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Elias, Rheem, Young & Kempton Final Four of $25K PokerGO Heads-Up Showdown

April 22, 2022
darren elias poker

The first ever $25,000 buy-in PokerGO Tour Heads-Up Showdown has condensed down from 32 players to the final four, one of whom is Darren Elias who defeated Daniel Negreanu in the quarterfinals Friday afternoon.

When the day began at noon in Las Vegas, 16 players remained, each needing to win two matches on the day to advance to the semifinals and make the money.

Hellmuth Issues Apology

Phil Hellmuth wasn't among those who reached Day 2. But he did show up to apologize to the player who defeated him in Round 1 — Eric Persson — for his inappropriate behavior.

@phil_hellmuth apologized to Eric Persson for yesterday’s outburst in the middle of the heads up match vs… https://t.co/5AouXM9hXP

— The Poker Room (@AceTangiers)

In Round 2, Alex Foxen coolered Sean Winter to win, Justin Young advanced against Shannon Shorr, Negreanu dominated Tamon Nakamura, Elias outlasted Erik Seidel, Chino Rheem beat Jeremy Ausmus, Bill Klein defeated Jake Daniels, Dan Shak beat Persson, and Isaac Kempton bested Scott Ball.

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Four Players Left are in the Money

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Negreanu reached the quarterfinals but faced a tough opponent in Elias. Things didn't go well in that match for the GGPoker ambassador as he picked the wrong time to bluff.

Elias limped on the button with {9-Spades}{8-Clubs}{6-Diamonds}{5-Diamonds} and received a call.

The flop came out {2-Spades}{k-Clubs}{4-Hearts} and both players checked to see the {9-Clubs} on the turn. Negreanu led out this time for 20,000 and his opponent, who spiked a pair, made the call. When the {9-Diamonds} appeared on the river, action checked to the only four-time World Poker Tour champion who sized up a bet of 35,000.

"DNegs" had no way to win the pot with six-high unless he raised, which he did, an all-in bet of 109,000. Elias snap-called with trips and sent the six-time WSOP bracelet winner home short of the money.

With that victory, Elias is guaranteed at least $100,000, but is chasing the $400,000 first-place prize. He's having quite a month as he also reached the final table with the chip lead in the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown and will attempt to extend his record to five career WPT titles next month in Las Vegas.

Elias will meet up with Young, who defeated Foxen in the quarterfinals, on Saturday at noon PT. The winner will take on the winner of the Rheem versus Kempton match.

Kempton, following his quarterfinals victory over Shak, said that he's the best player in the field and confident he'll win the 32-player tournament.

Each player left is guaranteed at least $100,000, the payout for fourth and third place. The runner-up will receive $200,000, and $400,000 goes to the champion.

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Rounds 4 and 5 will take place Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. on PokerGO. The final two rounds will kick off at the same time on Saturday. When all is said and done, the winner will take home $400,000 of the $800,000 prize pool. Each of the top four finishers will be paid.

*Images courtesy of PokerGO.

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