Full episodes from the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event debuted on PokerGO last week, giving fans a chance to look back at Ryan Riess’ beastly performance for the first time. Over the course of six days of coverage, starting with Day 4, the field dwindles from hundreds, to nine, to a champion. There are tons of characters and personalities on display throughout the ESPN coverage, but four players from deep in the 2013 Main Event stick out and are featured in Poker Central’s first Where Are They Now? feature.
After being the first player eliminated on Day 7 in 2013, Benjamin Pollak likely thought his chances of ever reaching a WSOP Main Event final table were slim. He might have missed then, but the Frenchman made good with his next opportunity. Pollak returned to Day 7 in 2017 and advanced to the final table, before notching a 3rd place finish for $3.5 million. Since then, Pollak has continued to add big results to his resume. After the 2017 Main Event, Pollak recorded podium finishes in two High Roller events, including the $25,000 High Roller at WSOP Europe. Those scores, along with a U.S. Poker Open victory in February, have pushed Pollak near the top of France’s all-time money list with $9 million in career earnings.
Prior to Carlos Mortensen’s 10th place run in 2013, “The Matador” recorded three seven-figure scores. Since Mortensen’s 10th place run, he has cashed for over $250,000 once. That result came in the 2015 WPT World Championship, where Mortensen was looking to win a record-setting fourth World Poker Tour title. He hasn’t come close to adding any more hardware to his trophy case since, but Mortensen was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2016.
From a player that was recently inducted, to a player that should end his career in the Poker Hall of Fame. Before JC Tran finished 5th in the 2013 Main Event, the NorCal pro was a respected high stakes cash game player and two-time WSOP bracelet winner. Since, Tran has kept that high stake cash game respect and won a World Poker Tour title and a WSOP Circuit ring. He has also notched five WSOP final table appearances, with his most recent coming in last year’s $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship.
Immediately after winning the 2013 WSOP Main Event for $8.3 million, Ryan Riess declared himself the best poker player on the planet. For that brief moment, he was, but the next few years did go according to plan for Riess the Beast. That changed in 2017, when Riess cashed for nearly $2 million and added a second major championship to his tournament resume. His $10,000 WPT Seminole Hard Rock Finale win was good for $716,000 and jumpstarted a six-month stretch where Riess notched a 3rd place finish in the $10,000 Heads Up Championship at the WSOP and two final table runs in $25,000 buy-in High Rollers at WSOP Europe. Those results have pushed Riess’ career earnings near $12 million and kept Riess inside the all-time money list’s top-50.