While many of live tournament poker’s top players battle it out against each other in super high roller events Ari Engel has taken a different approach, instead opting to try to dominate the smaller stakes events that are now ominpresent around the country and the globe. Engel has established himself as the “endboss of the circuit” in recent years, putting up incredibly consistent results despite massive fields. His latest win is a perfect example of his recent approach. Engel topped a field of 6,087 entries in the $160 Mega Millions XVIII Quantum event, winning $315,142. This event featured a $1 million guaranteed prize pool, which was more than doubled as a result of the overwhelming turnout. The event ran from March 16 – 29, with $160 and $550 buy-in starting flights and a $4,300 direct buy-in for day 2.
This was Engel’s third largest live tournament score, behind only his win in the 2016 Aussie Millions main event and his fifth place finish in a €10,300 high roller at the EPT Barcelona that same year. As a result of this latest win Engel has icnreased his lifetime live earnings to $5,726,903.
Engel entered the final table of this event in second chip position. He overtook the lead as play got shothanded, and furthered his advantage when his AHeart SuitKClub Suit bested 2016 World Poker Tour Legends of Poker main event champion Pat Lyons’ ASpade Suit10Heart Suit. Lyons was eliminated in fourth place, taking home $90,080.
In the end Engel got heads-up against Min Zhang. He flopped trips with the AClub Suit5Club Suit on a 5Spade Suit5Diamond Suit3Heart Suit9Diamond Suit10Heart Suit runout and Zhang got the last of her chips in with pocket queens. Engel made the call to secure the pot and the title, sending Zhang to the rail with $178,565.
Here is a look at the payouts awarded at the final table: