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The 2005 World Series of Poker Main Event created one of the best characters in poker history. Shawn Sheikhan emerged from obscurity as a "tattoo artist" to become the perfect sparring partner for Mike 'The Mouth' Matusow. Their battles raged during the final days of the tournament and created a shelf life for Sheikhan as a foil for televised poker in the 2000s. A villain for the ages, Sheikhan left the Main Event with no additional fans. Sheikhan first appeared on the ESPN cameras with about eight tables left. During a hand against Tiffany Williamson, Sheikhan used coarse language in telling Williamson to speed up her decision in a hand and turned the viewing audience against him right away. His aggressive tone combined with rude tactics confirmed his place among the bullies. Sheikhan's half-ass smirk did little to endear himself to an audience predisposed to disliking brash characters. Loud poker players are not new from the era but those who went of their way to put down opponents at every turn was new. Mike Matusow needled with a smile, Sheikhan made sure to slice. The $600,000 won by Sheikhan for finishing 11th is secondary to the fame gained by his verbal outbursts. In an era of William Kassouf's "speech play," Sheikhan was one step ahead and antagonized an entire field for the ESPN cameras to see. Sheikhan's target heading into the final table was Matusow, who all but 'declared war' on his noisy opponent. Their head-to-head peaked when Matusow told Sheikhan to "shut the fuck up" in the middle of a hand. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GyyNMoTv0p0 The Kassouf-Griffin Benger clash is the most visceral moment of the Main Event from the last few years but their slap-fight pales in comparison to Sheikhan versus Matusow. The tension between the pair could cut a knife. When else will we see another encounter with 27 players remaining when one calls the other's all-in with seven-deuce out of spite? Sheikhan created that level of hatred from Matusow, who wanted Sheikhan gone almost as bad as he wanted the $7.5 million first-place prize. Post-2005, Sheikhan was on every poker television show. Sheikhan ignited an epic rant from Phil Hellmuth on the first episode of Poker After Dark. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RBmnbOj1vUI&t=100s Black Friday came along and Sheikhan's place in the game faded away. Poker television no longer needed a player better known for being a jerk without any actual skills to back up his petulance. Years later, Sheikhan's place in the poker world has quieted down. He makes the occasional appearance in WSOP events but never repeated the noise made in 2005. This summer, he final tabled the $10,000 2-7 Single Draw event for his 13th career WSOP cash. The last time Sheikhan cashed in the event that made him famous was in 2013. There, Sheikhan played with Doyle Brunson on one of the feature tables. Brunson summed up Sheikhan's career as only the Texan can. After exceeding the allotted amount yatter from Sheikhan, Brunson said, "You talk too much." That is Shawn Sheikhan.
Shaun Deeb's third career World Series of Poker bracelet win came with an added bonus. The $25,000 Pot Limit Omaha High Roller champion now leads the WSOP Player of the Year race as of June 25. Deeb owns 2,662.25 points with 1,236.4 of them coming from his $1.4 million payday. Elio Fox drops to third as his hot run fades for the first time since the start of the WSOP when he won the $10,000 Super Turbo Bounty and finished second in the $100,000 High Roller. Fox is in third place behind another bracelet winner in 2018. John Hennigan went on a two-week run that finished up with a second-place finish in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship. Hennigan earned that silver medal immediately after winning his fifth bracelet in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. The Poker Players Championship finished with Hennigan leading POY only to be overtaken by Deeb a few days later. Deeb also cashed in the PPC, taking 10th. Hennigan and Deeb cashed together in the PPC and the $2,500 Big Bet Mix and are separated by less than 100 points on the leaderboard. Deeb leads the WSOP with 10 cashes this summer, tied with 2017 Player of the Year Chris Ferguson. Two bracelet winners in No Limit Hold'em events are up to the fourth and fifth place positions, respectively. Mario Prats Garcia surges to the fourth spot thanks to his first trip to the WSOP winner's circle in the $1,000 Big Blind Ante Turbo. Prats Garcia finished second in a $1,500 NLHE event in 2017 and bettered the result this year. Other cashes for Prats Garcia this summer include a Day 2 appearance in The Colossus, 62nd place in Millionaire Maker, and a min-cash in the DoubleStack. Eric 'basebaldy' Baldwin now has a bracelet for both wrists. The $1,500 No Limit Hold'em champion claimed $319,580 for the heads up win over Ian Steinman along with 1,075.90 points. The win was the sixth cash for Baldwin, whose previous best result the last five weeks was a 22nd place run in the $3,000 Six-Max. Joe Cada and Paul Volpe are treading water in the top-10 but have added few points since their respective bracelet wins in the early days of the WSOP. All of Volpe's five cashes this summer are in events of at least a $10,000 buy-in. Ben Yu put on a show and made the podium twice in two different games. Yu placed third in the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship and fell to Deeb in second place at the $25,000 PLO final table. The PLO result is Yu's largest career tournament cash of $866,924. Yu is tied for third in 2018 WSOP cashes with nine. Bracelet winner Daniel Ospina almost became the first player of the summer to win two but fell two spost shy in the $2,500 Omaha/Stud Hi-Lo event. In only three cashes, Ospina is up to ninth place. Dylan Linde made two consecutive final tables and launched himself into the top-10 as a result. Linde took fourth in the $1,500 NLHE Shootout and then fifth in the $2,500 No Limit Hold'em event. Top 10 2018 WSOP Player Of The Year Points Thru 6/26 Position Name Points 1 Shaun Deeb 2,662.25 2 John Hennigan 2,556.43 3 Elio Fox 2,010.14 4 Mario Prats Garcia 1,751.25 5 Eric Baldwin 1,738.42 6 Paul Volpe 1,733.12 7 Joe Cada 1,692.71 8 Ben Yu 1,587.71 9 Daniel Ospina 1,504.22 10 Dylan Linde 1,453.43
There may only be one new bracelet winner to tell you about after Monday’s 2018 World Series of Poker action, but there were plenty of other news-worthy happenings taking place within the Rio. Most notably, a two-time champion in the $50K Championship holding a dominating chip lead at the six-handed final table. Here’s everything you need to know about June 18. Matthew Davis Wins Largest Ever Seniors Event for $662,983 Our latest winner, Matthew Davis, is a statistics teacher at Chabot College in Haywood, California. If you looked up his poker statistics, they’ll now show he’s a WSOP bracelet holder with $662,983 as his largest cash. This year’s Event #32: $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship was the largest in history, drawing a massive 5,919 entries. Monday saw a crazy final table play out, complete with quads and big suckouts, and Davis was able to navigate his way through the hubbub on his way to the win. Joseph Schulman was the first player to exit, after a set over set encounter against Bill Bennett. Bennett would also eliminate Frank Berry in seventh too, when his ace-deuce out-flopped Berry’s ace-seven. Rachel Delatorre was next to go, under very unfortunate circumstances. She got all her chips in on a nine-high flop with pocket tens, and Davis called - also holding pocket tens. However, the turn and river gave Davis a flush. Bennett, start-of-day chip leader Gary Friedlander, and Scott Hamilton-Hill were the next to fall, leaving Davis heads-up with Bill Stabler, both even in chips. In the final hand, the first and only all-in and call during heads-up, Davis had Stabler covered with a flush draw versus Stabler’s pair, only to river a bigger pair to clinch victory. Davis had a fun story about his previous WSOP exploits: "I came and played my first WSOP event in 2007, and I managed to secure a little over a min-cash. And I was talking to my daughter afterward - she was in first or second grade - and she asked me how much I had to spend to enter the tournament, so I told her that it was a $1,500 event. "So she said 'Wow, Dad that's kind of a big risk!' And I was curious by what she meant by that, I mean she was only six or seven. So I asked her. And she said 'Well Dad, you're not that good at poker!' "And now I have a bracelet!” Final Table Results: Matthew Davis - $662,983 Bill Stabler - $409,456 Scott Hamilton-Hill - $303,859 Gary Friedlander - $227,111 Bill Bennett - $170,973 Rachel Delatorre - $129,648 Frank Berry - $99,032 Joseph Schulman - $76,204 Michael Mizrachi Eyes Third $50K Title If we’d forced you to put money on who you thought would be chip leading the final table of Event #33: $50,000 Poker Players Champion, chances are you would have picked Michael Mizrachi. After all, the Grinder has bagged the lead for the past two days running on his way towards a potential third victory in this event. Mizrachi does indeed lead with six players remaining, holding a massive chip lead of 8,865,000. His next closest competitor is Dan Smith with 4,485,000. Aaron Katz, Mike Leah, Benny Glaser, and John Hennigan round out the finale. Throughout the day’s action we lost the likes of Jean-Robert Bellande, Chris Vitch, Shaun Deeb, Brian Rast, and Phil Ivey. Greg Mueller was the official final table bubble boy, getting unfortunate to bust in 7th to Mizrachi after the Grinder rivered a straight against Mueller’s turned set in a limit hold’em hand. Action resumes at 2pm Tuesday, with all players guaranteed $191,234. The winner will receive $1,239,126. Final Table Stacks: Michael Mizrachi - 8,865,000 Dan Smith - 4,485,000 Aaron Katz - 2,600,000 John Hennigan - 2,400,000 Benny Glaser - 2,210,000 Mike Leah - 1,220,000 Three Remain in $1,500 Mixed Omaha Play in Event #35: $1,500 Mixed Omaha came to an end Monday night with just three players remaining, all of whom will return tomorrow to play down to a champ. Yueqi Zhu holds a massive chip lead over Gabriel Ramos and Carol Fuchs, will the minimum payout now $89,488. They’ll want the $211,781 first-place prize though, and with 78% of the chips in play, China’s Zhu is in pole position. Fuchs is experienced though, having won her first bracelet back in 2015 when she took down the $1,500 Dealer's Choice event. Matthew Gregoire (4th), Jon Turner (5th), and Peter Neff (6th) all busted the final table earlier in proceedings. They’ll return at 2pm to play this one out. You’ll find the chip counts below: Yueqi Zhu - 4,515,000 Gabriel Ramos - 970,000 Carol Fuchs - 310,000 Daniel Colpoys Leads 162 In Double Stack After two starting flights, Event #34: $1,000 DOUBLE STACK No-Limit Hold’em played through its Day 2 today, bringing the 5,700 total field down to 162. Daniel Colpoys holds the overnight chip lead with 1,405,000, followed by David Kaiura with 1,237,000, and Yosuke Sekiya with 1,208,000. Other notables set to return tomorrow include Isaac Baron (942,000), Mike Del Vecchio (888,000), Andrey Zaichenko (819,000), Tony Dunst (571,000), Richard Dubini (125,000), Alex Rocha (87,000), and Maria Lampropulos (262,000). Throughout the day, the likes of Chris Moorman, start-of-day chip leader Brian Yoon, Greg Raymer, Steve Sung, Jeff Madsen, Gaurav Raina, David Bach, Andre Akkari, David Peters, Calvin Anderson, Felipe Ramos, Mohsin Charania and Kathy Liebert all hit the rail. Day 3 begins at 12pm Tuesday, with the min-cash currently worth $4,215. The winner will get $644,224. Top 10 Stacks: Daniel Colpoys - 1,405,000 David Kaiura - 1,237,000 Yosuke Sekiya - 1,208,000 Osman Ihlamur - 1,067,000 Steven Tymms - 1,062,000 Tomas Teran Paredes - 1,009,000 Stevan Chew - 998,000 Mike Takayama - 963,000 DID NOT REPORT - 1 942,000 Emerick Wiatrek - 928,000 Super Seniors Move On To Day 3 They’re down to 43 in Event #36: $1,000 Super Seniors No-Limit Hold’em, after 347 of the 2,219 field returned Monday for Day 2. Jerry Weber holds the overnight chip lead with 884,000, followed by Paul W Lee (573,000), John Borzio (523,000), Linda Iwaniak (521,000), James Brown (513,000), and John Erickson (502,000). A few players who busted today include Michael Moore (125th Place- $2,209), Konstantin Puchkov (180th Place- $1,972), Gary Benson (230th Place- $1,780), and Chris Bjorin (263rd Place- $1,625). All 43 players have $6,650 locked up, while the winner will get $311,451. Play resumes at 11am Tuesday. Top 10 Stacks: Jerry Weber - 884,000 Paul W Lee - 573,000 John Borzio - 523,000 Linda Iwaniak - 521,000 James Brown - 513,000 John Erickson - 502,000 Charles Thompson - 485,000 Larry Ross - 436,000 Bruce Hugon - 401,000 Jean Didier - 354,000 Banks Bags Biggest in $1,500 NLHE Event #37: $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em kicked off today, with 1,330 runners taking a shot. When all was said and done just 236 remain, and it’s Kirk Banks who will sleep the best. Banks bagged up a chip-leading stack of 179,100, but he’s followed by Michael Rocco (160,000), Duy Ho (158,500), Joe Couden (155,900), Anatoly Filatov (129,000), and Stephen Song (124,600). Barry Greenstein will return tomorrow, albeit with a very short stack of 11,500. Aaron Massey (97,000), Eoghan O'Dea (91,200), bestselling writer Maria Konnikova (88,200), and two-time bracelet winner Andy Frankenberger (80,300) will also be back for Day 2. Things get going again at 12pm Tuesday. Only 200 players will make the money, with a min-cash worth $2,249 and $319,580 plus the WSOP gold bracelet for the winner. Top 10 Stacks: Kirk Banks - 179,100 Michael Rocco - 160,000 Duy Ho - 158,500 Joseph Couden - 155,900 Anatoly Filatov - 129,000 Baitai Li - 125,800 Stephen Song - 124,600 Ken Norton - 113,400 Gene Harrill - 113,300 DID NOT REPORT - 111,000 Yu and Negreanu Top Stud Championship Another event that kicked off on Monday was Event #38: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship, and it brought out 76 entries. After ten 60-minute levels, it’s Ben Yu who bagged the chip lead with 280,000. He’s followed by Daniel Negreanu (212,000), Al Barbieri (208,000), and Scott Seiver (202,500). Just 27 players now remain, with the likes of Anthony Zinno, Jason Mercier, Nick Schulman, David Benyamine, Andre Akkari, Shaun Deeb, Ray Dehkharghani, Jeff Lisandro, Eli Elezraand, and Adam Friedman hitting the rail throughout the day. Defending champ Mike Wattel will be back tomorrow though, bagging up 154,500. Registration is still open until the beginning of Day 2, tomorrow at 2pm. Top 10 Stacks: Ben Yu - 280,000 Daniel Negreanu - 212,000 Al Barbieri - 208,000 Scott Seiver - 202,500 Jordan Siegel - 174,500 Eric Kurtzman - 173,500 Yaniv Birman - 169,500 Michael Mckenna - 168,000 Michael Sigel - 166,500 Paul Mangine - 162,000 Tomorrow’s Action (June 19) If all of the above action wasn’t enough for you, there are two brand spanking new events set to get started on Tuesday. Kicking off at 11am is Event #39: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout. Shootout formats are always popular at the WSOP, perhaps for the novelty factor, or perhaps because the days tend to be shorter. Then, a bit later at 3pm, there’s Event #40: $2,500 Mixed Big Bet. That tournament sees players play a rotation of No-Limit Hold’em, PLO, 2-7 NL Lowball, NL 5 Card Draw, Big O, PLO Hi-Lo, and 2-7 Pot Limit Triple Draw. Players are allowed one re-entry.