WSOP officials announced today that future winners of the $50,000 buy-in event will receive a trophy named after Chip Reese along with the top cash prize.
The $50,000 event was first added to the WSOP schedule in 2006 as a H.O.R.S.E. event. It was won by Reese, making him a three-time bracelet winner and securing his place in the WSOP history books.
"A true gentleman and the youngest person admitted to the Poker Hall of Fame, Chip Reese was recognized by his peers as the most successful player in the biggest mixed cash games of all time," said Jeffrey Pollack, WSOP commissioner.
"But he was also a great tournament player with three WSOP bracelets, including one for his historic victory in the inaugural $50,000 buy-in H.O.R.S.E. tournament in 2006."
Reese was found dead in his Las Vegas home on the morning of Dec. 4 at the age of 56. No official cause of death has been released.
Reese had been playing poker nearly his entire life. He learned to play poker as a child and used to play for baseball cards with Mike Sexton. He continued playing poker in college at Dartmouth, where they've named a cardroom after him.
After getting an economics degree, Reese was on his way to begin law school in Stanford in the early '70s when he made a stop in Las Vegas and hit it big at the poker tables.
It didn't take him long to move up in the stakes where he became friends with Doyle Brunson and started building his legendary status.
Reese preferred to stay out of the spotlight associated with tournament play. His realm was mainly the high-stakes cash games, but he did win WSOP bracelets in 1978 and 1982 before being inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 1991.
He had slowed down on tournament play for several years, but reentered that arena again in 2004 at the request of his children. In 2006 he sealed his spot in poker history when he won the inaugural $50k H.O.R.S.E. event.
"As a tribute to this great player who embodied the very best of our game, next year's $50,000 HORSE World Championship will be played in Chip's honor and memory," Pollack said. "And the winner will receive the 'David "Chip" Reese Award,' as well as a WSOP bracelet, to commemorate their achievement."