Online Poker

Ivey’s WSOP – Bracelets, Prop Bets and All That Jazz

by Poker Team

For the vast majority of pro’s and recreational players, the prestige of a bracelet and prospect of a handsome payday are the main attractions for entering the World Series of Poker. The former is big carrot for a certain Phil Ivey, as he seeks to cement his status as the best player on the planet. The latter, not so much. Main Event and $50K H.O.R.S.E aside, even a first place cash won’t ruffle Ivey’s bank feathers.

Of course, it is impossible to pinpoint Ivey’s exact fortune or bankroll. But the consistent profits on Full Tilt’s highest stakes tables, relentless tournament success, and Full Tilt sponsorship and part ownership (believed to be up to 9%) give us a decent clue. Although more comfortable in cash games, his tournament triumphs include a Monte Carlo Millions title in 2005 and WPT L.A. Classic victory for $1,596,100 last year. Ivey totals over $10 million in career winnings. He may engage in craps sessions at his own casino suite, bet heavily on Baseball and NBA and dabble in Chinese Poker on a private jet, but it’s hard to see how someone so cool and measured on the green felt will let gambling get out of hand.

So, what of Ivey’s WSOP 2009 so far? Quite remarkable – along with Brock Parker, he is the only player to have scooped two bracelets. Ivey admitted he was still, ‘getting to grips with the game’ when he clinched victory in the $2500 2-7 Lowball event, for $96,367. A few days later, he followed up with a 1st in the mixed $2500 Omaha/Stud Hi-Lo event for $220,538. On top of these triumphs, he has made two other cashes. The winnings barely cover the amounts gained and lost in a single online session. Ivey can be seen sitting with a $100,000 stack almost daily at the $500/1000 games on Full Tilt. With 7 bracelets, he is now tied with Billy Baxter in 6th for all time treasures.  At only 33, Phil Hellmuth’s record of 11 bracelets looks not only matchable, but easily surpassable.

The things that are really fuelling gossip amongst poker enthusiasts are, however, the wild proposition bets Ivey has in place for the WSOP. Golf and prop-bets seem to integrate seamlessly into the life of a poker pro. The exact figures riding on Ivey’s WSOP are far from concrete. Up to $10 million has been floated amongst media and forum circles, with Ivey reluctant to specify, out of courtesy towards fellow wagers. What is certain, is that his first bracelet win amassed him a fortune. It has been mooted that Ivey scooped $1.25 million from Eli Elezra, a ‘six figure sum’ believed to be up to $3 million from Ted Forrest (these two bet heavily on the 2008 outcomes) and something from Daniel Negreanu, who chanted across to spectators, ‘1-0 to me Phil!’ when he secured a Limit bracelet earlier in the series. The winnings will not all go to Ivey, of course, with close pal Barry Greenstein amongst others involved in the proposition syndicate.

To put it simply, Phil Ivey is a machine. A money-making machine. His unflappable, verging on robotic persona on the tables makes him the greatest player in the world. As quoted in the ‘Life of Ivey’ series on, he attributes his success to his natural ‘feel’ for the game. Still relatively young for a poker player, there is, pardon the pun, No Limit to what this man can achieve.

  • sam m

    Jeff Lisandro has joined Ivey and Parker now with 2 bracelets in the WSOP =)

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