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A Poker Life -- Shannon Shorr (Latest News About Casino, Poker, Baccarat in Philippines)

A Poker Life -- Shannon Shorr
Article ID 00042809
Author Kristy Arnett
Date JULY 27 2022
Twenty-four-year-old Shannon Shorr isn’t your average college student — or your average poker pro, for that matter. When he’s not sitting in class, he’s jet-setting across the country and putting up thousands of dollars to play for million-dollar top prizes. When he’s not in a poker tournament, he has his face buried in the latest business textbook, slaving away at his notes for class. While most students or professional poker players are concentrating on their respective focuses, Shorr is doing both, and doing it very successfully. Southern Beginnings Shorr was born on June 7, 1985, in Birmingham, Alabama, where he grew up with an older and a younger sister, each by two years. “We all grew up playing sports. Our parents have always been supportive of everything we did. I had a really good childhood.” An adventurous kid, Shorr played basketball, football, and baseball. While attending Shades Valley High School, he focused mostly on baseball, but never let athletics get in the way of his schooling. He held a 4.0 GPA nearly all the way through high school. “I was kind of a studying nerd,” Shorr laughs as he admits shyly. “My parents did a good job of not trying to force me to do well. They just reminded me of how important it is.” After graduation, Shorr headed straight to the University of Alabama. Having always been a great math student, he decided to go into engineering. Shorr took in campus life and loved sporting the crimson and white school colors at sporting events, especially football. Shorr didn’t have the immediate success that other young, baby-faced phenoms have had who say that they went from an initial deposit to hundreds of thousands. Shorr had a slow and somewhat financially draining introduction to Internet poker. “For the first eight or nine months I was losing player. I got down like $3,500, which was a lot to a student without a lot of money. I finally started turning it around playing PartyPoker sit-and-gos.” A competitive person by nature, Shorr knew that he could beat the game and began studying it with much more intensity. He also became friends with Jonathon Little, who would later become known for his talent not only in playing sit-and-gos, but also teaching sit-and-go strategy. Shorr said that Little’s advice helped him quickly turn his game around and got him going in the right direction. Poker Success and Bellagio Once he began winning, Shorr spent more and more time grinding sit-and-gos, slowing moving up the ranks. By 2005, he was playing $500 buy-in tournaments. Though underage to play poker in the U.S., Shorr was itching for his first crack at a major live tournament. He began trying to qualify for overseas events where the legal age is 18. In December 2005, Shorr won his way into the Aussie Millions event, which was to take place in January. The only problem was that it conflicted with the start of the spring semester of his junior year. He consulted with his parents about taking a semester off, and, as always, the supportive duo encouraged their son to do what he thought was best. After arriving in Australia a few days early, Shorr competed in a few preliminary events without any success. A little rattled, he entered the main event with a chip on his shoulder. Fortunately, he was able to pull through it and build confidence along the way. He made the final table and wound up finishing in fourth place for $200,000. The huge boost in bankroll allowed for more travel, and since he had the semester off anyway, he decided to take advantage of the extra free time. He made a few more online and live cashes, and he traveled to Las Vegas for the summer. He cashed in a couple of World Series of Poker events, but really hit his stride at Bellagio. In event No. 5, a $1,000 buy-in no-limit hold’em event in the Bellagio Cup II tournament series, Shorr defeated 435 players to take down the top prize of almost $127,000. The next two consecutive days, he competed and cashed in two more $1,000 buy-in prelims. Carrying the momentum straight into the $10,000 buy-in main event, Shorr decimated the 324 players to win the more than $960,000 top prize. The summer’s wins and cashes were enough to boost Shorr into Card Player Player of the Year contention, so he decided to take the fall semester off of school to compete for the award. He ended the year with a few more major tournament cashes, four of which came from preliminary events at Bellagio, but it wasn’t enough to clinch the title. Instead, he came in a respectful fourth place, and the overall honors went to Michael Mizrachi. Having become a millionaire during his time off from school, Shorr decided to take even more time off. With such quick and monstrous success in 2006, Shorr wanted even more for 2007. However, as is the case with tournament poker, there can be long droughts between large cashes, and Shorr felt the emotional and financial toll downswings can take on a professional player. “It was rough seeing your bank account just deplete. It makes you try to force it, and I started getting kind of angry at poker.” His somewhat meager results for most of the year were made up of a few four- and five-figure cashes, but Shorr pulled through with three decent scores at the Bellagio Five-Diamond World Poker Classic , including a $102,000 win for placing third in a $5,000 prelim event. Back to School After a particularly hard 2007 and a yearning to finish his degree at an all-time high, Shorr decided to go back to school. In the spring of 2008, he returned to work on his engineering degree, but after six weeks of classes, he decided that the major wasn’t for him. He dropped the classes with plans to return in the fall as business major, but in the meantime, he continued to play poker. Again, he traveled to Las Vegas for the summer. This time, he had much more success at the WSOP . He made four total cashes, and nearly won a bracelet in a $2,000 no-limit hold’em event. Shorr placed second for $350,000. After the Series , he returned to Bellagio to do more damage. At the Bellagio Cup IV , he won a prelim event and finished third in another for a total of $372,000. When the summer ended, it was time for Shorr to go back to school, and he has been attending ever since. “It’s mostly for self-satisfaction. I wanted to finish, and I guess it doesn’t hurt to have a back-up plan.” Balancing school and poker has been a challenge, but he takes each day at one at a time. It also helps that he’s always been a successful online tournament player, as well. Since returning to school, most of his cashes have taken place on the virtual felts, but in April of this year, he made the second-biggest cash of his career. Shorr finished fifth in the $25,000 World Poker Tour Championship event at, where else, Bellagio. He was awarded $408,000. “Even though it was a fifth-place finish, it’s probably the most memorable of my career. To be able to go deep in that tournament with such a tough field is something I’ll never forget.” The Road Truly Less Traveled For now, Shorr is finishing up his senior year. Although he’s won more than $3.6 million in tournament poker, he’s never made a big purchase with his money other than a 2004 Chevy Tahoe. When he’s on campus, he says he hardly ever talks about poker, especially not how much money he’s made. “I don’t like to talk about it because most of my friends don’t really understand. I haven’t made any big purchases because I’m just not an extravagant guy. I guess I’m just a boring, southern guy,” he says in his Alabama accent. Shorr graduates in the spring of 2010, and he looks forward to returning to poker full time. He credits much of his accomplishments to his the support of his family. “I’m blessed to have such an accepting family about poker, especially in Alabama. They are really conservative there. They’ve been great, and they are always cheering for me when I’m deep in tournaments. That’s really cool.” Shorr’s decision to go back to school is one that not many young poker millionaires make, and living life as a professional poker player is also not a venture everyone can take part in successfully. For Shorr, it’s a mixture of talent and good old hard work that has allowed him to do so well. His easy-going personality, humble nature, and infectious Southern kindness make it hard for anyone not to root for him.

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