The 2023 World Series of Poker is officially underway in Las Vegas, and that means that some of poker's biggest headlines of the year are currently being written there. This year, the WSOP decided to kick things off with a massive $1,000 buy-in Mystery Bounty Event. Originally, the event guaranteed one $1 million bounty. However, after an incredible turnout of over 18,000 over four Day 1 sessions, enough money was in the bounty pool that two different players would earn $1 million, as would the eventual winner of the event, Tyler Brown. That means that in the first weekend of the WSOP, three millionaires have already been made!
First Millionaire – Shant Marashlian
The first player to become an instant millionaire was Shant Marashlian.
Marashlian had $231,000 in live earnings before this event, with a top career score of $36,000. To put that in perspective, the $1 million bounty he pulled is nearly 28 times that number.
Second Millionaire – Patrick Liang
The second lucky player to pull a seven-figure bounty envelope was Patrick Liang. Video of his lucky pull can be seen below.
How to win $1,000,000 instantly!— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) June 5, 2023
Good job Patrick Liang pic.twitter.com/nHZ25UOzhK
According to table mate and WSOP bracelet winner Blair Hinkle, Liang was quick to share his recent splendor, tweeting that Liang was giving every player at the table $1,000.
Guy at my table pulled the other $1,000,000 bounty chest 😢, but first words out of his mouth were “everyone at my table gets a thousand!”— Blair Hinkle (@blur5f6) June 5, 2023
What a cool gesture. Thanks Patrick Liang! #RunGood #WSOP pic.twitter.com/0I833kveGn
Liang is a poker pro from Taiwan who had $300,000 in live tournament earnings before this million-dollar pull. In fact, Liang has just three registered cashes in the United States, and all of them were in events with a buy-in of $600 or less. What an incredible result for Liang.
$500,000 Winner – Klint Tevaearai
While everyone’s goal was to earn a seven-figure payday, we are sure you won’t find Klint Tevaearai complaining too much. He was the lucky player to pull the lone $500,000 bounty, pulling it before both million-dollar bounties were claimed.
Klint Tevaearai wins the $500,000 Mystery Bounty! pic.twitter.com/SU8wxgzRsu— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) June 4, 2023
Tevaearai had $132,000 in live earnings before this incredible hit, with half of that cash coming in an $800 Monster Stack victory at the Venetian last year. The final bounty over $100k, good enough for a quarter of a million dollars, went to poker pro and WSOP bracelet winner Eric Baldwin.
Some other highlights from the bounty section of the event can be viewed in the reel below.
Bounty season 🏆 Congratulations to all the winners and thank you to all players that participated in this record breaking event! pic.twitter.com/6Lb37BTMlo— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) June 5, 2023
The final table of the event played out on Day 4 of the event, with high stakes poker regular Dan Shak the biggest headliner of the final eight. He bowed out in 7th place.
Ultimately, Tyler Brown defeated Guang Chen heads up, ending things in style, with an impressive hero call on the turn with just ace high. Chen had king high, and couldn’t catch up on the river.
This INSANE call might have just made Tyler Brown a millionaire.— PokerGO (@PokerGO) June 6, 2023
With all the money on the line, Brown finds an INCREDIBLE call against Chen Guang with just ace-high and one card to come. pic.twitter.com/SqlAMhGveN
|4||Steven Thompson||Costa Rica||$330,150|
|6||Tauan De Oliveira Naves||Brazil||$198,320|
There will be a $10,000 Secret Bounty Event later in the series, starting on June 14th.
Chad Eveslage Off to a Scorching Start
The other major headline coming out of Vegas today is the historic start from poker pro Chad Eveslage. After winning his first WSOP bracelet last summer, Eveslage has followed that up with an incredible opening week, winning two of the first ten bracelet events. After taking down the $1,500 version of the Dealer’s Choice Event, where 21 different games can be played, for $131,879, Eveslage proved he could also play with the big boys, winning the $10,000 version of the event. He defeated a stack final table that included Dutch Boyd (2nd), Ari Engel (5th), and Marco Johnson (6th).
|1||Chad Eveslage||United States||$311,428|
|2||Dutch Boyd||United States||$192,479|
|3||Zack Freeman||United States||$139,048|
|4||Dustin Dirksen||United States||$101,709|
|5||Ari Engel||United States||$75,341|
|6||Marco Johnson||United States||$56,528|
While winning two WSOP bracelets in the same summer is not all that uncommon, especially with the increased total of events year over year, it has been nearly 10 years since a player was able to win three bracelets in one series. That was George Danzer in 2014.
Stay tuned for more recaps of all of the action from the 2023 WSOP!