Phil Laak Biography
Career Winnings: $1,273,190
2007 Winnings: $158,391
Bluff/ESPN Ranking: 305th
Cardplayer Ranking: None
Phil Laak was born on September 8, 1972 in Dublin, Ireland, but grew up in Massachusetts. He is known as “The Unabomber” for his hooded sweatshirt and sunglasses which make him look like the police sketch of Ted Kacynzski, the anarchist who sent mail-bombs. Poker pro Gus Hansen gave the sweatshirt to Phil Laak. Phil attended the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and has a degree in mechanical engineering.
In 2007, Phil Laak had two strong finishes at the World Series of Poker and a few other small wins. Otherwise, 2007 has been a fairly tame year for Phil Laak in tournament play.
In 1999, Phil Laak began his poker career, but he didn’t become well-known until he began playing tournaments more frequently in 2003. Much of his success has been on the World Poker Tour. Phil finished sixth in the WPT Legends of Poker event in 2003 and won the WPT Celebrity Invitational in 2004. Phil has made a few more WPT final tables as well. His most notable World Series of Poker finish came in 2005 when he lost to Johnny Chan in heads-up play at the $2500 Pot Limit Holdem event.
Phil Laak is probably more famous for his crazy table stunts than for his poker play. With the TV cameras on, Phil has been known to pull the string on his sweatshirt as tight as possible so no one can see his face. Phil gets his exercise when he wins big, as he’ll do pushups and dances when he wins. He has also kneeled beside the dealer when he was all-in so he would be the first person to see the cards as they came out. Phil’s table manners have made him a character that most people either love or hate.
Phil Laak’s girlfriend is actress Jennifer Tilly, who has been more of a poker player ever since she won a WSOP Ladies Night event.