Justin Bonomo Tops All Time Money List After $10M Big One for One Drop Victory

Justin Bonomo Tops All Time Money List After $10M Big One for One Drop Success

Last night, the $1 Million Big One for One Drop wrapped up to conclude one of the most exciting World Series of Poker festivals ever seen. In appropriate fashion for a series that has produced many a dramatic story, Justin Bonomo eventually managed to overcome his final opponent, Fedor Holz, to claim a second bracelet this year, as well as a ginormous first place prize of $10 million.

In so doing, he instantly sailed past Daniel Negreanu to top the ‘All Time Money List’ with $42,979,591 in earnings, with the Canadian superstar, who had occupied the pole position since 2014, now $3,323,396 adrift of the 32 year-old pro. Commenting upon his remarkable victory, Bonomo said:

“This year has been absolutely incredible. It’s more money than I’ve ever played for in my life. I buckled down during all my breaks. I studied. Took the day off the day before and studied all day. I took this as seriously as I possibly could and tried to stay as focused as possible. It paid off.”

Incredible Heater

Justin Bonomo is enjoying the biggest heater ever witnessed in tournament poker, with his winnings half way through the year already smashing the $22,389,481 won by Dan Colman in 2014, and the $16,093,402 won by Fedor Holz in 2016. Amongst the massive scores recorded by Bonomo this year is victory at the Super High Roller Bowl China for $4,823,077, a winning performance at the $300,000 Super High Roller Bowl Las Vegas for $5 million, and now a triumph worth $10 million at The Big One for One Drop.

History of Big One for One Drop

The Big One for One Drop tournament was created by Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté, who started the massive buy-in tournament because of his love for the game, and in order to support his nonprofit One Drop Foundation which focuses on water initiatives in impoverished regions around the world.

In 2012, Antonio Esfandiari ($18,346,673) bested a field of 48 players to become its first winner, followed in 2014 by Daniel Colman, who topped a 42 player field to collect a $15,306,668 first place prize. In 2016, the tournament was subsequently limited to non-professional players, with China’s Elton Tsang eventually triumphing over the field of 28 to claim its $12,248,912 prize.

Justin Bonomo therefore becomes its fourth champion, and while this year’s Big One for One Drop was the smallest yet held, Bonomo’s prize was still the biggest handed out at the 2018 WSOP.

2018 Big One for One Drop

Event #78: The Big One for One Drop attracted 27 players, meaning just 5 players would see a return on their money. Needless to say, only the very best players took part in the world’s most expensive tournament, and falling by the wayside short of a money spot were such pros as Adrian Mateos (22nd), Daniel Negreanu (16th), Erik Seidel (9th), and Phil Ivey (8th). Finally, David Einhorn busted in 6th place to just miss out on a $2 million prize, which the extremely wealthy hedge fund manager would subsequently have donated to charity.

Einhorn was eliminated after raising preflop holding A-Q and receiving a call from Bonomo (7-4) on the big blind. Bonomo then check-raised Einhorn all-in on the 7-5-5 flop, and after making the call, a 2 and 4 completed the board, sending Einhorn out of the competition empty-handed. Commenting upon Einhorn’s exit, Bonomo said:

“To be totally honest, I almost feel guilty for knocking David Einhorn. I will give a lot to charity but I’m not as well off as him to give it all to charity. It’s an honor to be part of the money that’s donated to One Drop.”

Final Table

Bonomo entered the final table on a mountain of chips, giving him a significant advantage over his fellow competitors Fedor Holz, Dan Smith, Rick Salomon and Byron Kaverman.

Fedor Holz later dragged down a massive 35.8 million pot after being dealt 10-10 and being involved in a three-way all-in pot against Rick Salomon (A-K) and Byron Kaverman (A-5). The A-K-2 flop left the German number one badly trailing his opponents, a situation not altered by a Q arriving on the turn. A 10 on the river, however, propelled Holz to a commanding lead, while Kaverman (5th) and Salomon (4th) were sent to the rail.

The next major piece of action saw Bonomo shove preflop holding K-10, and receive a call from Dan Smith holding Q-10. The A-9-6-J-Q that ensued completed a straight for Bonomo, leaving Smith heading for the exit, albeit with a $4 million paycheck.

Justin Bonomo vs Fedor Holz

At one stage after heads-up got underway, Holz held almost 100m of the 135m chips in play, but Bonomo managed to fight back and by the time the deciding hand was played had reduced Holz to a 24,800,000 stack. In the final hand, Holz moved all-in for his remaining chips holding A-4, only to receive a call from Bonomo with a dominating A-J. There were to be no further surprises following a K-8-3-2-Q board, and so Holz finished the runner-up, while top honors went to Bonomo.

Fedor Holz was Germany’s all-time money earner even before earning his $6 million runner-up prize, and as Bonomo commented after defeating his final opponent:

“Almost everyone out there respects the game of both myself and Fedor. I certainly respect his game a great deal. It definitely felt like a storybook ending playing against Fedor with him starting with the chip lead and having to grind my way back.”

Final Table Results

1st: Justin Bonomo $10,000,000
2nd: Fedor Holz $6,000,000
3rd: Dan Smith $4,000,000
4th: Rick Salomon $2,840,000
5th: Byron Kaverman $2,000,000