Jennifer Tilly Wins Second Major Poker Tournament

Actress Jennifer Tilly, who took up the game only a year ago, has won her second major poker tournament. She wond the World Series of Poker in June.

Tilly Wins Second Major Poker Tournament

Actress Jennifer Tilly has won her second major poker tournament and confidence in her playing ability. “I felt like I was suffering from the ‘impostor syndrome,'” said Tilly, who jumped from the table after her win. “I had these niggling self- doubts. But now I know I can really play. These women were extremely tough pros with blood lust at the poker table.”

Tilly’s victory at the World Poker Tour Ladies Night III at the Bicycle Casino on Thursday makes her the first woman to win that title and the World Series’ Ladies World Poker Championship held in June. The win guaranteed her a spot in the $25,000 buy-in WPT Championship next April at Bellagio.

Tilly, who has been playing the game for a year, said she learned pointers from her boyfriend, poker player Phil “Unabomber” Laak.

While I still don’t understand why someone, let alone a card player, would adopt the name of a terrorist as nickname, he’s obviously some kind of teacher.

Related: Actress Jennifer Tilly Wins World Series of Poker

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James Joyner
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James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Michael says:

    He didn’t actually adopt the name. He was given the name by players who thought he looked like the artist’s rendition of the Unabomber. ANd frankly, he did.

  2. T. Jaxon says:

    Two points:

    Making something out of Tilly’s recent win at the “Ladies Night” tournament is a stretch. Instead of playing against a large field of 200+ players, the final table was hand-picked by the producers of the show. And yes there were many very good female opponents she had to work through but winning a one-table tournament can be as much about luck as it is about skill, on any given night.

    Second, Laak took to wearing the hood and shades while playing poker because he is an easily readable poker player – he was giving off tells that could be read a mile away. Very excitable fellow. I’ve played him numerous times at backgammon tournaments in the late 90’s/early 00’s (and he is an excellent backgammon player) and he never was outrageous in his fashion attire. You do what you have to do in poker to keep one step up on the competition…his choice of clothing is part of that.

  3. cirby says:

    Miss Tilly joins the ranks of women who play dumb characters very well, but who is not, by any reasonable definition, dumb.

    The great Judy Holliday used to completely slaughter some of Hollywood’s best card players…

  4. Yeah just search for Phil Laak in google images and you will see why people started calling him that. Not his fault. 🙂