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U.K. high-stakes pro Elior “Crazy Elior” Sion overshadowed Daniel Negreanu to win his first WSOP bracelet in the prestigious $50,000 Poker Players Championship for $1.4 million last night.
All eyes were on Negreanu who had the final-table chip lead and was gunning for his seventh WSOP bracelet but wasn’t able to get much going.
Austrian Ivo Donev ended up busting Negreanu in fifth place where the Canadian picked up $300,852.
It’s not all bad for Negreanu who’s in the midst of a torrid WSOP that includes eight top 18 finishes, four final tables and a runner-up performance.
Unfortunately for Negreanu the controversial 2017 POY system still has him barely cracking the top 10.
Elior Sion Breaks Through
Prior to last night Elior Sion was likely most well-known for his play in the high-stakes online cash games where he terrorizes opponents as “Crazy Elior”.
Sion admitted after winning the PPC that he’s not really interested in the fame that comes with winning prestigious tournaments and prefers to stay out of the limelight.
It’s going to be slightly harder for Sion to fly under-the-radar in the future considering his name will be permanently etched on the Chip Reese Memorial Trophy joining the likes of Michael Mizrachi, David Bach and Brian Rast.
The London resident also said that he purposely went out of his way to avoid Negreanu at the final table and praised the Canadian’s mix game abilities.
Sion has always maintained that poker is a stepping stone and has plans to take some of the $1.4m from the PPC to start a real-estate business in the U.K.
Incredibly Sion, who’s almost exclusively a cash game player, has only played one tournament this year: The $50k PPC. He’s a perfect 1-1 in live tournaments.
Isaac Haxton Stymied in Third Place
When Daniel Negreanu busted in fifth place it appeared momentarily that the final table might belong to high-stakes wizard Isaac Haxton.
Haxton surged to the chip lead and peaked at over 10 million chips.
Eventually Haxton, who’s considered much stronger in NLHE and PLO than the other games, ran into a hand he couldn’t escape.
Haxton picked up pocket kings in NLHE and had the misfortune of smashing them into Johannes Becker’s pocket aces after a flop of 9♠ 8♥ 7♥ in a 18.2 million-chip pot.
Several hands later Haxton was eliminated in a round of seven-card stud and had to settle for third place and $595,812.
That gave Becker a massive chip lead of 19.3m to Sion’s 5.6m going into heads-up play.
The comeback was on, however, and Sion chipped away until finally pulling ahead in a round of Limit.
It turned into a back-and-forth battle with the chip lead changing hands numerous times but Sion finally landed the knockout blow by flopping a full house in a round of Omaha Hi-Lo.
Here’s a complete look at the final-table payouts for the $50k PPC:
1. Elior Sion — $1,395,767
2. Johannes Becker — $862,649
3. Isaac Haxton — $595,812
4. Ivo Donev — $419,337
5. Daniel Negreanu — $300,852
6. Paul Volpe — $220,111