Antonio Esfandiari – Making Magic Occur on the Tables


Antonio “The Magician” Esfandiari is without doubt one of the most acquainted faces of the poker scene. A magician turned poker professional has a powerful resume, having received hundreds of thousands enjoying tournaments within the US and throughout the globe.

However Antonio didn’t turn into well-known solely as a consequence of his plain poker abilities. A real entertainer at coronary heart, he’s all the time been a notable presence on the tables. This made him in style with the followers and fellow execs alike, opening doorways for a lot of alternatives over the course of his profession.

His earlier career has positively helped Esfandiari really feel comfy round playing cards and poker chips, and he’ll typically pull a correct magic trick on the tables.

That is the Antonio Esfandiari poker and life story, from his early days to this very day. When you occur to be a fan of “The Magician” or would merely wish to know extra about one of the outstanding figures in poker, carry on studying.

Poker Profession Highlights

  • Knowledgeable magician turned poker professional
  • Winner of the 2012 Massive One for One Drop
  • Three World Collection of Poker Bracelets
  • Dwell match earnings of $27.8 million

Antonio Esfandiari Early Life

Antonio Esfandiari was born in Teheran, Iran, in 1978. His mother and father truly named him Amir, and he solely modified it to Antonio later in his life.

Esfandiari’s father was a profitable businessman in Iran, however the warfare created havoc within the nation, driving the foreign money worth to the bottom. His household misplaced a fortune within the course of, and so they have been struggling.

In 1988, when Amir was simply 9 years previous, his household moved from Iran to the US, making a brand new house for themselves in San Jose, California.

That is the place he grew up, and in 1997, he graduated from Del Mar Excessive Faculty.

After highschool commencement, Esfandiari didn’t attempt to pursue additional training. As an alternative, he set off to attempt to construct his life his method. He grew to become impartial at a really younger age, and it was clear to everybody round him that whether or not he makes it in life or not, he’d do it on his personal phrases.

He began working at a restaurant, determining what his true ardour was and what he actually wished to do along with his life. It was throughout that point that he noticed certainly one of his coworkers carry out magic methods. Esfandiari was captivated by these abilities and set on a path of changing into an expert magician.

19 12 months previous on the time, he’d spend numerous hours day by day studying and working towards, decided to grasp all of the secrets and techniques of the commerce. It was round this time that he modified his title to Antonio as nicely, primarily as a result of it was good for enterprise. Antonio the Magician had a greater sound to it.

The pure expertise, mixed with the exhausting work, helped Esfandiari turn into fairly an excellent performer. After some time, he was in a position to earn $300 – $400 an hour performing magic methods, however “The Magician” was simply at the beginning of his extraordinary life path.

Antonio Esfandiari Poker Profession

The Antonio Esfandiari poker journey began virtually accidentally. He by no means made a aware resolution to play poker for a dwelling. It was a mixture of issues that led him to the inexperienced felt, and it was his success on the tables that precipitated him to hold round.

Antonio acquired his first style of poker when he was invited to a sport after performing certainly one of his magic exhibits. Like many who’d go on to make profitable careers within the sport, Esfandiari was immediately hooked. All of it got here naturally to him.

It is value noting that neither of his profession decisions, magic nor poker, was well-received by his relations. However Antonio was decided to succeed regardless of all adversities.

Climbing the Ranks

Realizing he was naturally gifted for poker, Esfandiari was more and more falling in love with the sport. After all, there was additionally the truth that he might make considerably more cash enjoying playing cards than he might presumably earn performing methods.

In 2002, the Antonio Esfandiari poker journey began for actual. He started enjoying in tournaments in California and Las Vegas.

Esfandiari didn’t have to attend for too lengthy for his massive breakthrough to return alongside. In 2004, he managed to take down the celebrated WPT L.A. Poker Basic, pocketing simply shy of $1.4 million. If he had any doubts about enjoying poker earlier than, they have been all gone now.

Just some months later, in Could of 2004, Esfandiari received his first World Collection of Poker bracelet, incomes one other $185,000 within the course of.

Along with his newly discovered bankroll and confidence, Antonio was able to take poker full time. Within the years to observe, he traveled the US and the world, enjoying in lots of poker tournaments and slowly however certainly rising the Antonio Esfandiari web value.

Over time, Antonio has established himself as one of many prime gamers round, mixing issues up with one of the best of one of the best, each in tournaments and in money video games.

Then got here 2012, maybe a very powerful 12 months in “The Magician’s” life.

The $1,000,000 Massive One for One Drop occasion was set to happen throughout that 12 months’s WSOP, and Antonio determined to take part. It was a steep buy-in for certain, however Esfandiari was assured of his sport.

Because it turned out, it was one of the best resolution he might have made, as he ended up successful the entire thing and pocketing $18.3 million. He was up towards the UK professional Sam Trickett within the last heads-up skirmish.

The win additionally introduced him one other WSOP bracelet. Later that 12 months, in Europe, he managed to assert one other one, albeit in a a lot smaller occasion. So, as of proper now, Esfandiari’s bracelet complete is three.

Antonio Esfandiari poker

The one different seven-figure money of Antonio’s poker profession got here in 2013 when he completed 4th within the $111,111 One Drop Excessive Curler, good for $1.4 million and alter. However “The Magician” has a powerful run of six-figure cashes through the years.

All these mixed convey his complete dwell match winnings to $27.8 million. That is a powerful quantity for certain and adequate to place Esfandiari within the prime 20 of the All-Time Cash Checklist.

Antonio Esfandiari Spouse, Non-public Life, and TV Appearances

Though he’s no stranger to lengthy poker classes and a few loopy events, Esfandiari identifies himself as a household man, before everything.

He’s married to Ama Bounahra, a daughter of a fellow professional, Badih “Bob” Bounahra. In 2015, the couple had a son.

In a few of his interviews, Antonio has emphasised that he is very family-oriented and really near everybody in his household. So, it comes as no shock that he devoted his win within the Massive One for One Drop to his father, who was proper there subsequent to him, celebrating the massive second.

Esfandiari’s father additionally typically accompanies him to tournaments, and he is been identified to make an look on TV units. Though he was initially towards the concept of Antonio enjoying Texas Maintain’em professionally, he got here round to turn into certainly one of his largest supporters.

A considerably lesser-known truth is that Antonio additionally has a brother, Pasha. His brother additionally performs poker, however he’s not almost as severe concerning the sport as Antonio.

After all, it’s inconceivable to speak concerning the Antonio Esfandiari poker or personal life with out mentioning Phil “Unabomber” Laak. Laak and Esfandiari have been finest mates for a few years, however with a really wholesome and entertaining rivalry on the tables.

Antonio was very younger when he met Phil, and he stated that Laak, already an skilled gambler at the moment, taught him the significance of bankroll administration and never enjoying within the video games that he can’t afford.

Esfandiari was nonetheless a magician when he met Laak. Actually, Phil was current at certainly one of his exhibits, and, true to his character, he spent your complete night watching Antonio’s fingers and making an attempt to determine the methods. This caught Esfandiari’s consideration, they began chatting after the present, and the remainder is historical past.

Antonio Esfandiari on TV

The 2004 win in L.A. Poker Basic opened many doorways for Antonio. He obtained invites for poker exhibits like Excessive Stakes Poker and the Nationwide Heads-Up Championship, and he says these occasions had a big impact on his profession.

Esfandiari has additionally had a little bit of an performing profession, though nothing corresponding to his poker success. He appeared in a number of poker and playing motion pictures, together with Runner Runner, The Grand, Fortunate You, and seven Days to Vegas. He additionally performed in Freelancers, The Bayton Outlaws, and Cat Run 2.

In 2008, Antonio and Laak acquired their very own present on the MOJO HD community, referred to as “I Guess You.” It was a playing reality-type present, which noticed two mates touring the States playing on every thing and something that crossed their path.

The present lasted for 2 seasons, and the third one was already filmed and able to go, however the community went down earlier than it might occur.

In “I Guess You,” “The Magician” and “The Unabomber” did not need to act or faux an excessive amount of. They already had the type of dynamic that was good for a present of this kind. If something, the very fact they have been cameras round impressed them to provide you with crazier, extra daring, and extra embarrassing challenges.

Antonio Esfandiari Internet Value

In the mean time of scripting this, “The Magician’s” dwell match winnings stand at near $28 million, which means that the Antonio Esfandiari web value must be round $20,000,000 no less than. After all, it’s inconceivable to say how a lot cash Antonio has paid in buy-ins through the years, as monitoring websites solely observe these occasions through which he made it into the cash.

Apart from his poker accomplishments, numerous TV appearances have most likely helped increase the Antonio Esfandiari web value through the years. He’s fairly a well-liked participant, and that alone is value some cash.

Antonio Esfandiari Net Worth

Like the remainder of the highest poker gamers, Antonio has additionally been a daily in lots of high-stakes money video games. We do not have entry to any precise data for these, however contemplating his poker abilities, he is most likely achieved alright.

So, what’s the precise Antonio Esfandiari web value? A superb guess might be someplace within the $20 to $30 million area, which is kind of a neat trick if you happen to ask me.

What’s Antonio Esfandiari Been as much as Currently?

The Antonio Esfandiari poker profession has seemingly slowed down a bit. Lately, he hasn’t performed in lots of tournaments. Actually, Hendon Mob solely has one money in 2019 beneath his title, coming from a reasonably deep run in that 12 months’s WSOP Important Occasion.

Nonetheless, this doesn’t imply that Antonio has determined to take away himself from the poker world altogether. Maybe he’s simply grown slightly bored with big-field tournaments.

Esfandiari has appeared on among the new Poker After Darkish Episodes produced by PokerGO, and he is additionally been the primary participant to tackle Phil Hellmuth within the Excessive Stakes Duel. Antonio misplaced the primary match for $50,000 after which misplaced the rematch for $100,000.

“The Magician” took one last swing at “The Poker Brat” in a $200,000 heads-up skirmish, however Hellmuth managed to return out on prime as soon as once more. Antonio was achieved, and Phil determined to money out $400,000 and transfer on to Season 2.

The Season 2 of Excessive Stakes Duel is presently underway. Phil is now dealing with Negreanu and has managed to grab a 2-0 lead in that match as nicely.

As for Antonio Esfandiari, he is positively not going wherever. With the world of dwell poker opening, he would possibly get the itch to play once more, and one thing tells me we’ll be seeing some extra of “The Magician” within the months to return!

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