The 2017 World Series of Poker – which was exclusively streamed on PokerGO – is in the rearview and players have had some time to recover and reflect on the Series. Ben Yu had the best Series of his career – he won his second bracelet, crossed over the $1 million mark in WSOP earnings and contended for WSOP Player of the Year.
Yu isn’t your typical poker player – he’s soft spoken, humble and dresses to the nines. He was the top scoring player in Daniel Negreanu’s $25,000 Fantasy League with 287 points and propelled Team Leah to the overall win.
The WSOP POY race in Las Vegas ended with Yu in sixth place while being the overall top points scorer in Negreanu’s $25k Fantasy League, and we had to know which he was more proud. “I’m not a wear-my-accomplishment-on-my-sleeve guy, but $25k fantasy scorer,” Yu said. “I don’t feel fully comfortable having an extended conversation about the win when people congratulate me. So, it’s easier to shift the focus to them and talk about what fantasy sweats people have of me.”
Yu had a week-long stretch in mid-June after winning the $10,000 Deuce to Seven Triple Draw event where he earned nearly $350,000. He finished fourth in the Limit Hold’em Championship, cashed in 40th place in the Six-Max No Limit Hold’em Championship and finally cashed in a $1,500 Pot Limit Omaha Hi/Lo event.
“It was quite a blur,” Yu said. “I didn’t feel great going into the Triple Draw as I went to EDC the night before. Even though I was responsible and only had two beers, I was up until sunrise. When I registered, I remember thinking, ‘I’m a bit above the point where I feel irresponsible not feeling better and playing this, but not by much.’”
Ben Yu kissing his second bracelet with time to host a proper party. (Photo: PokerPhotoArchive.com)
“By the end of the run, I was pumped on adrenaline and too excited to sleep well for a whole week,” he said. “I understand better now how exhausted people get when they go deep in the Main and how they can be prone to making mistakes.”
“The Limit Hold’em Championship was the most fun,” Yu said. “I was basking in the afterglow , got to celebrate and reinforced it all by running very pure immediately afterwards – all on the same night.”
Yu joked, “Two years I punted by not winning the bracelet fast enough and could only muster together an hour-long party at the bar in the hallway before I had to max-late register the $10,000 PLO Championship.”
“This year I learned from my mistake and made sure to close quickly so we could celebrate at a proper bar, he said. “I came back in time to register the Limit Hold’em at midnight and bagged the chip lead despite only playing two hours.”
“It felt surreal to be running that well,” Yu added. “Each time I posted chip count updates for my friends, they kept responding ‘LOL this is absurd.’”