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WSOP: John Phan Wins Event No. 40

Phan Takes His Second of the Series


John PhanOften referred to as the bridesmaid, never the bride, John Phan quieted his critics with a win in last week's $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em tournament. Last night, he may have quieted them for good by taking down the $2,500 Deuce-to-Seven Triple Draw Low Ball event. Phan overcame a major chip deficit three-handed, as well as a verbal fight from Gioi Luong to take his second career bracelet in event no. 40.

Here were the chip counts heading into the final table:

John Phan: 294,000
Gioi Luong: 291,000
Robert Mizrachi: 215,000
Shunjiro Uchida: 200,000
Ben Ponzio: 113,000
David Sklansky: 78,000

Here are highlights from all of the action, as featured in’s live coverage of the final table:

David SklanskyDavid Sklansky Running Low

A short stacked and card dead David Sklansky played a few hands all with the same result, as his stack is getting dangerously close to the felt.

David Sklansky Eliminated in Sixth Place ($20,528)

David Sklansky got his last 12,000 in against Robert Mizrachi. Sklansky knew he would need a great card on the third draw after Mizrachi stood pat with 8-7-5-3-2. Sklansky opened up a 6-4-3-2 and would need his final card to be a seven or an eight to double up. Unfortunately, he drew another six to pair up and hit the rail in sixth place.

Robert Mizrachi With the Second Nuts

Robert Mizrachi raised in the small blind and John Phan three-bet. Mizrachi called and drew two. Phan stood pat and announced to the table that he was snowing. Mizrachi then called a bet from Phan and drew two more. Phan stood pat and bet once again. Mizrachi then check-raised, announcing a snow of his own. Phan made the call and Mizrachi stood pat. Phan then faced a tough decision as he decided to break his hand and drew one. Mizrachi bet and Phan mucked, saying he broke a nine. Mizrachi was gracious enough to show him his 7-6-4-3-2 for the second nuts.

Ben PonzioBen Ponzio Eliminated in Fifth Place ($28,739)

John Phan raised and Ben Ponzio reraised from the button. Phan made the call and drew two and Ponzio drew one. Ponzio then got it all in and Phan called. Both players drew one again. On the third draw, both players showed their down cards and drew one more. Ponzio had the better draw with 7-5-4-2 against Phan's 8-7-4-3, but Phan drew a deuce to put the pressure on Ponzio. Ponzio needed a trey or a six to stay alive, but all he could manage was a ten to bust in fifth place.

Robert Mizrachi Getting Low

After getting frequently raised or reraised out of pots by the second draw, Robert Mizrachi is now treading water with just under 70,000.

John Phan Takes a Monster Lead

After betting the whole way and standing pat on the third draw, John Phan got another bet out of Shun Uchida and took the pot when he showed his 7-6 low. With Phan's relentless aggression, catching cards will make this a speedy final table. After taking a pot off of Robert Mizrachi, Phan is up over 630,000 and both Mizrachi and Uchida are below 100,000.

Gioi Luong Puts Himself Into Second

After making the wheel (7-5-4-3-2) against Robert Mizrachi, Gioi Luong put himself over 400,000 and squarely in second position on the leader board.

Robert MizrachiRobert Mizrachi Eliminated in Fourth Place ($41,055)

Robert Mizrachi was down to his last 30,000 and got it all in against Gioi Luong. Luong could only manage a 10-6-5-4-2 and it held when Mizrachi drew a jack to go along with his 8-6-4-2. Mizrachi was eliminated in fourth place, finishing just short of his second WSOP bracelet.

John Phan Rides the Short Stack

After spreading chips around the table, John Phan lost another huge pot to Shun Uchida when both stood pat after the third draw. Uchida opened up a 9-8-5-4-2 to send Phan further down the leader board. After the hand, Uchida and Luong were neck and neck for the chip lead.

Gioi Luong Takes Some More

After Shun Uchida opened up his chip lead, Gioi Luong closed the gap after taking a decent pot from John Phan. Phan made a 9-8 low, but Luong turned over his 9-6 to send the pot his way. After the hand, Phan was left with just over 6 big bets in his stack.

Gioi LuongJohn Phan and Gioi Luong Explode

It has become increasingly clear that John Phan and Gioi Luong do not like each other. It goes back to an earlier hand where John Phan mistakingly posted his big blind under the gun. Luong lobbied the floor to make his bet stand, despite the fact that the cards had yet to be dealt. The floor ruled in Phan's favor, and Phan accused Luong of angle shooting.

Fast forward to a few hands ago, when it all boiled over. Luong and Uchida were involved in a pot and before the draw, Luong stopped the dealer after he had discarded, because he had discarded the wrong card. Luong attempted to pick up his discard and Phan immediately began to shout, "That is not allowed!" over and over until the floor came over. Meanwhile, Luong angrily got into Phan's face, telling him to stay out of it. As it looked like the players were about to get physical, the floor ruled that Luong's discard must remain discarded and Phan got his wish.

The next hand, Luong stayed pat the whole way as he bet and Phan called. After the third draw, Luong announced his hand. Phan refused to believe what Luong was saying and Luong revealed his 7-6-6-4-2 for a pair of sixes. Phan then showed his 9-low to take the pot, telling the rail that Luong was lying about his cards. "He called the wrong hand," said Phan.

Shun UchidaShun Uchida Takes Advantage

With both Luong and Phan on edge, Shun Uchida has quietly amassed a huge chip lead with a series of pots taken down on either after the first or second draw. He now holds more than half of the chips in play.

Phan Climbs Up

In just two hands after coming back from dinner break, John Phan climbed to nearly 500,000 by making an 8-6 low against Shun Uchida. With the big bet at 40,000, the chips are flying back and forth.

Gioi Luong Eliminated in Third Place ($61,583)

Gioi Luong raised in the small blind and John Phan reraised in the big blind. Luong called and drew two and Phan stood pat. Phan put Luong all in and Luong called. Then, Luong stood pat, forcing Phan to break his hand. He drew two on the second draw and drew two on the third draw needing a miracle to catch Luong's 8-7-6-5-2. Stunned, Phan stood up and turned over 7-6-5-4-2 to take the pot and eliminate Luong in third place.

John Phan Wins Event No. 40 ($151,896)

After a series of relentless raises and reraises, John Phan made two hands, an 8-low and a 10-low to cripple Shun Uchida to his final five big bets or so. On the final hand, Uchida was in good shape drawing an 8-7, but Phan had drawn the second nuts, 7-6-4-3-2 to take the title.

After years of coming just short, 2008 has been kind to Phan as he took his second bracelet of the series.

Shun Uchida finished in second place, earning $95,795.



13 years ago

And the streak continues...consecutive years in which at least one person has won more than one bracelet in the same year. I was beginning to wonder...WTG Phan!!