Riess the Beast – the New World Champion of Poker

Ryan Riess Image

The WSOP November Nine series has come to an end with an improbable (certainly deemed so by the bookmakers, who were mostly favoring JC Tran by a wide margin) win by none other than Ryan Riess or as his fans affectionately call him, “Riess The Beast”. His lion-like resilience, cold-blooded playing style and readiness to act when there was a sizable opportunity truly earn him the nickname, one that will most likely stick through the ages, much like “Texas Dolly”, one might dare say. The Michigan native’s victory was a whole lot less of an improbability once the game started: Ryan comfortably took the lead in the early stages and maintained it all throughout, only to concede it to Jay Farber after Day 1, which was on Monday, November 4. Well, it went way past November 4 when all was said and done, at about 2:30 in the morning Vegas time. Day 2, though, was finished much quicker, with Ryan Riess being crowned the 2013 world champion at a ceremony attended by all his fans who were there for him for the whole duration of the competition, including his family members, close friends and Michigan State University colleagues. Ryan cited Chris Moneymaker’s 2003 stunning win as a personal inspiration for him during all those years that built up to his current ace-player status. 14 years old at the time, he took Moneymaker’s shining example as a real opportunity builder, becoming a Kmart cashier turned into pro poker player. However, the Kmart job wasn’t his highest achievement before commencing a successful poker career – Riess is a graduate of MSU with a Bachelor’s Degree in Hospitality.