Las Vegas, NV – For Phil Hellmuth, the drought is over. The crowd can be heard chanting "Ten! Ten! Ten!" After three years of chasing the elusive goal, he has finally won his 10th World Series of Poker bracelet. In addition to the end of his three-year drought, Hellmuth has tied history. Third time's the charm rings true in Hellmuth's case. This year, Hellmuth participated in six tournaments, reaching the final table three times. In the $5000 No Limit Hold 'Em, Hellmuth got to the final table only to have a relative newcomer to the circuit, Jeff Cabrillas, beat him.

Being the chip leader in the final table, Hellmuth once again set his eyes on the chance to mentioned in the same breath as Brunson and Chan in WSOP history. This final table would not be an easy win. Hellmuth was surrounded by a large number of established pros: Ralph Perry, David Plastik, Juha Helppi and "Tony G" Guoga.

Running hot helped the "Poker Brat" as he dominated Perry's pocket 9s with his pocket Js. More luck came Hellmuth's way when he survived an all-in against Cabrera. Cabrera flopped a straight with Js, 10d. Phil hit two diamond runners to make his King-high Flush. Hellmuth knocked out another player with his Ad, 10c when the flop gave him a set of Aces.

When the final heads up match was beginning Juha Helppi had the chip lead with twice as many chips as Phil. Hellmuth was on the verge of being denied another bracelet. He pushed all in with his pocket 5s against Helppi's Ah 6d and was able to pull out a full house against Juha's diamond flush. His full house was followed by pocket Kings making him the chip leader once again. Ace Jack was the magic hand that sealed the victory for Phil. As he won the event, family and friends alike rushed the table to celebrate. "Unbelievable" says Hellmuth as commissioner Pollack presented Phil with the bracelet. Phil said that he thought he would never get it when asked about ever winning the elusive 10th bracelet.

Phil started off his pro career extremely fast, winning his first WSOP bracelet at the age of 23. Since the beginning of his poker career, Hellmuth has had thirty-six final tables appearances and earned more than $8 million dollars in winnings. Aside from his notable tournament career, his manners at the table are less than admirable. The constant criticism of players about their style of play has earned him a spotty reputation. With a nickname like Hell Mouth, it's not hard to see why some people dislike him. His expertise is tournament play with his cash game skills very questionable. On the show High Stakes Poker, he was highly criticized by other professional players about his lack of skill in the game. Whether you love him or hate him, you have to give credit to his durability and success at the WSOP.

His fans are breathing a sigh of relief, as the poker gods have finally brought Phil his deliverance. Many others are sighing in disgust, pondering how much this will stoke the already huge ego of the man known as the Poker Brat. This much is known for sure. Phil Hellmuth can now be mentioned in the same breath as Doyle "Texas Dolly" Brunson and Johnny "Orient Express" Chan; at least in tournament play. The next challenge for Phil is to set WSOP history and grab that 11th WSOP Bracelet making him stand alone as the biggest winner in the WSOP.

Joe Zusman

Joe Zusman