Online Poker

Main Event Chip Leader Gears Up for Game of His Life

by AintLuck.com Poker Team

In 2003, an unknown by the name of Chris Moneymaker burst onto the poker scene. Well, perhaps it would be better stated to say that in 2003 Moneymaker led the creation of the poker scene as we know it today.  This is because the unknown accountant from Georgia turned a $39 online investment into a $2.5 million win in the World Series of Poker Main Event.  His accomplishment paved the way for amateurs from all around the globe to believe that they too could take a shot at instant fame and fortune.

Fast forward ahead five years to 2008 and we have reached time for the Main Event’s final table where nine players have a chance to leap from relative obscurity into superstardom overnight.  The November Nine begin play this Sunday night with a chance to become crowned world champion and become $9.15 million richer.

Current chip leader and truck salesman Dennis Phillips used a win in a $200 buy in tournament at a St. Louis casino to earn his way into the world championship and will enter play on Sunday with $26 million in chips.  He has a $2 million advantage over Ivan Demidov who has just over $24 million.

After being paid out 9th place money at just over $900,000, Phillips has spent the past 3 months being tutored by poker pros and coaches Roy Winston and Joe McGowan looking to advance his game.  Not taking his lead for granted, Phillips fully expects all of his fellow tablemates to have improved their games and studied his tendencies by watching televised coverage of earlier stages of the tournament.  All the while, he has tried to remain grounded as he continues to work at his truck dealership in the interim.

A budding philanthropist as a result of new newfound wealth, Phillips has pledged 1% of his winnings to the Prevent Cancer Foundation while his sponsor, PokerStars will match the donation as well. In addition to the cancer foundation donation, Phillips has also donated $19,000 MS Foundation and $10,000 to the Albert Pujols foundation.
A rabid St. Louis Cardinals fan, Phillips will be joined in Las Vegas by 300 supporters which include family and friends, most of which will be sporting Cardinals red in support of their new hero.

Whether or not he wins the event remains to be seen, though it does appear as though Phillips is ready to accept the responsibility and all that comes with being a world champion.

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