Stan’s Lists – WSOP Cashes

[SS] “Probably an easy question for you”, Stan the Stat offered Roderick the Rock. “Who has the most World Series of Poker cashes?”

[RR] “The Poker Brat, by quite a bit I believe”, Rod asserted.

[SS] “Do you know how many he has?”

[RR] “He was closing in on a hundred, last I knew.”

[SS] “Indeed. Phil Hellmuth collected his one hundredth WSOP payday last week in the World Series of Poker Europe 2,200-Euro No Limit Hold’em event. He’s also reached the most final tables, with 49, ten more than T.J. Cloutier. Coincidentally, 49 is also his age.”

[RR] “When he turns 50, does he start morphing from Poker Brat into Grumpy Old Man?”

[SS] “Maybe when he starts going bald or turning gray. Harder question. Who has the second most cashes?”

[RR] “I don’t know. I can think of a dozen players who could be next, but I don’t know who I’d pick.”

[SS] “I’ll give you three guesses.”

[RR] “Well, going down the bracelet list, the older guys had fewer events to play in, so that rules out Brunson and Moss. I don’t think Chan plays enough events. Ivey’s too young and hasn’t always committed to the WSOP. That leaves Erik Seidel, Men Nguyen, and less likely, Billy Baxter, since I’ve barely heard of him.”

[SS] “Well deduced! You not only nailed Seidel in second (80) but Nguyen in third (79) as well. Seidel just pulled ahead with a cash in a WSOPE Hold ‘Em side event. Baxter’s mainly a lowball specialist1

[SS] “Of the next three players (fourth through sixth), I would expect you to only get one of them. I’ll let you pick six names.”

[RR] “Cloutier, Flack, Heimowitz, Negreanu, Chiu, and Juanda are the rest of the players with at least five bracelets, so I’m guessing you’re saying that it’s only one of them.”

[SS] “Correct.”

[RR] “I don’t really have a better guess. If I replace any of those players, I might remove the one right answer… Okay, scratch Heimowitz, since I don’t know who he is. I’ll go with Ivey instead.”

[SS] “You’re right, it wasn’t Heimowitz, who only has 39 cashes. Humberto Brenes is fourth with 72 cashes. Negreanu’s your correct guess, as he’s now fifth with 69 cashes, having final tabled the WSOP Europe High Roller event to win WSOP Player of the Year again.2 The player who just dropped to sixth is possibly the most underrated WSOP player of all time, a Londoner named Chris Bjorin. The Swedish immigrant reached the Main Event final table in 1997 and cashed in the Main Event a record-tying four straight years3 from 2008 to 2011.”

[RR] “You’re right; I can’t say that I’ve heard of Bjorin; he should definitely be more famous,… if only his final table weren’t a half-dozen years before the poker boom.”

[SS] “As for your other guesses: Juanda is tied for eighth at 63, Cloutier and Chiu are tied for eleventh with 60 (same as Chau Giang), Ivey’s tied for eighteenth with 52, and Flack’s below Heimowitz at 37.

[SS] “The others in the top ten are Barry Greenstein, who moved into seventh by himself with his 64th a couple weeks ago, and Berry Johnston and Chris Ferguson, who are tied for eighth with Juanda.”

Top 10 Most WSOP Cashes4

Rank Cashes Player
1 100 Phil Hellmuth
2 80 Erik Seidel
3 79 Men Nguyen
4 72 Humberto Brenes
5 69 Daniel Negreanu
6 68 Chris Bjorin
7 64 Barry Greenstein
8 63 John Juanda
Chris Ferguson
Berry Johnston

[RR] “Doesn’t look like anyone will be catching Hellmuth anytime soon.”

[SS] “Or even in twenty years. He might slow down but can certainly keep playing into his sixties. Nobody near the top of the list is that much younger than him, but the best shot long-term might be Negreanu, who’s a decade younger and 31 cashes behind. Ivey and Cunningham are a few years younger but another 17 back.”

Top 20 Most WSOP Cashes, Younger than Hellmuth

Rank Cashes Player Age
5 69 Daniel Negreanu 39
8 63 John Juanda 42
15 58 Tony Cousineau 45
18 52 Allen Cunningham 36
Phil Ivey 37
Jeff Lissandro 46

[SS] “Some final factoids: 21 players have at least 50 cashes. 35 players, including J.C. Tran, have at least 41.5 621 players, including Amir Lehavot and David Benefield, have at least thirteen.”

Footnotes:

  1. Billy Baxter has won five of his seven bracelets in Deuce to Seven Draw (plus one in Ace to Five Draw and one in Razz).
  2. Daniel Negreanu also won WSOP Player of the Year in 2004 and is the only two-time winner. Congrats, Daniel!
  3. Robert Turner set the record from 1991 to 1994, and the streak has also been matched by Bo Sehlstedt (2004 to 2007), Theodore Park (2005 to 2008), Diogo Borges (2008 to 2011), Ronnie Bardah (2010 to 2013), and Christian Harder (2010 to 2013).
  4. As of October 24, 2013. The WSOP maintains an official, sortable list.
  5. The WSOP’s list includes payouts, so it necessarily hasn’t been updated with the results of the 2013 November Nine yet.
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Stan’s Lists – WSOP Bracelets

[SS] “Since the World Series of Poker does such an excellent job of maintaining a list of bracelet winners, I don’t keep my own copy”, Stan the Stat claimed.

[RR] “Somehow I doubt that”, Roderick the Rock countered.

[SS] “Okay, I do occasionally download the data to play around with it.”

[RR] “Find out anything interesting?”

[SS] “Obviously, Phil Hellmuth has won the most World Series of Poker bracelets,1 14.2 Doyle Brunson and Johnny Chan are tied for second with 10, but neither has won a bracelet since 2005. Phil Ivey3 and Johnny Moss are next at 9. Ivey added to his collection with a win this year in Asia, while Moss passed away in 1995. Rounding out the top 11 are Erik Seidel (8); Billy Baxter and Men Nguyen (7); and T.J. Cloutier, Layne Flack, and Jay Heimowitz (6). Of the eleven players with five bracelets, three have added one in the past five years: Daniel Negreanu, David Chiu, and John Juanda.”

[SS] “624 players have at least three bracelets, a group that J.C. Tran could join with a win at next month’s Main Event final table. Barbara Enright (2 women’s events and 1 open event5) and Nani Dollison (ditto) are the only two women who have done it.”

[SS] “159 players have at least two bracelets, a group that Amir Lehavot could join in November. Jennifer Harman became the first woman to win multiple open events6 by taking the $5,000 No-Limit Deuce-to-Seven Draw in 2000 and the $5,000 Limit Hold’em in 2002. Vanessa Selbst7 joined her in 2012. The only other women with two bracelets are Starla Brodie (one doubles event [one man and one woman] and one women’s event) and Susie Isaacs (two women’s events).”

[SS] “Five players have won three bracelets in a single year. Puggy Pearson was the first to do it, in 1973. It took two decades for anyone to match him, when amazingly both Phil Hellmuth and Ted Forrest pulled off the hat trick in 1993. Phil Ivey matched the record in 2002, and Jeff Lisandro was the last to do it, in 2009.”8

[SS] “399 players have won exactly two bracelets in a year, including Hellmuth in 2003 and Ivey in 2009. Six others have won two bracelets in a year twice: Doyle Brunson (1976 and 1977), Gary “Bones” Berland (1978 and 1979), Men Nguyen (1995 and 2003), Chris Ferguson (2000 and 2003), Layne Flack (2002 and 2003), and Tom Schneider (2007 and 2013). Dollison is the only woman to capture two bracelets in a year, when she won the Women’s Championship (No-Limit Hold’em)10 and the $2,000 Limit Hold’em event in 2001.”

[RR] “People like to bet on whether there will be a multiple winner at the WSOP; should you bet for or against it?”

[SS] “There’s been at least one every year since 2000, so you better be getting pretty good odds to go against it. Something around 10-to-1 might be fair, but I’m sure you could find someone willing to give you 20-to-1 or even 30-to-1,11 since it seems inevitable now. In reality, the 26 two-timers we’ve had since 2000 equal less than two per year. If you randomly distributed those 26 over fourteen years, you’d end up with a zero somewhere quite often (giving 13-to-1 odds) and even a couple zeroes some of the time. There are more events now than ever, but just last year the bet came down to the final hand of the Main Event! If anyone but Greg Merson had survived that final table, 2012 would have had no double-winners.”12

Footnotes:

  1. Bracelets include women’s events, seniors events, WSOP Europe events (began in 2007), and WSOP Asia events (began in 2013).
  2. Hellmuth won his 14th bracelet in the $10,000 Razz Championship on June 8, 2015.
  3. Ivey won his tenth bracelet in the $1,500 Eight Game Mixed event on June 27, 2014.
  4. On June 4, 2015, Max Pescatori became the 70th player with three WSOP bracelets.
  5. Enright was the first and still only female to reach the final table of the Main Event, finishing fifth in 1995. Four women have finished in tenth place: Barbara Samuelson (1994), Susie Isaacs (1998), Annie Duke (2000), and Gaelle Baumann (2012, one place better than Elisabeth Hille). Wikipedia incorrectly credits Enright as the first woman to win an open event, but see the next footnote.
  6. Vera Richmond was the first woman to an open event, the $1,000 Limit Ace to 5 Draw tournament in 1982. Richmond’s father was Abraham Lincoln “Al” Neiman, who co-founded Neiman Marcus in 1907 with his wife and brother-in-law.
  7. Selbst won her third bracelet on May 30, 2014, capturing the $25,000 Mixed-Max No-Limit Hold ‘Em event.
  8. George Danzer joined the elite group with three WSOP bracelets in 2014.
  9. { June 23, 2016 update } Benny Glaser’s second bracelet of 2016 brings the total number of players who won exactly two bracelets in a year to 52. Both 2015 and 2016 have had three players pull off the double.
  10. Dollison also won the women’s title the year before as well, when it was a combination of Limit Hold’em and Seven-card stud.
  11. Steve Zolotow estimated the odds at 30-to-1 last year. I think this is too high because most players don’t play that many events or are particularly good at only one type of poker.
  12. { March 11, 2016 update } George Danzer won two WSOP events in 2014, the $10,000 Seven Card Razz (Event #18) and the $10,000 Seven Card Stud Hi/Lo (Event #38). Max Pescatori, Brian Hastings, and Jonathan Duhamel (one in Europe) all won two bracelets in 2015.

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Stan’s Lists – Poker Player Nicknames Explained


[RR] “Did you know that Steve Dannenmann’s nickname is Taxman?” Roderick the Rock asked Stan.

[SS] “Of course”, Stan the Stat affirmed. “Poker Player Nicknames is another one of my favorite lists! Should’ve mentioned it earlier.”

[RR] “Such a great handle for a successful poker player. As the Beatles sang, ‘one for you, nineteen for me’. Who else is on your list?”

The Top 100 Poker Player Nicknames With Explanations

Nickname Player Explanation
Action Dan Dan Harrington Ironic nickname given his usually tight play
Amarillo Slim Thomas Preston Tall and thin, and lived in Amarillo, Texas
The Ambassador of Poker Mike Sexton Has done a lot of work to popularize poker, including television commentating for the World Poker Tour
Back to Back Layne Flack From winning consecutive Legends of Poker events in Los Angeles in 1999; a.k.a. “The Alien”
The Bald Eagle Steve Zolotow For his resemblance to the American national bird
Bird Guts Gavin Smith From his proposed professional wrestling name when his brother’s high school friends told them it would be a good profession for him; a.k.a. “Caveman”
BoostedJ Justin Smith For his love of cars (“boosted” = “turbo-charged”)
Chino David Rheem Because he looks Chinese, although he’s actually Korean-American
Chip David Reese For his ability to win most of the chips at the table
Clever Piggy Allen Cunningham Wordplay on his last name (“cunning” + “ham”)
Cowboy Hoyt Corkins Wears a cowboy hat and boots at the table; a.k.a. “Nightmare” and “Mr. Move All In”
Crazy Horse Ram Vaswani For his alternately careful and erratic playing style; a.k.a. “The Looks” from an “Esquire” magazine article
The Croc Billy Argyros Australian who wears crocodile-shaped hats and crocodile-adorned shirts
Dandy Crandell Addington Liked to wear a suit and tie at the table
Darkhorse Todd Brunson For an early tournament that he won despite being a relative unknown
Devilfish David Ulliott For the poisonous fish which can be fatal if prepared incorrectly (bestowed by Stephen Au-Yeung in 1997; “You are a devilfish, aren’t you?”)
Diamond Joe Joe Hachem Won first WPT title at the Five Diamonds Poker Classic (Bellagio)
Downtown Chad Brown Rhyme based on being born and raised in New York City
The Dragon David Pham Derived from his rail repeatedly exclaiming, “You on fire!”
The Duchess of Poker Annie Duke Wordplay on her last name
durrrr Tom Dwan Online nickname meant to help put opponents on tilt (originally used on Party Poker in 2004)
E-Dog Erick Lindgren Nicknamed in San Pablo by a Filipino player he was beating, who said, “E, you dog”
El Matador Carlos Mortensen Born in Ecuador but raised in Spain
ElkY Bertrand Grospellier Short for “Elkantar”, his RPG character (Grospellier was formerly a top WarCraft [and StarCraft] player)
Eskimo Paul Clark Looks like the eskimo on the Alaskan Airlines logo
The Finn Patrick Antonius Born and raised in Finland
The First Lady of Poker Linda Johnson For her long poker career and other work in the industry (bestowed by Mike Sexton)
The Flying Dutchman Marcel Luske Born in the Netherlands
Fordman Dennis Phillips Sold Ford trucks
Fossilman Greg Raymer Collects fossils and uses a trilobite as a card protector
Foucault Andrew Brokos Online nickname from the French philosopher, Michel Foucault, as Brokos majored in philosophy
Full Blown Tilt Greg Mueller For his explosive conduct at the table; a.k.a. “FBT” for short
Furst Out Rafe Furst Wordplay on his last name from the 2003 WSOP Main Event, when it took him only 11 minutes to become the first player to bust out
Gentleman Jack Jack Keller Ironic nickname from his days as a stock boy
Golden Boy Jamie Gold Wordplay on his last name and his youthful appearance
The Grand Old Man Johnny Moss One of the first Texas Hold ‘Em players, and winner of the first two World Series of Poker crowns
Grand Rapids Tom Tom McEvoy Born in Grand Rapids, Michigan
The Great Dane Gus Hansen Born in Denmark
The Greek Jimmy Snyder Greek-American (born as Dimetrios Georgios Synodinos)
The Grinder Michael Mizrachi Solid, consistent player who “grinds” his way through tournaments
Happy Jeff Shulman For his positive disposition
Hot Chips Tiffany Michelle For her poker chip tricks and the “M*A*S*H” character Major Margaret “Hot Lips” Houlihan
Iceman Huck Seed For his extremely calm demeanor
Iceman Jeff Lisandro For his cold and calculating play
Isildur1 Viktor Blom Online nickname from “The Lord of the Rings” character1
Isser Peter Eastgate His real-life nickname (I don’t know what it means though); a.k.a. “Icegate”
Jennicide Jennifer Leigh From her teenage alias on hacking bulletin boards
Jesus Chris Ferguson Looks like Jesus Christ
Joan Chip Jett For the “I Love Rock and Roll” singer
Johnny World John Hennigan Supposedly will bet on anything in the world
The Kid Joe Cada Became youngest WSOP Main Event champion at age 21 in 2009
The Kid Stu Ungar Became youngest WSOP Main Event champion at age 26 in 1980 (surpassed by Phil Hellmuth in 1989) and looked even younger; a.k.a. “Stuey” and “The Comeback Kid”
Kid Poker Daniel Negreanu Became youngest WSOP bracelet winner at age 23 in 1998 (broken in 2004); also very young looking, with child-like enthusiasm for the game
The King Amir Vahedi Wordplay on his first name, which means an independent ruler or chieftain?
The Knife Martin de Knijff Wordplay on his last name for his playing style
Kwikfish Paul Wasicka Nicknamed by a frustrated online opponent
Lady Maverick Vanessa Rousso From a $25,000 buy-in tournament in which she sold off shares of herself, like in the Mel Gibson version of the movie “Maverick” (bestowed by a relative); a.k.a. “Pokerness”
Luckbox John Juanda For his apparent good fortune at cards; a.k.a. “JJ”
Mad Genius of Poker Mike Caro For his deep-thinking strategy
The Magician Antonio Esfandiari Formerly a professional magician
The Master Men Nguyen Nicknamed “The Young Master” by one of his poker students in 1991, but he retorted that he wasn’t young
The Mathematician David Sklansky For his logical, mathematical approach to the game
Miami John Cernuto Lives in Miami, Florida
Mister Cool Sammy Farha For his demeanor; often keeps an unlit cigarette in his mouth
Mixed Games Kristy Gazes For her preferred type of poker
Money Chris Moneymaker Abbreviation of his last name
The Monk Andy Black Renounced all his possessions and lived as a Buddhist monk for five years
The Mouth Mike Matusow For his loquaciousness
The Mouth from Down Under Tony Guoga For his loquaciousness; a.k.a. “Tony G”
Napoleon David Benyamine Born in Paris, France; a.k.a. Degenyamine
Noel J.J. Furlong Born on Christmas Day
Numbers Berry Johnston For his calculating play?
The Orient Express Johnny Chan Born in China; a.k.a. “The Orangeman”, as he usually has an orange with him (originally to counter the then-pervasive cigarette smoke)
The Owl Bobby Baldwin For his ability to read his opponents’ cards; with his eyeglasses, looks like an owl (possibly bestowed by Doyle Brunson)
Poker Babe Erica Schoenberg For her looks
The Poker Brat Phil Hellmuth For his immature rants, often aimed at his opponent’s perceived poor play
PokerKat Kathy Liebert Wordplay on her first name
The Prince of Poker Scotty Nguyen From his fashion style (lots of bling) and attitude; a.k.a. “The Train”
The Professor Howard Lederer For his calculated, studious approach to the game (bestowed by poker player and commentator Jesse May); a.k.a. “Bubs” (was “Bubba” before he had gastric bypass surgery)
Professor Backwards Ted Forrest For his unconventional style of play; a.k.a. “The Suicide King”, “The Hitman”, and “Spooky”
Puggy Walter Pearson From a childhood accident that disfigured his nose; a.k.a. “Puggy Wuggy”
Raptor David Benefield From his AOL Instant Messenger name that he chose when he was only ten years old; a.k.a. “Bebop86” for the anime series “Cowboy Bebop”
The Razor John Phan Wordplay on “raiser” for his sharp play (also was a fan of the Razor phone)
Robin Hood of Poker Barry Greenstein For several years, donated all his tournament winnings to charity; since 2006 has donated his net earnings instead
The Rock Andy Bloch Rhyme based on his generally tight play
Sailor Bryan Roberts Served in the U.S. Navy during the Korean War
Seiborg Erik Seidel For his calculating play; a.k.a. “Sly”
The Shadow Jerry Yang Because “he was like their shadows that followed them everywhere” (bestowed by fellow players)
Shaniac Shane Schleger Wordplay on his first name plus “Maniac”
The Shark Humberto Brenes From his shark card protector
Sominex Mark Gregorich For his blandness, which will knock you out like the sleeping pill
Supernova Dario Minieri For the top status in PokerStars’ VIP program
Taxman Steve Dannenmann From his job as a CPA
Texas Dolly Doyle Brunson Born and raised in Texas; “Dolly” came from Jimmy “The Greek” Snyder’s mispronunciation of “Doyle”; a.k.a. “The Godfather of Poker”
The Tiger Woods of Poker Phil Ivey For being at the top of his profession like the golfer; a.k.a. “Poison”, wordplay on his last name, and “No Home Jerome”, for his fake ID when he played underage in Atlantic City
Tiltboy Phil Gordon From his California poker group known as the Tiltboys; a.k.a. “Tallphil”
Treetop Jack Straus 6’6″ tall former basketball player
Unabomber Phil Laak Looks like murderer Ted Kaczynski when he wears a gray sweat jacket zipped all the way up, with the hood over his head, and sunglasses hiding his eyes
Whatta Player Kenny Smith For his repeated expression “what a player”, which he would yell while waving his hat whenever he won a pot
X-22 Paul Magriel As a professional backgammon player, he played a practice tournament against himself, which player X-22 won.

Footnotes:

  1. In 2009, Blom was only identified by his handle yet was competing successfully at the highest online stakes. His real identity wasn’t revealed until 2011, after he had signed on with PokerStars.

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Stan’s Lists – Steve Dannenmann’s Advice

[SS] “Although he wasn’t a professional poker player, Steve Dannenmann put together an excellent crib sheet for playing in the 2005 WSOP Main Event, where he finished second to Joe Hachem”, Stan the Stat remarked. “He scrawled some notes1 on a sheet of paper, which he kept in his pocket, reread every couple hours, and consulted as necessary. The front began with:

  1. Have fun
  2. Nothing to lose
  3. Play tight
  4. Don’t flat call a re-raise

And the back ended with, “Not calling a raise is only a small mistake”.2

[RR] “I remember him reading those notes to the table as he was working through a tough decision, and that last nugget helped him correctly fold his Ace-Ten to Hachem’s Ace-Jack.”

[SS] “It worked out pretty well for him, so he later expanded the list and laminated it:”3

  1. Have fun; you have nothing to lose.
  2. Observe other players.
  3. Patience: play tight.
  4. Play hands that make money.
  5. Slow your betting; think about it.
  6. You don’t win the tournament at the first level.
  7. If they commit 1/2 their stack, they are all in.
  8. Avoid coin flips with the big stack.
  9. Don’t raise the reraiser unless a big hand.
  10. Don’t move all in after the flop unless you have the nuts with opponent’s draws.4
  11. Not calling a raise is only a small mistake.

[RR] “Great stuff! I don’t think I ever read his entire original list (they only showed it briefly on camera), but this updated list is definitely a keeper.”

Footnotes:

  1. Dannenmann had been reading Dan Harrington’s Harrington on Hold ’em, Volume II: The Endgame just before the Main Event.
  2. You can watch him read most of those items in the ESPN broadcast.
  3. The updated version appeared in All In magazine.
  4. The list actually says, “unless you have nuts w/opp draws”, so I hope this is the correct interpretation.
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