In the realm of casino games, many consider poker as the ultimate game of skill and wit, demanding a refined strategy and high level of technical ability from its players. From its humble origins dating back to the mid- 18th century in the Mississippi River region of the United States, where it was played in saloons and steamboats, to the more contemporary version played online in virtual poker rooms, poker has established itself as the quintessential card game.
Poker has become an increasingly popular pastime for many people around the world, with televised high-stakes live events and tournaments providing increased exposure on what many consider an art form and not just a trivial hobby. The last few decades have produced some of the most notable players to have ever graced the green felt of the poker table, many of whom have interesting backstories and incredible accomplishments that make up part of their legendary status.
Although countless players have won and lost both their names and fortunes over the years, only a handful of elite poker players can confidently lay claim to the title of being amongst the best poker players in the world. However, when it comes to the singular title of Greatest Poker Player of All Time, the subject is hotly debated and highly subjective.
Below is our list of some of the best poker players in the world- some have earned their spot by being the largest all-time money winner and others by being the most respected and admired within the international poker scene. Whether they started out playing at Canadian casinos online, or at tables at home with friends, these players have earned their spot at the top.
1. Daniel Negreanu
Canada’s Daniel Negreanu takes the title of current highest earning poker professional, winning over $32 million in a live tournament. Affectionately named Kid Poker, this Toronto native originally had aspirations of being a professional snooker player before mastering the art of poker. Not only is he the current highest-earner but he is also the most watched tournament player of all time. In 1998, he won the World Series of Poker, making him the youngest winner at the time. He has since won various world titles and accolades and was inducted into the World Series Of Poker Hall of Fame in 2014.
2. David “Chip” Reese
Born in Ohio, USA in 1951, David “Chip” Reese is widely regarded as a legend throughout the international poker community. As a sickly child suffering from rheumatic fever, he spent a year at home during elementary school where his mother taught him how to play several card games. Reese himself has acknowledged that he honed his card skills during this time and was said to have beaten fifth-graders at poker when he was just six years old.
During college, he won so much money from fellow students that his fraternity later named their chapter card room after him in his honour. During the 1970’s he settled permanently in Las Vegas, where he built a reputation for being one of the best cash game players. The years that followed saw him claim three WSOP bracelets, as well as being inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame. One of his most notable achievements was his victory at the 2006 H.O.R.S.E poker event. This tournament is well known throughout the poker scene for demanding extensive levels of poker ability from its players and combines the five variations of poker- making it one of the hardest tournaments to win. Reese passed away unexpectedly at the age of 56 in 2007, but he remains a legend in the poker world.