Erik Seidel Joins Exclusive Club, Wins WSOP Super High Roller Event

Gamblers Daily Digest -

Poker legend Erik Seidel has captured his historic 10th World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet, cementing his place among the game’s all-time greats. Seidel took down the the $50,000 No Limit Hold’em Super High Roller event #7 at the Atlantis Resort in The Bahamas for a $1.7 million top prize.

The 63-year-old New Yorker defeated a stacked field of 137 entries, including many of today’s top professionals to add $1,704,400 to his live tournament earnings. His latest triumph comes over three decades after winning his first WSOP title back in 1992 at Binion’s Horseshoe in Las Vegas.

With his tenth piece of WSOP jewelry, Seidel joins an exclusive club of just four other players to reach double-digit bracelet counts. He is part of a four-way tie with the ranks of Phil Ivey, Johnny Chan, and Doyle Brunson, the ‘godfather of poker’ who passed away mid-this year, as they all share the distinction of having won 10 WSOP bracelets. Phil Hellmuth still maintains his position at the top of the leaderboard with an impressive 17 bracelets.

Event #7: The $50,000 Super High Roller at the 2023 WSOP Paradise tournament garnered a strong field and a prize pool of $6,850,000. Among the 21 players who received cash prizes, Seidel emerged victorious at the final table, which featured notable players including Adrian Mateos, Jason Koon, Jonathan Jaffe, and Alex Foxen.

A Masterful Performance by Seidel

Seidel’s run to WSOP bracelet number 10 exemplified the masterful poker skills and creativity he has displayed throughout his Hall of Fame-worthy career. He brought a dominating presence to the final table, at one point accumulating over half the chips in play while navigating a tough lineup.

The Hall-of-Famer emerged as the runner-up in chip count among the 17 participants who advanced to Day 2, with Seth Gottlieb leading the pack. Gottlieb, although not widely recognized in the high-stakes tournament scene and primarily focused on cash games, had amassed an impressive $1.4 million in live earnings prior to the Super High Roller event.

The two competitors naturally found themselves in a heads-up battle, with the aspiring player from New Jersey attempting to surpass the seasoned veteran seated opposite him. Seidel described Seth as a smart player with an excellent track record in high-stakes cash games. 

Indeed, with a deep understanding of the game and a history of impressive accomplishments, Seth has consistently performed well in both cash games and live tournaments. The poker icon understood that he was not an amateur and posed a significant threat to opponents, applying intense pressure during gameplay.

When heads-up play began, Seidel held nearly a 4:1 chip advantage over the only player left standing between him and history. Seth put up a valiant fight, but Seidel’s poise and precision eventually prevailed after just over an hour of sparring. 

Seidel’s open jam with queen-ten and Gottlieb’s call with ace-jack nearly concluded the heads-up battle in just a few hands. Seidel took the lead with a ten-high flop, but Gottlieb managed to even the odds against the esteemed Poker Hall of Famer by hitting a straight with the Wheel cards on the subsequent rounds.

However, a dramatic all-in confrontation delivered the final blow, locking up bracelet #10 for Seidel, leaving Seth to console himself with second-place earnings of $1,052,800.

Big Victories at 2023 WSOP Paradise

Seidel’s most notable victories at the 2023 WSOP Paradise came against Sam Greenwood and Steve O’Dwyer, two world-class players with multiple bracelets of their own. He didn’t make any mistakes that saw him finish fourth and miss out on his tenth bracelet on the $10,000 buy-in Omaha Hi-Lo 8 or Better Championship at Horseshoe Las Vegas. 

Seidel capitalized on premium hands at opportune times, applying maximum pressure when he sensed weakness from his opponents. His balanced style kept the table off-balance, mixing textbook aggressive ploys with some well-timed traps.

Orpen Kisacikoglu’s incredible progression from having only one big blind on Day 1 to achieving a third-place finish resulted in a $778,300 payout. It set the stage for an intense one-on-one battle, in which Seidel held a significant chip advantage over Kisacikoglu due to his king-ten surpassing the Turk’s king-nine.

As he whittled the field down, Seidel retained his focus amidst the growing pressure. He refused to relinquish control as the prize money jumped substantially in the later stages. His experience and mental toughness proved invaluable assets under the bright lights of the Penn & Teller Theater.

A Champion Forged in Decades of Excellence

Seidel’s poker journey began in the 1980s when he honed his skills in underground New York cardrooms. Erik Seidel now resides in truly rarefied air as just the fifth player to reach ten WSOP victories. He joins poker icons Johnny Chan, Doyle Brunson, Phil Ivey, Phil Hellmuth, and Johnny Moss in the elite double-digit bracelet club.

Throughout the years, Seidel has conquered prestigious tournaments like the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event and the Aussie Millions Main Event. On the WSOP, Erik Seidel has won an astounding $5.5 million in bracelet events across all games and tournament varieties. 

His ten titles have come in Limit Hold’em, No-Limit Hold’em, Limit Omaha Hi-Lo, 2-7 Lowball Draw, and Pot-Limit Omaha tournaments, at buy-ins ranging from $1,500 to $25,000. Seidel’s second-largest WSOP score came two years ago when he won over $977k for capturing the 2021 GGPoker Event #11: Super MILLION$ High Roller NLH. Other notable payouts include over $500k in the 2007 2-7 Lowball Championship, $611k in a 2005 NLH, and $411k in 2001 Event #22: $3,000 No-Limit Hold’em event.

Despite facing stiff competition from a new generation of poker prodigies, Seidel has remained remarkably resilient. His ability to analyze opponents, make calculated decisions under pressure, and adapt to different playing styles has allowed him to continue thriving at the highest levels. 

Wrapping Up

Seidel’s journey to his tenth bracelet was paved with strategic brilliance and unwavering determination. He outlasted a field of 137 poker heavyweights, navigating through a bevy of skilled opponents before emerging victorious at the final table. Heads-up play saw Seidel face Seth Gottlieb in a tense showdown, where his experience and calculated moves ultimately secured him the coveted trophy and a staggering $1,704,400 prize.

Author: Bryan Cook