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Playing poker can be quite profitable if you know your way around cards and chips. There are many people who make a very good living duking it out on the green felt (real and virtual alike). In that large group, there are certain players who stand out, having made millions of dollars over the course of their careers. Figuring out exact net worth of professional poker players isn’t necessarily the easiest of tasks because we only get to see their winnings. However, we’ll give it a good try and provide you with a likely list of the 10 richest poker players based on all the information we’ve been able to gather. Doyle Brunson - $75 Million According to the Celebrity Net Worth site, Doyle Brunson is worth about $75 million. The man who is often dubbed the Godfather of Poker is a true legend of the game who has seen it all over the years. Brunson’s official poker results don’t really reflect his wealth, though, as a bulk of it came from private games all over the US as well as from the sale of his famous Super System and Super System 2 books. Daniel Negreanu - $50+ million Daniel Negreanu is easily one of the best-known names in the poker world. Having made his claim to fame not only through his results but by being the main ambassador for PokerStars for a number of years, the Canadian super star is one of the richest poker players alive. His live tournament winnings stand at more than $42 million but he likely made a lot more thanks to sponsorship deals, high stakes cash game sessions, etc. Justin Bonomo - $45+ million Having accumulated almost $50,000,000 in live tournament winnings, Justin Bonomo is likely to be in the group of the 10 richest poker players alive. However, Bonomo’s net worth is still a bit of a guess as we’re not privy to all the details of the deals going on behind the closed doors of the high stakes poker scene. Erik Seidel - $40+ million Erik Seidel is one of the most recognizable figures in the poker community. Often called the “silent assassin” for his calm and composed demeanor at the tables, the Wall Street trader turned poker player has amassed tournament winnings in excess of $37 million. In addition to his poker results, Seidel was immortalized in the famous poker movie Rounders, in the scene showing his final hand against Johnny Chan in the 1988 WSOP Main Event. Fedor Holz - $33+ million Young German phenom who took the poker world by surprise, Fedor Holz has made quite a bit of money before announcing his “retirement” at the ripe age of 23. At the time of writing this, Fedor has live tournament winnings in excess of $32,000,000 and has also launched a poker coaching site. Despite being retired, he’s regularly playing in tournaments around the world, constantly adding to his net worth and climbing poker’s All Time Money list. Patrik Antonius - $30 Million Hailing from Finland, Patrik Antonius is one of the more remarkable characters the poker world has seen. A professional tennis player who turned to poker after an injury, Antonius has dominated all areas of the game and was featured in numerous poker TV shows. It’s hard to estimate his true net worth due to a bulk of his profits coming from highest stakes cash games both live and online but the best guess seems to be around $30,000,000. Phil Hellmuth - $20+ million According to some sources, the popular ‘Poker Brat’ has net worth of around $20 million. The member of poker’s Hall of Fame and the record holder for most WSOP bracelets won (15 as of the 2019 WSOP), Hellmuth is likely to be worth more than this. His tournament earnings according to Hendon Mob stand at $23,000,000 and Phil also has several successful businesses and has published a number of poker books. Antonio Esfandiari - $20 Million Better known by his nickname “The Magician”, Antonio Esfandiari has managed to make his dreams come true playing poker. From performing tricks under the bright lights of Las Vegas stages to dazzling his opponents at a poker table, Esfandiari has managed to amass a grand total of $27,000,000 in live winnings. His total net worth is estimated to be around $20 million although this number could easily be higher. Phil Galfond - $15+ million Not much information is available on Phil Galfond and his net worth figure is somewhat of a guess, adding up his live and online winnings as well as the fact he’s recently launched a brand new poker site. Galfond has stayed out of the limelight for the most of his career, so it’s no surprise there isn’t much info about his finances but given his success over the years, he’s likely to be in the company of the some of the richest poker players. Doug Polk - $10 million Doug Polk has made most of his money playing online, especially in high stakes heads up skirmishes. Recently, he’s taken a step back from playing and has been focusing on building his elite coaching site called Upswing Poker, which features some of the best players around. Doug Polk’s net worth is estimated at around $10,000,000, albeit this figure seems to be on a conservative side.
The World Series of Poker is among the top ten richest sporting events in the world. Having recently celebrated its 50th anniversary, it's also one of the oldest events on that same list. With that kind of history and that kind of money, it's also a complex tournament for the beginner poker player to understand. If you're new to the world of high stakes poker, there's a lot you have to learn about the WSOP. If you want to hold any type of conversation with your fellow players, then you should know about the tournament's origins, how much money is on the line, and how you can get yourself into the World Series of Poker Main Event. For all of that and more, keep reading this guide to the WSOP. Origins of WSOP The first WSOP took place in 1970, where there were less than 50 poker tables across all of Las Vegas. It had only 30 players and it wasn't a poker tournament as we understand it today. Instead, the inaugural world champion of poker was voted "best all-around player" by his peers after the event had concluded. Outside of Las Vegas, nobody knew about the first WSOP. By the following year, a $5,000 entry fee was added and a winner-take-all prize was introduced. The same Johnny Moss won the tournament for the second year in a row and the poker event began to take off. By 1973, the World Series was broadcast on CBS Sports and by 1982, there were 11 preliminary events. The organizers added a Ladies World Championship as well as the World Series of Poker Main Event. That year, 13 events in total awarded over $2.5 million to the top players. Throughout the 1990s, organizers made improvements to the atmosphere and structure of the tournament. By then it spanned four weeks and involved more than 20 tournaments. In 1991, the Main Events broke the 200-player mark and the first million-dollar cash price was awarded. By 2003, a new tournament began taking a bit of the spotlight from the WSOP. The World Poker Tour was direct competition, and the number of attendees in the first weeks of the WSOP reflected that. But that same year, Chris Moneymaker won and changed the future of the tournament. Thousands of players flocked to the tournament in the years following. Who Plays The World Series of Poker Main Event? In 2019, more than 7,000 players were expected to participate in the Main Event alone. While anybody that can make the $10,000 buy-in can enter, it also draws poker legends such as Daniel Negreanu, Phil Hell Smith, Phil Ivey, and former champion John Cynn. Winning the Main Event puts your name in the poker hall of fame. That's because it comes with the unofficial title of the "World Champion" of poker. Some dispute this title because poker involves as much luck as it does skill. And that's how the WSOP has demonstrated time and time again that inexperienced players and even beginners can find themselves in a deep run at their first tournament. What Are the Tournaments Prize Amounts? How much is on the table at the WSOP varies. It depends on how big the entry of the tournament is, how large the field is, and of course, how far you make it into the tournament. At the very least, you can be guaranteed a pretty good payout if you win any of the tournaments. For example, the Main Event in 2018 awarded a prize of $8,800,000. Not to mention the much-coveted golden bracelet. But the biggest payout that the tournament ever saw was in 2006. That year, the WSOP had a record of 8,773 entries. That created a final prize amount of $12,000,000, which was awarded to Jamie Gold. Tournament Structure in Recent Years The 2019 WSOP event had 66 events in total. That same year, the record for attendance was shattered. There were more than 147,330 entrants in the entire tournament. But the WSOP has also expanded outside the walls of Las Vegas casinos. Tournaments take place in almost 12 casinos across the US. This is part of the World Series of Poker Circuit where players across the nation can participate. But the WSOP Main Event is still the main event. It's the most popular and coveted title in the world of poker, thanks to its structure and the ability for experienced players to show off their skill. And with a buy-in that has sat at $10,000 since the 1980s, anybody is eligible for entry. Are There Other Ways of Getting to the Main Event? Not everybody can afford to pay a $10,000 buy-in to test their skills. As such, there are other ways of getting into the Main Event that doesn't involve a $10,000 investment. You can try your hand at live and online satellites. Satellites are sit-n-go or mini-tournaments. The winner of these satellites is awarded a ticket to bigger competitions, which can be an event at the WSOP up to and including the Main Event. What Type of Poker Is Played At WSOP? The World Series of Poker involves all types of poker, played at all levels. Each year, you'll find at least one tournament for every type of poker. However, most of the competitions, including the Main Event, are No Limit Hold'Em style. Trying Your Hand At Poker The WSOP tournaments are open to anybody that can make the buy-in. And while the World Series of Poker Main Event is a steep $10,000, playing satellites can get you in on this coveted tournament. It's not limited to experienced players, either. Plenty of beginner or novice players have tried their hand in these tournaments, and some have even come out of it with a decent payout - or at least a lot more experience than they would have got elsewhere. But before you go spending that kind of money to get yourself some experience, why not try your hand at some online poker. Check out all of the games we have available online.