Another round-up from the World Series of Poker this time focusing on a record 15th bracelet win for Phil Hellmuth, as the Poker Brat once again proves that despite his childish tantrums he knows how to win a sliver of gold.
Phil Hellmuth is like a speck of sand in Giza. But if you drink the liquid left for Alice and become small enough to walk through the tiny door that leads to the poker world, the full majesty of Hellmuth comes into view, from a speck of sand to one of the Seven Wonders of the World. And at this rate, when it comes to lay him to rest, Hellmuth will be surrounded by more gold than a Pharoah’s final resting place.
It’s not been the best series for the man who owns the thing.
That’s not enough for a man who has won 14 bracelets.
And then came the outburst at the Main Event.
All the hate.
“It felt like such a low point in my career,” Hellmuth would later tell PokerNews when reflecting on his treatment of James Campbell.
And then an insight into the thinking of the man, and perhaps why he manages to defy all the criticism and keep winning bracelet after bracelet.
“Then I said: the only thing I can do is buy him into the Main Event and that’s gonna make me feel better. So I bought him in, and I went from 400 negative tweets to 600 positive tweets in one day. It’s the swingiest week in my life; from people cheering because I busted too — I think — a lot of people cheering that I won.”
“That’s gonna make me feel better.”
It’s always about him, and while the world will appreciate that behaviour as much as waking up to find a nuclear power plant setting up next to your kid’s school, it works in the poker world.
A zero-sum game.
You or them.
It’s always about Hellmuth when you’re Hellmuth.
It’s the ego of the man, but without it, who would he be?
Not a mighty pyramid.
Maybe a grain of sand.
Phil Hellmuth Wins Event #71: $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em (30-Minute Levels)
452 people paid the pricey $5,000.
39 were left, including nine bracelet winners with 26 between them inflated by the 14 Hellmuth has dotted around the homes of those he loves the most.
The Belgian Jonathan Abdellatif had the chip lead with 754,000.
Chance Kornuth (622,000), Paul Hoefer (579,000), Liv Boeree (534,000), Steven Wolansky (498,000), Phil Hellmuth (468,000), Jeremy Ausmus (160,000), Anthony Zinno (129,000), Davidi Kitai (58,000) and Gregory Kolo (50,000) were the other bracelet winners in the hunt for more gold.
The first player who lost his footing on the cliff face of this thing was Gregory Kolo, but there is no news of his exit, in the PokerNews $5k portfolio. The three-time World Poker Tour (WPT) Champion, Anthony Zinno, busted to Chi Zhang AJ>KJ when Zhang rivered a flush. And one of Hellmuth’s former sparring partners, David Kitai busted when his trash lost to the garbage of Farid Jattin.
Boeree was the next big star to leave the tournament when she found a set of fours at the same time Hellmuth found a set of eights. That hand left her with chip dust but plenty of lust, only for Shawn Daniels to bleed her dry QQ>83o.
Alan Sternberg eliminated the double Main Event attendee, Antoine Saout AK>A5. Chance Kornuth took out the dangerous Igor Yaroshevskyy QQ>AQ. And Hellmuth severed the head of another perilous python when he beat Koray Aldemir when all-in pre TT>A6o.
Eric Hicks dumped the delightful Daryll Fish over the wrong side of the rail QQ>T5s. Alan Sternberg sent the overnight chip leader Abdellatif to the cash desk A8>Q4. And Hellmuth continued to amass chips eliminating Shawn Daniels AA>AQ.
Steven Wolansky began to look a serious threat when he disposed of Chance Kornuth’s body A2>93o, and A8>QJs in a double hand karate chop combo. Hellmuth sent Grayson Ramage packing in 17th place: JJ>A6. And Hicks sent the dangerous Griffin Benger to the rail in 15th place when his KTo dominated the QTo of the former Nov Niner.
Sternberg took out Ausmus in 12th place when his A3o beat K3o. Glantz eliminated Petar Kalev in 11th, J4>J2. And a final table of nine turned up when Aliaksei Boika killed the tournament hopes of Eric Hicks and Paul Fontan when his KK beat QQ & KJo.
Final Table Chip Counts
1. Alan Sternberg – 2,610,000
2. Phil Hellmuth – 1,925,000
3. Paul Hoefer – 1,560,000
4. Aliaksei Boika – 1,435,000
5. Matt Glantz – 1,400,000
6. Ken Fishman – 1,040,000
7. Ralph Wong – 670,000
8. Steven Polansky – 530,000
Wolansky decided the short stack wasn’t for him when he eliminated Ralph Wong A9s>55 to move up to 1.6m. Chip leader, Sternberg took out the former bracelet winner, Hoefer, when KK dismantled JTo. And we were down to five when Boika took out Glantz J6>J4 on A64 with Glantz searching for a flush draw that remained as lost as Lord Lucan.
Boika took the chip lead after eliminating Glantz, and the Belarusian extended that lead when he sent Ken Fishman home $100,956 the richer A4>86s. And then the beginning of the end for Boika: Sternberg doubling through the chip leader 99>A9 to send him tumbling into a coffin. And Wolansky nailed it shut KK>AK to send Boika out in fourth.
1. Wolansky – 5,000,000
2. Sternberg – 4,800,000
3. Hellmuth 1,600,000
Hellmuth doubled through Sternberg A5>KK when he flopped an ace and turned a five. And then we reached heads-up when Wolanksy sent Sternberg and his impressive Gimli like beard to the rail when AQ beat J9s.
Heads Up Chip Counts
Wolansky – 8,600,000
Hellmuth – 2,700,000
Hellmuth doubled quickly AK>QT to move within 1.3m of Wolansky. But Wolansky pulled ahead to create a distance of 3.5:1 between the pair. Then the 14-time champion fought back before doubling into the lead KT>KJ when a ten appeared on the river.
Fortunate favours the man who gets there more than anyone else.
It’s his house.
A few hands later and it was all over.
The pair got it in with Hellmuth’s pocket treys trying to avoid aces and nines. The nine appeared in the window, but a trey and deuce joined it, and Hellmuth’s rail went into barmy mode.
“It’s humbling,” Hellmuth told PokerNews after his record 15th win.
Final Table Results
1. Phil Hellmuth – $485,082
2. Steven Wolansky – $299,807
3. Alan Sternberg – $204,789
4. Aliaksei Boika – $142,458
5. Ken Fishman – $100,956
6. Matt Glantz – $72,911
7. Paul Hoefer – $53,682
8. Ralph Wong – $40,309
9. Eric Hicks – $30,881
68 players earned enough money to buy a pet wolf cub including the bracelet winner, Jeremy Ausmus (12th), the former Irish Poker Open winner Griffin Benger (15th), and the recent WSOP.com Online High Roller winner, Chance Kornuth (18th).