Phil Ivey In $5.1 Million Full Tilt Downswing

September 8th, 2014 | by Kaycee James
Phil Ivey on Full Tilt losing streak

The Phil Ivey Full Tilt losing streak continues. (Image:

Phil Ivey resumed a substantial losing streak at Full Tilt Poker in August, as he attempted to rebound from losses totaling $5.31 million at their worst. According to data available at, the persistent downswing began with the re-launch of Full Tilt Poker in 2012, when Ivey began playing under the screen name “Polarizing”.

While Ivey’s losses pale in comparison to those of Danish poker pro Gus Hansen, who managed to lose an astonishing $16.29 million at Full Tilt during the same stretch, they should be no less confounding for the celebrated poker savant who considers high stakes cash games his “bread and butter.” Before April 15th, 2011 (poker’s Black Friday), Phil was on top of the online poker world with $19,242,744 in winnings as a Team Full Tilt Pro.

Mixed Games; Mixed Results

Despite winning his tenth World Series of Poker gold bracelet in 8-Game Mix this summer (his fifth bracelet in WSOP mixed game events), nearly half of Ivey’s multimillion dollar losses on Full Tilt resulted from playing 8-Game, which features several Limit poker variants, but also includes No Limit Holdem. Losses in Draw Games and Pot Limit Omaha High also contributed to the sizeable downswing.

The reasons for the disparity between Ivey’s live and online performances may be unclear, but the inherent variance is perhaps why Big One for One Drop winner Daniel Colman recently described professional poker as an “insanely stressful” job.

A Familiar Frontrunner

Poker veteran Patrik Antonius of Finland holds onto the top spot at Full Tilt, after surpassing Ivey back in April. A former Team Full Tilt Pro himself, Antonius has played under the screen names “Luigi66369”, his real name, and now “FinddaGrind”. With total earnings of $18.1 million collectively, he is now ahead of Phil Ivey by $3.79 million and appears to have found the grind indeed.

Challenging Antonius and Ivey this year is Dan “jungleman12” Cates, who is third in overall winnings at Full Tilt with $10.26 million. Since 2012, Cates is second only to Antonius in profits and is actually the top earner for the current year with $2.85 million year to date. He reportedly lost $354.1K to Phil in a heads-up session on September 2nd however, although Ivey must book several more winning sessions to remain competitive online.

Still A Winner

Despite appearing mostly on the HighStakesDB list of losers since 2012, Phil “Polarizing” Ivey still boasts $14.3 million in profits on Full Tilt to date, and adds another $21.45 million in live poker tournament winnings, according to Hendon Mob.

As a 2009 WSOP November Niner, Ivey said in a recent interview with PokerListings:”I don’t like to lose, but poker…it humbles you, because you realize that no matter how good you are, you’re going to have losing days, you’re going to have losing weeks, and you’re even going to have some losing months…But you have to learn how to deal with losing in order to become a better winner.”


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.