Level 31 Blinds: 80k / 160k / 20k ante
Saimir Collaku - 1st Place
The 2017 Sands Bethlehem DeepStack Extravaganza Main Event is in the books with Saimir Collaku (Hoboken, NJ) your 1st Place Champion earning $55,000.
Saimir Collaku (1st Place), Johnathan Kramer (2nd Place), Ryan Miquel (3rd Place), and Jack Hackbart (4th Place) chopped the remaining prize-pool at the break right before the blinds were about to run at 80k / 160k / 20k.
Saimir enjoyed the chip lead for all of Day-3 and well into the night during Day-2. He played only 1 bullet in Saturday's Day-1, Flight 1D and found himself as short as 100,000 mid way through Sunday's Day-2.
The hand that sprung Saimir forward when he had 200,000 came as the clock ticked down for the Day-2 dinner break. A player at the table insisted they still had to play a hand. Saimir took him on heads up with A-K vs. A-Q and doubled up to 400,000.
Saimir hasn't played a major poker tournament for three years and this is his first ever Sands DeepStack tournament. $55,000 is by far his biggest tournament cash ever.
He thanks his Mom, his Dad, his sister Lediana, and his nephew Alex for their support.
Saimir outlasted 712 DeepStackers and in the end earned all 28,480,000 chips in play.
The total prize pool for this 3-Day Event was an impressive $348,880 with 72 players making the cash.
But the big winner once again was Saimir Collaku who dominated the final table and for his mad poker skills and flawless table image, brings home $55,000.
This concludes coverage of the 2017 Sands Bethlehem DeepStack Extravaganza series. Thanks to the Sands poker room staff, dealers, and floor for presenting another well-run, player friendly series with awesome structures and monster payouts. See you next time!