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Poker news | Sep 29, 2021

Top 5 Hands in WSOP History

By RTR Alex

Top 5 Hands in WSOP History

Over the years we’ve seen an abundance of great hands in the World Series of Poker. We’ve had more than our fair share of Phil Hellmuth classic freak-outs and seen some crazy things, like Scott Farnsworth accidentally signing up to play in 2015 and coming in 2nd place in the $1,500 Limit Hold’em Tournament.

With the 2021 WSOP starting today, we wanted to give you an idea of just what you can expect in the coming weeks. If you’re not on the edge of your seat already, maybe this will get you there... here's our list of the Top 5 Poker Hands ever seen in WSOP history.

#5: Pocket Aces vs Pocket Aces - 2014 Connor Drinan vs Cary Katz

Now we all know, the last thing you want to see when you’re holding pocket aces is for your only competition left in the hand… to have the exact same thing, and this Katz vs Drinan showdown has just that.

Lon McEachern (also known as the "voice of poker") has said that this may be the worst beat in the history of tournament poker and we think he just might be right. With everything riding on the river, this hand could be the hardest-hitting runner runner ever.

#4: The Bluff of the Century – 2003 Moneymaker vs Farha

By now, we all know the tale of Chris Moneymaker and his road to winning the 2003 WSOP Main Event in Las Vegas Nevada. He was a complete underdog entering the tournament, somehow knocking out the likes of poker legends Phil Ivey and Johnny Chan and pulling off one of the best plays in tournament poker history - now dubbed "The Bluff of The Century".

He’s heads-up against Farha in the final round of the Main Event, with $2.5 million and the prestigious WSOP bracelet on the line, Moneymaker all-in bluffs Sam Farha with absolutely nothing in his hand, except king-high…

Take a look at Moneymaker’s full WSOP story and the Bluff of the Century here:

#3: 2018 Main Event: AA vs KK vs KK on the Final Table Bubble

With 10 players remaining at the unofficial final table for the 2018 main event, we saw one of the most mathematically improbable pre-flop deals ever - Nick Manion is dealt pocket aces, while both Antione Labat and Yueqi Zhu are given pocket-kings… This must be the craziest pocket pair face-off in WSOP history.

The possibility of a seat at the final table is so close for all 3 and these pocket pairs were just too good to throw away - Zhu moves all in pre-flop and gets a call from both Labat and Manion. The moment comes to show their hands, and as you can guess - everyone's heart drops for a second.

The flop comes 7♣J♦4♣ and the only thing left is the slimmest chance for Labat to pick up a flush… but the turn is a 3♠ and it’s all over. Zhu goes out in 10th place in an unimaginable way. Labat goes from having the 3rd biggest stack, to moving onto the final table with next to nothing. All while Nick Manion becomes the chip leader and ends up finishing 4th overall - cashing in a whopping $2,825,000 in prize money.

#2: All-in and a Pocket Ace Exposed – A Double Knockout

In one of the most dramatic WSOP moments ever, this hand has everything – millions of dollars on the line, an exposed ace on the table, the floor being called to assist and a double knockout… you couldn’t ask for more.

We open with Bryon Kaverman pushing all-in with A♣5♣. The action then moves Salomon in the with A♥K♥, who somehow – upon calling the bet and pushing his chips in – briefly flips the ace face-up. The floor is called over and rules that the card must now remain face-up for the rest of the hand.

What happens next will remain in the history books forever, but we won't spoil this one for you…

#1: 2010 Main Event – Affleck’s Bad Beat

For the final hand, we have the 2010 WSOP Main Event with the top 15 left, Duhamel and Affleck have the two biggest stacks between them, a final table position seemed guaranteed for both, but this river card had other plans.

Affleck holds pocket aces - A♣A♠ and Duhamel has pocket jacks - J♥J♣. After a few rounds of betting, Affleck pushes Duhamel all-in after the turn and he’s almost certain the pot is his.

Winning this hand would give Affleck a huge chip lead heading into the final table, which would put him in a great position to take first place overall and walk away with $8.9 million in prize money, but this river card leads to perhaps the most famous bad-beat knockout in main event history.

Check out Affleck's own runthrough of what went down: