WSOP 2008 Event #11, $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout, Final Results and Report

WSOP 2008 Event #11, $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout, Final Results and Report

Number of Entries: 360
Total Net Prize Pool: $ 1,692,000
June 6-8, 2008

Philip Tom
Philip Tom

Final Results

  Name Prize City State/Country
1 Philip Tom $477,990 Las Vegas Nevada
2 Greg Mueller $298,638 Vancouver British Columbia, Canada
3 Leo Wolpert $187,812 Fairfax Virginia
4 Sirous Jamshidi $118,440 Philadelphia Pennsylvania
5 Timothy West $63,450 Los Angeles California
6 Thomas Roupe $38,070 Houston Texas
7 John Juanda $16,920 Las Vegas Nevada
8 John Murphy $16,920 Walnut Creek California
9 Elton Beebe $16,920 Austin Texas
10 Eugene Katchalov $16,920 New York New York
11 Richard Kirsch $16,920 Pompano Beach Florida
12 John Monnette $16,920 Irvine California
13 Eric Froelich $16,920 Springfield Virginia
14 Adam Levy $16,920 Orlando Florida
15 William Palmer $16,920 Palos Heights Illinois
16 Remy Biechel $16,920 Ste. Genevieve Missouri
17 Robert Firestone $16,920 Santa Barbara California
18 Gabriel Costner $16,920 Long Beach Mississippi
19 William Blanda $16,920 Galveston Texas
20 Burt Boutin $16,920 Henderson Nevada
21 Alex Jacob $16,920 Tulsa Oklahoma
22 Gregg Turk $16,920 Raleigh North Carolina
23 Maciek Gracz $16,920 Las Vegas Nevada
24 Erik Siedel $16,920 Las Vegas Nevada
25 Jacobo Fernandez $16,920 Hollywood Florida
26 Evan McNiff $16,920 San Diego California
27 Christopher Howard $16,920 Hampshire United Kingdom
28 Isaac Haxton $16,920 Las Vegas Nevada
29 Joe Sebok $16,920 Rancho Palos Verdes California
30 Andrey Zaichenko $16,920 Moscow Russian Federation
31 Mats Gavatin $16,920 Stockholm Sweden
32 Tony Gouga $16,920 Kaunas Lithuania
33 Paul Roper $16,920 Co Sligo Ireland
34 Ariel Schneller $16,920 New York New York
35 Ryan Thurlow $16,920 New York New York
36 Pier Ruscalla $16,920 Asti Italy


Tournament Notes

The $5,000 buy-in No-Limit Hold’em Shootout attracted 360 entrants. The total prize pool amounted to $1,692,000. The top 36 places (which included all players who progressed to the second round) each collected prize money.

A “Shootout” means the objective is to win all the chips at a table in order to advance to the next round. On Day One, the tournament began with 360 players competing in what amounted to a ten-handed Sit n’ Go. One player from each table (the winner) progressed to play in the second round. On Day Two, those 36 winners were divided into six tables, each playing a six-handed Sit n’ Go. The six winners from this round progressed to Day Three to take a seat at the final table – which was played six-handed. Essentially, the winner of the tournament was required to win three consecutive Sit n’ Go rounds.

A Shootout emphasizes short-handed poker skills. This generally requires competitors to play cards out of the standard range of starting-hand requirements. It also makes post-flop skill paramount to victory. In a sense, each round is a “final table” for all the competitors since the objective is to accumulate chips and eliminate opponents.

The tournament was played over three days. On Day Three, the final table was dealt out on the ESPN stage, also known as the “feature table.” The secondary final table, located adjacent to the main stage area, featured the conclusion of Event #12 in an intentional scheduling overlap. This year, most days at the WSOP will include two final tables.

This was the third WSOP event of the year to be featured by Bluff Media on the ESPN360 website. Viewers around the world can log on at and watch final tables live. Broadcasts are also archived at the official WSOP website: Bluff will feature 21 more WSOP events to be held over the next month. The broadcasts begin daily at 2 pm PST. Note: On some days, events will begin later due to unforeseen tournament length times on the previous day.

This was the first all North American final table of the 2008 WSOP. There were five Americans and one Canadian amongst the final six players. All other 11 events so far this year included a multinational final table composition.

All players started with an equal number of chips at the beginning of each round. Hence, there was no “chip leader” at the start of the final table.

The winner was Phillip Tom, from Las Vegas, NV. He is a 55-year-old financial advisor and investor. He plays poker very seriously, but would still be categorized as an amateur player.

Through the conclusion of Event #11, nine professionals have won WSOP gold bracelets versus two amateurs.

Tom was born in 1953. As a good luck charm, Tom uses a Benjamin Franklin silver half dollar as a card protector, appropriately minted in 1953.

Tom lives next door to the former owners of Binion’s Horseshoe, which owned the WSOP through 2003. Oscar Goodman, Mayor of Las Vegas, also lives a few houses away.

Tom collected $477,990 for first place. He also earned his first WSOP gold bracelet. This was Tom’s first-ever final table at the World Series.

Phillip Tom made the following remarks in a post-tournament interview:

I really think this sort of format (the Shootout) fit my playing style. I have to eliminate players as I go along, and the seats are not re-filled. So, you can concentrate on the task at hand, which is focus on your opponents who are actually at the table.

It’s a great feeling. This is what it’s all about – to win at the World Series.

The second-place finisher was Greg Mueller, from Vancouver, BC (Canada) who is beginning to feel the effects of going deep in many tournaments without a major win. If they gave away gold bracelets for finishing high but not winning, I’d be Erik Seidel, the good-natured former pro hockey player remarked afterward.

Mueller could be proud of his performance. Lesser players would have certainly busted out earlier. He also remarked: Overall, I was very happy with the way I played. All day, I really did not get too many hands. I thought I played good. But I just didn’t close the deal.

Another quote from Mueller: There’s only so much you can do without cards, especially when playing short-handed. If you can’t show a hand at some point people are just going to call you down. It’s frustrating because I really want to win that gold bracelet…yeah, the money is important but the gold bracelet really matters most to me.

Final Table play began at 2 pm and ended at 9:40 pm. A total of 176 were dealt.

There were a number of notable finishes in this tournament. Places 7-36 were essentially equal in stature, since all players in those places on the official money list performed equally – winning the first round, but losing in the second.

Bill Edler won this event last year. He entered this year’s tournament but did not cash.

Eight-time gold bracelet winner Erik Seidel finished in-the-money. This was his 47th career WSOP cash. He now ranks seventh on the all-time list in that category.

Three-time gold bracelet winner John Juanda finished in-the-money. This marked his 40th career WSOP cash. He is now tied for 12th place on the all-time list with Thor Hansen.

Other former gold bracelet winners who cashed included Eric Froehlich, Burt Boutin, and Maciek Gracz. Another milestone was cross by Gracz in this event as he now has over $3 million in lifetime poker tournament winnings.

Through the first 11 events of the 2008 WSOP only one player currently has four cashes. He is Nikolay Evdakov, from Moscow, Russia. One player, Matthew Graham, from New Orleans, LA has cashed three times. There are 74 players with two cashes each.