Is Phil Hellmuth the Same Player this Year?

There are many people who can lay claim to being the best poker player in the world.  After all, it’s hard to really determine anything as the best measuring stick when comparing players.  Some people prefer to point towards the ones that play in Bobby’s Room at the Bellagio as some of the best players in the world since they consistently play for the biggest stakes.  And if you’re going to use this as the measuring stick then most would say Phil Ivey is the best.

However, others like to point towards live tournaments as the favored way to tell how talented a player is.  And if this is the case, then Phil Hellmuth and his 11 WSOP bracelets by be considered the way to go.  After all, a gold WSOP bracelet is pretty much the top prize one could hope to win in any tournament (besides the money of course). 

But this year, it almost seems like Phil Hellmuth has played a little off from previous campaigns.  And that’s a hard thing to say since Hellmuth just recently took third in the $1,500 H.O.R.S.E. tournament.  But as much as people have come to expect from him, it doesn’t seem like he’s been as dominant a tournament player in 2008. 

In his previous years of playing poker, Hellmuth was a constant threat to cash in every event he entered.  And he often did at least cash, if not make the final table and/or win the tournament he was playing in.  But this year I’ve seen him sent to the rail plenty of times during the early going of a tournament.  Many times he hasn’t even made it past the 1st day. 

Now he may make me eat my words and go out and win bracelet #13 in these last few events but I don’t see it happening this year.  I’m sure we’ll see a revival of the Poker Brat since he’s got plenty of years ahead of him but don’t expect it to take place anytime soon. 

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