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The third day of the 2017 World Series of Poker has just wrapped up, and with it, Daniel Negreanu’s first chance at his seventh career WSOP bracelet at his first final table of the summer.

Brand New Event

The $10,000 Tag Team No-Limit Hold’em Championship made is a brand new event and made its debut at this year’s WSOP. For a first time event, it drew a respectable 102 entrants which created a prize pool of a little under $1 million.

The event, which is made up of teams of 2-4 players, is played like any other no-limit Hold’em tournament with a few differences. As the event name suggest, instead of every man for himself, the teams could tag in and out among the members whenever they see fit as they played with a shared stack. The only requirement is that each member of the team must play at least one round of blinds over the duration of the tournament, otherwise, the team would be disqualified. Another difference compared to normal no-limit Hold’em tournament is the lack of breaks. Instead, players will simply tag in a partner, so in essence, can have a break while they’re not in active play.

The Final Table

The official final table consisted of 9 teams, made up of 23 players, all vying for the $273,964 top price. After a few eliminations, day 2 of the event ended with the final six teams to head into day 3.

Negreanu made it to the final table of the $10,000 Tag Team No-Limit Hold’em Championship along with 3 of his team mates, Eric Wasserson, David Benyamine, and Mark Gregorich. Not only did his team have the most combined bracelets, thanks in large part to Negreanu’s 6 career bracelets, they also entered the final table as the chip leaders with nearly 1.5 million in chips.

The other teams at the final table were:

  • ➤ Anthony Ajlouny, David Fong, Mike McClain (932,000)
  • ➤ Liv Boeree, Igor Kurganov (929,000)
  • ➤ Ankush Mandavia, Joe Kuether (800,000)
  • ➤ Martin Jacobson, Mark Radoja (632,000)
  • ➤ Javier Gomez, Lander Lijo (287,000)

Falling Short Of The First Of Three “Bet” Bracelets

Of the final six teams, all eyes were on Team Negreanu as everyone were eager to see whether or not he could take home his 7th career bracelet, as well as the first of the three bracelet that he had betted with Ben Lamb for even money.

Negreanu played the entire final table for his team, which, according to the winning team, was usual across the board as teams changed in and out far less as they got deeper into the tournament. This made getting a read on players from the early stages of the game much more difficult as they changed in and out frequently.

On the last hand of the 40 hands played between the final 3 teams, Negreanu got its chips in the middle with top pair and a straight draw against Kurganov’s two pair and flush draw. Unfortunately, the river fell against Negreanu, and sent him and his team packing in third place for $119,753.

Heads-Up Battle

The last two standing were long-time power couple Liv Boeree and Igor Kuganov vs poker pros Ankush Mandavia and Joe Kuether. Both Kuganov and Mandavia played the entirety of the 90-hand match.

Mandavia headed in to the heads-up with a severe chip disadvantage, which saw Kuganov eventually taking advantage off and stealing the win.

The pair swapped the chip lead several times, but on Hand #268 of the final table, Kurganov rivered the nut Broadway straight while Mandavia made a king-high straight. The chips went in, and Kurganov and Boeree captured their first bracelets.

First-time Career Bracelet

The two high stakes poker pros have been dating for several years and have already built up a pretty impressive resume, but have been shy of the much eluded bracelet. Now, they can finally put that to rest and add that to their list of accomplishment, and to make it even sweeter, they achieved it as team.

“This is genuinely an event where I’m happier about the two bracelets that we win from it,” said Kurganov. “People always say that I want to win the bracelet, but here the ratio of bracelet to money is even better than usual.”

The power couple also co-founded a charity called Raising for Effective Giving (REG). They agreed that they would each donate half of their winnings in this event to their charity.

“The charity was basically our third and fourth player,” said Kurganov.

Final Table Results

PlacePlayerEarnings (Per Team
1Liv Boeree – Igor Kurganov$273,964
2Ankush Mandavia – Joe Kuether$169,323
3Daniel Negreanu – Eric Wasserson – David Benyamine – Mark Gregorich$119,753
4Anthony Ajlouny – David Fong – Mike McClain$86,237
5Javier Gomez – Lander Lijo$63,253
6Martin Jacobson – Mark Radoja$47,271
7J.C. Tran – Nam Le – Antonio Gutierrez$36,008
8Connor Drinan – Mike Aron$27,967
9Dietrich Fast – Moritz Dietrich$22,156