Rafael Reis Borgata Spring Poker Open winner

Rafael Reis: 2018 Borgata Spring Poker Open Champion

Brazilian-born poker pro (and Upswing Poker member) Rafael Reis, more simply known as Rafa Reis, has been quite a busy man. After nearly a decade of playing in small-stakes tournaments, Reis has entered the big time.

Reis recently emerged victorious in the $600 (No-Limit Hold’Em) NLH Borgata Spring Poker Open, besting a huge field of 2,370 entries. His first prize of $216,010 was the lion’s share of the $1.2-million prize pool and became Reis’ best ever live cash.

Action at the Borgata Spring Poker Open

When the field was whittled down to 22 players on Day 2 and Reis had only 13 big blinds left, he was still confident he would win. By the end of the day, there were 18 players remaining, and Reis was 11th in chip count.

Rafael Reis Borgata SPO Day 2 Chips

End of day 2!

Day 3 was when Reis’ momentum shifted, and he activated warp speed, never looking back. He entered the final table in second place behind Joe Liberta, and once Reis took the chip lead, he was unstoppable.

In addition to Liberta (who took 9th place), Reis outlasted such notable players as Daniel Buzgon, Anthony Tonzelli, Tim Conrow, Ted Forrest, Joe Palma, Asher Conniff, and John Myung.

By the time Reis faced Tonzelli heads up, Reis had over 120 big blinds and a 7:1 lead over his opponent. In the final hand of the tournament, Tonzelli called with K7 to Reis’ button shove with Q6. When Reis turned a queen, Tonzelli’s fate was sealed, and he had to settle for runner-up. Nonetheless, Tonzelli’s $140,279 was still pretty nifty.

Reis dedicated his huge win to his father.

Rafael Reis: Other tournament success

In addition to this tournament, Reis has had much additional success over the past few years.

Reis’ previous largest cash was the $155,642 he won in the November 2016 Rock N Roll Poker Open at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida.

In 2014, Reis won the Seminole Hard Rock’s Rock N Roll Poker Open and a respectable $91,416. Earlier that year, he took first place in two Aria Classic/PartyPoker WPT 500 for a combined $8,389 in prize winnings.

In June 2016, within one week, Reis emerged victorious in the Venetian’s $400 NLH Deep Stack Extravaganza III Bounty, walking away with $8,774, as well as winning nearly $10,000 in the Aria’s $240 NLH Daily Tournament.

More recently, Reis parlayed $240 into $5,209 at the 9 June Aria Poker Classic and, again, turned $400 into nearly $8,000 at the same event on 16 July 2017.

Rafael Reis now boasts live poker winnings in excess of $840,000, and this figure will undoubtedly continue to rise. Congrats Rafa!

Until next time.

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About the Author
Natalie Faulk

Natalie Faulk

Natalie Faulk is a Las Vegas-based freelance writer/blogger and the author of several books. She is an avid low-stakes (for now) poker player and huge Vegas Golden Knights fan.

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