Many punters look up to Billy Walters as the wealthiest gambler in the sports betting industry, with an estimated net worth of $500mil in 2021. Despite his imprisonment in 2017 for insider training, the imposed $10mil fine was tiny in relation to all the properties he owns. It was his brilliance in basketball and football gambling that led to his success.
Growing up in Kentucky as an orphan, Walters established the Computer Group in 1980. The company analysed sports events and outcomes, creating hundreds of statistics to see if there was a pattern. He only suffered one year of losses, with a thirty-year winning streak behind his name.
He doesn’t always place bets himself, though. Walters has a few celebrity friends that he asks to wager on his behalf. Today, he owns a $20mil private jet and seven homes in different places worldwide.
Walters was set to have seven years in prison until the 14 of February, 2022. However, with the COVID-19 outbreak posing a threat to his health, he was released in May 2020 and is spending his remaining confinement at home in Carlsbad, California.
Stepping into the world of poker, Chris Moneymaker’s net worth sits at $16mil. He started his walk into fame when he won the 2003 main event for the World Series of Poker (WSOP). He entered the tournament with $40 and left as the victor with $2.5mil, which is quite an impressive sum.
Moneymaker, a name that says it all, continues to play poker to this day. Born in 1975 in Atlanta, Georgia, his German last name is Nurmacher. The reason the family changed their surname in America is that they were in the business of making silver and gold coins.
The name suited Chris well as he went to win more poker competitions and rake in more money. News media went on to call his winning streak the ‘Moneymaker Effect’, a title that has since stuck with him. He went on to publish an autobiography about his massive win at WSOP in 2003 with the title ‘Moneymaker: How an Amateur Poker Player turned $40 into $2.5 Million at the World Series of Poker’.
Here are some other highlights from his poker career:
- 3 March 2004: Finished 2nd at the $5,000 World Poker Tour Bay 101 competition, winning $200,000.
- 6 December 2008: Finished 1st at the $1,000 APPT No-Limit Hold’em contest, winning $35,841.
- 3 March 2011: Finished 3rd at the $25,000 NBC Heads-Up Championship, winning $300,000.
- 15 March 2014: Finished 1st at the $1,800 No-Limit Hold’em Event, winning $36,259.