Hale Holds Off Steinberg for WPT Legends Title

Josh Hale. (Photo: BJ Nemeth, World Poker Tour)

Josh Hale is the 2012 WPT Legends of Poker champion and $500,000 richer this morning after holding off Max Steinberg last night to earn the title.

Coming into the final table as the massive chip leader, things looked promising for Hale to take hist first-ever major title but it wasn't a direct line to the finish by any means.

Having 60% of the chips five-handed, Hale actually entered heads-up play down 14 million to 4 million to Max Steinberg.

Steinberg, who came in as the short stack, had eliminated every single player at the table to take the lead but couldn't finish off the comeback.

Hale quickly doubled up with a rivered flush to take the lead back and then slowly eroded Steinberg's stack away for the title.

Steinberg earned $293,490 for his runner-up finish and more than likely a few fans when the episode airs for his epic run.

Madsen, Mueller, Eslami Exit First

Max Steinberg
Valiant effort by Steinberg falls short.

The three biggest names at the final table were the first to hit the rail.

Jeff Madsen, playing at his first WPT final table after three near misses, was close in chips with Steinberg to start but didn't have his kind of luck.

Shoving in with A 3, Madsen ran into Steinberg's aces and that was it for his day.

Greg "FBT" Mueller, coming in second in chips and looking like a strong contender at his second WPT final table, was surprisingly the next player to go.

Dipping down to about 2 million in chips, Mueller shoved from under the gun with sevens but got looked up by Steinberg's A K.

A king on the turn was all she wrote for Mueller.

Eslami, crippled to just 2 big blinds at one point four-handed, made a valiant comeback of his own to get back up over 4 million in chips.

But cracked kings knocked him back down before he lost a race with Steinberg to drop out in fourth.

Third-place finisher Raouf Malek also fell at the hands of Steinberg, losing his stack with a river call and a king-high straight only to see Steinberg flip over the ace-high straight.

For a full recap of all the action, check the WPT Live Updates.

WPT Legends of Poker Final Table Results:

  • 1. Josh Hale - $500,000
  • 2. Max Steinberg - $293,490
  • 3. Raouf Malek - $192,400
  • 4. Ali Eslami - $133,700
  • 5. Greg Mueller - $97,100
  • 6. Jeff Madsen - $75,400

The next stop on the World Poker Tour is the WPT Grand Prix de Paris at the famed Aviation Club starting September 10.

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