All eyes are on Billy Baxter within the $1,000 Seniors Occasion on the WSOP, as he’s third in chips getting into the ultimate desk. [Image: Flickr.com / World Poker Tour]
Billy Baxter runs deep at WSOP
It’s been 21 years since Billy Baxter final left the World Sequence of Poker with a bracelet. This week, he has an opportunity to win one other, making the ultimate desk of the 2023 WSOP $1,000 Seniors Occasion. Along with his identify showing in headlines throughout poker media, youthful readers may not perceive why his deep run within the occasion has attracted a lot consideration.
Even older readers is likely to be forgiven for having missed or forgotten his significance, however they shouldn’t have. It’s not simply because he needs to be remembered as an incredible poker participant — although he’s that — however for his wider contributions to the sport.
Billy Baxter has seven WSOP bracelets, tied with Males “the Grasp” Nguyen, and behind solely six different gamers on the all-time checklist.
The late, nice Doyle Brunson as soon as mentioned of Baxter that “he provides you that country-bumpkin smile and that good ol’Georgia-boy accent, will get you laughing and having a superb time. Then you definately lookup and he has bought your cash.”
he gained at the very least one bracelet in every of the following decade till the 2010s
Baxter isn’t just a few old-fashioned professional both – he’s a very long time stalwart of the sport. The primary of his WSOP bracelets is from 1975, the sixth WSOP ever performed. Since then, he gained at the very least one bracelet in every of the following decade till the 2010s.
Throughout that interval, he was often called an incredible poker participant, but additionally as an incredible all-round gambler. He began out hustling pool as an adolescent and went on to play gin rummy and guess on sports activities professionally.
Baxter had a detailed relationship with Stu Ungar, who was not solely a prodigy at poker, but additionally at rummy. The pair performed each video games, and although Ungar may need been the higher participant, Baxter often got here out up total due to all of the facet bets.
Regardless of their aggressive relationship, Baxter was the one to again Ungar in his well-known 1997 WSOP Essential Occasion run, Ungar’s third Essential Occasion win and his final main poker look.
The primary skilled poker participant
That profession needs to be memorable sufficient. however maybe Baxter’s largest contribution to the poker world was not on the card desk, however in courtroom. Billy Baxter is arguably one of many first American skilled poker gamers, at the very least so far as the IRS is worried.
playing winnings reclassified as earned earnings
It was Baxter that sued the IRS to permit poker gamers to be handled as professionals. William E. Baxter Jr. vs. america of America noticed his playing winnings reclassified as earned earnings, lowering the tax price and permitting him to deduct bills.
Each participant who fills out Schedule C on their 1040 owes these financial savings partially to Baxter.
For all these causes, Billy Baxter was entered into the Poker Corridor of Fame in 2006 and is being cheered on in his seek for bracelet quantity eight.