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Dan Harrington

Dan Harrington
Nationality: United States
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Biography

Dan Harrington is an American poker player and author who won the 1995 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event.

Over the course of his career, "Action Dan" won two WSOP bracelets, made four WSOP Main Event final tables, won a WPT title and over six million dollars in tournament winnings.

In 2010 he was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame.

Biography

Harrington was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on December 6, 1945. Both of his parents were born in Ireland.

A former chess State champion, Harrington also excelled at backgammon. He first learned to play poker while attending Suffolk University. He often travelled to Harvard, where he played poker against Microsoft co-founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen.

Harrington was part of a group of players who were regulars at the Mayfair Club in New York. They included Jay Heimowitz, Al Krux, Erik Seidel, and Steve Zolotow. However, Harrington remained at university and eventually graduated with a degree in government and history.

Over the next ten years, Harrington worked as a bankruptcy lawyer before switching to poker. He first cashed in the WSOP in 1986 and made it to the final table of the Main Event in 1987, finishing sixth.

He added another cash in 1988, but would have to wait until 1995 to win his first bracelet, winning a $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em event for $249,000.

1995 WSOP Main Event

The 1995 World Series of Poker (WSOP) had a total of 23 preliminary events, with the Main Event attracting a field of 273 players.

Off the back of his first bracelet, Harrington made it to the final table alongside 1992 Main Event champion Hamid Dastmalchi and Barbara Enright, whobecame the first and, to date, the only woman to make the WSOP Main Event final table.

Enright would finish fifth and Dastmalchi fourth, as Harrington eventually defeated Howard Goldfarb heads-up to win $1,000,000.

Dan Harrington Poker Achievements

Harrington says that the game of poker "went dead" in the 90s, and it was only the advent of internet and television that saw its revival in 2003.

"It exploded on TV," Harrington told PokerListings in 2015. "I watched them playing No Limit Hold’em and I thought, 'hey, I remember how to play this game, and these guys know it, too,' so I came back from retirement and managed to have a couple more successful years."

In 2003, Harrington made it to the WSOP Main Event final table for the third time, finishing third the year Chris Moneymaker topped a field of 839. The following year, Harrington returned to the final table, finishing fourth. However, by this time the field had ballooned to 2,576 players, with many calling it the greatest accomplishment in WSOP history.

Three years later, Harringotn won the WPT Legends of Poker at the Bicycle Casino for $1,634,865. As of 2021, only five other players have won the WSOP Main Event and a WPT title: Doyle Brunson, Carlos Mortensen, Scotty Nguyen, Joe Hachem, Ryan Riess.

Dan Harrington Poker Books

In addition to his poker success, Harrington is best known for 'Harrington on Hold'em', a series of poker books published between 2004-06:

Harrington also published two volumes of 'Harrington on Cash Games', as well as 'Harrington on Online Cash Games' (2010) and 'Harrington on Modern Tournament Poker' (2014)


Read More: The 10 Most Important Poker Strategy Books Ever Written and Why They’re Special


Dan Harrington WSOP Bracelets

YearEventPayout (USD)
1995Event #21: $2,500 No-Limit Hold'em$249,000
1995Event #25: $10,000 No-Limit Hold'em$1,000,000

Dan Harrington Top Five Poker Cashes

DateEventBuy-inPlacePayout (USD)
August 2007WPT Legends of Poker$9,6001st$1,635,365
May 2004WSOP Main Event$10,0004th$1,500,000
May 1995WSOP Main Event$10,0001st$1,000,000
May 2003WSOP Main Event$10,0003rd$650,000
October 2005Doyle Brunson North American Poker Championship$10,2002nd$620,730

Courtesy of The Hendon Mob. Last Updated June 2021

WSOP Main Event Winners 1986-95

YEARENTRIESCHAMPIONCOUNTRYPRIZE
1995273Dan HarringtonUnited States$1,000,000
1994268Russ HamiltonUnited States$1,000,000
1993220Jim BechtelUnited States$1,000,000
1992201Hamid DastmalchiIran$1,000,000
1991215Brad DaughertyUnited States$1,000,000
1990194Mansour MatloubiIran$895,000
1989178Phil HellmuthUnited States$755,000
1988167Johnny ChanUnited States$700,000
1987152Johnny ChanUnited States$625,000
1986141Berry JohnstonUnited States$570,000

PokerNews Covered Events

Event Place Prize
2012 World Series of Poker
Event 35: $2,500 Mixed Hold'em
45th $4229
2009 World Series of Poker
Event 57 - $10,000 World Championship No Limit Hold'em
252nd $32963

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