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Chris Moneymaker


Poker Player Profile – Chris Moneymaker Poker Player

Poker player Chris Moneymaker initiated a poker boom when he won the WSOP 2003 Main Event after qualifying through a $39 online poker satellite tournament.

Entry To Poker

Chris Moneymaker grew up in Tennessee. He attended school there and later earned a Master’s Degree in Accounting from the University of Tennessee. At the university he was a member of the fraternity Pi Kappa Phi. After graduation he began working as an accountant.

In his childhood Moneymaker played bridge with his grandmother and blackjack with his father. However the poker movie “Rounders” changed his preference of card game and he took a liking to Texas Hold’em. He began playing poker online as and when he got time from his studies.

Live Poker Tournaments

In 2003, Moneymaker won a $39 poker satellite on PokerStars. He got an entry to a larger online poker tournament that was offering an entry to the WSOP 2003 Main Event. He won that one as well. Moneymaker borrowed fund from his father and a friend, David Gamble, for travel and lodging offering them a percentage of the winnings. The WSOP 2003 Main Event was Moneymaker’s first live poker tournament. Against all odds Moneymaker reached the heads up against poker professional Sam Farha. He offered to split the first and second place prizes but fortunately for him Farha refused, because in the end it was Moneymaker who won the gold bracelet and the prize money of $2,500,000. Moneymaker was the first WSOP Main Event winner to have entered through an online poker qualifier. This gave confidence to hordes of part time online poker players that they too could become professionals. As a result both live poker and online poker saw an exponential jump.

In 2004 Moneymaker came second at the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Stars tournament. He also missed the final table in the WSOP 2004 $5,000 Pot Limit Omaha event. Moneymaker has also done well at PokerStars European Poker Tour events. Moneymakers’ total live tournament earnings are about $2.8 million. He has had 1first place finish and 11 cashes.

Online Poker

After his WSOP 2003 Main Event win Moneymaker joined Team PokerStars Pro of the online poker room PokerStars. He plays online poker under the alias ‘Money800’. In 2008 PokerStars hosted the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP). Moneymaker participated and performed well in two events. In the $10,300 buy-in No Limit Hold’em he finished in sixth place and won over $139,000. In the $215 Pot Limit Omaha with Re-Buys he finished fifth and won over $28,000.

Other Poker Achievements

So phenomenal was Moneymakers’ WSOP 2003 success that he wrote a book on the event. The book, “Moneymaker: How an Amateur Poker Player Turned $40 into $2.5 Million at the World Series of Poker” was published in March 2005.

After winning the Main Event Moneymaker quit his job as an accountant and signed on as the celebrity spokesman for Harrah’s Entertainment and for PokerStars. He has also started his own company, Moneymaker Gaming.

Moneymaker continues to live in Spring Hill, Tennessee, with his wife and daughter. Incidentally his daughter was born a few months before his WSOP win. He prefers to spend free time with his family. He also enjoys playing sports like golf, football and basketball.

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