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Jonathan Taylor wins World Series of Poker

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Main Event at Lodge Casino in Black Hawk

Three rings in 2012-2013. Think about that for a minute…

World Series of Poker Circuit host Bernard Lee summed it up well when he said it’s a year that’s representative of a career for any successful tournament player.

It’s also the exact feat Jonathan Taylor accomplished Monday night at The Lodge Casino in Black Hawk. Taylor found himself at the Main Event final table with the chip lead and parlayed it into his third gold ring victory of 2012-2013. The win also awarded the Alabama-based professional $138,938.

“Winning doesn’t get old at all,” Taylor told the WSOP. “It doesn’t take long before you miss it. I’ve been lucky enough to get lucky several times this year.”

The victory came in the championship event of the WSOP Circuit’s first-ever series in Colorado. The 12-day festival was a mega success, drawing a 516-player field in the $365 No-Limit Hold’em Re-Entry event and a 421-player field in the Main Event.

The Main Event raised the bar, drawing the cream of the crop including gold bracelet champions David “ODB” Baker, Carter Phillips, Mitch Schock, and Christ Tryba as well as three-time WSOP Circuit champions David Nicholson, La Sengphet, Robert Castoire, and Justin Gardenhire.

After the last river card hit the felt at The Lodge Casino on Monday this week, Taylor joined that group of three-time champions.

His previous victories came in $365 events at IP Biloxi and Horseshoe Bossier City. Those wins awarded him $12,434 and $16,201 respectively, a far cry from his six-figure payday at The Lodge Casino. His most recent victory came on the heels of a runner-up finish in the Horseshoe Southern Indiana Main Event earlier this season, a tournament Taylor lost to two-time gold bracelet champion Dan Heimiller.

“I thought I played really well in Southern Indiana, but I didn’t think I played well heads-up,” Taylor said. “It was pretty quick and I didn’t like how I busted out at all. I really took my time at The Lodge Casino and thought everything through more.”

Taylor, whose consolation prize was being the Southern Indiana Casino Champion, became the fourth player in National Championship history to qualify multiple times in the same year and the first to do it in 2012-2013. Because he had his seat to the WSOP National Championship already locked up, Taylor’s rail, both in person and on the ESPN3 livestream, included most of the WSOP Circuit regulars. The extra seat that results from him winning the Main Event will be awarded to next eligible points earner.

Taylor bested a star-studded final table at The Lodge Casino that included the likes of WSOP gold ring champion and two-time WSOP final tablist Ashly Butler, as well as gold ring champion Kevin Eyster. The trio, referred to as “the three-headed monster,” headlined Day 3, beginning the day first, second and third in chips with 11 players remaining. By the time play reached a final table, Eyster’s chip lead was no more and it was all Taylor from then on.

Eyster finished runner-up for $85,852 while Butler finished eighth for $16,444.

Other notable in-the-money finishers include Michael Taylor (45th), Jonathan Hilton (30th), David “ODB” Baker (28th), Drazen Ilich (25th), Ting Ho (10th) and Rosie Paules (fifth). Full results are available on WSOP.com.

The Main Event was the 10th of 12 gold ring events on the WSOP Circuit schedule at The Lodge Casino. The $1,675 No-Limit Hold’em tournament attracted 421 entries. The total prize pool came to $631,500 and the top 45 players were paid.

The tournament featured three starting flights. Flight A began Friday at 11 a.m. with 178 entrants and lasted 12 levels. A total of 54 players bagged.

Flight B began Friday at 7 p.m. and attracted 79 entrants. A total of 22 players bagged this flight.

Flight C began Saturday at 11 a.m. and attracted 150 entrants. A total of 57 players bagged this flight. Registration remained open until the beginning of Day 2 and a total of 14 players registered between the conclusion of Day 1C and the beginning of Day 2.

Day 2 began Sunday at 11 a.m. with 147 players remaining and played down to 11 following 13 levels of play.

Day 3 began at 12 p.m. and the nine-handed final table was up and running by 1:15 p.m. It concluded at about 10 p.m. making the duration of the finale eight hours and 45 minutes including a one-hour and 20-minute dinner break. (NOTE: final table blinds and antes began at 3,000/10,000/20,000)

Seat 1: Jonathan Taylor – 1,800,000

Seat 2: Jerry Johnson – 462,000

Seat 3: Allan Hedin – 1,106,000

Seat 4: Ashly Butler – 1,200,000

Seat 5: Isaac Kirchner – 490,000

Seat 6: Larry Blazer – 530,000

Seat 7: Kevin Eyster – 1,610,000

Seat 8: Benjamin Kim – 339,000

Seat 9: Rosie Paules – 801,000

About the final table:

1st: Jonathan Taylor – $138,938

Hometown: Phil Campbell, AL

Occupation: Professional poker player

WSOP Circuit earnings: $117,533

2nd: Kevin Eyster – $85,852

Hometown: Lafayette, LA

Occupation: Professional poker player

WSOP Circuit earnings: $38,958

3rd: Allan Hedin – $62,733

Hometown: Evergreen, CO

Occupation: Professional gambler

WSOP Circuit earnings: $5,453

4th: Jerry Johnson – $46,579

Hometown: Aurora, CO

Occupation: Service technician

WSOP Circuit earnings: $1,914

5th: Rosie Paules – $35,124

Hometown: Torrington, WY

WSOP Circuit earnings: $0

6th: Benjamin Kim – $26,883

Hometown: Denver, CO

Occupation: College professor

WSOP Circuit earnings: $0

7th: Larry Blazer – $20,877

Hometown: Henderson, CO

Occupation: Auto mechanic/shop owner

WSOP Circuit earnings: $0

8th: Ashly Butler – $16,444

Hometown: New Orleans, LA

Occupation: Professional poker players

WSOP Circuit earnings: $25,415

WSOP earnings: $134,595

9th: Isaac Kirchner – $13,135

Hometown: Denver, CO

Occupation: Engineer

WSOP Circuit earnings: $0

WSOP earnings: $42,534

Notes on the event:

Bryan Campanello needed a fifth-place finish or better to earn Casino Champion honors. He finished 11th for $10,634.

Ting Ho finished 10th, narrowly missing the final table and leaving Rosie Paules as the lone female of the bunch. Paules finished fifth for $35,124.

Here is the list of gold ring winners from The Lodge Casino:

EVENT #1: Bryan Campanello defeated 301 players ($365 NLH) for $21,223

EVENT #2: Jonathan Alfonso defeated 272 players ($365 NLH) for $19,586

EVENT #3: Mitch Schock defeated 516 players ($365 NLH Re-Entry) for $33,284

EVENT #4: Ryan Lenaghan defeated 219 players ($365 NLH) for $16,426

EVENT #5: Chris Parsons defeated 188 players ($365 NLH) for $14,661

EVENT #6: Eric Varnado defeated 148 players ($365 Limit O8) for $12,434

EVENT #7: Jason Tulloss defeated 196 players ($365 NLH) for $15,289

EVENT #8: Ray Henson defeated 215 players ($365 NLH) for $16,128

EVENT #9: Michael Sanders defeated 187 players ($580 NLH) for $24,312

MAIN EVENT: Jonathan Taylor defeated 421 players ($1,675 NLH) for $138,938

EVENT 11: Allen Kessler defeated 149 players ($580 NLH) for $20,859
EVENT 12: Steven Cohen defeated 145 players ($356 NLH Turbo for $12,181

With the conclusion of the Main Event the 2012-2013 WSOP Circuit series at The Lodge Casino is over. WSOP Circuit Action starts up again at Foxwoods Resort and Casino March 27.

For more information about the World Series of Poker Circuit, be sure to follow us on Twitter @WSOP or check out WSOP.com.

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