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2011 WSOP Rookie Roundup: Taylor von Kriegenbergh

Taylor von Kriegenbergh

The first run-in PokerNews had with Taylor von Kriegenbergh was in São Paulo, Brazil, for a Latin American Poker Tour event. Von Kriegenbergh introduced himself to us at the opening party but didn’t last too long in the Main Event, busting out on Day 1 after his pocket aces went down. He promptly went back to his hotel room and won a seat to The Big Event in Los Angeles. There, von Kriegenbergh had a much, much better showing.

Von Kriegenbergh found his way to the final table in L.A. sitting third in chips. He was able to ride it all the way to a fourth-place finish for $140,000, the first cash on his tournament résumé. Next up after that result was a deep run in the North American Poker Tour Main Event at Mohegan Sun. Von Kriegenbergh maneuvered all the way to the final 18 players, but bowed out there. He scored $12,000 for his 18th-place finish out of the 387-player field.

At the very same stop, von Kriegenbergh decided to jump into the High-Roller Bounty Shootout thanks to a late-night run at the blackjack tables the night before. He showed up confident and was able to win his first table. At the final table, von Kriegenbergh went out in fifth place and earned himself a total of $44,000. That put his career total at $196,000, but he wasn’t done there, as his biggest splash was yet to come.

The Boston native opted to head to Florida for the inaugural World Poker Tour Seminole Hard Rock Showdown. Von Kriegenbergh didn’t play Day 1, opting to only show up for the second day of play. Still, it didn’t matter. He took a big chip lead into the final table, which included former WPT champion Tommy Vedes and young professional Allen Bari. Von Kriegenbergh topped them all and walked away with the $1,122,340 first-place prize, clearly putting his stamp on the poker world.

Online, von Kriegenbergh plays under the name “TheRiverHawk,” which comes from his college baseball team. Speaking of baseball, everyone knows how superstitious players can be, and von Kriegenbergh is no different. Throughout the course of the live events he plays, von Kriegenbergh makes it a habit to replicate the same routine every morning.

The 2011 World Series of Poker will be von Kriegenbergh’s first go-round at the gauntlet and he’s in top form heading in. Confidence is a very big thing in poker and von Kriegenbergh has a lot of that thanks to his four big cashes to lead off his poker career and 2011 for over $1.3 million. He’s already proven that he knows how to run deep, make final tables and win. Not it’s time to prove he’s ready for WSOP glory.

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