Writer’s Note: This is the sixth in an extended series of articles about Chris Moneymaker’s victory at the 2003 World Series of Poker and what went on behind the scenes at the legendary Binion’s Horseshoe — before, during, and after, where I worked as Director of Public Relations.
I’d also like to note that another great read was released this week at Grantland.com. Writer Eric Raskin penned an outstanding oral history of the final table, with interviews of many who witnessed poker’s most memorable moment. I urge readers to check out Raskin’s excellent article here: “When We Held Kings.”
“The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible.”
— Oscar Wilde
Part 9: Championship Day (May 20, 2003)
The 2003 World Series of Poker finale included a bit of everything.
It had intrigue, suspense, surprise, triumph, tragedy, and even a bit of mystery.
Of all the championship final tables over the past quarter century, that year’s cast of characters was right off the pages of a Hollywood script. Everybody watching the show could pick one of the finalists to root for (or against) among those nine who took seats on Friday at noon inside Benny’s Bullpen.
That final table included an astounding seven players who had won (or would later win) WSOP gold bracelets — a collection of talent unheard of since the very earliest days of the championship during the 1970′s. Chris Moneymaker, Sammy Farha, Dan Harrington, Jason Lester, Amir Vahedi, David Grey, and David Singer all now have WSOP wins. But some captivating underdogs also captured our interest — potential stars that millions of viewers would come to know through a bombardment of broadcasts later shown on ESPN. “The nine” became as famous as any characters on a hit reality TV series.Read More