Poker Players Who Have Defended Their WSOP Bracelet
Table Of Contents
Dan "Jungleman" Cates made World Series of Poker history in the wee hours of the morning after achieving back-to-back wins in one of poker's most prestigious events, the $50,000 buy-in Poker Players Championship (PPC) for $1,449,103.
Cates is the first player ever to pull off the feat and his accomplishment will no doubt stand the test of time. It's hard to win one WSOP event, let alone defending your title the following year. However, it isn't impossible, as a select few players have been able to do just that, with Cates being the latest inductee into the club.
So, PokerNews has looked at some of the elite players who have defended their WSOP bracelets. An honourable mention goes to Bill Boyd who won the $10,000 No-Limit Five Card Stud three years in a row from 1972 to 1974. However, in 1973 he was the only entrant, so for this reason, he didn't make our official list.
Adam Friedman pulled off an unmatched milestone at the 2021 WSOP by winning the $10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship for a third straight year, while simultaneously denying Phil Hellmuth his 17th WSOP bracelet.
Friedman beat the 'Poker Brat' at heads-up play to be the last player standing from an initial 93 entries. His trio of triumphs netted him $854,042 which is a very nice return from his $30,000 in entry fees.
Unfortunately, the three-peater could not make four years in a row this time around, and surprisingly busted on Day 1 of the tournament. Ben Diebold took the crown at this year's series after he despatched Mike Gorodinsky following a marathon of a heads-up duel.
The 2022 WSOP hasn't been all bad for Friedman though, he picked up his fifth WSOP bracelet and another championship win after taking down Event #22: $10,000 Seven Card Stud Championship for $248,254
|2018||$10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship||111||Adam Friedman||$293,275|
|2019||$10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship||122||Adam Friedman||$312,417|
|2021||$10,000 Dealers Choice 6-Handed Championship||93||Adam Friedman||$248,350|
Johnny Moss, Doyle Brunson, Stu Ungar & Johnny Chan
Remarkably, four players have won consecutive WSOP Main Event's however the achievement hasn't been repeated since 1988. In the quartet are Johnny Moss (1970, 1971), Doyle Brunson (1976, 1977), Stu Ungar (1980, 1981) and Johnny Chan (1987, 1988).
Johnny Moss won the inaugural WSOP Main Event, however, the series was a far cry away from what it is today. For the first WSOP, seven poker pros played battled in the cash game streets and then voted on a champion. Amusingly, each player voted for themselves so WSOP founder Benny Binnion asked them to vote for the second-best player and from that, Moss was chosen.
There was no cash prize in 1970 but Moss took home a silver cup as a trophy as bracelets had not been incorporated.
In 1971, the Main Event featured it's first buy-in and cash prize. Six players paid the $5,000 entry fee (>$30,000 in 2022) and Moss was the last player standing to become the first two-time WSOP Main Event champion.
Brunson, Ungar and Chan were the next players to win back-to-back Main Events, with Chan securing the biggest first-place payday ($700,000).
|1970||WSOP Main Event||7||Johnny Moss||-|
|1971||$5,000 WSOP Main Event||6||Johnny Moss||$30,000|
|1976||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||22||Doyle Brunson||$220,000|
|1977||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||34||Doyle Brunson||$340,000|
|1980||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||73||Stu Ungar||$385,000|
|1981||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||75||Stu Ungar||$375,000|
|1987||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||152||Johnny Chan||$625,000|
|1988||$10,000 WSOP Main Event||167||Johnny Chan||$700,000|
No WSOP list could be complete without mentioning Hellmuth and the all-time leading bracelet winner is a part of the exclusive list of players who have been able to defend their bracelet.
In 1992, Hellmuth topped an 88-entry field in the $5,000 Limit Hold'em event for his second WSOP bracelet and did the same the following year for his fifth.
|1992||$5,000 Limit Hold'em||88||Phil Hellmuth||$188,000|
|1993||$5,000 Limit Hold'em||63||Phil Hellmuth||$138,000|
James Moore is another player who has successfully retained their crown. Moore bested the $1,000 Super Seniors field in 2016 and 2017, collecting nearly $500,000.
Moore nearly picked up his third WSOP bracelet in 2020, but this time it was on the virtual felt. He finished as the runner-up in the 2020 WSOP Online Senior's event, which was won by Jonathan Lessin.
|2016||$1,000 Super Seniors||1,476||James Moore||$230,626|
|2017||$1,000 Super Seniors||1,720||James Moore||$259,230|
Gary 'Bones' Berland
Gary 'Bones' Berland is the only player to win the same event twice on two occasions. In 1977 and 1978, he was the winner of the series' Razz events. The buy-in was upped to $1,000 for '78 after originally being a $500 entry fee.
Berland also won another bracelet in 1978, finishing first in the $500 Limit Seven Card Stud tournament. He went back-to-back for a second time in 1979 to claim his largest payout of $24,000 and fourth WSOP bracelet.
|1977||$500 Limit Razz||21||Gary 'Bones' Berland||$6,300|
|1978||$1,000 Limit Razz||32||Gary 'Bones' Berland||$19,200|
|1978||$500 Limit Seven Card Stud||57||Gary 'Bones' Berland||$17,100|
|1979||$500 Limit Seven Card Stud||80||Gary 'Bones' Berland||$24,000|
Last on the list is Lakewood Louie. He cashed in four WSOP tournaments and went on to win all four events. He picked up two bracelets in Limit Draw High events and also won one in WSOP Razz and Ace to Five Draw tournaments.
Interestingly, he was also (allegedly) the first-ever person to table a Royal Flush at the WSOP and did so in the 1979 Main Event.
|1978||$5,000 Limit Draw High||7||Lakewood Louie||$21,000|
|1979||$2,000 Limit Draw High||19||Lakewood Louie||$24,000|
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Calum has been a part of the PokerNews team since September 2021 after working in the UK energy sector. He played his first hand of poker in 2017 and immediately fell in love with the game. Calum's proudest poker achievement is winning the only tournament he has ever played in Las Vegas, the prestigious $60 Flamingo evening event.
In this Series
- 1 Officials Offer First Look at 2022 WSOP; Answer Several Lingering Questions
- 2 Bally's & Paris: Your Guide to the New Home of the World Series of Poker (WSOP)
- 3 Negreanu, Deeb (as Expected) Highest Bids in $25k WSOP Fantasy Draft
- 4 WSOP Transportation Guide: Riding the Las Vegas Strip Monorail
- 5 Let the Games Begin: 2022 WSOP is Officially Underway
- 6 Phil Hellmuth Misses 2022 WSOP Opener After Bout of Traveler's Diarrhea
- 7 Kenney, Schindler & Imsirovic Arrive at 2022 WSOP Despite Recent Cheating Allegations
- 8 Phil Ivey is Back! Poker G.O.A.T. Cashes First 2022 WSOP Event
- 9 Baltimore Raven Calais Campbell at WSOP: "We Have Super Bowl Potential"
- 10 2022 WSOP Featured Females: Katie Kopp Becomes Bally's First-Ever Bracelet Winner
- 11 WSOP Player of the Year Race One Week In: Defending Champ Arieh Off and Running
- 12 ClubGG Offers Bubble Protection For Eight 2022 WSOP Events
- 13 Doyle Brunson Skipping 2022 WSOP Due to COVID-19 Concerns
- 14 Retired NBA Star Paul Pierce Allegedly Won't Pay His Poker Debts
- 15 Scott Seiver Pays $43k to Enter $1k WSOP Event, Fails to Cash
- 16 2022 WSOP Featured Females: Lara Eisenberg Talks Poker's Impact on Dementia
- 17 2022 WSOP Hands of the Week: Depaulo vs. Hellmuth, a Pure One Outer & a Royal Flush
- 18 Reigning World Champ Koray Aldemir Quietly Crushing it at 2022 WSOP
- 19 2022 WSOP Player of the Week 2: Jeremy Ausmus Wins Third Bracelet in 9 Months
- 20 Hellmuth Controversy at WSOP: Poker Brat's Chips Swiped on Break
- 21 Security Mistakenly Tries to Kick Out Neymar Jr. After He Cashes First WSOP Event
- 22 Breaking News: Phil Ivey Closing in on Elusive 11th WSOP Bracelet Tonight
- 23 Doyle Brunson Becomes a WPT Ambassador, Might Play WSOP Main Event
- 24 World Series of Daniel's? Zack, Weinman (But Not Negreanu) Lead POY Race
- 25 WSOP $250,000 Super High Roller Kicks Off; Ivey, Negreanu and Kenney All Enter
- 26 Ali Imsirovic Busts WSOP $250K Super High Roller on Brutal Cooler
- 27 Cruising in the $250k, Is 2022 One of Phil Ivey's Best WSOP's Ever?
- 28 Runner-Runner Bad Beat Tilts Negreanu; Poker Star Out of WSOP $250k
- 29 Navy Vet Reps Military Charity During WSOP Salute to Warriors Event
- 30 2022 WSOP Featured Females: Meet Wendeen Eolis, 1st Woman to Ever Cash Main Event
- 31 Dan Zack Still Leads WSOP POY Race; Ivey, Deeb within Striking Distance
- 32 888poker Pro Ian Simpson Gears Up for 2022 WSOP Main Event
- 33 Poker Players Who Have Defended Their WSOP Bracelet
- 34 How to Make Day 2 of the Million Dollar Bounty
- 35 Poker Player Wins WSOP Main Event Satty in His Sleep...Literally
- 36 Josh Arieh Flushed Out of WSOP Main Event Early; Four Past Champs in Day 1a
- 37 2022 WSOP Hands of the Week: Yuvee Loses $50K to Pair of Deuces; Ivey Hits Ace from Space
- 38 BREAKING: Phil Hellmuth at 2022 WSOP $3,000 NLH Final Table, Chasing 17th Bracelet
- 39 Will the 2022 WSOP Main Event Smash the Attendance Record?
- 40 Barstool Sports' Cracking Aces Podcast Hosts Crush it on Main Event Day 1
- 41 WSOP Main Event Railbird Pays Back Daniel Negreanu Four-Year "Debt"
- 42 Matt Glantz Finds the $1 Million WSOP Bounty
- 43 BREAKING: WSOP Main Event Day 2 Schedule Altered
- 44 Aces Bust Kings 15 Minutes into Day 1b of WSOP Main Event
- 45 The Muck: Ike Haxton Takes on Barstool Sports' Poker Invasion
- 46 2022 WSOP Player of the Week 5: Jessica Teusl Wins First Bracelet at First WSOP
- 47 2022 WSOP Main Event Draws Massive Field, Almost Breaks All-Time Record
- 48 Phil Hellmuth's World Series of Poker Entrance Met w/ a Chorus of Boos
- 49 Robert Lipkin is the 2022 WSOP Main Event Bubble
- 50 SO SICK! Kings vs. Kings Cooler Busts 888poker's Sam Abernathy from the WSOP Main Event
- 51 Koray Aldemir: Back-to-Back WSOP Main Event Runs "A Privilege"
- 52 Brutal River! Aces, Queens, & Jacks All In Preflop in WSOP Main Event
- 53 Former World Champ Tom McEvoy Shares his Poker Samadhi Wisdom
- 54 Did Alejandro Lococo Pull Off Best WSOP Main Event Bluff Since Moneymaker?
- 55 The Muck: Did Mike Matusow Really Have a Blow Up in the WSOP Main Event?
- 56 Dan Zack Claims 2022 WSOP Player of the Year Honors
- 57 How Much Money Players at 2022 WSOP Main Event Final Table Really Made
- 58 Espen Jorstad Wins 2022 World Series of Poker Main Event for $10,000,000
- 59 Las Vegas Active Shooter Rumors Spark Panic; WSOP Impacted, Negreanu Injured
- 60 Quads Dooms Asher Conniff at WSOP Main Event Final Table
- 61 Aces Cracked! Souki Busts from WSOP Main Event Final Table
- 62 Espen Jorstad Holds Commanding Lead in Pursuit of WSOP Main Event Title
- 63 Not Su's Day: From Chip Leader to Out in 9th Place
- 64 A Look at All the 2022 WSOP Online Michigan Bracelet Winners
- 65 Five Memorable Hands from the 2021 WSOP Main Event Final Table
- 66 Where Are They Now: Ron “The Carolina Express” Stanley Battled Stu Ungar at 1997 WSOP
- 67 WATCH: One of the Best Folds in WSOP Main Event History?
- 68 Adrian Attenborough Just Made Two of the Gutsiest Plays of the 2022 WSOP
- 69 Can Karim Rebei Click his Way to a WSOP Main Event Title?
- 70 Cool, Calm & Collected Efthymia Litsou is WSOP Main Event's Last Woman Standing
- 71 2022 WSOP Hands of the Week: Quads, Quads, Quads, Quads!
- 72 Brutal River! Aces, Queens, & Jacks All In Preflop in WSOP Main Event
- 73 Daniel Negreanu Wraps 2022 World Series of Poker Down $1.1 Million
- 74 How the 2022 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Will Be Remembered
- 75 PN Podcast: 2022 WSOP Main Event Final Thoughts; Interviews w/ Main Event Final Three