- »These Are Top Five Washington Poker Players
These Are Top Five Washington Poker Players
The Evergreen State of Washington has a knack of creating exceptional poker players. We don’t know why this is the case but some incredible players hail from Washington.
Such luminaries as Alex Fitzgerald, Darren Rabinowitz, Tyler Patterson, Matthew Affleck, and Dylan Wilkerson call Washington home. These are stars in their own right, yet none feature in the state’s top five winning players!
These grinders, however, do.
Scott Clements Is An Elite Poker Player From Washington
Scott Clements hails from Mount Vernon, Washington and now lives in Lynden, Washington. Clements isn’t only one of the state’s best players, he’s one of the world’s top players.
Clements has more than $8.2 million in live poker tournament winnings. He’s accumulated this huge sum with the help of 19 six-figure prizes. He has two WSOP bracelets to his name and a WPT Main Event title. The latter awarded Clements his largest-ever live MTT prize, namely C$1,456,585 ($1,505,312).
Clements is no slouch in the online poker world either. He’s known as “BigRisky” in online circles where he’s won more than $3.7 million from tournaments.
Like most of Washington’s top five earners, Clements excels in non-hold’em events. Clements particularly shines in Omaha formats in addition to hold’em.
Brandon Cantu of Washington Has Two WSOP Bracelets
Brandon Cantu has a reputation for being an extremely loose-aggressive player. His nickname of “Any Two” is testament to his playing style. Playing so loosely means Cantu either busts early or goes deep with a monster stack in tow. Doing the latter has helped him rack up $4,421,218 in live MTT winnings.
The Washington resident has two WSOP bracelets to his name. The first came in 2006 in a $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em event. That result bagged Cantu $757,839. He won a $1,500 PLO8 event in 2009 for $228,867.
Cantu has a singular seven-figure score on his resume. This came in 2008 when Cantu won the $10,000 WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star event in San Jose.
Lee Watkinson the PLO Specialist
Tacoma, Washington is where Lee Watkinson calls home. It is from this base that Watkinson has won almost $4.3 million. Watkinson got his hands on a WSOP bracelet in 2006 in a $10,000 Pot-Limit Omaha event. He reeled in a $655,746 prize, which is still his largest cash to date.
Do yourself a favor if you ever see Watkinson in a PLO tournament and avoid him. The Washington star excels in this format. He won the A$3,250 PLO event at the 2008 Aussie Millions and has several PLO final table finishes.
Lee Markholt Has Nine Six-Figure Scores
Lee Markholt of Eatonville, Washington comes in at fourth-place courtesy of winning $4,376,007. Winning so much is an amazing achievement but one made even more stupendous by the fact Markholt has never won more than $500,000 from a single event.
He came close to breaking through that barrier in 2008 in a WPT Poker Challenge tournament. Markholt took it down for $493,815 after defeating Bryan Devonshire heads-up.
Markholt came close to winning a WSOP bracelet in 2013 but ultimately finished second in the $5,000 No-Limit Hold’em 6-handed event.
Rep Porter the Mixed Game Specialist
Ralph Porter, Rep to his friends, was born and bred in Woodinville, Washington. It’s from here that Porter makes the pilgrimage to Las Vegas each summer. Porter’s first WSOP cash came in 2005. He’s cashed 54 more times over the next 15 years.
Two of those cashes were outright victories. Porter won the $1,500 No-Limit Hold’em 6-Handed in 2008 and the $2,500 Razz in 2011. Bracelet number three came in 2016 in a $1,500 Razz event.
Porter also has two runner-up finishes in bracelet events. The first bridesmaid finish was in 2015 in the $10,000 Dealers Choice Championship. Number two was in the $10,000 PLO Championship in 2018. That saw Porter win $629,378, which is still his biggest career cash.