This is not the era of conventions. Like every field, the professional field is also extending its branches into varied aspects of becoming successful. Gone are the days when the most successful career options were engineering and medical studies. This generation has learned to take chances, follow their own call and reach the pedestal of success.
Poker has also become such a career option which can earn you both money and fame. The biggest perk is, you don’t need any specific degree or educational qualification to become a successful poker player; all you need is your adulthood (playing poker below the age of 21 is illegal) and skills, of course (which can be developed). Going by the words of the experienced, ‘perseverance is the key to success’. Being naturally good at something is a boon but practice and the will to polish your skills is the main factor. Poker requires just that- your patience to brush up your skills and your belief in yourself. This game of skill and strategy has given a platform to many celebrities who were a nobody once upon a time. Most of the celebrated poker professionals of today have built themselves up from a scratch and now have secured a respectable and financially secure position in the society. Here are a few poker professionals from the poker landscape who have outrightly proved to the world that to become successful, all you need is the courage to follow your calling-
This Canadian chap was not an extraordinary name in the poker world when he first started playing poker. His inclination towards poker started when he used to visit pool halls, betting rooms etc. in his teenage. Very soon he could understand that poker was his call and with his parent's support he took up poker as his profession. It wasn’t easy to grope a platform in the poker industry at such a tender age. The biggest obstacle was maintaining bankroll. After his first plunge into the poker world, he got himself trained a bit and visited Las Vegas to turn the tables of his life. He couldn’t survive there much. After a few months, he had to return back to Toronto due to his inability to maintain the bankroll. But at the age of 23, he became the youngest poker player, at that time, to win a WSOP bracelet.
Who doesn’t know this name in the poker landscape? Where there is poker, there is an existence of Ivy there. His introduction to poker happened in the back-room games at the New Jersey Telemarketing Firm, his workplace in the 90s. His passion for poker made him forge an ID to gain an access to the Atlantic City’s casinos. But now, Ivy’s value has reached to over $14,000,000.
This China-born poker star had an all-set career option in Texas. But ironically, he chose Texas Holdem instead of his family business of restaurant. He pursued his calling and in 1987, he won two WSOP bracelets back to back. After that, there was no looking back and now he owns 10 more such prestigious bracelets to his name.
His life was quite set and stable when he took his calling. He wasn’t a very skilled player when he decided to switch his career but he knew his goals well. He spent $40 to enter an online poker qualifier for the 2003 WSOP seat as a novice. He polished his skills swiftly and efficiently and within a couple of months, bagged the 839-strong Main Event. It’s been more than a decade now that he is a professional poker player in the poker landscape.
This lady is really the superhero of poker. She is one of the most celebrated female poker professionals and has reputed poker titles to her honour. When she got inclined towards poker, she had a well-defined academic path for herself. But after knowing poker, she didn’t take much time to realize what would give her professional satisfaction. It was 2006 when Selbst took up her first WSOP tournament and in her first time, made her way to the final table and also the top 7. Since then, she went on climbing the success ladder of poker. She is also the only female poker player to have secured the first position on the ‘player of the year’ list by the Global Poker Index. Recently she retired from being a professional poker player.
Poker world can boast of numerous such players whose success stories are inspirational. Poker is an unbiased field where only your skills and strategies are responsible for your success or deterioration. It’s a field where you don’t find cheap diplomacies and nepotism. You are responsible for what happens to you.
So go out there and make things happen, because here in poker, we rely on our capabilities of playing our cards and not on the quality of cards dealt with us.
Nickname - Kid Poker
Born and Brought up - Daniel Negreanu was born in Toronto, Canada and currently lives in Las Vegas, NV.
Winnings - $$12,432,367
WSOP Bracelets - 6
WPT Champions Cups - 2
Books - Hold'em Wisdom for all Players, Power Hold'em Strategy
Movies - X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Detention
Canada All Time Money List - 1st
All Time Money List Current Rank - 1st
All Time Money List Best Rank - 1st
Global Poker Index Ranking - 49th
Popularity Ranking - 1st
Best Live Cash - $8,288,001
Total Live Earnings - $32,469,980
1974 - Born on July 26th, 1974 in Toronto, Daniel Negreanu is the biggest name in the poker world.
1990 - Discovered his kinship for poker, pool hustling and gambling.
1995 - Came to The City of Lights, Las Vegas to the tenet poker world, but soon realised casinos in Vegas were different from the Casinos in Toronto. Daniel lost his bankroll in Vegas and went back to Toronto to reconstruct what he had lost.
1997 - Patience paid well and Daniel was named best all-around player at Foxwoods’ World Poker Final.
1988 - Daniel was given the nickname “Kid Poker” in this year. At 23, he became the youngest person to win a popular gold bracelet taking down the $2,000 Pot Limit Hold’em tournament for $169,460.
2002, 2003, 2004 - He won subsequent titles in 2002, 2003, and 2008
2004 - It was indeed the best year for Daniel as he made it to 11 final tables which included two WPT victories (Borgata and Bellagio) and his third World Series of Poker bracelet in Limit Hold ‘Em. He earned title for both the World Series of Poker Player of the Year and Card Player Magazine Player of the Year titles. He was also named WPT Season 3 (2004-2005) Player of the Year. He won sumptuous $4,465,907 that year.
2005 - Daniel contributed a chapter for Doyle Brunson’s “Super System 2” and began working on his two books.
2007 - Became a member of PokerStars and released his book “Hold’em Wisdom for all players”.
2008 - Released his book “Power Hold’em Strategy” and managed to cash in 3 WPT events including a 3rd place at the Jack Binion World Poker Open for $384,000.
2009 - Acted in movie “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”
2011 - Acted in movie “Detention”
2013 - Daniel was named the 2013 WSOP Player of the Year, the 2013 Bluff Player of the Year and the 2013 Card Player Magazine Player of the Year and was ranked #1 on the GPI rankings to finish the year.
2014 - Won $8,288,001 for $1 Million Big One for One Drop and $156,674 for $10K No-Limit 2-7 Draw Lowball during World Series of Poker
2015 - Won $526,778 for $10K NL Main Event and $113,062 for $10K Stud Hi-Low during World Series of Poker.