Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold'em

Event Info

Buy-in $500
Prize Pool $324,450
Players 721

Level Info

Level 22
Blinds 15,000 / 30,000
Ante 4,000
Event #1: $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold'em
Day 2 Completed

Hoai Pham Wins Event #1 $500 Casino Employees No-Limit Hold'em ($71,424)

Champion Hoai Pham
Champion Hoai Pham

Throughout Day 2 Hoai Pham remained focused and determined to do his best. With every decision he was deliberate and it didn't hurt that he picked up some big hands. Fittingly he ended the day with pocket aces.

At the same time he wasn't afraid to make big lay downs. He folded ace-king face up with just two tables left in a spot where he could have raced for the chip lead, opting to play it safe. His patience clearly paid looking at his first-place finish and new World Series of Poker bracelet.

Pham was born in Vietnam and is a dealer at the Village Club Poker Room in San Diego, California. He traveled to Las Vegas to try his luck on the other side of the felt and is proud to be the last player standing.

"This is magical," he told reporters after taking pictures. "I knew I could win."

Over seven hundred casino employees arrived at the Rio on Day 1 searching for a WSOP bracelet, but only one could be crowned. Hoai Pham bested the 721 player field and after two days of grueling action he is the champion of Event #1.

Pham will be presented his bracelet tomorrow at 2 p.m. in the Pavilion Room and, per his request, the Vietnamese National Anthem will be played. He also told our friend Nolan Dalla that he will be singing the lyrics aloud.

Congratulation to Hoai Pham for his first WSOP bracelet and a cool $71,424!

Tags: Hoai Pham

Arthur Vea Eliminated in Second Place ($44,079)

Artur Vea
Artur Vea

After less than a dozen hands played heads-up, Pham opened to $80,000 on the button. Arthur Vea called.

The flop was a scattered {7-Diamonds}{2-Clubs}{q-Hearts}. Vea checked and Pham went all in. Vea tanked for a moment before calling.

Vea: {4-Spades}{4-Clubs}
Pham: {a-Clubs}{a-Diamonds}

The {5-Diamonds} on the turn and the {6-Clubs} on the river could not save Vea, who was eliminated in second place.

Tags: Arthur VeaHoai Pham


Hand #164 - Hoain Pham


Hoai Pham raised 50,000 in the small blind and Chris Reider re-raised, putting himself all in preflop. Pham, who had less chips than Reider going into the hand, snap-called.

Pham: {k-Diamonds}{k-Clubs}
Reider: {7-Diamonds}{9-Diamonds}

The board came down {5-Diamonds}{7-Hearts}{2-Diamonds}{10-Hearts}{2-Hearts} and Pham's kings held, sending his chip count to 1,020,000.

Tags: Christopher ReiderHoai Pham

Hand #160 - Arhur Vea


Arthur Vea has built his stack up to 785,000. Sitting in the small blind, he called Chris Reider's button raise to 90,000. When Reider bet 90,000 into the {k-Clubs}{q-Spades}{9-Diamonds} flop, Vea went all in for 481,000, and Reider folded.

Tags: Arthur VeaChristopher Reider

Hand #148 - Hoai Pham


Hoai Pham's been keeping a relatively quiet presence as of late. In this hand he called from the cutoff and saw a flop with Arthur Vea in the small blind and Matthew Hollinger in the big blind.

On a flop of {6-Spades}{3-Diamonds}{8-Hearts}, Vea checked and Hollinger bet out 50,000. Pham re-raised to 150,000 and both blinds folded.

Tags: Arthur VeaHoai PhamMatthew Hollinger

Hand #144 - Matthew Hollinger


After doubling up Christopher Reider, Matthew Hollinger was left super short-stacked. Arthur Vea shoved in the small bling and Hollinger took a quick peek at his cards before calling.

Hollinger: {q-Hearts}{7-Clubs}
Vea: {q-Clubs}{9-Spades}

Hollinger didn't stay behind for long. The flop delivered {k-Hearts}{7-Diamonds}{j-Diamonds}, providing Hollinger with a pair of sevens. The turn {2-Hearts} and river {4-Diamonds} were no help to Vea.

Tags: Arthur VeaMatthew Hollinger