PokerWorks presents the starting line-up for the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event final table, the final nine that survived a grueling 10-day trial of poker competition with a field of 6,352 hopefuls. Each member of the final nine will be profiled in the coming days — in no particular order of importance.
David Benefield is an online poker legend known as "Raptor." Benefield's poker history is the kind that sends everyone to the tables looking for a big score. The 27-year-old started online with $450 and turned it into $20,000. To date, Benefield has won millions and he's the one that bought a half-million-dollar house with Tom "durrrr" Dwan in Fort Worth at the age of 20, and he's never stopped moving up. He's now one of the November Nine in the 2013 World Series of Poker Main Event.
Benefield has been credited with creating the system that online players user today when they grind multiple tables — the quad monitor set-up.
Benefield has racked up other scores but not as big as his November Nine final table pay-off. He finished eighth in the €50,000 Majestic Super High Roller at the 2012 WSOP Europe for $150,035. And in sixth place in the 2010 Event #17 $5,000 No Limit Hold’em for $135,718. Other live accomplishments: 13th in the 2008 WSOP Event #1 $10,000 World Championship Pot Limit Hold’em for $41,360; 73rd in the 2008 WSOP Main Event for $77,200; and 10th in Event #50 $10,000 World Championship Pot Limit Omaha for $53,721 the same year.
A former instructor at CardRunners and member of Ship It Holla Ballas, Benefield reached a decision to retire from poker at one point: “For some reason, I am just not all that happy with what I am doing. I have made a ton of money, have set myself up for life, but can’t seem to get any fulfillment out of poker. I am working on some lifestyle changes, and they are coming along nicely.” That was in 2008, this is now.
Benefield skipped last year's WSOP Main Event but 2013 was his fifth Main Event. He's coming into the November Nine with the shortest stack — 6.375 million — but his seat draw could play to a huge advantage. He's got the four big stacks on his right, chip leader JC Tran is on his immediate right, which gives him the advantage of deciding his move after the big stacks move. All the shorter stacks are on his left and his raises may add some leverage to his game with the short stacks.
Watch Kristy Arnett's interview with Benefield:
Our introduction to other featured November Nine players, to date:
We have more on the way, be sure to check back.
Image courtesy of PokerNews.com.