5 Best Poker Players
There is a lot of money to be made playing poker. Many of the game’s best players have climbed the ladder and made millions on the live and virtual felt in the world of poker tournaments.
Let’s take a look at the top ten best poker players of all time, based on tournament earnings.
5. Erik Seidel (US): $35.7 million
The “old man” on this list, 58-year-old Erik Seidel is one of the original players from New York City’s Mayfair Clu0b, which includes the likes of Stu Ungar, Dan Harrington, and Howard Lederer. Seidel is an eight-time WSOP bracelet winner who has made an impressive 35 final tables and whopping 92 cashes, including his 2nd-place finish in the 1988 Main Event behind Johnny Chan.
Seidel won his largest cash payout of almost $2.5 million at the 2011 Aussie Millions Poker Championship $250,000 Super High Roller NLHE event. In 2010, he was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame.
4. Dan Smith (US): $36.7 million
Dan Smith isn’t a vocal player, but he has been slowly and surely moving up the All-Time Money List. 2012 marked a turning point in Smith’s career, beginning with a victory in the Aussie Millions Poker Championship $100,000 NHLE event for a very respectable $1.04 million. Smith also did particularly well at the 2012 EPT-8 in Monte Carlo, where he won three NLHE events over a span of four days.
Most recently, Smith placed 3rd in the 2018 WSOP Big One for One Drop for $4 million and scored his biggest career cash with a 3rd place finish for $8,765,628 at the Triton Million.
Take a look at Smith playing the 2016 WSOP $111,111 for One Drop. He ultimately finished in 2nd place, winning $3,078,974
3. Daniel Negreanu (Canada): $41.8 million
Daniel “Kid Poker” Negreanu spent considerable time atop the all-time money list until the 2018 WSOP. But Negreanu’s career isn’t anything to scoff at. He has six WSOP bracelets, made 38 final tables, and has cashed 108 times, including as 11th place finish at both the 2001 and 2015 WSOP Main Events. Negreanu was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2014.
Negreanu’s uncanny ability to read his opponents with incredible accuracy has undoubtedly contributed to his impressive success and well-deserved place among the best poker players of all time.
2. Justin Bonomo (US): $45 million
Justin Bonomo took over the top spot with his win in the 2018 WSOP $1 million Big One for One Drop. The $10 million prize swiftly propelled him to #1 on the All Time Money List. Now at #2, the 32-year-old Bonomo had a crazy run in 2018, amassing wins seemingly wherever he played. This three-time WSOP bracelet winner managed an impressive ten wins in various high-roller events across the world that year, including the May Aria Super High Roller Bowl $300,000 NLHE event where he won $5 million and the Macau Super High Roller Bowl $HK 3 million NLHE event where he pocketed another $4.8 million (HK $37.8 million). Bonomo certainly shows no signs of slowing down.
1. Bryn Kenney (US): $55.5 million
Bryn Kenney’s incredible 2019 run has vaulted him to the top of this list, with his biggest career cash coming in August at the Triton Million. Kenney finished 3rd in that event for $20,563,324.
Kenney’s first live tournament cash was in 2007. Since then he has steadily added to his impressive winnings. Kenney won a WSOP bracelet in 2014 at the $1,500 10-Game Mix 6-Handed event, and, in total, he has made seven final WSOP tables and cashed 32 times, including a 28th place in the 2010 Main Event. His largest single cash of nearly $2 million came back in April 2017, at the PokerStars Championship €100,000 NLHE Super High Roller 8-Max in Barcelona. Since then, Kenney has had many top-five finishes across the globe.
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