Bitcoin Causes Highest Poker Stakes Ever

Imagine this: You sit down at a poker table with $9,264 and wait for a game to start. There’s a lot of money at stake, but for you this just might be an every day thing.

Large sums of money exchange hands in the online poker world on a day-to-day basis, and therefore seeing money on the table just shy of $10,000 does not make any headlines.

Fast-forward 15 months and you find out that the sum you played with back then is now worth more than $800,000.

There seems to be no end in sight when it comes to the value of online crypto currency Bitcoin, and this is also very much noticeable in the poker economy. Bitcoin poker client SealsWithClubs might be the place that breaks online poker records in the upcoming months, as the soaring Bitcoin price keeps jacking up the stakes.

In a story with similarities to the “Bitcoin pizza” and the Norwegian gentleman who bought an apartment with the Bitcoin he forgot he had, we uncovered another chapter in the wondrous world in Bitcoin.

Back in August 2012 a poker game on the Bitcoin client SealsWithClubs ran where one player was spotted with an 800,000-chip stack. On this poker client, chips are fractionalized and 1,000 chips are worth 1 Bitcoin. That stack, as visible in the screenshot below, was worth 800 Bitcoin at $11.58 per coin or $9,264 total.

The mandatory bets, the small and big blind, today in that game would be $3,560/$7,120, the biggest stakes ever in online poker history.

The big mystery that remains to be unsolved for now, who were the guys playing for those, what later turned out to be, huge stakes in 2012 for Bitcoin? The user name shows Isildur1, but we have not been able to confirm if it was the “real” Isildur1.

Viktor Blom, who plays under the Isildur1 handle on FullTilt Poker, was a part of the biggest pot in poker history. Blom and Finnish poker legend Patrik Antonius played a pot worth $1,356,946 in November 2009, which is the biggest pot in online poker history to date.

2,500 BTC Profit in Six Weeks
Another player who goes by the name “Fitzroy” on SealsWithClubs managed to turn 1 BTC into 2,500 BTC over the course of six weeks playing poker. These 2,500 BTC were worth $35,000 at the time he won them.

If he held on to all of them, they would net him over $2.5 million right now.

Going forward, people will look back even more on wagered, spent and lost Bitcoin as there seems to be no ceiling to what the value can be.

The encrypted code had been one of the hottest topics of 2013 and since the Chinese equivalent of Google, Baidu, started accepting Bitcoin, the currency has not been below $400.

About SealsWithClub: The Bitcoin poker client went live in August 2011 when the price of one coin hovered around $2. This poker client only accepts Bitcoin as a currency and all games are played for Bitcoin.

Remko Rinkema

Remko Rinkema has covered the biggest poker tournaments in the world since 2008, including many WSOP, EPT, Aussie Millions, APPT, MCOP and Unibet Open events. As an in-depth interview and story enthusiast he tries to do things a little differently. Besides the usual writings Rinkema grabs every chance to appear on podcasts, live streams and in the occasional video.

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