After several lower buy-in no-limit holdem tournaments and other events that kicked off the 2010 World Series of Poker, it was on June 8 that the schedule offered up a $5,000 buy-in NLHE event. Though it wasn’t an astronomical price, it was enough to weed out some of the more inexperienced players and build a field with some skill and quite a few famous faces.
Event 17 of the WSOP attracted 792 players, which was quite a jump from the 655-player field of 2009, and the 2010 prize pool was set at $3,722,400. It was enough to pay out the final 72 players while reserving a whopping $818,959 for the top finisher.
Day 1 began with those 792 players but whittled the field to only 225 by the end of the day. Day 2 brought them back to play down into the money, ant it was the elimination of John Dolan on the money bubble that pushed the last 72 into cash. That night ended with 18 players still in the running and Jason DeWitt as the chip leader with 1,873,000 chips, followed by Jeff Williams with 1,323,000.
Day 3 was to be the final day of the event, and the survivors gathered at 2:30pm in the Amazon Ballroom on Thursday, June 10, all in hopes of being the last person standing. As play got underway, the following players cashed as the final table neared:
18th place: Joshua Macciello ($31,305)
17th place: Veronica Dunn ($31,305)
16th place: Dragan Galic ($31,305)
15th place: Joshua Cooper ($39,159)
14th place: Anthony Gargano ($39,159)
13th place: Nico Behling ($39,159)
12th place: Antonio Esfandiari ($49,024)
11th place: Jesse Chinni ($49,024)
With the last ten players seated at one table, action continued in search of one more elimination before the table was official. That happened when Perry Friedman pushed all-in preflop for his last 533K. Original raiser Amit Makhija took quite a bit of time to assess the situation but finally called with , and Friedman showed . The race was on until the board came , and the jacks held up to eliminate Friedman in tenth place with $49,024.
The final table was then set, with players and chip counts as follows:
|Peter Gilmore ||2,305,000 |
|James Carroll ||1,893,000 |
|Jeff Williams ||1,670,000 |
|Jason DeWitt ||1,440,000 |
|David Benefield ||1,433,000 |
|Amit Makhija ||1,117,000 |
|Paul Foltyn ||975,000 |
|Sam Trickett ||956,000 |
|Manny Minaya ||272,000 |
It didn’t take long for the short-stacked Minaya to be reduced to a stack of less than 200K, and his last chips went all-in preflop with . Williams called with . The dealer gave them , and no help came for Manny Minaya, who left the party early with $62,350 for the ninth place finish.
Gilmore took some hits from the start, with Williams taking a pot and DeWitt doubling through him. DeWitt then climbed into the chip lead, though that was short-lived because Benefield soon doubled through DeWitt.
Foltyn was the next to move, and he did it with about 650K holding . But DeWitt reraised all-in to isolate, and Gilmore got out of the way, at which point DeWitt showed the . The board did nothing to help the short stack when it produced . Paul Foltyn was eliminated in eighth place with $79,957.
Seven-handed play saw Williams at the top of the leaderboard and Benefield in second. Though DeWitt was in third at one point, Gilmore doubled through him to send him into the lower half of the chip counts.
It was Carroll who was in trouble, and he happily pushed all-in when he woke up with . But Williams was able to call without hesitation holding the . The changed nothing and helped no one, though it allowed Williams to scoop those chips. James Carroll departed the stage with $103,594 for seventh place.
The six players battled it out for several levels, as Williams suffered some hits, especially when Trickett took a big pot from him and Benefield doubled through him. But Benefield had his own troubles when Makhija doubled through him.
Benefield was the next to try for a double-up, and with only 565K left, he moved all-in. Trickett called from the button, and Gilmore called from the big blind. The two players checked the flop, the turn, and the river. Trickett turned over , which beat the of Gilmore. David “Raptor” Benefield showed before leaving the tournament in sixth place, for which he won $135,718.
A while later, Makhija risked his 1,030,000 chips with on the button, but Trickett woke up with in the big blind and called. The flop of was no help to the all-in player, and the on the turn only gave Trickett the pair of aces. A fell on the river to end the hand, and Amit “Amak316” Makhija was gone in fifth place with $179,866.
Trickett was the monster chip leader at that point in the tournament with over 6 million chips. DeWitt was gaining some ground but couldn’t get close to the chip leader during five-handed play.
Gilmore was on the shortest stack with only 1.18 million and pushed all-in with . Trickett called with , but he found straight outs on the flop. The on the turn didn’t change much, but the on the river gave Trickett the straight. Peter Gilmore took the bad beat to the cashier cage, where he exchanged it for $241,472 for the fourth place finish.
Williams was the next to move, having been relegated to a stack of less than 1 million chips. Williams pushed with , but DeWitt called with . The dealer gave them nothing of significance on the board, and Jeff “yellowsub” Williams was gone in third place with $328,762.
Heads-up play then began with the following chip counts:
|Jason DeWitt ||6,890,000 |
|Samuel Trickett ||4,990,000 |
Action started at 4am and went on for about 45 minutes. Trickett initially made some headway toward evening the chip stacks, but DeWitt continued to apply pressure and take pots frequently to stay ahead.
Trickett was finally chipped down quite significantly and sat at more than a 4-to-1 deficit. It was soon after that DeWitt put him to the test with an all-in move, and Trickett called all-in for his tournament life with . DeWitt showed only but caught a pair on the flop. Trickett had the straight draw, though, but neither the on the turn nor the on the river made that straight. Sam Trickett was eliminated in second place with $505,725.
Jason DeWitt won Event 17, which came with an impressive $818,959 in prize money and the WSOP gold bracelet for the $5K NLHE win.