Brian Hastings Wins His Second WSOP Gold Bracelet
High-Stakes Cash Game Pro Triumphs in Seven-Card Stud Championship, Pockets $239,518
Scott Clements Denied a Third Gold Bracelet, Finishes as Runner Up
MEET THE LATEST WSOP GOLD BRACELET CHAMPION
Name: Brian Hastings
Birthplace: Luzerne County, PA (USA)
Current Residence: Hanover Township, PA (USA)
Marital Status: Single
Profession: Professional Poker Player
Number of WSOP Cashes: 14
Number of WSOP Final Table Appearances: 7
Number of WSOP Gold Bracelet Victories: 2
Best Previous WSOP Finish: 1st (2012)
Total WSOP Earnings: $1,139,276
Personal Facts: Before he played live tournaments, Hastings was already one of the world’s top online poker players with millions in earnings
[Note: All statistics above include the results of this tournament]
Brian Hastings continues to add both to his reputation and legacy.
The high-stakes cash game player from Hanover Township, PA won the 2015 Seven-Card Stud World Championship, widely-recognized as such because it’s the highest buy-in tournament of this form of poker held each year. Not coincidentally, Seven-Card Stud has been a staple of home games in the northeastern United States, where Hastings first developed his poker roots, for many decades.
Hastings earned his second career gold bracelet, following his first victory which was in the Heads-Up No-Limit Hold’em Championship, in 2012. It was his 14th time to cash, and rocketed him to more than $1.1 million in WSOP earnings. That said, this wasn’t even close to Hasting’s biggest win in poker.
Hastings initially surfaced on the poker scene as an online nearly ten years ago, playing the world’s best and most feared players for stakes so high, they were (and are) sometimes called “nosebleed.” He reportedly once won $4 million in a single session. However, when online poker was dealt a serious setback in 2009, Hastings began playing more in live games, and tournaments. He seems to have made the adjustment, quite comfortably, indeed.
This year’s $10,000 buy-in Seven-Card Stud event drew only 91 players, but it was quite a stacked field. Hastings topped Scott Clements in heads-up play, quite a feat on its own given his pedigree in WSOP events. Clements, a two-time gold bracelet winner, finished 2nd for the fourth time in his career. Despite his obvious talents, Clements was simply out-chipped throughout play and couldn’t overcome the multiple disadvantages, a common theme at his conquered final table, which included Dan Kelly (3rd) going for his third career gold bracelet, and Max Pescatori (8th) aiming not just for a fourth WSOP title, but his second gold bracelet in 2015. None were a match for Hastings, who put on a poker clinic during much of the tournament.
“This tournament is more meaningful because it’s what a lot of the older, more established players played for many years,” Hastings said in a post-tournament interview. “Anytime you win, it’s feels good.”
Hastings, who is quite active in the poker community and known for more than just as player, is also a noted strategist and teacher. Given his second WSOP victory and yet another accomplishment in the game, it’s clear that Brian Hastings can be projected to win more and possibly even challenge some records, should he choose to pursue that option.
“I felt really good coming into this year’s series,” he said. I came in with some high expectations. I thought I was in a very good place, with my girlfriend here with me and really on top of my A-game.”
When pressed to elaborate on a reported huge bonus in the form of a bracelet side bet made with other poker players, Hastings confirmed that he’d made some substantial wagers and now will have the chance to collect.
“It’s about twice what the top prize money was for this event,” Hastings confessed. “But I won’t say who it was with.”
No doubt, betting against Brian Hastings doesn’t seem like a very wise decision. When asked about his future goals, he was on message and went straight to the point.
“The $50K Poker Players Championship – that’s my next goal,” Hastings said matter-of-factly.
With Hastings listed atop the final results, the official order of finish was as follows:
Second Place: Scott Clements, from Mount Vernon, WA, made his second final table appearance of this series, after coming in 4th in the $10K Omaha High-Low Split event, which ended days earlier. This marks his 40th career cash and added to what’s now $2.6 in WSOP earnings. Clements is widely acknowledged as a master of mixed games, but this was his first Seven-Card Stud in-the-money finish at the WSOP. $148,001 was the consolation prize.
Third Place: Dan Kelly, from Potomac, MD, hoped to win a third gold bracelet, following wins in 2010 and 2014. However, he had to settle for 3rd place, which paid $92,691.
Fourth Place: Chris George, from Croton-on-Hudson, NY has a stellar tournament record that few people know about. Consider his last six cashes in WSOP events (all since 2013) – 2nd, 4th, 6th, 6th, 3rd, and now 4th.
Fifth Place: Oxana Cummings, a Russian-born poker player now living in Weston, MA came in 5th. She was the only female who finished in the money in this tournament.
Sixth Place: Harley Thrower, from Georgia, cashed for the third time this year at the WSOP. This marked his first time to make a final table.
Seventh Place: Russian poker player Mikhail Semin, from Moscow, enjoyed the highest finish of his career at the WSOP, by finishing in 7th place.
Eighth Place: Max Pescatori, originally from Milan and the top-earning and winning Italian poker player of all time, edged into the final table as the 8th-place finisher. He busted out early, denied a chance to win what could have been his 4th career bracelet.
OTHER IN-THE-MONEY FINISHERS:
Other notable players who cashed included 2-time winner Rep Porter (10th), 5-time winner David Chiu (11th), and 1-time winner Cory Zeidman (13th).
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