Phil Hellmuth has finally done it! The 57-year-old Poker Hall of Fame member won his record-extending sixteenth WSOP gold bracelet on Sunday after taking down WSOP Event #31: $1,500 No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw at the Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino for an impressive $84,851 in top prize!
“I’ve wanted a Deuce To Seven bracelet ever since the 1980’s since it was the coolest bracelet to win because it’s the one tournament that Chip [Reese] and Doyle [Brunson] showed up for. All the big-name poker players, Billy Baxter, all the champions showed up for that,” Hellmuth said.
“..I wanted that bracelet so badly.” “And so I’ve been fighting so ****ing hard for this bracelet for so long in the Deuce to Seven…but yeah, it feels really good,” he added.
Hellmuth topped the 272-entry field to make his fourth final table of the series. He started the day second in chips and had a roller-coaster ride with an up-and-down day in chip counts. He survived to the final table as one of the chip leaders. After the FT was reached, he outlasted the likes of Dario Sammartino, Rep Porter, Chris Vitch and finally Jake Schwartz playing for his first gold bracelet.
Unsurprisingly, the shortest-stacked Kevin Gerhart was the first player to be busted from the final table and he was eliminated in eighth place by Rep Porter. Following him were Jason Lipiner who was sent to the rails in seventh place by Joshua Faris, and Dario Sammartino busted by Rep Porter.
The next player to fall from the final table was Joshua Faris whose 10-9-7-4-3 ran into the 10-8-6-4-3 of two-time bracelet winner Christopher Vitch. Faris took home $18,421 for his fifth-place showing.
Three-time bracelet winner Rep Porter entered the final day as the outright chip leader. He lost a big pot against Jake Schwartz during four-handed play. Porter finally called all-in facing a shove from Schwartz. Schwartz drew two with 10-7-4 and Porter took one with his Q-10-8-5. Schwartz drew up 2-A to improve to a 10-7, leaving Porter drawing dead. Porter earned $25,661 for his 4th place finish.
A few minutes later, Vitch shoved and Hellmuth called. Both players drew one card. Hellmuth made a 9-8-7-3-2, which bested the 10-7-6-4-2 of Vitch (3rd for $36,387). With that, Hellmuth entered the heads-up battle with Schwartz, who held 3,900,000 chips against 3,100,000 held by Hellmuth.
While Hellmuth began the heads-up battle at a slight chip deficit, he quickly managed to turn it in his favour with a commanding four-to-one chip lead. Thereafter, he did not allow Schwartz to gain control and won the coveted sixteenth bracelet and an impressive $84,851 in the top prizemoney.
On the final hand of the tournament, Hellmuth shoved all-in from the button and Schwartz called off his stack from the big blind. Schwartz drew one and Hellmuth aked for two. Schwartz showed 10-4-3-2 and was facing a 9-8-2 draw. The two finally agreed to let Hellmuth sweat his cards first. He picked up a 5 and then a 7, improving to a winning 9-8-7-5-2 low to leave Schwartz drawing dead. Schwartz ended up with a pair of fours and was eliminated in second place, earning $52,502.
Just after the historic win, Hellmuth stood from his seat and lifted two fists in the air. He then made his way over to the rail where his wife and friend Mike Matusow were waiting to congratulate him. Two dozen fans took photos and cheered as Hellmuth won his record sixteenth WSOP bracelet.
Final Table Payouts (USD)
- Phil Hellmuth – $84,851
- Jake Schwartz – $52,502
- Chris Vitch – $36,387
- Rep Porter – $25,661
- Joshua Faris – $18,421
- Dario Sammartino – $13,463
- Jason Lipiner – $10,023
- Kevin Gerhart – $7,602