The 8 Most Famous Poker Players
From charitable winners to World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelet collectors, the world of poker has seen many impressive personalities take to the felt over the years. These famous poker players have used their unrivalled skills, quick thinking and enchanting charisma to rise to the top of the industry.
And, here at Mr Green, we love nothing more than to talk endlessly about our own favourite poker stars – the ones that inspired our love of the game in the first place. That’s why we’ve pulled together this list detailing some of the most famous poker players in history.
Continue reading, below, to find out which famous poker stars found their way into our hall of fame.
1. Daniel Negreanu: Kid Poker
Known as ‘Kid Poker’ to those in the industry, Daniel Negreanu is one of the most well-known poker players in the world, thanks in no small part to his association with PokerStars.
Negreanu was one of PokerStars’ most high-profile players when he signed in 2007 and continued his impressive reign at the company for 12 fruitful years. His rankings in poker databases also places him among the top of poker’s famous players and he is often seen as the poster boy of the modern poker era.
2. Vanessa Selbst: Head of the National Heads-Up Poker Championship
Netting almost $12 million in her illustrious career, Vanessa Selbst is not only one of the most famous female poker players in the world – she is also one of the most successful. Her biggest payday came in 2010, when she won an impressive €1.3 million prize during the Partouche Poker Tour Cannes Main Event.
Even in retirement, Selbst is still seen as a very influential figure in the world of poker. Her reputation as a world famous poker player continues to conjure excitement whenever she makes a rare tournament appearance, among fans and peers alike.
3. Doyle Brunson: Texas Dolly
From a modern favourite in Selbst to one of the very first players to carve out an iconic reputation, Doyle Brunson is likely the most famous old poker player from the pre-poker boom era.
And while Brunson officially retired from the poker scene back in 2018, his influence on the industry can still be felt today. This is due to the veteran poker player’s literary pedigree; Brunson wrote the hugely influential ‘Super System’ series of books that continue to inform fledging poker players to this day.
4. Phil Ivey: The Tiger Woods of Poker
Like Tiger Woods’ unyielding grip on golf, Phil Ivey is considered to be the best of the best among world famous poker players.
Ivey enjoyed an incredibly successful career, including taking home a whopping $20 million prize from Full Tilt Poker. It’s not all been smooth sailing, with accusations of cheating dogging his career, but for our money, he is one of the most talented famous poker players to ever grace the felt.
5. Jennifer Harman: High Stakes in the Big Game and the Bellagio
One of the more reserved famous female poker players, Jennifer Harman rose to prominence thanks to her appearances on poker television shows, such as High Stakes Poker and Poker After Dark.
Harman’s poker prowess extends far beyond the lights and action of television, however.
Her professional accomplishments include being one of the only four women to win two WSOP bracelets and earning 14 money finishes on the World Poker Tour.
6. Barry Greenstein: The Robin Hood of Poker
Elected to the Poker Hall of Fame in 2011, Barry Greenstein is known for both his indomitable poker skills and acts of generosity.
Known as ‘The Robin Hood of Poker’, Greenstein has donated much of the profits from his tournament winnings to charity, cementing him as one of the most popular poker players in the history of the game. This includes winning $770,000 at a $1 million event and donating $40,000 to Children, Incorporated.
7. Scotty Nguyen: The Prince of Poker
The only player to win both the WSOP Main Event and the $50,000 Players’ Championship, Scotty Nguyen has more than earned his title of ‘the Prince of Poker’.
Nguyen has won five WSOP bracelets, netting approximately $3.5 million, in addition to taking home almost $2 million in the H.O.R.S.E. World Championship. His success on the poker circuit even caught the attention of television personalities, leading him to make a rare appearance on ‘Late Night with Conan O’Brien’ in 2004!
8. Linda Johnson: The First Lady of Poker
As one of the easiest entries into the Poker Hall of Fame, Linda Johnson has certainly earned her name as the ‘First Lady of Poker’.
Her stories career has seen her establish the Tournament Directors Association, serve as the publisher of Card Player and create the non-profit organisation PokerGives.org. This charity was designed by Johnson herself to simplify the process of poker players donating a portion of their winnings to charity. It’s little surprise that Johnson is one of the most famous poker players in history!
To read more about poker and other games in our casino, take a look at Mr Green’s casino blog. Or, if you’re inspired by these legends of the game, try out our live poker games for yourself. Good luck!