Online Poker

Raptor Gives Up Professional Poker

by Poker Team

One of the online poker community’s more successful and well known players, David “Raptor” Benefield has decided to no longer play poker for a living.  In fact, once school begins for him in 6 weeks, he says he will no play a single hand of poker until Christmas.  The announcement by one of the highly successful founders of online poker training site,, has taken many by surprise.

Of his attention to take time away from the game, Benefield states on the cardrunners blog that he is vowing to stay in school for at least a year before ultimately deciding on his future.  He played in 7 events at this year’s World Series of Poker, with the highlight being a 14th place finish in a $5,000 event.  In addition, he says that he has enjoyed success playing no limit hold em this summer.  However, it was during a recent losing hand at Pot Limit Omaha that made him believe that he was finally at a good mental place to decide to move on.  Following a tough beat, he states that he felt no anger, rather, he felt at peace with what had happened. To Benefield, this was the sign he felt he needed.   He said:

“I didn’t get mad, I didn’t get upset, I didn’t complain to the world about my terrible luck. I just sat there without anger, without emotion.

Now, I find it funny that for the last 5 years, I have searched for this ability to not feel pain while playing poker. This was the first time I truly experienced painlessness at the tables, and it felt really good. The funny part is that I am no longer going to be playing poker, at least for the first year I am in school. I searched so long, worked so hard to acquire this ability, and now that I seem to have it, I am moving on to something else. Perhaps this is the point where I grow bored with most things, when I feel like I have accomplished what I set out to do. I may not have won a big tourney, or beat Phil Ivey over 100k hands, but I conquered the most fearsome opponent of all, myself.”

Online response has been heavy, with many players applauding his choice, with others taking a more skeptical stance.  After all, life changes are easier said than done and moving back into the “real” world can be a shock to the system at times.

    blog comments powered by Disqus