He is widely recognized as one of the best tournament poker players in the world, having won a record 15 WSOP bracelets over the course of his career.
Hellmuth is known for his non-stop complaining about bad beats or bad players, earning him the nickname 'The Poker Brat.'
Hellmuth was born on July 16, 1964 in Madison, Wisconsin and attended his hometown college of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His college career was cut short though, with Phil dropping out to focus solely on poker after building up a successful bankroll of around $20,000 from playing while in school.
1989 WSOP Main Event
After cashing twice at the 1988 WSOP, the following year, Hellmuth captured the WSOP Main Event title, defeating Johnny Chan heads-up and denying Chan an unprecedented third title in a row.
Aged just 24, Hellmuth also broke the record for youngest Main Event champion, a record previously set by Stu Ungar in 1980.
Phil Hellmuth and the WSOP
Hellmuth had to wait until 1992 to get his second WSOP bracelet, before winning three in 1993. What's more, these three bracelets came in consecutive events on three consecutive days.
Another bracelet followed in 1997, as well as another deep run in the Main Event, finishing 21st. In 2001, Hellmuth won his seventh WSOP bracelet and narrowly missed out on an eighth after a runner-up finish to Scotty Nguyen in the $5,000 Limit Omaha Hi-Lo. He also finished fifth in the WSOP Main Event, the year that Carlos Mortensen was crowned world champion.
Hellmuth won two Hold'em bracelets in 2003, one Limit and one No-Limit, adding another bracelet in 2006, becoming the third player to win 10 bracelets after Johnny Chan and Doyle Brunson (Phil Ivey would add his tenth eight years later)
He would earn his biggest WSOP payday so far in 2007, winning $637,254 in a $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em event.
At this point, all 11 of his bracelets had come in Hold'em events, but in 2012 he won the $2,500 Seven Card Razz for his first non-Hold'em bracelet. This bracelet also meant that he had now won bracelets in four separate decades (1980s-2010s), a feat matched by only Jay Heimowitz and Billy Baxter)
It was this year he also scored the biggest cash of his career, finishing fourth in the inaugural $1,000,000 Big One for One Drop, earning a cool $2.6 million.
2012 WSOP Europe Main Event
Later that same year, Hellmuth travelled to Cannes, France for the sixth World Series of Poker Europe (WSOPE). He made it to the final table of the €10,450 Main Event as chip leader, and eventually defeated Sergii Baranov heads-up to win his 13th bracelet and €1,022,376.
A 15th WSOP Bracelet
Phil Hellmuth WSOP Bracelets
|1989||Event #14: $10,000 NLHE WSOP Main Event||$755,000|
|1992||Event #8: $5,000 Limit Hold'em||$188,000|
|1993||Event #7: $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em||$173,000|
|1993||Event #8: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em||$161,400|
|1997||Event #15: $3,000 Pot-Limit Hold'em||$204,000|
|2001||Event #5: $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em||$316,550|
|2003||Event #12: $2,500 Limit Hold'em||$171,400|
|2003||Event #32: $3,000 No-Limit Hold'em||$410,860|
|2006||Event #34: $1,000 No-Limit Hold'em (Rebuy)||$631,863|
|2007||Event #15: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em||$637,254|
|2012||Event #18: $2,500 Razz||$182,793|
|2012 (E)||Event #7: €10,540 NLHE WSOPE Main Event||€1,022,376|
|2015||Event #17: $10,000 Razz Championship||$271,105|
|2018||Event #71: $5,000 NLHE||$485,082|
High Stakes Feud
In 2020, Hellmuth took on Antonio Esfandiari in the very first High Stakes Duel. Over three rounds, Hellmuth complete a hat-trick of victories, taking home $400,000.
Phil Hellmuth Top Five Poker Cashes
|July 2012||WSOP Big One for One Drop||$1,000,000||4th||$2,645,333|
|May 2016||Super High Roller Bowl||$300,000||4th||$1,600,000|
|September 2012||WSOP Europe Main Event||€10,450||€1,022,376|
|July 2011||WSOP Poker Players Championship||$50,000||2nd||$1,063,034|
|May 1989||WSOP Main Event||$10,000||1st||$755,000|
Courtesy of The Hendon Mob. Last Updated June 2021
WSOP Main Event Winners 1980-89
|1989||178||Phil Hellmuth||United States||$755,000|
|1988||167||Johnny Chan||United States||$700,000|
|1987||152||Johnny Chan||United States||$625,000|
|1986||141||Berry Johnston||United States||$570,000|
|1985||140||Bill Smith||United States||$700,000|
|1984||132||Jack Keller||United States||$660,000|
|1983||108||Tom McEvoy||United States||$540,000|
|1982||104||Jack Straus||United States||$520,000|
|1981||75||Stu Ungar||United States||$375,000|
|1980||73||Stu Ungar||United States||$385,000|