Gus Hansen, a professional poker player, was born in Denmark, and currently lives in Monaco. As he does not follow a strict style of playing, many in the poker world earlier believed that his wins were a result of sheer luck. However, he proved them wrong by winning the open titles at three World Poker Tours (WPT), which led to him being inducted to the WPT Poker Walk of Fame. He is the only poker player to have won so many WPT titles. He has also made it to seven final tables and had nine money finishes at the WPT.
Hansen started playing poker professionally around 1997, prior to which he was a world renowned backgammon player. He has had seven money finishes at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) tournaments and won a coveted WSOP bracelet too. He has had two money finishes at the European Poker Tour and reached one final table in it. His career tournament earnings are close to $9 million.
Beginning of Hansen’s Professional Poker Career
During the 1990s, Hansen developed an interest in gin rummy and backgammon games. He visited clubs in which these games were played. There, he met Huckleberry Seed, one of the top professional poker players in the world, who introduced Hansen to poker. Following this, Hansen participated in the 1996 WSOP tournament. However, he was eliminated through the events held on the first day. This motivated him to dedicate his time to poker, so he stopped playing backgammon. He then started playing No-Limit Hold’em, and mixed his game play to develop a style that was his own.
Making a Name for Himself
In 2002, Hansen started playing professionally in Las Vegas. He won the WPT that year, at the No Limit Hold’em event with a $10,000 buy-in. This was the Diamond World Poker Classic, which earned him over $556,000. At the LA Poker Classic WPT, Hansen won at the $10,000 No Limit Hold’em Championship. This brought him more than $532,000.
2003 saw Hansen participate in the Bad Boys of Poker tournament (invitation only) and win it. The following year, Hansen played at the Caribbean Adventure tournament, where he won a fourth WPT title. He earned over $455,000 through the tournament.
Hansen came in third at the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Stars tournament held in 2005, at San Jose where he won more than $300,000. The poker world saw Hansen bring in four more WPT titles that year. He also played at five final WPT tables, earning him a coveted place in the league of famous professional poker players. In 2005, Hansen was given one of the first places in the Poker Walk of Fame, which was till then occupied only by top poker players – James Garner and Doyle Brunson. He attended the Poker Invitational in Monaco by FullTilltPoker.com, and went on to play the final table.
In 2006, Hansen played againstDaniel Negreanu, a tournament and cash games player and won a pot worth $575,700. This was aired on the GSN High Stakes Poker show. He also won the Poker Superstars Invitational Grand Final (inaugural), with a $400,000 buy-in featuring a table with some of the most renowned poker players in the world. He brought in $1,000,0000 at the one-table event.
WSOP Gold Bracelet and Aussie Millions Wins
Hansen played in the Aussie Millions Main Event and won $1 million in 2007. The next year, he was placed second at the WPT World Championship for $25,000, and took back $1.7 million. At the WSOP World Championship Mixed event held in 2008, he came in tenth. In 2007, Hansen won the first Poker After Dark show.
Hansen earned his first gold bracelet at a WSOP tournament in 2010, when he played in the No-Limit Hold’em High Roller Heads-Up Event with a buy-in of £10,000. The event, held in London, saw Hansen take out five poker players, one of whom was Phil Ivey, an accomplished poker professional. Hansen’s final was against Jim Collopy who he beat at the opening match of the best-of-three series. Collopy went on to win on the second day, but got beaten by Hansen on the third.
As a renowned poker player, Hansen plays quite regularly at the Bellagio’s big games. He also plays several high-stakes games online at the second largest poker site in the world – Full Tilt Poker. He was also the house professional and founding partner of another poker site which was established in 2003, and sold later in 2005.