Winning a bracelet at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) is regarded as the pinnacle goal for a tournament poker player’s career. No other tour carries more prestige and features larger fields than the yearly summer event held in Las Vegas at the Rio. Since the era of internet poker boomed the industry, the top poker pros in the world have had difficulty winning bracelets, much less having years with multiple bracelet wins. It seems however, that this trend has changed in 2009, as three of the world’s top players have each won two bracelets so far in this year’s series: Phil Ivey, Jeffrey Lisandro, and Brock Parker.
For Ivey, a well-known spokesperson for Full Tilt Poker, winning two bracelets this year has given him a whopping seven for his career. To start off the WSOP, Ivey won Event #8, the $2,500 No Limit Deuce to Seven Lowball tournament, by besting 147 players. Down by a 4:1 chip margin heads-up, Ivey fought back against John Monnette to win his sixth bracelet and $96,361. Ivey’s second bracelet came in Event #25, the $2,500 Omaha/Seven Card Stud High-Low Split tournament. To win that event, Ivey was heads-up with a 3:2 chip advantage against Ming Lee to take home the $220,538 first place prize money along with his seventh bracelet.
Noted poker pro Jeffrey Lisandro is also a multiple bracelet winner this year after capturing his second overall WSOP bracelet in Event #16, the $1,500 Seven Card Stud tournament. With a big lead heading into the heads-up match against Eric Pardey, Lisandro got the job done and took home a $124,975 payday. He followed up that impressive performance by winning the $10,000 World Championship of Seven Card Stud High-Low Split Eight or Better. Lisandro’s performance this year is unquestionably one of the top poker accomplishments for Seven Card Stud players in recent memory. With these wins, Lisandro can be arguably considered one of the best Stud tournament players in the world. With his $431,656 win in the $10,000 event, his first place finishes this year have totaled $556,631.
Brock Parker, better known as “t soprano” online, got his 2009 WSOP started off on the right foot by first winning the $2,500 Short-Handed Limit Hold’em event (#14). Besting a field of 367 players, Parker ended heads-up against popular poker pro Daniel Negreanu. In a battle that took two hours to complete, Negreanu shipped in his chips with K-10 on an A-10-6-4 board and Parker looked him for the win with A-J. On top of his bracelet, Parker took him $223,688 in cash. Parker wasn’t done, as he also took down the $2,500 Six-Handed No Limit Hold’em event. This time, Parker beat 1,068 players to win his first ever No Limit Hold’em event at the WSOP. Catching pocket queens heads-up, he called the all-in from opponent Joe Serock, who had 10-10. The queens held up by hitting a set and Parker took in an incredible $552,745.
Phil Ivey is a well-known spokesperson for Mac-friendly poker room Full Tilt, while Lisandro is a sponsored pro at PokerStars. Parker is originally from Maryland and now has 13 career cashes at the WSOP, including four final tables. Prior to becoming one of the world’s best poker players, Parker played tournament Magic: The Gathering. His live tournament winnings exceed $1,175,000, including two in the money finishes on the World Poker Tour.