Chris Moneymaker just gave poker fans a major case of déjà vu. PocketFives reports that he won a seat in the WSOP Main Event through an online satellite again. So far it’s eerily similar to 2003…
What is the Moneymaker Effect?
In 2003, a simple accountant from New Jersey won a seat in the biggest poker tournament in the world, the WSOP Main Event. He made it through a $86 online satellite.
Moneymaker entered the 839-player field far from being the favorite to win.
He had to face some of poker’s greatest, including two-time Main Event champion Johnny Chan who he actually knocked out of the tournament.
However, despite all odds, he went on to win poker’s most coveted title and $2.5 million with it.
His underdog story, partly thanks to his catchy last name, blew up in the national media. This resulted in an unprecedented boost to poker’s popularity.
As we wrote, the 2003 Main Event drew 839 entries. The next year, that number ballooned up to 2,576. Traffic on online poker sites tripled as well.
Interestingly, during that satellite tournament that changed the course of poker history, Moneymaker wasn’t even trying to win.
He later said that he was actually going for the 4th place prize which was $8,000 cash, while the top 3 got $10,000 Main Event tickets.
“Unfortunately” for him, another player had the same idea – as they expressed in the tournament chatbox.
Chris Moneymaker Repeats History
The 2003 world champion confirmed to pocketfives.com that he in fact won another seat in the Main Event in an online satellite. This time, he paid $80 to enter the tourney on WSOP.com.
If he manages to repeat his 2003 feat, which is incredibly unlikely, he would be the first player to win the Main Event as a former champion since Stu Ungar in 1997.
Last year, 33-year-old American poker pro John Cynn took home the title. If he wins again this year, he would be the first player to defend the World Series Main Event bracelet since Johnny Chan in 1988.
Since this is the golden jubilee for the World Series of Poker, there’s a little extra attention paid to it nationwide. This resulted in higher numbers of entries during this year’s series – think of the record breaking 28,000 in the Big 50 event.
This means that the Main Event first place payout is likely to exceed last year’s $8.8 million. Chris Moneymaker can get a really nice ROI on that $80 satellite ticket if he repeats 2003.
More Good News for Chris Moneymaker
The WSOP celebrated its 50th anniversary with a star-studded gala. They awarded the very best in the series’ history that night in the Rio.
Moneymaker took home three awards.
— Chris Moneymaker (@CMONEYMAKER) June 30, 2019
He won ‘Most Memorable TV Hand’ for his ‘Bluff of the Century’ against Sammy Farha. He also got the ‘Most Impressive WSOP Main Event Win’ award, and received a trophy for being in the ‘Four Most Important Players in WSOP History.’
You can watch his historical bluff in the 2003 Main Event against Farha below.
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