WCOOP 2016: Argentina's Juan Pablo "Jpgossn" Gossn wins 2016 WCOOP Kickoff for $179,118.94

Leading up to WCOOP-01: $109 NL Hold'em [WCOOP Kickoff], a series of phases brought the total field up to 16,416 entries. Then, on Day 1 of the tournament, the field was whittled down from 1,691 to the final 27, each of who were guaranteed $3,216.87. On Day 2, those players returned to play down to a winner, and when the last card came down it was 24-year-old Argentinean Juan Pablo "Jpgossn" Gossn who stood alone.

Gossn, who struck a heads-up deal with "WalmartCNXN," claimed his first WCOOP title and fifth for his home country. The win comes a little more than a year after Gossn topped a field of 914 players to win the PokerStars Sunday Second Chance for $33,123.

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Of the 16,416 total players from all phases, 1,691 got paid including the only two Team PokerStars Pros to cash, George Danzer (1,325th - $321.83) and Grzegorz "DaWarsaw" Mikielewicz (187th - $804.40). Others who cashed were Christian "eisenhower1" Jeppsson (956th - $391.35), Ashton "theASHMAN103" Griffin (192nd - $804.40), Charlie "Epiphany77" Carrel, and Mike "goleafsgoeh" Leah (45th - $2,274.76).

Among those to return to Day 2 but ultimately fall short of the final table were "mt1ps" (27th - $3,216.87), Ole "wizowizo" Schemion (20th - $4,549.20), "arthuzinho" (14th - $6,433.59), and bubble boy "TitoBroz" (10th - $9,098.23).

Here's how things stacked up at the final table:

"josip1313" (Croatia) - 27,011,220
"guibmac" (Brazil) - 26,932,811
"WalmartCNXN" (Canada) - 20,200,289
Juan Pablo "Jpgossn" Gossn (Argentina) - 19,161,864
"RobocopAA" (UK) - 17,440,320
"Legadzo" (UK) - 15,614,232
"Mad_Dog_Er1c" (Canada) - 15,574,135
"smithy kgb" (Australia) - 13,213,994
"EkkoMid" (UK) - 9,011,135

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"Legadzo" Runs Jacks into Kings to Bust Ninth

The first final table elimination came with the blinds at 250,000/500,000/50,000 when "Legadzo" (11,466,232) raised to 1.09 million from the hijack and "guibmac" (13,843,211) three-bet to 3 million from the big blind. "Legadzo" responded by moving all in and "guibmac" snap-called.

"guibmac": K♥K♠
"Legadzo": J♥J♠

"Legadzo" was in a bad spot, and he failed to catch as the board ran out 2♣6♠8♣2♦3♥. "Legadzo" took home $12,866.69 for his ninth-place finish.

"smithy kgb" Has a Kicker Problem

Not long after, with the blinds at 300,000/600,000/60,000, "EkkoMid" (16.614,270) opened for 1.2 million under the gun and a short-stacked "smithy kgb" (2,713,977) moved all in one spot over. "Mad_Dog_Er1c" called from the big blind but ended up folding when "EkkoMid" moved all in over the top.

"EkkoMid": A♣K♠
"smithy kgb": A♠J♣

"smithy kgb" had a kicker problem, and it did not get resolved as the board ran out a lowly 4♥3♠6♥3♥5♥. "smithy kgb" earned $18,196.15 for finishing eighth.

"RobocopAA" Runs Smack Dab into Two Ladies

Eight hands later, "RobocopAA" (3,422,120) moved all in holding the A♦7♦ second to act and action folded to "EkkoMid" (25,952,204), who called from the big blind with the Q♥Q♦. "RobocopAA's" best shot at staying alive was to catch either an ace or diamonds, but he was left wanting as the board ran out an unhelpful J♥9♣3♦6♠K♥. "RobocopAA" was awarded $25,733.06 for his seventh-place finish.

"guibmac" Bluffs It Off

Just three hands after that, "guibmac," who began the final table second in chips, was ousted in sixth place. It happened when "guibmac" (18,304,943) raised to 1.4 million under the gun only to have "EkkoMid" (31,414,324) three-bet to 3.85 million from the cutoff. Action folded back to "guibmac," and he called to see a J♠7♦8♦ flop, which both players checked.

When the 2♠ appeared on the turn, "guibmac" led out for 4.9 million and "EkkoMid" called. "guibmac" then jammed for his last 9,494,943 on the 7♥ river and "EkkoMid" snap-called. "guibmac" showed the A♦Q♣ for a bluff, and "EkkoMid" scored his third elimination in a row with the 7♠6♠ for trips.

"EkkoMid" Makes It Four Eliminations in a Row

With the blinds at 350,000/700,000/70,000, "EkkoMid" (37,349,267) raised to 1.6 million under the gun holding the A♦K♦ and "Mad_Dog_Er1c" (8,202,158) defended his big blind with the T♦6♠. When the flop came down T♠4♠4♦, "Mad_Dog_Er1c" checked and then moved all in for 6,532,158 after "EkkoMid" had bet 1 million.

"EkkoMid" made the call and took the lead when the A♣ spiked on the turn. The A♠ river improved him to a full house, and he sent "Mad_Dog_Er1c" out the door in fifth place for $51,465.63.

Back-to-Back Eliminations Brings About Heads-Up Play

Four-Handed play lasted quite a while, during which time "EkkoMid" (18,730,060) fell to the short stack. With the blinds at 600,000/1,200,000/120,000, "EkkoMid" moved all in from the small blind holding the A♣8♦ and Gossn (60,061,025) called from the big blind with the K♣Q♣. "EkkoMid" was ahead, but the T♣3♥7♣ flop made things interesting by giving Gossn a flush draw.

The Q♠ turn wasn't a club, but it was just as good for Gossn, who pulled ahead with a pair. The T♥ river was no help to "EkkoMid," and he had to settle for fourth place and $72,783.29 in prize money.

One hand later, "josip1313" moved all in for 18,053,832 from the small blind and "WalmartCNXN" (67,075,083) called from the big.

"WalmartCNXN": J♠J♦
"josip1313": A♠J♣

"josip1313's" best shot at surviving was to catch an ace, but that didn't happen as the board ran out 3♦T♥6♣K♣7♠ to send him out the door in third place for $102,930.78.

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A Deal is Struck

Heads-up play began with both players holding right around 82 million in chips, so they opted to strike a deal where they both pockets just over $172,000 and left $7,029 on the table to play for. A short time later, with the blinds at 700,000/1,400,000/140,000, "WalmartCNXN" (79,904,630) raised to 3.15 million holding the Q♦9♦ and Gossn (84,255,370) three-bet to 9.1 million with the A♣A♦.

"WalmartCNXN" called, the flop came down 7♣4♦5♦, and Gossn led out for 13,480,200. "WalmartCNXN" responded by raising to 37,645,058 and then called off his remaining 37,645,058 after Gossn moved all in.

"WalmartCNXN" was looking for another diamond, but it never came as the T♠ blanked on the turn followed by the A♥ on the river.

WCOOP-01: $109 NL Hold'em [WCOOP Kickoff] results
Total Entries: 16,416 (all phases)
Prize pool: $1,641,600
Places paid: 1,619

1.) Juan Pablo "Jpgossn" Gossn (Argentina) - $179,118.94*
2.) "WalmartCNXN" (Canada) - $172,316.41*
3.) "josip1313" (Croatia) - 102,930.78
4.) "EkkoMid" (UK) - $72,783.29
5.) "Mad_Dog_Er1c" (Canada) - $51,465.63
6.) "guibmac" (Brazil) - $36,391.97
7.) "RobocopAA" (UK) - $25,733.06
8.) "smithy kgb" (Australia) - $18,196.15
9.) "Legadzo" (UK) - $12,866.69

*Denotes heads-up deal

The three-week 2016 World Championship of Online Poker is just getting underway. Visit the WCOOP site for a look at the full schedule of remaining events as well as results, the updated Player of the Series leaderboard, and more.

Chad Holloway
@PokerStars in WCOOP