As I watched, and thoroughly enjoyed the 2018 World Series of Poker, especially the Final Table at the Main Event and the Big One for One Drop, I thought it might be fun to take a more in-depth look at four poker players who not only amassed a whole lot of on-screen time, but also some incredible amounts of prize money as well.
The first poker player I want to focus on is, of course, Justin Bonomo. After winning the Super High Roller Bowl China for $4.8 million, he then won the $300,000 buy-in Super High Roller Bowl for a whopping $5 million. At the 2018 WSOP he went on to win his second bracelet in the $10,000 Heads-Up Championship plus cashing in a few $25,000 High Rollers at the Aria before entering the $1,000,000 buy-in The Big One for One Drop at the WSOP.
When asked about his amazing streak thus far, Bonomo said, “I have been on the streak of a lifetime, obviously never expected anything like this. I think I am a great player but what I have done is above and beyond what I ever expected or even deserved, to be honest.”
So how did the 32-year-old prepare to play in the $1 million tournament, which he called a great privilege and responsibility? He meditated daily, studied hard and got a lot of rest to be as prepared as possible for the buy-in size and skill level of the field. He also thought about something else: the all-time money list, saying:“it would be kind of sweet if I passed Negreanu.”
After conquering the The Big One for One Drop and winning $10 million, Bonomo made poker history by moving into first place on the All-Time Money List. ( and indeed, surpassing my main man, @Real Kid Poker, in the process). In fact, with this win, Bonomo has locked up the biggest year in the history of poker, eclipsing the $22.3 million-year Dan Colman had back in 2014.
I’m very proud of what I’ve accomplished but I don’t let it get to my head, Bonomo stated. I understand that results don’t mean that I’m the best player in the world and I don’t actually think that I’m the best player in the world. I certainly think I’m up there but I’m going to try not to let the results go to my head.”
Fortunately, Bonomo’s father was in attendance to watch his son win the biggest tournament of his career. After previous trophies and bracelets wound up in the hands of Bonomo’s mother, this one went right to his dad. “It feels really nice to be able to give him an extra special bracelet so he’ll have something to keep of his own,” Bonomo said.
After his history-making run, Bonomo plans to take some much-needed time off, including a return visit to Burning Man.
I best start practicing harder and spend longer hours at our poker table if I want to wrap a WSOP bracelet around my wrist.