Mark Davis Beats Darren Elias in Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown and Denies Him His Fifth World Poker Tour Title

There has been a one-and-a-half hiatus in the World Poker Tour (WPT) Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown. But the tournament resumed this week at the HyperX Esports Arena at Luxor, Las Vegas. The $3,500 buy-in event had six finalists from an initial field of 2,010 entrants.

Darren Elias, a four-time WPT winner, was the stack leader when the final table action started and was determined to win his fifth title. If the poker pro had won the tournament, he would have two more titles than his closest rivals; Brian Altman, Carlos Mortensen, Eric Afriat, Anthony Zinno, Chino Rheem, and Gus Hansen.

Andrew Barfield, Mark Davis, Michael Laufer, Viet Vo, and Marcos Exterkotter joined Elias in the televised final table. Elias had advanced to the two biggest WPT Main Events ever held. He won $593,140 in the 2021 WPT Main Event after being in the third position.

Davis was second in chips position at the final table. He eventually denied Elias the $1,000,300 prize and title. Yet, the Alabama poker pro had a total of $730,167 in live poker tournament earnings before winning the showdown.

The Hendon Mob states that his previous career-best score was $334,678, and it was when he won the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Circuit Harrah's Cherokee Main Event in February.

The Showdown Final Table Prizes

  1. Mark Davis-$1,000,300
  2. Darren Elias-$660,000
  3. Marcos Exterkotter-$490,000
  4. Viet Vo-$370,000
  5. Andrew Barfield-$280,000
  6. Michael Laufer-$215,000

The Final Table's Action

The final table had 332 big blinds before the action began. But it was fast, and the event's live updates show that Laufer got eliminated after six hands. Davis' ace-nine defeated his pocket threes, thus sending him home.

Barfield had the least chips when the action began and continued playing up to the 34th hand. The player used pocket sevens to get his chips in a preflop. Unfortunately, he lost the flip against a king-queen.

Vo left the table after six hands. He went in with an eight kicker and top pair of aces against Elias. But the latter held ace-seven of diamonds. Vo ran diamonds and offered Elias a flush that ended his run in the fourth position and earned him $370,000.

Exterkotter went all in with a three-bet having ace-four offsuit when Elias called him having pocket sevens. Walking sticks held and led to Exterkotter's elimination in third place, earning him $490,000. Also, it helped Elias take 63.7 million in a heads-up battle against Davis' 37.75 million.

The battle lasted for almost 100 hands as it was a back-and-forth ordeal. Even so, Davis called with king-high and took Elias' bluff. Things changed after five hands.

Davis used the bottom two pair to snap call on the 150th hand as a straight draw clogged the turn. Elias picked a community card and lost the fight to Davis. He won $660,000 and increased his lifetime poker earnings to more than $10.5 million.

Darren Elias' Previous WPT Titles

  1. The $3,500 buy-in 2014 WPT Borgata Poker Open event earned him $843,744
  2. The $3,500 buy-in WPT Caribbean Casino Royale event in which he won $127,680
  3. The CAD$5,000 buy-in 2017 WPT Fallsview Poker Classic event, which he received $335,436
  4. The $10,000 buy-in 2018 WPT Bobby Baldwin Classic event in which he won $387,580


A sports enthusiast, Ryan helps cover sports betting news from around the country, highlighting some of the more interesting events going on in the USA.