Doyle Brunson was born in Texas on August 10, 1933. He has been playing poker professionally for over 50 years, a very long and well lived life he has had. He has had many successes throughout his long poker career, as was he also the first of many to accomplish great things in poker. When he was a young boy Brunson was very athletic, he would run long distance, and he really enjoyed playing basketball. He actually preferred basketball to running; he was very talented at both sports. Doyle Brunson was even being scouted by the Minneapolis Lakers if you can believe that; however a knee injury ended his basketball career before it began. Brunson attained a bachelor’s degree in Education, after he switched from athletics, and later got a master’s in Administrative Education. He already had a knack for playing poker, he was already playing before he got injured, but he would not play as often. After getting a job as a salesman, he was invited to play seven-card stud, where he won over a month’s salary in almost 3 hours; he decided then and there to quit and become a professional poker player.
Doyle Brunson; The Legend’s Poker History
Doyle Brunson is a legend in the poker scene; this is why he has several nicknames, “Texas Dolly”, “Big Papa”, and “The Godfather”. He has been around since the creation of the World Series of Poker in 1970. This is where he got most of his fame and fortune, although it isn’t limited to just that. He has been playing the Main Event almost every year. He was the first poker player to win $1 million playing in poker tournaments, as well as being the first player to ever be a two-time consecutive champ of the Main Event at the WSOP. He is an inductee of the Poker Hall of Fame, and has written various books about poker.
Following his career while playing at the WSOP, he has won a total of 10 bracelets. His first two bracelets came from his win at the 1976 WSOP in two different events; in the Deuce to Seven Draw and the No Limit Hold'em World Championship where he won a total of $310,250. His next two bracelets came from the next years WSOP tournaments, and this is when he got his consecutive win at the Main Event and making off with a little over $400,000. Take into account that this was the 1970’s, that kind of money is the equivalent to millions now. He won again in 1978 playing the Seven–Card Stud and again in 1979, playing alongside Starla Brodie in Mixed Doubles. Sometime past before he won his next bracelets. He resurfaced and was able to win in the 1991 and 1998 WSOP making off with over $300,000. His last two tournament wins came in 2003 and 2005; he played H.O.R.S.E. and No Limit Shorthanded Texas Hold'em.
Doyle Brunson Family Ties and Other Interests
Mr. Brunson is a known as a very family oriented man. He got married in 1962 and had three children. Sadly, his oldest daughter, Doyla, died at the age of 18 when she took too much potassium for a heart condition. His other two children, Todd and Pamela have taken up the family business, playing a mean game of poker. Todd became a professional poker player and has even won a bracelet at the 2005 WSOP. His daughter Pamela played in the 2007 and 2009 WSOP main events, where she outlasted both Brunson and Todd. It would seem his whole family likes to play poker.
Brunson’s other interests include writing various books on poker. One of his earlier books, Super/System, was a game changing book. It gave average players powerful insight into how poker professionals played and won. An updated version of this same book, Super/System 2, was published in 2004 and was a huge project in which many other poker professionals helped in writing. He also wrote Poker Wisdom of a Champion. He has managed to make his fortune off of playing poker, and has helped many others get better at poker through his books.
Doyle Brunson’s Overall Success
He made his fame and fortune playing at the World Series of Poker, and is where he has won 10 bracelets. Along with that he has also had 35 money finishes, which account for roughly one-third of his total live tournament winnings. During his two consecutive wins in 1976 and 1977, he also managed to have the highest ITM main even finish during those two years. His total live tournament winnings are over $6 million. He also participated in the WPT and European Poker Tour. At the WPT he has won a title, gotten to 3 final tables, and had 8 money finishes. He has hardly participated in the EPT, where he has only had one money finish. Doyle Brunson is truly a legend in the poker world, and has helped mold it for future generations.