Year of the Pro

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When the World Series of Poker was drawing near this year people were asking everyone and even themselves. Is this years World Series of Poker going to be yet again a year of the amateur or is it going to be once again the year of the pro. Well to most of every ones delight it is once again the year of the pro.

The year of the pro got started very quickly when Nenad Medic wasted no time in winning event #1 which is the pot-limit hold’em championship event. It was not an easy victory for Nenad who had to beat off a very stacked final table which included the great Patrick Antonius, MIT whizz kid Andy Bloch, Mike Sexton and Kathy Leibert. It was then only a couple of events later when Eric Lindgren won his first ever World Series of Poker bracelet during the $5,000 mixed hold’em event and something even more astonishing was David Singer won his first ever World Series of Poker bracelet on the same night during his $1,500 pot-limit hold’em event. It then did take awhile before another pro won a bracelet and it was not until event #18 when Mike “The Mouth” Matusow took down the 2-7 NL draw w/rebuys. This bracelet that Mike won was his third World Series of Poker bracelet and he says it will not be his last so we will have to stay tuned into Mike Matusow. Then just two events later one of the most popular figures in poker took down event #20 which was the $2,000 limit hold’em event and the player to take it down was none other then Kid Poker himself Mr. Daniel Negreanu. It has been awhile since we saw Daniel win a bracelet and a matter of fact, the last bracelet that Daniel won was the $2,000 limit hold’em event back in 2004, if Daniel wins another we just might have to give him the title of best limit hold’em player ever but we will have to see.

It is now in the second half of the World Series of Poker and the pros get started up again in event #24 the pot-limit hold’em/omaha when the “Italian Pirate” Max Pescatori outlasted the pro heavy field of 457 players. Then in the very next tournament during the $10,000 heads-up championship “Sick Call Kenny” Kenny Tran took down the championship and the bracelet which gave Kenny his first ever World Series of Poker bracelet as well. It was like a 1,2,3 punch combo because in the very next event after Max’s and Kenny’s wins back to back, Barry Greenstein had to get in on the winning as well and win himself his third World Series of Poker bracelet in event #26 the $1,500 razz tournament. It was then in event #28 the $5,000 pot-limit omaha w/rebuys when “Oh My God!!!” Phil Galfond (also known as “OMGclayaiken” in the online community) took down his very first World Series of Poker bracelet even after playing one of the most difficult final tables in the 2008 World Series of Poker. The table had featured the likes of 2-time Main event champion Johnny Chan, 11-time bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth, 4-time and not to long ago bracelet winner Daniel Negreanu, David Benyamine, John Juanda and fellow online heavy hitter Adam “the_houdini” Hourani. Another up-and-coming player and once chip leader in last years main event “Mr. Harry Potter” Dario Minieri took down event #31 the $2,500 NL hold’em six-handed tournament and Dario won his first ever World Series of Poker Bracelet.

Well here we are under 20 events left to go and we already have 10 pros that have won bracelets compared to last year at this time only 5 pros have won bracelets. In event #34 the $1,500 pot-limit omaha w/rebuys Mr. Layne Flack was good enough to take down his 6th, yes I said 6th World Series of Poker bracelet. It was then only three events later during the $10,000 omaha hi/low world championship when David Benyamine dominated the final table to take him his first World Series of Poker bracelet. It was then during the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E tournament when another pro took it down BABY!!!! It was ScottyNguyen Baby!!!! With this title Scotty Nguyen pocket over $1.2 million and his 5thWorld Series of Poker bracelet. With less then 5 events left to play during event #49 J.C. Tran decided to get his hands in the pot and take down the $1,500 NL hold’em event for his first World Series of Poker bracelet.

Well that would be it for all of the tournaments except for the 39th annual World Series of Poker Main Event but we will not know who wins that tournament until the “November Nine” finish up their play on November 9th and our only hope for another pro to take down another tournament this year is up to David “Chino” Rheem who currently sits in 7th position with over $10 million in chips and for a pro that is certainly enough to work with. So lets all get behind David and cheer him on and lets say congrats to all of the pros that not only won this year but made it far into their events but just came up a little short. CONGRATS PROS!!!!

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