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Found 23 results

  1. [caption width="640"] John Hennigan was one of three WSOP bracelet winners on Wednesday. (WSOP photo)[/caption] Three players found their way into the winner's circle on Wednesday at the 2016 World Series of Poker. John Hennigan won his fourth career WSOP bracelet, taking down the $10,000 Triple Draw Championship. Hennigan admitted after his win that he only played the event to get himself away from the cash games where he'd been losing recently. Jason Mercier didn't win a bracelet on Wednesday, but he did advance to Day 2 of the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship. He was one of a handful of former bracelet winners to advance. Event #44: Steven Wolansky Wins Second Bracelet in $1K No Limit Hold'em [caption width="640"] Steven Wolansky now has two WSOP bracelets after his victory on Wednesday (WSOP photo)[/caption] Two years ago Steven Wolansky won his first WSOP bracelet in a $1,500 No Limit Deuce to Seven event. On Wednesday he grabbed his second one, beating Wenlong Jin heads-up to win the $1,000 No Limit Hold'em event and nearly $300,000. “This win is just as meaningful, if not more,” Wolansky said. “The first one I won was more about me wanting to avenge my second place finish the previous year. I lost heads-up and that motivated me to prove to myself I could do it. But this time, it was a lot more money and plus the odds I had to overcome.” Wolansky and Jin were the only two players to return on Wednesday afternoon after the tournament was stopped Tuesday night after playing the maximum number of levels. When heads-up play began, Jin had Wolansky down 3-1 in chips. Final Table Payouts Steven Wolansky - $298,849 Wenlong Jin - $184,631 Bradley Myers - $133,955 Young Sik Eum - $98,150 Justin Zaki - $72,634 Dejan Boskovic - $54,294 Walter Rodriguez - $40,999 Zaher Sayegh - $31,278 Danny Illingworth - $24,111 Event #46: Kristen Bicknell Looking for Second Bracelet in $1500 Bounty Event So far this summer no female player has managed to win a bracelet. There have been close calls, Kerryjane Craigie finished runner-up in the Casino Employees event, and kindergarten teacher Lisa Meredith finished third in the Millionaire Maker. Former Ladies Event champ Kristen Bicknell is hoping to do one better than both of those finishes. Bicknell bagged up the chip lead with just three players remaining in the $1,500 Bounty event. Action was haulted on Wednesday night after playing down from 36 players over 10 levels of play. Bicknell finished Day 3 with 7,080,000, ahead of Norbert Szecsi's 5,600,000 and John Myung's 3,550,000. Among the 33 players who were eliminated on Wednesday were Calvin Anderson (31st - $7,550), Matt Stout (17th - $11,557), Jared Hamby (13th - $14,52) and Steve Gee (7th - $$40,203). Action resumes Thursday at Noon PT. Final Three Chip Counts Kristen Bicknell - 7,080,000 Norbert Szecsi - 5,600,000 John Myung - 3,550,000 Event #47: John Hennigan Wins $10,000 Triple Draw Championship John Hennigan won the fourth WSOP bracelet of his career, overcoming a final table full of bracelet winners and one of the players considered to be amongst the best without one. Hennigan outlasted the eight combined bracelets of Abe Mosseri, Viacheslav Zhukov, JC Tran, Michael Gathy and Chris Klodnicki. By his own estimation, Hennigan feels he didn't play all that well. "What was really striking to me is, I didn’t play that well. I got very lucky in this tournament. I didn’t really have it. But I got lucky at the right times," said Hennigan. "I bluffed and then caught, and I made so many hands. I normally think I played pretty well. But not this time. I played like shit." Hennigan admitted that he's been playing in the normally lucrative high stakes cash games that happen in Las Vegas during the WSOP, but was candid about how they've been going for him. "I’ve just been playing in the cash games this summer. But I’ve been losing. I was out of gas in the cash games, so I came over here to kill time," said Hennigan. "Those games are so big that it’s hard to concentrate on tournaments. So, I registered late at midnight - which is foolish. I gave up so many so many levels, but that’s what I did – and I’m glad I did." Klodnicki came into the final way with the chip lead and a shot at removing his name from the best-players-without-a-bracelet list that he's been a mainstay on for some time now. It didn't quite pan out for Klodnicki and he had to settle for a fourth place finish. Final Table Payouts Ankush Mandavia - $548,139 Daniel Strelitz - $338,774 Christian Nilles - $232,934 Thiago Macedo - $162,924 Pedro Oliveira $115,957 Sean Getzwiller $84,004 Sergey Lebedev - $61,964 Phil Hellmuth - $46,553 Kyle Julius - $35,636 Event #49: Eugene Katchalov Leads $1,500 Seven Card Stud Final Table Six of the final eight players in the $1,500 Seven Card Stud have already won a WSOP bracelet while the other two players have combined for one previous WSOP cash between them. Eugene Katchalov finished Day 2 with 521,000 and the chip lead over the likes of bracelet winners Shaun Deeb and Adam Friedman. Yaniv Birman has just one previous WSOP result, a 78th place finish in a $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha event in 2011, and Katherine Fleck has never cashed in a WSOP event before. Max Pescatori, John Monnette and Cory Zeidman round out the rest of the final table. Action resumes at 2 PM PT Thursday and will play down to a winner. Final Table Chip Counts Eugene Katchalov - 521,000 Shaun Deeb - 485,000 Adam Friedman - 396,000 Yaniv Birman - 386,000 Max Pescatori - 315,000 Katherine Fleck - 256,000 John Monnette - 85,000 Cory Zeidman - 44,000 Event #50: Selbst, Hastings, Farrell Advance to Day 2of $1,500 Shootout Day 1 of the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em shootout event saw 1,050 players enter hoping to win three straight sit n gos to win a WSOP bracelet. Among the group of players to win their first round match were Niall Farrell, Vanessa Selbst, Brian Hastings, Jeff Kimber, Sofia Lovgren, Tobias Reinkemeier and Konstantin Puchkov. The 120 players who advanced to Day 2 will play ten-handed tables on Thursday beginning at Noon Pt. Event #51: Steven McCuller Bags Huge Day 1 Chip Lead in $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship Germany's Steven McCuller finished Day 1 of the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship with nearly 500,000 chips - more than 50% more than any other player. McCuller finished with 498,600 while the second biggest stack, 330,200, belongs to Hokyiu Lee. Rep Porter and Michael Mizrachi also finished with top 10 stacks on Thursday. The event drew exactly 400 players including most of the biggest names in poker. Right now there is no bigger name than Jason Mercier. Seeking his third bracelet of the summer - and a massive prop bet for doing so - Mercier finished Day 1 with 218,800, a top 20 stack. Phil Hellmuth, fresh off of busting the $5,000 Turbo final table, Scott Clements, Joe Hachem and Antonio Esfandiari are among the players who entered but didn't make it to Day 2. Top 10 Chip Counts Steven Mcculler - 498,600 Hokyiu Lee - 330,200 Rep Porter - 293,700 Arie Miller - 292,000 Bobby Oboodi - 282,600 Michael Mizrachi - 276,900 Ivan Naumov - 271,000 Taylor McFarland - 264,700 Christopher Kruk - 263,800 Peter Park - 259,100
  2. Elio Fox remains on top of the World Series of Poker Player of the Year leaderboard but he has new player challenging him for the top spot. Two final tables and one bracelet later, John Hennigan is second overall heading into another big week at the WSOP. Hennigan started his rush with a solid seventh-place finish in the $10,000 NL 2-7 Single Draw event. Immediately after busting the tournament, Hennigan hopped in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Four days later, Hennigan beat that field to win his fifth bracelet and now stands with 1,727 POY points. Fox leads Hennigan by 283 points but that lead could shrink once again. The $50,000 Poker Players Championship returns 12 players for Day 4 action Monday at the Rio. Hennigan is still a viable contender having final tabled the event twice, winning it in 2014. If Hennigan finishes at least ninth, he will pass Fox for the POY lead and be the first person aside from Fox to wear the yellow jersey. Fox added 266.5 points to his total in Millionaire Maker for his 92nd place result. His numbers for 2018 now equal three cashes, two final tables, and a single win. Fox stated Player of the Year is not a goal of his but one-third of the way through the WSOP schedule, he is the favorite to finish on top. Arne Kern jumped from zero points all the way up to seventh (1,332.47) for winning Millionaire Maker for $1.173 million. Although he finished third in Millionaire Maker and picked up his second bronze medal of the series, Joe McKeehen is only in 25th place overall. McKeehen earned 599.6 points for Millionaire Maker, less than half of what Kern took for first. Only 666.2 points were available to Sam Razavi for taking second. The new WSOP Player of the Year formula favors first-place finishers and McKeehen and others, like Mike Wattel, are feeling the sting. Wattel place second in the $10,000 2-7 Single Draw for 493 points, exactly half of the 986 Brian Rast collected for first. The fourth-place finish for Wattel in the $1,500 2-7 Single Draw netted him 350.9 and he is in 20th heading into a new week at the WSOP. Another first-time bracelet winner to climb into the top-10 is $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha winner Ryan Bambrick. The win marked Bambrick's fourth cash of the summer. Bambrick earned the same 266.5 points as Fox did in Millionaire Maker for his 73rd place payout. Along with the 1,009.5 points allotted for his PLO bracelet and relative min-cashes in the $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. and $3,000 Six-Max, Bambrick is in fifth place with 1,431.46 points. Upcoming events on the WSOP calendar this week that could shift the tide include the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship, $25,000 PLO High Roller, and $1,500 Monster Stack. The winner of the Poker Players Championship has 1,315 points waiting for them. Contenders who could jump to first place with a win are Rast, Shaun Deeb, Eli Elezra, Chris Vitch, Jesse Martin, Justin Bonomo, and Anthony Zinno. David 'Bakes' Baker can climb within a single point of Fox if he wins. Joe Cada and Paul Volpe retain their respective top-fives positions but will need to make another deep run soon to hold ground against the charge behind them. Top 10 2018 WSOP Player Of The Year Points Thru 6/16 Name Points 1 Elio Fox 2,010.14 2 John Hennigan 1,727.27 3 Joe Cada 1,692.71 4 Paul Volpe 1,671.30 5 Ryan Bambrick 1,431.46 6 Julien Martini 1,338.82 7 Arne Kern 1,332.47 8 Nick Petrangelo 1,269.75 9 Roberly Felicio 1,264.46 10 Craig Varnell 1,194.63  
  3. Friday was a three-bracelet day at the 2018 World Series of Poker. One player took home his fifth piece of WSOP jewellery, while two players claimed their first gold. There’s plenty of other things to tell you about too, including Day 1 of the $50K Players Championship. For that, and a lot more, here’s a recap of June 15’s action. John Hennigan Wins Fifth Bracelet, Takes Down $10K HORSE There is now officially a new member of the five-bracelet club. It almost happened on Thursday night, when then four-time bracelet winner John Hennigan and two-time bracelet winner David ‘Bakes’ Baker ended Day 3 of Event #27: $10,000 HORSE Championship heads-up, with Hennigan holding a dominating chip lead. After one level of play on Friday, Hennigan finished the job. It all ended in a Limit Hold’em hand, when Baker was all-in with ace-six off versus Hennigan’s jack-three off. A three hit the flop, and Baker couldn’t catch up. Hennigan wins $414,692 for his efforts, as well as the fifth bracelet, while Baker banked $256,297. Will Johnny World focus all his attention on capturing bracelet no.6 now? "We'll see what happens,” he said afterwards. “I’m not too preoccupied with it, but five does feel better than four.” Final Table Results: John Hennigan - $414,692 David "Bakes" Baker - $256,297 Lee Salem - $179,216 Iraj Parvizi - $127,724 Randy Ohel - $92,808 Albert Daher - $68,783 Daniel Zack - $52,016 Michael Noori - $40,155 Michael Addamo Wins First Bracelet in The Marathon ($653,581) Australia’s Michael Addamo has long been a beast on the poker tables, but after Friday he can now call himself a WSOP bracelet winner too. [caption id="attachment_619563" align="aligncenter" width="635"] Bracelet #1 for Michael Addamo[/caption] Addamo, who moved to Thailand for online poker after law changes in his home country prevented him from playing, overcame a tough final table in Event #24: $2,620 The Marathon No-Limit Hold’em, one which included 2014 WSOP Main Event champ Martin Jacobson (5th), bracelet winner and WPT champ Taylor ‘taypaur’ Paur (4th), and Belgium’s Bart Lybaert (3rd). It was American recreational player Mark Sleet who Addamo met heads-up, and he was complimentary of Sleet’s game. “He was mixing it up, trying to put me to the test, like opening big sizes, doing all sorts of different things, trying to get me off my normal game. I think I adjusted ok but yeah, who knows,” Addamo said. Holding a big chip lead, the final hand saw all the money go in on a ten-high flop. Addamo had top pair, and Sleet had two overs and a flush draw which couldn’t hit on the turn or river. The 1,637 total runners were down to nine at the beginning of the day, and the first to depart from the final table were Ihar Soika, Cate Hall, Anton Morgenstern, and Ying Chan. Final Table Results: Michael Addamo - $653,581 Mark Sleet - $403,870 Bart Lybaert - $290,315 Taylor Paur - $210,995 Martin Jacobson - $155,062 Ying Chan - $115,244 Anton Morgenstern - $86,631 Cate Hall - $65,875 Ihar Soika - $50,678 Hahn Tran’s the Man, Wins First Bracelet in $1,500 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw The second new bracelet winner of the day was Austria’s Hahn Tran, who claimed victory in Event #29: $1,500 Limit 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw for $117,282. [caption id="attachment_619564" align="aligncenter" width="636"] Hahn Tran Captures his First Bracelet[/caption] Tran came into Friday’s final table with the chip lead, but it was by no means a smooth ride to the title. The chip lead swung around the table multiple times, but five eliminations later Tran was heads-up against Oscar Johansson. Having whittled Johansson down to just three bets, Johansson tabled a nine-eight but Tran had that beat with a nine-six. Three-time bracelet winner Brian Hastings fell in fifth, while David Prociak couldn’t capture his second bracelet, finishing in third. “I’ve come here for eight years but I don’t play many tournaments, I’m more of a cash game player,” Tran said once the win was locked up. “I play cash games in 2-7 and I’m very excited. This is one of my favourite games. I’m just here for vacation, have fun with my friends, and party!” Final Table Results: Hanh Tran - $117,282 Oscar Johansson - $72,471 David Prociak - $46,729 Cody Wagner - $30,926 Brian Hastings - $21,021 Yong Wang - $14,687 Jared Bleznick - $10,555 Gal Yifrach Leads Final Three in $3K Six-Max It seems like a lot of tournaments this year are going longer than expected. The final table of Event 28: $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed was scheduled to finish Friday night, but with three players still in play was paused and will resume on Saturday. Gal Yifrach holds the chip lead, with 6,965,000 to James Mackey’s 3,100,000 and Gary Hasson’s 1,960,000. They’ll return at 12pm Saturday with blinds at 60,000/120,000. Five-time bracelet winner Jason Mercier was among the early exits today, while Tony Dunst bowed out in 13th. another bracelet winner looking for more jewelry, lost with eights versus ace-king to go out in 13th place. Anatoly Filatov, Luiz Duarte, Yorane Kerignard, Ben Palmer (7th), and Ana Marquez (6th) also exited. Check back tomorrow to find out who wins the bracelet and the $461,798 first-place prize. They’re all guaranteed $193,716. Day 2 Takes $1,500 PLO Down to 13 Event #30: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha has just 13 of the 799 players remaining, and will play down to a champ on Saturday. Ryan Bambrick holds the overnight chip lead, with double the amount of his closest competitor, Phil Riley. On the other end of the chip counts, Lexy Gavin and Victor Ramdin are the most at risk. Throughout the day this one lost the likes of Ryan Riess, Dutch Boyd, Darryll Fish, Thomas Taylor, Scott Davies, Rob Salaburu, and Scott Clements. There’s $217,123 and the coveted WSOP bracelet awaiting the winner, while all 13 players are guaranteed $9,173 overnight. Play resumes at 12pm Saturday. Final 13 Chip Counts: Ryan Bambrick - 1,727,000 Phil Riley - 864,000 Sampo Ryynanen - 633,000 Jared Ingles - 575,000 Tim McDermott - 527,000 Randy White - 437,000 Jody Fayant - 326,000 Pushpinder Singh - 266,000 George Xu - 180,000 Jeanmarc Thomas - 165,000 Danny Woolard - 165,000 Victor Ramdin - 84,000 Lexy Gavin - 80,000 Ferguson and Lisandro Headline $11,500 Seven Card Stud Finale There are a whole lotta bracelets between the nine final table players in Event #31: $1,500 Seven Card Stud. One time bracelet winner Michael Moore (not the documentary filmmaker) holds the chip lead, but he’s followed by six-time bracelet winners Chris Ferguson and Jeff Lisandro, both on the hunt for the elusive seventh bracelet. The final table is even more star-studded with legendary music producer Steve Albini returning tomorrow fifth in chips. Albini is arguably most famous for his work with Nirvana and Pixies. And rounding out the unofficial final table is two-time bracelet winner Frankie O’Dell. The bubble burst at 47 players today, and some of those who failed to make the cash include Barbara Enright, Scott Bohlman, Carol Fuchs, Brandon Shack-Harris, Tom McEvoy and Cory Zeidman. Once they were in the money, we lost the likes of Ben Yu (45th - $2,250), Shirley Rosario (40th - $2,398), Dzmitry Urbanovich (37th - $2,398), Kevin Ioacofano (35th - $2,398), Perry Friedman (21st - $2,982), Jameson Painter (14th - $4,155), and Bertrand "ElkY" Grospellier (11th - $5,110). The guaranteed payout right now is $6,451, but there’s $105,629 up top. Play resumes at 2pm Saturday. Final Table Chip Counts: Michael Moore - 485,000 Chris Ferguson - 325,000 Jeff Lisandro - 291,000 Paul Sexton - 276,000 Steven Albini - 270,000 Katherine Fleck - 226,000 Esther Rossi - 186,000 Stephen Rivers - 143,000 Frankie O'Dell - 74,000 The $50K Poker Players Championship Begins, Benny Glaser Leads After Day 1 When people predict success for players prior to the WSOP, Benny Glaser is always a name that comes up. The three-time bracelet winner has proved today why he’s thought so highly of in the mixed-game world, bagging up the Day 1 chip lead in Event #33: $50,000 Poker Players Championship. There were 77 entries today, and Glaser ended up with 574,900. He’s most closely followed by Anthony Zinno (493,200), Brian Rast (473,900), James Obst (450,100), and John Hennigan (449,000), the latter of which jumped straight into this event having won the $10K H.O.R.S.E. earlier in the day. There are 14 bracelets between that top five. Only three players failed to make it through the day (Scott Seiver, Frank Kassela, and Kristijonas Andrulis) as we ended with 74 players. It’s very early days in this one, with a long road ahead. Registration is still open for another four levels tomorrow, when action resumes at 2pm. Top 10 Chip Counts: Benny Glaser - 574,900 Anthony Zinno - 493,200 Brian Rast - 473,900 James Obst - 450,100 John Hennigan - 449,000 Naseem Salem - 433,400 Alexander Kostritsyn - 415,600 Shaun Deeb - 394,200 Paul Volpe - 390,800 David "ODB" Baker - 387,400 Seniors Event Breaks Records on Day 1 Event #33: $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship attracted a massive 5,919 field, breaking records for this event and making this the largest single Day 1 in WSOP history. When the bags were brought out for the end of Day 1, 934 players remained. Kevin O’Donnell holds the overnight chip lead, while Neil Blumenfield (134,000), Dave Peterson (123,000), Andrei Konopilko (120,000), Mitchell Garshofsky (73,300), Carol Fuchs (36,800), and Jan-Peter Jachtmann (57,200) will all return. Greg Raymer, Gregg Markow, Victor Ramdin, Mike Sexton, Kathy Liebert, Ivo Donev and Marcel Luske were among the 5,000 eliminated players today. This one kicks off again at 11am on Saturday. You’ll find the top 10 stacks below. Kevin O'Donnell - 172,100 Christopher Ocksrider - 157,000 Frank Cupello - 128,300 David Peterson - 123,100 Michael Lang - 121,000 Andrei Konopelko - 120,000 James Passas - 118,300 Frank Berry - 106,000 Neil Blumenfield - 104,400 Tommy Townsend - 104,000 Day 1C of THE GIANT Wraps Up A quick note on Day 1C of Event #6: $365 GIANT No-Limit Hold’em. Mathieu Philbert of France bagged the chip lead, amassing an impressive 1,940,000. Phil Laak, Benjamin Yu, Kathy Liebert and Canada's Calen McNeil. Sandeep Vasudevan, Bradley Butcher and Allen Kessler all tried but failed to make it through. There are two more Day 1 flights scheduled for the next two Fridays before all survivors merge for Day 2 on June 30. Day 1C Top 10 Stacks: Mathieu Philbert - 1,940,000 Kevin Ninkovich - 1,505,000 Arkadiy Tsinis - 1,495,000 Terry Kelley - 1,035,000 Artan Dedusha - 1,025,000 Jett Blackwell - 975,000 Alexander Allegranza - 875,000 Nipun Java - 872,000 Jeremy Brown - 820,000 Peter Eichhardt - 780,000
  4. Things are really heating up now in one of the most prestigious events at the 2018 World Series of Poker. Just 12 players remain in the $50K Poker Players Championship, and it’s a former two-time winner who bagged up the chip lead. Meanwhile, a ten-time bracelet winning legend bagged a top five stack. Sunday’s WSOP action also the record-breaking Seniors Event reach a final table, while two events played through Day 1 flights. Here’s all the news from Sunday June 18 at the WSOP. Michael Mizrachi Leads $50K Championship; Ivey, Smith, Glaser, Hennigan Still In It’s set to be a very exciting day at the tables tomorrow, as a tournament with one of the most coveted bracelets on offer edges closer towards a final table. Event #33: $50,000 Poker Players Championship has seen its 87-strong field chopped down to just 12, and it’s two-time winner Michael Mizrachi who again holds the overnight chip lead, having ended Day 2 as chip leader too. [caption id="attachment_619602" align="aligncenter" width="680"] Could Mizrachi Win It a Third Time?[/caption] Mizrachi ended play with 4,232,000, and he’s most closely followed by Mike Leah with 3,134,000, and Aaron Katz with 2,480,000. The rest of the field is a who’s who of the game, with ten-time bracelet winner Phil Ivey finishing with the fourth biggest stack (2,146,000). Three-time bracelet winner Benny Glaser (1,967,000) is still in the hunt, while Dan Smith seeks his first bracelet (1,816,000). Five-time bracelet winner John Hennigan is looking for his second bracelet of the summer (1,458,000), while Greg Mueller, Brian Rast, Chris Vitch, and Shaun Deeb are all hoping to add more WSOP jewellery to their collections. At the bottom of the counts is Jean-Robert Bellande, who is in bad shape with just 213,000. They’re all in the money though, with 14 players paid and Mike Gorodinsky the unfortunate bubble boy. He ran pocket kings into pocket aces to cooler his way out. Everyone in this tournament is a notable name, but a few other bust-outs they saw today include Jason Mercier (28th), Daniel Negreanu (26th), and defending champion Elior Sion (23rd). There’s $1,239,126 for the champ, as well as the prestige and the bracelet. The guaranteed pay-out right now is $88,627, with action set to resume at 2pm Monday. Full Chip Counts: Michael Mizrachi - 4,232,000 Mike Leah - 3,134,000 Aaron Katz - 2,480,000 Phil Ivey - 2,146,000 Benny Glaser - 1,967,000 Dan Smith - 1,816,000 John Hennigan - 1,458,000 Greg Mueller - 1,439,000 Brian Rast - 1,167,000 Chris Vitch - 1,160,000 Shaun Deeb - 533,000 Jean-Robert Bellande - 213,000 Final Table Set in Seniors Event Event #34: $1,000 Seniors No-Limit Hold'em Championship broke records for the largest ever Day 1 in history back on Friday. Now, after Day 3, just eight of the 5,919-strong field remain. It’s final table time. Gary Friedlander is in pole position coming in, having bagged a chip lead with 8,080,000. He’s followed by Bill Stabler (6,085,000) and Matthew Davis (6,010,000). Day 3 began with 101 players returning for their shot at the bracelet and the massive $662,983 first-place prize. All eight have locked up $76,204 for their efforts, and they’ll return at 11am Monday to play down to a champ. Final Table Chip Counts: Gary Friedlander - 8,080,000 Bill Stabler - 6,085,000 Matthew Davis - 6,010,000 Bill Bennett - 2,735,000 Frank Berry - 2,090,000 Rachel Delatorre - 1,645,000 Joseph Schulman - 1,510,000 Scott Hamilton-Hill - 1,455,000 Big Names Out for Double Stack Day 1B Event #34: $1,000 Double Stack No-Limit Hold’em chalked up its Day 1B flight on Sunday, with a massive 3,314 entries, which when added to the Day 1A field makes 5,700 total entries. Just 1,285 of them would make it through both flights, and today it was Mike Tayakama who bagged up the most. He ended with 177,400, while there were many notable survivors including bracelet winners Loni Harwood (23,000), Chris Moorman (67,200), Niall Farrell (58,000), Bertrand Grospellier (20,700), and Chris Ferguson (12,200). Others to advance include Giuseppe Pantaleo (131,600), Anatoly Filatov (9,500), Harry Lodge (6,500), Manig Loeser (28,700), and Ari Engel (38,800). Day 2 kicks off at 12pm Monday, with only 855 of them making the money. A min-cash will be worth $1,500, while the eventual champ will get $644,224. Top 10 Stacks: Mike Takayama - 177,400 Eimantas Adomavicius - 168,500 Vinny Pahuja - 167,100 Fabrizzo Dagostino - 164,200 Chahn Jung - 147,500 Pablo Fernandez - 146,500 Rulah Divine - 145,100 Cher Vang - 139,700 Benjamin Jones - 132,400 Giuseppe Pantaleo - 131,600 Another Mizrachi Bags Big While his brother Michael is chip-leading the $50K, Robert Mizrachi was doing good work himself over in Event #35: $1,500 Mixed Omaha. The tournament, which rotates between Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better, and Big O (5-Card PLO/8), got 751 total entries. But now, with Day 2 in the books, there are 31 players remaining. Mizrachi almost had the overnight chip lead, but in the last few hands of the night his 439,000 was pipped to the post by James Alexander (466,500) and Gabriel Ramos (452,000). Ryan Hughes (276,000), Jon Turner (218,000), Carol Fuchs (215,000), Mark Gregorich (176,500), and Bart Hanson (35,000) will also be returning Monday. The same can’t be said for this lot, who crashed out today: Martin Staszko (103rd - $2,258), Andrew Barber (84th - $2,444), Calen McNeil (71st - $2,444), Max Pescatori (69th - $2,631), Barry Greenstein (53rd - $3,256), Erik Seidel (43rd - $3,741) and Phil Hellmuth (35th - $5,252). Prior to the bubble bursting, Dan Heimiller, Connor Drinan, Chris Ferguson, and Stephen Chidwick were all eliminated. Play continues at 2pm Monday, and the plan is to play down to a winner, who will receive $211,781. Top 10 Stacks: James Alexander - 466,500 Gabriel Ramos - 452,000 Robert Mizrachi - 439,000 Eddie Blumenthal - 343,500 Chip Jett - 292,500 Christopher Carey - 290,000 Ryan Hughes - 276,000 Robert Jackson - 249,500 Jon Turner - 218,000 Carol Fuchs - 215,000 Super Seniors Out For Day 1 If you were 60 or over and busted out of the Seniors Event today, chances are you went and hopped straight into Event #36: $1,000 Super Seniors No-Limit Hold’em. This one got a massive field of 2,191 runners today. Ten levels later and just 347 remain. Clifford Matthews can call himself chip leader overnight with 137,900, but Henri Bisson isn’t far behind with 130,000. A few notables we lost today include Marcel Luske, TJ Cloutier, Neil Bluminfield and Dan Harrington. Action resumes at 11am Monday, with only 329 players making the money ($1,500 min cash). Top 10 Stacks: Clifford Mathews - 137,900 Henri Bisson - 130,000 Steven Wenrich - 122,300 Charles Zis - 109,300 Jeff Heiberg - 103,600 Tim Ebenhoeh - 95,800 Michael Rice - 93,300 Donald Clause - 90,900 Jeffrey Weber - 90,600 Alan Marks - 86,100 PLO Giant Continues On Sunday, there was also another starting flight in Event #11: $365 PLO GIANT Pot-Limit Omaha. The flight attracted 429 runners, but only 23 of those will proceed to Day 2. Tim Andrew leads with 1,375,000 after 21 20-minute levels. Other to advance include Yoni Basin (1,130,000), Russell Sartin (1,025,000), Layne Flack, (825,000), Steve Gagliano (795,000), Sandeep Pulusani(670,000) and Joon Park (495,000). Some of those who made the cash but couldn’t find a big were Thomas Taylor (31st - $861), Ylon Schwartz (37th - $750), Kevin MacPhee (45th - $750), Mikhail Semin (55th - $605), Chris Back (57th - $605), Danny Wong (64th - $560), and Dan Zack (65th - $560). There will be another starting flight next week. Top 10 Day 1C Stacks: Tim Andrew - 1,375,000 Yoni Basin - 1,130,000 Russell Sartin - 1,025,000 Layne Flack - 825,000 Steve Gagliano - 795,000 Sandeep Pulusani - 670,000 Joon Park - 495,000 Robert Covert - 335,000 Jeff Miller - 270,000 Greg Aversa - 97,000
  5. The race for WSOP Player of the Year is at a peak with the Main Event starting today. Last week, Shaun Deeb claimed top honors thanks to his win in the $25,000 Pot Limit Omaha High Roller. Deeb is in second-place and in his former throne is John Hennigan. Hennigan led the race a few weeks ago when he peaked with a $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. bracelet and runner-up honors in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship. Mixed games are Hennigan's primary strength and he flexed a new muscle to go over 3,000 total POY points. The five-time bracelet winner finished seventh in the $10,000 Razz and final two-tabled the $10,000 Limit Hold'em. Over the weekend, Hennigan added a 16th place finish in the $3,200 WSOP.com Online High Roller to his list of cashes. Hennigan traveled to the payout desk nine times so far this summer and is yet to cash in the same game twice. Since June 2, Hennigan finishes in events are no worse than 16th place. Deeb trails Hennigan by nearly 330 points and needs to reach another final table to pass 'Johnny World.' Tied for second on the 2018 cashes list with 12, Deeb joined two small No Limit scores to his total. A min-cash in the $1,000 Super Turbo Bounty and $1,000 Online bracelet event added some points but not enough to be within immediate striking distance of Hennigan. $1,500 Omaha Hi-Lo gold medalist Julien Martini surges up to third place. Seven cashes and two final tables equals 2,096.31 for the highest ranking European. Martini's second final table of the summer came in the $10,000 Razz where he laddered to third place and $134,587. There is a gap of close to 700 points between Martini and Deeb, making the race a two-player affair at this stage. Eric Baldwin's online background displayed itself with a cash in both the $1,000 and $3,200 bracelet events. Baldwin cashed in both and is up to eight scores on the summer. Mike Leah made the biggest move from players not previously in the top-10. Leah's seventh and eight cashes of the WSOP came in consecutive $10,000 events. A seventh-place spot in the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha and fourth-place bid in the $10,000 Razz bring him over 2,000 points. Elio Fox's place on the podium is at an end. The $10,000 Super Turbo Bounty bracelet winner has not cashed at the WSOP since June 9 in the Millionaire Maker. Paul Volpe hangs in the top-10 thanks to his cash $10,000 Razz. Scott Bohlman, Justin Liberto, and Anthony Zinno all welcome themselves to the top-10 for the first time all summer. Bohlman won his first bracelet on June 21 in the $2,500 Big Bet Mix and supplemented the hardware with sixth place in the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha. Fifth place in the Millionaire Maker is Liberto's crowning achievement of his WSOP campaign and he now has two final tables to his name in 2018. Liberto fell in seventh in the $3,200 Online High Roller for $37,356. Zinno also cashed in the two online events and has three online cashes this summer including third-place in the $565 Pot Limit Omaha. His mixed game magic includes a bronze medal from the $10,000 Limit Hold'em Championship. Zinno is up to nine cashes this summer. Top 10 2018 WSOP Player Of The Year Points Thru 7/2 Position Name Points 1 John Hennigan 3,130.76 2 Shaun Deeb 2,769.11 3 Julien Martini 2,096.31 4 Eric Baldwin 2,054.58 5 Mike Leah 2,039.80 6 Elio Fox 2,010.14 7 Paul Volpe 1,935.94 8 Scott Bohlman 1,832.07 9 Justin Liberto 1,786.20 10 Anthony Zinno 1,764.42
  6. Hosted by PocketFives President and Editor in Chief Lance Bradley and poker writer Matt Clark, The Fives runs each week and covers the latest poker news, preview upcoming events, and debate the hottest topics in poker. Listen in this week as Lance Bradley and Matt Clark discuss Michael Mizrachi's third Poker Players Championship victory and whether or not that guarantees him a place in the Poker Hall of Fame once he's eligible. They also wax poetically about John Hennigan and whether or not the poker world doesn't appreciate the five-time bracelet winner enough. They wrap up the episode by getting into the details of the Alex Foxen-Kristen Bicknell win at the Venetian and the controversy that followed. DOWNLOAD THIS EPISODE IN ITUNES GET THIS EPISODE ON STITCHER GET THIS EPISODE ON GOOGLE PLAY
  7. One of the most prestigious bracelets of the 2018 World Series of Poker was awarded today, and it went to a man who has now won the event an unprecedented three times. Tuesday also saw one other bracelet handed out. It was almost a three-bracelet day, but two players ended the Super Seniors event heads-up, so we’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find who will take down their first WSOP gold. Here’s all the news from June 19. Michael Mizrachi Wins $50K PPC for a Third Time Maybe it was on the cards all the way back on Day 2. Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mizrachi bagged the chip lead that night in Event #33: $50,000 Poker Players Championship, and then finished Day 3 as the chip leader too. He then had by far the biggest stack after Day 4, entering Tuesday’s final table in pole position. Now, The Grinder is a four-time bracelet winner, a three-time PPC champion, and $1,239,126 richer. "It's quite an accomplishment," Mizrachi said after the victory. "To win the first one was amazing. The second one was great. The third one is unheard of.” Mizrachi’s journey through this final table was almost entirely smooth sailing, despite such a tricky line-up. "I never had big swings this whole tournament," he admitted. "All the cards went my way. I hit a bunch of hands. Everything went my way. I just won every pot.” Aaron Katz was the first to fall today, when his top pair was outdrawn by Benny Glaser’s bottom pair and backdoor flush draw. Glaser and Mike Leah remained the short stacks during five-handed play, and ultimately Glaser would exit in fifth. He lost a large chunk of his stack in a stud hand, when he made a value bet with two pair on seventh street only for John Hennigan to call with a better two pair. Leah then felted Glaser a little later in a 2-7 hand. Leah managed a double up shortly after, but that couldn’t prevent him from finishing in fourth, busting to Mizrachi in a PLO pot. Dan Smith would then depart in a limit hold’em hand. Smith had an open-ended straight draw to Hennigan’s ace-high with two overs, but the board bricked for Smith. Hennigan, a former PPC winner, lost two big 2-7 hands to Mizrachi right off the bat in heads-up play. It all ended in NLHE, with Hennigan shoving a flop with an open-ender and Grinder calling with a pair and flush draw which hit on the turn. A huge crowd then burst onto the stage to congratulate your 2018 $50K PPC champion, Michael Mizrachi. Final Table Results: Michael Mizrachi - $1,239,126 John Hennigan - $765,837 Dan Smith - $521,782 Mike Leah - $364,197 Benny Glaser - $260,578 Aaron Katz - $191,234 China’s Yueqi Zhu Finishes the Job in $1,500 Mixed Omaha Only three players returned Tuesday in Event #35: $1,500 Mixed Omaha, and Yueqi Zhu of China had a dominating lead with almost 80% of the chips in play. [caption id="attachment_619627" align="aligncenter" width="628"] Yueqi Zhu Takes It Down[/caption] It didn’t take long for Zhu to seal the deal today and win his first WSOP bracelet. The only player who already had a bracelet, Carol Fuchs, went out in third, followed by a brief heads-up match versus Gabriel Ramos. Zhu had a 10:1 advantage, but Ramos almost doubled up when his top set was all-in versus Zhu’s wrap in a PLO-8 hand. Zhu’s draw then completed to give him the win. After more than 12 years of grinding at the WSOP and some 70 cashes, including a second-place finish back in 2006, Zhu is now a bracelet winner and $211,781 richer. Final Table Results: Yueqi Zhu - $211,781 Gabriel Ramos - $130,850 Carol Fuchs - $89,488 Matthew Gregoire - $62,226 Jon Turner - $44,007 Peter Neff - $31,662 Ryan Hughes - $23,182 20 Remain in Double Stack Day 3 of Event #34: $1,000 Double Stack No Limit Hold’em played out today, taking the field from 162 (of 5,700 total) down to just 20. Keith Ferrera holds the overnight lead with a stack of 7,550,000, more than 2 million in chips more than the closest competitor, Tomas Teran Paredes (5,050,000). Robert Peacock completes the top three stacks with 4,500,000. Other notables returning tomorrow include Matt Stout (3,920,000), Joshua Turner (3,905,000), Pfizer Jordan (2,450,000), Pablo Fernandez (1,760,000), Ramin Hajiyev (1,420,000) and WSOP bracelet winner Andrey Zaichenko (1,205,000). Throughout the course of action we lost the likes of Jake Bazeley (141st place), WSOP bracelet winners Phil Hui (107th place), Anthony Spinella (101st place), Nipun Java (87th place) and Tony Dunst (69th place), as well as Maria Lampropulos (79th place), Isaac Baron (66th place), Mike Del Vecchio (51st place) and Matt Berkey (24th place). All 20 are guaranteed a $22,122 payday, but it’s the $644,224 first-place prize they’re really after. Action resumes at 12pm Wednesday. Top 10 Stacks: Keith Ferrera - 7,550,000 Tomas Teran Paredes - 5,050,000 Robert Peacock - 4,500,000 James Ostrowski - 3,985,000 Matt Stout - 3,920,000 Joshua Turner - 3,905,000 Steven Tymms - 3,575,000 Daniel Eichhorn - 3,300,000 Don Johnson - 2,690,000 Pfizer Jordan - 2,450,000 Two Set to Return to Battle for Super Seniors Action ended heads-up after Day 3 of the Event #36: $1,000 Super Seniors No-Limit Hold’em, with Robert Beach holding a massive chip lead over Farhintaj Bonyadi. Beach will return tomorrow with 9,010,000 to Bonyadj’s 1,975,000. The runner-up will receive $192,397, while the winner will bank $311,451. Action kicks back off at 11am tomorrow, with blinds at 50K/100K. Check back tomorrow to find out if Beach can get the job done. Stud Championship Reaches Final Table A final table has been set in Event #38: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship. With eight players of the 83-strong field left, it’s Yaniv Birman who enters the finale as chip leader. Birman bagged up 958,000 - 40 big bets, and he’s followed by multiple bracelet winner Jesse Martin (916,000). Mixed game beasts Ben Yu (559,000), James Obst (216,000), and Matt Grapenthien (507,000) will also return tomorrow. Throughout the day we lost the likes of Daniel Negreanu, Jordan Siegel, Michael McKenna, Perry Friedman and Todd Brunson. All eight have locked up $23,443, while there’s $236,238 up top. Play kicks back off at 2pm Wednesday. Final Table Stacks: Yaniv Birman - 958,000 Jesse Martin - 916,000 Ben Yu - 559,000 Matt Grapenthien - 507,000 Lee Salem - 473,000 Joseph Cappello - 360,000 James Obst - 216,000 Lars Gronning - 168,000 First Round in $1,500 SHOOTOUT Done Event #39: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em SHOOTOUT kicked off today, with 908 runners hoping to win their first table in order to proceed. 100 players did just that, and there are some big names amongst them. Phil Hellmuth took down his table to become one of the first Day 2 players, defeating the likes of Heidi May and Maurice Hawkins. Other notables to advance include reigning WSOP Main Event Champion Scott Blumstein, last year's runner-up in this event Thomas Boivin, as well as Steven Wolansky, Rep Porter, 2014 Main Event Champion Martin Jacobson, Matthew Waxman, Georgios Sotiropoulos, Arkadiy Tsinis, Justin Liberto, and William Kakon. Where there are survivors there must be casualties. Some of those who couldn’t make it through today include Ryan Riess, Qui Nguyen, Joe Cada, Erik Seidel, Joe McKeehen, Brian Yoon, Mark Radoja, Michael Gagliano, Barny Boatman, Humberto Brenes, Annette Obrestad, Niall Farrell, Taylor Paur, Chris Moorman, John Racener, Brian Hastings, David Peters, Calvin Anderson, Frank Kassela, Jennifer Tilly and Jeff Madsen. Round 2 begins at 12pm Wednesday. There’s $236,498 for the eventual champ, while all 100 players have now won $5,227. Big Bets All Round The second new event to begin on Tuesday was Event #40: $2,500 Mixed Big Bet. 205 players took their shot, but after ten levels just 51 remain. Naoya Kihara holds the overnight chip lead with 119,700, followed by Dario Sammartino with 117,000. Plenty of other big names have advanced, including the red-hot John Hennigan (111,850), fresh from his $50K runner-up finish. Six-time bracelet winner Jeff Lisandro also had a good day, chip leading for much of it before ending with 90,000. Andrew Kelsall (66,200), Mike Matusow (72,300), Eli Elezra (70,000), David "ODB" Baker (41,075), Barry Greenstein (27,375), and Brian Rast (23,150) also advanced. Play resumes at 2pm Wednesday with 31 players making the money. A min-cash is worth $3,777, while there’s $122,138 for the champ. Top 10 Stacks: Naoya Kihara - 119,700 Dario Sammartino - 117,650 Scott Bohlman - 114,000 John Hennigan - 111,850 Daniel Harmetz - 100,000 Jeff Lisandro - 90,000 John Racener - 88,400 Brandon Shack-Harris - 84,100 Stuart Rutter - 77,250 Aaron Rogers - 73,325 Tomorrow’s Action (June 20) There are two new events ready to get going on Wednesday. First up is Event #41: $1,500 Limit Hold’em, kicking off at 11am. However, arguably the more exciting of the two is Event #42: $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed High Roller, which begins at 3pm. James Calderaro took that one down last year, defeating a final table that included the likes of Dario Sammartino, Dan Smith, and Ben Tollerene to claim the $1,289,074 winner’s prize.
  8. The World Series of Poker Player of the Year race featured a new leader almost every week for the duration of the series. Elio Fox jumped to an early lead thanks to his bracelet win and runner-up finish in the $100,000 High Roller all within in the first week. By the middle of June, Fox's epic first week was an afterthought. Post-lim events played a large role in how the final leaderboard shook out. The most competitive race in WSOP history ended (for now) with one of the three-multi bracelet winners from 2018 in front. Shaun Deeb played an incredible amount of volume and is 90 percent of the way toward accomplishing one of his major career goals. Deeb shipped the $10,000 Six-Max a few days after making Day 6 of the Main Event and placing 105th. The bracelet is the second for Deeb this summer and the fourth of his career. Deeb's final haul from the 2018 WSOP includes two bracelets, three final tables, and 16 cashes. 2017 Player of the Year Chris Ferguson is the only player who cashed more times than Deeb and he racked up 17 to lead the category for the second straight year. Second in cashes and second in POY is $50,000 High Roller winner Ben Yu. Deeb defeated Yu heads up in the $25,000 PLO and leads him in POY by a little under 600 points. Yu earned a career-best $1.65 million for his third bracelet win. A few days earlier, Yu took fourth in the DoubleStack Turbo and overall, he concluded his WSOP campaign with four top-four finishes. Yu and Deeb finished in 11th and 12th place, respectively, on the overall WSOP earnings list. The only players ahead of them were Main Event final tablists or a player who cashed in the Big One for One Drop with the exception of one Nick Petrangelo, who won the $100,000 High Roller and took third in the $50,000 edition won by Yu. The player of the moment and third on the POY list is Joe Cada. Cada opened the 2018 summer with a win in the $3,000 Shootout and steadily accumulated from there toward a stellar final two weeks. The 2009 Main Event champion took fifth in his bid at a second title. Following the disappointing finish, Cada jumped in the $1,500 Closer and won the title along with his fourth bracelet in only two days of play. Cada earned a combined $2.7 for the two scores and certified himself a place in the annals of WSOP runs. John Hennigan led the POY race midway through the summer. Hennigan's second-place finish in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship and win in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E was never replicated but he did wind up with 12 cashes in total. Those 12 cashes are 12 more than Hennigan collected in 2017. Hennigan was awarded with a Poker Hall of Fame induction during the Main Event to cap off his best year at the series. Scott Bohlman and Paul Volpe sit in the middle of the 2018 class. Bohlman came close twice to being the first multi-bracelet winner of the summer but settled for second in the $10,000 Stud Hi-Lo and third in the $3,000 PLO Six-Max. Volpe faced off heads up against Deeb in the $10,000 Six-Max and earned silver for his Main Event post-lim. 'The Main Event' made Day 5 of his nicknamed tournament and set a record with eight cashes in events with a $10,000 buy-in or higher. The No Limit players carved out space in the top-10 as done by Eric Baldwin and Justin Liberto. Between the two players, they went to the payout cage 25 times and all but two of their ventures were for events that didn't have NLH in the title. Heavy-hitters Mike Leah and Anthony Zinno round out the important part of the leaderboard. Neither player added a second bracelet despite having five final tables between them to close another victory out. Zinno made up the trophy difference at The Venetian where he won the CardPlayer $5,000 event for $466,670 to wrap up his summer schedule. The race concludes on November 2 at WSOP Europe at King's Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic. Deeb confirmed on the Poker Life Podcast he would be in attendance at it remains to be seen who from the top-10 will join him. Top 10 2018 WSOP Player Of The Year Points Position Name Points 1 Shaun Deeb 4,334.06 2 Ben Yu 3,746.04 3 Joe Cada 3,531.86 4 John Hennigan 3,499.91 5 Scott Bohlman 3,155.88 6 Paul Volpe 2,859.76 7 Eric Baldwin 2,516.30 8 Justin Liberto 2,459.84 9 Mike Leah 2,354.13 10 Anthony Zinno 2,330.37
  9. 5 Things is a column, written by PocketFives President and Editor in Chief Lance Bradley, that covers pressing topics and current events in the poker world today. It appears periodically at PocketFives.com. The final table of the $50,000 Poker Players Championship at the 2018 World Series of Poker had almost everything you'd want from that event. Michael Mizrachi going for an almost unbelievable third PPC title in nine years. John Hennigan looking to become the third player to win multi PPC titles. Dan Smith going for his first WSOP bracelet. The 2018 PPC saw just 87 players - the second lowest turnout in the history of the event and a far cry from the all-time high of 148. To the mixed game players who circle the dates of this event on the calendar every year, the Poker Players Championship is a big deal. Yet to those same players, it simply felt more like Event #33 and seemingly no more important or worth celebrating more than Event #8 ($2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball) or Event #45 ($1,000 Big Blind Antes No Limite Hold'em 30 Minute Levels). It didn't unnoticed by one of the event's biggest advocates, David Baker. Baker, who plays the event every year, isn't wrong. Say what you will about former WSOP commissioner Jeffrey Pollack and his dubious place in poker history, but he understood what the PPC was - a significant event on the calendar and an opportunity for the WSOP to celebrate the best players in the game. Following the passing of Chip Reese, the first player to ever win the event, the WSOP created the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy and awarded it, along with the bracelet, to the winner of the event. In 2006, the first year after Reese's death, players were invited to be part of the unveiling of the trophy along with a special "Shuffle Up and Deal". Tables were set up to give players more space and give fans watching on the rail the understanding that this wasn't just another tournament. This year there was nothing like that and it's time that this event receives more celebration in the lead-up and more pomp and circumstance during the five days that it takes place each summer. Here are the Five Things the WSOP could do to give the Poker Players Championship its proper due. Opening Ceremony This seems like a low-cost no-brainer. The opening flights of the Main Event all have a special "Shuffle Up and Deal" announcement from a former champion or prominent player. There are nine former PPC Champions still with us. Having all of them on hand for the start of the tournament to welcome players and fans alike would add a special moment that only increases in importance each year. It also provides another opportunity to celebrate the first champ - Reese - and the trophy named for him. Fan Friendly Set Up Poker as a spectator sport struggles at the best of times. The ESPN mothership at the WSOP provides stadium seating and a big-time event feel, but the first four days of the event play out like any other event. Creating an area inside the Amazon Room specifically for this event and allowing fans on the rail to be able to walk on the outside the cordoned off area is a vast improvement over what the event has now and gives them better access to some of the game's best players. Special Felt The event is played at six-handed tables. Using the largest PPC field in history (148 in 2007 and 2008), that means 25 tables would be in play. Putting an event-specific felt on each of those tables would give the players the feeling that they're part of something special, not just another event. Choose a color other than green and it helps the fans on the rail understand that this event is different. Improved Live Stream Offering This time last year, the PPC wasn't livestreamed at all. PokerGO stepped up in a big, big way this year and gave fans not just the final table on PokerGO, but Day 4 coverage on Twitch. Let's take it even further for 2019 and livestream this tournament from the beginning. PokerGO producers would be able to choose which of poker's biggest stars - the ratings draws - were featured early and the fans benefit. It also allows viewers at home the chance to see the opening ceremony, the fan-friendly setup and the unique look and feel offered by the special felt. Find a Sponsor This is the hardest of the five by far, but if WSOP executives can make the first four items happen, the fifth one becomes easier. The Poker Players Championship presented by ... works so long as that sponsor not only puts money into the WSOP's coffers but adds value for the players as well. Even if it's $50,000 so that the winner gets a freeroll the next year, it's a start down a path many players have hoped poker would take for a long time.
  10. On Monday, the Poker Hall of Fame revealed their list of 10 finalists that will be considered for induction in 2018. After a public nomination process and vetting by the Poker Hall of Fame Governing Council the list of finalist have been deemed to fulfill the qualifications for induction. This year, the list of nominations include (in alphabetical order): Chris Bjorin David Chiu Mori Eskandani Bruno Fitoussi John Hennigan * Mike Matusow Chris Moneymaker David Oppenheim * Matt Savage Huckleberry Seed * First-time nominees The voting process is now turned over to the current 28-member Hall of Fame members as well as an 18-person “blue ribbon” panel of media members. These 46 voters will determine who will ultimately be inducted. The current criteria for consideration remain the same as in years past: - A player must have played poker against acknowledged top competition - Be at a minimum of 40 years old at time of nomination - Played for high stakes - Played consistently well, gaining the respect of peers - Stood the test of time - For Non-players, contributed to the overall growth and success of the game of poker, with indelible positive and lasting results Official ballots will be sent to those who are eligible to vote with a deadline of July 8 for their votes to be received by the WSOP Governing Council. Then, once all the votes have been counted, the official inductees will be announced to the public. On July 13, in Las Vegas as a part of the WSOP Main Event Final Table festivities, the two honored recipients will officially become part of the Hall of Fame during the ESPN broadcast. Career Highlights of Finalists Chris Bjorin - One of Sweden's most celebrated poker players, Bjorin is a two-time bracelet winner with over $5.7 million in career earnings. David Chiu - Hailing from China, Chiu had accumulated five WSOP gold bracelets and a World Poker Tour title. His over $8 million in lifetime earnings currently has him sitting just inside the top 100 on the All-Time Money list. Mori Eskandani - A one-time high-stakes player in the 1980's, Eskandani is now known as the head of Poker PROductions, the production company responsible for seminal poker shows including High Stakes Poker, Poker After Dark and, currently, producing the WSOP on ESPN. Bruno Fitoussi - Fitoussi is credited for the introduction of Texas Hold'em in his native country of France. With over $2.8 million in lifetime earnings, Fitoussi has a runner-up finish in the 2007 $50K Poker Players Championship on his resume as well as being recognized as a key individual in getting poker televised in France. John Hennigan - The 2014 WSOP Poker Players Championship winner, Hennigan has a total of five bracelets and over $8 million in career earnings. Hennigan is known for being exceptional at all of the variants of poker. Mike Matusow - A consistent presence in early iterations of televised poker, Matusow is a four-time bracelet winner with over $9.4 million in career earnings. Matusow won the NBC Heads-Up Championship and has made the final table of the WSOP Main Event twice. Chris Moneymaker - The man whose victory was the spark that ignited the poker boom in 2003, Chris Moneymaker is a WSOP Main Event Champion. "The Moneymaker effect" is the common phrase used when discussing the massive mainstream popularity that poker enjoyed in the early 2000's as well as the inspiration for a generation of poker players. Moneymaker has been a long-time ambassador for PokerStars and for poker in general. He has accumulated over $3.7 million in lifetime earnings. David Oppenheim - A Los Angeles cash game pro, Oppenheim is considered a pro's pro with the respect that can only come when one has mastered most of the games in poker. He currently has $1.8 million in lifetime tournament earnings. Matt Savage - One of the inaugural, founders of the Tournament Directors Association (TDA), Savage is the Executive Tour Director for the World Poker Tour. One of the most vocal and consistent voices for standardization of poker rules, Savage has a player-friends style that has for years continues to move the game forward. Huckleberry Seed - Seed is a four-time bracelet winner with over $7.6 million in career tournament earnings. The 1996 WSOP Main Event Champion also has a victory in the NBC Heads-Up Championship as well as the 2010 WSOP Tournament of Champions. Seed was a regular presence on televised poker during the poker boom.  
  11. 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
  12. Another opportunity to capture a gold bracelet arrives when the World Series of Poker Europe returns to the King’s Casino in Rozvadov from October 9 - November 2. The three-week festival includes 10 bracelet events, including the €5 million guaranteed Main Event, and €13 million guaranteed over the span of the series. Streamlined Schedule The schedule of events in 2018 is slightly trimmer, down to 10 events from 12 a year ago. But the loss of the One Drop charitable events doesn’t stop the schedule from offering a slate of tournaments that will appeal to everyone from the recreational bracelet hunter to the Super High Roller. In addition to the €10,350 Main Event with a €5,000,000 guarantee, there are two high rollers, including a €100,000 Super High Roller. Pot-Limit Omaha specialists have plenty to play as the game makes three appearances over the three weeks at three different buy-in levels. Also, two of the summer’s most popular branded tournaments, the Colossus and Monster Stack, have European counterparts again this year. A Look Back 2018 marks the 11th year of the WSOPE. In previous years, the event was held all over Europe from London to France to Germany. For the second time in as many years, this year, it takes place at King’s Casino in Rozvadov, Czech Republic. Last year, 888poker online qualifier Marti Roca de Torres turned his satellite investment into a 1.1 million Main Event victory. One that he parlayed into a sponsorship from the site. The only thing that overshadowed the Spaniard’s Main Event win was the attention paid to the WSOP Player of the Year race. That was eventually secured during the WSOPE by the controversial Chris Ferguson. Roca de Torres is just one of an extensive list of notable names that have taken down the WSOP Europe Championship bracelet in years past. At the first WSOPE in London in 2007, a young Annette Obrestad became the youngest WSOP bracelet winner and the first WSOPE champion winning £1,000,000 at just 18 years old. The years after saw a string of high profile players capture the title including John Juanda, Barry Shulman, James Bord and Elio Fox. In 2012, the leader in all-time WSOP bracelets won, Phil Hellmuth earned his 13th by taking down the Main Event in Cannes, France. Joining him in the years after, both Adrian Mateos and Kevin McPhee joined the WSOPE Main Event winner’s club. What To Watch For Of course, there will be a spotlight on who will become the next European Main Event Champion. At the same time, all eyes will be on the current WSOP Player of the Year race. At the top of the leaderboard is former top-ranked PocketFiver Shaun ‘shaundeeb’ Deeb. Deeb had a phenomenal summer campaign in Las Vegas. He accumulated 16 total cashes, earning more than $2.4 million. He also picked up two new WSOP bracelets bringing his career total to four. Deeb has a healthy points lead and will likely make the trip to Rozvadov to earn more. However, there are a couple players within striking distance that could change the face of the POY race if they attend the series and book a win or two. Deeb’s closest competition is Ben Yu. Like Deeb, Yu also had a magnificent 2018 WSOP. He cashed in 15 events and took home the bracelet in Event #77: $50,000 NLHE High Roller for $1.65 million. Both Yu and Deeb have had plenty of recent success in Pot Limit Omaha events. So, if we see the pair in Rozvadov, look for fireworks in the PLO tournaments if they both go deep. Joe ‘jcada99’ Cada and recent Poker Hall of Fame inductee John Hennigan are third and fourth on the WSOP leaderboard respectively. Neither player is well-known for traveling the circuit to play. So, it would be a surprise to see either of them on the other side of the world racking up points in this race. The World Series of Poker Europe beings on October 9 with the start of the €550 Colossus and will come to an end when the 12th WSOPE Main Event Champion is crowned on November 2. WSOP Europe Schedule of Events Date Event # Event 10/9 1a €550 Colossus No-Limit Hold'em - €1,000,000 Guarantee 10/10 1b 10/11 1c 10/12 1d 10/13 1e 10/14 2 €1,650 6-Handed Deepstack NLHE -- €200,000 Guarantee 10/15 3A €550 Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed -- €100,000 Guarantee 10/16 3B 10/17 4 €1,100 Turbo Special Bounty Hunter No-Limit Hold'em -- €200,000 Guarantee 10/18 5A €1,100 Monster Stack No-Limit Hold'em -- €1,000,000 Guarantee 10/19 5B 10/20 5C 10/21 6 €1,650 Pot Limit Omaha/NLHE Mix -- €200,000 Guarantee 10/22 7 €2,200 Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed -- €200,000 Guarantee 10/24 8 €25,000 High Roller No-Limit Hold'em - €1,000,000 Guarantee 10/26 9 €100,000 Super High Roller - €5,000,000 Guarantee 10/27 10A €10,350 WSOP Europe Main Event - €5,000,000 Guarantee 10/28 10B
  13. In June, the poker world is consumed with results and stories coming out of the World Series of Poker. This year was no different with players, like Michael Mizrachi, accomplishing previously inconceivable feats and legends, like Doyle Brunson, hinting that their time playing the game may have finally come to an end. Here are some of the biggest stories that made headlines in the month of June. World Series of Poker Takeover If you follow poker, then it is impossible to get away from the World Series of Poker in June and here at PocketFives, we brought you wire-to-wire coverage of the biggest tournaments taking place at the Rio in Las Vegas. Some of the biggest names in the game were crushing the highest stakes and taking home new hardware to add to their poker legacy. Additionally, amateurs were making dreams come true by winning life-changing money and fulfilling their poker dreams. Relive some of the summer glory by checking out some of the most popular headlines from the WSOP. Read: Siever Takes Down $10K Limit, Nguyen Wins MONSTER Stack Read: WSOP Social Media Fun Ramps Up In Week One Read: Just How The **** Are You Supposed To Bead John Smith? Read: Matt Mendez ‘Goes From Cards’ And Chips To WSOP History Maker Doyle Brunson Hints At Retirement In the midst of the 2018 World Series of Poker, news came down that Doyle Brunson - who had given up WSOP tournaments in recent years - registered for the $10K No Limit Deuce To Seven event. It was “probably the last one I’ll ever play.” he tweeted. However, after comments he had made to Poker Central, it looked as if this was not only his last tournament but that he was planning on walking away from the game of poker at the end of the summer. “I’m planning on retiring after the summer,” Brunson said citing that he wished to spend more time with his wife Louise, who was in declining health. Brunson then went on a deep run in Event #23, eventually finishing in seventh place. He tipped his hat and left the Rio to a standing ovation. Brunson has not yet stepped away from the game, regularly appearing both in Bobby’s Room at the Bellagio as well as on camera playing the highest mixed games on PokerGO. He had recently commented that his wife has been feeling better. Read: Doyle Brunson Spent 30 Hours Taking the Poker World Back In Time Read: Doyle Brunson Announces Retirement, Goes Deep in $10K 2-7 Shaun Deeb Wins Third WSOP Bracelet “I think I have a great shot at Player of the Year right now so I think I’m gonna battle in every event I can and just enjoy myself.” - Shaun Deeb, Back in June, the writing was on the wall. Former #1-ranked PocketFives member Shaun Deeb was on a heater and on a collision course with the 2018 WSOP Player of the Year award. Deeb picked up his third WSOP bracelet this summer when he outlasted Ben Yu heads-up in the $25K PLO event during Event #42: $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha 8-Handed High Roller for a massive score of $1.4 million. Deeb went on to pick up his fourth bracelet of the summer during Event #74: $10,000 No Limit Hold’em 6-Handed Big Blind Ante for another $814K - essentially propelling him to his first WSOP Player of the Year title. Read: WSOP - Former #1 Shaun Deeb Wins $25K PLO For 3rd Bracelet ($1.4M) Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mizrachi Wins His Third $50K PPC Title The $50K Poker Players Championship is still one of the most coveted titles in poker. Which makes it all the more impressive that in June of 2018 Michael Mizrachi took down the event for an incredible third time, beating Poker Hall of Fame member John Hennigan heads-up for the title. “It’s quite an accomplishment,” Mizrachi said, reflecting on his win. “To win the first one was amazing. The second was great. The third one is unheard of.” His third PPC victory was the fourth bracelet win of his career and awarded him a $1.2 million payday. It was the sixth seven-figure cash of his storied career. Read: WSOP - Michael Mizrachi Wins Third $50K PPC Title ($1.23M) Read: 5 Things - The Poker Players Champions Deserves More Celebration Alex Foxen, Kristen Bicknell Chop Venetian $5K A tinge of controversy surrounded the $5,000 $1 Million Guaranteed Mid-Stakes Poker Tour Main Event at the Venetian when well-known poker power couple Kristen Bicknell and Alex Foxen ended up chopping the event heads-up. Foxen, the high-roller powerhouse, officially took home the win, the trophy and $239,000 for first. His better-half Bicknell, took home $200,000 as the runner-up. However, after the tournament, there were some accusations of soft-play on social media between the couple. When the play became three-handed, Kahle Burns declined a three-way deal. When he fell in third place for $120,000, there was some over-analysis of hands that were played on the live stream and discussion over how to handle a situation where an actual couple is competing at a final table. Read: Alex Foxen Tops Venetian $5K To Headline Non-WSOP Events ‘C Darwin2’ Takes Down June PLB It was yet another month at the top of the PocketFives Monthly PLB for the Swedish superstar ‘C Darwin2’ in June. He had held over the rankings for the better part of 2018 and his dominance continued into early summer. Despite pulling back on volume, ‘C Darwin2’ managed a few major scores in June. In the first week he took down the Winamax Mini Las Vegas High Roller for $46,404. He also managed a runner-up finish in the June 17 edition of the PokerStars $2,100 Bounty Builder High Roller for over $25,000. In total, he posted eight five-figure scores in the month. In the end, it wasn’t really a close race in June as ‘C Darwin2’ held a nearly 1000 PLB point lead over his closest competition, Denmark’s ‘x_zola25’.
  14. The record-setting WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic wrapped up at Bellagio in Las Vegas, with the $10,400 Main Event attracting a huge field of 1,001 entries and featuring some of poker's biggest names. In addition to the Main Event, the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule featured several events with five-figure buy-ins and one with a six-figure price of entry. Here are the winners from a tremendous week of poker in Sin City. The biggest winners overall from these high buy-in events, excluding the $10,400 Main Event, were Jake Schindler, Jason Koon, Seth Davies, Chris Hunichen, and Dominik Nitsche. Although he didn't earn the most money, it's certainly worth noting that Sam Soverel cashed in four of these events for a total of $314,500. No one else cashed in more than two. Ladines Wins First $10,000 PLO Event The first two high roller events on the schedule were both $10,000 buy-in pot-limit Omaha tournaments. The first one attracted 35 entries for a $350,000 prize pool and saw the top five places make the money. Joshua Ladines took the event’s title and $128,090 top prize, with both Brian Rast and Sam Soverel finishing in the money. Joshua Ladines - $128,090 John Riordan - $102,910 Jonathan Abdellatif - $56,000 Brian Rast - $35,000 Sam Soverel - $28,000 Soverel Takes Second $10,000 PLO Event In the second $10,000 PLO event, a group of familiar faces was back in the money. Soverel topped the field of 29 entries to win the title and $116,000, Ladines finished third for $46,400, and WPT Five Diamond wonder boy Ryan Tosoc scored fifth for $23,200. Tosoc notably finished second in the Season XV WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic for $1.134 million before going on to win the event in Season XVI for $1.958 million. Sam Soverel - $116,000 Jonathan Depa - $75,400 Joshua Ladines- $46,400 Michael Song - $29,000 Ryan Tosoc - $23,200 Hennigan Captures $10,000 8-Game Mixed Title If you know Bellagio, you know it’s home to the most iconic high-stakes poker room in the world, Bobby’s Room. It’s where the game’s elite compete for astronomical cash-game stakes, but during WPT Five Diamond some of those players shifted their focus to tournament play, specifically in the $10,000 buy-in 8-Game Mixed High Roller. The tournament generated 24 entries, and it was none other than five-time World Series of Poker gold bracelet winner and WPT Champions Club member John Hennigan taking home the top prize of $110,400. John Hennigan - $110,400 Ben Yu - $67,200 Randy Ohel - $38,400 John Racener - $24,000 Loeser and Fox Chop First $25,000 High Roller In the first of three $25,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em tournaments on this year’s WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic slate, 42 entries were generated to create a prize pool of $1.05 million. The top six places paid, and the top two spots went to Manig Loeser and Elio Fox in a chop that earned each player more than $300,000. Loeser scored first place for $321,300, and Fox took second for $308,700. Manig Loeser- $321,300 Elio Fox - $308,700 Jake Schindler - $168,000 Dan Smith - $105,000 Cary Katz - $84,000 Nick Petrangelo - $63,000 Petrangelo Wins Second $25,000 High Roller The second $25,000 buy-in tournament attracted 47 entries and generated a $1.175 million prize pool. The top seven places reached the money, with several notables cashing. None earned more than Nick Petrangelo, though, who chopped the event heads up with Sergio Aido to take home the winning prize of $289,944. Aido scored $287,634 for second. Petrangelo was coming off a sixth-place result for $63,000 in the first $25,000 event of this series. Soverel, who finished in the money of the first two high rollers on the schedule, including winning one for $116,000, finished sixth in this event for $70,500. Nick Petrangelo - $289,944 Sergio Aido - $287,634 Seth Davies - $256,672 Ben Yu - $117,500 Kazuhiko Yotsushika - $94,000 Sam Soverel - $70,500 Rainer Kempe - $58,750 Davies Victorious in Third $25,000 High Roller The third and final $25,000 high roller tournament on the WPT Five Diamond schedule drew 50 entries for a $1.25 million prize pool. The top eight places reached the money, and it was Seth Davies taking the title and $341,920 in first-place prize money. The win came just days after Davies took third in the previous $25,000 high roller event during the series of $256,672, as you can see above. Davies did a deal with Isaac Haxton in second place, who earned $320,580. The money was filled with notable high rollers, including Alex Foxen taking third for $175,000. Foxen has had himself quite a 2018 and is closing it strong both on the live felt and the virtual felt. In the online world, Foxen recently achieved a new all-time high in the top 100 of the PocketFives Online Poker Rankings. You'll also notice Soverel's name appearing in the in-the-money places once again, this time for fifth place, worth $100,000. Seth Davies - $341,920 Isaac Haxton - $320,580 Alex Foxen - $175,000 David Peters - $125,000 Sam Soverel - $100,000 Christoph Vogelsang - $75,000 Rainer Kempe - $62,500 Elio Fox: $50,000 Schindler Defeats Koon for $100,000 Super High Roller Victory The final big buy-in event from the WPT Five Diamond World Poker Classic schedule this year was the $100,000 Super High Roller. The event drew 37 entries to Bellagio for a $3.7 million prize pool and the top six spots reached the money. Earning the $1.332 million first-place prize was Jake Schindler. Adding that score to the $168,000 he won earlier in the series for taking third place in one of the $25,000 high rollers, Schindler scored $1.5 million in prize money at Bellagio this December. Schindler beat out Jason Koon for the win, and Koon took home $888,000 for his second-place finish. Jake Schindler - $1,332,000 Jason Koon - $888,000 Chris Hunichen - $592,000 Dominik Nitsche - $370,000 Ben Tollerene - $296,000 Talal Shakerchi - $222,000
  15. The 2019 World Series of Poker is almost here. It's the 50th annual WSOP and there's a lot of anticipation of what's to come this summer. One player who always looks forward to the summer is Phil Hellmuth. He's the poker player with the most WSOP gold bracelets (15) and most WSOP cashes (134), plus it's 30 years since he won the 1989 WSOP Main Event. "I love it!" Hellmuth told PocketFives when asked how it feels to have the WSOP right around the corner once again. "It's 30 years since my win in the WSOP Main Event." In 1989, a 24-year-old Hellmuth shocked the gambling world when he defeated two-time defending champion Johnny Chan to win the WSOP Main Event for $755,000. Hellmuth topped a field of 178 entries and launched himself into poker stardom. It was the first of his 15 gold bracelets, one of which was the WSOP Europe Main Event title in 2012, and 30 years later he's still hungry for more. "It would be nice to win a no-limit 2-7 tournament - I have two second-place finishes - as I've always seen myself winning one," Hellmuth said when asked what he's most looking forward to this summer, other than the Main Event. "It would be nice to win another razz tourney. That would solidify me as the best razz tourney player in the world, based on WSOP results. I would love to win a seven-card stud eight-or-better tourney or an eight-game mix or 10-game mix. Finally, winning a huge buy-in or field size no-limit hold’em tournament or heads-up tourney would be spectacular." In addition to those events, Hellmuth recently took to social media to proclaim, "I want to win a WSOP PLO bracelet in the next few years!" Of all the bracelets he's won, he has yet to earn one in the great game of pot-limit Omaha. His best WSOP performance in this exciting, four-card variant was a fourth-place finish at the 2000 WSOP. "I'm behind the curve in two tourney games: pot-limit Omaha and 2-7 triple draw," Hellmuth said. "I keep improving, which is wonderful, and who knows where that will lead. No one thought I would become the best razz tourney player in the world, and yet, I have shredded the WSOP razz tourneys since 2012 like no other. It's been a historic run, with two firsts, a second, a fifth, and a 13th. So, I need to improve at PLO tourneys. I need to learn something from Jason Mercier and Shaun Deeb." Speaking of Mercier and Deeb, Hellmuth included these two players, who hold five and four bracelets, respectively, when mentioning who might be able to catch him in the great bracelet race. "Daniel Negreanu says he will catch me in cashes," Hellmuth said. "A little known fact is that Negreanu has actually played more WSOP tourneys than I have. Others have said they will catch me in bracelets. Phil Ivey says his goal is to win 30. I was shooting for 24, until Ivey went public going for 30, then I changed my goal to 30. But 24 would still be amazing. Let me get there first. So, Ivey. Maybe Negreanu, Deeb, Mercier, John Monnette, or John Hennigan. In hold'em, of which I have 13 so far, maybe Joe Cada, Dominik Nitsche, or Adrian Mateos." Hellmuth is currently top of the charts in most WSOP gold bracelets and most WSOP cashes, two records that he holds by quite wide margins. In the bracelets category, the next closest are Ivey, Chan, and Doyle Brunson, who each have 10. For cashes, Hellmuth is first with 137 and then Chris Ferguson is second with 120. Negreanu currently sits third entering the 2019 WSOP with 108. "Let's not forget that I hold the record for most WSOP final tables," Hellmuth added. "It would be nice to own the money list title, but to me, it's all about the bracelets." Hellmuth's last gold bracelet win came last year when he won the $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 30-Minute Levels tournament for $485,082. For final tables, the last time he didn't make one at the WSOP was in 2013. Having played the WSOP for so long and racked up so many accolades, it wouldn't be out of the question for Hellmuth to slow down and take it easy a bit, just as most athletes can get their titles and then take it a little easier. But every WSOP, whether in Las Vegas during the summer or elsewhere in the world some other time of the year, Hellmuth is grinding away and looking to add another few lines to the record books that are already littered with his name. "It's in my nature, it's in my DNA," Hellmuth said when asked what continues to drive him. "I'm super competitive, and I'm competing against the best players in the world, in this era, and last and future eras, for greatest poker player of all time. Right now, I have all of the records, but 15 WSOP bracelets is not enough to keep the record. So I stay focused, I stay determined, I pay attention, and keep abreast of new strategies. I stay away from drugs, away from drinking too much, and I take care of myself; watching my weight and sleeping in almost every single day. Long-term health is a factor in this race." With decades of experience at the WSOP, Hellmuth has undoubtedly seen a lot over the years. For that reason, there are few better to ask what the biggest differences are between then and now. "The numbers," Hellmuth said. "The WSOP was special back then, and a lot more like a convention for all of the best poker players in the world. But now, it's out of control with huge numbers, and I love it. Also, back in 1988 and 1989, we had a lot of one-day tournaments." While excited for what's to come poker-wise, Hellmuth has been quite busy as of late, but not necessarily in the poker realm. If you follow him on social media, then you're likely aware of some of the off-the-felt moves he's been making. "I'm doing a lot of business deals right now, both as an investor and as someone that's honored to be joining advisory boards (just joined LassoGear.com advisory board). In the last six months, I have invested in b spot (online slot machines), TravelSmarter.com (direct-to-consumer hotel room rates, airfare, and a lot more), End Game Talent Agency (esports talent agency), and STEAM Role (mentoring site). "I love business, but all of the founders understand that I will disappear into poker on May 25," Hellmuth said. "I really need to cut off all communication for a few months and focus on playing great poker. For the 2019 WSOP, I'm adding back mediation." Lastly, with the WSOP Main Event seeing a rise in attendance over the previous year in each of the last three years, Hellmuth needed to be asked to give a prediction for the 2019 WSOP Main Event. "I think we will crack 10,000 players!" Hellmuth said. "The ESPN coverage, thanks to PokerGO and Cary Katz, has been spectacular, with 14 days of coverage, and the economy is crushing!"
  16. 2019 marks the 50th annual World Series of Poker. The most prestigious poker festival in history has played a pivotal role in creating many of the legends and superstars of the game. To commemorate the occasion, PocketFives editorial staff each ranked the top 50 players in WSOP history in an effort to define and rank the most important, influential, and greatest WSOP players of all time. #20 - Men Nguyen BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 7 95 $3,308,113 43 For over 30 years Men ‘The Master’ Nguyen has made his presence felt at the World Series of Poker. A seven-time bracelet winner with over $3.3 million in earnings, Nguyen’s success at the series is often accompanied by rumblings and allegations of cheating at points in his career (all of which he denies.) A player of all the games, four of his seven titles have come in a variant of Seven-Card Sud, the most recent of which took place in 2010 when he earned the bracelet and first-place prize of $394,807 in the $10,000 Seven-Card Stud Championship Event. His 95 WSOP cashes currently puts him seventh on the All-Time WSOP Cashes list. READ: WSOP Top 50: Huck Seed, Shaun Deeb, David Chiu Make Top 30 #19 - TJ Cloutier BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 6 70 $4,468,559 42 Poker Hall of Fame member TJ Cloutier has earned just under $4.5 million over the course of his nearly 35 years attending the World Series of Poker. Cloutier has six bracelets to his name, two of which he picked up in the same year. In addition to his six titles, Cloutier finished as the runner-up in five other bracelet events. He’s finished in the top 10 an astonishing 42 times out of his 70 WSOP cashes. Additionally, Cloutier plays all the games, earning a bracelet in Razz, Pot Limit Hold’em and three in a variant of Omaha. His most recent bracelet was back in 2005 when he took down the $5K No Limit Hold’em, one of the most difficult events of the summer, for over $657,000. #18 - Joe Cada BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 4 35 $13,102,334 9 Winner of the 2009 World Series of Poker Main Event for over $8.5M, Joe Cada has been a force at the WSOP for nearly a decade. He has four bracelets, two of which came in 2018 when he had one of the best years in WSOP history. Cada kicked off the 2018 series with his third bracelet in Event #3 ($3,000 No Limit Hold’em Shootout). Then he went on to his second post-Moneymaker final table, finishing in fifth place for $2.15M. Immediately after busting the Main Event, Cada register for, and eventually won, Event #75 (The Closer, $1,500 No Limit Hold’em) for his fourth bracelet and another $612K. "Joe Cada already has four gold bracelets and is coming off an incredible summer that had him contending for the WSOP Player of the Year award. When Cada won the WSOP Main Event in 2009, he was the poster boy of an online poker player. He's graduated to become one of the top tournament players we see at the WSOP and is someone who can be considered as legitimate a threat as any to win a bracelet each summer. Placing first and fifth in the WSOP Main Event in the post-Moneymaker era in nothing short of tremendous, and at just 31 years old, the sky is the limit for Cada at the WSOP." - Donnie Peters, PocketFives Managing Editor #17 - John Hennigan BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 5 44 $5,400,259 17 Five-time WSOP gold bracelet winner John Hennigan is a master of all the games. As one of the most respected mixed game players, his most notable bracelet win came in the 2014 $50,000 Poker Player’s Championship. The PPC is an event that he has made the final table of three times, nearly taking it down again in 2018. The Poker Hall of Famer has also won titles in $2,000 Limit Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo (2002), $5,000 Limit Hold’em (2004), $10,000 2-7 Lowball Triple Draw Championship (2016) and $10,000 HORSE (2018). Hennigan has over $5.4M in earnings since his first WSOP cash back in 1999. "JOhn Hennigan might not have triple digit WSOP cashes, but for my money, he belongs higher up on this list ahead of some players who do. He plays a very limited schedule at the WSOP and focuses most of his energy on cash games. But when he does come to the Rio and buy-in to an event, he's always a threat to go deep. Three of his bracelets came in events that elite level players hold in high regard: $10K HORSE, $10K Triple Draw 2-7, $50K Poker Players Championship." - Lance Bradley, Editor in Chief #16 - Johnny Moss BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 9 27 $4,385,499 27 Nine-time bracelet winner Johnny Moss was a player in the World Series of Poker from the very beginning. Back in 1970 the very first WSOP Main Event was not the tournament format it is today. It was a cash game where the title was awarded through a vote by fellow players and Moss was selected to win, not a bracelet, but the inaugural silver cup. The series changed to a tournament the next year and Moss went on to win the Main Event. He won the Main Event again in 1974. A fixture of the WSOP, Moss, a Poker Hall of Fame member, was a Seven Card Stud specialist, winning four of his nine bracelets in a Seven Card Stud variant. He was a fixture of the series right through to 1995, when he passed away at the age of 88. READ: WSOP Top 50: Brian Rast, Chip Reese, Dan Harrington Make Top 40 #15 - Mike Matusow BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 4 62 $4,014,593 21 One of the biggest poker superstars to emerge in the wake of the poker boom is Mike ‘The Mouth’ Matusow. The television cameras were drawn to Matusow’s overwhelming self-confidence and his seemingly non-stop table talk. Matusow has nearly $4M in career WSOP earnings and four gold bracelets spanning his 20+ year career. A threat in any game, Matusow has bracelets in No Limit Hold’em, Limit Omaha Hi-Lo, No Limit 2-7, and Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo. He’s made two Main Event final tables and finished in the Top 10 21 out of his 62 cashes. Stats aside, Matusow’s personality is equally important to the WSOP brand as his exploits dominated ESPN’s televised coverage for years. “Bold, brash, and extremely polarizing, Mike ‘The Mouth’ Matusow is the archetype of the heart-on-your-sleeve old school poker player who seemed to live and die on every flop, turn and river. His antics at the table drew the television cameras to him and it left an impression on every up and coming poker player who tuned in to see what he would say next. But the things is, he’s the kind of guy who talks a big game and then shows up to back it up. A premiere mixed game player, Matusow is a player, still to this day, is a final table threat in just about any tournament he enters.” - Jeff Walsh, PocketFives Senior Writer #14 - John Juanda BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 5 65 $4,736,040 36 Longtime live grinder John Juanda remains one of the most respected poker players in the world and much of that is due to his success at the WSOP. This year will be Juanda’s twentieth at the series where he’s accumulated over $4.7M in earnings and five gold bracelets. In 2003, Juanda scored two bracelets in the same year taking down Event #21 ($2,500 Limit Seven Card Stud) and Event #33 ($2,500 Pot-Limit Omaha). In 2008, Juanda won himself the WSOP Europe Main Event title for over $1.5M. Dangerous in any game he plays, each of Juanda's five bracelets was won in different poker variants. Equally impressive is Juanda ability to go deep in tournaments as he has made the top 10 in over that over half of his 65 WSOP cashes. "It really is amazing that more than half of John Juanda's cashes at the WSOP have resulted in top 10 finishes, and his five bracelets speak to the diversity of his skills as they come in five different games. Juanda has been a model of consistency at the WSOP for a long period of time. He may be a quiet, unemotional player, but his presence is one of the game's most powerful and he remains one of the most feared opponents at the table." - Donnie Peters #13 - Billy Baxter BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 7 35 $1,100,207 16 Deuce to Seven specialist and one of the WSOP’s earliest attendees, noted professional sports bettor Billy Baxter has earned seven World Series of Poker bracelets, five of which have come in the aforementioned game. Baxter’s first recorded WSOP cash back in 1975 and four of his first five recorded WSOP scores were for wins. He has continued to appear at the series for over 40 years, having gone deep in the $2,500 Mixed Triple Draw Lowball event in 2018. Baxter’s longevity has helped him pick up 35 cashes and over $1.1 million in earnings. READ: Ranking the 50 Greatest Players in World Series of Poker History #12 - Allen Cunningham BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 5 69 $7,222,077 23 Allen Cunningham has quietly crushed the World Series of Poker since he first cashed in the series back in 1998. Cunningham has won five bracelets and over $7.2 million in earnings over 69 total cashes. His first bracelet came back in 2001 in a $5,000 Seven-Card Stud tournament. After picking up his third bracelet in 2005 and reaching three additional final tables that year, Cunningham earned himself the WSOP Player of the Year. He came back in 2006 to make the final table of the Main Event, finishing in fourth place for over $3.6M. Then, in 2007, he returned to capture his fifth bracelet in the $5,000 Pot-Limit Hold’em Championship. His 69 cashes puts him in the top 25 on the All-Time WSOP Cashes list. #11 - Scotty Nguyen BRACELETS CASHES WINNINGS TOP 10s 5 62 $5,899,247 25 One of the most iconic players in World Series of Poker is Scotty Nguyen, baby. Dubbed 'The Prince of Poker', Nguyen is a five-time bracelet winner with over $5.8 million in earnings and nearly an equal amount of historic televised moments on the felt. He took home the Main Event title in 1998 for $1,000,000 and followed that up with his infamous bracelet-winning performance at the 2008 $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship (later renamed the Poker Players Championship) for another $1.98M. Nguyen’s flare and style combined with his poker prowess turned him into a poker celebrity the likes of which has endured to this day…baby. “There’s only one Scotty, baby. The only player to have won both the Main Event (1998) and the $50,000 Poker Players Championship (2008, then called World Championship H.O.R.S.E.) Scotty’s WSOP results speak for themselves. But Scotty is a standout personality like none other - he fled Vietnam and came to the U.S., discovered poker and turned his skill into the American Dream. He picked up five bracelets (so far) along the way and he's won over a legion of fans with his trademark gold chains, loose table talk and the ability to end every sentence with ‘baby!’. Some may say the game has passed him by, but over $600,000 of his nearly $6M in career earnings came in 2018.” - Jeff Walsh, Senior Writer
  17. In what has to go down as one of the crazier days of the 2019 World Series of Poker, four players won bracelets including a Poker Hall of Famer, a New Jersey online poker beast, and two players for whom the bracelet was a long time coming. Meanwhile, Daniel Negreanu got as close to winning his seventh career bracelet as he could possibly get without actually winning it. Joseph Cheong Wins First Bracelet in $1K Double Stack Coming into the final table of the $1,000 Double Stack No Limit Hold'em event, Joseph Cheong's WSOP resume included three runner-up finishes and one rather infamous third place finish, but no wins. That all changed on Wednesday night though. Cheong rode a massive chip stack throughout the final table into the final heads-up confrontation with David Ivers and wasted little time in erasing that '0' next to his bracelet count. The win came with a $687,782 payday, Cheong's second largest WSOP score behind only his third place finish in the 2010 WSOP Main Event. Ivers walked away with $424,791 s the runner-up. "I've played poker so long, it was just another day at work," Cheong said afterwards. This lines with what Cheong said in May 2018, when he said "I’ve never been interested in trophy collecting other than for the fact that first place pays the most money. Also…why a bracelet? Who wants a bracelet? Something cooler might make me want one. I have no interest in any trophy or trinket." Final Table Payouts Joseph Cheong - $687,782 David Ivers - $424,791 Zinan Xu - $314,876 Andrea Buonocore - $235,099 Arianna Son - $176,820 Ido Ashkenazi - $133,970 David Guay - $102,258 Ivan Deyra - $78,638 Brock Wilson - $60,930 David Dibernardi - $47,568 Michael Blake Leads Super Seniors Final 10 Seniors Week in Las Vegas is about to come to an end. On Wednesday, 120 players who managed to make Day 2 of the Super Seniors event were widdled down to just 10. Michael Blake, from Gallup, New Mexico, ended with the chip lead. Kanajett Hathaitham is the player closest to Blake after finishing with 9,235,000. Rick Austin sits third with 6,475,000. CardPlayer Magazine co-owner Barry Shulman sits sixth with 3,665,000. Action resumes at 11 AM PT on Thursday and will play down to a winner. Final 10 Chip Counts Michael Blake - 12,300,000 Kanajett Hathaitham - 9,235,000 Rick Austin - 6,475,000 Jeffrey Miller - 5,525,000 Cary Marshall - 5,500,000 Barry Shulman - 3,665,000 Miles Harris - 3,265,000 Bruce Treitman - 3,254,000 William Davis - 2,755,000 Timothy Joseph - 2,535,000 Ismael Bojang Wins $1,500 PLO for Bracelet #1 Ismael Bojang was starting to enter some dangerous territory. After the money bubble burst on Day 2 of the $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha event, Bojang became the first player to pick up 10 cashes at the 2019 WSOP. It almost moved him into sixth place on the all-time cashes list for players without a bracelet. He's not on that list at all anymore though. Bojang outlasted 1,215 other players to win the $1,500 PLO event, $298,507 and his first gold bracelet on Wednesday night, putting an end to a streak of 71 cashes without a win. “Everybody keeps asking me when I am going to win my first bracelet, I guess I can dodge those questions now,'' Bojang said. Bojang beat James Little heads-up for the title. Little has emerged from relative obscurity in the poker world to pick up eight cashes this summer. The $184,424 runner-up prize is the second largest of his career behind only his win in the World Poker Tour Fallsview Classic in February. Former WPT Player of the Year, Ben Zamani finished third for $131,335. Final Table Payouts Ismael Bojang - $298,507 James Little - $184,424 Benjamin Zamani - $131,335 Johannes Tobbe - $94,669 Denis Bagdasarov - $69,082 Mihai Niste - $51,041 Richard Tuhrim - $38,189 Glen Cressman - $28,940 Matthew Mueller - $22,215 Hennigan Denies Negreanu in $10K Seven Card Stud The final table of the $10,000 Seven Card Stud event was one for the history books. For the first time in WSOP history, two Poker Hall of Fame members battled heads-up for a bracelet. John Hennigan, who was enshrined last summer, defeated Daniel Negreanu heads up to win the sixth bracelet of his career, four of which are Championship events. "It was a very tough duel, especially for me," Hennigan. "(Negreanu) played so well, and I played so poorly, he really did not get what he deserved. He made every right decision and I made every wrong decision, and it was just bad luck for him at the end." Along with the bracelet, Hennigan took home $245,451 for the win. Negreanu walked away with $151,700 and the ninth runner-up finish of his WSOP career. David 'ODB' Baker finished third for $104,416. Russia's Mikhael Semin, the only player the at the final table without a bracelet earned $73,810 for finishing fourth. It's his second $10,000 Championship event final table of the summer. He previously finished sixth in the $10,000 HORSE. Final Table Payouts John Hennigan - $245,451 Daniel Negreanu - $151,700 David 'ODB' Baker - $104,416 Mikhail Semin - $73,810 David Singer - $53,621 Chris Tryba - $40,066 Frank Kassela - $30,817 Frankie O'Dell - $24,419 Adam Lamphere Leads $600 NLHE/PLO Deepstack Final Table Just seven players stand between Adam Lamphere and a WSOP victory in the $600 No Limit Hold'em/Pot Limit Omaha Deepstack event after the Lansing, MI native worked his way into the final table chip lead after outlasting 187 other players on Wednesday. Lamphere bagged up 17,200,000 which puts him ahead of second place Dan Matsuzuki's 14,000,000. Raghav Bansal ended the day with the third biggest stack at 9,300,000. Rainer Kempe made his first WSOP final table since 2017, ending the day with 8,000,000 and the fourth biggest stack. Among the 187 casualties on Day 2 were former #1-ranked PocketFivers Calvin Anderson, Tim West, and Ari Engel. Jesse Silvia, Tony Miles, Matthew Wantman, Jamie Gold, and Jake Schwartz also busted on Wednesday. The final table begins at Noon PT. Final Table Chip Counts Adam Lamphere - 17,200,000 Dan Matsuzuki - 14,000,000 Raghav Bansal - 9,300,000 Rainer Kempe - 8,000,000 Aristeidis Moschonas - 7,325,000 Ashish Ahuja - 6,975,000 Stephen Ma - 6,325,000 Amazon Daniel Moravec - 2,950,000 Ryan Hughes Leads $2,500 Mixed Big Bet Final Table In the three-year history of the $2,500 Mixed Big Bet event, nobody has outperformed Ryan Hughes, but he doesn't have a bracelet to show for it. Yet. Hughes, who finished second in this event in 2018 and seventh in 2017, finished Day 2 with the chip lead with just seven players remaining. Hughes is the only player to cash in this event all three years. Right behind Hughes is Arthur Morris. Phillip Hui, with seven cashes coming into this event, sits third. Poker Hall of Famer Mike Sexton and three-time bracelet winner Loren Klein are also at the final table. Jared Bleznick, David Benyamine, Jeff Lisandro, Max Kruse, Chris Ferguson, Layne Flack, Alex Foxen, Dan Smith, John Monnette and Joao Vieira were amongst the players who busted on Wednesday with an in-the-money finish. The final table begins at 2 PM PT. Final Table Chip Counts Ryan Hughes - 1,212,000 Arthur Morris - 728,000 Phillip Hui - 425,000 Joseph Couden - 405,000 Jonathan Depa - 223,000 Mike Sexton - 182,000 Loren Klein - 95,000 Ignacio Molina Leads $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Bounty After Day 1 Day 1 of the $1,500 No Limit Hold'em Bounty event drew 1,807 players, but 10 levels of play left just 272 standing. Leading the field is Ignacio Molina of Andorra with 624,500. Kevin Naegelen sits second with 576,500 and Baitai Li is third with 506,000. Phil Ivey headlines the list of notables to make it to Day 2. The 10-time bracelet winner bagged up 59,500. He's joined by Nacho Barbero, Martijn Gerrits, Loni Harwood, Steven van Zadelhoff, Justin Young, and Barry Greenstein. Day resumes at Noon PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Ignacio Molina - 624,500 Kevin Naegelen - 576,500 Baitai Li - 506,000 Benjamin Chalot - 505,000 Walter Fisher - 499,500 David Thomas - 475,500 Tom Hall - 470,000 Shahar Levi - 460,000 Matthew Volosevich - 455,500 Harrison Gimbel - 454,500 Keith Lehr Leads $25K PLO High Roller After Day 1 The biggest buy-in Pot Limit Omaha event on the calendar got underway Wednesday, with 222 players entering the $25,000 PLO High Roller. Keith Lehr edged out Pennsylvania poker pro Paul Volpe for the Day 1 chip lead as 128 advanced to Day 2. Lehr finished with 692,000, while Volpe ended up with 682,000. Firas Sadou sits third with 625,000. Shaun Deeb continues his quest for the WSOP Player of the Year title and finished with the ninth biggest stack. Alex Epstein, Ben Tollerene, Justin Bonomo, John Racener, Ben Lamb, and Anthony Zinno were among the notables moving on to Day 2. Phil Galfond, Mike Gorodinsky, Michael Mizrachi, Dan Zack, Chance Kornuth, and Chris Hunichen were among the players who busted at least one bullet on Day 1. Players are allowed one re-entry. With registration open until the end of the second level of play on Day 2, the field should surpass the 230 from 2018. Action resumes at 2 PM PT. Top 10 Chip Counts Keith Lehr - 692,000 Paul Volpe - 682,000 Firas Sadou - 625,000 Dario Sammartino - 595,500 Ludovic Geilich - 590,000 Alexey Makarov - 584,500 Niko Soininen - 574,500 John Riordan - 537,000 Shaun Deeb - 518,500 Ka Lau - 492,500 Daniel 'centrfieldr' Lupo Wins $500 Online NLHE Turbo Deepstack Stand up New Jersey. For the second time this summer, a New Jersey online poker pro has picked up some shiny gold hardware. Daniel 'centrfieldr' Lupo, the #3-ranked player in the Garden State, beat out 1,180 other players to win the $500 Online No Limit Hold'em Turbo Deepstack for the first bracelet of his career. His win comes just 2.5 weeks after Yong Kwon won the $400 Online bracelet event. Final Table Payouts Dan 'centrefieldr' Lupo - $145,273.90 David 'DTC13' Clarke - $89,692.92 'johnsonck' - $63,771.03 'JSTRIZZA' - $45,959.67 'staeks' - $33,475.82 'MisterKK' - $24,729.16 'jnutz' - $18,526.99 'TonyStarsGFK' - $13.994.64 'HITRII999' - $10,734.52
  18. The World Series of Poker $50,000 Poker Players Championship is one of the most prestigious tournaments in the entire world. It’s full of elite players. Those that are considered to the best of the best will tell you that it’s the most meaningful poker tournament to them, while others spend entire careers just trying to build up enough skill, experience, respect, and bankroll to simply compete in it. When it comes to the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, who are the best? That’s what we're going to take a look at here. The event’s first year was in 2006 and it drew 143 entries. David 'Chip' Reese, of whom many will tell you was the greatest all-around poker player ever, won the inaugural tournament by beating Andy Bloch in heads-up play. He earned $1.784 million for the win and is still one of the event’s top earners. In 2008, following the death of Reese in December 2007, the tournament’s trophy was named the 'Chip Reese Memorial Trophy.' With the completion of the 2019 edition of the event, the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship has been played 14 times. From those 14 events, a total of 1,556 entries have been generated and 140 individual players have cashed. The total prize money that’s been awarded from the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship stands at $74.61 million. Twenty-one different players have cashed for $1 million or more in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, and it’s none other than three-time winner Michael 'The Grinder' Mizrachi sitting atop the event’s all-time money list with $4.63 million in winnings. Mizrachi has cashed four times in the event, with each being a run to the final table. His success has been so great in this tournament that he’s nearly $1.5 million ahead of Brian Rast’s second-most winnings of $3.16 million. WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship Facts and Figures Michael Mizrachi is the event's all-time money leader with $4.63 million won 140 individual players have cashed at least once in the event 21 individual players have cashed for a total of $1 million or more Five individual players have cashed for a total of $2 million or more Three individual players have cashed for a total of $3 million or more Freddy Deeb holds the record for single-largest payday, winning $2.276 million for his victory in 2007 Five players are tied for most cashes in the event at four each - Michael Mizrachi, John Hennigan, Andy Bloch, Phil Ivey, and Barry Greenstein 19 individual players have cashed at least three times in the event Ralph Perry has cashed three times in the event but never reached the final table In 2013, Gary Benson and Joe Cassidy busted simultaneously with 17 players left, splitting 16th-place prize money and taking $55,947 each Michael Mizrachi has made the most final tables at four; John Hennigan has made the second most at three The event has awarded a total of $74.61 million Largest field size and prize pool came in both 2007 and 2008 - each year drew 148 entries for a prize pool of $7.104 million 2019 marked the event's smallest turnout and prize - 74 entries and $3.552 million WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship All-Time Money List PLAYER WINNINGS CASHES FINAL TABLES WINS Michael Mizrachi $4,630,641 4 4 3 Brian Rast $3,160,474 3 2 2 John Hennigan $3,091,166 4 3 1 Freddy Deeb $2,360,462 2 1 1 Matthew Ashton $2,025,385 3 1 1 Scotty Nguyen $1,989,120 1 1 1 Andy Bloch $1,813,988 4 2 0 Chip Reese $1,784,640 1 1 1 John Hanson $1,641,679 2 2 0 Mike Gorodinsky $1,519,715 3 1 1 Elior Sion $1,512,338 2 1 1 Bruno Fitoussi $1,448,599 2 2 0 David Bach $1,436,646 2 1 1 Michael DeMichele $1,243,200 1 1 0 Chris Klodnicki $1,148,249 2 2 0 Vladimir Schemelev $1,131,904 2 1 0 Phil Hui $1,099,311 1 1 1 Don Nguyen $1,096,254 1 1 0 Phil Hellmuth $1,063,034 1 1 0 Matt Glantz $1,044,458 3 2 0 Phil Ivey $1,013,457 4 1 0 Minh Ly $975,593 2 2 0 Brandon Shack-Harris $937,975 1 1 0 Barry Greenstein $928,919 4 2 0 Jean-Robert Bellande $873,455 2 1 0 David Oppenheim $869,955 3 1 0 Johannes Becker $862,649 1 1 0 Josh Arieh $803,969 2 1 0 Justin Bonomo $801,048 1 1 0 Erick Lindgren $781,440 1 1 0 David Singer $749,280 2 2 0 Huck Seed $708,651 3 2 0 David 'ODB' Baker $657,123 2 1 0 Abe Mosseri $642,726 3 1 0 Isaac Haxton $595,812 1 1 0 Jesse Martin $594,570 1 1 0 Amnon Filippi $586,080 1 1 0 Lyle Berman $573,957 2 1 0 Jim Bechtel $549,120 1 1 0 Eric Wasserson $545,772 1 1 0 Daniel Negreanu $535,634 3 1 0 Erik Sagstrom $522,393 1 1 0 Dan Smith $521,782 1 1 0 Robert Mizrachi $516,650 3 1 0 Shaun Deeb $507,791 3 1 0 David Benyamine $497,122 1 1 0 Daniel Alaei $492,771 3 1 0 Scott Seiver $484,567 3 1 0 Owais Ahmed $482,058 1 1 0 TJ Cloutier $480,480 1 1 0 Dewey Tomko $474,624 2 1 0 Mike Wattel $467,046 3 1 0 John Esposito $466,407 1 1 0 Kenny Tran $444,000 1 1 0 John Juanda $436,865 1 1 0 Ivo Donev $419,337 1 1 0 Luke Schwartz $406,736 1 1 0 Doyle Brunson $398,880 2 1 0 Ralph Perry $392,200 3 0 0 George Danzer $388,523 1 1 0 Vitaly Lunkin $368,812 1 1 0 Mike Leah $364,197 1 1 0 Ben Sulsky $353,928 1 1 0 Bryce Yockey $325,989 1 1 0 Roland Israelashvili $317,882 1 1 0 Paul Volpe $312,813 2 1 0 Jonathan Duhamel $307,018 2 1 0 George Lind $300,441 1 1 0 Ray Dehkharghani $299,617 2 0 0 Aaron Katz $288,562 2 1 0 Chun Zhou $286,122 1 1 0 Tommy Hang $279,292 2 0 0 Will Wilkinson $272,558 1 1 0 David 'Bakes' Baker $272,275 1 1 0 Benny Glaser $260,578 1 1 0 Stephen Chidwick $253,497 1 1 0 Jeff Lisandro $248,635 2 0 0 Patrick Bueno $230,880 1 1 0 Ville Wahlbeck $219,655 1 1 0 Frank Kassela $212,829 1 1 0 Gavin Smith $205,920 1 0 0 Patrik Antonius $205,920 1 0 0 Robert Williamson III $205,920 1 0 0 Bill Chen $205,856 1 1 0 Brett Richey $204,579 2 0 0 Ben Lamb $201,338 1 1 0 Joe Cassidy $193,227 2 0 0 James Obst $192,767 2 0 0 Thor Hansen $188,256 1 1 0 Mike Matusow $186,128 2 0 0 Daniel Kelly $184,222 1 1 0 Chau Giang $184,087 1 1 0 Mikael Thuritz $182,463 1 1 0 Chris Vitch $182,391 2 0 0 Raymond Davis $177,600 1 0 0 Michael Glick $173,796 1 0 0 Jason Lester $168,529 1 0 0 Dan Cates $168,305 1 1 0 Melissa Burr $165,435 1 1 0 Erik Seidel $162,381 1 1 0 Alexander Kostritsyn $152,730 1 0 0 Nick Schulman $152,730 1 0 0 Talal Shakerchi $149,398 2 0 0 Bryn Kenney $147,882 1 0 0 Greg Mueller $144,049 1 0 0 Yan Chen $143,400 1 0 0 Joseph Michael $142,080 1 0 0 Jason Mercier $139,265 1 0 0 Shawn Buchanan $139,265 1 0 0 Cong Do $137,280 1 0 0 David Levi $137,280 1 0 0 Allen Kessler $134,101 1 1 0 Gabe Kaplan $131,424 1 0 0 Kevin Song $128,620 1 0 0 Ian Johns $125,142 1 0 0 Mike Binger $124,723 1 0 0 Gus Hansen $123,895 1 0 0 Mark Gregorich $117,216 1 0 0 Stephen Wolff $117,216 1 0 0 Rep Porter $116,571 1 0 0 Todd Brunson $115,447 1 0 0 Allen Bari $113,030 1 0 0 Troy Burkholder $111,893 1 0 0 Justin Smith $110,073 1 0 0 Sebastian Ruthenberg $108,503 1 0 0 Viktor Blom $105,235 1 0 0 Greg Raymer $103,008 1 0 0 Tim Phan $103,008 1 0 0 David Chiu $99,590 1 0 0 Ilya Bulychev $98,330 1 0 0 Dario Sammartino $93,764 1 0 0 Chris Reslock $88,800 1 0 0 John Racener $87,010 1 0 0 Antanas 'Tony G' Guoga $83,630 1 0 0 John Kabbaj $72,914 1 0 0 Steve Billirakis $72,914 1 0 0 Randy Ohel $72,500 1 0 0 Yehuda Buchalter $72,500 1 0 0 Andrew Brown $72,078 1 0 0 Gary Benson $55,947 1 0 0 Last updated Saturday, June 29, 2019.
  19. There were three more brand-new World Series of Poker bracelet winners crowned on Monday, but all of that was overshadowed by the emergence of one Phil Ivey in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship. Ivey took full advantage of the Day 2 registration opportunity and built his stack up to the top of chip counts. He was joined in the field by Tom Dwan, making his 2019 WSOP debut. Dash Dudley Brings Home $10,000 PLO Championship "No more min-cash Dash," That's what Dash Dudley had to say after he beat James Park heads-up to win the $10,000 Pot Limit Omaha Championship for a seven-figure score and his first career WSOP bracelet. Despite starting with the chip lead, Dudley knew the volatility of PLO could cause havoc at the final table and was prepared for any scenario that presented itself. “I knew stuff might happen. People might get chips and I might get short. [But] I feel real confident in PLO, even short," Dudley said. "Everyone gets real impatient in PLO when they're short-stacked, and it causes them to make some crucial mistakes. People will justify it as coolers, but they're really getting the money in at 20% or 30%. There's a lot of spots you can avoid." Dudley's previous best WSOP result came in 2010 when he finished eighth for $67,221. Park earned $671,802 for his runner-up finish. Final Table Payouts Dash Dudley - $1,086,967 James Park - $671,802 Joel Feldman - $463,814 Jeremy Ausm- $325,693 Kyle Montgomery - $232,680 Eoghan O'Dea - $169,173 Andrei Razov - $125,215 Will Jaffe - $94,380 Santiago Soriano Wins $800 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack Spaniard Santiago Soriano laid a bad beat on Amir Lehavot to finish off the $800 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack event on Tuesday night to win the first bracelet of his career. On the final hand of the tournament, Soriano raised to 5,000,000 with [poker card="jc"][poker card="th"] and Lehavot called with [poker card="ac"][poker card="as"]. All the money went in after the [poker card="tc"][poker card="8d"][poker card="3s"] flop with Lehavot at risk. The [poker card="ts"] moved Soriano into the lead and the [poker card="3d"] river only improved his hand to win the tournament. “It was surprising (Lehavot) had that big of a hand,” said Soriano. “I flopped top pair, and heads-up, top pair is very, very good. Then I bet pretty big and he raises, and I bet all-in and he has the aces. It was unfortunate for him that the ten was in there on the turn, but it was really amazing." Lehavot earned $229,410, the third biggest score of his WSOP career behind his $10,000 Pot Limit Hold'em Championship win in 2011, and his third-place finish in the 2013 WSOP Main Event. Third place finisher Benjamin Underwood earned $168,960 and added another feather in his impressive summer. Underwood, from Port Elgin, Ontario, has five WSOP cashes this summer. Along with baby cashes in the Big 50 and the Millionaire Maker, Underwood finished fourth in the $600 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack, fifth in the $800 No Limit Hold'em Deepstack. Final Table Payouts Santiago Soriano - $371,203 Amir Lehavot - $229,410 Benjamin Underwood - $168,960 Nick Blackburn - $125,432 Joao Barrosovalli - $93,866 Samuel Gagnon - $70,813 Daniele Dangelo - $53,858 Ori Hasson - $41,300 Jeffery Tahler - $31,933 Kevin Gerhart Wins $1,500 Razz Event Kevin Gerhart did almost all of the heavy lifting at the $1,500 Razz final table on his way to winning the first bracelet of his career and $119,054. Gerhart eliminated six of the last seven players. The 29-year-old Ohio native had a simple goal for his 2019 WSOP. "My goal this summer was just to make a final table, and the first final table you make, you win a bracelet? That’s unreal," Gerhart said. Sergio Braga finished runner-up for $73,577. Scott Clements finished sixth for $17,440 and earned 320.2 WSOP Player of the Year points which moved him into fourth place behind Upeshka De Silva, Jason Gooch, and current leader Dan Zack. Final Table Payouts Kevin Gerhart - $119,054 Sergio Braga - $73,577 Joseph Hoffman - $49,762 Andres Norbe Korn - $34,352 Jean Said - $24,216 Scott Clements - $17,440 Robert Campbell - $12,837 Grzegorz Wyraz - $9,663 Phil Ivey Leads $50,000 Poker Players Championship to Day 3 Don't look now poker fans, but Phil Ivey has the chip lead in one of the most prestigious events on the WSOP schedule. Ivey finished Day 2 of the $50,000 Poker Players Championship with 1,253,500 chips to edge out John Hennigan for the lead. Hennigan, who won this event in 2014, ended with 1,209,000. Only two other players, Chris Vitch and 2019 Poker Hall of Fame nominee David Oppenheim, ended the day with more than 1,000,000 in the bag. Josh Arieh, who started Day 2 with the lead, finished with 939,000 and the fifth best stack. The 38 remaining players in the field include an almost overwhelming number of notables. Isaac Haxton, Daniel Cates, Luke Schwartz, Shaun Deeb, David 'ODB' Baker, Jason Mercier, Prahlad Friedman, and Phil Galfond on moved onto Day 3. Action resumes 2 PM PT. Top Chip Counts Phil Ivey - 1,253,500 John Hennigan - 1,209,000 Christopher Vitch - 1,103,000 David Oppenheim - 1,062,000 Josh Arieh - 939,000 David Benyamine - 937,000 Matthew Ashton - 911,000 Robert Mackie - 900,000 Jared Bleznick - 829,000 Isaac Haxton - 802,000 Monster Stack Down to Six; Benjamin Ector Leads Benjamin Ector could be just a few hours of poker away from winning his first WSOP bracelet. Ector finished Day 4 of the $1,500 Monster Stack event with 84,300,000 and the chip lead with just six players remaining. Kainalu McCue-Unciano, who lead this event after Day 2, sits second with 68,300,000. Gregory Katayama bagged up 55,100,000 for the third best stack. There were 49 players still chasing the bracelet when the day began. Some of the notables who didn't make it through the day were Andrew Moreno, Ryan Hughes, and Tom Koral. Kevin Roster, who is playing in the WSOP to raise awareness for Sarcoma research, finished 38th. Action resumes at Noon PT. Final Table Chip Counts Benjamin Ector - 84,300,000 Kainalu McCue-Unciano - 68,300,000 Gregory Katayama - 55,100,000 Bart Hanson - 40,600,000 Vincent Chauve - 36,700,000 Igor Yaroshevskyy - 17,000,000 35 Teams Remain in $1,000 Tag Team Event The team of Chad Gieger, Daniel Dayan, and Barak Wisbrod sit on top of the chip counts in the $1,000 Tag Team event with just 35 teams remaining, but if they look over their collective shoulders on Day 3, they're going to see a number of stone cold killers coming for them. Former #1 PocketFiver Steven van Zadelhoff and teammate Kenny Hallaert sit second, Tuan Le and Thanh Tran are third, and Jason Koon and Sosia Jiang are fourth. There were 278 teams at the start of the day. Some of the other players who managed to make it to Day 3 include Ryan Leng, Zachary Gruneberg, Florian Duta, and Jordan Cristos. The team of Jared Jaffee, Aaron Massey, and Ralph Massey started Day 2 with the chip lead and managed to make it to Day 3 but will be the shortest starting stack when play resumes at 1 PM PT. Top Chip Counts Chad Gieger / Daniel Dayan / Barak Wisbrod - 1,340,000 Kenny Hallaert / Steven van Zadelhoff - 1,129,000 Tuan Le / Thanh Tran - 1,121,000 Jason Koon / Sosia Jiang - 1,072,000 Nicolas Betbese / Leandro Bianchini / Martin Pineiro - 1,003,000 Ryan Leng / Lisa Leng / Nikki Grandt / Ilana Grandt - 1,001,000 Lukasz Jankowski / Mateusz Rypulak / Jacek Pustula - 786,000 Brett Murray / Bobby Poe - 688,000 Michael Elbilia / Juan Endara - 686,000 Jerod Smith / Matthew Moreno / Lawrence Chan - 674,000 Dan Matsuzuki Leads $600 NLHE Deepstack Championship Dan Matsuzuki won his lone WSOP bracelet last summer in a $10,000 buy-in Championship event. This summer it seems he's set on putting on a show at a lower price point. Matsuzuki finished Day 1 of the $600 NLHE Deepstack Championship with 868,000 and the chip lead. This comes a week after he finished runner-up in the $600 NLHE/PLO Deepstack event. Dianlei Zhang finished with the next biggest stack at 790,000 and Bobby Oboodi is right behind him at 764,000. The event drew 6,140 entries for a $3,223,500 prize pool. The event originally had a $500,000 guarantee. Some of the 919 players moving onto Day 2 include Asi Moshe, Aleksandr Merzhvinskii, Chris Moorman, Joe Kuether, Greg Raymer, Jessica Dawley, Alex Foxen, and Kelly Minkin. Day 2 gets underway at Noon PT. Top Chip Counts Dan Matsuzuki - 868,000 Dianlei Zhang - 790,000 Bobby Oboodi - 764,000 Mohammed Suhail - 729,000 Eric Rivkin - 718,000 Siagzar Payvar - 678,000 Yuwen Pan - 659,000 Olin Biddy - 638,000 Jacob Klein - 635,000 Andres Jeckeln - 625,000 Ray Medlin Tops Day 1 of $1,500 PLO Hi-Lo While the tables were mostly full of No Limit Hold'em players in the $600 Deepstack Championship, 1,117 players managed to find a place to play the $15,000 Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo event. Ray Medlin finished with the biggest stack of the 417 survivors. Fresh off of winning his first career bracelet, Ari Engel bagged up 216,200 for the fourth best stack heading into Day 2. Nick Guagenti, Scott Clements, Jeremy Ausmus, James Obst, Ben Yu, Chris Bjorin, Ray Henson, Frank Kassela, and Mike Sexton were just a handful of the notables who finished Day 1 with chips. Day 2 gets underway at 2 PM PT. Top Chip Counts Ray Medlin - 240,100 Richard Bai - 225,200 Danny Woolard - 217,500 Ari Engel - 216,200 Stephen Moreschi - 208,200 Blaz Zerjav - 207,400 Philipp Eirisch - 188,100 Warren Sheaves - 183,200 Robert Slezak - 175,100 Alex Scattareggia - 174,200
  20. On Friday night in Las Vegas, Phil Hui won arguably the most prestigious poker tournament in the world, the World Series of Poker $50,000 Poker Players Championship, earning $1.099 million in prize money, the coveted gold bracelet, and the respect of the game’s elite. "This is my dream," Hui said in the moments after victory. "I’d rather win this than the Main Event. Obviously the money for the Main Event would be amazing, but this is incredible. You have to be well-versed in every single game. It’s a dream come true. This is the one tournament I wanted to win, and play. It’s only the second time I’ve played it. Just to be lucky enough to play it, it’s incredible." With the victory, Hui joins the esteemed company of David 'Chip' Reese, Michael ‘The Grinder’ Mirzachi, Brian Rast, and John Hennigan, among others, as a champion of the event. "My name doesn’t belong there yet," a humble Hui said when asked about being in such exclusive company. "I’m happy it’s there, but I need to do a lot more to be in a group with those guys." This year, the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship drew 74 of the top players in the game, and Hui had to battle with all of them over a grueling five days of play. In the end, it came down to Hui and Josh Arieh for the title. Entering heads-up play, Arieh had the lead with 16.2 million in chips to Hui’s 6 million. Although he was down nearly 3-1, Hui stood tough and immediately began working to close the gap. The heads-up match between Hui and Arieh saw the chip lead change several times, as the two went back and forth over the course of several hours. One player would gain the lead and start to pull away, but then the other would fight back and do the same. Over and over. Eventually, though, Hui stretched out to a lead that Arieh couldn’t come back from thanks to some big pots in the stud games. The final hand was in 2-7 triple draw, with Hui made a [poker card="9x"][poker card="5x"][poker card="4x"][poker card="3x"][poker card="2x"]. Arieh had a [poker card="6x"][poker card="5x"][poker card="2x"] and drew a [poker card="3x"] and an [poker card="Ax"] to make an inferior hand. With that, Arieh was eliminated in second place for $679,246. The triumph came in Hui’s ninth cash of the 2019 WSOP, and it was the third final table he had made this summer. Entering the event, Hui’s results had him in the top 25 of the WSOP Player of the Year race with 1,541.83 points. He can now add another 1,265.67 to that for 2,807.5 total. That puts him right there behind current leader Dan Zack and throws another top contender right into the thick of this hotly contested race. “I want to win Player of the Year,” Hui said. “That was my main goal going into this year. I was going to play everything I could and try to make deep runs, so Player of the Year is first on the list.” Final Table Results 1st: Phil Hui - $1,099,311 2nd: Josh Arieh - $679,246 3rd: John Esposito - $466,407 4th: Bryce Yockey - $325,989 5th: Shaun Deeb - $232,058 6th: Dan Cates - $168,305 From the field of 74, only the top 12 would make the money. Late on Day 3, Arieh finished off Chris Klodnicki in 13th place to send him home on the bubble. That ended play for the day with Phil Ivey atop the final 12 competitors. Day 4 couldn’t have gone worse for Ivey. He lost almost every hand he played, included one when he folded a winning low in a seven-card stud hi-lo hand that would’ve won him half the pot. Ivey ultimately finished in eighth place for $124,410 in what was his fourth career cash in the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship. Those four cashes have earned Ivey $1.013 million from this event. The four players to hit the rail before Ivey were, in order, Andrew Brown, Talal Shakerchi, Chris Vitch, and Dario Sammartino. For Vitch, it was his second in-the-money finish in the event in as many years. Last summer, Vitch took 11th. Sammartino was recently featured on PocketFives as part of the 'No Gold Club: Best Players Without a World Series of Poker Bracelet.' He came close once again with his run in this event but ultimately fell short with a ninth-place finish. The final elimination on Day 4 was David Oppenheim, a finalist for the Poker Hall of Fame this year. He was eliminated in seventh place by both Bryce Yockey and John Esposito. On the fifth and final day, Dan Cates hit the rail first in sixth place, then it was defending WSOP Player of the Year Shaun Deeb falling in fifth. It was Arieh who busted Cates and Esposito who knocked out Deeb. Yockey, who was making his first-ever cash in the $50,000 Poker Players Championship, busted in fourth place to Arieh in a hand of 2-7 triple draw that will go down as one of the wildest hands the WSOP has ever seen. Arieh had raised on the button, Yockey three-bet from the small blind, and Arieh made the call. Yockey stood pat, but Arieh drew two. Yockey then bet, and Arieh called. Yockey was pat again, and Arieh drew one on the second draw. Yockey bet, and Arieh called. Yockey stood pat and Arieh drew one card again. Yockey was dealt number two - [poker card="7x"][poker card="6x"][poker card="4x"][poker card="3x"][poker card="2x"] - and fired the last of his chips into the middle. Arieh peeled his last card to reveal a seven to make a number one - [poker card="7x"][poker card="5x"][poker card="4x"][poker card="3x"][poker card="2x"] - and called to win the pot. Esposito went out next in third, also making his maiden voyage into the money of the tournament. Once again it was Arieh who ended the run, this time in a hand of pot-limit Omaha. Arieh flopped top and bottom pair on the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="8d"][poker card="7h"] flop against Esposito's [poker card="Ah"][poker card="Ad"][poker card="Kd"][poker card="4d"]. Arieh had the [poker card="Kh"][poker card="7s"][poker card="6d"][poker card="4c"] and held with the [poker card="Jc"] turn and [poker card="6s"] river.
  21. As the launch of Pennsylvania online poker approaches, PocketFives takes a look at how players from that state did at the 2019 World Series of Poker. Pennsylvania poker players accounted for 2,439 total entries at the 2019 WSOP, ranking the state 15th out of all states to have players participate in the series. Per official numbers sourced from the WSOP, US-player participation made up for 129,154 entries from live tournaments at the 2019 WSOP. With 2,439 of those entries coming from PA poker players, Pennsylvania accounted for nearly 2% of the US participation at the 2019 WSOP. Pennsylvania’s participation wasn’t that far off of what New Jersey’s was, another state with legalized online gambling and online poker. Players from NJ accounted for 3,501 total entries in live events at the 2019 WSOP, which was just more than 2.7% overall. US players accounted for 18,571 cashes at the 2019 WSOP, which was the most for any single country. Players from Pennsylvania accounted for 338 of those cashes, including some of the top performers below. Pennsylvania's Top Performers at the 2019 WSOP Of all the Pennsylvania poker players to compete at the 50th annual WSOP, Garry Gates was the highest earner with $3,006,881 won. The bulk of Gates’ winnings came via his fourth-place finish in the WSOP Main Event, a score worth $3,000,000 that landed Gates in the top 10 of the Pennsylvania all-time money list. Gates also cashed in the $1,500 Monster Stack and $1,000 Mini Main Event at the 2019 WSOP. Thomas Parkes of Alburtis, PA, finished 59th in the 2019 WSOP Main Event and took home $142,215. He was the second-highest finisher from the Keystone State. Chad Power (89th - $82,365) and Kenny Smaron (92nd - $69,636) also placed in the top 100. Jake Schindler, the PA poker all-time money list leader at time of writing, cashed three times at the 2019 WSOP. His first was a fifth-place finish in the $10,000 Heads-Up Championship worth $31,151, his second was in the WSOP.com $500 Turbo Deepstack for $1,113, and his third was a 67th-place result in the WSOP Main Event for $117,710. Joe McKeehen, winner of the 2015 WSOP Main Event and second on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list, cashed just once at the 2019 WSOP. He finished 65th in the $1,500 Millionaire Maker event. John Hennigan, who is originally from Philadelphia, only cashed one time at the 2019 World Series of Poker, but that cash was a victory in the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship to the tune of $245,451. Hennigan defeated Daniel Negreanu in heads-up play to win that tournament. Matt Glantz, the player who was fourth on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list at time of writing, finished in the money of seven WSOP events in the summer of 2019. His best finish was a third-place result in the $10,000 Dealer’s Choice Championship for $139,126. He also had a deep run in the WSOP Main Event, finishing 205th for $50,855. PA Players in the WSOP Big 50 In the record-breaking WSOP Big 50, 345 entries came from Pennsylvania poker players. Of the 28,371 entries, PA poker players made up 1.22% of the total field. As it pertains to US participation in the Big 50, US players made up 23,972 entries in this tournament, meaning Pennsylvania players accounted for 1.44% of US participation in the Big 50. The highest finish in the Big 50 for a Pennsylvania player came from Fabio Garofalo. Garofalo, who hails from Mercer, PA, took 66th and turned a $500 entry into $14,958. Pennsylvania’s Gregory Fishberg (90th - $10,233) and James Gilbert (98th - $8,539) also placed in the top 100 of the 2019 WSOP Big 50. PA Online Poker Gives Potential for More WSOP Participation With the launch of PA online poker looming, exciting times are ahead. Legal, regulated online poker platforms in the Keystone State should help grow the game in the region and be a catalyst for increased participation by Pennsylvania players in the WSOP. Although it will take some time for the state to get up to speed with the likes of its neighbor, New Jersey, Pennsylvania's upside is quite large. New Jersey has a growing online poker market in the 11th most populated state in the country with nearly 9 million people to pull from. Pennsylvania will be drawing from the fifth largest population of nearly 13 million people when online poker goes live. The potential is there and it wouldn't be out of the question to see Pennsylvania's WSOP participation meet or surpass that of New Jersey's in 2020 or 2021.
  22. As the launch of Pennsylvania online poker nears, PocketFives takes a look at the top 10 of the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list. The list includes a World Series of Poker Main Event champion, one other WSOP gold bracelet winner, a couple of World Poker Tour winners, and a European Poker Tour champion. The leader falls under none of these categories, though, but he does top the list in a big way with more than $24 million in live tournament earnings. Pennsylvania Poker All-Time Money List Jake Schindler - $24,659,374 Joseph McKeehen - $16,224,026 John Hennigan - $8,472,252 Matt Glantz - $7,110,451 Daniel Ott - $4,726,701 Matt Berkey - $4,152,310 Russell Thomas - $3,770,309 Michael Martin - $3,305,970 Aaron Mermelstein - $3,246,815 Garry Gates - $3,243,129 Jake Schindler Jake Schindler and his career live tournament earnings of more than $24.6 million tops the PA poker all-time money list, and the gap between him and second place is quite large. Schindler is originally from Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, just west of Philadelphia. It’s a suburb of Philadelphia with a population of only few thousand people. Schindler’s largest live tournament score to date comes in at $3.6 million for when he finished second to Christoph Vogelsang in the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl in 2017. He also has scores of $1.192 million from winning the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 High Roller, $2.151 million for winning the 2018 partypoker MILLIONS Grand Final Barcelona €100,000 Super High Roller, and $1.332 million for winning the WPT Five Diamond $100,000 Super High Roller in 2018. Not only does Schindler’s more than $24.6 million put him on top of Pennsylvania’s all-time money list, but it has him ranked in the top 15 of the United States all-time money list and top 25 of the overall all-time money list. Joseph McKeehen Coming in at #2 on Pennsylvania’s all-time money list is 2015 WSOP Main Event champion Joseph McKeehen with more than $16.2 million in live tournament earnings. Of those winnings, $7.683 million came when McKeehen topped a field of 6,420 entries in poker’s most prestigious event, the WSOP Main Event. McKeehen is originally from North Wales, Pennsylvania. It’s a small town in the southeast corner of the Keystone State. McKeehen proved his wasn’t just a one-hit wonder when, in 2017, he won his second WSOP gold bracelet in the $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship, scoring $311,817. McKeehen also has a WSOP Circuit Main Event title to his name. McKeehen’s second biggest score came from the 2016 PCA $100,000 Super High Roller. In that event, he finished second to Bryn Kenney for $1.22 million. John Hennigan One of the most well-known poker players in the world, John Hennigan, comes in at #3 on Pennsylvania’s all-time money list. He has $8.472 million in live tournament earnings. Hennigan has loads of big scores and triumphant victories on his résumé, but it’s the six WSOP gold bracelets and one WPT title that really stick out. Hennigan’s largest career score is his World Poker Tour win, coming in 2007 at the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open when he won $1.606 million. His second biggest score came in 2014 when he won the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship to the tune of $1.517 million. That WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship win came just one year after he finished third in the same event for $686,568. In 2018, Hennigan took second in the WSOP $50,000 Poker Players Championship for $765,837. Hennigan is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Matt Glantz Matt Glantz, from Lafayette Hill, Pennsylvania, comes in at #4 on the list with $7.11 million in live tournament earnings. His biggest live tournament score came from the European Poker Tour London £20,500 High Roller. He won that event for what converted to $862,837. In 2008, Glantz took fourth in the WSOP $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. event for $568,320, and in 2014 he finished fifth in the PCA $100,000 Super High Roller for $445,520. Glantz has a handful of WSOP final tables on record, but to date, he’s yet to win a WSOP gold bracelet. His closest was in 2005 when he took second in the WSOP $3,000 No Limit Hold’em tournament for $364,620. Daniel Ott Almost smack dead in the center of Pennsylvania is Altoona, where Daniel Ott is from. Ott comes in at #5 on PA’s all-time money list with $4.726 million in live tournament earnings. Nearly all of that, $4.7 million worth, comes from a single score. In 2017, Ott made the final table of the WSOP Main Event and finished second to Scott Blumstein for $4.7 million. Elsewhere on Ott’s résumé, you’ll find a bunch of WSOP cashes, all for small amounts, and an MSPT cash, but that’s it. Matt Berkey Originally from Leechburg, Pennsylvania, Matt Berkey is one of poker’s most popular players. He has more than $4.15 million in live tournament earnings, but that could change rather quickly for as big as he plays. Berkey is a regular in some of poker’s priciest tournaments, including the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl, which he took fifth in in 2016 for $1.1 million. That’s Berkey’s only seven-figure score to date, but he has several six-figures cashes and it seems like only a matter of time before he nets another cash of a million dollars or more. Russell Thomas Like Ott, the bulk of Russell Thomas’ career live tournament earnings come from a final table in the WSOP Main Event. Thomas has more than $3.77 million in earnings, which lands him #7 on the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list. More than $2.85 million of that comes from a fourth-place finish in the 2012 WSOP Main Event. Thomas is originally from Wallingford, Pennsylvania, which is located in the southeast corner of the state. Michael Martin You won’t see Michael Martin on the poker circuit much these days, but he did well to amass more than $3.3 million in live tournament earnings. Nearly all of Martin’s live tournament cashes come from 2006 to 2010, with one very small cash coming in each of 2013 and 2019. Martin’s biggest score came when he won the European Poker Tour London Main Event in 2008 for more than $1.8 million. Prior to that, earlier in the same year, he banked $666,171 for a fifth-place finish in the EPT Grand Final in Monte Carlo. Martin is originally from Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania. Aaron Mermelstein Philadelphia’s Aaron Mermelstein is still very much grinding the tournament circuit, and with more than $3.25 million in live earnings, he’s #9 on the Pennsylvania all-time money list. Mermelstein doesn’t have a seven-figure score on record, to date, but he does hold two WPT titles. He won both in 2015, topping the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open for $712,305, his largest score ever, and then winning the WPT Maryland Live! tournament for $250,222. Another big score for Mermelstein came when he won the WPT Seminole Hard Rock Poker Showdown $25,000 High Roller event in 2019 for $618,955. Garry Gates Titusville’s Garry Gates is a newcomer to the Pennsylvania poker all-time money list, thanks to his fourth-place finish in the 2019 WSOP Main Event for $3 million. Gates, a longtime member of the poker industry on both the media and corporate side, now has four WSOP Main Event cashes. Gates’ second-biggest score is a fourth-place finish in the 2012 WSOP Circuit Atlantic City Main Event for $64,530. Gates’ hometown of Titusville is home to notable football player and coach, John Heisman.
  23. Another televised World Poker Tour final table is set. This time, it’s the Season XVIII WPT L.A. Poker Classic. The event drew 490 entries to Commerce Casino and generated a prize pool of $4.727 million. Just six players remain and they’ll be on hiatus until action resumes at the HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas on Thursday, April 2. Leading the way in the chase for the $1.015 million top prize is Balakrishna Patur. Patur brings 6.32 million in chips to the final table. He’ll be joined by two WPT Champions Club members in Matas Cimbolas and James Carroll, Ka Kwan Lau, Scott Hempel, and WPTDeepStacks champion Upeshka De Silva. De Silva will be the short stack with 930,000 when action resumes in April. WPT LAPC Final Table Seat 1: Scott Hempel - 1,670,000 Seat 2: James Carroll - 4,125,000 Seat 3: Matas Cimbolas - 4,310,000 Seat 4: Ka Kwan Lau - 2,250,000 Seat 5: Upeshka De Silva- 930,000 Seat 6: Balakrishna Patur - 6,320,000 [ptable zone="Global Poker Article Ad"][ptable zone="GG Poker"][ptable zone="Party Poker NJ"] Each of the six is guaranteed a minimum payday of $185,330. Included in the event’s first-place prize is a $15,000 seat to the season-ending WPT Tournament of Champions presented by Baccarat Crystal. How the Final Table Was Reached Day 1 saw Demo Kiriopoulos emerge as the event’s chip leader when the first day of play was in the books. Then it was Isaac Baron atop the field at the end of Day 2. Entering Day 3, 104 players remained and the top 62 were set to reach the money. With 63 players left, WPT Champions Club member Jordan Cristos was all in against fellow WPT champion Daniel Strelitz. According to the WPT Live Updates team, Cristos was all in with the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="8c"] on the [poker card="8d"][poker card="6d"][poker card="6s"] flop. Strelitz had made the call with the [poker card="Td"][poker card="9d"]. The [poker card="Jh"] on the turn and 8h on the river allowed Cristos to double up, but that would be the last time he doubled up this tournament. Shortly thereafter, still on the money bubble with 63 players remaining, Cristos was all in on the [poker card="Js"][poker card="8s"][poker card="5d"] flop with the [poker card="Ad"][poker card="Jd"]. His opponent, Claude Codru, had the [poker card="Ks"][poker card="Ts"]. Once again, it was Cristos needing to fade a draw. This time, the [poker card="Qs"] came right out on the turn and gave Codru an unbeatable flush. The river completed the board with the [poker card="2d"] and Cristos was sent home as the "bubble boy." Once in the money, the eliminations began to stack up, including Barry Greenstein (61st - $16,905), Jesse Sylvia (55th - $18,845), and Lee Markholt (41st - $21,290). To close out Day 3, 39 players remained with Patur on top of the pack. Day 4 saw the field whittled down to 11 players. Baron remained in contention and finished Day 4 as the chip leader, with Hempel sitting second and Patur sitting third. Donald Maloney (37th - $24,375), John Hennigan (34th - $24,375), JC Tran (29th - $28,275), and Dylan Linde (14th - $58,215) were among the casualties on Day 4. Baron couldn’t get anything going on Day 5, though, and he fell in 11th place for $71,950. Charles Kassin and Lau both scored early double ups through Baron, and then De Silva picked off a bluff from Baron. On his final hand, Baron held pocket eights against Hempel’s pocket tens but could not come from behind. Hempel also knocked out WPT Champions Club member Kevin Eyster in 10th place. Strelitz went bust in eighth, and his elimination came in a three-way clash of WPT champions involving Carroll and Cimbolas. Strelitz was all in preflop with side action between Carroll and Cimbolas. On the [poker card="Kc"][poker card="Ts"][poker card="8c"] flop, Cimbolas bet 300,000 and Carroll shoved for more than 5 million. Cimbolas called all in for 1.56 million total with the [poker card="As"][poker card="Ah"]. Carroll had the [poker card="Ac"][poker card="2c"] and then Strelitz had the [poker card="Td"][poker card="9d"]. The turn was the [poker card="4s"] and the river was the [poker card="3s"], keeping Cimbolas’ aces in front and eliminating Strelitz. After Strelitz busted, Shi Chen was sent packing in seventh place to set the official TV final table. Play Resumes in April Guaranteed $185,330 each with the chance to win $1.015 million, the final six players in the WPT L.A. Poker Classic will resume action on Thursday, April 2, at the HyperX Esports Arena in Las Vegas. The WPT L.A. Poker Classic final table is the third delayed final table during Season XVIII of the World Poker Tour. Taking place in the days before it are the finales to the WPT Gardens Poker Championship and WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open. Chance Kornuth leads the WPT Gardens Poker Championship final table, with action set to resume on Tuesday, March 31. Veerab Zakarian leads the WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open final table, with action set to resume on Wednesday, April 1. All three of these final tables - the WPT Gardens Poker Championship, WPT Borgata Winter Poker Open, and WPT L.A. Poker Classic - will play out at the HyperX Esports Arena at the Luxor Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
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