Las Vegas Sun

September 21, 2017

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Learn poker from the master


UNLV Special Collections

Even though 22 men entered the Seventh World Series of Poker at Binion’s Horsehoe, it was Doyle Brunson that walked away victorious. To enter the tournament, held in 1976, players paid $10,000. Brunson walked away with $220,000.

If You Go

Throughout the 2009 world Series of Poker, players and fans will get the chance to learn from the pros, with Mike “Mad Genius” Caro and legend Doyle Brunson—he of the 10 WSOP winning bracelets—hosting strategy and technique seminars. The free clinic, presented courtesy of the Rio, will be offered in four sessions during June. The Sun's sister entertainment publication, the Las Vegas Weekly, recently caught up with Brunson for some advance notes.

Do you have any sort of good luck charm when you play?

I have a lucky card protector — a little black rock that a guy gave to me 25 or 30 years ago with a picture of Casper the Friendly Ghost. Casper is famous. I used to rent him out to other players. I got $15,000 in rentals for him. Howard Lederer gave me $3,500 to put in my will that when I die, he gets Casper. My daughter Pam got Casper when she started playing poker, and I had to go and buy Casper back from Howard. I gave him $7,500 to get Casper back so Pam could have him after I’m gone.

What is the origin of your nickname, Texas Dolly?

Jimmy Snyder, who worked for the Las Vegas Sun, started writing about poker players in the 1970s, and I lived in Texas where it was illegal, so I told him not to use my name. So he referred to me as Texas Doyle. He and I were friends, and he called me Doyley. Some reporter heard that and put it together as Texas Dolly.

You embrace technology via a frequently updated blog; do you Twitter?

I usually do it in the morning when I’m sitting at my computer. I haven’t used my phone to tweet yet, but I get a lot of requests to, so maybe I will during this tournament. I’m planning on doing well in this tournament.

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