Chip Reese could have been a good lawyer but instead he became a great poker player. He has even been acclaimed as the best one that ever lived. He was a man that truly lived gambling which was obvious in his nickname Chip. His real name was David Edward. Chip Reese passed away in December 2007 leaving many wondering what could have been had he continued his high level poker gaming.
A Gambler was Born
As a young boy Chip Reese suffered from rheumatic fever. This led to him having to stay home for about a year. Since there wasn’t much for him to do all day his mother taught him to play several card and board games. This is where Chip sees the beginning of his career as a gambler. Before he even started school he was beating fifth-graders in poker.
Law or Gambling
Chip Reese did well in school. In high school he won an Ohio State Championship of Debate and went on to participate in the National Finals. He turned down Harvard University and attended Dartmouth College where he was a member of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity. He majored in economics but what most of his fellow students from that time remember about him is his poker talents, he even beat some of his professors!
When the choice came down to studying law at Stanford Law School or going to Las Vegas to play cards he choose the latter and this is something he didn’t regret. He didn’t even return to pack up his belongings but had someone else do it or him so that he could stay on playing in Las Vegas.
Chip Reese participated in the writing of Doyle Brunson’s book Super System. He contributed with his expert knowledge of Seven Card Stud Poker. In 1978 he won the $1,000 Seven Card Stud Split event in the World Series of Poker. In 1982 he won the WSOP $5,000 Seven Card Stud tournament. In 1991 he was inducted in the Poker Hall of Fame and at the time he was the youngest ever to receive this honor.
His focus laid mainly on cash games but he did win three WSOP bracelets. In 2006 he won a bracelet through the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E World Championship and this earned him $1,784,640. He is now remembered in this event by an award in his name that is given to the winner. He became the manager of the card room at the Dunes Casino. His total tournament winnings exceeded $3,500,000.
Chip Reese left many friends and family devastated in December 2007 and there are different theories to what cause him to die. His death could have been caused by side effects of pneumonia but poker friends of his, Barry Greenstein and Doyle Brunson believe it could have been caused by a blood clot from a gastric bypass. Dubbed a poker legend he was survived by his ex-wife, a step daughter, a son and a daughter.