Exactly fourteen days after the tournament began, Daniel Weinman raked the last of the 602.5 million chips in play after winning the final hand at 3:20 pm local time.
Image: credit: Jamie Thomson with PokerORG
The Atlanta, Georgia native earned the Main Event record-breaking $12,100,000 and his place in the record books. He outlasted the field of 10,043 entries which generated the astronomical $93,399,900 prize pool for his second WSOP bracelet.
2023 WSOP Main Event final table results
The path to Weinman’s record victory
The three-handed play featured fast action; players acted about as quickly as your local card room’s $1/$3 game. The group was one of the most relaxed and talkative Main Event final days we’ve ever seen. As a fan of action and quick play, it was incredible.
Weinman, Jones, and Walton came into the second final-table day with very deep stacks, and many expected it may be a grind with no overwhelming leader and about 300 big blinds in play among the three.
Adam Walton, the first player eliminated, had other plans.
Walton came out firing and went down in flames
Walton came out firing; he was aggressive and acting extremely quickly. He limp-raised queen-six offsuit one of the first hands he played, setting the tone early. He three-bet jammed A♠️K♣️ on a 5♦️J♦️7 flop. That time, he had the best hand against the ace-queen of Jones, so it got through. His aggression over the first hour was unrelenting.
“I feel like Walton’s been in every single hand since we started,” said commentator Donnie Peters. “Coming in here, not backing down, really going for it.”
However, one hour would be as long as Walton would last in this battle under the lights.
In his final hand, Jones opened to 6,000,000 with Q♦️6♦️ at blinds of 1,250,000/2,500,000/2,500,000. Walton just called in the small blind with 8♠️8♣️. Weinman found the dream hand in the big blind: pocket aces. He three-bet to 27,000,000. Jones folded. Back on Walton, he moved all in for 210,000,000, and Weinman of course called immediately.
A total of 427,500,000 were in play in this pot, and Weinman was the big favorite to take it down. Walton watched the final board of his Main Event run out to see himself unimproved, and the massive pot shipped to Weinman. Walton was out in third place faster than anyone could have imagined, though his early aggression suggested he wanted all the chips or none of them, and the latter option prevailed.
Adam Walton, of Seattle Washington, saw his previous live tournament best score was $283,072 dwarfed as he took home $4,000,000 for his third-place finish.
“My favorite thing about watching Walton play was he went with his instincts every time,” said Jesse Sylvia, “He was very confident in them. Sometimes it doesn’t work out, but it got him extremely far in this tournament.”
A heads-up match for $5.6 million
Suddenly, we were down to two. ICM out the window, they were playing for it all with nowhere to hide. Weinman with 443,000,000 chips and Steven Jones with 165,500,000 chips. The money came out to the main feature table, the chairs were positioned on opposite ends, and each player took a short break with their rail.
It was time for heads-up play of the biggest Main Event in history.
Weinman kept a large smile on his face throughout the final table. However, when the money was in front of his face, he took a few deep breaths in clear recognition of the moment. He was ready.
Heads-up play also lasted about an hour, both players taking turns winning small pots on the path to the collision that would end it all.
The final hand was a top pair against top pair battle with Weinman holding the better kicker. On a board of J♠️5♠️2♦️4♣️, Jones jammed the flop in position with J♣️8♦️ after Weinman’s flop check-raise and turn bet. Weinman took his time holding K♣️J♦️, top pair with a good kicker, before calling it off. Once he saw Jones’ hand, he knew he was one card away from the most prestigious title in the poker world.
The ace of hearts hit the river, bringing to fruition what Weinman started two weeks ago. All the chips were his. The bracelet was his. The $12.1 million was his. He embraced his rail immediately, Shaun Deeb and Josh Arieh’s faces prominently buried in the champion’s chest.
Weinman had won the biggest prize in WSOP Main Event history. It took less than 2.5 hours to close it out on the final day, the rails barely had time to get rowdy or show off their best chants.
“Pinot Grigio! Pinto Grigio!” they shouted. “White…wein,” smiled Weinman.
It was the shortest Main Event final table in quite some time, only 161 hands were played. The previous shortest was when Joe Mckeehen won in 2015 with 184 hands played.
Congratulations to Daniel Weinman, forever the winner of the 2023 World Series of Poker Main Event.
You’re on top of poker’s biggest stage, receiving the biggest prize. Enjoy it, you deserve it.
Preview Image: Jamie Thomson with PokerORG