Thomas K. McEvoy, a professional poker player, an author, and also a member of the poker hall of fame, was born on the 14th of November 1944, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States of America.
In 1983, during the World Series of Poker Main Event, he emerged the winner, and this brought about his fame as it is what he is best known for.
Highlights of McEvoy’s Major Tournaments
Most of his major tournaments were at the World Series Poker (WSOP).
Below are some of his achievements:
- 1992 – First place in WSOP at Omaha Limit
- 1986 – First place in WSOP at Seven-Card Razz
- 1983 – Winner in WSOP at Limit Hold’em
- 1983 – First place in the WSOP Championship Event at NLHE
- 1983 – First place in the Irish Championship.
McEvoy Early Life and Career
McEvoy, who was born and brought up in Grand Rapids (the second-largest city in Michigan), is an accountant. He took up poker completely in 1978 after he lost his job. He learned how to play poker from his grandmother at the tender age of five and would always get into trouble for playing poker in grade school.
His first victory was at the WSOP in 1982, where he finished 6th place in the $1,000 Razz event. A year later, he emerged a winner for the first time at the World Series of Poker (WSOP) of the $1,000 Limit Hold’em event, where he defeated his Irish counterpart, Donnacha O’Dea. It was reported that he won the tournament in a heads-up match.
He also won the WSOP Main Event in 1983 and also was the first winner to earn himself the buy-in via a satellite tournament. He played another head-up match with Rod Peate, which was the longest heads-up battle to be recorded in the history of WSOP. The record, however, was broken by Chip Reese and Andy Bloch in 2006, during the $50,000 H.O.R.S E event.
After his two bracelet victory in 1983, he went on to win two extra WSOP bracelets. One was won at the Razz tournament in 1986, where he defeated Alma McClelland, and the second at the Limit Omaha tournament. He won the other in 1992, defeating the world champion of 1986 named Berry Johnston.
McEvoy, since his two consecutive victories at WSOP Main Event, was unable to continue with winning the championship. McEvoy emerged a winner again after so many years after at the WSOP in 2006, where he finished 37th position and earned $34,636.
McEvoy is aggressively against smoking, and this was very evident in 1998 when he organized a poker tournament where smoking was prohibited. His decision brought lots of reluctance from people but amazingly, the tournament was still able to attract a very high number of players.
Thus, he was able to confirm the possibility of organizing a non-smoking tournament amongst players. He became a champion also in 1998, where he won the annual Ventura County Poker Championship alongside his fellow accountant called Phil Palmquist. He finished in third place.
McEvoy, over the years, has authored and co-authored over dozens of books on poker, including his fellow players like T. J. Cloutier, Dag Pavlovic, etc. He serves as a columnist for a magazine named CardPlayer Magazine, and at PokerStars.com, he is a representative where he mostly plays using his own name.
On May 31st, 2009, Tom McEvoy won the WSOP first ever Champions Invitational, including nineteen (19) others who were also champions at the main event. He successfully defeated the 2002 world champion named Robert Varkonyi to win the tournament in a heads-up play.
The first prize he earned was a Classic 1970 Corvette plus the inaugural Binion Cup, presented to him by Jack Binion in memory and honor of his dear father, known as Benny Binion (founder of the World Series of Poker, and the Binion Horseshoe).
In 2010 alone, his total live tournament victories exceeded $2,900,000. The 38 cashes he earned at the WSOP account for $1,297,410.
Retirement and Later Life
Tom McEvoy is currently 72 years old, and he considers himself to be semi-retired. He resides in Las Vegas with his family. He is a father to three adorable children.