Stories from the Poker Boom

PokerStars from the Beginning

PokerstarsPokerStars opened its cyber doors to the Internet public on the inauspicious day of September 11, 2001. I first became involved with the project about eight months earlier, one of three "poker people" working with mostly "software people".

Over the years the company went from a dozen people, to a small entrepreneurial group, to a big entrepreneurial outfit, to an international private company mostly run by employees but still controlled by the entrepreneurs, to being sold to a public company now traded on NASDAQ.

Simultaneously, the Poker Boom exploded in 2003 with the launch of the World Poker Tour and Chris Moneymaker's win at the World Series of Poker. To the best of my recollection, here are some stories about PokerStars and its evolution from startup to sale, as well as other tales from the Poker Boom.

Chris Ferguson and PokerStars
The story of how Chris Ferguson almost became the face of PokerStars (1/2/18)

A Tale of Two Cardrooms
PokerStars vs. Full Tilt Business Choices Pre-Black Friday (1/4/18)

When Google Gave Party Poker a Death Penalty
and who got the hundreds of millions of dollars Party lost (1/23/18)

The Evolution of the Online Poker Industry
From the days of entrepreneurial innovation to corporate boardrooms (3/16/18)

Sponsored Poker Players
Sponsorship in the post-boom, corporate-think era (1/13/18)

The Saga of Paradise Poker
Doing everything "right" but still ending up wrong (1/3/18)

Amarillo Slim and PokerStars
When Amarillo Slim almost became the face of PokerStars (1/8/18)

Diversity Makes a (Poker) Boom, Not Monotony
Innovation made the boom, doing the same thing over and over makes stagnation (1/5/18)

The Poker Plateau
How the poker boom continues, even in a somewhat stagnant state (1/28/18)

Beta Males and the Poker Plateau
What happens when mediocre players think they are superstars (3/12/18)

Stupidest Cheater in Online Poker History
Suppose you could see all the cards, and you still lost money (2/11/18)

How PokerStars Got Its Name
A Poker Update article on the origin of the name Galaxy Poker PokerStars

Not Boom stories, here are some other weird, amusing or interesting non-strategy poker stories
When Flop Games Come to California
The seed of the seed of the seed of the poker boom

The Hazards of Being a Poker Role Model
When a lunatic says: "I Learned That From You" (3/6/18)

Playing the Only Limit Five Card Draw Poker Tournament in the Past 25 Years
When your opponent stands pat and you have... (3/20/18)

Poker Dealing Stories
Three stories from dealing "in the box"

Poker Suckouts
Two incredible hands, the first a suckout and the second an anti-suckout

Life's Rich Pageant
Following up a 1000-1 suckout with a 330-1 the next hand

The Best Omaha Hand I've Ever Seen
Having absolutely everything in a hand, except good timing