WSOP 2016: Bracelet Winner Laplante Honors Orlando Shooting Victims

Ryan Laplante has just won the 2016 WSOP $565 PLO event for $190,328, and during his acceptance speech the openly gay poker pro took the opportunity to pay tribute to the 51 victims who lost their lives at the Orlando nightclub shooting that took place on June 12th. As the 26-year-old commented after his victory:
“I wasn’t going to give a speech today, but June is Gay Pride Month in the United States and last night, at a gay dance club in Orlando, the largest shooting massacre in US history occurred, in which over 50 people lost their lives and even more were sent to the hospital.So, even though I wasn’t going to speak, I have four things I wanted to say.”
Ryan Laplante subsequently went on to thank all the people who have supported him over the years, including his fiancé Chris, before saying he was proud to be both a World Series of Poker champion, as well as an openly gay man. Laplante ended his speech by encouraging people to be “proud of who you are”, and to “treat each other with love and respect.”
A total of 2,483 players entered the $565 PLO event to create a prize pool worth $1,241,500, and amongst the notable pros seeing a return on their investments was Yevgeniy Timoshenko in 95th ($1,523), Shannon Shorr in 87th ($1,750), David Baker in 50th ($3,385), Robert Mizrachi in 35th ($5,006), and Chris Ferguson in 13th ($9,696).
Ryan Laplante then entered the final table in 6th place, and managed to eliminate seven of his remaining opponents, including Sean Shah heads-up, to claim the coveted title. Commenting on what the victory meant to him, Laplante explained:
“The World Series of Poker is the biggest thing in the game, and if you don’t have a bracelet to some degree people don’t consider you as big of a name. For them it’s like, ’He’s so good, but he’s still missing this.’ To get something like this when I have been working so hard for it for so long and have had so many big sweats it’s just incredible.”
The victory represents Laplante’s biggest score to date, and now pushes his career earnings to $737,891. His second biggest score also came at the WSOP in 2014 after finishing the $3k NL event in 5th for $113,796.
Final Table Results:
1: Ryan Laplante $190,328
2: Sean Shah $117,531
3: Tesfaldet Tekle $85,870
4: Richard St. Peter $63,304
5: Charles Coultas $47,092
6: Adil Khan $35,353
7: Matthew Livingston $26,786
8: Darryll Fish $20,484
9: Grant Ellis $15,813

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