Frankenberger Denies Phil Ivey 9th Career WSOP Bracelet

Andy Frankenberger
Andy Frankenberger defeats Phil Ivey to win his second WSOP bracelet.

In a huge upset victory Andy Frankenberger put the second notch in his WSOP belt early Monday morning, simultaneously denying Phil Ivey his ninth career bracelet.

Frankenberger outlasted a final table that included Hoyt Corkins, Matt Marafioti, Shaun Deeb and Ali Eslami before finally dispatching the man many consider to be the best poker player in the world.

“Winning a bracelet is everyone’s dream but beating Phil Ivey heads-up is a fairy tale. I can’t believe it just happened,” Frankenberger said moments after the victory was sealed.

In the books, Frankenberger officially won Event 17, $10,000 Pot-Limit Hold’em, for his second career WSOP bracelet. It earned him $445,899.

To make the night even more special, while Frankenberger was battling Ivey at the ESPN final table, Phil Hellmuth was busy winning a record 12th bracelet in the adjacent tournament room.

The spectator galleries at both heads-up matches were packed and the mood was by far the most raucous it’s been so far this summer.

But while Hellmuth was able to close out his match with old-school mixed-game pro Don Zewin, Ivey was overcome by the unorthodox stylings of Frankenberger.

Unorthodox Play Succeeds for Frankenberger

“He plays unlike anyone else I’ve ever played,” said Frankenberger of his heads-up opponent.

“My style is pretty unorthodox as well and I try to adjust to my opponents and the one thing I realized was that this min-raising the button thing just wasn’t working,” he said.

Andy Frankenberger and Phil Ivey
Frankenberger vs. Ivey

“The one thing I had going for me was that he didn’t want to play big flips against me and I don’t blame him. He’s a better player than I am so why would he want to flip when he could play small pots,” said Frankenberger.

Although Frankenberger’s strategy was somewhat hampered by the Pot-Limit format, it was made easier by extremely shallow stacks.

According to Frankenberger this victory means more to him than his first WSOP bracelet.

“I’d have to say this one is more satisfying because I beat Phil Ivey,” he said.

“The $1,500 I won had a lot of good players, it’s kind of like avoiding the mines in a minefield, but this one was just loaded with good players and I had to adjust my game throughout so coming away with the victory in this one was just extra special.”

This victory is just the latest step in a heater that’s been burning since Frankenberger swapped his career as a Wall Street trader to play poker professionally just a couple years ago.

Since then Frankenberger has racked up over $2.5 million in earnings, including a WPT main event, a WPT Player of the Year title, a Premier League Championship and now two WSOP bracelets.

“I just love the competition. Poker’s the ultimate intellectual game. There’s money on the line, there’s odds, there’s numbers. I just love all that stuff,” said Frankenberger.

Matt Marafioti
This is the second time Matt Marafioti has final-tabled this event.

“I’m really happy that I have the ability to make a living playing poker. I couldn’t be any luckier,” he said.

Ivey Just Misses Bracelet Bets

To make the defeat sting just a little more, Ivey not only missed out on the $445k first-place prize but a rumored millions in bracelet bets as well.

According to tablemate and third-place finisher Ali Eslami, just one of Ivey's bracelet bets was worth $900k alone.

At the absolute least he has a standing $250,000 bracelet bet with Daniel Negreanu.

Given Ivey's penchant for the gamble and his supreme confidence in his game, his overall total for his bracelet bets could be astronomical.

He's also likely to continue playing a very heavy schedule of events to increases his chances.

Corkins, Deeb, Marafioti Bust Before Heads-Up

A total of 179 players entered this year’s $10,000 Pot-Limit Hold’em championship and 18 were paid.

Among the players to make the money and fall short of the final table were ElkY Grospellier (18th), David Benyamine (16th), Chris Klodnicki (15th) and Antonio Esfandiari (12th).

Making the final table but ultimately bowing out short of the victory were a host of big names, including two-time bracelet winner Hoyt Corkins and online legend Shaun Deeb.

Matt Marafioti, who finished second in this event two years ago for $381,507, made a repeat appearance but busted in 7th.

Eslami, who cleared the way for the heads-up match by finishing third, made his sixth WSOP final table today.

Here are the full final table results:

  • 1. Andy Frankenberger - $445,899
  • 2. Phil Ivey - $275,559
  • 3. Ali Eslami - $199,345
  • 4. Alex Venovski - $147,345
  • 5. Manuel Bevand - $110,731
  • 6. Shaun Deeb - $84,668
  • 7. Matt Marafioti - $65,840
  • 8. Daniel Weinman - $52,059
  • 9. Hoyt Corkins - $41,829

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