About David Chiu
|Current Residence||Roland Heights Calif.|
It was in 1999 at the Orleans Casino in Las Vegas that David Chiu won the first Tournament of Champions, a victory which assured his place among the world's top players and sent him away in a new Lincoln Town Car with a $214,542 cash prize. He has since won three WSOP bracelets, two state championships, and millions of dollars.
David is famous for his ability to read other players. When asked about what constitutes that ability, he revealed: "Concentration and it's a gift that God gave me. I pay attention to people's reactions, to the card they look at, or the way they put their chips in the pot. Sort of like Sherlock Holmes figured out murder mysteries, I use any and all the information that can give me a clue about what my opponents have. A lot of it is deductive reasoning. But I'm not 100 percent right all the time. If I was, I'd be a billionaire by now."
David's talent for concentration in part stems from a physiological mishap. He says: "When I was a child in China, I swam a lot. The water got inside my ears, damaging my eardrums. I lost about 35 percent of my hearing, so I've had to pay close attention to how people act to understand what they are saying. Also, I was a poker dealer at the Gilpin Hotel in Black Hawk, and I would see how people reacted to their hands, the way they looked at their cards. A lot of people squeeze their cards when they really like their hand. I paid attention. I tried to turn my hearing weakness into a strength."
David's parents, who spent their entire lives in China, would never have approved of his career. They have passed away, but when asked what their reaction to his status as a poker professional would be were they here to see it, he says, "They would spank me."
David has a natural passion for poker, though not all of his games are equally earnest. He admits, "I do play for fun once in a while. When I'm playing for $30,000 to $50,000 a night, I am very serious. If I am betting $1,000 or $2,000, then I'm playing for fun. If the hand is for $100 or $200, I might not even look at my cards."
David has met some illustrious opponents at the green felt table, including Larry Flynt, Ben Affleck, Jerry Buss, and Celine Dion's manager-husband, Rene Angelil. Of his games with Rene, he says: "There I was betting more than $2,000 a hand. And I don't want to say how he did, but let's just say he lost less and less."
- Former restaurant owner
- Poker dealer
- Holds four WSOP gold bracelets