December 6, 2021
Tournaments & Cash Games
Justin Bonomo’s chop-win in the $100K high roller at the Bellagio on Friday put him back on top of the all-time tournament money list with a jaw-dropping $57,047,262 in winnings.
The WPT Five Diamond High Roller event attracted 19 and paid three spots. After Dan Smith finished third for $304K, Bonomo and Jason Koon agreed to an ICM chop for $928,200 and $667,800, respectively. The scheduled pay jump was $500K.
With the win, Bonomo passed Bryn Kenney, who with total tournament cashes of $56,907,385, stood on top of the all-time tournament money list since 2019.
Bonomo, who at 36, still has four years before he can be considered for induction into the Poker Hall of Fame, has run very well at the tables over the past four months, with six final table appearances, including two wins, at various high-roller events.
On a ‘high’ roll
Since September, Justin Bonomo has banked more than $3.9 million in high-roller tournaments.
|Justin Bonomo High Roller Performances (Sept. 2021 – Dec. 2021)|
|Dec. 3, 2021||WPT Five Diamond $100K High Roller||1||928,200|
|Nov. 16, 2021||Aria $10K High Roller||2||94,600|
|Nov. 6, 2021||Aria $10K High Roller||1||171,100|
|Oct. 19, 2021||WSOP $50K High Roller 8-Handed||2||700,228|
|Sept. 27, 2021||$300K Super High Roller Bowl||2||1,890,000|
|Sept. 5, 2021||$25,000 + $500 WPT World Online Championship Super High Roller||3||155,695|
Bonomo by the numbers
Since 2018, when he won the WSOP’s $1 million Big One for One Drop for a cool $10 million payday, much of Bonomo’s success has come in small high-roller events against elite competition. That doesn’t mean he can’t — and hasn’t — cashed in larger events. The man who first made his name online as ZeeJustin is a three-time WSOP bracelet winner, a three-time WPT final tableist, and the winner of one WSOP-C ring.
Top 10 poker tournament money list
- Justin Bonomo: $57,047,264
- Bryn Kenny: $56,907,385
- Daniel Negreanu: $45,175,428
- Erik Seidel: $38,416,403
- David Peters: $38,279,171
- Dan Smith: $37,969,324
- Stephen Chidwick: $37,692,003
- Jason Koon: $34,038,628
- Cary Katz: $33,650,388
- Fedor Holz: $32,724,248
Bonomo vs. the wide, wide world of sports
With his return to the top of live tournament earnings list, we thought it only right to see how Bonomo’s success stacks up against the earnings of some the world’s top athletes in sports like tennis, golf, and MMA.
In the world of tennis, Bonomo’s $57 million in earnings would put him in fifth position on the ATP’s all-time money list, roughly $5 million behind England’s Andy Murray, and $14 million ahead of American great Pete Sampras. Novak Djokovic ($154.7 million), Roger Federer ($130.5 million), and Rafael Nadal ($124.9 million) hold the first three spots, respectively.
On the golf course, Tiger Wood leads the PGA in winnings with $120 million, followed by Phil Mickelson at $94.8 million, and Dustin Johnson at $72.6 million. While Bonomo isn’t close to golf’s very top earners, he does make it into the top 10, taking over eighth position from Justin Rose who has $55.9 million in tournament winnings.
When it comes to fisticuffs, Floyd Mayweather holds the title of the world’s richest boxer with a net worth estimated at more than $1 billion. Of that, he easily outclassed Bonomo by earning more than $500 million in just two fights — a 2015 throwdown with Manny Pacquiao that paid him $250 million, and a 2017 fight with Connor McGregor that netted him $300 million.
Bonomo fares much better against McGregor, whose net worth is around $200 million. Only $25.3 million of that money came directly from beating the tar out of people in the octagon, however, and McGregor’s fight earnings wouldn’t even crack the top 20 on the poker tourney money list.
Being a young, driven player will surely send Bonomo’s lifetime tournament winnings near and possibly beyond the highest earners in these sports. He’s been the game competitively for about 15 years and, if he continues his current pace for another 15, the $100 million mark is unquestionably within his reach.
And while father time is undefeated in physical sports, poker players don’t often worry about quitting the game due to physical injury or their bodies breaking down from years of abuse on the field, the course, or in the ring.
That said, poker is currently a young man’s game; out of the top-10 tournament money earners listed, only Daniel Negreanu, Erik Seidel, and Cary Katz are older than 40.
Bob Pajich is a poker news reporter, creative writer, and poker player who never met suited connectors he didn’t like.
Share this story