Most Famous Poker Players from Nevada

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A ‘Welcome to Nevada’ sign against a blue sky.
BetMGM Jan 29, 2022, 9:33 AM

When you think of Nevada, one can’t help but think of bright lights, a thriving nightlife and of course, casinos and gaming. So it comes as no surprise that it ranks among the US’ top states for producing professional poker players. With the advent of technology and digital solutions, more people are starting to explore how to play poker online, with the hopes of participating in some major poker tournaments and ultimately being named as one of the greats.

In fact, online poker and, with it, online poker tournaments have contributed hugely to the growing interest in poker in recent years. Whether you’re playing online poker or live poker, the basis of the game remains the same. Poker enthusiasts argue that to truly establish a name for yourself within the online community, you need to know how to play online poker in Nevada, a place that some of the best poker players in the world call home.

Famous poker players from Nevada

That being said, poker players from all walks of life make their way to Nevada on a regular basis with the express purpose of enjoying the poker tournaments and coming face to face with renowned professionals. Below are three of the most notable poker players who eventually settled in Nevada and have gone on to cement themselves as industry leaders.

Doyle Brunson

Regarded as one of the most recognized poker legends, Doyle Brunson initially wanted to become a professional basketball player. As fate would have it, an injury ultimately led him to the poker table, although he had already started playing the card game before the incident. He now boasts multiple titles to his name and has been dubbed the “Godfather of Poker.” Brunson’s career at the felt spans more than five decades, and he tightened his grip on the game well before Texas Hold’em poker gained popularity.

To share his expertise, Brunson has written several poker-focused books, one of which is the bestseller, Super System. He has also been a member of the Poker Hall of Fame since 1988. Now, with the popularity of the likes of MGM casinos – which give players the platform to showcase their Texas Hold’em poker skills and participate in poker tournaments – many others are looking to follow in his footsteps. Brunson was one of the first seven players to participate in the inaugural World Series of Poker (WSOP) events and has won 10 WSOP bracelets to date. He was also the first player to win $1 million in poker tournaments, according to reports.

Billy Baxter

Billy Baxter is someone who was introduced to the game before it was possible to play poker online. This iconic player has seven WSOP gold bracelets to his name and was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2006. Initially, he was set to go into dentistry, which was the career path that his parents desired for him, but he dropped out to follow his passion for poker (his love of the game was ignited when he was 18.)

After tying the knot in 1975, he and his wife took a detour that led to them staying in Nevada for nine months while he played poker!

In 2008, he won two World Poker Tour (WPT) tournaments in a month. According to reports, Baxter has amassed well over $2 million in live poker tournament earnings in his career, which spans more than four decades. As it stands, there is no record of any official online poker account that belongs to Baxter.

Phil Ivey

A true rags-to-riches story, Phil Ivey’s journey to the top had a relatively rocky start, although now he owns property in Las Vegas. He started playing with a fake ID because he was underage at the time, occasionally sleeping along Atlantic City’s boardwalk, the famous promenade that boasts a multitude of casinos, hotels and restaurants. His success can be partially attributed to the guidance he received from Barry Greenstein and Daniel Negreanu, who are also legends in their own right.

Like Brunson, Ivey also has 10 WSOP gold bracelets to his name. He has bagged more than $26 million in live poker tournament earnings, and has also won a WPT title. He was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2017, which he described as an honor because of the inductees that came before him, such as Chip Reese and Brunson himself. As a way of paying it forward, Ivey launched his Ivey League poker training site in 2014.

Explore online poker at BetMGM

Whether you are looking to find out about the best online poker in Nevada, or even how to play online poker in Nevada, you’ve got several references and people to learn from. The state is home to not only poker legends, but also those on the come-up. But you don’t have to travel there to experience the action for yourself. Get in on the action by signing up with BetMGM, where you can play many types of poker, both in online games and tournaments, as well as lots of other online casino games. Welcome to BetMGM!

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Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.

Our BetMGM editors and authors are sports experts with a wealth of knowledge of the sports industry at all levels. Their coverage includes sports news, previews and predictions, fun facts, and betting.