And big business likes poker too. Bear Stearns estimated that
annual revenue from poker was $4.5 billion in 2003. Another
analyst group feels 2005 revenue will exceed $10 billion.
PokerPulse.com stated that $117,116,301.00 was wagered at online
poker rooms in a 24 hour period on August 25, 2004.
People see the excitement and money that is involved in poker
tournaments by watching poker on TV, which is one reason the
perception of poker gambling went from being played in dark
rooms to a preferred status. The seasoned professional players
are excited about this as well. They are not winning as many
tournaments as they have in the past due to the influx of
many new players, but they are winning more than ever because
of their levels of expertise at the game.
Plus, the makeup of the top players has been changing. In the
past only people who played for years and built up instincts
for knowing how to win were champions. Now the newer top players
are highly educated, highly successful and are analytical in
nature. You will see individuals from top professions like
Financial Analyst, Rocket Scientist, Attorney, and Mathematician
along with industry CEO’s in the ranks of champion. People
like Phil Ivey and Chris Ferguson who can perform mathematical
calculations in their heads with ease will be the future.
But not having an Ivy League education won’t stop enthusiastic
poker players from playing the game. On a televised episode
of the 2004 World Series of Poker tournament, a former homeless
man stated in a game he got off of the streets by learning to
play poker. He stated that he learned the game by losing
$1500.00, one penny at a time. (For the record he did not win
that tournament, but did leave Binion’s with over $40,000 in
And with the 2003 and 2004 World Series of Poker Champions
earning their seats from online poker room tournaments, the
Internet will eventually be the main producer of players.
A huge number of online poker rooms have been sponsoring seats
to top tournaments with buy ins less than $100, which is a far
cry from the standard entry fees for these events at land based
casinos. So keep an eye on what is going on in the poker world,
because the excitement is just getting started!