Phil Galfond Wins WSOP $10k PLO 8/OB Event for Third Career Bracelet

Phil Galfond Wins WSOP $10k PLO 8/OB Event for Third Career Bracelet

Phil Galfond has captured a third career WSOP bracelet after besting a field of 237 players at Event #60: $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo Championship for $567,788. Despite being a prolific high-stakes online cash player, the 33 year-old pro generally only plays tournaments at the annual World Series of Poker, as is reflected in 20 out of his 28 cashes since 2006 being recorded at the Series in Las Vegas.

Nevertheless, Galfond has now managed to pick up three gold bracelets over the years, including taking down the 2008 WSOP $5,000 Pot-Limit Omaha w/ Rebuys for $817,781, the 2015 WSOP $10,000 No-Limit 2-7 Single Draw Championship for $224,383, and now this year’s $10,000 WSOP Pot Limit Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship. Commenting upon his trio of bracelets, Galfond stated:

“There’s nothing like the first one, so that stands ahead. It still feels really good, on par with the second.” As for his third accolade, Galfond explained, “I just ran really hot at the right time. I ran bad all summer, so I was saving it up for now. Now, it’s even.”

$10k PLO 8/ob Championship

The 237 players who registered for the $10k PLO 8/ob Championship event helped create a prize pool worth $2,227,800. The first day of play then saw 125 competitors survive, which was then reduced to 24 players by the finish of Day 2, with the tournament reaching its conclusion on a third and final day of action.

Amongst the recognizable pros booking one of its 36 money places was Nick Schulman in 35th ($15,000), Eli Elezra in 22nd ($18,631), Chris Ferguson in 13th ($25,695), and Brandon Shack-Harris in 12th ($31,334).

At the final table, Galfond then eliminated Chase Steely in 8th, followed by David “ODB” Baker in 7th, and Chad Power in 4th, while Michael Mckenna took care of Marco Johnson (6th), and Ali Abduljabbar (3rd) to force heads-up play for the coveted bracelet.

Phil Galfond vs Michael Mckenna

Michael McKenna entered the competition’s final day of play as the chip leader, and by the time he reached the heads-up phase he held a 2-1 chip lead over his remaining opponent. Galfond, however, played a small-ball strategy to help him turn his fortunes around, as he later explained:

“Heads up, I didn’t raise any hands until the last one. I just wanted to see a lot of flops. Since I wanted to see flops with my bad hands, I have to limp my good hands because he’d just attack me in that situation.”

After seeing his stack reduced, Mckenna then got his last 800,000 in chips all-in preflop holding Kc-Jc-10c-5s, before receiving a call from Galfond with Ad-8d-7h-4d. The dealer then laid out a 9d-3c-3h-7s-5s board to make a pair of sevens for Galfond, while the 5 kept him ahead with a two-way hand against McKenna, who missed the board.

Mckenna still collected an impressive $350,922 for his runner-up finish, though, representing his biggest score to date and increasing his career earnings to $419,789. Galfond, in the meantime, now boasts $2,907,407 in live winnings, to go with the more than $8 million he has won online playing cash games. Commenting upon his latest WSOP victory in Sin City, Galfond explained:

“I’ve basically never played PLO8 online. There is a mix game I’ve been playing live for two and a half years, 12 games, and one of them is PLO8. So, I’ve played a little bit. Honestly, I don’t think it helped me very much. So, I was figuring out as I went. I think I definitely ended the tournament a better tournament PLO8 player than I started.”

Galfond is one of poker’s most respected pros, and over the years has played an important role in engaging with the community and suggesting ways in which the industry may be improved. He also runs the training website Run It Once, and is expected to soon launch an online poker room addition to the site called Run It Once Poker. According to Galfond, he would like to find a way to play a lot more poker, but much of his time is currently being spent preparing the site for launch.

Final Table Result

1: Phil Galfond $567,788
2: Michael Mckenna $350,922
3: Ali Abduljabbar $240,497
4: Chad Power $168,275
5: Kwang Lee $120,263
6: Marco Johnson $87,830
7: David Baker $65,579
8: Chase Steely $50,086