Joe Cada WSOP 2009 Winner – Poker Champion

Joe Cada has been named the 2009 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event champion and has also become the youngest player to do so in the history of the WSOP, beating out last year’s champion Peter Eastgate. The 21 year old college dropout had over 150 friends and family, sporting U of M colours, cheering for him while he competed against a field of 6,494 participants. His efforts would allow him to take home the $8.5 million dollar grand prize.
Born and raised in Shelby Township Michigan, Cada began playing poker at a fairly young age and would eventually quit college after only a few short semesters to pursue his game at a professional level. Because of his age, he wasn’t able to play in any of the US casinos and would travel to Canada, Costa Rica and other countries to play in land based events. Cada also logged a number of hours playing online poker and was successful in both prior to his WSOP win, earning him enough to buy a house.
Like most parents, Cada’s family wasn’t overly thrilled when he made the choice to drop out of college to pursue a professional poker career. After Cada was declared the 2009 WSOP Main Event champion his family was asked if they supported their son’s decision to drop out of school. His father responded with;
“To be honest with you, not really. I mean can you ever encourage your son to gamble? It’s not something I was hoping he’d make a career out of. I didn’t want to encourage it. And I would try to discourage it. I didn’t think he would ever get to the level that he’s at. I thought maybe he would suffer some disappointments, and I didn’t want to see that. I guess I was wrong.”
His mother, a professional blackjack dealer at the Motor City Casino in Detroit, shared the same feelings as Joe Cada’s father. When asked to sum up her feelings on his current win she said; “Very elated. I’m dumbfounded. It’s just a dream”.
Unlike other Main Event winners who earned their seats through online satellites, Joe Cada received backing by two online poker pros, Cliff “Johnny Bax” Josephy and Eric “Sheets” Haber. Both players saw potential in Cada’s ability and Cada himself admitted to being on a major downswing and just couldn’t justify fronting the cost of playing in the World Series himself. Joe will be sharing half of his $8.5 million win with the two backers as part of his deal for receiving entry into the Main Event in addition to the other WSOP events.
“I was on a big downswing. I was like on a $150,000 downswing before the WSOP. There are a lot of people out there with backers. And I didn’t feel like dropping $60-70,000 at the World Series.”
Cada Signs Deal with Pokerstars
During the 4 month hiatus for the WSOP final table to commence, Cada signed a deal with Pokerstars and became the newest member of Team Pokerstars. He turned away offers from both PokerHost and Ultimate Bet who gave him 24 hours to make his decision. Cada’s manager said the young player was waiting for his deal from Pokerstars, as “He loves that brand more than the others. That’s where he plays most of his online poker.”
Joe Cada Final Table 2009 WSOP
Joe Cada earned his final table spot on July 15th and later resumed play on November 7th entering the final table with 13,215,000 in chips, almost 5% of the total number of chips in play. After more than 17 hours of final table play, Cada defeated Antoine Saout to play heads-up with Darvin Moon, a player from Oakland Maryland.
Cada had a significant lead on Moon with close to 136 million chips to Moon’s 59 million when the two players began heads up however chip counts changed quickly when Moon took a monster pot from Cada and had a 3 to 1 chip lead. He didn’t hold the lead from long as Cada gained back his chips a few hands later and would enter the final hand against Moon with a 135 million chips to Moon’s 58 million.
During the final hand Cada was on the button and raised to 3 million pre-flop. Moon re-raised Cada to eight million and Cada would react by pushing Moon all-in. It took Moon a few moments to consider Cada’s move however he eventually made the call. When the cards were turned over, Cada held a 9c and 9d to Moon’s Qd-Jd. The board ran 8c-2c-7s-Kh-7c and would give Joe Cada the title and the $8.5 prize with a pair of nines defeating Darvin Moon.
WSOP 2009 Final Table Places and Payouts
1. Joe Cada, $8,547,042
2. Darvin Moon, $5,182,928
3. Antoine Saout, $3,479,670
4. Eric Buchman, $2,502,890
5. Jeff Shulman, $1,953,452
6. Steven Begleiter, $1,587,160
7. Phil Ivey, $1,404,014
8. Kevin Schaffel, $1,300,231
9. James Akenhead, $1,263,602

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