First place might have paid $96,361 but the win in Event #8 ($2,500 No Limit Deuce to Seven) earned Phil Ivey a helluva lot more than that. Ivey knocked off the final two players, Yan Chen and John Monnette, to capture his sixth World Series of Poker bracelet and help him collect on a series of prop bets he had with a number of fellow pro players.
All the attention at the start of the day was focused on Ivey and his pursuit of another bracelet. The 33 year old began the day with the second smallest chip stack, ahead of only Rodeen Tolebi, but managed to claw his way into contention and then become more aggressive once the bracelet was within reach. (Yet he wasn’t able to overcome one final opponent as Monnette stood his ground.)
The first elimination came only 15 minutes into play. Chen, in the small blind, raised to 9,000 and Elia Ahmadian re-raised to 28,000. Chen called and drew one card while Ahmadian stood pat. Chen moved all-in and Ahmadian called instantly. Chen revealed 9-8-4-3-2 which was good enough to beat Ahmadian’s 10-low.
The fast start continued when Raphael Zimmerman ran into Ivey twice inside of five minutes and found himself drawing dead both times. After doubling up through Zimmerman on the previous hand Ivey opened for 12,000 and Zimmerman re-raised. Ivey responded with an all-in and Zimmerman called. Ivey announced he would stand pat and Zimmerman decided to draw one. Ivey revealed 8-7-5-4-3 and Zimmerman put his cards into the muck.
Less than ten minutes later Chen got involved again and sent his second victim to the rail. Short-stacked Talebi moved all-in for 50,500 and Chen made the call. Neither player drew a card and Talebi showed J-T while Chen revealed a 9-8-low.
The next elimination came at the hands of Monnette. Ivey opened for 15,000, Kesselman raised all-in for 80,500 total and Monnette called from the big blind. Ivey relinquished his hand and the two players were heads-up. Both players stood pat and Monnette revealed the stone cold nuts with 7-5-4-3-2 and Kesselman’s quest for a second bracelet was cut short.
While the first four eliminations went quickly the action slowed as Ivey, Monnette and Chen battled it out. It took over three hours and fifteen minutes for the action to get heads-up with each player holding the chip lead at some point. As Ivey’s chip stack fluctuated so did the number of railbirds sweating the five-time bracelet winner. Those who have prop bets with him on whether or not he could in a bracelet this year were very interested.
Ivey got one step closer when we sent Chen home in third. Chen had the button and moved all-in for 139,000 and Ivey made the call. Chen stood pat and showed a jack-low while Ivey drew one card to complete a 9-5-4-3-2. Chen’s night was over and Ivey and Monnette prepared for heads-up play.
When heads-up action began Ivey had 481,000 and Mannette had 615,000. The two players played heads-up for three hours and 12 minutes and throughout the battle the result seemed to never be in doubt. Monnette did carry the chip lead when play began but not long after they began to sqaure off for the bracelet Ivey took the chip lead and didn’t let up. Two consecutive double-ups though put Monnette ahead and the atmosphere at the final table changed dramatically.
Ivey however wasn’t dismayed and battled all the way to even things up and take a small lead before the final hand of the tournament. Monnette opened with a raise and Ivey responded by moving all-in. After the call Monnette announced he would be drawing one to his 9-7-5-2. Ivey also announced he would be drawing one to his 7-6-4-2. Monnette drew a 7 giving him a pair and Ivey revealed a 5 for a bracelet-winning 7-6 low.
2009 WSOP Event #8 ($2,500 No Limit Deuce to Seven) Final Table Payouts
- Phil Ivey – $96,361
- John Monnette – $59,587
- Yan Chen – $38,892
- Eric Kesselman – $26,757
- Rodeen Talebi – $19,346
- Raphael Zimmerman – $14,663
- Elia Ahmadian – $11,627
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