Top Five Players Who Deserve a Bracelet

17 June 2008, Created By: Arthur Crowson
Posted in: WSOP Blog , PokerListed
Top Five Players Who Deserve a Bracelet
With Erick Lindgren and David Singer finally gaining entrance into the exclusive WSOP bracelet-holder's club, now is as good a time as any to point out a few more pros who've been waiting a long time to put a piece of poker history on their wrist.

Yesterday our resident Harrah's blogger Nolan Dalla gave props to the 10 players he's rooting for in this year's WSOP.

I thought I would present my own list of the five best players lacking a bracelet. This is merely based on how long a player has been playing, the level at which they play and the success they've had without winning a WSOP title.

Liz Lieu
Liz looking for some Lieu't.

5. Liz Lieu

Liz Lieu regularly plays in some of the biggest cash games around and if that doesn't give her a nod for WSOP success I don't know what does.

Not only does Liu ante up with the big boys in the high stakes cash games she has also been on a killer roll of in-the-money finishes over the eight months or so. She made back-to-back final tables at the APPT Main Event and $15,000 High Roller Event, she cruised to cash at EPT San Remo and she's already got one cash at the 2008 WSOP.

Although she doesn't crack the top 10 of the women's all time money list it's important to remember that she didn't just win one big tournament and then sit on her laurels for the next five years. Lieu has consistently been a threat at big buy-in tournaments for the last few years and it goes without question that she deserves a piece of gold on her wrist to go with the rest of her jewelry.

J.C. Tran
One of the few Tran's without a bracelet.

4. J.C. Tran

J.C. Tran's aggressive play has garnered him nearly $6 million in tournament cashes, which makes him 26th on the all-time money list.

Most of Tran's success has come on the World Poker Tour with five final tables including a first and a second place finish. Amazingly three of those final tables came in 2007 alone.

Tran has also had success at the WSOP and in 2006 he cashed a stunning six times including finishing runner-up to Kevin Nathan in one of the $1,500 No-Limit events.

You don't get that high the money list by accident and J.C. Tran is considered to be one of the best players in the world. It's amazing he hasn't won a WSOP bracelet by now.

Michael Mizrachi
Come on, man, even your brother has a bracelet.

3. Michael Mizrachi

Michael Mizrachi has grinded his way into over $6 million in tournament winnings, which places him 22nd on the all time money list (just ahead of J.C. Tran ironically). Incredibly he's yet to have a single victory at the WSOP.

Mizrachi smashed his way onto the poker scene by finishing fifth at the 2005 WPT Event in Tunica and then taking down the WPT LAPC that same year. He went on to add another WPT victory in Borgata and a second place finish in Tunica.

In a world where consistency pays Mizrachi is near the top. Mizrachi has over 80 cashes on his Hendon Mob resume and they've all occurred since 2004. You're unlikely to find another player with that many cashes in that period of time.

Last year Michael's brother Robert took down a WSOP event so there's no doubt that it's likely getting annoying for Michael. It's incredible the "Grinder" doesn't have a bracelet already.

Gus Hansen
One of these days, Gus.

2. Gus Hansen

Are you starting to see a trend here? For some reason a great number of the players who have absolutely dominated the WPT in the past have yet to make much noise at the WSOP.

Hansen burst onto the poker scene in the early years of the WPT and pretty much became the face of the new tour by winning three titles in the first few years of its existence.

The "Great Dane" has since gone on to receive many poker accolades and is 15th on the all-time money list with $7,170,846. He's also fifth on the WPT all-time list would likely be on every poker fan's best without a bracelet list.

Hansen finished 10th in this year's $10,000 mixed event so maybe this will be the year he finally breaks through and gets himself a WSOP bracelet.

Andy Bloch
Still waiting for the Bloch-buster victory.

1. Andy Bloch

It's been said before but you absolutely can't go wrong ranking Andy Bloch as the player most deserving a WSOP bracelet.

A strategic player, Bloch has used his keen intellect to grab nearly $4 million in tournament winnings over the past fifteen years of playing poker.

One of the main reasons for putting Bloch on a list like this is the fact that he has come as close as you possibly can without winning. In fact he did it twice. In 2006 Andy Bloch fought the late Chip Reese to a standstill at the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E. event. Despite eventually losing to Reese, it was a stunning finish for Bloch.

It was the first year the tournament was held and it is still considered to be one of the best, if not THE best, test of a true poker player's skills.

A true mixed game player Bloch has proven that he can play virtually any game he pleases and excel at it. In 2008 Bloch finished runner-up to Chris "Jesus" Ferguson in the NBC National Heads-up Tournament.

If there's any justice in the world Bloch will soon be able to leave himself out of the best without a bracelet category.

Thoughts? Comments? Angry threats? Mad at me for not including Joe Sebok, Gavin Smith or Patrik Antonius? Want to win your own WSOP bracelet? Ship your comments to the comment box below.



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