The first World Poker Tour Champions Cup post-World Series of Poker is on the line today as the final six players from a field of 1,175 battle it out for the WPT Choctaw title. It is a strong final table with two past Champions Cup winners, with the additional benefit of being potentially history-making. Andy Hwang leads the final table entering Tuesday’s action with 10.935 million chips.
Hwang’s lead is not insignificant. His closest competitor, Darren Elias, has 8.130 million chips, nearly 3 million fewer. He is a full 35 big blinds ahead. After the two of them, there is another drop-off to the rest of the field. Alex Lynskey and Jake Schindler are nestled in the middle of the pack with under 6 million chips, while Jason Brin and Mina Greco are the short stacks, both with fewer than 2.4 million.
Andy Hwang is not unfamiliar with this territory, having won the 2013 WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open. He has cashed in four other World Poker Tour events and finished fifth in the 2012 WSOP National Championship. His career live tournament earnings are over $1.2 million, according to TheHendonMob.com.
Elias is also no stranger to this turf. He finished as the runner-up to Anthony Zinno in the WPT Season XIII Player of the Year race, finishing the season with eight cashes on tour. He also won back-to-back WPT titles in 2014, becoming the second person to win consecutive WPT Main Events, but the first to do so in a single season. This is his fifth career WPT final table.
Jake Schindler is another player to watch at the final table today. Currently ranked 27th on the Global Poker Index, Schindler has over $4 million in live tournament earnings. Surprisingly, even with all those winnings, he has never won what might be considered a “major” tournament. He has won a couple significant High Roller Events, though, including the $25,000 High Roller at the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure for $1.2 million and the $100,000 Super High Roller at the 2014 Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open for $570,000. This is his first official final table on the World Poker Tour, though he did finish eighth in last season’s WPT World Championship.
And then there is the shortest stack of the group today, Mina Greco. The Texan barely earned any money in live poker tournaments, but she has the chance to become the first woman in history to win an open World Poker Tour event. It will take some work, as she is nearly 9 million chips behind Hwang, but this is poker and almost nothing is out of the question.
The WPT Choctaw final table will begin at 4:00pm Central Time at the Choctaw Casino Resort. By the end of the night, a new champion will be crowned.
2015 World Poker Tour Choctaw Main Event – Final Table Chip Counts
1. Andy Hwang – 10,935,000
2. Darren Elias – 8,130,000
3. Alex Lynskey – 5,925,000
4. Jake Schindler – 5,675,000
5. Jason Brin – 2,390,000
6. Mina Greco – 2,220,000