Ryan Riess, a 23-year old poker pro and Michigan State graduate defeated Jay Farber, a Las Vegas VIP club promoter last night to win the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event title and $8,361,570 in first place prize money along with a championship bracelet said to be worth in the area of $1 million. Farber still gets to walk away with a life changing $5,174,357.
Riess entered the heads up matchup at final table play with a slight chip deficit to Farber, holding just under 87 million to Farber’s 105 million. After over an hour of play and a 58.5 million big pot where Riess won with pocket Jacks, he gained a 2 to 1 chip advantage over Farber.
On the final hand of the final table (Hand #261), with less than 10% of the total chips, Farber was all in with :Qs :5s against Riess’ :Ah :Kh. Following the :Jd :Td :4c flop, Farber was looking for a five to stay alive. His queen would now give Riess a Broadway straight, and that would’ve spelled the end. The turn was the :3c, leaving just one more card for Riess to dodge.
The :4d paired the board on the river and it was over for Farber. Riess’ rail surrounded the new 2013 Main Event Champion on the stage while chanting “Riess the beast!”.
“I want to thank my family and my friends, they’re the best friends in the world,” Riess told reporters after getting his hands on the bracelet.
“I just think I’m the best player in the world.”
Riess never lacked confidence entering the final table, telling ESPN’s cameras that he “expected to win” because he was the best player at the table.
Riess beat out a a field of 6,352 players in the $10,000 buy-in tournament over the summer, making the November Nine.
November nine finalists usually use the delay between July and November to practice in some other big tournaments and secure some extra sponsorship deals, cashing in on their newfound fame. Riess declined them all, opting instead to wear a Calvin Johnson NFL jersey at the final table.
Here are the 2013 WSOP Main Event final table results:
1st: Ryan Riess – USA – $8,361,570
2nd: Jay Farber – USA – $5,174,357
3rd: Amir Lehavot – Israel – $3,727,823
4th: Sylvain Loosli – France – $2,792,533
5th: JC Tran – USA – $2,106,893
6th: Marc-Etienne McLaughlin – Canada – $1,601,024
7th: Michiel Brummelhuis – Netherlands – $1,225,356
8th: David Benefield – USA – $944,650
9th: Mark Newhouse – USA – $733,224
Congratulations to the winners!