Best of All Time

General Discussion by redwhiteandblue Posted

I got a major battle with a friend of mine about who the best poker players of all-time are. He gave me five names and I did the same and it got ugly.

I took these five:
Ungar, Brunson, Ivey, Negreanu and Seidel.

So settle the argument - how is my list?

(I have money on this by the way.)


  1. It's not a bad list. But I'll take Chip Reese over Seidel. And how much fun would it have been to have seen Johnny Moss take on Ivey?

  2. I think Ungar is over-rated. He's definitely one of the great players but drugs or not, he kept going broke. It's like an singer who does a couple of incredible songs but can't be consistent. I'll probably catch hell for this but Hellmuth has earned his place here. And I agree with Flash - I'd take Reese over Seidel too.

  3. Ungar was the best poker player ever. I get the off the table issues but when he played there was no one better. I'd take Seidel off there too if you're talking tourneys and go with Hellmuth as well. Seidel won a lot of high stakes tourneys to pad his numbers. If you're going mixed games, Mizrachi has to be in that mix.

  4. Brunson, Ivey, Ungar, Chip, and Puggy Pearson!

  5. Overall, like the list. One guy not to forget about is Carlos Mortensen. Nearly final tabled WSOP main again this last year and a lot of people consider him the best of the world champs since 2000.

  6. I hate to say it but you can't leave Hellmuth off this list. What he has done in the game is amazing. One guy who I think would have a chance from the online world if he played more live is Paul Volpe. He gets overlooked because of guys like Isildur and Dwan but he's shown what he can do at the WSOP and WPT. He's not there yet but I don't know too many players that would want to play him with everything on the line.

  7. I can see everyone's arguments here but what about Johnny Chan? He was pretty darn good too and beat Seidel when it counted.

  8. That list is pretty legit. I think the Seidel/Hellmuth debate has the most traction but I wouldn't go to war with you on it.

  9. Anyone notice two of the top five money winners of all time aren't on this list? Hmmm...

  10. Johnny Moss and Amarillo Slim are rolling over in their graves. Those two and Doyle were the best of their generation and seeing them in their primes take on Phil and Daniel would have been amazing to watch.

  11. It would have been interesting to see how guys like Moss and Slim would have adapted to today's style of play. Back then three-bet was a dirty word. Brunson obviously did it, Slim not as much. I'm sure over time they would have figured it out but if that matchup with Moss/Slim vs Ivey/Negreanu, Ivey Negreanu would tear them apart at least for a while. Ungar was one of the few guys that could have made it in any era.

  12. I'm in the Reese over Seidel camp. Amazing all-around player.

  13. I dunno but I wish Stu was still around. If they could do a 24 hour high stakes marathon game HU with him and Ivey, that would be a must watch. People's brains would light on fire.

  14. Can't believe someone in here questioned Ungar. I doubt you could find anyone (who isn't a moron) who wouldn't say Stu is the best of all time much less taking him off a top five list. The question wasn't who was the best on and off the felt. It is scary what he'd be doing now and what his numbers would be if he were alive and has shaken off the demons. 15-18 bracelets wouldn't have been out of the question. He was that good.

  15. @SuperGenius You must have gotten hit with an anvil and fallen off a cliff. He didn't go broke because of poker - it was everything else. No one could beat him and if he were alive today he's still be kicking the hell out of everyone!

  16. Ungar is such a sad story. But there was almost no helping the guy. When you have the people around you he did trying to help him and they couldn't, you know how the story is going to end. That being said, Ungar beats Ivey heads-up. :)

  17. Got a push on this. I had to have consensus be 4 out of 5 for the push and 5/5 for the win. Nice to be right!

  18. Well, it's not like it's THAT difficult. Honestly, I think the top 5 are pretty clear - your first four and Hellmuth. People may hate the guy but with what he's done in the game spanning 3 different types of players and still winning is amazing.

  19. Man, where is Amarillo Slim? One of the slickest players ever and knew how to work people like possibly no one else in the history of the game. I know he had a rough go of it late in life but was pretty damn good too.