Addamo and Kolev Victories End 2021 WSOP Las Vegas
That’s it. After 55 days, 88 live tournaments, nearly 200 daily tournaments, and countless cash games, the 2021 World Series of Poker in Las Vegas is over.
The WSOP Europe continues over in the Czech Republic, but the live and online events in the United States wrapped late into the night on November 22.
Even more significant, this was goodbye to the Rio. Seventeen years after the WSOP moved from Binion’s to the Rio Convention Center, the series will move to Bally’s and Paris for the 2022 live events. Due to new ownership of the Rio, Caesars needed to move it and decided on the convention centers at Bally’s and Paris, which connect on the Las Vegas Strip. Speculating about the new adventure is a topic for another day.
Before saying goodbye, let’s wrap up the final two tournaments.
Event 87: $100K NLHE High Roller
Only five players returned to play this high-stakes event to its conclusion. Michael Addamo had a significant chip lead to start things off on Day 3, but Sean Perry got a double to stay in the game, and Sam Soverel ousted Henrik Hecklen to climb the chip ladder. And when Soverel doubled through Addamo, it changed the make-up of the final four.
Perry departed in fourth place. Addamo and Soverel battled until Addamo booted Soverel out in third, and Addamo went into heads-up with 28M chips to the 5M of Kevin Rabichow. Addamo quickly won the tournament for his fourth career bracelet and second one of this series in Vegas.
In a chat with PokerNews, Addamo commented on it all:
“I’ve been playing nonstop for three and a half months straight, so I am ready for a break.”
|Event 87: Day 3 of 3||$100K buy-in||NLHE High Roller (1RE)|
|Total prize pool:||$6,192,000|
|Final table results:||1st place:||Michael Addamo (Australia) $1,958,569|
|2nd place:||Kevin Rabichow (USA) $1,210,487|
|3rd place:||Sam Soverel (USA) $830,992|
|4th place:||Sean Perry (USA) $590,344|
|5th place:||Henrik Hecklen (Denmark) $434,523|
|6th place:||Sorel Mizzi (Canada) $331,806|
|7th place:||Sam Grafton (UK) $263,227|
|8th place:||Mikita Badziakouski (Belarus) $217,274|
|9th place:||Bill Klein (USA) $186,909|
Michael Addamo takes down the $100,000 High Roller to earn $1,958,560 and his fourth career gold bracelet and second of the 2021 series.
📸: @hayleyocho https://t.co/2CQ7vlxgbL pic.twitter.com/M5luJ7cooV
— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) November 24, 2021
Event 88: $5K 8-Handed NLHE
Thirty players made Day 2 of this fast-paced tournament, and the goal was to play down to a winner. It did move along at a nice clip, as Brian Yoon started the trail to the payout cage with a 30th place exit for $14,366. Joao Vieira busted later in 19th place for $16,825, and Felipe Ramos followed in 14th place for $20,087. Shaun Deeb took 12th place, with Danny Wong out in 11th and Ben Yu in tenth. Justin Liberto’s exit in ninth place for $38,222 left eight players.
That started the final table action. Boris Kolev was one of the table’s chipleaders and took out Lee Markholt in eighth place, while the other chipleader, Uri Reichenstein, busted Niko Koop in sixth and Z Stein in fifth. Reichenstein seemed to be running away with it until several players doubled through him. Kolev regained some of his former chip stacks and busted Ramon Colillas in fourth. Reichenstein sent Huy Nguyen out in third, but Kolev had the chip lead going into heads-up.
Kolev seemed to be heading straight for victory, though Reichenstein doubled to stay alive. But Kolev stayed strong and captured the last bracelet of the Vegas series. He told PokerNews:
“I’m feeling good. I started to tell people I’m gonna win the last tournament. It’s crazy because somehow I knew but I could not prove before the tournament. … It’s pretty cool. We’re going to celebrate now and enjoy the life.”
|Event 88: Day 2 of 2||$5K buy-in||NLHE (1RE)|
|Total prize pool:||$2,449,238|
|Final table results:||1st place:||Boris Kolev (Bulgaria) $511,184|
|2nd place:||Uri Reichenstein (Israel) $315,936|
|3rd place:||Huy Nguyen (USA) $222,310|
|4th place:||Ramon Colillas (Spain) $158,972|
|5th place:||Z Stein (USA) $115,558|
|6th place:||Niko Koop (Germany) $85,411|
|7th place:||George Wolff (USA) $64,207|
|8th place:||Lee Markholt (USA) $49,107|
|9th place:||Justin Liberto (USA) $38,222|
— Kevin Mathers (@Kevmath) November 24, 2021
The final gold bracelet of the 2021 WSOP goes to Bulgaria's Boris Kolev.
Winning Event #88: $5,000 NLH 8-Max, Kolev walks away with the golden hardware and $511,184.
— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) November 24, 2021
At the end of this 2021 WSOP in Las Vegas, it was time to say goodbye to the good and the bad, the ups and the downs of the Rio All-Suite Hotel and Casino. Everyone has had different experiences at the property, so many will opine as they choose.
Haley Hochstetler captured some striking images of the teardown of the WSOP in the ballrooms, making it all feel real.
Kevin Mathers recounted many of his years at the Rio and posted a long Twitter thread as those moments struck.
(4/?) The bar just outside of Pavilion.
Informally known as Hal’s, it was the place players went to celebrate, unwind or tell some bad beat stories.
Unfortunately, Hal passed away from cancer a few weeks ago. He is dearly missed. pic.twitter.com/GnlTXcELXi
— Kevin Mathers (@Kevmath) November 18, 2021
(8/?) The media room
Many an hour was spent working on their computers to let their poker communities know what was going on at the WSOP, and also to ask for their food vouchers.
Players would also come in ask the WSOP staff to fix their profiles/flags/etc pic.twitter.com/4TWwxP7bka
— Kevin Mathers (@Kevmath) November 21, 2021
Personally, I have many memories from the Rio, as it was where I started live reporting at the WSOP. Over the years, I covered tournaments, conducted interviews, paid too much money for iced tea, and met some of the most wonderful people I’ll ever know. And through it all, there was a bar in the casino that kept me sane. Often, it was the company of colleagues and friends at that bar. Sometimes, it was a place to breathe, take a break, recharge.
Last night at the Rio for me. Hooker bar, I think I'll miss you most of all. pic.twitter.com/FapxWxvcdT
— Jennifer Newell (@WriterJen) November 16, 2021
Take care, Rio. I hope to see you remodeled and looking better in future years.