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Klein wins third WSOP bracelet in three years

27 Jun 2018

Loren Klein

Loren Klein (photo by WSOP)

Name: Loren Klein
Nationality: American
Birthplace: Michigan
Current Residence: Reno, NV
Age: 36
Profession: Professional poker player
Number of WSOP Cashes: 32
Number of WSOP Final Table Appearances: 8
Number of WSOP Gold Bracelet Victories (with this tournament): 3
Best Previous WSOP Finish: 1st in 2017 $1,500 PLO for $231,483
Total WSOP Earnings: $2,490,795

Loren Klein made World Series of Poker history on Tuesday evening. Klein joined Allen Cunningham and Matt Matros as the only players to win a bracelet in three consecutive summers in the post-Moneymaker era.

Klein won the biggest $10,000 pot-limit Omaha championship in the history of the WSOP. The eight-handed event drew 476 entries and Klein took home $1,018,336 for his third WSOP win.

“It’s time to get my annual bracelet,” joked Klein to his friends on the rail after his win.

Despite the positive results over the last three summers, Klein downplayed his accomplishment and chalked it up to good old-fashioned rungood.

“Not a ton,” said Klein. “The variance in getting a bracelet is pretty wild. Like, I was the same player I was three years ago before I had any bracelets.”

Over the last three summers, Klein showed his dominance in the game of pot-limit Omaha. His first bracelet came in a no-limit hold’em/pot-limit Omaha mixed event and his second two came in standalone pot-limit Omaha tournaments. Last year, he won a $1,500 and this year he won the championship event.

His results would indicate that he’s one of the best players in the world at the game. The northern Nevada resident downplayed that idea as well.

“Perhaps, but you’ll never know because of the way tournaments go,” said Klein. “There’s a lot of guys that make good runs all the time. So, I’m probably right there with them. But who knows?”

The 36-year-old poker pro came up through the ranks with some of the best poker players in the game. He came up discussing hands with top pros bracelet winners Chance Kornuth, Ben Lamb and Johnny Beauprez. All which have been extremely successful in the game of pot-limit Omaha.

“There was a lot of collaboration back then,” said Klein. “I think Ben played PLO maybe before us, but it was all around the same time.”

Klein returned for the final day of play on Tuesday third in chips of the final six. They reached the eight-handed final table on Monday evening. Alexey Makarov busted in eighth and Mike Leah hit the rail in seventh, leaving the final six players to come back on Tuesday to play down to a winner on the live stream.

Brandon Shack-Harris started the final table with the chip lead but lost it very early to Klein. Klein flopped top two pair, called a flop bet, checked back the turn and made a big river bet when checked to. Shack-Harris called the river and mucked. Klein took the chip lead and was never in danger of busting again.

“That took him out of a pretty commanding position,” said Klein. “It was an important pot for sure and I was pretty selective about which one I was going to do because I knew the first pot I played with him was going to be a big deal and change the dynamics. I got lucky and flopped it.”

From there, Klein went on to eliminate Scott Bohlman in sixth and Ryan Hughes in fifth. Bohlman busted when they basically got all in preflop with Klein’s hand against Bohlman’s.

They got the last couple of chips into the middle on the flop with Bohlman in the lead, but Klein hit runners to make a straight and eliminate Bohlman in sixth. It was the start of several good things to come for Klein, who moved into second in chips behind Shack-Harris.

Klein eliminated Hughes in fifth when they got all in preflop with Hughes’ hand against Klein’s. Klein spiked a jack on the flop and faded running straight cards or an ace to send Hughes home in fifth, leaving the table four-handed.

A couple hands later, the two short stacks four-handed clashed, and it resulted in Jerry Wong busting in fourth. On the flop, Wong got involved for all of his chips against Shack-Harris. Shack-Harris flopped the nut straight and Wong was drawing thin after flopping a pair of deuces and backdoor hearts.

Wong was dead on the turn, leaving Klein three-handed with Shack-Harris and Rep Porter, a final three that already had a combined seven bracelets before Tuesday’s action.

Shack-Harris held on for about an hour before he busted to Rep Porter. The Chicago native’s hand ran into Porter’s. Porter’s aces held up and Shack-Harris finished just a couple spots shy of his third pot-limit Omaha bracelet.

Klein started heads-up play with the chip lead and expanded it early on. Eventually, a cold deck ended the tournament when Klein’s hand bested Porter’s.

The board ran out clean and Klein shipped his third bracelet, his biggest career score and his first bracelet in a $10,000 buy-in. When asked if this bracelet felt a little different than the first, his response was short and to the point.

“Seven figures.”

Final table results
1st: Loren Klein - $1,018,336
2nd: Rep Porter - $629,378
3rd: Brandon Shack-Harris - $433,259
4th: Jerry Wong - $303,491
5th: Ryan Hughes - $216,391
6th: Scott Bohlman - $157,097
7th: Mike Leah - $116,166
8th: Alexey Makarov - $87,522

(Article courtesy of World Series of Poker)
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