The Godfather of Poker, Doyle Brunson, will undergo major surgery in the coming weeks after doctors discovered a melanoma growing on his head.
The melanoma is Brunson’s third and, despite informing the community in a typically humorous way, there was an undeniable hint of fear apparent in his recent tweet.
“@TexDolly – Simple or not, this will be my 12th major operation. Gonna play poker now because I always heard u get lucky right before u die. #justsaying.”
Of course, battling against the odds is something Brunson has become a master at both on and off the felt over the last fifty years. Aside from competing in the biggest cash games in the world for more years than most modern players have been alive, Brunson has undergone a number of surgeries over the last few years.
On top of having two melanomas operated on, Brunson was forced to have his gallbladder removed in 2014. After being rushed to hospital to have a blockage relieved, the American pro eventually had the gallbladder taken out for his own safety.
However, despite his advancing years and declining health, Brunson has managed to maintain an active poker schedule. Although he finally called time on his WSOP and tournament exploits, Brunson still antes up in the high limit poker rooms of Las Vegas on a regular basis.
As well as maintaining his competitive streak, Brunson has continued to take life as it comes and maintain a positive mindset. Not even the prospect of another operation at the age of 81 is enough to dampen his spirits.
“@TexDolly – Got my 3rd melanoma confirmed today. Early stages, should be simple operation. Fortunately, it’s on my head and everybody knows I’m hard-headed.”
As expected, Brunson’s tweets attracted slew of well wishes and everyone in the community is now hoping he can come through the surgery back to full health and just as sharp as ever.
Doyle Brunson is arguably the most influential man in poker. On top of winning ten WSOP bracelets and more than $6 million in tournament winnings, Brunson literally wrote the book on poker.
Super System is regarded as a defining piece of poker literature and is singlehandedly responsible for a generation of aggressive grinders.
In recent years Brunson has moved away from tournament poker and focused more on his first passion: cash games. For fifty years he’s managed to keep up with the toughest players in the world and, despite younger players coming and going, he’s remained one of the biggest winners of all-time.
Of course, the exact amount Brunson has won in cash games is unknown but conservative estimates put his overall haul at more than $20 million.