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October 30, 2014

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Phil Ivey claims 10th WSOP bracelet, tied for second all-time

Ivey joins company of Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan

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Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Phil Ivey takes part in the $111,111 One Drop High Rollers No-Limit Hold’em event during the World Series of Poker on Wednesday, June 26, 2013, at the Rio.

The list is down to one.

Only one player now has more World Series of Poker bracelets than Phil Ivey, whom many consider the best gambler in the world, after the 38-year-old Las Vegas resident won his 10th early Saturday morning at the Rio.

Ivey prevailed in the $1,500 buy-in Eight Game Mix tournament to win $167,332. It’s his first bracelet in Las Vegas since 2010 when he won a H.O.R.S.E event.

Ivey’s most recent victory before Saturday came in a mixed-game event during the Asia-Pacific series in April 2013. That means his last three bracelets have come in a mixed-game format.

It’s appropriate with a keen knowledge of every poker variant always regarded as one of Ivey’s biggest strengths. The six-figure score may not seem significant for a player who has racked up $21 million in tournament earnings, third all-time, but the victory is likely worth much more.

Ivey places side bets with other professionals on winning a bracelet every summer. A particularly well-circulated proposition at the 2014 WSOP was a wager offered by fellow pro Daniel Negreanu, who finished ninth in the Eight Game Mix for $9,014.

Negreanu solicited anyone a betting line even money to gamble against him or Ivey winning a bracelet at the Rio this year, and he apparently found several takers.

“If you owe me money, I’ll be at the Rio Sunday,” Negreanu tweeted after Ivey’s win. “Fun sweat all summer and my man got the job done.”

The only player with more WSOP gold than Ivey after his latest win is Phil Hellmuth, who holds a record 13 bracelets. Ivey is now tied for second for Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan.

Ivey came onto the scene decades later than all three right as field sizes were beginning to increase dramatically. His 10 bracelets might already be more impressive as anyone else’s count, and he’s not done yet.

Ivey may one day hold the lead.

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

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