A decade ago, billionaire businessman Andy Beal played in some of the most-legendary high stakes poker games in history. But it’s been years since the banker/real estate mogul has played poker in Las Vegas. That all changed this weekend, though, as Beal made his triumphant return to Vegas’ Bobby’s Room to take on Todd Brunson heads-up.
The two competed in a game of $50,000/$100,000 Limit Hold’em, with both players fronting a $5 million bankroll. And thanks to a spectator named Kyle Loman, there were plenty of tweets on how the matchup was going. After the first couple of hours, the chip stacks remained pretty even and the original 20 spectators were whittled down to just Doyle Brunson.
But after three hours, when it was around 4:00am Vegas time, even Doyle couldn’t stick around to watch his son. It didn’t matter, though, as Brunson swung the tide in his favor and took Beal’s entire $5 million stack.
It’s worth mentioning that Beal isn’t some complete amateur since he took on the world’s best poker players in 2004 and ’06. This matchup between Beal and “The Corporation,” a group consisting of Doyle, Jen Harman, Phil Ivey, Ted Forrest and others, would see Beal take an early $13.6 million lead. However, Ivey played the businessman heads-up and won $16.6 million, promptng Beal to quit the game. This story served as the inspiration for Michael Craig’s famed book The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King: Inside the Richest Poker Game of All Time.
Well, there was no Ivey there to dominate Beal this time, however, Brunson did a more-than-adequate job of beating his wealthy opponent. So will Beal limp off for another eight years after this one? Or will he return with a vengeance, much like he did in 2006 after getting handled in ’04?