WSOP 2016: Mercier makes it four
You have to wonder if the game is up for Jason Mercier. Two weeks ago he took to Twitter to lay down the gauntlet.
Looking to get 3 to 1 on winning a bracelet this Wsop (Vegas only) any takers? Lmk, will need escrow / post if I don't know u well etc— Jason Mercier (@JasonMercier) May 31, 2016
There is was. Take him on at 3-to-1. All you had to do was hope he dodged WSOP silverware. I dare say some took him up on it. Others though will have baulked, and if asked why knew exactly their reasons, which the former group, to their expense, discovered in the early hours of this morning.
For that's when Jason Mercier won his fourth career World Series bracelet, winning the 2-7 Lowball Championship under the lights of the main stage. Mercier may never get to make such bets ever again.
We can't really say we are surprised. As eye witnesses of every step of Mercier's career ascendance, starting with that EPT Sanremo win back in 2008, each landmark he has achievement unlocked has only confirmed our own suspicion that he is among the most gifted players ever to play the game.
His results transcend event, country, or even the game being played.
At the World Series his first two bracelets, coming as they did in 2009 and 2011, were in pot-limit Omaha. Last year (after he claimed to be having the worst spell of his career) he hit hold'em gold. Now, 2-7 Lowball. If there is a Go Fish bracelet up for grabs this summer Mercier must now be the clear favourite.
For the record, this latest bracelet, collected in the company of his girlfriend, and his pet dog (a first for a WSOP winner's photo), was worth $273,335. But it can hardly be about the money to a man who has amassed more than $3 million at the WSOP alone (from career tournaments earnings in excess of $16 million).
To Mercier it is about something else, something he hinted at after his second bracelet win almost exactly five years ago.
"It's important to me for people to think I am one of the best," said Mercier. "I think I am getting to that level, if I am not already there. Obviously, winning tournaments and winning WSOP bracelets just adds to that. I feel like if I win a third one, it will do even more for me. I'm ready to play in as many World Series of Poker events as I can to get as many gold bracelets as I can."
Mercier is only doing what he said he do, a warning that the 3-to-1 takers might now wish they'd heeded. Regardless, the payoff is ours as well as Mercier's - the continual ascent of one of poker's most brilliant stars taking place before us, and showing no sign of abating.
Congratulations to Jason on this latest triumph. For everyone else, be cautious of what odds he offers next. He's currently sixth in chips from 46 left in the 7 Card Razz Championship event by the way.
Number five anyone?
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WSOP Photos by PokerPhotoArchive.com
Stephen Bartley is a staff writer for the PokerStars Blog.