$50K: Rast Fades 3 Flush Draws to Defeat Hellmuth
Phil Hellmuth had Brian Rast on the ropes with a 5.6-to-1 chip lead in heads-up play, but he couldn't cross the finish line.
In three post-flop all-in situations, Rast had the better hand against a flush draw from Hellmuth, and each time Rast's hand held up. The first two double-ups brought them nearly even in chips, and the third won the tournament for Rast.
Here were the approximate chip counts before Hellmuth's world turned upside-down.
Phil Hellmuth - 16,570,000
Brian Rast - 2,630,000
HAND #210: BRIAN RAST DOUBLES THRU PHIL HELLMUTH
After a flop of 10♥ 4♥ 4♠, Rast bet, Hellmuth moved all in, and Rast reluctantly called with A♦ K♥ for ace high. Hellmuth turns over 9♥ 6♥ for a heart flush draw.
As always, Hellmuth went to the rail to sweat the turn and river with his wife.
The turn was the Q♣, the river was the 2♠, and Rast won the pot with his ace high to double up.
Phil Hellmuth - 13,940,000
Brian Rast - 5,260,000
HAND #213: BRIAN RAST DOUBLES THRU PHIL HELLMUTH (AGAIN)
Three hands later, they were all in again.
After a flop of K♣ J♣ 4♦, Rast bet, Hellmuth raised, and Rast moved all in.
Hellmuth called with 10♣ 8♣ for a club flush draw, and Rast turned over K♠ 7♦ for a pair of kings. Hellmuth went to his rail to sweat the turn and river with his wife.
Doesn't this ring a bell?
The turn was the K♦, the river was the 6♥, and Rast won the pot with trip kings to double up yet again.
Phil Hellmuth - 9,950,000
Brian Rast - 9,250,000
HAND #215: BRIAN RAST TAKES THE LEAD
Two hands later, Rast and Hellmuth played a pot worth about 2 million on a board of K♦ 4♣ 2♠ 3♠ J♠. They both checked the turn, Rast bet the river, and Hellmuth called.
Rast turned over Q♠ 4♠ to win the pot with a spade flush, and Hellmuth mucked.
That gave Rast the chip lead.
Brian Rast - 10,455,000
Phil Hellmuth - 8,745,000
HAND #217: BRIAN RAST WINS THE WHOLE DAMN THING
Two hands later, Hellmuth was stunned and it was all over.
Phil Hellmuth raised to 400,000, and Brian Rast called. The flop came J♦ 10♠ 9♦, Rast bet 500,000, and Hellmuth moved all in for more than 8 million.
Rast said, "I have the nuts," and he called with K♣ Q♣ for a king-high straight.
Hellmuth turned over 8♦ 2♦ for a diamond flush draw and a (now meaningless) open-ended straight draw.
For the third time in eight hands, Hellmuth went over to the rail to sweat the turn and river with his wife. Only this time, he wasn't hoping to win bracelet #12 -- he was hoping to stay alive.
Hellmuth wanted a diamond, but the turn was the 5♥. The river was the 8♠, and Brian Rast won the pot -- and the WSOP's $50,000 Poker Players' Championship -- with a king-high straight.
Rast ran to celebrate with his friends on the rail, while Hellmuth wandered back toward the table, eventually congratulating Rast when he finished his initial celebration.
Phil Hellmuth records his third second-place finish of the 2011 WSOP, coming tantalizingly close to his 12th bracelet but never quite reaching it.
As a consolation prize, Hellmuth earns $1,063,034, which is the biggest tournament prize of his career. His previous high was $755,000, which he won for a little tournament called the WSOP Main Event back in 1989.
Yes, this was Phil Hellmuth's first seven-figure cash.
But the story of the night was Brian Rast, who seemed to control the tempo of the game when it was four-handed, begin heads-up play nearly even in chips, and then watch Hellmuth build up a huge chip lead before Rast turned it around in the span of eight hands.
Rast, who won his first bracelet earlier this Series, becomes the first (only?) multiple-bracelet winner of the year, in addition to winning the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy and $1,720,328.
Brian Rast adds his name to the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy alongside previous winners Chip Reese, Freddy Deeb, Scotty Nguyen, David Bach, and Michael Mizrachi.
Congratulations to Brian Rast!
1st Place: Brian Rast - $1,720,328
2nd Place: Phil Hellmuth - $1,063,034
3rd Place: Minh Ly - $665,763
4th Place: Owais Ahmed - $482,085
5th Place: Matt Glantz - $376,750
6th Place: George Lind - $300,441
7th Place: Scott Seiver - $243,978
8th Place: Ben Lamb - $201,338
As exciting as this final table was, the WSOP Main Event begins tomorrow (later today?) at 12:00 noon. Stay tuned.
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