Bryn Kenney, nicknamed ‘BKD’, is an American poker player from Long Island, New York. Kenney has a reputation for being one of poker’s toughest players and he is now the highest earning professional in the game.
During his childhood, Kenney showed a keen interest in board games like Risk and Stratego, and he regularly played card games with his Grandma. As a teenager, he was an avid player of Magic: The Gathering – a digital card collecting game – but it was poker that really captured Kenney’s interest.
He went to great lengths to play poker online in his teens, despite being under the legal gambling age in America. When he was in school, Kenney started to play poker and by the time he was 17, he used his mother’s name to create a poker account so he could enter online tournaments. He soon realized that he could make good money through online poker and set up his own, legal, poker account when he was 18, which he still uses today.
Despite parental pressure to study at college, poker was Kenney’s true calling. It was a fruitful financial path for him and he dropped out of college after only a few weeks. After turning his attention to online poker, Kenney quickly established a reputation as a ‘High Roller’ among his online competitors.
Early success in online poker helped Kenney raise enough money to buy-in to larger poker events. He eventually won his first cash-in at the 2007 East Coast Poker Championships in Verona, placing second and winning nearly $35,000. His first six figure win came just three years later, when he came eighth in the 2010 World Series of Poker tournament, taking home nearly $150,000 from the No-Limit Hold’em Six-Handed event.
Kenney is a person known for producing polarizing opinions, as other players to either loath or love him. The extent of his outspoken personality was highlighted in June last year when he challenged pop sensation Justin Bieber to an MMA fight on social media, offering the Canadian $1 million to face him in the ring.
However, Kenney really allows his success at the poker table to do the talking for him and this has led to sensational achievements, huge earnings and an unfathomable consistency over a 13-year poker career.
Major Tournament Wins
Kenney won his first, and only, WSOP gold bracelet in 2014 after winning the mixed game event of the 2014 World Series of Poker Championship in Las Vegas. Throughout his career, Kenney has reached the final table of the World Series of Poker tournament nine times.
In 2019, Kenney won just over $20 million for finishing second in the Triton Poker Super High Roller Series charity event in London. It was the highest ever poker buy-in in history (at around $1.3 million). China’s Aaron Zang, who placed first, actually received a smaller winning fund than Kenney, as both players agreed to settle the prize money between themselves.
Due to his large winnings from this event, Kenney’s total carer earnings surpassed $50 million and contributed to his quick rise to the top of the Hendon Mob All Time Money List, overtaking compatriot and 2018 leader Justin Bonomo.
Throughout 2019, Kenney also won over $2 million placing second at the Jeju Triton Poker Super High Roller Series, and first at the Montenegro Triton event.
Kenney has reached the final table in 11 major tournaments in his career and has 181 total cashes. The 33-year-old has placed first in 21 events, the most recent of which came in December 2019 when Kenney won the No Limit Hold Em – High Roller event in Hollywood.
Total Poker Winnings
To date, Bryn Kenney tops both the Hendon Mob All Time Money List and the USA All Time Money List. He has won $56,403,502 from live poker events since 2007.