Isaac Haxton

Isaac Haxton: On Poker and Refusing PokerStars’ Olive Branch

American poker pro Isaac Haxton is best known for his vast accomplishments in high-stakes online cash poker games and high-roller live tournaments.

Born in New York City, the young-looking 32-year-old Haxton (who bears a slight resemblance to Harry Potter) was raised in Syracuse by his psychiatrist mother and English professor father. His father introduced Haxton to various games of skill when Haxton was a young child. In fact, Haxton was playing chess at four years of age and, by age ten, was an avid and competitive Magic: The Gathering.

Haxton attended Brown University and majored in computer science. However, poker was far more appealing, and Haxton—like many successful pros—swapped college for poker. At the age of 18, Haxton began to visit Verona, New York’s Turning Stone Casino. He started at $3/$6 limit Hold’Em before quickly increasing his stakes. At the same time, Haxton embraced online poker with his first $50 deposit on Ultimate Bet.

Isaac Haxton on the felt

In January, 2007—at his first major tournament, the PCA $8,000 WPT NLHE Championship Event in Melbourne, Australia—Haxton came in 2nd and won a hefty $861,789. Since then, Haxton has done incredibly well, amassing six-figure payouts around the world.

He scored his largest single cash—nearly $2.53 million—at the 2014 Aussie Millions Poker Championship $250,000 NLHE Challenge placing 2nd behind Phil Ivey.

Haxton earned another million-dollars-plus prize—$1.31 million (HK$ 10.2 million)—for his 5th-place finish at the Guangdong Asia Millions HK$ 1,000,000 NLHE Main Event in Macau.

2018 has been quite profitable for Haxton. He finished well within the top ten in the majority of every high roller and super high roller tournament in the European Poker Tour (EPT), Triton, Aria, US Poker Open, Asia Pacific Poker Tour (APPT) he entered. Most recently, at the 49th WSOP,  Isaac Haxton won a respectable $519,000 with his 4th-place finish in the $50,000 NLHE High Roller event.

Despite not winning a bracelet (yet), Isaac Haxton has an impressive 24 money finishes and has made five final tables at the WSOP. His highest finish at the Main Event thus far is 94th in 2007.

Haxton is quite fun to watch. Check out this incredible bluff versus Ryan Daut.

Haxton currently sits in 15th place on the All-Time Money List with total live tournament winnings slightly more than $19 million.

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Online success and sponsorships

Isaac Haxton is widely regarded as among the best online poker specialists. Playing under such names as Ike Haxton, luvtheWNBA, and philivey2694, Haxton has earned more than $2,000,000 in high-stakes cash games.

Isaac Haxton

PokerStars dispute

Once a member of Team PokerStars online and brand ambassador, Haxton quit in 2016, citing alleged unethical behavior by the online site.

He recently responded to PokerStars’ efforts to mend a rift with the poker community by changing its rewards program and other parts of the site to improve user experience. However, Haxton isn’t accepting PokerStars’ olive branch as he was among the victims defrauded by the online giant for millions of dollars.

Isaac Haxton is quite opinionated (justifiably) and certainly doesn’t mince words.

And then, in response to Alex Dreyfus, CEO of Global Poker League and Hendon Mob owner, Isaac Haxton fired with:

Haxton isn’t the only one dissatisfied with PokerStars. Dan “Jungleman” Cates hurled some harsh words against the site’s business practices, third-party live assistance software bots, and rake.

PartyPoker sponsorship

Isaac Haxton—along with Jason Koon—is the newest member of Team PartyPoker. Haxton’s role isn’t exactly clear; however, its vagueness serves a purpose. He hopes to help the site regain its former greatness while providing valuable input as PartyPoker and PokerStars move in different directions. Many argue that Haxton will, indeed, be a valuable addition to PartyPoker.

If you’d like to learn more about this highly adept and successful player, you can read Fading Hearts on the River: A Life in High Stakes Poker (2015) by Haxton’s father, Brooks. This book offers a unique parental perspective into a child’s passion. Haxton’s interview on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast is quite awesome. You can also follow Isaac Haxton on Twitter.

So, what are your thoughts on the incredibly talented Isaac Haxton and the whole PokerStars situation? Please chime in below.

Until next time.

WSOT Summer 2024

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About the Author
Natalie Faulk

Natalie Faulk

Natalie Faulk is a Las Vegas-based freelance writer/blogger and the author of several books. She is an avid low-stakes (for now) poker player and huge Vegas Golden Knights fan.

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