Depaulo claims WSOP $500 The BIG 500 No-Limit Hold'em title

13 July 2020

On Sunday night, the 2020 World Series of Poker Online Event #12: $500 The BIG 500 No-Limit Hold'em attracted 1,624 players who rebought 803 times. The 2,427-entry field resulted in a $1,092.150 prize pool and after 12.5 hours of play, it was Ryan "joeyisamush" Depaulo walking away with a $159,563 top prize and his first gold bracelet.

Depaulo, who was literally playing from inside his car in a New Jersey Whole Foods parking lot, is a popular online poker personality, a self-described "degenerate gambler" who makes "+EV Vlogs about my -EV poker play." It was a bit of redemption for him as last summer he finished third in the 2019 WSOP Event #61: $400 Colossus for $208,643, which comprises the vast majority of his $225,644 in live tournament earnings.

Depaulo won in impressive fashion entering the final table with the chip lead and eliminating all but two competitors. It wasn't easy though as Depaulo had to overcome Jack "EarlGrey" Salter in heads-up play. The Brit, who has $8 million in lifetime earnings, was seeking his first bracelet as well, but despite claiming the chip lead at one point, Depaulo ultimately regained it and closed it out.

After "pill_ivey" bubbled in 372nd place, the in-the-money eliminations mounted. Among those to cash but fall short of the final table were James "meatsweats" Carroll (221st - $982.93), Daniel "DNegs" Negreanu (205th - $1,092.15), Kevin "ImaLuckSac" MacPhee (144th - $1,310.58), Max "MaxSparrow" Pescatori (108th - $1,419.79), Katie "kateline" Lindsay (57th - $2,402.73), Nick "duckflush" Pupillo (19th - $5,242.32), James "mig.com" Mackey (15th - $8,300.34), and final table bubble boy Spencer "PrideEgoBalz" Christenson (10th - $10,593.85).

Depaulo began the final table as chip leader while "Giemeaction" was the short stack. Not surprisingly, "Givemeaction" was the first to go after his ace-queen suited failed to win a race against the pocket sixes of Sean "FilthyDiaper" Ruane.

Not long after, Dominic "rgdoc" Ricciardi ran ace-seven into Depaulo's ace-queen to fall in eighth place, and then Shannon "Aulophobia" Shorr bowed out in seventh when his ace-nine failed to overcome Depaulo's pocket kings. Shorr, on many people's shortlist as one of the best players without a bracelet, scored his 96th career WSOP cash and is closing in on 2.5M in lifetime WSOP winnings.

Depaulo then scored two quick eliminations – Terry "mrterry007" Fleischer and "Jessyboo" – to take a commanding chip lead into four-handed play; in fact, he had nearly 5:1 over his next closest competitor and approximately two-thirds of the chips in play.

Depaulo soon got lucky with ace-eight to dispatch Hayden "Luckbox89" Fortini, who saw his ace-king go down in flames when an eight hit the flop. At that point, Salter won a flip with pocket fours against the ace-queen of Ruane, who exited in third place. That gave Salter ammunition, roughly 21 million in chips, to go into heads-up play against Depaulo, who had 28 million.

The two battled hard, but before too long Salter claimed the lead and began to apply pressure. It looked as if the Brit was going to win the title, but then Depaulo got lucky to double back into the lead. Soon after, Salter got it in with ace-jack and failed to get there against Depaulo's pocket queens.

(Article courtesy of World Series of Poker)

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