Greatest Poker Players

In any game or sport the person at the top of the pile gets a lot of respect, and there is a certain level of pride that comes with being the best in the world at something, or one of the best. There are different variants of poker so when talking about the best players you need to specify what game variant is being talked about.

In this article we will take a look at the greatest poker players that play Texas Hold’em, which is the variant where each player receives 2 cards and 5 community cards are used to make the best 5 card hand. This is list of players is in no particular order, but they are all considered to be among the best in the world by the fans and more importantly by their peers.

Phil Ivey

According to most people for a long time Phil Ivey has been the best poker player in the world. He has been involved in some of the biggest online pots as can be seen in the poker series “High Stakes Poker”.


He has placed 1st 25 times in a poker tournament and has total tournament winnings that are in the region of $20 million – no easy feat. He is most feared on the cash game tables, where his ability to read the situation and complete fearlessness gives him the edge on most opponents – even other professionals.

Phil Ivey also used to be a Full Till Poker representative, where he played for high stakes cash games against other players who dared to challenge him. They would typically play with a buy-in that ranged from $50,000-100,000.

Antonio Esfandiari

Nicknamed “The Magician”, because of his roots where he actually worked as a magician, he is very popular in the poker circle, and has won the One Drop tournament for a payout of over $10 million. He has great reading abilities at the table, where can figure out if he is ahead or behind an opponent in a hand.

His total lifetime tournament winnings are around $26 million dollars and can be seen to play regular high stakes cash games in Las Vegas. He played on a number of poker shows such as High Stakes poker and Poker After Dark.

Phil Hellmuth

One of the icons of the game is Phil Hellmuth who is known for being more of a great tournament player than a great cash game player. He won the World Series of Poker main event against a two time champion.


He is infamous for his outbursts when losing a hand, which are quite funny to watch from an objective standpoint, but certainly it’s nothing to respect when you consider the integrity of the game.

Phil Hellmuth currently holds the record for the most number of WSOP bracelets, which is at a staggering 13. For that reason he is considered as the best tournament players out there. He certainly does have a knack for navigating large tournament fields and ending up with that all important 1st place.

Daniel Negreanu

This player is regarded as one of the best talkers in the game and his nickname is “Kid Poker”. He will try to talk to you as much as possible in order to extract any information about what you might be holding. It’s a strategy that many try to implement, but Daniel does it to perfection.


His biggest feat is winning 3 $10,000 buy-in tournaments in a year. That is a record that will be hard to beat as you need not only a lot of skill but also a fair bit of luck in order to get the job done. Daniel also won the One Drop tournament for a cash payout of $8,288,001 in 2014. The entry fee for that tournament is a cool million hence the name, The One Drop.

He has his own YouTube channel where he talks about poker, gives advice and just shows what he is up to. You may have also seen him on the many poker based TV shows that he has appear in over the years.

Sam Trickett

Another player from the pool of younger ones is Sam Trickett, who has worked his way up all the way to the highest stakes played in the world. He currently has poker earning of up to $12,000,000 in terms of tournaments, and probably many millions more in the cash games that he has won.

He is a British based player, but has moved on to playing around the world which includes poker hotspots such as Las Vegas and Macau. He has cashed a total of 13 times in WSOP events and has yet to win a WSOP bracelet. However, given the talent level of this player it is only a matter of time before it happens.

He also finished second in the One Drop event in 2014, which gave him a lot of recognition in the poker circle.

Jason Mercier

Another poker player that is worth talking about is Jason Mercier, who won the 2014 High Roller series to win a prize payout of $1.6 million. He is a great tournament player and does pretty well in cash games too.


By the age of 28 he won a number of WSOP titles which makes him one of the better young poker players to ever play the game. His style is methodical, and leaves emotion at the door. You won’t see him celebrate too hard with a win, but at the same time when a bad beat comes his way he doesn’t let you know about it. In the coming years you can expect to see more results from this player.


The poker players mentioned in this article are just some of the best poker players in the world. There are a lot more that could be mentioned as so many talented individuals exist. However, the names mentioned here are like household names in the poker community that are envied by most regarding the skill of their poker game.