Top Earning Poker Players

WSOP Titles WPT Titles EPT Titles Poker Earnings
1 Erik Seidel USA Erik Seidel 8 1 0 $21,499,344
2 Phil Ivey USA Phil Ivey 9 1 0 $17,649,220
3 John Juanda Indonesia John Juanda 5 0 0 $15,113,768
4 Allen Cunningham USA Allen Cunningham 5 0 0 $12,031,743
5 Carlos Mortensen Spain Carlos Mortensen 2 3 0 $11,598,083
6 Gus Hansen Denmark Gus Hansen 1 4 0 $11,240,678
7 JC Tran profile picture USA JC Tran 2 1 0 $10,416,658
8 Erick Lindgren USA Erick Lindgren 2 2 0 $9,881,849
9 Mike Matusow USA Mike Matusow 4 0 0 $8,974,373
10 Chris Ferguson USA Chris Ferguson 5 0 0 $8,281,926
11 Vanessa Selbst profile picture USA Vanessa Selbst 2 0 0 $8,018,466
12 Paul Wasicka USA Paul Wasicka 0 0 0 $7,896,100
13 Huck Seed USA Huck Seed 5 0 0 $7,582,816
14 David Benyamine France David Benyamine 1 1 0 $7,047,146
15 Howard Lederer USA Howard Lederer 2 2 0 $6,571,538
16 Gavin Smith Canada Gavin Smith 1 1 0 $5,959,186
17 Kathy Liebert profile picture USA Kathy Liebert 0 0 0 $5,929,521
18 Andy Bloch USA Andy Bloch 1 0 0 $5,415,383
19 John Cernuto USA John Cernuto 3 0 0 $5,352,640
20 Roland de Wolfe United Kingdom Roland de Wolfe 1 1 1 $5,330,556
21 Robert Mizrachi USA Robert Mizrachi 1 0 0 $4,498,967
22 Andy Black Ireland Andy Black 0 0 0 $4,432,368
23 Annie Duke profile picture USA Annie Duke 1 0 0 $4,270,549
24 Lee Watkinson USA Lee Watkinson 1 0 0 $4,146,149
25 Jeff Madsen USA Jeff Madsen 3 0 0 $4,054,686
26 Annette Obrestad profile picture Norway Annette Obrestad 1 0 0 $3,910,678
27 Vanessa Rousso profile picture USA Vanessa Rousso 0 0 1 $3,513,841
28 Max Pescatori Italy Max Pescatori 2 0 0 $3,322,683
29 Phil Gordon USA Phil Gordon 0 1 0 $2,786,896
30 Jennifer Harman USA Jennifer Harman 2 0 0 $2,697,533
31 Joanne Liu profile picture Taiwan Joanne Liu 0 0 0 $2,678,069
32 Greg Mueller Canada Greg Mueller 2 0 0 $2,621,740
33 Liv Boeree profile picture United Kingdom Liv Boeree 0 0 1 $2,281,097
34 Tom Dwan profile picture USA Tom Dwan 0 0 0 $2,213,937
35 Sandra Naujoks profile picture Germany Sandra Naujoks 0 0 1 $1,789,239
36 Victoria Coren profile picture United Kingdom Victoria Coren 0 0 1 $1,745,178
37 Clonie Gowen USA Clonie Gowen 0 1 0 $1,639,064
38 Viktor Blom Profile picture Sweden Viktor Blom 0 0 0 $1,527,299
39 Eddy Scharf Germany Eddy Scharf 2 0 0 $1,327,119
40 Erica Schoenberg USA Erica Schoenberg 0 0 0 $848,458
41 Aaron Bartley USA Aaron Bartley 0 0 0 $215,777

The Lucrative Game of Poker

There is a lot of money to be made in the poker world. You can see that just from our rankings above, with players who have tournament poker earnings of 10 or 20 million dollars. It is possible to rack up a sizeable personal fortune if you have the skills to regularly win poker events, or even if you have a good run at one large poker event and walk away with a monstrous and sometimes outrageous prize.

This is very different to the old days of poker, where winners of large tournaments would still walk away with very good prizes, but would be more like a few hundred thousand dollars rather than the many millions of today’s game.

This is largely due to the influx of poker players over the past decade, with the transition of the sport to a game played behind closed doors, into a main stream sport that is televised and shown all over the world. Some of the large events in the poker calendar attract fields of thousands of players, and the more players, the bigger the prize pool.

The World Series of Poker Main Event

The World Series of Poker main event still offers one of the biggest prizes in poker. This is due to the massive field generated by the tournament. The field, which ranges from 6,000 to 9,000 each year has to be split over a number of starting days, as the full field cannot fit into the massive WSOP tournament space at the Rio, in Las Vegas.

The huge fields are partly driven by the prestige of the being the headline poker event of the year, but also by the quantity of people who qualify for the event via smaller buy in online satellite tournaments run by online poker sites.

Of course these huge fields are all paying $10,000 to enter the tournament which generates a outrageous prize pool. The biggest was in 2006 with a prize pool of $82.5million and a first prize of $12million.

The WSOP One Drop – Biggest Prize in Poker

In 2012, the World Series of Poker introduce a new event. It was a high rollers $1million buy in tournament which was 4 times the next biggest buy in tournament. The event attracted the biggest professional poker players in the sport together with other wealthy people including at least 2 billionaires.

There were 48 entrants, and eventual winner Antonio Esfandiari took home a 1st place prize of $18.3million, with even 2nd placed Sam Trickett taking home a sizeable $10million.

The event generated a massive amount of Buzz in the poker world and in the main stream press, culminating in the biggest spectacle the poker world has ever seen, with a broadcast on ESPN, showgirls and piles and piles of cash.

Online Poker – The Internet Poker Millionaire

Online Poker allows anybody to sit at their computer, or on their tablet on the sofa and play online poker. The rise in popularity of online poker has lead to regular high payout tournaments where players can enter for quite a modest fee and win prizes of hundreds of thousands, or even millions.

Regular tournaments take place at the big online poker sites, such as the Pokerstars Sunday Million which takes place every Sunday night, with a guaranteed prize pool of $1million for a relatively small buy in of $215. This guarantee is usually smashed and a much larger prize pool results. Many similar weekly tournaments take place but this is the largest.

There are also Online Tournament Series which regularly occur and mirror the festival feel of the World Series of Poker by running a series of events, of varying buy in amounts and various formats of poker. The biggest two of these are the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP) run by Pokerstars which in 2013 had a guaranteed prize pool of $40million over 66 events and the Full Tilt Online Poker Series (FTOPS) run by Full Tilt Poker.