Share this on

Phil Hellmuth’s continued his assault on poker history on Monday by winning the $10,000 Razz Championship for his 14th career WSOP bracelet. Meanwhile, John Gale came back from a four-year hiatus due to a brain tumor and won his second career bracelet in the $1,000 Turbo NL Hold’em.

Poker Hall of Famer and WSOP bracelet winner Mike Sexton is among the notables heading into the final day of the Millionaire Maker while Keven Stammen leads heading into Day 3 of the $3,000 Limit Hold’em Six-Max.

Phil Hellmuth Wins $10k Razz Championship for 14th Bracelet

Phil Hellmuth had been struggling at the 2015 World Series of Poker heading into the $10k Razz Championship. He hadn’t recorded a single cash and some wondered if this World Series would be his worst ever. Then he decided he would win another Razz bracelet.

Phil Hellmuth was third in chips with 12 remaining heading into the final day of the $10,000 Razz Championship. Other players in contention were Mike Leah, Thomas Keller, Mike Gorodinsky and eight-time bracelet winner Erik Seidel.

The first order of business was to reach the final table. Despite starting the day fourth in chips, Erik Seidel was the second player knocked out and finished in ninth. Shaun Deeb was the final table bubble boy, finishing in ninth. He was all-in on fifth against Phil Hellmuth with a made nine and drawing to a seven. Hellmuth held a made nine with a wheel draw. Hellmuth caught his wheel and Deeb was eliminated.

After Deeb’s elimination, Hellmuth started the final table as chip leader. Here’s how the final eight players were stacked at the beginning of final table action:

  • Seat 1: Jryi Merivirta – 212,000
  • Seat 2: Mike Gorodinsky – 559,000
  • Seat 3: Stephen Chidwick – 168,000
  • Seat 4: Adam Owen – 460,000
  • Seat 5: Thomas Keller – 577,000
  • Seat 6: Mike Leah – 362,000
  • Seat 7: Brandon Shack-Harris – 182,000
  • Seat 8: Phil Hellmuth – 610,000

Hellmuth was either chip leader or second in chips for most of the final table. As play continued, Mike Gorodinsky became the table terminator. He eliminated Thomas Keller, Mike Leah and Adam Owen on the way to a heads-up showdown against Hellmuth.

At the start of heads-up play, Gorodinsky held 1.96 million to just 1.1 million for Hellmuth. Gorodinsky is also a former bracelet winner but has nowhere near the experience on the big stage as Hellmuth.

Hellmuth started the match by grinding away at Gorodinsky’s stack. By the time the 50k/100k level was reach, Hellmuth had taken the chip lead. The pair battled for the remainder of the level and by the start of 60k/120k, Gorodinsky had retaken the lead.

At this level, a couple of big hands can tip the scales and fortune smiled on Hellmuth during the level. After taking the chip lead, Hellmuth pulled down a massive pot after rivering a sixty-four against what looked to be a draw to a seven by Gorodinsky. This left him with less than four big bets.

After managing to gain back a few bets, Gorodinsky was crippled in a massive cooler hand. On sixth, Hellmuth’s board was 3-K-5-J against 4-2-8-3 for Gorodinsky. On the river, Gorodinsky checked his super strong board and Hellmuth incredibly fires 120,000. Gorodinsky called and Hellmuth showed A-7-4 in the hole for a seventy-five. Gorodinsky showed J-7-6 for a seventy-six and was left with less than a big bet.

After doubling-up twice to about two big-bet, Gorodinsky get his remaining chips in on fourth street. On sixth, he is showing 10-2-5-4-10-Q for a Q-10 with a redraw to a 10-4. Hellmuth held 7-6-4-K-10-2 for a 10-7 and redraw to a seventy-six. Hellmuth turned over his river card first and it was an ace to give him his seventy-six and Gorodinsky was drawing dead.

Tournament over, drought over and history extended. Phil Hellmuth has won his record-extending 14th gold bracelet and $271,105. Congratulations.

John Gale Wins $1,000 Turbo NL Hold’em Event

The final day of the $1,000 Turbo NL Hold’em Event kicked off on Monday with 29 players returning in hopes of making the final table and taking down the bracelet. Gregory Kolo started the day as chip leader while John Gale was second in chips and looking for his second career bracelet in this event.

Despite starting the day as chip leader, Gregory Kolo finished this event as the final table bubble boy. In his final hand, he ran Ah-5h into the pocket nines of Mark Darner. The nines held and the final table was set.

Here are the final table participants and their starting chip positions:

  • 1 – Mark Darner – 1.34 million
  • 2 – John Gale – 1.21 million
  • 3 – Andrew “Bruce” Le – 875,000
  • 4 – Tim Finne – 345,000
  • 5 – Matthew Vessier – 1.09 million
  • 6 – Sean Rice – 580,000
  • 7 – Nitesh Rawtani – 1.79 million
  • 8 – Gary Luther – 1.16 million
  • 9 – Stuart Rutter – 575,000

John Gale was the only bracelet winner at this final table and his experience would come into play. Shortly after Sean Rice fell in 8th place, Gale doubled-up through Stuart Rutter to move into the chip leader.

With five players remaining, Gale took over and eliminated every player remaining leading up to heads-up play against Gary Luther. By the time heads-up play was reached, Gale held a massive 8.5:1 chip lead over Luther.

Luther held on for a few hands but couldn’t gain significant ground against Gale. Finally, he was all-in pre-flop with Ac-3c against the pocket deuces of Gale. The board failed to produce either an ace or three and the 61-year-old Gale is a two-time WSOP champion.

This victory is even more remarkable considering the fact that Gale has skipped the last three WSOP’s due to a brain tumor. His performance in this event should put him as a frontrunner for any “Comeback Player of the Year” awards given this year.

Gale has made the most of his final table appearances at the World Series of Poker. This was only his third WSOP final table and second career bracelet victory. In addition to the bracelet, he earned $298,290. Congratulations.

Sexton, Lindgren and Busquet in Contention in Millionaire Maker

Day 3 of the Millionaire Maker started with 142 players looking to work their way to the final table. With $1.2 million on the line for first place, players didn’t take any chances and the pace of play tended to be a bit slower than you would expect. As such, we fell just short of the final table by the end of the day.

While events such as this draw the amateur crowd, the field on Day 3 was remarkably pro heavy. Among the notables that fell short of the final table included Raymond Davis (137th), Justin Bonomo (110th), Shannon Shorr (105th), Rex Clinkscales (86th), Dimitar Danchev (47th), Hoyt Corkins (41st), Blair Hinkle (34th), Jonathan Tamayo (28th) and Steve Gross (19th).

Just 17 players remain in the Millionaire Maker with Randy Pfeifer taking 6.56 million and the chip lead into the final day. Right behind him is pro Erick Lindgren with 5.95 million. Oliver Busquet is fourth in chips with 5.15 million.

Poker Hall of Famer and bracelet winner Mike Sexton is sixth in chips heading into the final day. It has been 26 years since Sexton won his bracelet and this would be an amazing accomplishment for the 67-year-old.

Also returning on Day 3 are Justin Pechie and Andrew Lichtenberger. Lichtenberger is looking for his first career bracelet while Pechie is looking for his second. Both will return as short stacks.

Action will resume at 11 a.m. PDT this morning and continue until a bracelet winner has been crowned.

Keven Stammen Takes Chip Lead into Final Day of $3,000 Limit Hold’em Six-Max

Day 2 of the $3,000 Limit Hold’em Six-Max resumed on Monday with 160 players looking to make the money in this event and start the march towards the final table. Joseph Thomas started the day as chip leader with Daniel Negreanu, David Benyamine and Jorryt van Hoof healthy in chips.

It would take the majority of the day to reach the money in this event and Anh Van Nguyen became the unfortunate bubble boy. On a flop of Jd-9d-4d, Nguyen was all-in with Qd-Qs against the Ad-8h of Jorryt van Hoof. The turn fell the As to give van Hoof the lead and the river 6s sent this event into the money.

Just 36 players will be paid in this event. A min-cash is worth $5,129 while first will receive $230,799. A few notables that hit the rail in the money included Hal Lubarsky (36th), Aleksandr Denisov (30th), Mark Newhouse (26th) and Daniel Negreanu (25th).

At the end of ten levels, action was halted with 22 players remaining. Keven Stammen finished the day with 459,000 and the chip lead. Some of the notables returning later today include Randal Flowers, Matt Hawrilenko, Ronnie Bardah, David Chiu and Brian Hastings.

Play resumes at 2 p.m. PDT and will continue through the final table and until the bracelet has been awarded.

Vornicu Leads $1,500 NL While Schneider Leads $10k Omaha Hi-Lo Championship

The first standard $1,500 NL Hold’em Event of the 2015 WSOP commenced on Monday at Noon and drew a solid field of 1,844. Over the course of the day, the field was reduced to just 272 players.

At the end of play, Valentin Vornicu finished as chip leader with 212,000. Notable players advancing to Day 2 included Andy Frankenberger, Eric Baldwin, Marvin Rettenmaier, Greg Mueller, Martin Jacobson, Lizzy Harrison, Will Failla and Shannon Shorr.

The 4 p.m. event was the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship. An elite field of 157 players took to the felt looking to become the “World Champion” of Omaha Hi-Lo. Among the notables that played on Day 1 were Frankie O’Dell, Shaun Deeb, Mike Matusow, Brock Parker, Eli Elezra, Ted Forrest, Allen Bari, Robert Mizrachi, Huck Seed and Todd Brunson.

After ten levels, around 100 players remain with Tom Schneider finishing as chip leader with 162,800. Others bagging solid stacks at the end of Day 1 were Shaun Deeb, Ken Aldridge and Anthony Zinno.

$1,000 NL and $1,500 NL Single Draw Lowball on Tap on Tuesday

Two new events begin play on Tuesday. The Noon event is the first standard $1,000 NL Hold’em Event of the 2015 WSOP. This should be another large field, possibly exceeding 2,000 players with a solid mix of pro and amateur players.

The evening event is $1,500 NL 2-7 Single Draw Lowball. Another pro heavy field is expected to descend on the Rio for this one. Steven Wolansky took down this event in 2014 and this event has the potential for an attendance spike.

Click the Banner Below to Take Your Chance at Life Changing Money During the 2015 WSOP:


Think you can beat the pros at their own game? If you’re in Nevada, you can play satellite your way into WSOP events daily on Satellites are available for most events, including the $10,000 Main Event later this series.

James Guill

James Guill began his poker career in 2006, spending two years traveling the US tournament circuit. Since 2008, he has covered the game extensively for some of the biggest names in the industry. When not writing about the latest poker news, he can be found hunting for antique treasures in Central Virginia.