

Last year, 171 players anted-up, but only 150 did so this time around. Although the difference is relatively small, it could be a sign that non-Hold’em events aren’t thriving quite as much as those such as the Millionaire Maker.

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