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The average age of the 2020 World Series of Poker online bracelet winner skewed a little bit higher last Friday when in the wee hours of the morning, 70-year-old businessman from Iowa and high-stakes cash game player Ron ‘MacDaddy15’ McMillen capped off an incredible victory in WSOP Event #9 ($1,000 NLHE Six Max) for $188,214 and his first-career gold bracelet. “I fulfilled part of a dream (Friday) night,” said McMillen. “That was a long time coming, it’s pretty special for me.” It’s safe to say not many expected an elder statesman of the poker community like McMillen to take down what some might argue is the toughest tournament on the WSOP.com summer bracelet schedule. But despite it “absolutely” being McMillen's very first online tournament, the ‘MacDaddy’ is anything like your average septuagenarian. “I've always lived by the philosophy, and the older I get, that I don't let the old man in.” While many his age (and, yes, younger) were sound asleep, McMillen was on the thrill ride that is a WSOP final table. As he was experiencing the highs of completing a decades-long goal, it was his youthful mindset that was key to keeping him in the game. McMillen doesn’t think of himself as some ‘old guy’ and he certainly doesn’t give in to how some may think a man of his age should behave. He surrounds himself with a younger crowd, competing against players decades his junior, learning from them and also teaching them a lesson or two. “People say I'm young for my age, but mentally I'm really young for my age, and I think [my age] just doesn't come into play for me because I guess I just embrace it so much,” he said. “And I embrace life so much. I'm just not going to let age bother me or get in my way.” “You've got to live every day, you know? And I don't care if you're in pain, just go for it. And I might've been a little tired last night, but it wasn't going to get my way. It's just fun. I'm just having too much fun.” Despite what he called “extremely tough” competition against “real deal” players, McMillen never felt like he didn’t belong in the tournament. Prior to diving into the deep end of chasing online bracelets, McMillen has stayed sharp by competing in high stakes cash games over the past few years. While keeping the details of his private game close to the vest except that it’s “high enough stakes that most people wouldn’t want to be in the game”, he does acknowledge that it was a gateway for him when it came to exploring tournaments. “I play against unbelievable competition for getting me where I’ve gotten,” he said. “Of course, we all know that cash and tournaments are two different animals, but at the same time there’s some cross over,” he said. “I've played a lot more cash, but I still love the tournament format. It's taught me patience. It's taught me a different aspect. I’m, I guess, what you'd call an alpha male, a ‘Type A’, and patience is not a virtue. In tournament poker, you have to be patient. And it's kind of helped me in that respect.” “I’ve absolutely embraced tournament poker because I have a great gift of gab. I'm great with numbers, but it's a big learning curve to do it right, and I've gotten really good at it, I feel. And I feel like I've really come into my own.” McMillen may have known the difference between cash games and tournaments, but he was about to also get a crash course in the difference between live and online tournaments. Not everything that has worked for him in his live games translated. “Well, to tell you the truth, my specialty is that I'm a great bullshitter,” he said before telling a tale from playing in a live game the night before his bracelet win. “I talked the guy into a couple-thousand dollar call. I have the stone-cold nuts, and this guy is getting ready to lay it down. And I started talking, dying [for him] to make the call. And you can't do that online.” “It’s so different because you can’t adjust to the personalities. Now, when I play live, I don’t play with hats on, I don’t play with sunglasses. I don’t believe in them,” he said. “I think you should be able to go face up with somebody. I love to look at somebody nose to nose…that’s all out the window with online.” McMillen’s first foray into online poker certainly will not be his last. He plans on trying to become the first WSOP Online two-time bracelet winner while embracing what he’s already accomplished so far this summer. “It kind of defines you, you know? It does. Yeah. Now I have a bracelet, and we've celebrated twice with Dom Perignon, last night at three and today at lunch. And I don't know, I just can't explain it. It takes such pressure off of you in a way, but it's such a feeling of accomplishment for a poker player. It's just amazing.” But even while his goal of racking up bracelets will always be there, he’s still focused on the one goal that’s served him well up to this point. It’s a reminder to everyone, both inside the game and out. “Just remember, never let the old man in.”
It took just 55 minutes on Friday morning for 'MacDaddy15' to go from middle of the final table pack to World Series of Poker bracelet winner in Event #9 ($1,000 NLHE Six Max) and in the process earn the single biggest score of the 2020 WSOP to date. A total of 1,026 entries from 658 unique players created a $974,700 prize pool with the eventual champion getting to take home $188,214 and the bracelet. When the final table began, Ruth 'crazeeelf666' Ruffman held a comfortable chip lead with 'WillowG23' in second and 'MacDaddy15' not far behind in third. Ian 'apokerjoker2' Steinman was the first player sent packing by 'MacDaddy15'. From the button, 'MacDaddy15' raised to 332,500 with [poker card="2d"][poker card="2s"] before Steinman moved all in for 1,365,109 with [poker card="ad"][poker card="9d"]. 'MacDaddy15' called and then had to sweat all the way through a [poker card="kd"][poker card="qd"][poker card="5s"][poker card="js"][poker card="jc"] runout to eliminate Steinman in sixth. Five-handed play lasted another 15 minutes before the next elimination hand occurred. 'Im.Sorry' raised to 250,000 from the cutoff with [poker card="kh"][poker card="jd"] before 'moodeez' re-raised all in for 890,486 from the small blind with [poker card="jh"][poker card="th"] and 'Im.Sorry' called. The [poker card="ac"][poker card="kc"][poker card="4d"] flop gave 'Im.Sorry' second pair and the [poker card="5c"] turn and [poker card="5h"] river failed to save 'moodeez' from a fifth place finish. A few moments later, 'Im.Sorry' raised to 254,000 from the hijack with [poker card="qh"][poker card="qs"] only to have Ruth 'crazeelf666' re-raise to 806,000 with [poker card="td"][poker card="ts"]. 'Im.sorry' continued betting, moving all in for 4,489,926 and Ruffman called all in. Ruffman was unable to improve on the [poker card="ac"][poker card="8d"][poker card="2d"][poker card="6h"][poker card="5h"] runout and was eliminated in fourth. 'Im.Sorry' continued to be the aggressor and ended another player's run five minutes later. 'Im.Sorry' called from the button and 'WillowG23' checked their big blind. The flop came [poker card="kc"][poker card="7h"][poker card="3d"] and 'WillowG23' checked and then called after 'Im.Sorry' threw in a bit of 160,000. The turn was the [poker card="jc"] and 'WillowG23' check-called after 'Im.Sorry' bet 225,000. The river was the [poker card="5c"], 'WillowG23' checked and 'Im.Sorry' moved all-in for 10,070,712 . 'WillowG23' called all in for 1,614,568 and showed [poker card="ks"][poker card="9c"] for top pair but 'Im.Sorry' turned over [poker card="7c"][poker card="6c"] for a flush to send 'WillowG23' home in third position. That both gave 'Im.Sorry' 62.8% of the chips at the start of heads up play. The play played for nearly 15 minutes before 'MacDaddy15' took over the lead thanks to winning an all in preflop hand with [poker card="tc"][poker card="ts"] against the [poker card="ad"][poker card="qs"] of 'Im.Sorry'. Two minutes later, the tournament was over. Down to 10 big blinds, 'Im.Sorry' open-shoved for 1,752,560 with [poker card="kh"][poker card="4c"] and 'MacDaddy15' called with [poker card="td"][poker card="5d"]. The [poker card="kd"][poker card="7d"][poker card="6h"] flop gave 'MacDaddy15' a flush draw and gave 'Im.Sorry' to pair. The [poker card="qd"] turn filled that flush draw and eliminated 'Im.Sorry' as the runner-up as the [poker card="2c"] completed the board to officially crown 'MacDaddy15' as the winner. Final Table Payouts MacDaddy15 - $188,214 Im.Sorry - $116,379 WillowG23 - $81,972 Ruth 'crazeelf666' Ruffman - $58,482 mooodeez - $43,301 Ian 'apokerjoker2' Steinman - $30,995 Faces in the Crowd The #1-ranked player in the United States, Yong 'LuckySpewy1' Kwon, came in 56th for $2,729.16 and was one of a handful of notable names to make it into the money. Daniel Negreanu picked up another cash, his fourth, coming in 96th for $1,851.93 and Event #1 champion Jonathan 'Art.Vandelay' Dokler snuck into the top 100, finishing 99th for $1,851.93. A pair of former #1 PocketFivers also had a winning day. Ari 'philivey' Engel finished 105th for $1,754.46 and Chris 'Robotbob47' Moorman was behind him, coming in 141st to take home $1,656.99. Anthony 'heheh' Zinno (22nd - $5,360.25), Shawn 'Saygoodnight' Daniels (37th - $3,703.86), Nick 'cashUSklay' Schulman (43rd - $3,703.86), and Kevin 'ImaLuckSac' MacPhee (95th - $1,851.93) also cashed.