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'The Dragon' triumphs in WSOP $1.5K No-limit Hold'em event

9 June 2017

David Pham

David Pham (photo by WSOP)

Name: David Pham
Nationality: Vietnamese
Birthplace: Vietnam
Current Residence: Bell Gardens, California
Age: 50
Profession: Poker player
Number of WSOP Cashes: 47
Number of WSOP Final Table Appearances: 13
Number of WSOP Gold Bracelet Victories (with this tournament): 3
Best Previous WSOP Finish: 1st (twice) – 2011 WSOP Event #9: $2,000 Limit S.H.O.E.; 2006 WSOP Event #25: $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout
Personal Facts: Married and has six children. Once worked in a dry-cleaning business operated by his cousin, Men "The Master" Nguyen.

After a long and hard-fought heads-up battle, David 'The Dragon' Pham has earned his third World Series of Poker bracelet in Event #12: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em. He defeated a tough competitor in Jordan Young and pocketed $391,960 for his efforts today.

The final table lasted about seven hours and 40 minutes and took a total of 230 hands. Heads-up play made up the bulk of that, ending in 130 hands and three hours of play. This event attracted a total of 1,739 entries for a total prize pool of $2,347,650, paying out 262 spots.

In the final hand, Pham shipped it in on the button and Young called after looking at one card, an ace. Pham tabled king-nine and Young slowly peeled a seven as his kicker. The board appeared to be safe for Young, but a king came on the river and it was all over. Young earned himself $242,160 for his deep run today. Young came in to heads-up play with a very large lead, but Pham chipped away and eventually closed out.

Pham has amassed just shy of $10,000,000 in earnings after this win, including WSOP bracelets from 2001 in the $2,100 S.H.O.E. event, in 2006 in the $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout and today's event, 11 years later. Pham has 33 recorded wins, along with a myriad of final tables. He also now has 25 six-figure cashes, with his largest coming from his runner-up finish in the 2007 Legends of Poker $9,700 Main Event for $800,185.

When asked what it felt like to win after so many years, Pham responded, "Of course the money comes first, but winning a bracelet means so much! It took me 10 years to win again." His rail, along with Young's, was loud and supportive and stood by him for the majority of the day.

Some of the notables that made the money in this event include Phil Collins (19th place - $12,135), Mike Sexton (26th place - $12,135), Mike Leah (27th place - $12,135), Michael Gagliano (61st place - $5,795), Loni Harwood (74th place - $4,315), and Andy Frankenberger (107th place - $3,055).

Marquis Mccain (10th place - $23,964) was the first elimination from the final table after he lost a race situation to Melissa Gillett. Not far behind him was Aditya Agarwal (9th place - $30,774). Agarwal lost most of his chips once reaching the final table and was unable to hang on to a short stack. The eliminations were coming quickly as Huihan Wu (8th place - $39,969) was next to fall when he ran into Roman Korenev's set of threes.

Billy Rodgers (7th place - $52,503) came across a cooler situation when his ace-king of clubs wasn't good enough to beat Pham's pocket aces. After the dinner break, Nathan Pfluger (6th place - $69,741) ran his pocket pair of sixes into an over pair of Young and could not catch a set. In one of the biggest hands early on, Kevin Trettin (5th place - $93,667) turned a full house but his opponent, Young, would river a bigger full house, sending him to the rail.

Just a few hands later, Gillett (4th place - $127,180) the principal from Australia, lost a big hand and was left with only one big blind. She would get her remaining chips in against two players, but was unable to find any help. The remaining three players were still fairly deep, but it would be Roman Korenev (3rd place - $174,559) getting all of his chips in the middle in a dominated position vs Pham. Both players flopped top pair, but Pham held the better kicker eliminating Korenev and setting up an epic heads-up match between Pham and Young.

1. David Pham, U.S. - $391,960
2. Jordan Young, U.S. - $242,160
3. Roman Korenev, Russia - $174,559
4. Melissa Gillett, Australia - $127,180
5. Kevin Trettin, U.S. - $93,667
6. Nathan Pfluger, U.S. - $69,741
7. Billy Rodgers, U.S. - $52,503
8. Huihan Wu, U.S. - $39,969
9. Aditya Agarwal, India - $30,774

(Article courtesy of World Series of Poker)

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