Erik Seidel Poker Career, Private Life, Net Worth & More!

Date:2023-03-02 Category: biography
Erik Seidel Poker Career

The former Wall Street trader brought his talent for making money to the table, and since then, he has managed to become one of the most high-profile poker players in the world! The word legend is bandied around the poker world a little bit too frivolously these days, but with over 35 million in lifetime earnings, nine World Series of Poker bracelets, and a WPT title to boot, I would say Erik Seidel deserves that title. In this article, you learn how a young Seidel battled with dyslexia, his love of Backgammon and poker, and how his unique perspective on life has led to him competing in the highest stakes tournaments in the world for the past three decades.

Erik Seidel Poker Career

Biography

Erik Seidel was born in New York, NY, on November 6, 1959. During childhood, he loved reading crime books and wanted to become a lawyer. A few years later, little Erik thought of getting into the business world to make money. However, he had difficulties during school due to dyslexia, or “reading disability.” It happens when a kid has difficulty reading due to problems identifying speech sounds and learning how they relate to letters and words, known as decoding. The disability results from individual differences in areas of the brain that process language. Although Erik was a normal kid with a normal vision and intelligence, he had a hard time learning to read. That made him believe he was unqualified for the business world or any other world! Little Erik convinced himself that he was not bright. Dyslexia caused him a lot of trouble at a young age because he did not do well in school, and he was convinced that everyone around him was much smarter than he was. In such scenarios, you have two options, (a) beat yourself up and think that you are a failure, or (b) decide to prove that people are wrong and find something you can really excel in. Erik took the second option, started to work harder, and found the right thing.

 

Erik & The Magic of Backgammon!

He started by playing Backgammon and developed winning skills at the game. It turned out he was gifted enough to play, win, and make money! He was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time because, at the time, there was a big renaissance of Backgammon, and it happened to take place in the town that he lived in, i.e., New York. Paul Magriel, who changed and revolutionized the game was around, and Erik made friends with him. So, had he been anyplace else, he wouldn’t have been able to develop those skills. So, he was literally in the right place at the right time!

Although his father was unhappy with the idea of playing Backgammon to make a living, Erik was determined to get good at something and survive! Later, when he becomes insanely successful in both Backgammon and poker, his father becomes happy enough with him playing and making money!

 

Erik, The Super Shy Kid!

Erik Seidel Poker CareerYes, the legend used to be very shy, especially around women. He used to be socially isolated, and this is interesting because the poker world is filled with people with some social awkwardness! Don’t get this wrong, though! It does not mean you must be a freak to become a poker legend!! That simply means a poker table is where you can be safely weird!!!

 

The Wolf Of Wall Street!

As pointed out earlier, Erik decided to take risks, and his thirst for risk-taking took him to Wall Street. He worked as a trader until the stock market crashed in 1987. Then, Seidel decided to put his poker passion to good use. He loved cards and learned how to play poker from the top players at the famous Mayfair Club in New York, with Dan Harrington and Howard Lederer being his favorite mentors.

Erik Seidel Poker Career

Erik Seidel Professional Poker Career

One year after the stock market crash down, in 1988, Seidel recorded his first major poker tournament achievement when he was runner-up in the 1988 WSOP Main Event. If you watched the movie, Rounders, you should know that it features Seidel and Johnny Chan‘s final table in the 1988 WSOP.

It was just the beginning of his le-gen-dary poker journey. Next year, in 1999, he made the WSOP Main Event final table again, finishing fourth. In 1992, Erik won his first-ever WSOP bracelet in a $2,500 Limit Hold ’em event with $168,000. Since then, he has won eight more bracelets and made history!

Erik Seidel Poker Career

WSOP Achievements

Seidel started his World Series of Poker bracelet winnings in 1992, which still continues! His winnings are unique as he has bracelets in five different games, including Hold ’em, Omaha, and Deuce to Seven Draw. In the history of the WSOP, Phil Hellmuth, Doyle Brunson, Johnny Chan, and Phil Ivey are the only players who have won more bracelets than Seidel. He also has nearly 120 WSOP cashes. This record puts him fifth on the historic ALL TIME MONEY LIST, with almost 50 of those cashes counted as top 10 finishes.

 

In Dec 2023, the 64 year old Erik won his 10th WSOP gold bracelet in the World Series Of Poker Paradise $50,000 High Roller event.

 

Erik Seidel WSOP Bracelets
Event Year Prize
WSOP Poker Paradise High Roller 2023 $1,704,400
GGPoker WSOP Online Event #11: $10,000 Super MILLION$ High Roller 2021 $977,842
$5,000 No-Limit Deuce to Seven Draw 2007 $538,835
$2,000 No-Limit Hold’em 2005 $611,795
$1,500 Pot-Limit Omaha 2003 $146,100
$3,000 No-Limit Texas Hold’em 2001 $411,300
$5,000 No-Limit Deuce to Seven Draw 1998 $132,750
$5,000 Limit Hold’em 1994 $210,000
$2,500 Omaha 8 or Better 1993 $94,000
$2,500 Limit Hold’em 1992 $168,000

 

Top 5 WPT Winnings

The WSOP isn’t the only place the legend Erik shines. During the sixth season of the World Poker Tour, he won the 2008 WPT Foxwoods Poker Classic, earning $992,890. He has eight final table finishes in his WPT resume!

Erik Seidel WPT Winnings
Event Place Year Prize
WPT Bay 101 Shooting Star $7,500 Main Event 4th 2013 $295,590
Hollywood Poker Open $9,600 Main Event 2nd 2011 $155,103
Bellagio Cup V $15,000 Championship Event 6th 2009 $164,640
Foxwoods Poker Classic $9,700 Championship 1st 2008 $992,890
Festa al Lago III $10,000 Doyle Brunson North American Poker Championship 4th 2004 $165,000

 

European Poker Tour & Other Poker Ventures

Siedel is a poker legend without borders! On May 15, 2015, he made it to the 2015 €100,000 Super High Roller European Poker Tour Grand final table for €2,015,000. Although this is his single EPT title, his winnings do not end with this title!

Erik Seidel Top 5 EPT Winnings
Event Place Year Earning  
EPT Monte Carlo Grand Final €10,000 Turbo 6-Max 2nd 2016 $158,479
EPT Monte Carlo Grand Final €100,000 Super High Roller 1st 2015 $2,222,222
EPT Barcelona €50,000 Super High Roller 2nd 2013 $745,224
Barcelona €50,000 Super High Roller 6th 2012 $188,721
PokerStars Caribbean Adventure $25,000 High Roller 4th 2011 $295,960

 

In Jan 2007, Seidel finished 2nd in the Aussie Millions $100,000 event and earned $550,000(AUD), beaten by Erick Lindgren in a Heads-Up play. A year later, in 2008, he finished 2nd in Aussie Millions $10,000 main event and took home $1,000,000(AUD). He kept winning until 2011, when he returned to Australia for a bigger win! At first, Seidel finished 3rd at the A$100,000 No-Limit Hold’em event and, a week later, conquered the A$ 250,000 Super High Roller and took home a total of over $3 million in cash. In May 2011, he had another significant win in the $100,000 Super High Roller Event at the Ninth Annual Five Star World Poker Classic and took home $1 million cash.

He keeps playing and crushing it!

 

Erik Seidel Top Cashes in 2023 & 2024
Event Place Date Earning  
PGT Last Chance #4 – $10,500 No-Limit Hold’em(2023 PGT Last Chance) 8 Jan 05,2024 $31,200
$10,000 No-Limit Hold’em Seniors $500K GTD(2023 WPT World Championship) 11 Dec 20,2023 $33,553
$50,000 No-Limit Hold’em $2 Million GTD(2023 WSOP Paradise) 1 Dec 09,2023 $1,704,400
$10,150 No-Limit Hold’em Six Max (2023 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure) 11 Feb03,2023 $21,100
$3,000 No-Limit Hold’em Mystery Bounty (2023 PokerStars Caribbean Adventure) 24 Jan28,2023 $7,050
PokerGO Cup #5 – $15,700 No-Limit Hold’em (2023 PokerGO Cup) 2 Jan17,2023 $176,400
PokerGO Cup #4 – $10,500 No-Limit Hold’em (2023 PokerGO Cup) 6 Jan16,2023 $46,800
Aria High Roller #35 – $10,000 No-Limit Hold’em (2022 Aria Winter High Rollers) 2 Dec19,2022 $72,800

Erik Seidel's Wife

Erik Seidel’s Wife, Net Worth & Private Life

Although he used to be shy around women when Ruah came along, everything changed! Erik found the love of her life, got married, and now has two beautiful daughters: Jamesin and Elian. Before Ruah, Erik had a relationship that didn’t work out.

If you are curious about his secret winning formula and magic ingredient for maintaining the steady rate of being at the top, it has something to do with his lifestyle and state of mind. First of all, Erik has a great perspective on the random nature of the game. Hence, it takes less wear and tear for him mentally than for others. He has a better perspective on the world’s randomness than most people. In other words, he has less self-involvement in the results of what’s happening. He plays his cards right and allows luck to do the rest! Another significant winning attribute that Seidel has, is knowing when to fold’em! And in the end, he is a meditator! Believe it or not, he practices meditation to train his mind.

Erik Seidel’s net worth exceeds $45 million in 2024, which means he still plays and has no plans for retirement yet!

 

Erik Seidel’s Life In A Box

Full name Erik Seidel
Date of Birth November 06, 1959
Age 65
Residence Las Vegas, NV, United States
Zodiac Sign Scorpio
Occupation Professional poker player
Marital Status Married
Wife Ruah
No. of children 2
WSOP bracelets 9
WPT titles 1
EPT titles 1
Total live earning $46,853,375
Best live cash $2,472,555
United States All Time Money List 6th
All Time Money List 9th
New York, USA All Time Money List 3rd
GPI Ranking 34th
Popularity Ranking 7th
Instagram page @seidelpics
Twitter account @Erik_Seidel
Facebook fan page @ Erik Seidel
fulltiltpoker.com erik-seidel
Official website erikseidel.com

 

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