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Hall of Fame: Archie Karas (Read 26064 times)
Five Fingers
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Hall of Fame: Archie Karas
Jun 22nd, 2007, 2:47pm
 

 
In December 1992, Archie Karas had lost nearly $2 million in high stakes card games at the legal casinos in the Los Angeles area.  He drove into Las Vegas with just $50 in his pocket.  
 
He headed to the Mirage, where a fellow gambler lent him $10,000 to take a shot at the biggest action in the card room, a $100 to $400 Razz game. He promptly won $20,000. Archie now had the seeds of a bankroll that would eventually lead to what Vegas cognoscenti now refer to simply as The Run.  
 
In less than a week Archie Karas used his stake to amass over $2 million in pool winnings, before taking the Binion's Horseshoe by storm.  
 
Karas entered the Horseshoe and defyed anyone to beat him at a one-on-one poker match.  
 
In April 1993, during the World Series of poker at Binion's Horseshoe, his first challenger was David "Chip" Reese, one of the few living members of the Poker Hall of Fame and generally considered the best all-around poker player in the world. In approximately two weeks, playing up to $8000 and $16000 blinds, Karas beat Reese for another $2,000,000. Resigning from the game, Reese supposedly told Karas: "God made your balls a little bigger. You're too good."  
 
After vanquishing Reese, few players were inclined to challenge the man who was calling himself the uncrowned world champion. One who did was Stu Ungar, another two-time world champ known for his hyperaggressive, raise-it-to-the-roof style. Playing $5,000-$10,000 limit Stud and Razz, Ungar lost $900,000 to Karas in just six hours!  
 
Next, the legendary Brunson took his shot at breaking Karas. The best he could do was break even. "We stopped after awhile," Karas reports. "He didn't want to play high enough."  
 
In quick succession, Hall of Famers and world champions came and went, including Puggy Pearson and Johnny Chan. At the end of the The Run, Karas had busted 15 of the world's greatest and won $7 million at the poker table.  
 
Of the poker community's elite, only Chan beat Karas, after losing to him three straight times.  
 
At his request, the Horseshoe closed down a craps table for him. As armed security guards surrounded the table Karas rolled to winning sessions of $1.6 million, $900,000, $800,000, $1.3 million and $4 million. The craps, Archie told me, was merely a diversion when the poker action dried up. "I know I'm taking the worst of it with the dice," Archie said. "But nobody would play poker with me for that much."  
 
At one point Karas had all of Binion's chocolate-colored $5,000 chips.  
 
When the run was over, Karas was up over $17 million dollars between poker and craps, all at the Horseshoe.  
 
Karas did not stop, and ultimately he lost everything back in the Horseshoe, eventually going bust. Binion's still estimates that the casino lost $1.3 million to Karas, but it is widely accepted that Karas unsuccessfully wagered the remainder of his run around town.  
 
Karas has a standing offer: he'll play anyone at poker for any amount, preferably for $500,000 or more.  
 
Asked if he would be willing to compete for every penny he has Karas replied.  
 
"In a second."  
 
"I've gambled more money than anyone in the history of the planet.  What most gamblers make in their whole life I gamble in one roll of the dice. Unless the casinos decide to raise their limits after I'm gone, I don't think anyone will ever gamble more than I have. I'm the biggest ever."  
 
"I've been a millionaire over 50 times and dead broke more than I can count. Probably 1,000 times in my life. But I sleep the same whether I have ten or ten million dollars in my pocket."  
 
 
Source: cigaraficionado.com/Cigar/CA_Profiles/People_Profile/0,2540,67,00.html
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Five Fingers
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Who is Archie Karas?
Reply #1 - Jun 22nd, 2007, 3:26pm
 
After an exhaustive search of the world wide web, we found zero photos of this poker legend.
 
Can you do better?  We would like a picture on file to give Archie his rightful place in the Poker Jokers Hall of Fame.
 
 Smiley
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GoodFellaz
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Re: Hall of Fame: Archie Karas
Reply #2 - Sep 10th, 2008, 10:06pm
 





 
You've got to understand something, Money means nothing to me. I don't value it. ... I have no fear. I don't care if I lose it. -Archie Karas
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pokerbigshot
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Re: Hall of Fame: Archie Karas
Reply #3 - Jan 16th, 2009, 11:49pm
 
Im Pretty sure that this guy was in last years WSOP he is in like his 80s now and i remember them saying how he made a couple of million in such little time then he lost it all again.......wow talk about up and down swings.
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Kyle
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