David Chiu wins fifth WSOP bracelet

Since 2005, David Chiu had continuously come close to victory at the World Series of Poker. He made numerous final tables and was on the precipice of winning gold three times over the past seven years, but he'd devastatingly settle for three second-place results and the disappointment that it included. On Friday night in Las Vegas, second just wouldn't be good enough. Chiu topped Scott Seiver heads-up to win the $2,500 seven-card stud Event 23 and $145,520. He dedicated his win to the late Dr. Jerry Buss, who was one of the most prolific stud players over the past few decades.

This one means a lot, because there were so many tough players at the final table and because of Dr. Jerry Buss being a part of it," Chiu said after his win. "I am dedicating this gold bracelet to Dr. Jerry Buss. This is for him, because he had so much love for this game. We all miss him so much. I want to do this for him and it's why I played so hard to win."

Chiu joins an elite group of 11 with five WSOP bracelets in their career. He has $3.3 million in WSOP earnings through 57 cashes, including three this Series. However, he doesn't seem himself as a superstar, just another player among the masses.

The 246-player field is a tough number to swallow. Event 23 was the only seven-card stud event on the schedule and it shows just how far no-limit hold 'em has taken over the focus of the game. Phil Ivey, Daniel Negreanu and Phil Hellmuth were outspoken about this fact on Day 1 and appealed to the WSOP for more player influence in generating the schedule. That said, the turnout in this event probably won't help their cause.

In something rarely seen at the WSOP these days, seven of the final eight players were previous bracelet winners. Freddy Ellis, Scott Seiver, Michael Mizrachi, Frank Kassela, Gary Benson and Adam Friedman all had reached the pinnacle on the WSOP felt while the lone non-bracelet winner, Matthew Ashton, made his third final table of the Series in Event 23 with second- and third-place finishes already.

For most of the final day, it looked like Scott Seiver was destined to improve on his year that has already included a Super High Roller win at PCA, a semi-final finish in the National Heads-Up Poker Championship and four other final tables. He moved into the chip lead early on thanks to a nice pot over Benson, then pushed Chiu down the chip counts after hitting a full house. Chiu hit a big card on sixth street to eliminate Friedman in eighth to get back in contention.

Ellis knocked out Ashton in seventh and Benson in sixth and Seiver took out 2010 WSOP Player of the Year Frank Kassela in fifth at his first final table since his two-bracelet run three years ago. Mizrachi's first cash of the Series ended at Seiver's hands and Chiu eliminated Ellis to earn a slight lead into heads-up.

Chiu, backed by a great run of cards, dominated the match against Seiver, and relinquished a few small pots on his way to the title. Seiver earned $89,980, his fourth-best cash on the year.

"Everybody here was a great player, like Freddie," he said. "I hope I can play like him when I am his age (79). I enjoyed this final table a lot, with Michael, Scott, and the rest. The whole table was good. All professionals."

Other notable finishers include Mike Sexton (13th), Mike Leah (22nd) and Daniel Negreanu (26th).

Below are the complete results of Event 23 at the 2013 World Series of Poker:

Event 23: Seven-card stud
Buy-in: $2,500
Entries: 246
Prize pool: $559,650
Players in the money: 32

1. David Chiu ($145,520)
2. Scott Seiver ($89,980)
3. Freddie Ellis ($59,127)
4. Michael Mizrachi ($43,188)
5. Frank Kassela ($31,978)
6. Gary Benson ($24,003)
7. Matthew Ashton ($18,266)
8. Adam Friedman ($14,086)
9. Helmut Koch ($11,008)
10. Jesse Martin ($11,008)
11. Rocco Bucci ($8,713)
12. Kenn Wittock ($8,713)
13. Mike Sexton ($6,990)
14. Eric Brooks ($6,990)
15. Rudolf Zintel ($5,680)
16. Lavonne Joyce ($5,680)
17. Andre Akkari ($4,701)
18. Ashton Griffin ($4,701)
19. Ashly Butler ($4,701)
20. John Richardson ($4,701)
21. David Moskowitz ($4,701)
22. Mike Leah ($4,701)
23. Farshad Ben Cohen ($4,701)
24. Stephen Weiss ($4,701)
25. Bill Chen ($3,889)
26. Daniel Negreanu ($3,889)
27. Calvin Anderson ($3,889)
28. Konstantin Puchkov ($3,889)
29. Joseph Cappello ($3,889)
30. Marco Traniello ($3,889)
31. Andrey Zaichenko ($3,889)
32. Andrew Kelsall ($3,889)