Phil Hellmuth’s stunning start to this year’s World Series of Poker (WSOP) finally provided him with the prize he’s been after when he won a record 16th bracelet on Monday.
Hellmuth has been the talk of the WSOP over the first few weeks, in part due to the epic tirade he launched during last week’s final table of the $10,000 Seven-Card Stud Championship but also for reaching four final tables in the first six events he has played.
He ultimately finished 4th in the Stud Championship, 5th in the $10,000 Omaha Hi-Lo Championship and 6th in the $25,000 H.O.R.S.E. but made it count this time around as he beat a field of 272 starters to win the $1,500 No-Limit 2-7 Lowball Draw.
It was also the first bracelet Hellmuth has won since 2018, his third in mixed games and his first playing deuce-to-seven, having previously claimed two razz bracelets to go with his 13 Hold’em titles.
“It’s harder to win in the mixed games,” Hellmuth told PokerGo after his win. “If I can win four or five mixed bracelets, then I think it’s going to say a lot about my legacy. I think I’m playing a bunch of games at a world-class level now. In Omaha eight-or-better, I think I’m going to win bracelets. In seven-card stud, I’m 99% and I think I could still get a little bit better. Razz, obviously, I have the best record in razz in history.”
Hellmuth said this win was particularly special, having fallen agonisingly short of deuce-to-seven bracelets when finishing runner-up to Billy Baxter in 1993 and John Juanda in 2011.
“I’ve wanted a deuce-to-seven bracelet ever since the 1980s because it was the coolest bracelet to win,” he said. “It was the one tournament that Chip [Reese] and Doyle [Brunson] showed up for. All of the big-name poker players, such as Billy Baxter – all the champions showed up for that one tournament. I wanted this bracelet so badly.”
“I’ve been fighting so fucking hard for this bracelet for so long in the deuce-to-seven. My game has gotten better and better and better. I’ve worked really hard at it, and I know all of these tricks because I’ve been playing it since the 1980s.”