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Megabucks: Charting The Biggest Poker Wins Ever
No-limit Texas Hold’em Poker is one of the most popular high-profile casino games around. Big tournaments attract big viewership and deliver big prizes.

The Biggest Poker Wins In History

Poker is now a casino stalwart. The popularity of Texas Hold’em and other poker varieties has made poker tournaments a regular drawcard for many casinos.

High-profile poker tournaments also include a charity component: in 2019, for instance, the Triton London: A Helping Hand for Charity event had a record buy-in of £1.05 million per player, or around $1.28-million. However, £50,000 from every entry fee, or almost $61,000 per player and $3.3 million in total, was donated to charity.

The biggest winners regularly take home more than $10 million in modern poker tournaments. Here is a list of the six heftiest poker wins made to date.

Sam Trickett: $10,112,001

The sixth-biggest prize ever won in poker, this was not even the biggest poker win scored in 2012, which was an extraordinary year for both the card game and betting nz. Englishman Trickett’s second-place win at the inaugural Big One for One Drop tournament in Las Vegas, another charity event, also included a hand in which he beat Brian Rast’s made flush with quad threes on the river.

Jamie Gold: $12,000,000

The World Series of Poker’s Main Event is one of the reasons poker now attracts viewers and punters from around the world. It has been running since the 1970s, costs $10,000 for players to buy in, and runs with no-limit betting. Gold’s 2006 WSOP Main Event win is even more remarkable considering he started against a field of more than 8,700 players; a tenth of that number compete in most modern tournaments.

Elton Tsang $12,248,912

The Big One for One Drop game created another massive winner in 2016, when it was held in Monte Carlo. Chinese-Canadian player Tsang scooped the pot, which was worth over $6-million more than the runner-up prize.

Daniel Colman $15,306,668

The Big One for One Drop tournament has become an annual feature of the WSOP, and it produced another huge winner in 2014. Daniel Colman took home the third-biggest prize in poker history, in a year when he would net more than $21 million in total prize money.

Antonio Esfandiari $18,346,673

Nicknamed “The Magician”, Esfandiari, an American like Trickett, Colman and Gold, was the ruler of 2012 poker. He went head to head against Sam Trickett in that year’s Big One for One Drop finale: knowing that the loser took home more than $10 million tells you all you need to know about that game. Esfandiari, who pulled off a magical win to justify his sobriquet, walked away with over $18 million; at the time the biggest prize ever won in poker. It’s a record many thought would stand forever. But then…

Aaron Zang / Bryn Kenny >$37,000,000

The Triton London: A Helping Hand for Charity tournament in 2019 produced a unique situation and a poker record. The original first prize was meant to be £19-million, or around $23 million. However, with Hong Kong player Zang facing off against American Bryn Kenny in the final stages, the pair agreed to chop the pot. Since Kenny was leading about 4 to 1 in chips, he got the bigger payout in pounds: equivalent to around $20.6 million. Zang took around $16.8 million… and then ironically, went on to win the tournament.
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