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James Mackey Wins Event #22 at the WSOP

Mackey Becomes the Third-Youngest Bracelet Winner in History


"Life moves pretty fast; if you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."
- Ferris Bueller

The same could be said about the final table of the $5,000 no-limit hold'em (event #22), which lasted only 48 hands, and took just over two hours to unfold. James Mackey emerged as the victor, trumping both odds and experience.

According to many professional players, poker is very much a numbers game. By the numbers, 640 players put up $5,000 dollars to enter event this event, creating a prize pool of $3,012,700. The two chip leaders coming into the final table were unknowns, Karga Holt and Mackey. Among the other seven remaining players were two World Poker Tour wins, three bracelets, and nine World Series of Poker final tables (including two main events). Against all odds, Mackey trumped all of those previous results on his way to becoming one of the youngest bracelet winners ever.

Maciek "Michael" Gracz was making his second final table appearance of the 2007 WSOP. However, just into the second hour of play, Gracz pushed all in with pocket nines only to run into Mackey's queens. He failed to improve and was eliminated in ninth place, earning $43,684

John "Tex" Barch, best known for finishing third in the 2005 main event, had pocket kings cracked early on at the final table, and he was eliminated when he moved all in with A-10. Barch was called by Stuart Fox with A-J. Barch earned $60,254 for eighth place.

Jan Sorenson, a bracelet winner in seven-card stud, came into the day next-to-last in chips, and managed to double up early. However, he had pocket aces cracked by the pocket tens of Michael Binger, and earned $81,343 for seventh place.

Nick "The Takeover" Schulman, winner of the 2005 WPT World Poker Finals, came into his first WSOP final table third in chips, but he busted in sixth place, earning $108,457.

Karga Holt, the chip boss to start the day, and William McMahon finished in fifth ($140,091) and fourth place ($194,319), respectively. They both scored their first WSOP cashes in this event.

Michael Binger, the short stack at the beginning of the day, has been on a tear this year. His third-place finish marks his fifth cash of this year's WSOP. He received $295,245 to go with the $63,987 he has already won. His showing so far has proved that his third-place finish in last year's main event was no fluke.

Stuart Fox, who made two final tables at last year's WSOP, played only two hands of the 48 contested at the final table. He took home the second-place prize money of $448,892. He pushed all in with K 4 and was called by Mackey who held 10 2. The board ran out Q 9 7 10 10. Mackey claimed the bracelet and took home $730,740. Just 21 years old, from Columbia, MO, Mackey is the third-youngest bracelet winner in WSOP history, trailing only Steve Billirakis and Jeff Madsen.