Published on September 23, 2003, 1:54 am EST

You may have seen him on ESPN's broadcast of the World Series of Poker, or at least heard about him. He's Phil Hellmuth, the cocky and arrogant poker player who backs up his talk with strong play. Owner of 9 WSOP gold bracelets; one of the top bread winners ever in professional poker; in 1989, was the youngest player to ever win the World Series of Poker at the age of 24.

Phil Hellmuth is certainly not the shy and timid type. If you have seen him play, you know that he aggravates his opponents by constantly chiding them during the games; frequently standing up from the table to contemplate his hand; high-fiving people watching the game when he wins a particularly large hand. If you have been watching the World Series of Poker this year on ESPN, then you know that Phil's abrasive style of play got him punched out after one player got particularly annoyed with Phil.

You can't argue with success though, and Phil's distracting style of play certainly benefits him, based on his success in the last 10 years. He certainly rattles his opponents, and more power to him if it helps him to win, as long as he stays within the rules. To be a good poker player, you need to know how to block out distractions; if you can't do this with Phil, he is going to beat you every time.


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