Scott Baumstein topped a field of 1,366 entries to win the Season 5 WPTDeepStacks Hollywood Main Event on Tuesday at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino. Baumstein earned his first WPTDeepStacks title and $223,238 in first-place prize money, which included a $3,000 WPTDeepStacks Championship prize package. Baumstein now holds career earnings worth $1.836 million, and he can now a count a WPTDeepStacks title among the accolades in his poker career.
“I feel good, I’m just glad it’s over,” Baumstein told WPT.com after the win. “It was a long day, I ran well, and that’s what you have to do to win poker tournaments,” said Baumstein after the win.”
Baumstein jumped out to a big lead and rode it to heads-up play against Lumni Zhuta. Then, he and Zhuta went back and forth and back and forth before Baumstein eventually sealed the deal for the largest live tournament score of his career. In addition to the result being the largest prize Baumstein has won in a live poker tournament, it’s by far the largest field he’s conquered to date.
“It’s pretty cool,” Baumstein added. “I’ve come just short in a couple of similar-style tournaments recently in the past few month. So I took some time off tournaments, and I hadn’t really played any tournaments since the summer. Sometimes the time off just helps I guess.”
Baumstein eliminated all but one of his opponents on the way to victory, and once he pulled away with the chip lead, Baumstein really started to pour on the aggression. Baumstein found his toughest test at the very end of the tournament when his heads-up opponent Lumni Zhuta doubled up five times during a hard-fought final match.
“I was just trying to do my best to play small pots,” Baumstein said of the heads-up match against Zhuta. “He seemed to want to gamble a little bit more, so I made sure to adjust my strategy accordingly. In the end I eventually got some hands to hold, and I won.”
Season 5 WPTDeepStacks Hollywood Main Event Results
1st: Scott Baumstein – $223,238*
2nd: Lumni Zhuta – $155,126
3rd: Matt Zarcadoolas – $100,579
4th: Stephen Smith – $74,549
5th: A.J. Kersall – $56,239
6th: Justin Harvell – $45,398
7th: Ramon Miquel – $37,440
8th: Ness Reilly – $29,587
9th: Michael Aron – $22,025
*First-place prize includes a $3,000 WPTDeepStacks Championship package.
Cards got into the air noon ET for the final table, and despite the sizable blinds and antes, the play was slow to start the day. The ball eventually started rolling and, following a couple of double ups, Michael Aron was eliminated in ninth place an hour into play. Ness Reilly was out next in eighth place a half hour later.
There were a few more doubles after that, including one for Ramon Miquel, but he fell in seventh place a short time later. Then Baumstein started to pull away with the chip lead (17 million) when he busted Justin Harvell in sixth place.
Baumstein kept his momentum rolling when he took out A.J. Kelsall in fifth place, and then he eliminated Stephen Smith in fourth place soon after that to take his chip stack up to 23 million. Baumstein also sent Matt Zarcadoolas to the rail in third place, and that gave him 23.6 million to take into the heads-up final against Lumni Zhuta, who had a stack of 10.55 million.
Zhuta then managed to double up four times in a row to take the chip lead, but Baumstein scored a double up to take control once again. Zhuta doubled once more, but then Baumstein landed a decisive blow when he doubled up a second time to 32.2 million.
On the final hand, Zhuta moved all in preflop for 1.9 million on the button and Baumstein called to cover him. The two players then flipped over their cards to reveal it was Baumstein’s against the of Zhuta. The board ran out to give Baumstein the victory. Zhuta was eliminated in second place, good for $155,126, and that made Baumstein the Season 5 WPTDeepStacks Hollywood champion.
Along with his first WPTDeepStacks title, Baumstein earned a payday of $223,238, including a $3,000 WPTDeepStacks Championship prize package, the newly redesigned WPTDeepStacks trophy, and a Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino guitar pick trophy.
That concludes our coverage from the WPTDeepStacks Hollywood Main Event. A special thank you goes out to Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino for hosting another great stop on the tour.
Jacksonville Up Next for WPTDeepStacks in North America
The second stop for Season 5 on the WPTDeepStacks schedule in North America will take poker’s premier mid-major tournament circuit just a few hours north and back to besbet Jacksonville. The event is WPTDeepStacks Jacksonville, and the $1,100 Main Event runs March 9-12. The WPTDeepStacks Jacksonville Main Event features a $300,000 guaranteed prize pool, and the WPTDeepStacks coverage team will be on site to provide live updates, chip counts, photos, videos, and more.
Stay tuned to WPTDeepStacks.com and WPT.com for more.