The Legend Doyle Brunson Joins the Main Event, Bags for Day 2

WSOP 2021 Main Doyle Brunson

3 minutes

Last Updated: November 6, 2021

It's been a little while since we've seen the man who rightfully has the nickname “The Godfather of Poker” take his seat at the World Series of Poker.

Now 88 years old, Doyle Brunson took a step back from tournament poker a few years ago. With tournaments lasting for eight or more hours a day, Brunson said he no longer had the stamina to do it, and who could blame him?

But, it seems the Hall of Famer has changed his mind because Doyle is back in the mix at the 2021 WSOP.

Brunson joined the Super Seniors Event a few days back, and his presence created quite the buzz at the Rio. Everyone was excited to see him back at the tables, especially since his arrival wasn’t expected.

Playing in the Super Seniors is one thing, but I didn't think Doyle would go for the Main Event. It's, after all, one of the most grueling tournaments of the series, with very long days.

Yet, the Texan surprised everyone, registering for the very first day of the 2021 WSOP Main Event and making it through the day.

Brunson Back on the Grind

As you might know, the 2021 Main Event finally kicked off on Thursday, November 4, with the first of six scheduled Day 1s. Traditionally, early days don’t attract big-name players as they prefer to go for the later ones.

This year, however, it was a different situation, as perhaps the biggest poker legend joined the fray.

Dolye Brunson 2021 WSOP

This was the first Main Event the 10-time bracelet winner has played since 2013, so naturally, all eyes were on him. Everyone was curious to know how Brunson would navigate the field of 523 players who registered for the opening day, and Doyle did not disappoint.

Once again, he showed he got the game, finding his way through the minefield that is the Main Event, finishing the day with more poker chips than he started with, and bagging 150,000.

So, Doyle will be coming back for Day 2 to continue his WSOP journey and perhaps add to his legacy with another bracelet. Yes, the odds are against him, but that’s nothing new for the man who was one of the players who started the Main Event legacy.

Remembering the Good Old Days

The WSOP Main Event was invented back in 1970, and the tournament was held every year since (although the 2020 version took place online due to coronavirus concerns).

Doyle Brunson was one of the original seven players who played in the first Main Event, the brainchild of Benny Binion, a legendary Las Vegas casino owner who saw something others did not at the time.

But even Binion couldn’t predict how popular Texas Hold’em would become in the future.

In a brief interview at this year's WSOP, Brunson remembered a conversation he had with Benny back in the day, saying Binion told him he hoped that one day there would be 100 players in the Main Event.

For almost two decades now, there have been thousands.

So, to have Doyle playing in the 2021 Main Event is a special treat. There are very few people around who still remember these early days of poker, and Brunson loves sharing stories from that period. It was certainly a very different time.

As for the Texan, he says he is happy to be back in the mix. The last year was hard on him as he spent most of it inside his house with very little outside interaction.

On his Twitter, Brunson explained that he was staying put primarily out of concern for his wife, Louise, who’s been having some health issues, so that took precedence over poker.

But now, the legend is back on the felt, and it will be exciting to see how Doyle gets on once cards are back in the air for Day 2. There is no doubt that Brunson making a deep run would create a lot of buzz, so fingers crossed that poker gods send some good run his way!

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