WSOP Poker Legends, Bobby Baldwin

Bobby Baldwin took the poker fraternity by storm in the 1970’s, capturing four WSOP bracelets in only three years of competition and he was reputed to be the finest No Limit Holdem player of his generation.

Baldwin clearly had enormous talent and a stunning professional poker career awaited him, but he did the unthinkable, according to his poker contemporaries, and opted for a casino management position instead.

What makes Baldwin a legend of the WSOP was his young age at the time of his Main Event win in 1978 – he became the youngest player ever, in the history of the WSOP, to win the Championship event. He was twenty-seven. This record was surpassed by Stu Ungar in 1980 and Phil Hellmuth in 1989.

Baldwin still occasionally makes it to the felt tables for the big cash games of the major tournaments and although he is sometimes a bit rusty, he is notorious for his fearsome play and the uncanny knack of putting a player on a hand and making the right decision. He cashed in 6 more times at the World Series of Poker between 1986 and 1995.

Bobby the Casino Exec

Baldwin stunned his poker buddies by accepting a job with Steve Wynn at the Golden Nugget Casino and by 1984 he had risen to the position of President and CEO of the Nugget. His burgeoning career did not end there however and he was tasked with the design, development and operation of the Mirage, Treasure Island and the Bellagio, a job which he held until 2005.

By this time he had been promoted to the lofty heights of CEO of Mirage Resorts Inc and part of his job description was to oversee some of the hottest properties on the Las Vegas Strip including the New York- New York, Monte Carlo, Circus Circus, Slots-A-Fun and the Boardwalk Hotel and Casino as well as other properties in Reno and Mississippi. He was appointed to the MGM Board of Directors and still serves on the board to this day.

Bobby’s ‘Bangles’

  1. 1977 – $5000 Seven Card Stud – $44 000
  2. 1977 – $10 000 Deuce to Seven Draw – $80 000
  3. 1978 – $10 000 No Limit Holdem World Championship – $210 000
  4. 1979 – $ 10 000 Deuce to Seven Draw – $90 000