Brian Altman Wins WPT Tampa for Third Career World Poker Tour Title

brian altman wpt tampa
Brian Altman collected his third career World Poker Tour title after winning WPT Tampa on Tuesday. (WPT Photo)

When the six-handed final table of the inaugural World Poker Tour Tampa stop began on Tuesday afternoon at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tampa, Florida, Brian Altman held almost three times as many chips as his closest competitor and more than the rest of the table combined.

The reigning WPT Player of the Year and two-time WPT Champions Club member needed just three hours to collect the rest of the chips and etch his name on the Mike Sexton Champions Cup for the third time. Altman is now one of five players with three WPT wins to their credit and sits just one victory behind the all-time leader, Darren Elias, who has four.

The final six players battled for an hour before the first player was sent packing. From UTG, Will Berry moved all in for 2,400,000 with AcTh and Jonathan Jaffe called from the big blind with AhJh. The KhQd7s flop gave both players Broadway draws but Jaffe maintained his lead. Berry could only watch as the 6c turn and 4c river completed the board and failed to save him from a sixth place finish.

Three hands later the table went from five players to four. John Haas opened the action by moving all in from the cutoff for 2,500,000 with AsJd and Gabriel Abusada opted to defend his small blind with KdTd. The QsJd3c flop gave Haas second pair but left Abusada with an open-ended straight draw. The 5d turn gave Abusada even more out as he picked up a flush draw. The river was the 2d to give Abusada a flush and eliminate Haas in fifth.

Another three hands passed and another player was heading to get his payout. Action folded to Jaffe in the small blind and he threw in an additional 100,000 to call with 6c6d. Altman raised to 650,000 from the big blind with 8c8s. Jaffe responded by moving all in for 4,400,000 and Altman called. The Qs3c2s flop changed nothing and neither did the Ks turn or 2h river and Jaffe was out in fourth.

Over the next hour of play, Zach Smiley simply couldn’t get any momentum going and eventually found himself running headlong into a confrontation with Altman. Down to seven big blinds, Smiley shoved from the small blind with Qd3d and Altman snap-called from the big with AdQh. The board ran out 9c6c2cTs2s to send Smiley, who won WPT Maryland Live! in 2016, to the cashier cage to collect a third place payout.

Altman began heads-up play holding 77% of the chips in play. The closest Abusada could get was closing the gap to a 3-2 advantage for Altman. It took a little over an hour and 38 hands of play for Altman to close things out. Abusada moved all in for 18,525,000 with 6c6s only to have Altman call behind with JcJd. The Kd9h7s flop offered little help to Abusada. He picked up a the worst side of a straight draw on the Ts turn and was officially eliminated as the runner-up when the 5c completed the board.

Altman’s two previous wins came also came in Florida. In 2015, he beat Mark Dube heads up to win the Lucky Hearts Poker Open at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel in Hollywood. He won the 2020 version of the same event earlier this year by topping an 843-entry field. He won WPT Player of the Year last year thanks to his Lucky Hearts win and third place finishes at WPT Maryland Live! and the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open. He also finished 10th at the Legends of Poker. Of his 30 WPT cashes, seven are final tables and three are wins.

World Poker Tour Tampa Final Table Payouts

  1. Brian Altman – $613,225
  2. Gabriel Abusada – $408,825
  3. Zach Smiley – $302,200
  4. Jonathan Jaffe – $225,675
  5. John Haas – $170,275
  6. Will Berry – $129,825

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