Michael Phelps: Swimmer Turns Poker Pro

2nd February, 2010

After a significant absence from the world of poker, Michael Phelps, the 14 time Olympic Gold swimmer, couldn’t stay away from the tables any longer.

Phelps participated in the Borgata Winter Open in the $2,000 heads up championship, being one of the 64 players who joined the event late last week.

It’s never been a secret that Phelps loves poker, regularly taking part in friendly games, growing close to big name professionals such as Doyle Brunson. Phelps uses an anonymous alias regularly to enter online poker tournament and certainly wins his fair share.

However, Michael Phelps has kept himself out of the spotlight during the past year after the dramatic photo of him using a bong was published worldwide. As a result, Phelps has been trying to shake off his bad boy image which means having to cut back on public poker games.

Nonetheless, Michael was back on the felt at the Borgato making it through to the second day. The star swimmer lost to Jeff Madsen in the third round and beat pros Adam Gerber and Paul Wasicka in another bracket.

Back in 2008, Phelps got to the final table of the Caesars Palace Classic Poker event which was a $1500 buy in. He finished ninth at event 2, out of more than 150 players, taking home $5,000.

In an interview last year, poker pro Daniel Negreanu said that Phelps was feeling the pressure as he was under a lot of scrutiny for everything that he does, but he predicted that the ‘bong incident’ would blow over in time. “What’s the big deal, really?” said Negreanu. “I’d squash it.”

By Tom

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