MEET THE LATEST WSOP CHAMPION – MATT MATROS
The 2012 World Series of Poker $1,500 buy-in Six-Handed No-Limit Hold’em champion is Matt Matros, from Brooklyn, NY.
Matros is 35-years-old. He was born in West Hampton, NY, which is located on Long Island.
Matros is married.
Matros graduated from Yale University with a degree in mathematics. He later received an M.F.A. from Sarah Lawrence University.
Matros is a true renaissance man. He is a writer, teacher, and poker player – with numerous interests and ambitions.
Matros wrote a revealing biography called The Making of a Poker Player (published in 2005), which chronicles his early years transitioning from student/employee into a full-time poker pro.
Matros has been working on a novel in recent years. It is not about poker. He says he hopes to finish the book soon.
Matros worked as a software engineer before deciding to pursue a poker career.
Matros was a dedicated poker player long before the poker boom. He final tabled the second year of the Tournament of Champions (2001). He later cashed in several other major tournaments, including the New England Poker Classic (NEPC), World Poker Tour (WPT), and the World Championship of Online Poker (WCOOP).
Matros has been playing poker seriously since 1999 and has relied on poker for the majority of his income since 2002.
Matros has accumulated nearly $3 million in overall career tournament winnings.
Matros has many close supporters who are well-known poker pros. The list includes Greg “Fossilman” Raymer, Andy
Bloch, Jerrod Ankenman, Bill Chen, Robert “Action Bob” Hwang, Spencer Sun, Matt Hawrilenko, Terrance Chan, and others.
Matros has regularly attended poker community events including BARGE (Las Vegas), FARGO (Foxwoods), and ATLARGE (Atlantic City). The annual gathering attracts a few hundred of poker’s brightest and most dedicated pros, semi-pros, and aspirants. The BARGE community includes notable poker players such as Andy Bloch, Greg Raymer, Terrance Chan, Bill Chen, Jerrod Ankenman, Steve Brecher, Gavin Smith, and several others.
Matros was a regular player in a private poker tournament played at the home of 2004 WSOP Champion Greg Raymer
when he lived in Connecticut. The tournament was known as the "Fossilman Invitational Heads-Up Poker Tournament (FIHUPT)." Matros boasted that he once finished second in Raymer’s tournament -- one of proudest accomplishments.
For this victory, Matros collected $454,835 for first place -- his biggest poker score ever.
According to official records, Matros now has 3 wins, 6 final table appearances, and 24 in-the-money finishes at the
WSOP. Matros currently has $1,350,031 in career WSOP winnings.
Matros is to be classified as a professional poker player (in WSOP records and statistics).
WINNER QUOTES (POST-TOURNAMENT INTERVIEW)
QUESTION: This is becoming a habit, Matt -- three straight years with a win. How does it feel?
MATROS: It doesn’t even occur to me that I might win a bracelet. Everyone hopes they do, but even winning two the last two years, you never expect to run that good again. Man, I just caught so many cards and came back from some a couple of big hands that I lost, too. I just can’t fathom how lucky I’ve been the last three years here at the Rio.
QUESTION: Maybe it hasn’t really sunk in yet because of the historic ramifications, but with three bracelets, you’re in some seriously elite company now – such as Chip Reese, Barry Greenstein, Sammy Farha, Dewey Tomko and others who each have three wins. How do you feel about that?
MATROS: I would have said it was impossible to win a third one, so I can’t imagine winning a fourth one, a fifth one. I mean, two years ago when I won the first one, I really felt the vindication of my career, the validation. I’ve played so many events so many deep runs that to have finally won one two years ago and then last year was the icing on the cake, I couldn’t believe I won another one. And this, I don’t even know what to think about this. It’s ridiculous. This is beyond…. I thought I was lucky last year. I felt kind of guilty about that. I don’t even know what to think this year. I have to be the luckiest person alive.
QUESTION: What’s your family’s reaction, especially your wife?
MATROS: My wife, Ivy, is not in the poker world. She’s a librarian in New York at the Whitney Museum. She is as stunned as I am when these things happen. Actually, she’s less stunned than I am. She really believes in my abilities and she knows that I’m really good at my job – and this is my job. She trusts that I’m going to come out here and make some money. I don’t. I just assume I’m going to go zero for 25 and lose $250,000 or something. But my wife thinks, ‘oh yeah, Matt’s going out to work and win some money because he’s really good.’ I wish she were here because I miss her when I come out for the summer. We live in New York but, she’s going to be less surprised than I am, but just as happy.
QUESTION: You’re also a writer. Last year when you were interviewed, you mentioned that you were working on a novel. How’s that going?
MATROS: Well, I’m still battling the revision. Last summer, I finished the first draft I got some feedback over the fall and did a bunch of -- I went through the revising -- edited a bunch of stuff and now I’m going back and trying to make it good and it turns out that’s the hardest thing of all -- making it a good work of fiction. Obviously, I don’t get any writing done when I’m out here. I’ve been working long days every day. But, I’m hoping when this is over I can go back and grind it down and actually have a draft that I’m ready to try to sell in a few months. But that may take longer now, but I’m trying not to worry how long it will take I’m just trying to get something that I like.