2021 WSOP Online
Settings

Chris Moneymaker

United StatesUnited States

Latest Videos with Chris Moneymaker

Biography

Chris Moneymaker is an American poker player who won the 2003 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event.

He is best known for causing the poker boom, with the so-called 'Moneymaker Effect' following his 2003 win triggering a sudden growth in interest in poker, and saw the WSOP Main Event grow from 639 players to 8,773 in just three years.

Moneymaker was inducted into Poker Hall of Fame in 2019.

Biography

Moneymaker was born in Atlanta, Georgia on November 21, 1975. He attended the University of Tennessee, earning a master's degree in accounting. He was working as an accountant prior to the 2003 World Series of Poker (WSOP).


Read More: Pros Discuss How Moneymaker's WSOP Main Event Win Changed the Poker Landscape


2003 WSOP Main Event

After earning his seat through an $86 satellite tournament on PokerStars, he travelled to Las Vegas to play in the 2003 World Series of Poker Main Event.

The first few days of the event saw Moneymaker lock horns with some of the best players in the world, including Howard Lederer, Phil Ivey and eventual runner-up Sam Farha.

Moneymaker sensationally bluffed Farha off the winning hand heads-up and went on to win the tournament for $2,500,000.

"I didn't expect it; never in a million years," Moneymaker told PokerNews in 2020. "I honestly thought I would go back to work and play poker here and there but it would be a small part of my life. I was wrong."


Read More: Chris Moneymaker's WSOP Memories


The 'Moneymaker Effect'

Moneymaker's win, coupled with the advent of hole-card cameras and televised poker, helped to create the "poker boom" that occurred from 2003-2006.

Over the next few years, the field size of the WSOP Main Event would grow, helped by semi-professional Greg Raymer winning in 2004, having also qualified online. He defeated a field of 2,576 - an increase of 207% year on year.

However, Moneymaker's story began to inspire millions of players around the world, both online and live, and by the 2006 WSOP the field had reached 8,773, a record that stands till this day.

Moneymaker and PokerStars

After his big win, Chris quit his day job as an accountant and began playing tournaments around the world. While doing so, he also started his own company and became a member of Team PokerStars.

A popular face on the poker circuit, he continued to help grow and evolve as the game of poker did. The Moneymaker Tour was one of the initiatives, helping players win Platinum Passes to the PokerStars Players Championship.

In December 2020, he announced that he would be leaving Team PokerStars after 17 years.

Moneymaker was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2019.


Related: Chris Moneymaker on the Hall of Fame, Being an Ambassador and the State of the Game Today


In 2021, Moneymaker was subject of a PokerNews April Fool's joke, with his real name supposedly Chris Smith.

Chris Moneymaker Top Five Poker Cashes

YEAREVENTBUY-INPLACEPAYOUT (USD)
May 2003WSOP Main Event$10,0001st$2,500,000
March 2004WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star$5,200$200,000 
January 2011PCA Main Event$10,30011th$130,000
June 2019partypoker MILLIONS Vegas$10,3009th$80,000
August 2009WPT Gold Strike Poker Open$5,1503rd$60,110

Courtesy of The Hendon Mob. Last Updated May 2021

WSOP Main Event Winners 1994-2003

YEARENTRIESCHAMPIONCOUNTRYPRIZE
2003839Chris MoneymakerUnited States$2,500,000
2002631Robert VarkonyiUnited States$2,000,000
2001613Carlos MortensenSpain$1,500,000
2000512Chris FergusonUnited States$1,500,000
1999393Noel FurlongIreland$1,000,000
1998350Scotty NguyenVietnam$1,000,000
1997312Stu UngarUnited States$1,000,000
1996295Huck SeedUnited States$1,000,000
1995273Dan HarringtonUnited States$1,000,000
1994268Russ HamiltonUnited States$1,000,000

Covered Events

Event Place Prize
Lone Star Poker Series Champions Social
$1,300 Texas State $1M GTD Main Event
148th $2,825
Stars CALL For Action powered by PokerStars - Charity Tournament
Stars CALL For Action powered by PokerStars - Charity Tournament
5th $20,000
Moneymaker's Road to PSPC 2020 - Seminole Hard Rock
$360 Main Event
32nd $765
Moneymaker's Road to PSPC 2020 - Dublin
€175 Main Event - Road to PSPC
7th €3,260
Moneymaker's Road to PSPC 2020 - London
£140 Main Event - Road to PSPC
15th £940
Moneymaker's Road to PSPC 2020 - Newcastle
£140 Main Event - Road to PSPC
50th £267
Moneymaker's Road to PSPC 2020 - Hippodrome London
£140 Main Event - Road to PSPC
15th £588
2019 PokerStars EPT Open Sochi
₽133,000 EPT Open Main Event
119th 227,500 RUB
2019 World Series of Poker
Event #73: $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em MAIN EVENT - World Championship
687th $20,200
2019 partypoker LIVE MILLIONS Vegas @ Aria
$10,300 Main Event
9th $80,000
2017 WinStar River Poker Series
Main Event
105th $4,089
2017 PokerStars Championship Sochi
Main Event
15th 1,815,000 RUB
2016 PokerStars Festival - New Jersey
$300 NL Hold'em PokerStars Cup
11th $720
Hollywood Poker Open Season 4 Charles Town Regional Main Event
$1,115 Regional Main Event
4th $10,080
Hollywood Poker Open Season 4 Toledo Regional Main Event
$1,115 Regional Main Event
23rd $2,746
Hollywood Poker Open Season 3 Grantville Regional Main Event
Regional Main Event
7th $4,402
2014 Hollywood Poker Open St. Louis Regional Event
HPO St. Louis Regional Championship
1st $36,259
2014 Hollywood Poker Open Tunica Regional Event
HPO Tunica Regional Championship
3rd $6,016
2012 PokerStars.com EPT Sanremo
Main Event
116th €8,000
2012 WinStar River Poker Series
Main Event
86th $4,517
2011 NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship
NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship
2nd $300,000
2011 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure
Main Event
11th $130,000
2010 PokerStars.com EPT Grand Final - Monte Carlo
Main Event
69th €25,000
2010 NBC Heads-Up Poker Championship
$20,000 Heads-up Championship
15th $25,000
2007 EPT - London
EPT London - Main Event
17th £12,230
2007 World Series of Poker
Event 3 - $1,500 No Limit Holdem
233rd $3,888