Eric Seidel: biography, success story of an American poker player

Poker is the most popular game of chance that can be played at any 5 pounds deposit casino. American professional poker player Eric Seidel has amassed over $38 million in offline tournaments. The American has nine World Series of Poker bracelets, is a member of the Poker Hall of Fame and is also one of the top 5 poker players in terms of prize money earned. Remarkably, he won his last gold bracelet in 2021 at the WSOP Online 2021. Here is how he came to such worldwide acclaim: his success story as a professional poker player, Eric Seidel’s biography and his latest achievements. 

Eric Seidel’s background

Eric Seidel was born in 1959 in New York City to a middle-class American family. Already in the early years Eric began to show extraordinary mathematical abilities. Most of all the boy was interested in competitive games, where the victory was not determined by luck alone. After joining a college, Saidel became seriously interested in backgammon, and then even dropped out for a career as a professional backgammon player. Soon Eric joined a community of backgammon and card playing enthusiasts called Mayfair Club, and he’s been playing in backgammon tournaments for eight years. Some of them attracted prizes of up to $250,000.

In between challenging backgammon tournaments, he played Texas Hold’em while in Las Vegas. Initially, Eric Seidel thought poker was just a way of having a good time but in the second half of the 80’s things started to go downhill: prizes in backgammon championships started to decrease and many players switched to poker. In order to have stable income, the American got a job as a stockbroker in 1985. At the same time, he participated in poker tournaments with moderate prize fund. After the crash of the stock exchange in 1987, Eric moved to New York City where he became more interested in poker.

A success as a poker pro, Seidel studied poker theory extensively, rereading all the available literature and continuously analyzing his opponents’ play. This soon paid off as he was old enough to qualify for the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in 1988. Financial backing from friends enabled him to qualify for the WSOP, finishing second only to Johnny Chan. The prize money was $280,000 and the American had a successful period ahead of him.

Eric Seidel’s maximum single event profit was $2,472,555 for first place in the Super High Roller event in Melbourne (2011). Despite being quite mature, Eric is as good as his younger rivals. He was 61 when he won WSOP Online 2021. Eric Seidel was personal trainer to poker writer Maria Konnikova, who wanted to learn the basics of poker and write a book about psychology. Maria’s poker achievements are a credit to Eric Seidel. Thanks to a year of practice under the auspices of the American professional, she was able to win $86,000 in a PCA National poker tournament. In addition, the American player joined Bad Beat on Cancer, a charity programme dedicated to the study, prevention and fight against cancer, in 2003. Many high profile poker players have donated 1% of their winnings to the charity, including Eric Seidel.

Despite a successful debut at the 1988 WSOP, it took Eric a long time before he recovered from his second-place finish at the World Series. He even returned to brokering for a while and took a poker time-out. But the American made a successful comeback in 1991, finishing in second place in the $5,000 buy-in tournament. 

The next three years were the most remarkable in his poker career as he won three WSOP bracelets: 

  • 1992 – $2,500 buy-in in Limit Hold’em, winning $168,000. 
  • 1993 – $2,500 buy-in, Limit Hold’em High-Low, winning $94,000. 
  • 1994 – entry fee: $5000, Limit Hold’em event, $210K win. 

Eric’s third WSOP bracelet pushed him into poker professionally. Of course, the player moved to the gambling capital of the world, Las Vegas for this. Sidel was once again successful in 1998, taking his fourth bracelet in the WSOP Lowball event for $132,750. A year later, he placed fourth in the WSOP for $280,000. 

Eric Seidel won four consecutive WSOP gold bracelets between 2001 and 2007. Year Entry Fee Discipline Prizes 2001 $3000 Limit Hold’em $411k. 2003 $1500 Pot Limit Omaha $146k. 2005 $2000 Limit Hold’em $612k. 2007 $5000 Lowball $539k. 2010 was a big year for Eric Sydel – after his 28th tournament win he was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame. The WSOP events are not the only ones where the American has had success. He’s also won the WPT, came third on the SHRB, finished sixth on the Aria Super High Roller and cashed at the EPT. 

World Poker Tour records

 Eric won his ninth consecutive WPT title in 2011, becoming the series record holder. No other poker player has ever achieved such results before. Seidel has 20 cashes, five final tables and one WPT win. His achievements include winning gold in the WPT in 2008. The same year, the American won one of the championships in this prestigious series for $992,890.  

Recent Poker Player Achievements 

His most recent success came in August 2021 when the poker player won the $10,000 Super Million at the WSOP Online 2021. This is the American poker player’s ninth gold bracelet, and the prize money totaled $977,000. 

Interestingly, winning such events is particularly valued in poker circles. The competition is run exclusively by professionals and there are no limits on the number of re-entries (Francisco Benitez has had nine re-entries). You can meet Eric in tournaments under the nicknames Sly, Seiborg, Empty chair. Given the size of Seidel’s prize money, the American plays a lot and is fairly professional, but he has more luck in live games than online tournaments. The man has a conservative attitude to finances and is touted as a player who’s never had any trouble with money. In the poker community, Eric is considered a living legend. 

Remarkably, a full 14 years passed between Eric Seidel’s 8th and 9th WSOP bracelets. Perhaps his tenth anniversary bracelet should be expected for the same amount of time. Then the American stands a good chance of becoming the oldest WSOP tournament winner ever

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