11 Finest Poker Gamers Ever – Poker Fortress

The best poker players that ever lived.

A battle to be the king of the felt occurs so quick that we regularly solely understand every participant’s genius after reviewing the sport. That’s why we solely rank poker gamers based mostly on how a lot we like a participant’s persona, their complete earnings, and stats.

Daniel Negreanu, Phil Ivey, and Phil Hellmuth are three of essentially the most infamous gamers on the felt. Nonetheless, if we rank poker gamers based mostly on complete earnings, solely Negreanu will get into the highest 10. Some gamers like Daniel Colman and Jason Koon made some huge cash however aren’t within the Corridor of Fame.

There’s a number of elements that we have now to contemplate when rating the perfect poker gamers. It may be subjective and open for opinions with a number of room for disagreements and debates as to who deserves the highest spot. We’ll give you essentially the most complete listing of the perfect poker gamers, together with a bonus listing that ranks them based mostly on complete earnings.

Possibly taken with a extra private on a regular basis life {of professional} poker gamers? Then an article about the perfect poker vloggers and their youtube channels would be the greatest learn.

The best poker players that ever lived.Who’re the perfect poker gamers of all occasions?

Johnny Moss – The Grand Previous Man of Poker

Johnny Moss is, maybe, a reputation you’re not conscious of as a result of his reign as the most effective poker gamers began lengthy earlier than poker video games hit the mainstream. He had a complete of solely $834,422 in WSOP winnings, which can not appear so much in right now’s requirements, however this man was the primary individual to win the WSOP Most important Occasion in 1970!

There’s no solution to examine him with different gamers that we’re apt to see today. However he gained two championships on the present event format that we see in WSOP Most important Occasions in 1971 and 1974. From 1970 to 1995, he managed to win 9 WSOP bracelets and three WSOP Most important Occasions. Johnny Moss is a poker champion for a 3rd of his profession and #3 on the listing of gamers with essentially the most variety of WSOP bracelets.

Legend has it that throughout the first-ever WSOP, Benny Binion requested each participant who they suppose is the perfect participant within the event. All of them voted for themselves, which isn’t what Binion supposed. After that, he performed one other ballot to ask each participant who they suppose is the second-best participant—most of them voted for Johnny Moss.

Johhny Moss retired earlier than profitable 3 WSOP world titles

The whole quantity gained isn’t an element that we thought of to have him on this listing as a result of he’s profitable all of it even earlier than the poker increase. He was a dominating pressure again then, and most gamers right now nonetheless can’t match his achievements in poker. That’s why Moss stays the most effective poker gamers to have ever hit the felt.

Phil Hellmuth – The Poker Brat

Phil Hellmuth’s robust persona on the felt isn’t one thing that many individuals admire, however his achievements converse for his expertise as a poker participant. He’s the one individual on the earth with 15 WSOP bracelets; the #2 on that listing is a tie between Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan, and Phil Ivey, at 10.

Throughout the 1993 World Collection of Poker, he formally grew to become the second individual in WSOP historical past to have gained 3 bracelets in a single WSOP occasion that got here in three consecutive days. He’s had 57 last desk appearances, and 154 cash finishes in WSOP tournaments. Hellmuth is the one individual on the earth to win WSOP and WSOPE Most important Occasions. He gained the WSOP Most important Occasion in 1989, then WSOPE Most important Occasion in 2012.

Finest Phil Hellmuth’s Poker Unhealthy Beats & Blow Up Moments!

Apart from his spectacular WSOP efficiency, Hellmuth additionally had 5 last desk appearances within the World Poker Tour. He additionally got here near profitable the Champions Cup when he completed first-runner up on the Legends of Poker in Bicycle On line casino.

His ebook Poker Brat: Phil Hellmuth’s Autobiography, will provide you with a walkthrough on his life. It contains all of the struggles and successes that he went by to turn out to be one of many world’s most recognizable poker gamers.

You might not be a fan, however we are able to’t deny that Phil Hellmuth stays one of many hardest gamers with ingenious insights into the sport.

Doyle Brunson – Texas Dolly

On the age of 85, it’s stunning and entertaining to observe Doyle Brunson battle wits towards a few of right now’s greatest poker minds. In 2018, he even made it to the WSOP last desk. He’s the oldest poker participant to win the World Poker Tour occasion, and even gained the Legends of Poker in Bicycle On line casino on the age of 71! 

Doyle Brunson holds the #2 spot for many WSOP bracelets, tied with Johnny Chan and Phil Ivey. He additionally gained back-to-back WSOP Most important Occasions in 1976 and 1977, then joined the Poker Corridor of Fame in 1988. Brunson is an everyday in televised money video games with 26 WSOP last desk appearances. Regardless of his spectacular profession run, he’s solely amassed a complete of $2,994,116 in event winnings.


Doyle Brunson steamrolling the desk.

Near $3 million in event winnings might not be one thing that’ll get you excited, however he’s additionally performed a few of the largest money video games. All through his profession that spans 50 years, he’s turn out to be an everyday in nearly each televised poker event.

Apart from being a dominant participant that stood the check of time, Brunson additionally authored two of the best-selling poker books: Tremendous/System: A Course in Energy Poker, then adopted by Tremendous System 2. Each books function a method information for aspiring poker gamers that’ll help you decide the methods of a few of the greatest poker gamers right now, together with Phil Hellmuth, Daniel Negreanu, and Johnny Chan.

Stu Ungar – The Comeback Child

Stu Ungar was one of many best poker gamers to have ever lived.

His story goes down in historical past as one of many wasted abilities introduced down by varied challenges in life. Everybody he’s ever performed with him remembers “Stuey” because the participant with the sixth sense for playing cards. He’ll show ruthless aggression when on the felt, and he gained’t hesitate to run down his opponents who confirmed weak spot.

He’s the one poker participant to have ever gained the Tremendous Bowl of Poker, the second most prestigious poker event within the Nineteen Eighties, 3 times. Stu additionally managed to be one of many solely two gamers to have gained three WSOP Most important Occasions together with Johnny Moss. On prime of all these, he’s one in all solely 4 gamers to win again to again WSOP Most important occasions, along with Johnny Moss, Doyle Brunson, and Johnny Chan.

The story of Stu Ungar.

Stu Ungar died in November 1998 in an affordable Las Vegas lodge, the place he solely paid $48 per night time. Years of drug abuse is claimed to be the reason for his unlucky and premature loss of life. When requested about Stu’s loss of life, Doyle Brunson stated: “everyone felt horrible, however it wasn’t a shock.”

Regardless of having 5 WSOP bracelets and accrued event winnings of $3 million all through his profession, he died with nothing in his possession. The one cash he had was $800, which was what’s left of his $25,000 money advance. His pals needed to contribute to pay for all of the bills at his funeral.

The Comeback Child grew to become a WSOP Poker Corridor of Famer in 2001. With such achievement in a comparatively quick poker profession, one can solely think about the depth that he might have delivered to the desk. That’s why Stu Ungar will at all times be the most effective poker gamers to have ever lived.

Phil Ivey – The Tiger Woods of Poker

Phil Ivey is a residing proof that tough work pays off.

He took poker extra severely than anybody. At a younger age, Ivey was enjoying poker for as much as 15 hours a day. He even saved a journal on gamers, conditions, arms, and all the pieces that he can use to up his recreation. All of those paid off when he grew to become the primary participant to win the Jack Binion World Poker Open at solely 21.

He bought his first WSOP bracelet in 2000 when he was solely 23 and obtained $195,000. Ivey cemented his status as the most effective and youngest gamers throughout the 2002 World Collection of Poker, the place he gained three bracelets. To today, Phil Ivey’s WSOP profession highlights embrace 59 cash finishes, 31 last desk appearances, and 10 WSOP bracelets—tied at #2 with Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan.


Phil Ivey: Finest moments.

As for his World Poker Tour profession, he debuted in 2003. He has but to win a title however had 9 last desk appearances and 13 cash finishes. One of many largest scores he had in his profession was when he gained the L.A. Poker Traditional for $1.6 million.

Ivey has an estimated $26 million price of winnings from reside tournaments on prime of a number of high-stakes money video games. Regardless of his spectacular profession, his accrued earnings aren’t sufficient to place him on the highest 10 highest winnings. It’s one of many explanation why we needed to create a separate listing for the perfect poker gamers based mostly on earnings. Ivey is a fierce competitor and has gained admiration not solely amongst his friends but additionally from thousands and thousands of poker gamers worldwide. 

Daniel Negreanu – Child Poker

This listing gained’t be full with out the fan-favorite, Daniel Negreanu. He’s one of many friendliest poker gamers and is clear by the variety of following that he has. He’s the #3 on the listing of highest earnings with a complete of $41.8 million in event winnings. It’s not stunning, although, as a result of he holds 38 profession titles, together with six WSOP bracelets and two World Poker Tour titles.

Daniel Negreanu.

All of us acknowledge Negreanu along with his distinctive “card studying” expertise by a mix of his capacity to infer his opponents’ tells and congenial persona on the felt. All of those, mixed along with his exhausting work paid off when he obtained the WSOP Participant of the 12 months award in 2004, WPT Participant of the 12 months in 2005, and WSOP Corridor of Fame in 2014.

In Could 2008, he launched his ebook Energy Maintain’em Technique, which is analogous to Doyle Brunson’s ebook. It contains accounts and methods from varied skilled poker gamers, together with Evelyn Ng, Erick Lindgren, and David Williams.

Right now, Daniel Negreanu is likely one of the most lively, seen, and recognizable poker gamers by a number of social media appearances and vlogs.

Corporations take into account him one of the vital bankable poker gamers with varied sponsorships from totally different firms. Huge winnings, dozens of titles from totally different poker tournaments, and an unlimited fanbase; these are a few of the causes we take into account him the most effective poker gamers right now.

Bryn Kenney – Mega Crusher

Bryn Kenney had a narrative that resembles one other participant on this listing—Justin Bonomo. At solely 33 years previous, he has already amassed a complete of $56 million in poker winnings. There are two issues that he had in frequent with Bonomo; they each grew up enjoying Magic: The Gathering card recreation, and each of them topped the listing of essentially the most poker winnings.

His first reside money poker recreation was at East Coast Poker Championships in 2007. In 2010, he had his first 6-figure poker winnings from WSOP Most important Occasion, the place he completed twenty eighth for $255,242. From there, his profession took off, profitable a number of excessive stakes tournaments, together with EPT, WPT excessive rollers, Masters Classics of Poker, and many others. In only some years, he was capable of prime the opposite notable poker execs in cash-winnings.

Bryan Kenny makes an incredible bluff.

Kenney had his first, and solely, WSOP bracelet in 2014. He had seven last desk appearances, and 32 cash finishes. The primary time he obtained a 7-figure earnings was in 2016 when he gained the PCA’s $100,000 Tremendous Excessive Curler for $1.7 million. That very same yr, he scored $1.4 million from the Triton Tremendous Excessive Curler. The next yr, he had two huge wins from PVA excessive rollers for $1.4 million and $100,000 Excessive Curler in Monaco for $1.9 million.

In two years, he’s made extra winnings than {most professional} poker gamers. Kenney belongs to the brand new breed of poker gamers centered on taking part within the largest occasions world wide as an alternative of enjoying on the prestigious WSOP tournaments. He’s eager on proving that he’s bought the abilities to again his huge paydays from excessive curler tournaments.

Johnny Chan – Orient Specific

Johnny Chan is the primary international nationwide to win the World Collection of Poker in 1987 and once more in 1988, making him one of many solely 4 poker gamers to win two consecutive WSOP Most important Occasions. He’s on par with Doyle Brunson and Phil Ivey for having the second most variety of WSOP bracelets at 10, and one of many solely 4 gamers with ten or extra bracelets.

In 1989, he nearly grew to become the one poker participant on the earth to have gained three consecutive WSOP Most important Occasions. He was even so near being the primary, and presumably the one, poker participant to get an NBA Championship ring, when Jerry Buss, the proprietor Los Angeles Lakers, promised him one if he wins three consecutive titles. Phil Hellmuth took it away from him, and solely completed second place.

Johnny showing within the well-known film Rounders.

Chan had an estimated earnings of $4,635,014 from tournaments, excluding all of his money recreation earnings. He joined the WSOP Corridor of Fame in 2002, and he proved that he’s worthy of the title in 2005, throughout the $400,000 Poker Superstars Invitational Event. He went down from a stack of $3,200,000 chips to solely $20,000 however managed a comeback within the recreation and completed second place.

He grew to become knowledgeable poker participant on the age of 21, proper after he determined to drop out of the College of Houston. He rapidly grew to become the most effective poker gamers ever and has paved the best way for international poker gamers to get into the distinguished poker tournaments.

Justin Bonomo – ZeeJustin

Justin Bonomo is a poker sensation that has earned the second most winnings than any poker participant on the earth at solely 34 years previous. He’s a dominating pressure for anybody who’s confronted him on the felt, and it’s evident along with his complete winnings to-date that reached $45 million! Most of his winnings didn’t come from prestigious tournaments, although.

He’s an everyday excessive curler on the highest stakes desk, going towards a few of the world’s greatest poker gamers. That’s one of many explanation why he nonetheless hasn’t reached the WSOP Corridor of Fame. 

Daniel Negranu feedback a troublesome spot towards Justin Bonomo.

He’s a candidate, although, with 1 circuit ring, 3 WSOP bracelets, 19 last desk appearances, and 55 cash finishes. Nonetheless early in his profession, Bonomo already gained 18 main tournaments since 2016, together with the $300,000 Tremendous Excessive Curler Bowl for $5 million and the $1 million Large One for One Drop at WSOP for $10 million.

Bonomo is rapidly climbing the ranks of the perfect poker gamers ever. He’s nonetheless within the early phases of his profession however has already solidified his place as one of many gamers with essentially the most winnings.

Erik Seidel – Sly

Erik Seidel had one of the vital thrilling profession runs that return years earlier than poker even hit the mainstream. He grew up enjoying backgammon and labored as a inventory dealer, so he’s bought the analytical wits hardwired. All these expertise paid off when he collected eight WSOP bracelets and went face to face with Johnny Chan on the 1988 WSOP Most important Occasion.

All through his profession, Seidel has amassed an estimated $35.7 million in reside poker event winnings, and $5,388,532 of it got here from WSOP. All of his WSOP bracelets got here in between 1992 and 2007. He has a complete of 35 WSOP last desk appearances, and 92 cash finishes. 

Considered one of his largest wins was from his first WPT title, the Foxwoods Poker Traditional, for $992,890. He got here near profitable his second WPT title in 2011, however solely ended up second with $155,103.

In between these achievements, he had been teaching Maria Konnikova, a Russian-American author and psychologist. She began the sport with none information about poker. By Sly’s mentorship, she grew to become a dominant pressure and gained the PokerStars Caribbean Journey No-Restrict Maintain ’em Championship. Seidel shot again up into the mainstream when Konnikova launched her best-selling ebook, The Greatest Bluff, the place she featured her coach.

Interview with Erik Seidel.

Standards for Our Record of Finest Poker Gamers

We all know that this listing gained’t be taken evenly by different poker lovers. That’s okay; everybody has their very own opinion on who the perfect poker gamers are, however allow us to provide you with a short clarification of the standards that we used to rank these gamers. We didn’t pull these names out of skinny air, and it’s, maybe, essentially the most complete listing that you simply’ll discover.

Listed below are the standards that we’ve used to have these gamers on the listing of the perfect poker gamers ever:

Event achievements are the largest issue that we used to rank these gamers. We used every participant’s accomplishments in a few of the most prestigious tournaments. It’s the place the perfect gamers on the earth meet, and profitable it isn’t simple, so we gave it the best advantage when rating them.Votes from their friends is an uncommon metric to make use of when rating a participant. Nonetheless, when there’s an awesome variety of votes coming out of your opponents, it’s one of many tell-tale indicators that you simply’re a worthy adversary of their bid for a win on the felt. Johnny Moss was the one participant the place this metric is relevant, which gave him our highest rank.Gathered earnings have the least impression on this listing due to the large distinction in media participation from the times of Johnny Moss to what we have now right now. Nonetheless, when there’s an awesome distinction with accrued earnings, particularly for the case of Bryn Kenney and Justin Bonomo, then it’s a metric that we are able to’t take without any consideration.

There’s no denying that rating by earnings is likely one of the best methods to rank the perfect poker gamers. We don’t need to minimize you quick in your expectations, so we’ve included a shortlist of the ten poker gamers with the best accrued earnings.

10 Finest Poker Gamers Ranked by Earnings

Poker is all in regards to the expertise and stacks, so after protecting the abilities, we’ll give you the listing of the gamers with the largest accrued stacks all through their careers. Listed below are the ten poker gamers with the best estimated event earnings:

Bryn Kenney is on prime of this listing for amassing a complete of $56 million. At solely 33 years previous, and with a profession that began solely in 2007, his earnings are already sufficient to place him on the listing of the perfect poker gamers. He shot up on the highest after ending 2nd within the Triton Million, which netted him $20.5 million.Justin Bonomo shot to the highest of the accrued earnings after profitable the 2018 WSOP $1 million Large One for One Drop for $10 million, bringing his winnings to a complete of $45 million.Daniel Negreanu’s $41.8 million is partly due to his 38 WSOP last desk appearances and 108 cash finishes. His ongoing participation in varied poker tournaments would possibly propel him even larger on this listing sooner or later.Dan Smith took dwelling a complete of $36.7 million from all of his event participation. The most important win he had to date was when he completed third place at Triton Million for $8,765,628.Erik Seidel stands out as the oldest poker participant on this listing, however he managed to get a decent spot with complete earnings that reached $35.7 million. His largest payout was in 2011 when he gained the AMPC $250,000 Tremendous Excessive Curler NLHE occasion for $2.5 million.David Peters has a gradual climb in direction of the highest of the all-time cash listing and at the moment sits with $33.1 million. In 2019, he added two 7-figure winnings in his listing, and will quickly be on the next spot.Fedor Holz is the youngest on this listing at solely 25 years previous, however he already has a complete of $32.6 million. He made most of that cash throughout the 2016 and 2017 seasons, the place he gained a complete of $21 million!Stephen Chidwick doesn’t solely have a complete of $32.3 million in winnings, he additionally has the vote for being the most effective poker gamers on the earth, even by his opponents. Apart from his event winnings, he has greater than $5 million in his on-line poker accounts.Jason Koon is an everyday within the Triton tournaments. The Triton Poker ambassador ended 2019 with a large win of $6 million, bringing his complete earnings to $30 million.Daniel Colman was the winner of the second-largest payout in historical past—$15.3 million, which accounts for greater than half of his complete event earnings of $29 million. If that’s not sufficient, he bought that win after beating Daniel Negreanu within the 2014 $1 million Large One for One Drop. 


Skilled poker will get extra aggressive yr after yr with the brand new breed of gamers turning professionals. Nonetheless, others have already solidified themselves as one of many best poker gamers of all time. Right here’s our listing of who we predict needs to be within the listing of the perfect gamers of all time:

Johnny Moss (The Grand Previous Man of Poker)Phil Hellmuth (The Poker Brat)Doyle Brunson (Texas Dolly)Stu Ungar (The Comeback Child)Phil Ivey (The Tiger Woods of Poker)Daniel Negreanu (Child Poker)Justin Bonomo (ZeeJustin)Johnny Chan (Orient Specific)Bryn Kenney (Mega Crusher)Erik Seidel (Sly)

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Author: Charles Cox