Phil Hellmuth

The Poker Brat

United StatesUnited States

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Phil Hellmuth, Jr. is widely recognized as one of the best tournament poker players in the world. He’s also widely recognized for being “The Poker Brat”. But despite the berating rants at the table and his non-stop complaints about bad beats or bad players, Hellmuth’s pride and joy are his 13 WSOP bracelets. Yes, that’s right, 13 gold bracelets making Phil Hellmuth's WSOP trophy collection the biggest one there is.


Apart from his big mouth and constant bragging and ranting, inside the poker community Phil Hellmuth is known as one of the best players in the history of the game and his 13 World Series of Poker trophies justify the story. Hellmuth won his first bracelet back in 1989 when he outplayed the defending champion Johnny Chan heads-up for the title and at the age of 25 became the youngest WSOP Main Event winner. Since then he scored another 12 WSOP wins and now has more bracelets than any other poker player in the world.


Hellmuth was born in Madison, Wisconsin and attended his hometown college of the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His college career was cut short though. Phil decided to drop out to focus solely on poker after building up a successful bankroll around $20,000 from playing while in school. It would only take him a few years to make his decision really pay off.

World Series of Poker

In 1989, Hellmuth captured to WSOP Main Event title as the youngest player to ever win the prestigious tournament. It wasn’t an easy road, as Hellmuth battled through a tough field of competitors with his final task being a heads-up match with two-time defending champion, Johnny Chan. Hellmuth was up to the task and successfully secured his place in WSOP history.

A one-hit wonder Hellmuth was not. Ever since big win in 1989, Phil has amassed one of the best tournament resumes around, including multiple bracelet wins in 1993 and 2003 where he won three gold pieces of WSOP jewelry and then two, respectively. By winning three in 1993, Hellmuth is one of only a few players to win that many bracelets in one year. What may be even more amazing is that when he won those bracelets, he did so on three consecutive days.

Hellmuth's World Series dominance is also represented by the biggest tournament cashout in his career - just over $2,6 million he collected in 2012 at the $1,000,000 The Big One for One Drop. Although the big payday wasn't followed by the 13th bracelet as Hellmuth finished in 4th place. The $1 million buy-in tournament was eventually won by Antonio Esfandiari, who not only took home the WSOP bracelet, but also a record-breaking cash prize of more than $18 million.

Phil Hellmuth's Top 13 WSOP Results

1989$10,000 Main Event1st$755,00
1992$5,000 Limit Hold'em1st$168,000
1993$1,500 No-Limit Hold'em1st$161,400
1993$2,500 No-Limit Hold'em1st$173,000
1993$5,000 Limit Hold'em1st$138,000
1997$3,000 Pot-Limit Hold'em1st$204,000
2001$2,000 No-Limit Hold'em1st$316,550
2003$2,500 Limit Hold'em1st$171,400
2003$3,000 No-Limit Hold'em1st$410,860
2006$1,000 No-Limit Hold'em1st$631,863
2007$1,500 No Limit Hold'em1st$637,25
2012$2,500 Seven Card Razz1st$182,793
2012WSOPE €10,000 Main Event1st€1,022,376 ($1,333,841)

World Poker Tour

Hellmuth's great tournament success doesn't end with the WSOP. He has never won a WPT event, but has numerous cashes and three final tables. Hellmuth made his first World Poker Tour cash in 2002 when he final tabled the $5,000 Championship event at the Legends of Poker in Los Angeles, although he was rewarded just a little short of $13,000. Since then Hellmuth cashed in three more WPT events until in November 2003 he collected his biggest cash of the circuit, $281,700 for the third place at the World Poker Finals WPT Event. Hellmuth holds a total record of four WPT final tables and thirteen money finishes.

Phil Hellmuth's Top 5 WPT Results

2003World Poker Finals $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em WPT Event3rd$281,700
200249'er Gold Rush Bonanza $3,000 Main Event4th$34,000
2008L.A. Poker Classic $9,900 Championship Event6th$229,820
2010Bay 101 Shooting Stars $9,600 Championship Event6th$117,000
2010Five Star World Poker Classic $25,000 Championship Event7th$152,856

Other Achievements

Hellmuth also holds a win in the National Heads-Up Poker Championship as well as a couple of wins on the late-night television show Poker After Dark. He’s also made a few appearances on High Stakes Poker throughout the years.


Phil Hellmuth was one of the creators of the UltimateBet Poker's online poker software. He was also a member of the site's pro team and represented UltimateBet in live events, advertising campaigns and online tournaments.

Did you know?

  • Off the felt, Hellmuth has made several instructional poker videos and authored quite a few poker books including Phil Hellmuth's Texas Hold 'Em, Bad Beats and Lucky Draws: Poker Strategies, Winning Hands, and Stories from the Professional Poker Tour, and Play Poker Like the Pros.
  • Since 2007 Phil Hellmuth made a couple of memorable WSOP entrances. The first time he appeared at the Rio dressed as race car driver, then he showed up as a General Patton, Caesar, and the MMA fighter.

Covered Events

Event Place Prize
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #61: $10,000 Seven-Card Stud Championship
6th $46,885
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #49: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em
35th $18,318
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #47: $1,500 Ante-Only No-Limit Hold'em
30th $5,397
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #36: $1,500 No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball
18th $3,471
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #26: $1,500 No-Limit Hold'em
29th $9,877
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #15: $3,000 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold'em
8th $45,022
2014 World Series of Poker
Event #7: $1,500 Seven-Card Razz
2nd $74,848
2012 World Series of Poker Europe
Event #7: €10,450 No-Limit Hold'em Main Event
1st €1,022,376
2012 World Series of Poker Europe
Event #5: €10,450 Mixed Max - No-Limit Hold'em
12th €20,443
2012 World Series of Poker Europe
Event #4: €3,250 No-Limit Hold'em Shootout
12th €5,428
2012 World Series of Poker Europe
Event #1: €2,700 Six-Handed No-Limit Hold'em
24th €4,887
2010 World Series of Poker
Event #55: $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha Championship
15th $39,906
2010 World Series of Poker
Event #41: $1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha Hi-low Split-8 or Better
7th $30,633
2010 World Series of Poker
Event #17: $5,000 No-Limit Hold'em
50th $14,517
2010 World Series of Poker
Event #8: $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em
15th $25,472