Ten-time World Series of Poker bracelet winner Doyle Brunson has died at the age of 89, his family announced Sunday.
The cause of death was not disclosed.
“It is with a heavy heart that we announce the passing of our father, Doyle Brunson,” his family said in a statement. which was posted on Twitter by Brian Balsbaugh, Brunson’s agent. “He was a beloved Christian man, husband, father and grandfather. We’ll have more to say in the coming days as we honor his legacy. Please keep Doyle and our family in your prayers. Rest in peace.”
Known as “Texas Dolly” and the “Godfather of Poker,” Brunson was a member of the Poker Hall of Fame, inducted in 1988 at the age of 54. He has over $6 million in live tournament earnings. His endless accolades included 10 WSOP bracelets (tied with Phil Ivey and Johnny Chan for second place all-time; Phil Hellmuth tops with 16), 26 WSOP final tables and a World Poker Tour win.
Brunson won the Main Event of the World Series of Poker two consecutive years (1976 and 1977) and made the final table of that event three more times. The starting hand of 10-2 is known as Doyle Brunson because he won the WSOP Main Event both years with that hand.
Rest in peace to the greatest legend of them all. Thank you for being the perfect gamer and gentleman. No one will ever take your place. pic.twitter.com/riE35PCrQh
— WSOP – World Series of Poker (@WSOP) May 15, 2023
He was rarely seen without his cowboy hat and big smile, a look that made him stand out even more during the poker boom of the early 2000s. As he got older, his retirement from the WSOP Main Event became a memorable moment each year as it was announced to all players in the tournament. They rose from their chairs and gave the legend a standing ovation as he left the room. His last WSOP money came in 2018 when he made the final table in the $10,000 2-7 lowball event.
Beyond the tournament, Brunson was a regular at the highest stakes cash games in the world. He was an integral part of the Las Vegas poker scene for decades and taught millions to play through his books Super System and Super System 2. The original “Super System” is often referred to as the Bible of poker. Brunson was an ambassador for the game and numerous tournaments were named in his honor.
Brunson was born in Longworth, Texas. He was a basketball standout at Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene, Texas, but knee injuries prevented him from playing the sport professionally.
He is survived by his wife Louise; his son Todd; and his daughter Pam.
Todd Brunson is also a member of the Poker Hall of Fame; When he won his bracelet in 2005, the Brunsons became the first father-son duo to both win WSOP gold.