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Five of the Finest Poker Players Hailing From Maryland
We’re unsure why it is but the state of Maryland creates some fantastic poker players. Having 4,000 miles of shoreline to relax at could be the secret. Whatever the reason, the five biggest Maryland winners have banked $36,638,001 in live poker tournament winnings. These five heroes are “The Free State’s” elite stars.
Anthony Gregg Tops the Maryland All-Time Money List
Anthony “Tony” Gregg grew up in Colombia, Maryland but now resides in Washington DC. Gregg tops the Maryland all-time money listing thanks to accumulating $11,979,691 in live poker tournament winnings.
Gregg burst onto the scene in 2009 at the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure. He finished second to Poorya Nazari in the $10,000 Main Event and banked $1,700,000.
There were no real results of note for Gregg in 2010 or 2011 but he came back with a bang in 2012 and 2013.
He finished sixth in the 2012 PCA Main Event for $364,000 for a start. Gregg also won the WPT Parx Open Poker Classic for $416,127. His biggest-ever cash came in 2013 when he won the $111,111 One Drop High Roller. That netted him $4,830,619!
Amazingly, Gregg reached another PCA Main Event final table in 2016. He finished second for $671,394 making it a trio of final table appearances in the Bahamas.
Greg Merson Put Maryland Poker on the Map
Greg Merson was already considered a talented poker player before putting Maryland on the map in 2012. Merson specialized in cash games and was a big winner in online poker circles. He had his demons, however, including drug addiction.
Merson got himself clean and his poker results became incredible. The 2012 WSOP saw Merson cash in three events, including a fifth-place finish. He also won the $10,000 No-Limit Hold’em Six-Handed event or $1,136,197.
The best was yet to come because Merson took down the 2012 WSOP Main Event. The man from Laurel, Maryland scooped $8,513,853 and a place in poker’s history books.
Merson doesn’t play as often as he once did but is still a regular at the annual WSOP. There’s no doubt Merson will add to his $11,428,359 winnings in the near future.
Steve Dannenmann of Severn, Maryland Almost Won a WSOP Main Event
Steve Dannenmann’s story is superb. Dannenmann is an accountant, financial advisor and mortgage loan officer In Severn, Maryland since 1991. He’s also a keep poker player, loving nothing more than playing home games with friends. Dannenmann described himself as the fourth-best player in those games.
That’s not entirely true if you look at Dannenmann’s results. His first recorded live cash is also his largest. And what a prize it is: $4,250,000. This was Dannenmann’s reward for finishing second to Greg Raymer in the 2005 WSOP Main Event.
Dannenmann couldn’t afford the $10,000 buy-in for the Main Event so split the cost 50/50 with his friend Jerry Ditzel. Ditzel got his hands on $2,125,000 when Dannenmann returned home. Now that’s a cool return on investment!
Christian Harder Crushes Live and Online Poker
Christian “charder30” Harder was born in and lives in Annapolis, Maryland. It’s here he forged a successful career as an online poker tournament specialist. Harder accumulated almost $3.3 million in winnings online and has $4,588,647 from live events.
Harder won $200,000 for a seventh-place finish in the 2008 PCA Main Event. He won that very tournament in 2017 for $429,664. What is it with Maryland poker players and the PCA?
His largest prize weighs in at $571,965. That happened in 2009 when he triumphed in the $25,500 WPT Five Star World Poker Classic in Las Vegas.
A WSOP bracelet is high on Harder’s wanted list. We wouldn’t be against him acquiring one.
Triple Bracelet Winner Brock Parker
Brock Parker is another bracelet winner from Maryland. He has three WSOP bracelets, in fact. The first came in 2009 when he won the $2,500 Limit Hold’em Six-Handed event for $223,697. Parker won the $2,500 No-Limit Hold’em Six-Handed event three days later for $552,745.
Bracelet number three came in a $10,000 Limit Omaha Hi/Lo event in 2014. That banked Parker $443,407.
He’s come close to adding to his poker jewelry collection on numerous occasions. He has nine top-six finishes at the WSOP. Winning a fourth bracelet is a formality, surely?