1.Against All Odds


Los Angeles poker classics


Bad Beat Poker

Pot-Limit Omaha

Spooky Hand

World Poker Challenge

Pot-Limit Hold'em Tournaments

Foxwood's Poker

Five-Star World Poker

World Series of Poker-2000

World Series Poker Championship

2.World Series of Poker Hands

Youngest World Champion

World Series Poker-1999

World Series Poker-1998

World Series Poker-2002





U.S.. Poker Championship-1999


WSOP's Winner-2000


WSOP's Record-2003

"Big One" in WSOP-2003

3.World Poker Tour


World Poker Tour-2002

WPT's winner-2003



World Poker Tournament-2003

WPT's Event-2003

Foxwood's World Poker

Amir's Big Call

4.European Poker Tour

The Poker em

Poker In Amsterdam-1998

The Poker em-2000

Late Night Poker 3-2000


5.Reading other Player's mail


Tournaments of Champion-1999

A Tale Of Four Bluffs


Commerce Casino-2002

No-Limit Hold'em Event-2002


Phil’s Key Hand At The 2000 Poker em

The pageantry and prestige associated with the Poker EM is second only to that at the World Series of Poker.  Winning the prestigious three-day-long Poker EM would be a nice feather a anyone’s cap.  Unfortunately, my seven card stud tournament record from 1987 to 1999 was abysmal.  But since August 1999, I have had something of breakthrough in seven card stud tournaments.  I devoted that August of 1999 to improving my tournament poker game.  Every day of that month, I played in the Legends of Poker tournaments, and put maximum effort into analyzing the way I was playing.  From that point on, I made final tables in Stud at the 1999 Legends of Poker, the U..S. Poker Open Championship Stud event ($4,000 buy-in) in late 1999, and the Carnivale of Poker EM in Vienna in October 1999, and I made it deep in both World Series of Poker seven card stud events in 2000, as well.  For five Stud events in a row, starting in August 1999, I made it down to the final nine or better.

            But there was one common theme in every one of those events: I blew it down the stretch.  How thrilling, finally, after 12 years, to break through in seven card stud tournaments! To learn how to play poker card game tournament Stud on another level, after all those years.  Then, actually to play on that level for many hours in each Stud event, and to make the final table, only to self-destruct- and I know I did-late in all those events.

            Ouch! It still hurts when I think of all of those blown final tables in my mind’s eye.  The pain is especially strong when I think about one particular Stud event that I played in, the $5,000 buy-in seven card stud event at the 2000 World Series of Poker.  I played my heart out all day long and accumulated the chip lead, only to play poorly late at night poker, give away virtually all of my chips, and finish nineteenth.  Let’s move on-even writing about that ugly WSOP Stud performance causes me pain!

            In 2000, at the Poker EM, I vowed that if I was in position to win it, I would not blow it again, as I had in 1999.  If I was unlucky down the stretch, then so be it.  But, please, oh please, just don’t let me give away my chance to win another seven card stud title!

            In 2000, as in 1999, I made it through to the finals on the second round of qualifying.  After 72 of us began the final Championship event, I quickly took the chip lead, and managed to maintain that lead all the way down to the final two tables.  At this point, I was thinking, “Just don’t finish ninth again!” The final eight players were going to win a lot more money and, as before, they were going to play live in audio and video on the Internet at www.pokerem.com.  I told myself to pay close attention to reality, and make no bonehead plays this time around!

            I was enormously relieved when I did make it to the final tables, even thought poker I was now fourth place in chips.  I still had not been all-in during the event, and therefore I couldn’t have gone broke, not up until this point.  I had the low card games three of the first five hands at the final table, but I refused to let the fact that I had gone from $33,000 to about $23,000 by “low carding” bother me.  When you are the “low card” in Stud, you put in a bet to start the high limit action

Late in a tournament, this can be very expensive.  (I have a pet peeve about Stud-when players get angry at the dealers because they have the low card too often, especially when they’re winning all of the money during that particular dealer’s deal.  If you want to cry while playing Stud, then at least wait until you lose a couple of pots!)

            I knew that if I got upset about the fact that I had lost almost $10,000 holding the low card, I would become emotional and lose focus.  I thought, “It’s best for me just to concentrate on playing as well as I can play, and to let the cards take care of themselves.”  Again, I could handle getting unlucky and losing the title, but I couldn’t bear to self-destruct, play badly, and give the title away.

            When we hit a 10-minute break with four of us left, I didn’t even know what first place paid.   The first hand after the break, we broke a player, and were down to three.  That was when the following hand came up between Christoph Haller and me.  The antes were $2,000 per player, and the low card brought it in for $4,000 with a $10,000-$20,000 limit.  I was the low card with a four up and 4-2 in the hole.  So I threw in the mandatory $4,000 as the low card.  Christoph completed the bet to $10,000 total with a king up and A-J in the hole, and the other player folded a nine.

            While trying to read Christoph, I hesitated for a moment.  I asked myself, “Is my pair of fours the best hand right now?” At this moment, I couldn’t read Christoph, so I just called the $6,000 raise.  I caught a ten, and Christoph caught a six.  He was first to act, and he bet $10,000.  suddenly, it came to me that my pair of fours was the best hand monkey poker.  I don’t know exactly how it came to me, but I guess I had picked up something from the way Christoph bet his hand, or from his facial expressions.

            My ability to read other people well has allowed me to win many no-limit Hold’em title in the past, and a good read is especially deadly in no-limit Hold’em.  With this new read, I raised the bet $10,000 more, or $20,000 total to go. Christoph called the raise.  When he just called my $10,000 raise, I felt more strongly than ever that my pair of fours was the best hand.

            I caught another ten, for a board of 4-10-10 with hole cards of 4-2, and thus made two pair.  Christoph caught a jack, for a board of K-6-J and hole cards of A-J, and made a pair of jacks.  I bet $20,000, and Christoph called.  I didn’t like this.  I just wanted to win the pot right then and there, when I had paired tens, and bet $20,000.  At this point, I was pretty sure that Christoph had a pair of jacks, or possibly a pair of kings.  It also occurred to me that he might have an open-ended straight draw (10-J-Q-K), with Q-10 as hole cards.

            The next card, I caught a nine, for (4-2) 4-10-10-9, and Christoph caught an eight, for (A-J) K-6-J-8.  I bet his last $20,000, and he called the bet.  Christoph was now all-in, and effectively, so was I (with less than $10,000 left).  When you are all-in in the Poker EM, you are asked to expose all of your cards, and then the last card is dealt faceup.  Looking at Christoph’s hole cards.  I could see that I had the best hand, but now I needed it to hold up.

            In poker slang, “Here comes the skill card.”  I missed my full house (ten or four), which would have shut him out; but fortunately for me, christoph missed as well.  Thus, I won the pot, and busted Christoph.  I still remember the roar from the crowd surrounding the final table at Casino Baden.  Wow! There was so much screaming that I almost lost my focus.  My emotions tried to run away with me, but I told myself, “It’s not over yet.  Let everyone else celebrate.  You stay stone still and finish this thing.”

            The next hand, I won $30,000 from my lone opponent.  Again, the screaming was crazy, and included the sweet-sounding cheering from my two sister (Kerry Hellmuth and Molly Hellmuth) and my brother –in-low  (Bob Soderstrom), all of whom clearly had been enjoying the free alcohol that night-in abundance.  (My family was literally screaming something that sounded like this: ‘Yada Brada! Yada Brada! Yada Brada”).  Again, I struggled with my emotions, which wee trying to run away with me, but I remained focused and ready to win this thing.  The next hand, I won a $200,000 pot and the Poker EM.  I finally let my emotions run away with me!

starting from when four players remained, it took merely four hands.  Boom, it was over.  Ended shockingly quickly bluff.  I was feeling incredible, as I hugged my family, posed for hundred of pictures, and then drank champagne from my new trophy!  I finally found our what first place paid when they handed me a silver platter holding 1.8 million Austrian schillings (about $110,000)! How great to have some family there, to celebrate with me at the end.  How great to be lucky enough to win the Poker EM.  How great to finally finish a seven card stud tournament!


6.From The Other Side Of Table


Commerce Casino-1999



Bellagio Poker

Ladies World Championship

High Limit Action in Houston

Commerce Casino's California-1999

Party Poker Million-2002

WSOP's Winner-2002

WSOP seven card stud-2000

Foxwood's Casino

Pot-Limit Hold'em Event

World Heads-Up Poker Tour

United States Poker Championship

7.Poker Hollywood Style

Chinese Poker

Bicycle Club Casino


Celebrity Poker

Hustler Casino

8.Cheesehead Poker

Poker in Madison


Sportsmen Club

Pot-Limit Hold'em At Nora's Bar

Big Game in Wisconsin