Gordon Vayo might not have a World Series of Poker bracelet on his resume, but he comes into the final table of this year’s Main Event as one of the favorites. The San Francisco native and poker pro will begin the action third in chips (49,375,000), about 25 million behind the chip leader, Cliff Josephy.
Josephy has to be seen as the ultimate favorite at this point, partly because of his chip lead, but also because he’s the only one of the nonet to win a WSOP event (which he’s done twice). He also has the most career WSOP earnings among the field ($810,358).
That said, Vayo isn’t far behind ($608,136 lifetime WSOP earnings) and, at 27, is nearly a quarter of a decade younger than Josephy (51). He also has the most career WSOP cashes among the final table qualifiers with 26 (compared to 22 for Josephy).
Reaching the final table of the Main Event is a fitting conclusion to a successful year for the youngster. According to WSOP.com, Vayo cashed in eight of the 21 WSOP events he played this year. That’s a solid .380 batting average for those keeping score at home.
He hasn’t had a 100K score since 2014, though, when he took home just over $300,000 for his runner-up finish at Event #15: No-Limit Hold’em 6-Handed.
Like many from his generation, Vayo (aka “holla@yoboy”) got his start online, racking up over a $1 million before turning his attention to the live scene.
While Vayo is in a good spot entering the final table, he’s very fortunate to be so positioned. In an interview with PokerListings, he described going all-in preflop with AK, only to find himself up against pocket rockets. He was able to out-draw the aces and double-up with fewer than 40 players left in the field.
The ten-year pro will be hoping that kind of luck stays with him when he takes his spot in seat 7 at the final table, which commences on Oct. 30.
Other November Nine profiles:
(Photo credit: flipchip [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.)
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