Phil Ivey

Poker player biography of Phil Ivey

Phil Ivey is nicknamed the “Tiger Woods of Poker,” because of the way that the young man quickly took over the poker scene, like Tiger Woods did the golf scene. Regarded by many as the best all-around poker player in the world, the Tiger Woods of Poker has all the trophies to show for it. Phil Ivey has entered into the World Series of Poker (WSOP), the World Poker Tour (WPT), and the European Poker Tour (EPT). He has reached the final table at least once in these, three of the most popular and prestigious poker tournament series.

Phil Ivey: the irony of a lifetime

Phil Ivey was born on the first of February 1976, in Riverside, California. When he was only three months old, they moved to Roselle, New Jersey. It was in New Jersey that Ivey would get his first taste of poker. His grandfather tried to keep him from going into gambling by hustling the young boy in poker by dealing from the bottom of the deck. Eight years later, Phil Ivey could be found playing backroom cash games.

At the age of 18, Ivey was already in Atlantic City, playing at the poker tables. Armed with a fake ID that he got from a co-worker, he hit the tables only to find that he needed more practice. The player who now had the casino nickname “No Home Jerome” was having a hard time. His losses at the poker table resulted in hard times as he couldn't keep up with his rent and utility bills. Somewhere along the way, Phil's luck began to change. He got married and continued to progress as a poker player.

The first chance that Phil had to showcase his poker talent to the world was in the 2000 World Series of Poker. At the relatively young age of 24, Phil appeared on the professional poker circuit and took everyone by surprise. He finished fifth place in the $2,000 No-Limit Texas Hold'em event. The biggest win of the year would be in the $2,500 Pot-Limit Omaha event. Going up against legendary poker players, like Devilfish Ulliott, Amarillo Slim Preston and Phil Hellmuth, Phil Ivey took first place. It was the first of the five WSOP gold bracelets that he currently holds.

2002 was a breakthrough year for the young poker professional. It was on this year that Ivey would take home three WSOP bracelets to solidify his place in poker history. He joined poker greats Phil Hellmuth Jr, Puggy Pearson, and Ted Forrest in poker history by tying their record for the most wins in one year. His fifth bracelet would come in the Pot-Limit Omaha event in the 2005 WSOP. Here are some of Phil Ivey's statistics:
* European Poker Tour – reached the final table once, having one money finish
* World Poker Tour – reached the final table 8 times, holds one title, and has had a total of 9 money finishes
* World Series of Poker – has five bracelets and 30 money finishes

Still, it seems that the Tiger Woods of Poker is only beginning his poker career as he has many more years to compete in the world's biggest events.