While Tom Dwan mostly sticks to high stakes cash games in Asia, he recently played in a HK$500,000 Super High Roller tournament. This event was part of the 2017 Macau Billionaire Poker Spring Challenge, held at the Babylon Casino in Macau.
Despite the buy-in being rich at US$64,400, the Super High Roller attracted 12 players, including Philipp “philbort” Gruissem, Dwan, and Mikita Badziakouski, who won the event.
Badziakouski faced Dwan heads up to determine the champion. A short-stacked Dwan made an aggressive shove with Kh-3s, and Badziakouski called with Ac-Kc. The board was dealt Qd-Ts-Ad-4d-2s, which further cemented Badziakouski’s A-K combo as the best hand.
The Belorussian scooped US$420,000 for winning the tournament, while Dwan settled for a US$275,000 payout. Badziakousiki, who plays high-stakes online poker under the screen name “fish2013,” won his second-career live tournament. His first victory came in the $50,000 Shot Clock tournament at the 2017 Aussie Millions. He was also the runner-up in the 2016 Monte Carlo €100k One Drop Extravaganza, earning €501,800.
Back to Dwan, he hasn’t cashed in a live event since February 2014, when he took sixth in the Aussie Millions A$250k Challenge. This earned him A$500k and brought his live winnings to $2.66 million.
But since then, the New Jersey native has been very quiet on both the tournament and online poker scene.
Dwan lost his sponsorship with Full Tilt Poker in 2014, and is normally only seen in Macau and other Asian cash-game hubs.
Dwan was once one of the greatest online poker players of all time and served as a hero to aspiring players in the late 2000s. But he’s since faded away from the public eye – especially with the loss of his FTP sponsorship – and now stays under the radar. That’s what makes the 2017 Macau Billionaire Poker appearance so rare.