Stan’s Lists – Most WSOP Cashes Without a Bracelet

[SS] “Who do you think is the best poker player without a WSOP bracelet?” Stan the Stat queried.

[RR] “I don’t know, but it’s probably some German player who doesn’t even play in the WSOP”, Roderick the Rock suggested.

[SS] “Among those who generally play in the WSOP then.”

[LL] “I remember when we first had this same discussion about seven years ago”, Leroy the Lion contributed. “Pretty much everyone thought Tom Dwan would quickly win a bracelet as soon as he started playing WSOP events. Didn’t happen.”1

[SS] “We were definitely biased by the pros we saw on TV. Like Gus Hansen (who won his only bracelet in Europe in 2010) and Patrik Antonius (who finished third once but hasn’t cashed since 2011).”

[RR] “There was your list of players who’d won on the WPT and EPT but not the WSOP.”

[SS] “Sure. Mohsin Charania, Moritz Kranich, Andrey Pateychuk, and Roberto Romanello. Oh, and Canadian Mike Watson joined the list this year. He’d probably get my vote from that group.”

[LL] “Some of the top WPT players are probably candidates. Chino Rheem hasn’t won a WSOP bracelet yet, right?”

[SS] “He’s a good pick. He has a record-tying three WPT bracelets and over $2.5 million in WSOP cashes, including six final tables.

A bunch of players with two WPT bracelets have been shut out on the WSOP as well. The best of those are probably Matt Giannetti, who’s made over $3.6 million at the WSOP, and Jonathan Little, who’s become famous as a trainer lately.2

And I’d also include Nam Le, who only has one WPT bracelet but has reached six final tables, which is in the top ten.”

[LL] “I suppose you have a list for us that answers the question objectively?”

[SS] “Nope… I have three.3

Most WSOP Cashes Without a Bracelet

Rank Cashes Player
1 73 Tony Cousineau
2 59 Tom McCormick
Roland Israelashvili
4 53 Shannon Shorr
Yueqi Zhu
6 50 Allen Kessler
7 45 Tom Koral
Mark Gregorich
9 44 Victor Ramdin
Nam Le

Cousineau’s total is ninth all-time! But his style is geared toward cashing; Kessler plays that way too. On this list, I like Le the best.”

[SS] “Even more frustrated are the players who’ve made many final tables without a victory…

Most WSOP Final Tables Without a Bracelet

Rank Final Tables Player
1 12 Tom McCormick
John Racener
3 11 Stephen Chidwick
Surinder Sunar
5 10 Dave Crunkleton
Mike Watson
Trai “Danny” Dang
8 9 Brian Nadell
Chad Brown
Gabriel Nassif
Ismael Bojang
Jon Turner
Kirill Gerasimov
Mark Gregorich
Stan Goldstein

Only McCormick (2nd and 1st) and Gregorich (9th and 8th) are on both lists. I’d take Watson over both of them, but McCormick is obviously a great choice too.

One player who may deserve the title of ‘Best Poker Player Who Never Won a WSOP Bracelet’ just missed this list. Jesse Alto made eight final tables back when there were many fewer events to play.

{ July 4, 2016 Update: Andrew Lichtenberger, who had made seven final tables, just won the $3,000 No Limit Hold ‘Em event on his eighth shot to stay off of this list. }

Cousineau, Minh Ly, Matthew Glantz, Shannon Shorr, and Chis Klodnicki also have reached eight final tables.

By the way, the top women are Marsha Waggoner, with 7 final tables, Esther Rossi (6), Phyllis Meyers (5), and Mimi Tran, J.J. Liu, and Karina Jett (4 each).”

[SS] “We can also look at the players who’ve won the most money at the WSOP without a bracelet; at least these players have some prize money to show for their work!

Most WSOP Winnings Without a Bracelet

Rank WSOP Earnings Player Notes
1 $11,270,518 Sam Trickett $10,112,001 from 2nd place in 2012 Big One for One Drop
2 $7,764,906 John Racener $5,545,955 from 2nd place in 2010 Main Event (also 2nd in 2014 $10,000 Seven Card Stud Split)
3 $6,501,745 Ivan Demidov $5,809,595 from 2nd place in 2008 Main Event (also 3rd in 2008 WSOP Europe Main Event)
4 $6,464,639 Paul Wasicka $6,102,499 from 2nd place in 2006 Main Event
5 $5,850,215 Jesse Sylvia $5,295,149 from 2nd place in 2012 Main Event
6 $5,512,183 Martin Staszko $5,433,086 from 2nd place in 2011 Main Event
7 $5,446,235 Joseph Cheong $4,130,049 from 3rd place in 2010 Main Event (over $5 million in non-WSOP winnings)
8 $5,366,032 Dennis Phillips $4,517,773 from 3rd place in 2008 Main Event
9 $5,871,187 Chris Klodnicki $2,985,495 from 2nd place in 2013 One Drop High Roller and $896,935 from 2nd place in 2012 Poker Players Championship (also 12th in 2008 Main Event)
10 $5,202,205 Jay Farber $5,174,357 from 2nd place in 2013 Main Event

Only Racener is also on one of the other lists, ranking second in final tables (he also has 38 cashes, just missing that list). Chris Klodnicki is the other player who didn’t get on this list by virtue of just a single big second or third place finish in a Main Event or One Drop.”


  1. Dwan was the runner-up in the $1,500 No Limit Hold ‘Em in 2010 but has no WSOP cashes since 2011.
  2. The other players with two WPT bracelets and zero WSOP bracelets are Mohsin Charania, Cornel Cimpan, Darren Elias, Randal Flowers, Alan Goehring, Marvin Rettenmaier, and Tommy Vedes.
  3. { July 3, 2016 Update } Israelashvili has tied McCormick for the second most cashes. Racener and Chidwick have tied McCormick for most final tables.

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