It is correctly said that if you do what you love, then you will surely succeed in it. Whether it is writing, doing business, teaching or playing poker, if you love your profession and enjoy what you do then you’ve taken a major step to living a fulfilling life.
Defeating the stigma of what a poker player is
When the word poker is mentioned, immediately an image comes to mind of a shabbily dressed player with a glass by his hand in a gaming hall or a casino and people immediately veer in the opposite direction of the game.
That stigma has mostly been reinforced over the past decade in America, as lawmakers have created a negative perception thanks to questionable online poker legislation. This page (https://www.beatthefish.com/us-poker-sites/) from Beat The Fish has a great breakdown of that.
However, the actual cross-section of poker players likely shares more with “normal” professions than you think. It takes skill and luck to win at poker, but it takes an intelligent mind to not lose what you won.
Poker is the new “Rock Star” profession
Before the advent of online poker rooms, televised poker, and massive tournaments few knew that professional players could reap millions of dollars. But now it’s not an impossible thought and our top ten poker players will prove that. The most famous poker players in the world are rich, suave, and at the same time and they play one hell of a game!
Daniel Negreanu ($30 Million in tournament earnings)
Winner of the World Poker Series Bracelet in Las Vegas, Europe, and Australia; this high school dropout has proven that getting rich doesn’t need a degree; But hey! Don’t you try it by yourself, not everybody is as lucky as he is!
The richest player alive?
Negreanu, who is sponsored by PokerStars, is considered to be the richest player in the world and he has won six WSOP bracelets. He is also an active philanthropist who supports charities and believes in returning to the community what you have won. He is a prolific author and now is actively featuring on reality TV shows as well.
Antonio Esfandiari ($26 Million in tournament earnings)
This Iranian-born American poker player has won 6 figures every year since 2004. Before being a professional poker player he was a magician. He has three WSOP bracelets and two world Poker tour titles to his name.
Erik Seidel ($25 Million in tournament earnings)
This American born poker player is a father of two and a high school dropout. Originally backgammon was his game of choice but now after eight WSOP bracelets and a World Poker Tour title he can be avidly found at the famous poker tables reaping millions worth of pots.
Phil Ivey ($22 Million in tournament earnings)
Also known as the “Tiger Woods of Poker” Phil Ivey is no doubt one of the best poker player of this decade. An active philanthropist and a businessman he has amounted his great wealth by winning 10 WSOP bracelets, a World Poker Tour title and by appearing at not one, not two, but nine World Poker Tour final tables.
Sam Trickett ($20 Million in tournament earnings)
A former football player who started to play poker after a knee injury which ended his football career. He is famously known for being the runner up of the biggest buy-in poker tournament called Big One for One Drop; he won $10.1 Million prize money for that tournament alone.
Phil Hellmuth ($18 Million in tournament earnings)
He has a record of winning most WSOP cashes than any other player. He boasts of 13 WSOP bracelets and was the third runner-up in the Big One for One Drop tournament. He won $2.65 Million in that game.
Jonathan Duhamel ($16 Million in tournament earnings)
Before winning the WSOP Main Event with $8.9 Million, his biggest score history was not more than $54K. Then 2010 he has started to build a reputation for himself and has a bankroll of $16 Million to his name.
John Juanda ($15 Million in tournament earnings)
This Indonesia-born player has 35 tournament cashes of $100,000 or more over the last decade and has the reputation of being a deadly player. He can be easily seen on the famous poker tables of Macau, where he won his biggest pot of $1.6 million in 2012.
Jason Mercier ($15 Million in tournament earnings)
Since 2008 this poker player is increasing in fame and popularity as well as his bankroll. In 2008 he won the European Poker Tour Main event and walked away with $1.4 Million. At just 28 years he has multiple achievements to his name, including being on top of the Global Poker Index and winning many online poker championships.
Michael Mizrachi ($14 Million in tournament earnings)
Also known as the Grinder, Michael Mizrachi boasts of 3 WSOP bracelets and countless winnings to his name. He has been playing poker for 10 years and counting and no player has been able to beat his score of $2.3 Million he earned for being the fourth runner-up in the WSOP 2010 main event.