TJ Cloutier Pawns WSOP Bracelet

by Lou on February 2, 2010

This is a sad story and a cautionary tale for those who think playing poker for a living is a bed of roses. Well, it’s not. And it’s especially tough when a poker player has other leaks like craps and sports betting, and when times get tough, making ends meet is not always easy.
TJ Cloutier earned millions at the poker table, and is generally regarded as the “best player never to win the World Series of Poker’s main event.” Still, TJ had to sell his 2005 $5,000 no-limit hold’em bracelet to a Plano, TX pawn shop—presumably to make ends meet.
The bracelet was then sold by the pawnbroker on eBay for slightly more than $4,000, which must be an ego-crushing blow to the 71-year old pro who has won six World Series of Poker events and has more than $9 million in tournaments winnings during his career.

While no one knows for sure why he sold the bracelet, Cloutier is well known for enjoying long sessions at the craps table and most observers surmise that his losses in the pit continue to exceed his winning at poker.
Online poker site Cake Poker purchased Cloutier’s bracelet and plans to return it to him in the near future, which would be a sweet ending to a sad story, but it’s a sad story nevertheless—a story we hope won’t repeat itself in the future.

{ 1 comment }

Disciples of Poker February 2, 2010 at 5:37 pm


Too often the dark side of poker goes unreported. While it makes for great TV, the money passing hands on high stakes poker is unfathomable to me. It makes you wonder where the tv poker stars of yesterday are wallowing.

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