On Wednesday, Team PokerStars Pro Jason Mercier was having what he deemed the worst summer ever. Less than 12 hours later, in the early hours of Thursday morning, things had turned around. That's because Mercier took down Event #32: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed for $633,357 and his third World Series of Poker gold bracelet.
"It feels great; I mean it feels good anytime you win a live poker tournament, especially when you win a ton of money and a gold bracelet," Mercier said after the win.
Day 3 of Event #32: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em 6-Handed – a tournament that originally attracted 550 runners and created a prize pool of $2,585,000 – saw 20 players return to action, more than a dozen of which had to hit the rail before the final table was reached. Among them were Noah Vaillancourt (19th - $20,059), Jennifer Tilly (14th - $25,022), Tuan Le (12th - $32,028), Jorryt van Hoof (9th - $42,032), and Jose "Nacho" Barbero (7th - $56,637).
"The whole final table was tough," Mercier reflected. "When you're looking at seventh place for $56K and first is $633K, you really don't want to mess up. One big hand and you could be out. Three-handed was a really tough battle. I was fortunate enough to win a few key pots. It was definitely a tough final table. Everyone was trying to win, and luckily it was me."
Final Table Results
|1||Jason Mercier||Davie, FL||$633,357|
|2||Simon Deadman||Nottingham, UK||$391,446|
|3||Mike Gorodinsky||St. Louis, MO||$246,867|
|4||Dario Sammartino||Nova Gorica, Italy||$163,604|
|5||Igor Dubinsky||Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine||$111,672|
|6||James Obst||Adelaide, Australia||$78,428|
The win couldn't have come at a better time for Mercier. As previously mentioned, he was having a rough summer – or as he called it "Brick City" – especially after losing a hefty chunk of change to Brian Hastings in a highly-publicized side bet.
"We have a bet on mutual-played events, which luckily he played this one," Mercier explained about another bet the two had made. "It's for most fantasy points, but it's much, much smaller [than the other bet]. Basically the big bet was I laid him 3.3-1 that he wouldn't win a bracelet. I didn't really have any side bets on myself this summer."
While his latest bracelet — his WSOP first no-limit hold'em win (his other wins came in the 2009 WSOP Event #5: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha for $237,462 and 2011 WSOP Event #35: $5,000 Six-Handed PLO for $619,575) — didn't earn him any bonus bet cash, it did give him the boost he'd been looking for.
"I was kind of down on myself," Mercier admitted. "I was getting beat up in cash, busting every tournament, this was the first tournament I made Day 2. It feels really good just to go deep, make the final table, and to win is just the cherry on the top."
As for his celebration plans, Mercier stated: "I was really hoping to play this $10K six-max, but apparently it's closed. I'm going to see what these guys want to do, maybe get a few drinks, maybe play some OFC, hang out, relax and get ready for tomorrow."
While Mercier is out celebrating, his name will enter the history books as a three-time bracelet winner, joining the likes of Barry Greenstein, Michael and Robert Mizrachi, Antonio Esfandiari, Vanessa Selbst, George Danzer, and David "Chip" Reese.
"Obviously I'm happy to be in an elite group of those who've won three [bracelets]," Mercier concluded.
Congratulations to Jason Mercier on becoming a three-time WSOP bracelet winner!
*Lead photo courtesy of WSOP.com