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Monday, June 3, 2013
Mike Gorodinsky wins split Event 5

By Andrew Feldman
ESPN.com

Last week during our annual fantasy poker draft, Daniel Negreanu selected Mike Gorodinsky with his third-round pick. Nobody batted an eye on the selection, as Gorodinsky has a ton of success in mixed game events and, as a result, is a strong candidate to earn plenty of fantasy points. What was debated was the round he was selected, as Negreanu's could've waited for a future pick. Well, that debate is officially over. Gorodinsky defeated the field of 374 in the split Omaha high-low/seven-card stud-8 event at the 2013 WSOP, capturing his first bracelet and $216,988. He officially had at least third-round value.

Mike Gorodinsky
Mike Gorodinsky overcame an 8:1 heads-up deficit to win Event 5.

"I'm not going to say these are my best games, but I play them well enough," said Gorodinsky to the WSOP after his victory. "What can I say? This feels great. It's awesome."

Gorodinsky's mixed game resume is quite impressive. The 27-year-old won the eight-game event at PCA twice (2010 and 2012), finished sixth in the 10-game mixed event at the WSOP in 2012 and owns numerous other cashes in non-hold 'em events. While this was only a two-game rotation, Gorodinsky had plenty of experience and was able to utilize it to his advantage.

Given the caliber of talent at the final table, it was clear Gorodinsky wouldn't coast to victory. Owais Ahmed, the champion of this event in 2011, was the chip leader with eight remaining, but at this final table, no lead was safe. The early eliminations came quickly as Kristopher Tong knocked out Mack Lee in seventh shortly after Julie Schneider's exit in eighth. Matthew Ashton took out George Danzer in sixth, but gave away most of those chips to Gorodinsky a few hands later.

The pots began to swell and it appeared that every stud-8 hand that reached fifth street was tournament changing for its winner. Gorodinsky went from holding a huge lead, to sitting in middle of the pack during one of the rotations. After George Fotiadis fell in fifth, Tong, who had only a few bets left to his name about an hour before, was the chip leader. Ahmed's goal of repeating as champion ended with a fourth-place finish, and Tong owned the majority of the chips in play with three players left.

Tong knocked out Ashton and dominated Gorodinsky early in heads-up play to surge to an 8-to-1 edge. Gorodinsky remained focused and his excellent reads appeared to frustrate Tong. In under 50 minutes from when Tong held his lead, Gorodinsky pulled away to a 12-to-1 lead of his own and finished the job in stud-8, hitting a straight to top Tong's pair on the final hand.

"I had a pretty good read on how my opponent was playing, so I just needed some momentum to swing my way," said Gorodinsky.

Other notable finishers include Daniel Negreanu (12th), Mike Matusow (14th), David "Bakes" Baker (19th) and 2012 October Niner Jeremy Ausmus (21st).

Below are the complete results of Event 5 at the 2013 World Series of Poker:

Event 5: Omaha/Seven-card stud high-low split eight-or-better
Buy-in: $2,500
Entries: 374
Prize pool: $850,850
Players in the money: 40

1. Mike Gorodinsky ($216,988)
2. Kristopher Tong ($134,017)
3. Matthew Ashton ($86,437)
4. Owais Ahmed ($62,631)
5. George Fotiadis ($46,048)
6. George Danzer ($34,348)
7. Mack Lee ($25,993)
8. Julie Schneider ($19,952)
9. Dustin Leary ($15,536)
10. Roman Verenko ($15,536)
11. Alexander Lakhov ($12,269)
12. Daniel Negreanu ($12,269)
13. Randall Pace ($9,818)
14. Mike Matusow ($9,818)
15. Andrew Kelsall ($7,963)
16. Ralph Perry ($7,963)
17. David Levi ($6,551)
18. James Vanalstyne ($6,551)
19. David Baker ($6,551)
20. Zimnan Ziyard ($6,551)
21. Jeremy Ausmus ($6,551)
22. Jose-Luis Velador ($6,551)
23. Chris Bjorin ($6,551)
24. Ron Fast ($6,551)
25. Kevin MacPhee ($5,496)
26. Doug Saab ($5,496)
27. Tom Schneider ($5,496)
28. Amnon Filippi ($5,496)
29. Matt Glantz ($5,496)
30. Artem Litvinov ($5,496)
31. Sergey Pevzner ($5,496)
32. Max Pescatori ($5,496)
33. Allyn Jaffrey Shulman ($4,611)
34. Ronald Winkelvoss ($4,611)
35. Blair Rodman ($4,611)
36. Scott Stanko ($4,611)
37. Gregory Jamison ($4,611)
38. Danny Scott ($4,611)
39. Jason Berilgen ($4,611)
40. Robert Campbell ($4,611)