Scott Blumstein, a New Jersey native, defeated Dan Ott in a lengthy heads-up match, never once surrendering the lead, to become the 2017 WSOP Main Event champion, winning $8.15 million.
Blumstein had a slight chip lead over John Hesp (4th place finisher) heading into the final table on Thursday.
He quickly increased that lead and by the start of three-handed play on Saturday evening, he had 64-percent of the chips in play and a 3-1 lead over his nearest competitor, Ott.
A Bad Beat Sends Everyone Home
After 59 hands of heads-up play, well after midnight in Las Vegas, Ott was desperate for a double-up. He was nearly at a 5-1 chip disadvantage. Blumstein continually hit the flop and was pushing his opponent around.
Ott finally found that opportunity to double-up and start chipping away at Blumstein’s stack on the 246th hand of the final table. He looked down at A♦8♦ in the big blind, facing an all-in bet. After pondering his decision for a few minutes, he talked himself into making the call, and it was the right move. Blumstein had A♥2♦.
The flop and turn ran out just fine for Ott. Blumstein had no pair and no draw with the board reading J♠6♠5♥7♥. Dan was 93-percent to win the hand and double-up to around 128 million chips.
But, as any poker player will tell you, unless you’re a 100-percent favorite to win a hand, you’re never a lock. As you may have guessed, the 2♥ flipped over on the river to end the tournament. What a sick bad beat to end poker’s most prestigious event.
Don’t feel too bad for Ott. He won’t become the world champion, but he did take home a nice parting gift of $4.7 million. He had no prior recorded live tournament cashes on the Hendon Mob poker database.
About the World Champion
Scott Blumstein, 25, wasn’t a household name until the final table began. Now, he’s a poker legend, having shipped the most prestigious tournament in the world.
This was his biggest win, but it wasn’t his first major victory. In 2016, he won $199,000 for first place in a $560 Deepstack event at Borgata in Atlantic City. Prior to the Main Event, he had over $300,000 in lifetime tournament winnings.
If you’re expecting to see Blumstein, with his new found wealth, join the high-stakes poker circuit, you’ll be disappointed.
“I don’t have an ego in this game. I check my ego at the door. Just two weeks ago I was a New Jersey online grinder and nothing has really changed. Having the money, am I going to play a little more live poker? Probably. But I’m probably going to choose where I go based on location and what works for me as opposed to the buy-in of the tournament,” he said after winning the Main Event.
When you have $8.15 million to your name, you can play wherever you want.