Poker players throughout history have all cut their own furrow when it comes to fashion.
They all have their distinct style that in some cases is as synonymous with them as their poker play. Some prefer comfortable clothing, arguably dressing down. Others use glasses to mask their tells or to avoid the gaze of opponents. It couldn’t be further away from the stereotypical image that some may form in their head that poker players are clad, Bond-style in a dinner jacket, looking suave and stylish.
To further dispel that theory, all you have to do is turn on the TV at the moment and take a glimpse at the 2021 edition of the World Series of Poker which is taking place in Las Vegas. There are so many styles allowed at the table, some more recognizable than others. One of those familiar faces is Phil Hellmuth. Hellmuth, who recently won his 16th World Series of Poker Bracelet, is well known for sporting a sponsored baseball cap, casual jacket or logo-filled shirt and headphones. Arguably it’s an outfit more befitting a visit to watch a college football team than being something seen at the poker table. But it works for the ‘Poker Brat’, so there’s undoubtedly method in his choices.
The World Series of Poker has been in existence since 1970, and during that time there have been some real trendsetters who are certainly memorable for a host of reasons. We’ve selected a handful of those players with different styles, and maybe it’s something you’d like to try if you’re heading to the casino?
To give him his full name, Huckleberry Seed was a star of the basketball court before he headed into the World Series of Poker. The 6ft 7inch former Caltech student took to the game after leaving education behind, and his former sporting endeavours certainly influenced the style he brought to the table. After just seven years in the game, Seed was to win the first of his four WSOP bracelets all the while adorning himself in various styles of sports clothing. From sponsored sleeveless jerseys, to ice hockey and soccer jerseys his love of team sports always shone brightly at the table.
Brunson is regarded as one of the greatest poker players of all time and for anyone who recalls him at the table the first thing they would likely remember is his Wild West-style outfit. The resident of Las Vegas loved nothing more than wearing a Stetson, brown shirt, jeans and cowboy boots at the table. His back-to-back bracelet wins in the late 70s was the start of a distinguished career that saw him win ten titles in total, which has him tied for the second-most in the history of the World Series of Poker.
If Brunson was the first man to wear a cowboy hat, then Ferguson was the player who brought it into the modern era of the game at the turn of the millennium. With his trademark long hair, beard, leather jacket and more often than not he wore sunglasses too to conceal his poker face. ‘Jesus’ as he was affectionately nicknamed, was a true competitor at the table. His formidable look matched his gameplay as he won six titles in seventeen years.
Eastgate is certainly a player who focussed on comfort over style. The 2008 World Series winner, couldn’t have been more casual in his run to the $2million first prize. Throughout the tournament he wore a hoodie, often unzipped and looking quite disheveled, with his baseball cap turned backwards. But it was accented by quite a large wristwatch, which looked a little out of place. Although Eastgate looked more like he’s just turned up to skate the halfpipe, it certainly did him no harm as he became the youngest ever player to gain a World Series of Poker title.
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