Chad Eveslage Wins World Poker Tour Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event

Chad Eveslage Wins World Poker Tour Five Diamond World Poker Classic Main Event

Chad Eveslage has accumulated nearly $7 million in recorded poker tournament earnings, with 200 career cashes spanning back to 2011. While he has been on the circuit for more than a decade now, Eveslage’s breakthrough at the highest levels has been more of a recent development. Since the start of 2021, the Muncie, Indiana native has cashed for more than $5.35 million, with five titles won including a World Series of Poker bracelet and two World Poker Tour main event titles. The second of those WPT wins came this week at Bellagio Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The 2022 WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic $10,400 buy-in no-limit hold’em main event attracted a field of 569 total entries, surpassing the $5 million guarantee by over half of a million dollars. After five days of tournament action, Eveslage emerged victorious with the title and the top prize of $1,042,300.

This was the second-largest payday of Eveslage’s career, behind only the $1.4 million he earned as the champion of the $25,000 no-limit hold’em eight max event at this year’s WSOP.

Eveslage was awarded 2,100 Card Player Player of the Year points for his latest win. This was his second title and sixth final-table finish of the year. With 4,222 total points and more than $2.6 million in year-to-date POY earnings, he now sits in 13th place in the 2022 POY standings, which are sponsored by Global Poker.

He also secured 1,200 PokerGO Tour points for the win. This was his eighth qualifying score for that high-stakes focused race. As a result, he is now among the top ten PGT contenders heading into the final months of competition.

The WPT Five Diamond main event kicked off on Oct. 19. Registration officially closed the following day, and by the time that session was done, the field had been narrowed to just 95 hopefuls. Day 3 saw the money bubble burst, with only the top 72 finishers cashing. Five-time bracelet winner Brian Rast was the last player eliminated outside of the money, with his pocket jacks running into the pocket aces of Eveslage.

Plenty of notables ran deep in this event, including the controversy-embroiled Robbi Jade Lew (49th), three-time bracelet winner Ryan Leng (40th), two-time bracelet winner Pete Chen (26th), all-time money leader Justin Bonomo (18th), Daniel Colpoys (9th), and 2021 WSOP $50,000 event runner-up Ren Lin (8th).

The final day began with just seven remaining and Albert Calderon in the chip lead. Zach Donovan was the first to fall, with his A-Q running into the pocket queens of recent WSOP Online bracelet winner Brian Kim. The pocket pair held up and Donovan was sent packing in seventh place ($166,000).

It took another 86 hands for the next elimination to arrive. David Kim got all-in with a pair of aces and a jack kicker, only to find himself trailing the aces and eights of
four-time WSOP bracelet winner Michael Gathy. Kim found no help from the river, making his sixth-place finish official ($216,000).

Albert Calderon started the final day as the chip leader, but his run ended in fifth place when his pair of aces and a nut flush draw was unable to outrun the aces two pair, aces and queens, of Eveslage with one card coming. Calderon made aces and tens on the end, but it was still second best. He went home with $283,000 for his strong showing in this event. This score saw his lifetime earnings surpass $1.1 million, with all three of his top scores coming in WPT events.

Brian KimA classic preflop race spelled the end of Brian Kim in this event. With a raise from Eveslage and a call from Steve Buckner in front of him, Kim three-bet shoved for 30 big blinds with ADiamond SuitQDiamond Suit. Eveslage called with 10Heart Suit10Club Suit and the board ran out ASpade SuitQHeart Suit10Spade Suit7Diamond Suit7Spade Suit. Kim earned $377,000 for his fourth-place showing. This was the live largest tournament payday of his career, surpassing the $323,100 he earned as the 23rd-place finisher in this year’s WSOP main event. His deep run at Bellagio came just a week after he won his first bracelet by taking down a $5,300 high roller during the WSOP Online festival. That victory saw him pocket $119,000. He now has more than $1 million in recorded earnings to his name.

Michael Gathy slid to the bottom of the leaderboard as three-handed play continued. He ultimately got his last 25 big blinds in with A-J trailing the A-Q of Eveslage. The board brought no help for Gathy and the Belgian was knocked out in third place ($505,000). This was just his third cash in a WPT event. The majority of his live tournament success has come at the WSOP, where he has accumulated four titles and more than $2.7 million of his $4.5 million in career earnings.

Heads-up play began with Eveslage holding 17,875,000 to Buckner’s 10,575,000. The final two battled it out for more than 150 hands. There were several lead changes along the way, with more frequent swings as the stacks got shallower. In the penultimate hand of the tournament, Evelsage shoved for just over 12 big blinds with AClub Suit9Heart Suit and Buckner called with QSpade SuitQDiamond Suit from the big blind. The board ran out 8Club Suit5Spade Suit3Spade Suit4Heart SuitAHeart Suit, giving Eveslage a rivered pair of aces for the win. Buckner had him covered by roughly three big blinds, which meant that Eveslage took more than an 8:1 lead after the hand.

The next hand saw Buckner shove with 9Club Suit7Spade Suit from the button. Eveslage called with 7Heart Suit5Diamond Suit . The board brought 10Spade Suit10Diamond Suit5Club SuitKHeart SuitJSpade Suit, giving Eveslage tens and fives to lock up the pot and the title.

Buckner earned $690,000 as the runner-up finisher. This was the second time that he finished second in a WPT main event this season, having also been the runner-up at WPT Choctaw. He now has more than $1.5 million in career earnings, with more than $1 million of that coming from his two big scores on the WPT this year. As a result of his recent success, he now sits in first place in the WPT Player of the Year race.

Here is a look at the payouts and rankings points awarded at the final table:

Place Player Earnings POY Points PGT Points
1 Chad Eveslage $1,042,300 2,100 1,200
2 Steven Buckner $690,000 1,750 690
3 Michael Gathy $505,000 1,400 505
4 Brian Kim $377,000 1,050 377
5 Albert Calderon $283,000 875 283
6 David Kim $216,000 700 216
7 Zachary Donovan $166,000 525 166
8 Ren Lin $129,000 350 129
9 Daniel Colpoys $101,000 175 101

Photo credits: Joe Giron / World Poker Tour.