WSOP Player of the Year Race heats up as Shaun Deeb wins $25K PLO Event

Shaun Deeb has won his third bracelet at the 2018 WSOP, defeating Ben Yu heads up in the $25K PLO Event to bank a career best score of $1,402,683. Deeb had to navigate a field of 230 talented players to win the event, including his heads-up opponent, who he lost a heads-up battle with during last year’s $10K 2-7 Triple Draw event at the WSOP.

Shaun Deeb EV42 Day4 WSOP 18 M3DM0133
Shaun Deeb – Photo WSOP

When interviewed after the event, he said “No one really ever put me in a bad spot. I was able to control the pot sizes the way I wanted to almost every hand. That really helps, to not get in an inflated pot with a marginal hand. Everyone played their best game, I just ran the best”.

The final table saw a dangerous collection of opponents stalking the felt, including defending champion James Calderado, high stakes pro Jason Koon and old school legend Scotty Nguyen. In the end it came down to Deeb and his old foe Ben Yu, with both players beginning heads-up play as two-time bracelet winners.

By the end, Deeb had joined the more exclusive club of three-time winners and could yet bag more this summer as he has been multi tabling live at events at the World Series this summer. This bracelet chasing strategy is an unorthodox one which doesn’t always seem to work well for players, but it has now propelled Deeb to the top of the 2018 Player of the Year standings.

Final Table Payouts 
1st: Shaun Deeb, $1,402,683
2nd: Ben Yu, $866,924
3rd: Scotty Nguyen, $592,875
4th: James Calderaro, $414,134
5th: Jason Koon, $295,606
6th: Ryan Tosoc, $215,718
7th: David Benyamine, $161,020
8th: Bogdan Capitan, $123,004

John Henningan

John Hennigan 2018 WSOP EV33 Final Table Giron 8JG6136
John Hennigan – Photo WSOP

The Player of the year standings may have a new front-runner, but he still has strong competition, particularly from John Hennigan who picked up his fifth career bracelet this year in the $10K HORSE event, before narrowly missing out on becoming a two-time winner of the $50K Poker Player’s Championship. He eventually finished 2nd to the unstoppable Michael Mizrachi, who became the first man to win the event three times.

2018 WSOP POY Standings

Place Player Points
1 Shaun Deeb 2,662.25
2 John Hennigan 2,566.43
3 Elio Fox 2,010.14
4 Mario Prats Garcia 1,751.25
5 Eric Baldwin 1,738.42
6 Paul Volpe 1,733.12
7 Joe Cada 1,692.71
8 Ben Yu 1,587.71
9 Ryan Bambrick 1,431.46
10 Jesse Martin 1,427.52

Article by Craig Bradshaw