Thursday, June 10, 2010

2010 WSOP Day 13: The Carter Phillips Show

By Pauly
Las Vegas, NV

It was a battle for second place.

Going into the final two tables of Event #16 NL 6-handed, it had become apparent that Carter Phillips was going to win the bracelet as he amassed an intimating stack. The other remaining ten or so players were essentially playing for second place. Phillips run good slowed down a bit once the final table was set, but that was a mere inconsequential setback as he resumed his march towards the bracelet.

Carter Phillips - EPT Champion and WSOP Bracelet Winner

According to Nolan Dalla, Event #16 was the second youngest final table at the WSOP at 22.8 years, after FTrain and Jess Welman crunched the numbers. There's a slight technicality involving the youngest final table in the history of the WSOP since a five-handed shootout table last year had a lower average age.

At any rate, the old fogey at the table was Hugo Perez at 27. Man, writing that makes me feel kinda... old.

Young men drink in clubs and chase the muff around, while old men drink in bars and tell stories about chasing the muff around. Old men play Stud and Lowball, while young men prefer the accelerated pace of short-handed NL. It's not really surprising that the final table featured six young twenty-somethings because 6-max is a popular among the internet generation. Faster. Quicker. Action. More. Speed. Now.

Carter Phillips didn't exactly come out of nowhere. Sure, he showed up in Las Vegas as a WSOP rookie, but how many 21-year-olds do you know with $1 million in career live tournament earnings?

Prior to the WSOP, Carter Phillips had already won $1.3 million in his short professional career.
- In early 2009, Phillips just missed advancing to the final table at LAPT Chile in Vina del Mar.
- In September 2009, Phillips final tabled two events at the Barcelona Casino including a third place finish in a €1,000 side event and first place in the EPT Barcelona Main Event. He won $1.2 million.
- Phillips had deep runs at the EPT Prague and PCA.
- Finally 21 and able to play in US casinos, Phillips final tabled a Circuit event in Tunica (that was won by Paul Wasicka).
Apparently all of those tournaments were just a tune up for the WSOP. Few players win a bracelet at their first final table, yet that's what Carter Phillips achieved after he faded a field of 1,663 runners. He also took home $482,774, which is a nice score to add to his Hendon Mob file. He's now closing in on $2 million in career earnings.

With an EPT title and a bracelet under his belt, Phillips joined an elite club of players who have won both.
EPT Champions with WSOP Bracelets:
1. Rob Hollink
2. Roland de Wolfe
3. Gavin Griffin
4. Jason Mercier
5. Sebastian Ruthenberg
6. Carter Phillips
Thanks to Benjo for helping with the research. Back in 2006, I made a bet that Brandon Schaefer would win a bracelet in his lifetime. If Brandon can pull it out, then he'll join the elite list of EPT/Bracelet winners.

During his winner's interview moments after EVent #16 ended, Phillips mentioned that after he had won the 2009 EPT Barcelona, he set his sights on a WSOP bracelet. The kid walked the walk and talked the talk as a WSOP rookie. Phillips won a bracelet two weeks into the 2010 WSOP and crossed another goal off of his list. Phillips' new goal is to become the first repeat champion on the EPT. And a second bracelet wouldn't be too bad either.

* * * * *

Bouncin' Round the Room on Day 13...

Five tournaments on Wednesday after two lighter days including two final tables and two new events.

Event #13 Donkulus 2.0 Final Table: The two players I thought could win this event were the first two players to hit the road. EPT Champion Mats Gavatin was the first player to bust at the final table and Jared Hamby went out in 8th. David "OGDB" Baker (the original David Baker, and not the David Baker who we know as "Bakes" or "WhooooKid") went out in third. The bracelet came down to a heads-up match between Steven Gee vs. Matthew Vance with Gee taking it down.

Event #17 5K NL Day 2: What a treat... Phil Hellmuth right in front of the press box. Annette15 was in close proximity as well. I like watching her play live... sort of like getting a chance to see Jazz legends like a young Miles Davis perform at clubs in NYC in the early 1950s.

Annette15 min-cashed in 72nd place. Hellmuth cashed but busted in 50th. Action Bob finished in 44th. Jeff "yellowsub" Williams sat at the featured table in front of the press box for pretty much the entire Day 2 as one of the chip leader. Yellowsub channeled his inner architect and constructed multiple vertical columns instead of the basic 20-chip-high stacks which take up a lot of real estate.

French hottie, Alexia Portal, shared a table with Hellmuth for most of the afternoon. The actress survived a few rants from the Poker Brat, who kept his cool for most of the day but he had a few classic Hellmuth moments which might have annoyed his tablemates, but definitely entertained the crowd. At the least, it was perfect fodder for the media. Hellmuth rants are better than cliches, which as a writer I know that cliches often pay their weight in gold.

Portal had just arrived in Las Vegas and the 5K was her first event. She got off to a profitable start when she made the final three tables. She busted in 22nd place, which was good enough for her best finish at the WSOP.

They could not get down to a final table, so the remaining 18 players will return on Day 3 and play down to a bracelet. The chipleaders include Jason DeWitt, Jeff Williams, Amit Makhija, and Paul Foltyn.

My buddy Homer from Leeds insists that Paul Foltyn will be the next Brit to win a bracelet.

"He's better than (Chris) Moorman," explained Homer.

Also still alive are Antonio Esfandiari and David Benefield. Should be an interested final two tables on Thursday, especially since I have money than a third British players will win a bracelet this year.

Event #18 2K Limit Day 1: Day 1 of a LHE event? You couldn't get me to check that out unless naked chicks on the rail were handing out free samples of bacon-wrapped Vicodin.

Event #19 Low Ball Day 1: I usually don't pay much attention to Day 1s of 5pm events, but this one was kinda special. Nick Schulman won last year's event (that had been changed from the 5K Rebuy event). The event was a who's who of yesteryear with only a handful of twenty-something pros in the field of 101 runner, up from 96 from the year before.

Archie Karas made a cameo inside the Amazon Ballroom. I wondered who backed him into the event? Texas Dolly's table drew the most spectators, but I had a feeling that the average railbird knew very little about the game. David "Bakes/WhooooKid/Maridu's Boyfriend" Baker was among the chipleaders for most of the night.

Benjo noted that this was Johnny Chan's first appearance at the WSOP. What ever happened to his third-rate sugar water All In energy drink?

Photos courtesy of Harper, Benjo, and Wam-Poker.


  1. Surprised you didn't get a kickout of his online name. I think it's bdybldingpkrplyr.

  2. Poker Guide Dude2:52 PM

    Again, excellent coverage. And to the previous comment, that is a a hilarious screen name if it really is his.