Tom “durrrr” Dwan: WSOP Big One for One Drop Q&A

Tom Dwan
Tom Dwan at the $1 million Big One for One Drop.

Tom “durrrr” Dwan is one of the biggest names in poker and today he’s playing the biggest tournament in history, the $1 million buy-in Big One for One Drop.

This is the first WSOP event of 2012 for Dwan, who just flew to Las Vegas from Macau where he’s been playing the super high-stakes cash games, along with a few other players in the Big One field.

Dwan is a legend in the high-stakes cash-game world but he’s yet to snag a truly huge live tournament win. Dwan’s biggest live cash to date was just over $381k for a runner-up finish at the WSOP two years ago.

Suffice to say a deep run in this event would change things considerably.

We spoke to Dwan for a few quick minutes on a break from the Big One to talk about what a $1 million event means not only for the poker world, but for some of his Asian businessmen buddies from Macau. The Big One is finally here. Are you excited?

Tom Dwan: Well, I was really excited but I’ve lost most of my chips so I’m a little less excited. Hopefully I’ll get some of it back and get excited again.

PL: How big is it for poker that Guy was able to put this $1 million event together?

TD: I think it’s awesome. There’s clearly a market for it. Obviously you can’t run a million-dollar tournament every two months but we’re starting to see with the $100k and the $250k Super High Rollers happening more often that there is a market for it.

Tom Dwan
"If you go back just like five years the biggest tournament was $25k."

If you go back just like five years the biggest tournament was $25k. But these really big events are so much fun and they’re really interesting.

PL: It used to be that the mainstream was impressed when someone won a million playing poker. Do you think this million buy-in will get people’s attention, especially with the charity component?

TD: I don’t know. For me it’s more that I enjoy playing in this tournament and 47 other guys also enjoy it.

The idea of a $1 million buy-in tournament might look a little bad to some people if there wasn’t a charity part to it, though. Maybe it would seem inconsiderate or something.

But aside from looking good it’s obviously a great thing whenever you can generate that kind of money for charity.

PL: How does this event compare to some of the live high-stakes games you’ve been playing as far as excitement? You’re working with similar dollar amounts.

TD: Well, it’s definitely something new. I think I’d be enjoying it more if I had more chips.

PL: You’ve had a chance to play with so many of these guys, even some of the Asian businessmen we don’t know too well. How big is the money for some of these guys?

TD: Yeah I think I know forty-plus people in this field that I would call friends, or at least know amicably, so it’s pretty sick.

I mean, $18 million is a lot of money to anyone, even to Guy, but I think the majority of the people just want to win but not necessarily just because of the money.

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