Dennis Phillips In-Depth: 2008 WSOP Main Event Leader

When the 2008 WSOP Main Event was whittled from 6,844 participants to the final ‘November Nine’, the anticipation to unveil a champion emanated from the rafters of the Rio Casino’s Amazon Room. So, whilst we wait out the agonizing 117-day break until the final table actually occurs, let’s take an in-depth look at the current 2008 WSOP Main Event chip leader, Dennis Phillips.


Passing the time with confidence, current leader Dennis Phillips holds the largest stack with 26,295,000 chips in his corner, nearly 2 million higher than his closest rival, Ivan Demidov at 24,400,000. But how did Phillips, an amateur poker player from Cottage Hills, Illinois, earn such a prestigious position in the most influential live tournament of our time?


Apparently the televised broadcast has done even more for the poker gaming community than we had previously realized, having brought the sport back into the limelight in such a fashion that even poker enthusiasts who’ve never cashed in a live tournament have attained astounding skills for the game; enough to rival those of the professional poker players we’ve come to expect such spectacular performances from.


Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Dennis Phillips is a 53-year-old account manager for the Broadway Truck Centers trucking company. Phillips only took up the game of poker four years ago, as a mere hobby more than anything else. He has been spending a good deal of time earning frequent cashes at the local Harrah’s Casino in St. Louis, and one particular win has brought him further than he could have ever imagined.


Handing over the $200 buy-in to a Satellite tournament at Harrah’s, Dennis Phillips battled some of the toughest poker players in the region, finally taking down the 2006 WSOP Main Event final tablist Dan Nassif in heads-up action to win a seat in this year’s WSOP Main Event.


As far as previous WSOP tournaments are concerned, Dennis Phillips had only cashed in two events, both being WSOP Circuits held in the nearby city of Robinsonville. On September 7, 2007, Phillips bought into a WSOP Circuit NL Hold’em tournament at the Grand Casino Tunica for $550, finishing in 9th place for $2,386. Only two days later, Dennis reinvested his winnings for another $550 buy-in, this time taking 7th place for $2,192.


Now finding himself holding the largest chip stack at the one and only World Series of Poker Main Event, Dennis Phillips couldn’t be more pleased with his performance. Phillips stated that he couldn’t have been more calm as he offered a perfect poker face, staring into the eyes of his strong-willed competitors while the final three tables took place.


According to Phillips, as he went ever deeper into the WSOP Main Event, he resisted numerous offers from online poker companies, making every effort to get him to don their logos. Full Tilt Poker offered a large sum to Phillips simply to wear a Full Tilt Poker cap backwards, but Phillips declined, preferring the bright red cap depicting his favorite St. Louis Cardinals baseball team. Another offer came for him to wear a logo T-shirt, but again, Phillips rejected, choosing to keep his own shirt displaying his employment company logo, Broadway Truck Centers. “Those are my friends. I’m not going to do that to them.” Eventually, PokerStars was able to convince Dennis to wear a logo patch on his company shirt, as well as another on the side of his red baseball cap.


One lingering question that had to be on the minds of Phillips co-workers and employers had to be, “Is Dennis Phillips going to retire?”


Phillips cleared that question up immediately as the media swarmed in his direction upon discovery of the November Nine. He stated that he will not retire, and will be back to work Thursday. Of course, Phillips may not quite realize the fate in store for him, as the immaculately skilled poker player will be returning a home town hero and local celebrity; his face already plastered across the St. Louis Today newspaper.


Dennis Phillips is a modest man; not one easily lured by the camera lights. He didn’t even bother to tell his friends that he had won a seat in the 2008 WSOP Main Event until weeks later, and even then required a few drinks to spill the beans.


As much as the world wishes to see a winner crowned, it will unfortunately be another 116 days – Final Table Day 1 and 2, after a 117 day break from the end of the final table setting – before a true winner shall emerge, claiming the coveted WSOP Bracelet and Championship title, along with about $9.2 million.


When asked why the WSOP determined it necessary to invoke such a long delay before the WSOP Main Event Final Table, WSOP Commissioner Jeffrey Pollack replied, “Now fans will ask ‘who will win’ our coveted championship bracelet and millions of dollars instead of ‘Who won? The excitement and interest that will surround our final nine players will be unprecedented.”

Up To $3,000 in Bonuses! Play Now
100% up to $3,000 Bonus

Bovada is our most recommended ONLINE CASINO and POKER ROOM for US players with excellent deposit options. Get your 100% signup bonus today.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply