Kevin Lee Makes Unplanned Stop in Winnipeg, Wins PNPC Main Event

PlayNow Poker Championship McPhillips Station Casino

Vancouver, B.C.’s Kevin Lee has won the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event in Winnipeg, Manitoba for $38,413.

Lee was driving across Canada to see the country when he stopped in Winnipeg for just one night. He heard about the series of poker tournaments happening down at McPhillips Station Casino and decided to delay the rest of his drive while he stayed and played the series.

After cashing the first event in eighth place for $2,779, Lee blanked on the second event, and then played the $1,100 Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Poker Championship — the series Main Event. He played past the money bubble, through to the final table, and on to victory, finishing as the best of the 142 entries and earning $38,413 for first place. Now that’s a profitable detour!

After Robert McLure bagged the chip lead on Day 1, Day 2 resumed play at noon on Saturday, October 3, and play continue down to six players where a deal was made to chop up the prize pool according to the current chip stacks of each player. After locking up a sum of money each of them were happy with, they continued play with an additional $12,000 still on the table for first place along with the PlayNow trophy and champion’s ring.

Eliminations followed quickly, as players gambled to build a big stack to contend for the win. Then play paused with three players remaining, and a deal was made for the remaining $12,000 and the trophy and ring actually went to third and second place. Once the agreement was made, play was ended and the cards and chips were put away.

2015 Manitoba Liquor & Lotteries Poker Championship Top 10 Results

1Kevin Lee$38,413
2Robert McLure$24,631
3Dylan Ellis$16,726
4Matt Kamezi$11,983
5Shawn Sperber$9,018
6Mark Charles$7,095
7Keith Sanburn$5,805
8Garry Jansen$4,914
9Joe Jasin$4,280
10Riley Kielich$3,820

Despite the great result, this actually wasn’t Lee’s best cash of the year. During this summer’s World Series of Poker, Lee went over to Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas for the Phamous Poker Series and finished second in a $565 event for $66,171. He also says he’ll likely be playing most of Canada’s remaining tournament series of 2015, including Vancouver, B.C.’s PlayNow Poker Championship, Regina, Saskatchewan’s Harvest Poker Classic, and Montreal, Quebec’s World Poker Tour stop.

This event also saw local favourite Dylan Ellis make a great run. He won the $600 event in this series in the spring of 2014 for $24,797.

While the Main Event played on, the fourth and final tournament on the schedule began and concluded. With 139 entries, the $300 No Limit Texas Hold’em Tournament was played from start to finish in about 10 hours, and Satnam Nijjar won the largest piece of the $52,125 prize pool.

Nijjar won the tournament outright, collecting $14,172 and the trophy. Giddy as a kid on Christmas morning, Nijjar said “I haven’t won a trophy since I was a kid playing tennis! This is a great moment.”

The event also saw Neil Bechdoldt pick up his second final table of the series, finishing fourth for $4,470 after earning $3,283 for seventh in the $600 tournament that kicked off this series. A regular of Manitoba’s and Saskatchewan’s annual poker series, Bechdoldt’s best-ever result was when he won the PlayNow Poker Championship Main Event in 2013 for $35,561.

2015 No Limit Texas Hold’em Tournament Top 10 Results

1Satnam Nijjar$14,172
2William Smith$9,113
3Chris Kramp$6,212
4Neil Bechdoldt$4,470
5Melchor Catacutan$3,382
6Robert Neudorf$2,676
7Shelley Hjelmeland$2,203
8Daniel Stimpson$1,876
9Raymond McBride$1,643
10Olivier Santos$1,474

If you would like to review our live coverage of any of the events in this series and to see the photo galleries of all the players, please visit our live reporting page.

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