In a truly epic finale worthy of the Mix-Max skill-testing format, "JimmiesBoss" aka Nathan Manuel has emerged the champion of Event 4 over MJ Gonzales!
Here are the RIU Pork Chop details:
The bronze medal match was skipped as Chip "tzutzanu" Tutu and Adam "happyatom" Johnson chopped up third and fourth, meaning both players took home a nice $2,070 chunk of change for their trouble.
The top of the fight card, MJ Gonzales and Nathan "JimmiesBoss" Manuel, decided to play for the trophy, $500, and the Main Event seat, and chop the rest of the prize pool. So second place has guaranteed themselves a cool $4,500.
On to the action! 97 players entered today's Mix-Max RIU championship, only two remain...
Heads-up play began as a near dead-even heat, both players sitting on 730,000 and change in Level 17 (8,000/16,000 with 2,000 antes), meaning both players had right around 46 big blinds.
JimmiesBoss kept up the pressure he used to such a great advantage in his match with happyatom to get out to an early lead, then took down a big 250,000 chip pot thanks to his [6d4h] becoming part of a joint against MJ's two pair. At that point, Manuel took a 2-to-1 chip advantage.
But Gonzales would not be deterred. The Bay Area pro came back with a vengeance, doubling his 497,000 with [6s7d] over Manuels [8s7h]. The money went in on the flop of [6d9h2d], straight draw versus pair, but the runout [Kd] then [4d] actually made a flush for Gonzales. And with that JimmiesBoss went from the penthouse to nearly out the door, down to his last 430,000.
Another big chunk came out of JimmiesBoss' stack thanks to a pretty darn nice river call with fourth pair on [AhJh9dTs4s], as MJ called bets on the flop and river with [Kx9x] to take another big chunk of Manuel's chip stack to drop him down into the 284,000 range. Things looked dire...
...But the Run it Up Warrior ran that back up thanks to his [Qh7s] coming through in the clutch. His all-in preflop bet from the button was quickly called by MJ's [Ah9h], but the fates were with Manuel. [5cKh7s] was a good start, but turn [Qd] was even better, negating any effect a river could do. A [3s] was just such a banana, and play continued.
That was the just the boost JimmiesBoss needed, as he got back to his aggressive pressure-applying ways. MJ couldn't find the right spot to call Manuel on his shenanigans, and after a few dozen hands JimmiesBoss retook a 2-to-1 chiplead.
Another big hand gave JimmiesBoss even more of MJ's chips. A river straight, with [8s6d] on [JdTc7h6c9h], gave Manuel nearly 50% of Gonzales' remaining stack and knocked him back down to only 475,000.
This epic heads-up match is one befitting the Mix-Max format's prestige!
Finally, two hours later on Level 21, with blinds of 20,000/40,000 and antes of 5,000, with only 2 minutes left in late-registration for the 8pm Triple Stud, the final hand occurred.
AJ Gonzales shoved his final 400,000 and change preflop on the button, and Manuel called.
The board ran out clean [Qh4d2h6h2s], and after a truly fabulous performance from both of our finalists Nathan "JimmiesBoss" Manuel is our Mix-Max champion!
Congratulations to all of our competitors, our runner-up MJ Gonzales ($4,500), and our Mix-Max champion Nathan Manuel ($5,000 + Last Warrior Standing Main Event seat + RIU Reno Trophy)!