Raymond Papperman won the series-opening WSOP event at Harrah’s Resort last Saturday in Atlantic City. The 59-year-old Pennington, N.J., resident broke through in a $365 No-Limit Hold’em tournament to earn $25,282, a Circuit gold ring and 50 points toward the Casino Championship.
Papperman, a practicing lawyer, described himself as “no pro” and says he’s just a weekend player.
“I think I played well, but a little bit of luck here and there was helpful,” he admitted. “It’s the most fun I’ve had playing poker in a while.”
Papperman bested an in-the-money field that included East Coast grinder Jamie Kerstetter (43rd). Additionally, he outlasted the fan favorite Asher Conniff at the final table. Conniff, a Brooklyn resident, came to the finale with the chip lead, but hit some speed bumps and exited fifth.
In the end, it was Papperman who came out on top and donned gold.
“It’s about the ring, baby,” Papperman said. “I’m happy to get one. I’ve played in a couple of Circuit events and have never gotten a ring. (It’s) pretty special, but $25,000 is nothing to sneeze at either.”
Harrah’s Resort was one of the first properties to host a Circuit event almost 10 years ago, but players at the 2013/2014 series have encountered a decidedly different experience than in the past. The event has come full circle, now being the first to run a series in partnership with WSOP.com, the WSOP’s online real-money gaming client.
Less than two weeks ago, online gaming was approved in New Jersey and Caesars Interactive Entertainment launched WSOP.com on the East Coast. The player feedback has been tremendous and WSOP.com is making its presence known at the Harrah’s Resort Circuit.
Event 1 was the first of 12 gold ring events on the WSOP Circuit schedule at Harrah’s Resort. The $365 No-Limit Hold’em tournament attracted 383 players generating a $114,900 prize pool. The top 45 players were paid.
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