About Alex Borteh

Alex Borteh
Alex Borteh

Alexander Borteh has his own deck of cards - literally. They're not the typical poker playing cards, though, but Magic: The Gathering.

Borteh began playing Magic when he was a teen and eventually ended up on the pro circuit. In 2001, he came in second in the Magic World Championships, losing to a player from the Netherlands. His second-place finish did bring him $23,000 in cash, and his mono-blue deck of creatures and whatnot was immortalized as a special tournament deck put out by Magic.

So how does a Magic player become a poker player? According to Borteh, it was his fellow gamer friends that led him to poker and his eventual pro poker career.

"They were Magic pros, and they started talking about how they were playing poker and winning a lot of money on these online sites," Borteh told PokerListings.com, "and I was just like, ‘What, poker? You can't win money at poker.'"

When he went back to Ohio State University to continue working on his philosophy degree, he started playing poker as well. He started reading books on poker and practicing, and before long, he was making money playing the game.

He took the time to finish his philosophy degree, which he chose because when he's alone he enjoys "thinking about the meaning of things and trying to figure it all out," and then he began playing poker professionally.

Rather than going the route of No-Limit Texas Hold'em like the majority of poker players these days, Borteh actually considers himself a Limit Hold'em specialist.

He said Limit Hold'em requires different strategies than No-Limit games and is often not given the same level of respect in some poker circles. Yet, in his view, Limit Hold'em is a more skillful game.

So, Borteh has focused mainly on Limit cash games in his online poker career and considers himself "very, very good at Limit poker."

In 2007, he proved he was right by winning the World Series of Poker $3,000 Limit Hold'em event for a gold bracelet and more than $200,000 in cash.

He'd been to the WSOP the two years before that as well, coming in third in the $1,500 Limit Hold'em Shootout in 2005, and cashing twice in 2006, making his bracelet win his fourth cash so far.

The WSOP win was also his first-ever live tournament win and proof that Alex Borteh has more than enough magic in him to mesmerize his opponents in poker.

Tournament Placing

Place Winnings Tournament
1 $225,483.00 2007 WSOP - Event 34, Limit Hold'em
70 $6,966.00 2007 WSOP - Event 10, No-Limit Hold'em
72 $2,128.00 2006 WSOP - Event 21, No-Limit Hold'em- Short handed 6/table
3 $46,885.00 2005 WSOP - Event 15, $1,500 Limit Hold'em Shootout
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