Joseph Hebert took down the U.S. portion of the World Series of Poker Main Event on Monday evening, winning a $1,553,256 first-place prize. Hebert will now get to challenge Damian Salas for the Heads-Up Championship for the WSOP Main Event bracelet and an extra $1 million winner-take-all prize.
The final was originally set for December 30th, but because Damian Salas was denied entry into the U.S. due to being in Europe in mid-December, the event is now being postponed until January 3rd.
Hebert entered the final table as the chip leader and was able to hold on as seven other players dropped off, all winning prizes of at least $125,885.
After his big win, Hebert dedicated the victory to his mother, who passed last summer. Hebert sat down with Sarah Herring in the WSOP’s press room to discuss the final table and the victory. You can watch it below in its entirety beginning at the 5 hour and 52 minute mark.
What did we learn from the interview?
Hebert is a likable part-time poker player who has an interesting story to tell, that will undoubtedly be featured heavily on the ESPN broadcast of the event. Here were some things poker fans learned about him in his post-game match.
1) Hebert won the event for his late mother
Hebert’s mother passed away over the summer, inspiring him to play for his mother and creating the #ForLinda hastag.
2) Joseph Hebert’s name is pronounced Hey-bear
While on the final table, Hebert sported a t-shirt with a bear that served as a reminder of his namesake.
3) Despite coming into the final table as a chip leader, Hebert found the pressure “overwhelming.”
“When I sat down, I was a little uncomfortable with the whole scenario. I play live a lot, but it’s just with the lights and camera – the essence of the World Series of Poker Main Event.” While holding the chip lead going into the final table, Hebert said everyone assumes you are expected to win.
4) Hebert thinks he is a better live player than online
“I like to be able to pick up tells,” said Hebert before noting the transition in the tournament was difficult. “Just having the chip difference was crazy.”
5) Hebert knew hardly anything of his opponents
In a normal World Series of Poker Main Event, Hebert would have had days of face to face action with his opponents. In this year’s World Series of Poker, that was not an option, so he only had hand histories to go by. He will also go into his heads-up match with Damian Salas with little information. “I don’t really know much about Damian. I’ll read up on him a little bit more.”
6) He already has plans for his new-found wealth
He told Herring “I definitely want to get my dad a new car because he’s been there for me. The rock, through everything I have ever been through. My mom would want that.” He also promised his son a special bird if he won.
Hebert meets Salas on January 3rd
Now that the U.S. and International portions of the 2020 World Series of Poker events are in the books, Hebert and Damian Salas will now meet for the Heads-Up Championship on January 3rd from the Rio All Suites Hotel and Casino for the bracelet as well as $1 million dollars. Just as they did for the final table, ESPN will record the broadcast and air it at a later date.