BetMGM Officials Pleased With Las Vegas Championship Event, Joey Weissman Scores Title in Inaugural Tournament

June 28, 2022
BetMGM Officials Pleased With Las Vegas Championship Event, Joey Weissman Scores Title in Inaugural Tournament

After several weeks of promotion and online qualifiers, the BetMGM Poker Championship wrapped up on Sunday from the PokerGO Studio at Aria in Las Vegas.

The tournament saw Joey Weissman bring the chip lead into the final table. The New Yorker then continued that run to take the title with a score of $224,236.

“It feels good to win any event because first place is hard, especially in an event of this caliber, as well as it’s been run and with the difficulty of opponents,” he said. “I loved winning at the PokerGO Studio and couldn’t be any happier.”

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Weissman to the BetMGM winner’s circle

No stranger to poker fans, Weissman now has $4.3 million in live tournament winnings. His poker record stretches back to 2011 and includes big finishes on the PokerGO Tour, World Series of Poker, and other events.

The biggest win came in 2012 when he won a WSOP bracelet for $694,609. With the BetMGM championship, Weissman adds another nice six-figure score. What does he plan to do with the winnings?

“Nothing too glamorous,” he says. “It will go toward more tournaments and a lot of food, because my fiancée and I love to travel. And a bunch is going to some investors on StakeKings.”

A look at the final table of the BetMGM Poker Championship. (photo courtesy BetMGM)

BetMGM Championship beats $1M guarantee

The BetMGM Poker Championship brought something players haven’t seen in a while, a major online poker operator cross-promoting a big live event. The network sent qualifiers from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Michigan, and Ontario to the tournament.

Players won a complete tournament and hotel package that included $25,000 freeroll for all online qualifiers.  The $3,500 championship came with a $1 million guarantee and the event topped that by almost $100,000 with a total of 343 entries.

The company is promising even more events with online qualifying opportunities in the coming months.

“I think this Aria event is just the beginning and this is kind of what players can expect from BetMGM and our live poker events where you’re playing at the premier poker destinations in the country and run by great staff,” BetMGM ambassador and four-time World Poker Tour champion Darren Elias said. “We’re playing eighth-handed on day two, which players like. They’re playing the final table in the PokerGO Studio with Aria staff and dealers, which is the same environment as they play the Super High Roller Bowl. That’s a top-tier experience.

“So I think we’re going to create more of these events at other MGM properties across the country and be looking for those events similar to this coming up at the end of this year and next year where we’re going to be sending online qualifiers from our eligible states and creating events like this one.”

Online players score big

Elias said there was a buzz in the room with so many qualifiers and he enjoyed meeting many of them. Of the 68 online qualifiers, a few made the trip count even more.

Benji Felson of Newark, New Jersey, made a final table appearance, finishing fifth for $51,587. That came after winning a $500 online satellite. Six other BetMGM online qualifiers from New Jersey, Michigan, and Pennsylvania cashed in the event.

Germany’s Paul Hoefer entered the final table as the short stack, but was able to work his way to runner-up for $159,152. One wild hand between Weissman and Michael Wang stood out on the PokerGO stream. Wang was all in with pocket Queens, hitting the Q♦ on the river for a full house.

However, Weissman completed a royal flush with the same card and Wang hit the rail in brutal fashion.

2022 BetMGM Poker Championship results

  1. Joey Weissman (New York) – $224,236
  2. Paul Hoefler (Germany) – $159,152
  3. Noel Rodriguez (California) – $104,272
  4. Michael Wang (New Jersey) – $65,856
  5. Benji Ferguson (New Jersey) – $51,587
  6. Joe Kuether (Wisconsin) – $41,709

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