Phil Gordon is an uncommon professional poker player in that he has the dubious distinction of having made it financially before he ever bet a dime on the felt. Born July 6th, 1970 in El Paso, Texas, Gordon always seemed to have a penchant for technology and his obvious talent would land him in the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) at the age of 15. By the age of 20, Phil Gordon had already earned a degree in Computer Science!
It didn’t take long for Gordon to put this degree to good use as he moved to Northern California to work for Lockheed Missiles and Space Company. After a stint there Gordon became the very first employee of NETSYS Technologies; he earned lots of stock options as a result of being their first employee too. When NETSYS Technologies was bought out by Cisco Systems for $95 million, Gordon instantly became a multi-millionaire and quit his computer programming job.
Since he was already sorted financially, Gordon decided to travel around the world – he hit 50 different countries and 5 continents by the time his trip around the globe was over with. One of the best stories from Phil’s 6 year journey was when he made his own raft in South America and used it to travel down the Amazon River. Another story saw Gordon in the middle of an Australian wet t-shirt contest where he was the judge.
Eventually, Gordon would long for his homeland again and returned to the United States with poker on his mind. Since he had played the game plenty during his childhood, Gordon didn’t take long to jump straight into the professional ranks: his first WSOP in 2001 saw Phil earn a 4th place finish in the Main Event and cash for $400,000! The 2002 WSOP was also very good to Gordon since he made two different final tables – one in Pot-Limit Hold’em and one in Omaha Eights-or-Better.
Another crowning achievement for Gordon’s playing career was winning the WPT Bay 101 Shooting Stars tournament. Due to his outstanding achievements at the poker table, Phil decided to start writing strategy books. His first effort was entitled Poker: The Real Deal and it only took a few months for the book to sell over 100,000 copies. After the release of his first book, Gordon put out another one called Gordon’s Little Green Book: Lessons and Teachings in No Limit Hold’em; this book was a more advanced look at strategy for Texas Hold’em.
Besides his playing career and published books, Phil Gordon is well known for his poker commentary since he was on Bravo’s Celebrity Poker Showdown for 7 seasons. He was also an announcer for the final table of the WSOP Main Event in both 2006 and 2007; this spurred ESPN to offer him the lead broadcaster job for the Pro-Am Poker Equalizer show that began in 07’.
Another notable thing about Phil Gordon is that he stands 6’9” which often makes him the tallest person at any poker event he attends. It also makes him stand out at Bridge events too; an avid player of the game, he has won two national Bridge competitions during his career. Gordon is a very active supporter of Cancer research and he has raised thousands of dollars for the cause. He currently resides in Las Vegas, Nevada with his wife and child.