Brooks Surprises And Surpasses All At WPT LA Poker Classic Main Event

A large section of the crowd may have been rooting for Carlos Mortensen when the final table of the L.A. Poker Classic’s Main Event finally commenced yesterday, and there’s no denying that Mortensen did them proud, but ultimately last night belonged to another man. That man – the eventual victor of one of poker’s most well-respected tournaments – was none other than relative newcomer (on the live poker scene, anyway) Gregory Brooks. Since poker loves a underdog just as much as any other sport, we’re going to give you a bit of a glimpse into the story behind this weekend’s biggest winner.

First and foremost, while young Gregory Brooks may be fresh to the live poker scene, online poker followers may recognize his poker room persona of “MyNameIzGreg.” While Brooks has predominately been an online player, he admitted when he qualified for the final table last night that he’s played his fair share of live ring games. Plus his official introduction to live poker actually came at even larger tournaments – the Caribbean Adventure, Borgata Open and World Series of Poker – and he cashed at all of them.

Still, Brooks admitted that he’d been feeling a little disillusioned with the game lately, and that he’d originally only come to Los Angeles this week for a personal vacation. Thanks to Brooks, he’s got some very supportive friends. With a little wheedling, Brooks agreed to enter the Main Event. The rest, as they say, is now history.

No one can say that Brooks had an easy time of it. Last night’s final table was a tough one, and Brooks was far from a favorite for the win, not just because of his sparse live tournament track record but because his stack had him sitting at the back half of the pack with less than half the chips of both Carlos Mortensen and Vivek Rajkumar. How then did Brooks manage to pull off such an esteemed win?

For one, he made quick work of the chip gap by doubling up off of Rajkumar only three hands into the final table action. Brooks then systematically used his extra chips to pick away at his lesser opponents. Mortensen, to his credit, sent the first player (Darryll Fish) to the rail. That would be Mortensen’s only kill, though, and after Rajkumar rebuilt his stack by eliminating the next two players (Steve Gross and Amir Lehavot), Mortensen became the new weakest link. Brooks was quick to finish him off.

That left only Rajkumar in Brooks’ way, and the Indian ace was far shorter stacked. With time and patience Brooks broke him too, earning himself his first WPT title and an impressive $908,730 payout.

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