John Hennigan is no stranger to World Series of Poker success. By winning Event #27: $10,000 H.O.R.S.E. Championship, Hennigan is just the 25th player to win five bracelets. His WSOP success dates back to 2002 when he won his first bracelet, and 16 years later Hennigan is still at the top of his game.
Still, despite his even-keeled nature and laid-back demeanor at the table, Hennigan still has to combat what many poker players have to on a consistent basis.
"It was a high-pressure final table. Iraj (Parvizi) yesterday was really putting everybody on tilt, me especially. The only guy I thought that held it together was David Baker. He played a great tournament in my opinion. It was a good learning experience for me because I was so tilted and kind of fell apart and got saved by the deck really. I had some very lucky situations when I was short, and it's just a really nice win."
Final Table Results
|1||John Hennigan||United States||$414,692|
|2||David "Bakes" Baker||United States||$256,297|
|3||Lee Salem||United States||$179,216|
|4||Iraj Parvizi||United Kingdom||$127,724|
|5||Randy Ohel||United States||$92,808|
|7||Daniel Zack||United States||$52,016|
|8||Michael Noori||United States||$40,155|
Day 1 attracted a field of 157 entries and Shaun Deeb led the field into Day 2, where nine more players jumped into the action to create a field of 166 entries and a prize pool of $1,560,400. Only the top 25 spots were paid and Mike Gorodinsky was the sole late entrant to make a profit after finishing in 19th place for $15,229.
Among the big names to fall before the money bubble on Day 2 were Daniel Negreanu, David "ODB" Baker, Jeff Lisandro, Chris Ferguson, start-of-day chip leader Shaun Deeb, Benny Glaser, John Monnette, and 2016 champion Jason Mercier.
Scott Cole ended up as the bubble boy after calling all in on sixth in Razz only to find himself drawing dead. Before bagging and tagging, notables such as Jean-Robert Bellande (26th - $15,229), Andrew Barber (25th - $15,229), Stuart Rutter (21st - $15,229) and Joey Couden (18th - $15,229) departed to see just 16 players in contention for Day 3.
The last scheduled day of the event began with a bang over on the feature table as Katherine Fleck was the first to depart and the next four players to bust all ran out of chips on the PokerGO live stream table. This included Jean Gaspard (15th - $17,677), Illya Trincher (14th - $20,993), Anthony Zinno (13th - $20,993), and Robert Mizrachi (12th - $24,498). Carol Fuchs ended up in 11th place and the field was reduced to the official final table after Jake Schwartz (10th - $25,498) and Robert Campbell (9th - $31,656) departed.
Final Table Action
Iraj Parvizi was the chip leader heading into the final eight while Michael Noori had fewer than one big bet left. Noori chopped to chip up and busted shortly after in a battle of the blinds with Daniel Zack despite flopping top pair, as Zack got there with a runner-runner wheel in Omaha Hi-Lo. Almost five hours later, it was Zack that bowed out next and Albert Daher ran out of chips soon after.
Parvizi was all smiles at the final table and pointed out several times that he was an amateur facing the top pros. The Brit shifted gears with an all-out attack style, even playing several hands in the dark, and that changed the stack sizes of all remaining finalists drastically. Randy Ohel was left short after being scooped by Parvizi and his low draw in Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo bricked off, while Hennigan made a straight and a low to end Ohel's run in fifth place.
The roller coaster ride of Parvizi came to an end after another two and a half hours of frantic action in fourth place and 1998 WSOP Main Event fifth-place finisher Lee Salem went from chip leader to out in third place in the penultimate level of the night. Hennigan and Baker went back and forth in the final level of the night without being able to wrap it up, opting to return fresh the next day in order to determine a champion.
It took another full level of play, one where Baker doubled up several times to keep his shorter stack afloat. In the end, however, Hennigan took it down. His path to victory was tumultuous, though, and he continued to praise Baker for how he handled Parvizi's tilting play.
"He (Parvizi) is getting in these big pots with not very good hands, and we're all trying to play tight and last, and now he's busting people out or killing their stack with kind of unorthodox, to say the least, plays. The tilt was born there and I was not immune to it. I can't say enough about how well David Baker held up under that. He really played Iraj well and the rest of us didn't."
With seven players left, Hennigan was the short stack with just 3% of the chips in play. However, a crucial pot where he essentially doubled up was the turning point.
"The key moment in the day (yesterday)...I think I had the king-queen of hearts. I was very short on chips and it was raised and reraised. I just decided that this was a good chance to gamble and win a nice pot to put me back in the tournament. Flop nothing, and it came heart heart and it really put me back in the game. I never really got in bad shape after that."
Hennigan was appreciative of capturing bracelet number five, but won't let it get to his head too much.
"We'll see what happens. I'm not too preoccupied with it, but five does feel better than four."