Grinder Makes History, Wins 2nd $50k Players Championship

Michael Mizrachi
Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi

It seems hard to believe there was a time when Michael “The Grinder” Mizrachi was considered one of the best players without a WSOP bracelet.

On Thursday, Mizrachi became the first player in poker history to win the $50k Poker Players Championship twice.

“I can’t even explain how it feels to win the $50k Players Championship twice,” said Mizrachi. “It’s a dream come true.”

The 31-year-old Florida native dominated a turbo-speed final table and then beat Chris Klodnicki heads-up to claim the $1.4 million first-place prize in this year’s edition of the prestigious tournament.

Mizrachi won his first Poker Players Championship in 2010 when he outlasted 116 entries to win $1.55 million. At the time it was his first WSOP victory.

The Grinder has been on extraordinary run in the last few years with eight WSOP final tables, three bracelets and a fifth-place finish in the 2010 Main Event for $2.3 million.

In total Mizrachi has earned just over $7 million playing tournament poker from 2010 to now. With tonight’s victory Mizrachi passes Phil Hellmuth for fourth place in all-time tournament earnings with $14,069,765.

“I got a long ways to go,” said Mizrachi. “I’m only 31 years old and I have high expectations for myself.”

Michael Mizrachi
Michael "The Grinder" Mizrachi

Fastest $50k Players Championship Final Table Ends in Six Hours

This year’s $50k Players Championship was a bit easier than the marathon one Mizrachi won in 2010.

The entire final table played out in less than six hours. Bruno Fitoussi and Bill Chen busted on the very first hand of play.

Stephen Chidwick and Roland Israelashvili weren’t far behind as they busted sixth and fifth respectively.

The always-vocal Luke “Full Flush” Schwartz recorded his biggest live tournament cash ever when he was eliminated in fourth place for $406,736.

Andy Bloch had a chance to finally find redemption for finishing in second place to Chip Reese the first time this tournament was held but had the misfortune of hitting a set of queens against Mizrachi’s set of kings in a round of PLO.

 “I was getting all the cards,” admitted Mizrachi. “It’s tough to play against someone that’s just winning every hand.”

Mizrachi isn’t finished with big buy-in tournaments either as he already had plans to play the $1 million buy-in Big One this weekend. He already has a few backers and now he won't need any more.

“I’m sure everyone wants a piece now but I’m sold out!” laughed Mizrachi.

Here are the complete final table payouts for the $50k Poker Players Championship:

1. Michael Mizrachi – $1,451,6287
2. Chris Klodnicki – $896,935
3. Andy Bloch – $561,738
4. Luke Schwartz – $406,736
5. Roland Israelashvili – $317,882
6. Stephen Chidwick – $253,497
7. Bill Chen – $205,856
8. Bruno Fitoussi – $169,879

For all the action from the WSOP in Las Vegas click through to our 2012 World Series of Poker Live Coverage section, brought to you by

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