Full Name: Phillip Jerome Hellmuth Jr.
Nickname: Poker Brat
Date of Birth: July 16, 1964
Residence: Palo Alto, California
Net Worth: $20 million
Hair Color: Brown
Eye Color: Blue
Spouse: Katherine Sanborn
Children: 2 sons
Phil Hellmuth is by all accounts one of the best poker players in history. The 57-year-old from Madison, Wisconsin has made it to a World Series Of Poker Final Table on 64 separate occasions and has won 16 of the event’s coveted bracelets. He also has five Final Table appearances on the World Poker Tour (though the WPT title has eluded him).
Fittingly enough, Hellmuth is a physical behemoth on the pro poker tour as well –– his 6-foot-7 stature placing him a full head above most of his competitors. But it’s still his clout at the tables that makes the greatest impression. Even Doyle Brunson –– one of the greats of the game and a competitor the Las Vegas Review Journal described last year as “poker’s wise man” –– has referred to Hellmuth as the greatest No-Limit Texas Hold’em (or “NLH”) player in the world.
I just saw Phil Helmuth has cashed 154times at the WSOP so he has probably entered 200 tournaments. He is the best NLH tournament player in the world, in my opinion. https://t.co/CJkPlO0y6I
— Doyle Brunson (@TexDolly) December 17, 2020
Let’s take a closer look at Hellmuth’s accomplishments, net worth, and recent activity.
Phil Hellmuth actually has a particularly interesting career, in that while he was one of the defining figures of the early-millennium “poker boom,” he was actually a pro long before it began. The 165-time WSOP money finisher actually started his pro career fresh off his third year of college, when he dropped out of the University of Wisconsin to pursue the game.
Hellmuth’s first real taste of success at the pro level came in 1988, when he made his way to a cash finish and came in 33rd at the World Series Of Poker (losing to Johnny Chan –– another legend of the game who would go on to win in ’98). He would go on to secure cash finishes in each of the next three decades, establishing himself as a dominant figure over a 30-year-plus span (continuing to the present day). Hellmuth’s 16th and most recent WSOP bracelet win came just last year when he earned just under $85,000 at one of the tournament’s events.
It goes without saying that when you win steadily at the world’s biggest poker competitions over a span of several decades, you’re going to become a wealthy person. Indeed, looking back at Hellmuth’s accomplishments and cash finishes exposes you to a nearly dizzying list of large sums, all pocketed by the biggest man in poker. And as tends to be the case with the pros, we can’t really say for certain what he might be winning on his own time or in online games, either.
Gauging celebrity net worth is never an entirely precise matter, but Phil Hellmuth’s profile page at Poker.org, updated in the spring of 2021, estimated that he was worth about $20 million. That’s an awful lot of money to amass playing poker, though the same page also notes that his stated goal is to become a billionaire. While that’s still a stretch away, with Hellmuth’s ability to attract sponsors and his undeniable clout at the tables it’s not impossible.
Really, there’s not a whole lot to say about Hellmuth’s recent activity, because it’s about the same as it always is! The Hall of Famer simply likes to play a lot of poker, and can usually be found at whatever major event happens to be going on.
Most recently, Hellmuth competed at the 2022 U.S. Poker Open (where he didn’t fare as well as usual). And according to GolfMagic.com, he also took part in a charity event for Tiger Woods’s foundation this spring (evidently shortly after Woods played The Masters).
We hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little bit more about one of the biggest personalities and greatest winners in the poker world. If you want to read more about another athlete who is considered among the best of their time, check out our profile on cricket star Sachin Tendulkar here.