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Gossip Column: Phil Hellmuth Makes Peace With James Campbell & Adrian Soren Banned From WSOP For Racially Abusing Maurice Hawkins

PokerGuru Gossip Column: Phil Hellmuth Makes Peace With James Campbell & Adrian Soren Banned From WSOP For Racially Abusing Maurice Hawkins
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  • PG News July 11, 2018
  • 8 mins Read

The drama at the 2018 World Series of Poker (WSOP) is endless. In this edition of the PokerGuru Gossip Column, we bring you to truly shocking incidents that happened on the felts at the ongoing WSOP. In out first story we have Phil ‘Poker Brat’ Hellmuth, who showed us his bratty behaviour once again when he began ranting at a fellow Main Event tablemate James Campbell that eventually resulted in the latter’s elimination. Hellmuth eventually offered him a Main Event seat for WSOP 2019 to make amends which was accepted.

In the second and last story, African-American player Maurice Hawkins claimed that he was racial abused by Romanian-Italian player Adrian Soren who was thereafter disqualified by the WSOP Tournament Director Jack Eiffel and subsequently banned from the rest of the tournament series.

As the chaos and tension continues, lets delve into the juicy gossip!

Phil Hellmuth Offers An Olive Branch to James Campbell Through 2019 Main Event Seat

The 14-time WSOP bracelet winner Phil Hellmuth is quite a character indeed! Whether its showing up late to tournaments, selling his action at steep mark-ups or making dramatic entrances, the ‘Poker Brat’ does not fail to amuse his fan base. However, the latest controversy that he was embroiled in, seems to have irked his followers more than usual.

Phil Hellmuth
Phil Hellmuth

During Day 2C of the WSOP Main Event World Championship, Hellmuth was in a three-way hand that included Alex Kuzmin and James “Camby” Campbell. With the blinds at 800/1,600/200, Kuzmin raised 3,200 from middle position holding and Hellmuth flat-called from the cutoff with pocket sevens. Campbell, who was short-stacked, also called with @1d from the small blind. After the flop :10s was dealt, Campbell checked, Kuzmin continued for 3,000 and Hellmuth snap min-raised to 6,000. Thereafter, Campbell moved all-in for 26,200. But before Kuzmin could act, Hellmuth viciously spoke out, “This mother f***ing guy … f***cking got away with murder all day against me. How in the f*** does this happen?”

After Hellmuth quietened down, Kuzmin called and Hellmuth folded. With the turn bringing , Kuzmin found a pair of deuces and the river missed both players, resulting in Campbell’s elimination.

Hellmuth’s uncalled for verbal spat was heavily criticized by Shaun Deeb, who was commentating the final table.

“This is so wrong by Phil. This is where Phil deserves penalties. You cannot talk in a multi-way pot and give away your weakness with an opponent still to act. It’s so wrong he gets away with stuff like this. If I’m sitting with a king-high flush draw I know that Phil is not continuing if I call. That totally affects this action and totally hurts his opponent’s equity.”

Campbell posted his view on the incident on Twitter.

Hellmuth responded to the tweet while expressing his apologies.

Many players took to Twitter to discuss the incident and Hellmuth’s past antics.

Campbell spoke to PokerNews regarding the incident and stated, “I think he deserved a penalty for sure and I think only because he was Phil Helmuth he got away with it with the floor standing right behind us. I was very upset at the time but I didn’t want to give away any information as to the strength of my hand. If I had won the hand, Phil would have got a piece of my mind. Busting the main sucks so at that point I thought it was better I left without getting into it with him when I was very upset about the situation.”

He added, “As far as rectifying the situation the WSOP should have at least addressed the issue. Phil knows the truth as far as actions affecting the hand. His ego gets in the way of his sense a lot of times including this time so of course he tried justifying his actions instead of admitting his mistake. He was 100% folding as the whole world saw that on the live stream and therefore his antics gave the Russian a great price on gambling with a flush draw knowing that Phil was never raising and always folding. The whole situation is really messed up. It cost me my WSOP main event and a chance at spinning up my stack Day 3.”

Hellmuth responded to the reaction by missing out on the first hour of play at the Main Event on Day 3.

He even explained his outburst and apologised for the same on the YouTube channel pokernewsdotcom.

On July 8, as a show of goodwill, Hellmuth offered to buy Campbell’s entry into the 2019 WSOP Main Event.

Campbell appreciated the gesture and accepted the offer.

Maurice Hawkins Suffers Racial Abuse At WSOP, Offender Banned

In the sidelines of the spellbinding action on the WSOP felts is high drama and incidents that can only be termed as shocking to say the least. Another such incident involving African American player Maurice Hawkins who was reportedly subjected to racial slur during a bust out hand in a WSOP event grabbed attention recently and has the Twitterati talking about what really happened.

Maurice Hawkins
Maurice Hawkins

Even as the tournament director adopted the ‘no-tolerance’ policy and outrightly banned the Romanian-Italian player Adrian Soren from other upcoming events, doubts started floating around on whether the player really meant to abuse Hawkins or was it a cultural and lingual difference that was wrongly interpreted.

It was during a $1,500 side event where the incident occurred. Hawkins and Soren ended up in a pot together and by the end of it Soren beat Hawkins. While collecting the chips, Soren said to Hawkins, “Thank you,” after which followed an exchange of words between the two where Hawkins claimed that Soren said “what’s up?” though Soren claimed he had said “Shut up”. There was the use of the ‘N’ word by Soren during the chat and that’s when things went downhill.

On this, Soren received a penalty where he had to leave the table for a couple of rounds and was blinded out.

The following day when he returned to the WSOP, he was confronted by Tournament Director Jack Eiffel who disqualified him from the event and banned him from all Caesar’s properties.

Hawkins narrated the incident on his Twitter handle, later thanking the WSOP for their quick reaction to the incident.

Poker commentator and Vlogger Doug Polk also talked about the incident.

Well that’s it for this edition folks! We’ll be back soon with more spicy and sensational news. Stay tuned!

Related Articles:

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2. PokerGuru Gossip Column: Vanessa Selbst Berates Loren Klein Over MAGA Hat & Drunk Stuart Rutter Misbehaves With Phil Hellmuth

3. PokerGuru Gossip Column: Bill Jordanou Pleads Guilty to Ponzi Scheme, Maurice Hawkins Settles Staking Dispute

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