Many people were of the opinion that Black Friday would cut the number of US poker players at the World Series of Poker 2011 as well as bring down the US player WSOP winner count. And although, the participation of US players in the tourney has indeed dropped, the winners are still being churned out!

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For instance, this year saw 51000 people and more present in the event so far, having come from many different countries including the US. This only proves that in the bigger scheme of things, Black Friday has had not much effect in destroying the world’s poker industry. US Poker player Justin Pechie won the WSOP tile in the event number 41 which hosted the $1,500 Limit Hold ‘em Shootout championship game. Unfortunately, he now plans to move to Canada – and we will have to wait and watch if this is the start of a trend to come.

Surprisingly, this was Pechie’s first gold bracelet win. He played with 538 players and won a $167k plus a paycheck.

This 26 year old poker player comes from Putnam, Connecticut and has been player poker for the last six years. He was one among the several thousand Americans who was affected by the black Friday incident, but that did not stop him from participating in the WSOP and winning the gold bracelet. Pechie is now planning to move to Canada to have a career in online poker during the day and winning this whopping is sure to make his moving expenses a lot easier now.

Of the three shootout tournaments conducted this year at the WSOP, this was the final one, which means that the players’ development in the game depended on wins in a series of table matches. There was just one elimination and the number of played was based on the number of participants. According to Pechie, he had to win three consecutive tables to win the title.

Pechie defeated poker experts like Dale Eberle, Jordan Rich, Ari Engel and Eugene Katchalov. Pechie after winning said, “Shootouts are my favorite kind of tournament because there is more short-handed play throughout the tournament. That gives an edge to people who play short-handed. In a regular tournament, it’s always a full ring game until you make it to the final table. The shootout format gives people who play short-handed well an edge.”

Commenting on the money he has made and the impact it has in an uncertain career such as poker, “It (the gold bracelet) means a lot. But I must be honest that the money means more, because of the Black Friday thing. So, I have a bigger cushion to fall back on, with the uncertainty of online poker. But the gold bracelet does mean a lot to me.”

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