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Did you know that these celebs played poker?
|June 12, 2014 Matt Damon, Shannon Elizabeth, Andriy Shevchenko, Ronaldo, Tobey Maguire, Jason Alexander, Daniel Negreanu, John Malkovich|
Today, the number of people playing online poker is huge, and many people play poker at their favourite site on an almost daily basis. The possibility of playing poker games at home or wherever you have internet connection means that the games have been opened up to millions of people who might never have gone to a land-based casino to play.
The funny thing about playing online poker is that you never know who you might be playing against. There are lots of people out there who consider themselves to be poker pros, and make a living out of playing online poker. If you’re a beginner, you’re less likely to be playing these guys as they tend to play the higher stakes games. But you may draw your chair up to the virtual poker table at a site like Full Tilt Poker and be playing a celebrity too. There are lots of celebs who get involved in live poker tournaments, and they’re bound to put in some practice time at the online poker sites too. Of course, as everyone has a username online, it would be easy enough for a celeb to disguise their identity, so you’ll probably never know if you’ve played someone famous or not.
Below are just a few examples of some of the famous faces that have been spotted at live poker events over the years.
Actor Matt Damon is a big poker fan and has taken part in World Series of Poker events. He played a lot of poker to improve his knowledge of the game when preparing for his role in Rounders, the 1998 film he starred in alongside Ed Norton and John Malkovich.
Jason Alexander is best-known for his role as George Costanza in the Seinfeld series, but he’s also been seen in a variety of TV poker tournaments, such as Celebrity Poker Showdown and Poker After Dark. One of the most recent poker events he took part in was the 2014 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure, which took place in January this year.
Tobey Maguire is probably best known for his role as Spiderman, but he’s also rumoured to be a pretty cool poker-player too. The last recorded cash win for Maguire was back in 2007 when he took part in the WSOP Main Event, finishing 292nd and taking home almost $40,000.
American Pie actress Shannon Elizabeth enjoys going to Vegas to play poker on a regular basis and also has taken part in charity poker events such as the 2010 WSOP Ante Up For Africa Charity Event. She finished second, winning almost $80,000. Elizabeth has also participated in the $25,000 buy-in NBC National Heads-Up Championship, and came third in the 2007 series. The NBC championship was the first poker event that was televised and produced by a major US TV network and it ran from 2005 to 2011. Although there was no 2012 event, the show returned in 2013.
It’s not just actors who have a taste for playing poker, though. There are a number of sports celebrities who have also shown that they can turn their hand to playing poker too.
Rafa Nadal is just one example. Although his current focus will be on tennis, trying to win the French Open for a record fifth consecutive time and then looking ahead to the Wimbledon Championships that are coming up at the end of June, Rafa has also recently demonstrated his poker playing ability. At the 2013 EPT Prague Poker Festival, Nadal competed for the first time in a live poker tournament, playing against one of the world’s best poker professionals, Daniel Negreanu, as well as footballers Ronaldo and Andriy Shevchenko and Dutch Olympic hockey gold medallist, Fatima Moriera de Melo. Nadal won the tournament and was then able to donate the €$50,000 prize to his chosen charity.
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By: Maverine Lane
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