Slaght bests 113 players in Event 6 of the 10-tournament series, earns $10,505 and a Main Event seat.
Hammond, Ind. (March 12, 2015) — William Slaght, Jr.’s current life isn’t what it was pre-Black Friday. The former Bluff Online Player of the Year, Slaght’s life was better than “good” and more closely resembled “the dream” during online poker’s heyday. Prior to April 15, 2011, Slaght was playing 20 to 24 tables online regularly, granting interviews to poker magazines, working with a training site and even had a sponsorship deal in the works. In his own words, he made way more money then than he does now.
“…then just wham, they took it all,” Slaght recalled Wednesday evening at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Ind. following his victory and $10,505 score in Event 6 of the Chicago Poker Classic.
When Black Friday hit, his life took a hit. An online professional freshly married and looking to start a family with his new wife was all the sudden out of a job. Had he been single, he may have fled the country for the greener pastures of Mexico or Canada, but that wasn’t an option with the love his life in the States.
“[Leaving the country] wasn’t an option for me, so I’d go out of town a couple times a week,” Slaght remembered. “It’s tough when I have to drive three or four hours to find a game that’s worth the drive and worth the time. Then, it doesn’t always go as planned.”
He recalled returning home and having to admit to his wife he’d lost thousands of dollars. The pastures that were once green had dried up and it was time to find something else to support not only him, but his wife and family he hoped to have in the coming years.
“I started a different career,” he said of the post-Black Friday transition. “I took a job as a fleet manager with a trucking company about eight months ago and it’s been going fantastic. I’ve probably never been happier in my life, really. I can’t wait to get home and have a short celebration with my family for the next couple days, then get back up here for the Main and hopefully really do something special.”
A former professional, some are quick to assume Slaght, who won the CPC’s $400 Omaha 8/stud 8 tournament, would re-find his calling after coming upon the poker winner’s circle again. That couldn’t be further from the case.
“Never say never, but I will personally guarantee I will never play poker for a living again,” he said. “I enjoy [poker] way more now, and you can just tell when I’m playing. At the end, it’s a game. I see a lot of poker professionals out there that are just not happy people. It’s such a fun game when you treat it as such. Once it starts becoming a job, it’s not nearly as enjoyable.”
One thing is for sure – Slaght was all smiles Wednesday night in Hammond. Shortly after Black Friday he and his wife had their first daughter, Averie. Just over a year later, their second, Everlie, came along. With his three girls at home and a newer, more steady, job becoming more familiar by the day, Slaght admits he couldn’t ask for anything more.
“I actually love it,” he said of working a traditional job. “The structured nature of it where my wife and I work basically the same hours. It’s been great for our family – steadier income. My two daughters and my wife [are the reason I’m so happy]. I can’t wait to get home and see them. I’ll be back to play the Main Event this weekend. My work would be alright if I took the rest of the week off, but I’ll go back to work for a couple days.”
The chances a pre-April 15, 2011 Slaght would go home to work a traditional job if he didn’t have to? We’re guessing they’re slim. But this is a new Slaught. He loves poker again, but more than that he loves his family and he loves the life he has with them. The $10,505 he scored in Hammond was nice, but it took a back seat to bigger things. What’s more, he made it known the $2,000 Main Event seat he won in Event 6 would be his only entry in the CPC’s championship event. If he busts, so be it. If he does something special with it, that’s fine too. At 38 years old, he’s already achieved something more special than any tournament victory at home in Dubuque, Iowa.
Event six was the sixth of 10 numbered events on the 2015 Chicago Poker Classic Schedule. The $360 OE tournament boasted a prize pool of $37,516 and paid the top 16 finishers. Additionally, the top three finishers received $2,000 CPC Main Event seats added to the prize pool courtesy of the Horseshoe.
The CPC is recognized as the largest non-branded poker tournament series in the United States. In its seven-year history, the event has been headlined most notably by 2013’s 5,165-entry opener – one of the largest tournaments ever to take place outside the confines of Las Vegas and the World Series of Poker.
This year’s series began March 5 and runs through March 16 with the $2,000 Main Event beginning March 13.
Event 6 final results:
1st: William Slaght, Jr. – $10,505 + $2,000 seat
2nd: Scott Ward – $6,493 + $2,000 seat
3rd: Brett Godsey – $4,298 + $2,000 seat
4th: Joe Renghini – $3,304
5th: Brian Schwartz – $2,276
6th: Nicholas Alumbaugh – $1,807
7th: Michael Matheny – $1,515
8th: Keith Correll – $1,336
9th: Chris Tryba – $1,019
10th: Eric Nolan – $1,019
11th: Andrew Battad – $819
12th: Bruce Dubin – $819
13th: Michael Hamilton – $688
14th: Scott Bohlman – $688
15th: Robert Burns – $600
16th: Don Sukantawanich – $600
2014 Chicago Poker Classic results:
Event 1: $360 NLH Re-Entry – Zal Irani defeated 2,296 entries for $100,000
Event 2A/B: $250 NLH – Michael “NarcoCop” Younan defeated 634 entries for $28,813
Event 3: $500 PLO – David Arfa defeated 165 entries for $18,496
Event 4: $500 H2O – Shawn Rice defeated 76 entries for $10,127
Event 5: $360 NLH – David Eliason defeated 122 entries $10,544
Event 6: $400 OE – William Slaght, Jr. defeated 113 entries for $10,505
Event 7: $600 NLH – TBD
2014 Chicago Poker Classic upcoming numbered events:
Event #8A/B: $2,000 Main Event, Friday/Saturday, March 13/14 at noon
Event #9: $250 NLH – Saturday, March 14 at 3 and 6 p.m., Sunday, March 15 at noon, 3 and 6 p.m.
Event #10: $360 Turbo – Monday, March 16 at noon