John Juanda Wins a WSOP Bracelet; Hellmuth Misses his Chance

Phil Hellmuth was agonizingly close to getting his World Series of Poker Bracelet, but his shot at making history was foiled by a fellow poker pro, John Juanda. It must have been extremely frustrating, but alas, c’est la vie, such near misses are so common in the world of poker, and even Phil Hellmuth isn’t immune to them.hellmuth

The Final Table

Hellmuth started out with a less than average chip stack when the tournament entered final table play. Still, all eyes were on him, knowing that he would surely try his best to win, as this event could have given him his 12th bracelet, further solidifying his place in the record books. Sure enough, the poker brat played fiercely. He started out with a decent stack, but quickly managed to grow that stack into a very intimidating one as he began eliminating the competition. Nick Schulman, Joe Cassidy, David Baker, Steve Sung and Richard Ashby all fell at the hands of Hellmuth. He was practically at a rampage. All of his efforts put him in a 3:1 chip advantage when heads up with Juanda finally came. However, Juanda was no small fry himself. He actually started out with the shortest stack but that was grinded up his chip stack, managing to get a huge pot from Cassidy and played very patiently, surviving until only Hellmuth was left as his opponent. He also managed to eliminate Greg Raymer

Heads up between Juanda and Hellmuth

It must have been pretty intense at the final table, with Juanda facing off against Phil Hellmuth. Both had a pretty good reason to want the gold, and both were equally determined to win. They played for three whole hours before the final hand was reached. Along the way, Juanda played pretty aggressively – a strategy that worked seamlessly. He managed to win several pots, eventually getting the lead over Hellmuth. Hellmuth, on the other hand, was getting pretty frustrated but did manage to double up and even out the field at one point. However, at the final hand, Hellmuth moved all in and Juanda called. Hellmuth’s cards were Q-10-8-5-2 while Juanda had J-6-3-2, his final card was an 8, giving him a Jack-low. Juanda took home the grand prize of $367,170. Hellmuth, surprisingly a very good sport, said “Well played buddy, well played. You’re just so f-ing scary.” Amazingly, this is now Hellmuth’s fifth second-place finish in terms of non-Hold’em events. He just came short yet again, but this does prove that Hellmuth still has it in him. Juanda, on the other hand, now has 5 WSOP bracelets.

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