- 1 This year’s WSOP Main Event was a big one
- 2 The 2017 WSOP Main Event final nine
- 3 WSOP Final Table story lines to watch
- 4 How to watch the WSOP Final Table
- 5 Other options to keep track of WSOP Final Table
- 6 The relevant numbers
- 7 A list of past WSOP Main Event winners
This year’s WSOP Main Event was a big one
This year’s WSOP Main Event is huge – 7,221 players entered the tournament to shoot for the bracelet. The field size is the third-largest in history, behind the 7,319 players from 2010’s event and the 8,773 players from 2006. The first WSOP Main Event to host over 1,000 players was just thirteen years ago, in 2004. Chris Moneymaker’s seminal 2003 achievement was a grand event, to be sure, but he only faced 838 other players.
The large field has, in turn, generated a large prize pool. By the time registration closed, players were competing for a total of $67,877,400. For comparison, the first WSOP Main Event had no prize pool at all and featured a whopping seven entrants playing a marathon cash game.
The prize for first place did not reach $1 million until 1991, and it stayed at that level until 2000. Now, for the second year in a row, all nine final table players are guaranteed at least a million-dollar payout, and the winner will take home $8,150,000.
Johnny Moss won the first two WSOP Main Events. The second event – the first to feature a prize pool – paid out $30,000 to the champion. This year, a player eliminated in 414th place would receive a larger payout than Moss received.
The 2017 WSOP Main Event final nine
|Scott Blumstein||2||97,250,000||United States|
|John Hesp||1||85,700,000||United Kingdom|
|Bryan Piccioli||8||33,800,000||United States|
|Dan Ott||9||26,475,000||United States|
|Jack Sinclair||5||20,200,000||United Kingdom|
|Ben Lamb||7||18,050,000||United States|
*Blinds will be at 400000/800000 with a 100000 ante when play resumes.
WSOP Final Table story lines to watch
The John Hesp show
The second-biggest stack at the final table belongs to a 64-year-old British recreational player with a penchant for fancifully-colored suits. A win would make him one of the oldest players to ever win the World Series of Poker Main Event and the oldest since the poker boom in 2003. He would also be the first British champion since Mansour Matloubi in 1990.
A trio of foreign firsts
Three players have a chance to become the first of their countrymen to win the WSOP Main Event. Either Benjamin Pollak and Antoine Saout could be the first French champion. Damian Salas could not only be the first Argentine champion – he could be the first champion from South America, and only the second from the Southern Hemisphere (along with Joe Hachem).
Two players have booked return engagements
We’ve got two, yes you read that right, two former WSOP November Niners that are looking to go add to their WSOP legacy this year. Both Ben Lamb and Antoine Saout have tasted the final table before, and it’s possible that the experience gives them a leg up this year. However, both are two of the shorter stacks, so they’ll have their work cut out for them if they want to reach poker’s tournament pinnacle.
How to watch the WSOP Final Table
The November Nine is no longer, and we don’t need to wait months in order to crown a WSOP winner. In fact, the final table will commence on July 20, and run for three consecutive nights. Each night will conclude according to the number of players remaining, as follows:
- July 20 – Play down to 6 players.
- July 21 – Play down to 3 players.
- July 22 – Determine the winner.
PokerGO has been the exclusive provider of live streaming for most of the Main Event this year. The exception has been during prime time hours when the coverage has shifted to simulcasting via live stream and television on ESPN or ESPN2 (depending on the night).
For the WSOP final table, all TV and streaming coverage will shift to the ESPN family. ESPN2 will begin coverage of the final table at 9 p.m. ET on July 20. The final two nights will air on ESPN also starting at 9 p.m. ET. If you’re away from your TV, catch the live stream over at WatchESPN all three nights.
ESPN2 will also feature a final table preview show on July 19 at 10 p.m. ET.
If you need to catch up on the action before the final table begins, PokerGO has replays so you can see how the final nine made it to the featured table. Just remember, PokerGo is behind a paywall.
Other options to keep track of WSOP Final Table
If you can’t be near a television or a live stream, then WSOP.com is your best bet for WSOP live updates and chip counts powered by PokerNews. In fact, if you want up-to-the-minute coverage, then the this is your best bet, due to the television delay.
For viewers who want a more interactive experience, many Twitter accounts will be live-tweeting the final table. Notable accounts to watch are:
The WSOP final table participants with Twitter accounts (that we could confirm)
Other solid WSOP final table follows for analysis and insight
Doug Polk: Doug Polk is an affable and successful poker professional who won the Big One for One Drop this year and was visible during a couple of days of live coverage in the Main Event this year. As a bonus, Polk offers a piece of his profits for following him on various social media accounts.
Daniel Negreanu: Daniel Negreanu is the all-time money winner in live tournaments, and is known for his friendliness almost as much as for his skills at the table. He has hosted a video blog for the entire main event this year and will be commentating off-and-on for ESPN as the tournament winds down.
Kara Scott: Kara Scott is a poker commentator and player who is a familiar face at televised poker events. She is as connected to what’s happening as anyone and is a solid follow on social media even outside of the WSOP.
Phil Hellmuth: Phil Hellmuth is, by his own account, the greatest poker player in the world. He is very good, though, and he has a flair for the dramatic and a sense of the moment to boot. It’s almost obligatory to follow his feed during the Main Event.
The relevant numbers
Though the WSOP has flattened out the pay schedule considerably in recent years, the final table players can count on a significant chunk of the almost $68 million prize pool. Combined, the final table will earn a combined $26,250,000, or 38.67% of the overall WSOP Main Event prize pool.
The winner’s share alone is over 12% of the whole pot. The rest of the final table places drop precipitously, and (only) a million dollars separates the prize for ninth place and the prize for fifth place.
Here are the payouts for the final table, along with their percentages of the prize pool:
|Place||Payout||Percentage of Prizepool|
A list of past WSOP Main Event winners
This year’s World Series of Poker Main Event will crown a world champion for the 46th time. In that time, 40 men have ascended to the apex of the game. Only four have ever won more than once – Moss, Doyle Brunson, Stu Ungar, and Johnny Chan.
Given the expansion of the field, it is not likely to see another two-time champion, but there’s always a chance (just not this year). Dan Harrington, the 1995 world champion, has made the final table three other times, including back-to-back final tables in 2003 and 2004, which were the first two years that saw massively increased field sizes.
Regardless, on July 22, one player will join the ranks of these 40, and be forever immortalized. Here are the players he will join:
|Thomas “Amarillo Slim” Preston||1972|
|Walter “Puggy” Pearson||1973|
|Brian “Sailor” Roberts||1975|
|Jack “Treetop” Straus||1982|
|Chris “Jesus” Ferguson||2000|
Lead Image courtesy of Jamie Thomson/WSOP
Images inside story courtesy of Jessica Welman