American Jeffrey Smith from Encinitas, Calif., has captured his first World Series of Poker bracelet in Event #9: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em and the top prize of $323,125. Smith defeated runner-up Danny Nguyen after a long three-hour heads-up match that saw a chip lead change almost every couple of hands.
Smith scored his first WSOP cash in last year's Millionaire Maker event, earning $2,704 for a 605th-place finish. According to Smith's Hendon Mob page, his previous best cash was a 3rd-place finish for $25,800 in a 2008 LA Poker Classic side event. Smith's total career earnings before today were just under $46,000 so he has multiplied that by almost six times.
In the final hand, Smith raised to 160,000 and Nguyen pushed all in. Smith made a fast call and flipped over to Nguyen's . The board came down and Smith's trip nines won the pot. Nguyen made $199,829 for his runner-up finish.
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Hand 292: Danny Nguyen pushed all in and Jeff Smith quickly called.
The board ran out and Nguyen made the double up to 1,460,000 chips.
Hand 293: Smith raised to 160,000 and Nguyen pushed all in. Smith made a fast call and flipped over to Nguyen's . The board came down and Smith's trip nines won the pot, the tournament, the bracelet and the top prize money. Nguyen made $199,829 for his runner-up finish.
On Episode 81 of the Thinking Poker Podcast, Nate and Andrew discuss strategies for the World Series of Poker that will assist you both on and off of the felt. They also break down a hand from Nitcast favorite Gareth Chantler and another from the Sunday Million.
Hand 138: Jeff Smith opened to 80,000 on the button, Danny Nguyen called in the small blind and Frank Patti moved all in from the big blind. Smith got out of the way while Nguyen made the call to put Patti at risk.
Patti was heading toward the flop, looking for a big time double up. The dealer laid out a flop and Nguyen took the lead with his pair of kings. Patti would once again need a three-outer to save his tournament life. The turn gave Patti nine more outs with a flush draw. The river gave Nguyen the check mark and Patti was eliminated.
Hand 57: Haugo moved all in under the gun, and action folded to Nguyen, who called immediately upon seeing his cards.
The flop gave both players flush draws, though Haugo's was obviously better. A turn meant Haugo needed to improve on the river to survive, unless a hit, which would mean a chopped pot. The paired the board, leaving Haugo felted.
"Good hand," he said, shaking Nguyen's hand. "Good luck."
Vanessa Selbst, winner of Event #2: $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold'em and her third World Series of Poker gold bracelet, joins the show to talk about her heads-up matches, the Twitter beef with Jason Mo, and her two small dogs. Rich, Donnie, and Jason then take a look at all of the recent bracelet winners and dissect the idea of a $20 million guarantee tournament.
Hand 22: Chris Hunichen opened to 50,000, Danny Nguyen called from the big blind, and the two saw a flop. Danny slid out a bet and Chris snap-shoved all in. Nguyen quickly called putting Hunichen at risk.
Hunichen was behind but had outs to a flush and his ace was live. The turn and river gave no aid, however, and Hunichen was knocked out in sixth place.
This is the second straight year with a sixth-place finish for Hunichen, as he took sixth in last year's WSOP Millionaire Maker event for $229,575.