The Playground 200 was the marquee event of the February Power Weekend, featuring a $100,000 guaranteed prize pool. Players were allowed unlimited re-entries during the first six levels of each of the five Day 1 starting flights, and in the end, the event attracted a total of 697 entries, allowing the prize pool to grow to $132,218. The top 88 finishers were in the money, with a min-cash in 88th paying out $350, and the top prize paying $24,500 plus the coveted Power Weekend Champion’s ring!
Day 2 saw 152 players return to play through ten 40-minute levels and when the day came to an end, Jean-Pascal Gauthier lead 23 qualifiers into Day 3. Each player had now secured a $940 payday although all eyes were on the top prize.
On Day 3 the short stacks made moves from the first very hand of play and eliminations started to happen left and right. It took three hours for the nine-handed final table to be formed, and then not very long for the first elimination to take place. As play became six-handed, the action slowed down as all of the players were quite aware of the ICM considerations with the large pay jumps from each subsequent bustout.
Once play went three-handed an ICM deal was reached and it was Jean-Pascal Gauthier who was in the driver’s seat, holding close to 70% of the chips in play. After the deal was made, Adam Strulovitch was the first to leave the table, taking home $14,064 for his efforts. When play went heads-up between Gauthier and Alexandre Patry, Gauthier now had over 80% of the chips but Patry did not give up. He tried his best until finally the last hand came in to play. Patry moved all in with and was called by Gauthier holding . Gauthier made a pair on the flop, and Patry made a higher pair on the turn, but the river gave Gauthier trip-eights and the Playground 200 crowned a champion, Jean-Pascal Gauthier.
Playground 200 Champion: Jean-Pascal Gauthier, $23,810
Second Place: Alexandre Patry, $14,904
Last hand of play: