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The 2018 Card Player Poker Tour Venetian DeepStack Showdown $3,500 buy-in no-limit hold’em main event drew a field of 341 entries, up from 235 in 2017. The strong turnout blew past the $500,000 guarantee to ...


Joey Couden Tops Negreanu, Matusow, Elezra and Fitoussi For First WSOP Bracelet

Couden Earns First Bracelet and $244,370 First-Place Prize

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At a final table that included the likes of bracelet winners Daniel Negreanu (9th), Mike Matusow (4th), and Eli Elezra (3rd), as well as $50,000 Poker Players Championship runner-up Bruno Fitoussi (2nd), it was relative unknown Joey Couden from Columbus, Ohio who emerged with the title, his first World Series of Poker bracelet, and a $244,370 payday.

Couden topped a field of 935 in the $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha Eight-Or-Better event, winning the lion’s share of a $1,262,250 prize pool. Although not as accomplished as the bracelet winners at his final table, Couden had put together a solid summer leading up to the tournament.

Couden had already recorded seven cashes, with multiple deep runs in mixed games events. After a 30th-place showing in the $1,500 Dealer’s Choice, he took 12th in the $10,000 Dealer’s Choice. Then he took 18th in the $10,000 H.O.R.S.E., and 15th in the $2,500 Mixed Big Bet before breaking through for a win.

“I felt pretty good all summer,” Couden said to WSOP reporters. “Just wanted to stay focused. As long as I don’t make any mistakes, I feel fine where I bust, it’s variance.”

Other notables to make a deep run included Bryce Yockey (11th), Quinn Do (15th), Brandon Cantu (24th), Lee Watkinson (27th), Brendan Taylor (35th), Jeff Williams (39th), Phil Hellmuth (43rd), and Kate Hoang (53rd).

Here is a look at the final table results.

Place Player Payout POY Points
1 Joey Couden $244,370 912
2 Bruno Fitoussi $150,990 760
3 Eli Elezra $106,193 608
4 Mike Matusow $75,708 456
5 Christopher Conrad $54,738 380
6 Kim Kallman $40,141 304
7 Dustin Pattinson $29,862 228
8 Greg Jamison $22,541 152
9 Daniel Negreanu $17,268 76

For more coverage from the summer series, visit the 2018 WSOP landing page complete with a full schedule, news, player interviews and event recaps.