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The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King: Inside the Richest Poker Game of All Timeby Michael Craig
Synopses & Reviews
In 2001, a rich stranger from Texas descended upon the high-stakes poker room in the opulent Bellagio casino in Las Vegas. A self-made billionaire by the name of Andy Beal, the stranger challenged some of the world's greatest poker players — including Doyle Brunson, Chip Reese, Howard Lederer, and Jennifer Harman — to heads-up matches in the richest poker game ever played. This is that story...
Beginning the scintillating contest that would shock the world of poker, Andy and each opponent had $1 million, betting $10,000 and $20,000 per round. As the games intensified over the coming months and Andy developed into a great player, he realized how he could take his adversaries out of their comfort zone — he raised the stakes to put everything they had on the line. By the time the battle of wits ended, there was more than $20 million on the table.
For the first time ever, here is the detailed, true account of the Big Game that has already achieved legendary status in poker lore. Putting you railside to observe the pulse-pounding action, where you can almost hear the distinct sound of clay chips on felt, Michael Craig takes you inside the iron-nerved mind and pathological psyche of the professional gambler. Filled with vivid characters, sensational tales, and riveting human drama, The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King is a unique, suspenseful journey into the world of people who live on the razor's edge of fortune — where incredible wealth, or utter ruin, turns on the flip of a card.
"The 'professor' is Howard Lederer, a professional poker player whose rigorous analytical approach to the game earned him his nickname. The banker is Andy Beal, a multimillionaire obsessed with beating the world's best poker players at their game, limit Texas hold 'em, played for stratospheric stakes. The suicide king, a symbol of the aleatory nature of the endeavor, is the king of hearts, who holds his broadsword behind his head. It's a great mix, and Craig (The 5 Minute Investor) offers a knowledgeable and observant chronicle of the high-stakes games between Beal and the syndicate of professional players organized by the 'Babe Ruth of poker,' Doyle Brunson. The syndicate put up $10,000,000 to sit opposite Beal, trading $100,000 bets. Beal, for his part, took a mathematical approach, at one point running millions of computer simulations of various poker problems, in search of an edge against the pros, who rely on an uncanny intuition honed by thousands of hands. Craig includes enough details about the professionals to allow readers insight into their gambler personalities. Having interviewed many of the participants in this legendary poker battle, he describes it with an appropriate sense of awe, and readers will be awed as well. Agent, Eileen Cope. (June 2)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"...The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King: Inside the Richest Poker Game of All Time provides a detailed account of the big-money hold 'em experiences of Texas Banker Andy Beal." The New York Daily News
"Craig's access to the players provides insight into the pressure-cooker atmosphere of a big-money card room." Texas Monthly
"High-stakes poker players aren't like the rest of us. That and his own fascination with the game, are the reasons Scottsdale resident Michael Craig wrote the book..." The Arizona Republic
"A thrilling portal into a culture the rest of us can scarcely imagine." Robert Kurson, New York Times bestselling author of Shadow Divers.
In 2001, a stranger from Texas entered the high-stakes poker room in the Bellagio casino in Las Vegas. A self-made billionaire, he challenged some of poker's greatest players to a series of heads-up matches. By the end, there was more than $20 million on the table.
For the first time ever, here is the detailed, true account of the legendary Big Game that shocked the poker world. Putting you railside to observe the pulse-pounding action, it takes you inside the iron-nerved mind of the professional gambler. Filled with vivid characters, sensational tales, and riveting human drama, this is a unique, suspenseful journey into the world of people who live on the razor's edge of fortune — where incredible wealth or utter ruin turn on the flip of a card.
- One of the author's sources for this book is a member of the illustrious and mysterious "Corporation" of top-10 poker players who pool their money to play for millions--revealing for the first time the secrets of their games, strategies, and partnership. - Books about gambling sell extremely well, as evidenced by the success of Bringing Down the House (Free Press, 2002), which has 320,000 hardcover and trade paperback copies in print combined, and Positively Fifth Street (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2003), which has sold more than 80,000 hardcover copies. - With celebrity poker tournaments boosting the Bravo cable network's ratings, and ESPN drawing over one million viewers per episode to its coverage of the World Series of Poker (held every June), public interest in the game has never been higher. Additionally, it is estimated that more than 90,000 Americans play poker on the Internet daily, with as much as 55 million dollars being wagered on any given day. - A brilliantly told, fascinating adventure story. The Professor, The Banker, And The Suicide King gives readers a view into an exclusive world--one that very few have had the opportunity to witness. - Michael Craig has written for The American Spectator, Cigar Aficionado, and Penthouse.
About the Author
Michael Craig lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, where he writes books and articles and occasionally plays poker. He has written for Cigar Aficionado, Golf, The American Spectator, Business 2.0, T&L Golf, and Penthouse, among others. He has also written The Fifty Best (and Worst) Business Deals of All Time and The Five Minute Investor. This is his third book.
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