World Series of Poker Grudge Matches: Johnny Chan vs. Phil Hellmuth, More

Written by:
Ace King
Published on:
World Series of Poker Grudge Matches

The first ever World Series of Poker grudge matches will be held on Thursday.   These included Johnny Chan vs. Phil Hellmuth, Johnny Chan vs. Eric Seidel and Chris Moneymaker vs. Sammy Farha.  These grudge matches will allow fans to relive historic moments in poker showdowns.  The three events will air live on ESPN3.

The Johnny Chan vs. Eric Seidel matchup is iconic in that their showdown became the subject of a popular poker film “Rounders”.

Gary Wise of writes: 

The final hand, on which Chan flopped the straight and got Seidel to fire out bets on every street, was iconic before achieving immortality in "Rounders."

"I showed it to my partner, and we circled it as a great moment of defeat," "Rounders" co-writer Brian Koppelman said. "You're trying to show a crushing moment of defeat that mirrored the beginning and would foreshadow the end of the movie. When we saw it, we put it to the side knowing we would use it. It's the perfect example of the cold professional crushing the young kid."

The two will re-enact the match on ESPN3.

"I don't get too caught up in the whole 'Rounders' thing," Seidel told ESPN. "I think people recognized that it was played however many years ago, and I'm comfortable with the fact it's a match I lost. There's not a lot I can do to change that. I don't know that I would, since I like the history that's happened since then."

Seidel comes into this WSOP grudge match with eight bracelets while Chan has 10.

The Chan-Hellmuth grudge match features 21 WSOP bracelets between the two players.

Don’t expect Hellmuth to take on his “brat” persona with Chan.  The two are good friends in real life.

“We're in the same business and we're combative … competitive,” notes Chan.  “But we're also friends. I want to beat him more than Erik [Seidel]. I beat Erik but lost to Phil, so this is my chance to beat him back."

The Moneymaker-Farha matchup is historic in that Chris Moneymaker’s win helped propel the poker phenomenon that we know today.

- Ace King,

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