Ren Lin Finds Redemption, $1 Million in WPT Alpha8 at Wynn Las Vegas

After Ren Lin’s run in the WPT World Championship fell apart late in the event, Lin turned around and won the WPT Alpha8 at Wynn Las Vegas for over $1 million. He defeated Jason Koon heads-up to finish it off.

Tim Fiorvanti
Dec 22, 2023
Ren Lin earned his first career seven-figure cash and the WPT Alpha8 at Wynn Las Vegas title Thursday night.

Ren Lin was riding high on Day 4 of the 2023 WPT World Championship Monday. He finished the night third in chips, part of a densely packed top group with just 45 players remaining. The final table was in sight, along with the $5.6 million first-place prize.

But then Lin started to feel a little under the weather. He took some medication to try to alleviate some of the symptoms ahead of Day 5 of the tournament, and then disaster struck.

“With 33 players left, I still had two times the average chips,” said Lin. “So I think maybe I can make a final table, but that day I ate the wrong medicine – nighttime instead of daytime, and it made me sleepy all day.”

Lin would go on to be eliminated in 20th place, collecting a $236,300 payday – not a bad run by any means, but shy of the kind of money and accolades he’s after. After collecting himself, Lin registered for the $50,000 Alpha8 at Wynn Las Vegas event late in the day Wednesday, bagged up chips, and set himself up for one more shot at something big on this trip to Las Vegas.

And that’s exactly what he got. After surviving the money bubble early in the day, Lin went on a run and rode it all the way to the title. In addition to the most significant live poker title of his career, Lin won $1,045,781 – the largest single prize of his poker career.

To complete the victory, Lin went head-to-head with Jason Koon, the No. 3 player on poker’s all-time money list and a player that Lin has quite a lot of respect for.

“You know, Jason Koon, he’s my idol,” said Lin. “I think he’s my favorite player in the world. I just can’t believe I can beat him. I got a lot of good hands heads up, and I did get lucky. But I beat him.”

Lin’s victory in WPT Alpha8 at Wynn Las Vegas caps off a career year in which Lin won over $6.6 million across a strong slate of results. In addition to his first career U.S. Poker Open victory in March, Lin finished second or third in a variety of major events, including a $25,000 High Roller at the 2023 PokerStars Players Championship, the $26,650 GG Millions at Triton Monte Carlo and the $50,000 Diamond High Roller at WSOP Europe.

Final Results – 2023 WPT Alpha8 At Wynn Las Vegas

  1. Ren Lin – $1,045,781
  2. Jason Koon – $669,300
  3. Martin Kabrhel – $468,510
  4. Biao Ding – $334,650
  5. Seth Davies – $249,314
  6. Nikita Kuznetsov – $192,424
  7. Brad Owen – $152,266
  8. Isaac Haxton – $125,494
  9. Justin Bonomo – $108,761