Playing poker heads up is never an easy task but when you find yourself going head to head with a loyal friend of yours that you have spent years playing poker with, you can completely understand why the heads up section of the PokerStars North American Poker Tour LA Bounty Shootout tournament lasted a huge 3 hours.
Friends Eric Baldwin and Justin Young were able to outlast their competitors as they raced to do battle with each other for the chance to have the ultimate bragging rights, and the action unfolded over 180 minutes of play.
Baldwin outlasted his friend to take the first place prize money of $134,280 while Young had to settle for $26,000 in winnings, including the $6,000 that he won by eliminating 6 players on his way to the final section of the tournament, sending Sam Stein, Scott Clements, Scott Montgomery, Michael Mizrachi, Clint Coffee and third place finisher David Williams on his progression through the tournament.
The tournament was never going to be an easy one to compete in, with each and every playing having a bounty reward placed onto their head for any player to claim should they knock them out, usually leading to a fast paced tournament.
The tournament also played host to a number of well known players and could have meant more to a couple of the hopefuls as they looked to get their hands on the 165 Player of the Year (POY) Points in order to try to overtake Sorel Mizzi in the BLUFF Player of the Year race standings.
Although the final table included Michael Mizrachi and Tom Marchese at the start of the action, neither player were able to get their hands on the 165 POY Points which were up for grabs as they crashed out of the tournament in 8th and 5th place.
The points which were won by tournament winner Baldwin will be of great help to his charge to get to the top of the rankings, moving him into the top 10 players in the race to the top after narrowly missing out on last years race and coming second place, a prize which is not recognised.
A look at the final standings of the PokerStars North American Poker Tour LA $5k Bounty Shootout tournament show this, prize money includes the bounty payments which each player earned during their play:
1st: Eric Baldwin – $157,280
2nd: Justin Young -$26,000
3rd: David Williams – $24,000
4th: Mohsin Charania – $25,000
5th: Tom Marchese -$24,000
6th: Clint Coffee – $23,000
7th: Pat Pezzin – $22,000
8th: Michael Mizrachi – $24,000
9th: Kevin MacPhee – $23,000