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Billy Baxter - poker player

Billy Baxter
Baxter in the 2006 World Series of Poker
Born William E. Baxter
1940 (age 75-76)
Augusta, Georgia, U.S.
World Series of Poker
Bracelet(s) 7
Money finish(es) 30
Highest ITM
Main Event finish
22nd, 1997
World Poker Tour
Title(s) None
Final table(s) 2
Money finish(es) 9
Information accurate as of 12 September 2010.

William E. Baxter, Jr. (born 1940) is an American professional poker player and sports bettor. He has won numerous tournament titles in his career as a professional poker player, including seven World Series of Poker bracelets.

He was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2006.

Early life

Born in Augusta, Georgia, Baxter started his gambling career like many others of his age by gambling in the pool halls. When he was 14 he discovered he had a talent for hustling pool games.

By the time he was 16, he had saved $5,000 from his hustling money, and when he turned 18 he was old enough to head to the taverns, where he discovered his next big love - poker.

Poker career

In 1975 he took a honeymoon trip to Hawaii and ended up in the Las Vegas Valley, Nevada on the way back. He and his new bride lived in a hotel there for nine months while Baxter played poker for a living. It was there that he met fellow legends Doyle Brunson, Puggy Pearson and eventually Stu Ungar.

Baxter has won seven World Series of Poker bracelets. As of 2010, he ranks alongside Men Nguyen (7) and just behind Erik Seidel (with 8), Johnny Moss (9) Phil Ivey, Johnny Chan, Doyle Brunson (10 each) and Phil Hellmuth (14). All of Baxter's bracelets are in lowball games, notably Razz, Deuce-to-Seven and California Lowball (draw).

He also ranks second all-time in non-Hold'em bracelets (7) behind Phil Ivey (10). Ivey won his tenth non-Hold'em bracelet in 2014.

Baxter is also known for staking Stu Ungar to the buy-in for Ungar's victory in the main event of the 1997 WSOP. Thereafter, he entered into an arrangement to stake Ungar in tournaments, but this was cut short by Ungar's continuing personal problems which led to the latter's death in 1998.

As of 2011, his total live tournament winnings exceed $2,300,000. His 30 cashes at the WSOP account for $1,082,304 of those winnings.

World Series Of Poker Bracelets

Year Tournament Prize (US$)
1975 $1,000 Deuce to Seven Draw $35,000
1978 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw $90,000
1982 $10,000 Deuce to Seven Draw $95,000
1982 $2,500 Ace to Five Draw $48,750
1987 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw $153,000
1993 $5,000 Deuce to Seven Draw $130,500
2002 $1,500 Razz $64,860

Baxter's poker income court case

Although Baxter is best known for his on-table poker accomplishments and staking Stu Ungar, he is also known for the case of William E. Baxter Jr. vs. the United States.

It was the judge's ruling that Baxter's poker winnings should be classified as "earned income", contrary to its previous classification of "unearned income" which was taxable up to 70 percent. Thus, in the process, Baxter's victory in this case has helped all American poker players by providing equal tax status to those earning a living as professional poker players.