Loose-Aggressive Phil Hellmuth Wins 13th WSOP BraceletOctober 5, 2012 12:56 pm
Last night, Phil Hellmuth made poker history in Cannes after capturing a 13th WSOP bracelet, whilst pulling further away from his nearest rivals Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan both stuck on 10 bracelets since 2005.
However, this particularly bracelet will hold particularly sweet memories for the 1989 WSOP World Champion as he now becomes the first player ever to win the WSOP and WSOP Europe main events. In addition, Hellmuth has extended his record of most cashes at the WSOP to 95 and also moves up to number three on poker’s ‘All Time Money List’ with $17,493,271 in tournament earnings.
Without a doubt, the 48 year-old pro put in one of the best performances of his career to claim his second bracelet of 2012, and collect the €1,022,376 ($1,331,031) first place prize. Commenting later on his remarkable achievement, Hellmuth said:
“This was the best poker I’ve ever played in my life, I know that for certain. I played as good as I can possibly play, caught a few breaks and here I am. I’m very thankful..I know people don’t expect me to use this word, but I’m humbled. I’m trying to figure out if this is real or not.”
The €10,450 No-Limit Hold’em Main Event was crammed with top poker talent but as others began to fall by the wayside, Hellmuth took the chip lead with about 40 players left and continued dominating the action all the way to the final table.
Notable players cashing along the way included Daniel Negreanu in 43rd (€20,150), Eugene Katchalov in 40th (€21,250), Bertrand Grospellier in 25th (€22,982), Liv Boeree in 18th (€26,611), David Benyamine in 15th (€32,256), Scott Seiver in 10th (€66,528), Jason Mercier in 8th (€84,672), and Joseph Cheong in 4th (€292,320).
On his way to victory, Hellmuth employed an extremely loose, aggressive style in contrast to his slightly more conservative approach, which seemed to cause all sorts of problems for the other players. From his position in the commentary box, Antonio Esfandiari confessed to being “shocked, impressed and completely confused by Phil Hellmuth,” while Daniel Negreanu had earlier noted that Hellmuth was “playing a different brand of poker that’s totally confusing his opponents who aren’t adjusting well to it at all..He’s using “old school” tactics and bet sizing and people are spazzing out against him! His plan is working really well.”
After reaching heads-up play with a 3 to 1 chip lead, Hellmuth continued to pound raise his remaining opponent Sergii Baranov and just sixteen minutes later forced an all-in from Baranov (A-4), who was in bad shape against Hellmuth’s A-10.
“I’m going to win this right here,” exclaimed the resolute US pro and after the board rolled out J-9-5-A-3, the six-and-a-half foot tall Hellmuth jumped into the air in ecstatic celebration, and received a standing ovation from the gathered crowd.
Congratulations to Hellmuth on a famous victory, and providing Greg Merson doesn’t win the WSOP Main Event, Hellmuth will have further honours bestowed upon him next month as he is named the 2012 WSOP Player of the Year.