WSOP Weekly: Most Action Concludes in Las Vegas with New Jersey Grinders Coming Up Big

July 19, 2022
WSOP Weekly: Most Action Concludes in Las Vegas with New Jersey Grinders Coming Up Big

The Main Event took center stage over the week, but plenty of other tournaments have been part of the mix at the World Series of Poker. That included some nice scores from New Jersey grinders in live and online events.

Several players also chalked up their first wins and players from France also produced some major results. Texas player Lawrence Brandt (pictured above) also scored his second bracelet of the series.

The live and online WSOP schedule has mostly concluded with the Tournament of Champions only remaining to be decided. Here’s a look at the final week of action.

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Event 75: $777 Lucky 7s NLHE 7-Handed

Vive la France! Frenchman Gregory Teboul captured his first bracelet in this event with a slot-machine friendly payout of $777,777. This big-field event saw 6,891entries for a $4.7 million prize pool.

Georgia’s Rodney Turvin finished runner-up for $400,777. It’s been quite a trip to Las Vegas for Teboul. Just days before the Lucky 7s win, he also took down a $400 WSOP Daily Deepstack for $31,583.

“I feel very, very well because it’s not nothing to win a tournament in Las Vegas,” he said after his bracelet win. “It’s my fifth year here and this was the good year.”

Event 77: $1,500 Mixed NLHE; Pot Limit Omaha

This event featured two of poker’s most popular games and Sandeep Pulusani found his second bracelet. The player from Huntsville, Alabama, took home $277,949 for his efforts. The win came nine years after Pulusani’s first bracelet win.

Longtime poker pro Esther Taylor-Brady took runner-up for $171,787. The tournament brought in 1,234 entries for a $1.6 million prize pool.

Event 78: $2,500 NLHE

Canada’s Sebastien Aube, who lives in Quebec City, scored his first bracelet in this event for $499,636. The tournament produced 1,364 entries for a $3 million prize pool.

France’s Jilien Loire finished runner-up for $308,817. This was only Aube’s second WSOP cash and he was inspired by a poker pro to begin playing again over the last few years.

“I played recreationally in my 20s and when I opened my last business in the pandemic, I came upon the MasterClass of Daniel Negreanu,” he said after the win. “I always liked the guy so was like, ‘Alright, let’s go.’ He really psyched me up. It’s the same recipe to succeed in poker as it is in business, so it really called to me.”

Event 79: $10,000 Razz Championship

This lowball tournament attracts some big names and that continued this year. When the dust settled, another Frenchman found the top spot. Julien Martini won his fourth bracelet for $328,906. The tournament attracted 125 entries for a $1.2 million prize pool.

Martini is a bit of a mixed-game specialist with his previous bracelets coming in Omaha Hi/Lo, Short Deck, and Eight-Game Mix. Those latter two came in 2021 in the WSOP Europe.

He also finished third for $134,587 in the same Razz Championship in 2018. New York’s Hal Rotholz finished runner-up for $203,281.

Online Event 10: $3,200 High Roller

The online poker bracelet action returned on Tuesday and another Canadian found a win.  Julien Perouse, of Toronto, scored a bracelet and $324,767. This is the Canadian’s fourth cash, all in online events.

Poker pro Calvina Anderson finished runner-up for $202,627. He also added a runner-up finish in a WSOP.com Online Circuit event on the same day for $49,130.

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Event 80: $600 Mixed NLHE; Pot Limit Omaha Deepstack

This lower-buy-in event saw 2,107 entries for a $1.1 million prize pool. In the end, Latvia’s Romans Voitovs reached the winner’s circle for $158,609 and his first bracelet. New York’s Michael Dobbs finished runner-up for $98,026. 

Event 81: $5,000 Freezeout NLHE

Texans played a big part of the WSOP in the early days and one found a bracelet in this freezeout. Mohammad Arani, of Plano, Texas, scored his first bracelet for $665,459. The win came on his 52nd series cash and Arani credited another poker pro for helping him reach the finish line.

The tournament saw 756 entries for a $3.5 million prize pool. Johannes Straver, of the Netherlands, took runner-up for $411,279.

Event 82: $800 Eight-Handed NLHE Deepstack

Minnesota’s Richard Alsup took down this event for his first bracelet and $272,065. The poker pro topped a field of 2,812 entries, which created a $2 million prize pool.

“It feels phenomenal,” he said afterward. “I haven’t really been a bracelet chaser but this one is really special. It feels really special because my travel buddy Rob Wazwaz won the same event a month before. The stars aligned, I wasn’t even going to play.”

Gary Whitehead, of the United Kingdom, finished in second place for $168,093.

Event 83: $50,000 High Roller

The beefy price point action returned with Portugal’s João Vieira raising his hands in victory for his second bracelet. The tournament attracted 107 entries for a $4.6 million prize pool and Vieira snagged $1.4 million of that.

Vieira’s first bracelet came in 2019 in a $5,000 NLHE event for $758,011. He now has 83 WSOP cashes for $3.2 million. Spain’s Lander Lijo found the runner-up spot for $855,631.

Event 84: $3,000 HORSE

Another Texan scored not just a bracelet, but his second of the summer in this event. Lawrence Brandt rode the HORSE action to victory and a $205,319 payday. The tournament produced a field of 327 entries for a $873,090 prize pool.

In June, Brandt also won a $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-Lo event for $289,610. Along with Main Event champion Espen Jorstad and Daniel Zack, Brandt becomes the third double winner of the summer.

“It feels awesome because this is my first HORSE tournament,” Brandt said afterward. “The only reason I played this tournament was because I won the first one and I was staying around until the Tournament of Champions, so just running deep was a dream, getting to the final table was crazy. I came in third in chips today but was feeling really good and confident and the cards just went my way.”

New York’s Roberto Marin finished runner-up for $126,895. 

Event 85: $1,500 The Closer

New Jersey’s Minh Nguyen won one of the final events of the summer, taking down The Closer for $536,280 and his first bracelet. The event drew 2,968 entries for a $4 million prize pool. South Africa’s Ahmed Karrim finished runner-up for $331,470.

Event 86: $10,000 Six-Handed NLHE Championship

Gergory Jensen, of Ridgefield, Connecticut, found the top spot in this event for his first bracelet and $824,649. The Czech Republic’s Pavel Plesuv finished runner-up for $509,674 in an event that saw 394 entries for a $3.7 million prize pool.

Michael Wang shows off his latest piece of WSOP hardware. (photo courtesy WSOP)

Event 87: $5,000 Eight-Handed NLHE

Another New Jersey grinder found a win in this event. Michael Wang, of Livingston, earned his second bracelet and $541,604. Farid Jattin, of Miami, Florida, finished runner-up for $334,747.

Poker legend Erik Seidel took third for $238,321. The tournament brought in 573 entries for $2.6 million.

Online Event 11: $777 Lucky 7s Second Chance

The online action was back with Ohio’s Fred Li winning this one for $159,060. New York’s Zachary Okin took the silver medal for $98,291. The tournament attracted a prize pool of $854,700 from 781 entries.

Event 88: $1,000 Super Turbo No-Limit Hold’em

A Canadian again struck gold in this tournament. Jaspal Brar, of Edmonton, Alberta, won this quick-paced event for $190,731. Oregon’s Jese Lonis took runner-up for $117,872. The tournament saw 1,282 entries for $1.1 million. 

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Online Event 12: $5,300 High Roller Freezeout Encore

Italy’s Gianluca “Inmyhouse” Speranza scored this title for $324,625. Paul Scaturro, of Old Bridge, New Jersey, took second place for $189,875. The 245-entry created a $2.1 million prize pool.

Online Event 13: $500 NLHE Summer Saver

Another New Jersey player scored big here, with Succasunna’s Shaun “BabyLegs” O’Donnell taking the victory for $125,330. This is the first bracelet for the regular online grinder.

Benjamin Chung, of Los Angeles, finished runner-up for $77,275. The tournament brought in 1,189 entries for a $741,600 prize pool. 

Tournament of Champions

The $1 million freeroll is for any bracelet or WSOPC championship ring over the last year. After kicking off on Monday with 463 players, just 144 were to return to the action on Tuesday.

The TOC is the final event on the WSOP schedule and concludes on Wednesday with the winner walking away with a bracelet and a nice payout. The payouts haven’t been determined yet however. A total of 575 players were eligible and some of those can still enter on Day 2.

The UK’s Robert Cowen leads the field after winning the $50,000 High Roller PLO earlier in the series for $1.4 million. Check back to USPoker later in the week for the winner in this event.

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