WSOP 2021: Phil Hellmuth Shooting for Seven Card Stud Glory with Zinno and McClelland on His Tail

Phil Hellmuth
Phil Hellmuth is close to capturing a record-extending 16th WSOP bracelet.

Phil Hellmuth is in pole position to make it ‘sweet sixteen’ as he has made it to the final table of the 19th event of the 2021 World Series of Poker with a chip lead in the Seven Card Stud Championship. Hellmuth, otherwise known as ‘The Poker Brat’, bagged up 751,000 to lead the final seven, with Anthony Zinno close behind him in the counts on 730,000 chips.

Hellmuth, Chidwick, McCelland Make $10K Stud Final Table

It’s not only Hellmuth who will go into the final day of action as a recognized face looking to win more gold. Stephen Chidwick (266,000) and Jack McClelland (185,000) may have fewer chips, but anything can happen and the chips can change very quickly in mixed games. With James Chen (660,000), Jose Paz-Gutierrez (586,000) and Jason Gola (542,000) all still in contention, it is bound to be an entertaining final session on Monday evening.

On Day 2, just three players made the money as the top 10 were paid with Daniel Zack busted in 10th place by Stephen Chidwick for a result worth $16,262, George Alexander eliminated in 9th place for $17,828, and Scott Bohlman losing his tournament life in 8th place for $20,480. Both Alexander and Bohlman were taken out by Jason Gola as the night wound to a close.

WSOP 2021 Event #19 Seven Card Stud Championship Final Table Chipcounts:

  1. Phil Hellmuth – 751,000
  2. Anthony Zinno – 730,000
  3. James Chen – 660,000
  4. Jose Paz-Gutierrez – 586,000
  5. Jason Gola – 542,000
  6. Stephen Chidwick – 266,000
  7. Jack McClelland – 185,000

Mixed Triple Draw Lowball Event in the Balance as Early Hours End Play

The $2,500-entry Mixed Triple Draw Lowball saw what should have been its final day end with heads-up on hiatus as Vladimir Peck and Venkata Tayi ended the action locked in a battle for the WSOP bracelet.

The day began with 12 still in seats. Once play was down to the seven-handed final table, Brian Yoon had the chip lead, and several players were very short stacked. The lowest of the low was Carlos Rodriguez, who busted almost immediately in seventh place for $15,272 in A-5 Triple Draw, losing his stack to Joao Vieira.

Hal Rotholz was the next player to depart, losing in 2-7 Triple Draw in a hand against Yoon and Venkata Tayi for a sixth-place prize of $20,828. He was followed from the event by Brian Yoon, but it was a protracted period of play that lasted beyond a dinner break and ended in a Badugi bust-out for $28,818 as Vieira again came out on top in the clash between the two remaining bracelet winners in the field.

It was Badugi again that delivered Aaron Rogers from the event, as the American player fell victim to Vieira in fourth place for $40,443. Despite winning that hand, however, Vieira himself fell in third place for $57,558, albeit over an hour later. Losing in A-5 Triple Draw, Tayi was again the beneficiary, claiming a pot that gave him the leads heads-up with 5.3 million chips to Vladimir Peck’s 3.5 million.

The heads-up battle that followed was so long that with the time approaching 3 am, both Peck and Tayi were asked if they wanted to play one more level or come back the next day. That level concluded with Peck on 3,275,000 chips, with Tayi in the lead on 5,575,000. Play will resume – and doubtless conclude – on Day 12 when the gold is finally won.

WSOP 2021 Event #18 $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball Final Table Results:

3rd – Joao Vieira – $57,558

4th – Aaron Rogers – $40,443

5th – Brian Yoon – $28,818

6th – Hal Rotholz – $20,828

7th – Carlos Rodriguez – $15,272

The Field Narrows on Millionaire Maker Day 2

The Millionaire Maker has become one of the signature events on the WSOP calendar in Las Vegas and this year’s return to Rio has seen a total of 5,330 entries and a prize pool of just under $8 million. As the event name tells you, that means a million up top and after Day 2 trimmed the remaining 1,174 players down to just 170 hopefuls, it was Darryl Ronconi who bagged the biggest stack.

Ronconi’s chip mountain of 2,545,000 is a three-bet and a call ahead of both Apolinario Luis (2,345,000) and Thomas Eychenne (2,275,000), both of whom have terrific stacks with which to attack Day 3, but they’re not the only ones.

In the top 10 alone, there are some fearsome players armed to the teeth with raising chips, with Shahar Levi (1,955,000) and Faraz Jaka (1,625,000) standing out as ones to watch. A little further back in the field, Ryan Hagerty (1,100,000), Tristan Wade (1,500,000), Craig Varnell (765,000) Yiming Li (595,000), Stephen Song (1,385,000) all bagged up stacks at the close of play.

So too did Vanessa Kade (1,520,000), who knows all about winning over a million after taking down the Sunday Million earlier this year. Kade detailed her personal experience of a fairly sour end to Day 1a on Twitter that has definitely seen some karma come her way on Day 2.

Every tournament win is a battle but perhaps never more so than at the World Series of Poker, with Ari Engel, who has already won a bracelet this series admitting it was some time before he hit his stride.

WSOP 2021 Event #17 Millionaire Maker Top 10 Chipcounts:

  1. Darryl Ronconi – 2,545,000
  2. Apolinario Luis – 2,345,000
  3. Thomas Eychenne – 2,275,000
  4. John Fagg – 1,970,000
  5. Shahar Levi – 1,955,000
  6. Michael Mcnicholas – 1,670,000
  7. Faraz Jaka – 1,625,000
  8. Arie Kliper – 1,615,000
  9. Luis Zedan – 1,570,000
  10. Jeffery Wakamiya – 1,555,000

David Peters Survives Flip & Go Day 1

The $1,000-entry Flip & Go event, Event #20, saw just 23 players survive from a starting field of 1,232. David Williams had more tries than most at making the money in Event #20 and was applauded by most for his efforts on Twitter.


When the dust settled, there were plenty of big names still in with a chance of adding what is a unique WSOP bracelet to their collection. Huy Lam (3,150,000) bagged up by far the biggest stack of the day and leads from Corey Bierria (1,880,000) by some distance.

Players such as Rok Gostisa (1,115,000) and David Peters (1,105,000) will look to use all their experience to put themselves in contention for the top prize. Others, such as Daniel Negreanu, Shaun Deeb, and Gal Yifrach all busted before the close of play.

WSOP 2021 Event #20 $1,000 Flip & Go Top 10 Chipcounts:

  1. Huy Lam – 3,150,000
  2. Corey Bierria – 1,880,000
  3. Krista Farrell – 1,700,000
  4. David Towson – 1,600,000
  5. Mark Ingram – 1,385,000
  6. Joao Valli – 1,350,000
  7. Fred Goldberg – 1,245,000
  8. Roman Hrabec – 1,200,000
  9. Rok Gostisa – 1,115,000
  10. David Peters – 1,105,000

Daniel Negreanu, Ari Engel Bag Chips In $1,500 Mixed Omaha 8

There were 640 players who took on the $1,500 Mixed Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better event and after a long first day of the tournament, only 199 players zipped up chips. It is local Henderson, Nevada-based player Scott Abrams who leads the pack with 275,000 chips, but plenty of other big players are still in with a great chance of a deep run, with Ari Engel (238,000) going for his second bracelet this live series.

Others such as Daniel Negreanu (147,000), John Monnette (103,500), Randy Ohel (83500), Dylan Linde (106,500), and Derek McMaster (162,500) all bagged up chips, with stars such as Eli Elezra, Mike Matusow, Nathan Gamble, Jake Daniels, Ken Aldridge, Ben Yu, and Barry Greenstein.

WSOP 2021 Event #21 $1,500 Mixed Omaha Hi-Lo or Better Top 10 Chipcounts:

  1. Scott Abrams – 275,000
  2. Ari Engel – 230,000
  3. Nathaniel Katzoff – 222,500
  4. PJ Cha – 215,000
  5. Cody Scherer – 207,000
  6. John Cernuto – 178,000
  7. Yonatan Smith – 177,500
  8. Edward Han – 167,000
  9. Derek McMaster – 162,500
  10. Julien Martini – 150,500

Chance Kornuth isn’t just a former WSOP bracelet winner but would not stand by and watch a dealer getting berated. The comments section on his latest act at the poker table tell how most players and fans back his actions.

The spirit of fun seems to have taken over players of the highest standard, with poker legend Erik Seidel joking about a ‘ruff’ time over at his table.

Finally, he may not be at the World Series of Poker yet, but if the Rio does play host to Dan ‘Jungleman’ Cates, then it could be the closing story we all need. Just… unique.