Poker Veteran Sam Grizzle Dies

By Ben Hamill - October 23 2020

Poker Veteran Sam Grizzle Dies

Professional player Sam Grizzle, widely known as one of the funniest guys in the Poker world, has died. Grizzle was 67 years old. After suffering a serious stroke and brain aneurysm on Sunday, October 18, Grizzle reportedly fell into a coma. By Tuesday, his condition had worsened so severely that he was declared brain dead by his doctor. Grizzle’s family made the call to remove him from life support that same day.

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Fisticuffs With Phil Hellmuth

Poker fans first got to know the colourful and unique Sam Grizzle during Poker’s early days on modern television.  During the televised Main Event of the 2003 World Series of Poker, his famous rivalry with Phil Hellmuth was once again on full humorous and entertaining display.

This was a rivalry that had started out a couple of years before that particular event, American sportswriter and WSOP telecaster Norman Chad explained at the time. Grizzle and Hellmuth had apparently gotten into a fight over Hellmuth’s failure to save Grizzle a seat while he left the table to grab a bite to eat. He returned around 90 minutes later, only to discover that Hellmuth had stopped saving his seat because so much time had passed – to which he responded by challenging Hellmuth to a movie-style fist fight. Grizzle, though much smaller in stature than Hellmuth, apparently decked his opponent without much ado.

Hellmuth would later describe his fisticuffs with Grizzle as a comedic event he would never forget and the first and possibly also the only fist fight he would ever have in the Poker world.

A Career Long In The Making

But while Sam Grizzle was best-remembered and certainly loved and appreciated for his dry sense of humour and his famous deadpan cadence and wit at the felt, he was also an accomplished Poker player with an impressive portfolio of results.

In the pro-game already since the late 1980s, Grizzle had managed to amass lifetime cashes of more than US$1.3 million. Quite incredible is that he managed to amass the money that he did without ever running into even a single six-figure win – a great indication of the longevity and determination of Sam Grizzle.

His biggest cash would however come only months before his death. Sam “texasmolly” Grizzle finished third in Event #10 $600 No-Limit Hold’em MonsterStack. His winnings for that particular placing came to $77,725. Also, this was one of a total of seven cashed he had managed to book throughout the series.

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