Famous Gamblers

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From modern day Las Vegas and the Far East to the olden days of the Wild West, the world has loved gambling in its various forms. During that time, there have been famous and notorious gamblers who helped spawn the different stereotypes that are encountered today. Now, you can discover more about this fascinating topic by checking out the stories below.

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Old School Sharks

Wild West gamblers were famed for their hard drinking and hot tempers. After a round of poker, it was not uncommon for a sore loser to gun down their opponent and flip the table over. These are the Wild West players you would definitely have avoided.

Wild Bill Hickok

Wild Hill was known throughout the Wild West as a lawman and legendary gunslinger. When not fighting foes, Wild Bill liked to play five-card poker. In his final hand, Bill was shot in the back while holding a pair of black aces and a pair of black eights. This eventually became known as the “dead man’s hand”.

Poker Alice

Alice Ivers moved from England to Old West in the 1800s and learned poker from first husband Drank Duffield. She would later gain renown as Poker Alice for winning games throughout the Wild West, including the states of Colorado and New Mexico.

Doc Holliday

Doc Holliday was a good friend of fellow Wild West legend Wyatt Earp. Back then there was not much to do, which is why Holliday turned to gambling and eventually established a reputation.

Today’s Top Players

Nowadays, professional gamblers will not shoot you, but they could take you for everything you own, especially poker players. Make sure to avoid these players at all costs.

Scotty Nguyen

The Vietnam national moved to the US at 14 years old, but would be expelled from high school from playing in illegal poker tournaments. However, this served Scotty Nguyen well in eventually winning multiple World Series of Poker (WSOP) bracelets.

Sam Trickett

Sam Trickett began his poker career in the UK after injury ruled out professional football for him. By the age of the 30, Trickett was already an international poker star, having won hundreds of millions of dollars and being the fifth-highest tournament earner of all-time.

Andrew Black

Andrew Black is another pro poker player to avoid, having played cards from childhood. Now into his 50s, Black has played against poker legend Stuey Ungar, but is also a multimillionaire thanks to his poker winnings.

Slang for gamblers

In gambling, there are some well-known slang terms to describe the various stereotypes and personalities you can encounter at the tables. Familiarise yourself with the help of this list:

  • Card shark: These players are to be avoided at all costs, as they are specialists at cards and are likely to take you down.
  • High roller: It’s all about going big or going home with these players, as they only like wagering in high-stakes games.
  • Whale: By comparison, whales are quite similar to high rollers in that they play with large stakes, but they are less skilled and can fall victim to the personalities above.
  • Hot heads: Known for their aggressive wagering, these players do not handle it well when they lose.

Renowned Celebrity Players

Celebrity gamblers do not have to be talented players to earn their status in gambling. However, there are some famous gamblers here that have been known to rack up the winnings.

Michael Jordon

Basketball icon Michael Jordan loved to gamble when he was not on the court winning championships. Back in 1992, Jordan dominated at the Barcelona Olympics with his fellow players. At the time, Jordan would also play poker almost every night with his teammates.

Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck has played at the WSOP main event in Las Vegas, and is even talented enough to count cards in blackjack. But it’s the latter activity that got him banned from all Hard Rock Casinos in the US.

Tiger Woods

Golf legend Tiger Woods has been renowned as a blackjack aficionado for many years now, with the passion beginning in his 20s. However, the real story is that he is rumoured to have staked up to $50 million during his days playing blackjack in Las Vegas.

There are many ways to become a famous gambler, but being a talented player has go to be the most appealing.

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