Friday, July 2, 2010 11:15 PM Local Time
The 53rd event of the 2010 World Series of Poker, the $1,500 Limit Shootout tournament, has come to an end with Brendan Taylor emerging victorious. Three days ago the tournament started with 548 competitors who played down to 64. From there, the field was whittled down to just eight.
Anticipation for the final table was centered on two individuals, Jonathan Little and Terrence Chan. Chan, who is considered one of the best limit players in the game, was the first to go. Little managed to do a little better by finishing third. No one could have predicted what was discovered next. It turned out the final two players, Taylor and Ben Yu, were in fact housemates here in Vegas. The rail was filled with their supporters who couldn't believe the pair was going to battle heads up for a gold bracelet.
Taylor started heads up with a commanding chip lead and the first hand between the two was symbolic that the title was meant for Taylor. In that hand, the board had three aces and Taylor put out a bet. Yu called and was crippled when Taylor showed the fourth ace. It was just a few hands later that Taylor finished the job and captured his first WSOP gold bracelet along with the $184,950 first place prize.
Congratulations to Brendan Taylor, Event #53 Champion!
Friday, July 2, 2010 11:05 PM Local Time
At the end, it seemed only fitting that on the first hand that Ben Yu got it in good heads-up, he would lose the pot. After a few raises, Yu was all in pre-flop for 235,000. Brendan Taylor called and tabled , a hand behind Yu's . This time, however, it was Taylor who paired on the flop, . Yu needed a nine or runners to stay alive, but the turn and river were both fours, and , to send Yu crashing out of the tournament in second place. He'll leave with $114,484. No doubt he's disappointed he didn't win, but he can take some measure of happiness from the fact that roommate Brendan Taylor was the winner.
Friday, July 2, 2010 11:01 PM Local Time
There was not as much drama for Ben Yu's second double-up. He got it all in pre-flop with against Brendan Taylor's . Yu paired nines on the flop, , then survived a sweat when the turn came and river blanked . Yu now has 280,000.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:59 PM Local Time
There was about 550,000 in the pot with a board when Brendan Taylor bet. Yu made the call, leaving himself only 60,000, and mucked when he saw Taylor's .
The very next hand, Yu was all in in the dark and Taylor called in the dark.
The flop was no help to Yu when it came . The on the turn gave Yu some chop outs but it was the on the river that gave him a small double up.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:56 PM Local Time
The second heads-up pot went much like the first -- with a showdown going to Brendan Taylor. Taylor opened with a raise pre-flop that Ben Yu called. Yu checked and called one bet on a board of . Yu called to the turn, which both players checked. When the river fell and Yu checked again, Taylor tried a bet. Yu called, but couldn't beat Taylor's pair of queens, .
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:54 PM Local Time
The first hand of heads up play saw a board of . Brendan Taylor checked and Ben Yu bet. Taylor raised and Yu made the call.
"Nuts," Taylor said as he turned over . Yu was left with 650,000 after the hand.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:47 PM Local Time
Brendan Taylor and Ben Yu are the final two players left in the tournament. We've just learned that there is a deeper connection between the two. They are in fact housemates here in Las Vegas.
The rail is filled with their supporters who clearly can't believe the two both made it to the end. There have been numerous chest bumps and the energy level is high. In the meantime, and perhaps to discuss their good fortune, the remaining two players have taken an impromptu break.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:46 PM Local Time
That's the ballgame for Jonathan Little. After doubling up a number of times, he was in prime position for another double-up, all in pre-flop with against Brendan Taylor's . The flop, however, paired Taylor, . That left Little looking for an ace he never found, turn and river. Little will leave with $73,218 in prize money.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:44 PM Local Time
Jonathan Little was all in for 115,000 before the flop. His was up against Brendan Taylor's . There was no luck for Taylor this time around as the board rolled out to double up Little -- again.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:42 PM Local Time
Joseph McGowan raised under the gun and Brendan Taylor reraised from the button. McGowan called and the flop came .
McGowan checked and Taylor bet. McGowan raised and Taylor simply called. McGowan then bet when the hit the turn. Taylor raised and McGowan called all in.
McGowan was looking for an ace or six on the river but it was not meant to be. The dealer put up the and McGowan was eliminated from the tournament in fourth place and will take home $48,546.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:31 PM Local Time
Jonathan Little did everything right. When Ben Yu opened with a raise and Brendan Taylor three-bet the small blind, Little put in the fourth bet. Both Yu and Taylor called to a flop of . Taylor checked to Little, who fired out a bet. Only Yu called.
On the turn , Little checked, then managed to put in a raise against Yu after Yu bet. Yu tanked for about a minute before calling. The river fell , drawing one last bet from Little. Yu called. Little turned over , pocket aces, which were no good against Yu's rivered two pair, . Yu collected a huge pot, once again dropping Little to the land of the short-stacked.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:28 PM Local Time
Jonathan Little raised under the gun and Brendan Taylor called from the big blind. Both players checked the flop and the turn came the . Taylor bet and Little called.
Taylor then bet the on the river and Little called. Taylor showed but was behind Little's . Little added 240,000 to his stack.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:24 PM Local Time
Jonathan Little was under the gun and raised. Action folded and Taylor reraised from the big blind. Little raised all in for a total of 180,000 and Taylor made the call.
Taylor was looking for a king to eliminate Little but couldn't catch as the board ran out . Little doubled to 400,000 while Taylor is still the chip leader with 1.87 million.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:21 PM Local Time
Jonathan Little opened from the small blind with a raise that was called by Ben Yu. Little continued on a paired flop, . Yu, undeterred, made the call to see a third diamond hit the turn, . Little checked and called a bet from Yu. The river was a blank, . Again Little checked and again Yu bet. Little called but couldn't beat the straight, , that Yu turned over.
Little is now the littlest of stacks at the table.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:16 PM Local Time
Ben Yu raised under the gun to 80,000 and Jonathan Little reraised to 120,000 from the big blind. Yu raised to 160,000 and Little repopped it to put Yu all in.
The board ran out and Yu doubled to 380,000.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:13 PM Local Time
With the limits as big as they are, huge swings are now quite common. Someone is going to wind up without a chair when the music stops very, very soon.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:12 PM Local Time
Ben Yu, desperately short-stacked, raised all in from the big blind after Brendan Taylor opened the button with a raise. Taylor called with , two live cards against Yu's . But it was Yu who stayed best on a board of , making a ten-high straight to drag the pot.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:09 PM Local Time
Brendan Taylor raised the small blind and was called by Jonathan Little from the big blind. Taylor fired again on an all-diamond flop, with Little calling behind. Both players checked when the board paired kings, . Taylor checked again on the river, prompting Little to bet. Taylor called, but couldn't beat for aces and kings.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:08 PM Local Time
Ben Yu raised and Joe McGowan reraised preflop. Yu called and the turn came down . McGowan bet and Yu called. McGowan then bet his last 50,000 in the dark and the came on the turn.
Yu called and showed . Unfortunately for him, he was drawing dead against the of McGowan. Yu was left with just 90,000 while McGowan doubled to around 500,000.
Friday, July 2, 2010 10:03 PM Local Time
Brendan Taylor opened from under the gun (also the cutoff, now that we're four-handed) and was called by big blind Joseph McGowan. On a flop of , McGowan check-raised Taylor's continuation bet. Taylor called to the turn, where he got his own raise into the pot after McGowan led out. McGowan called to see the hit the river. McGowan checked it, then tanked for about a full minute before folding to Taylor's river bet.