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Poker News

Bobby “The Wizard” Hoff Passes Away Aged 73

Written By: Maya Michaels | August 29, 2013 | Posted In Poker News

It is with great sadness that we bring you news of the passing of a true poker legend Bobby Hoff who has lost his life aged 73.

Hoff who was known as “The Wizard” because he could make mountains of chips disappear, was born in Texas in 1939 and he shot to fame in the 1979 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event where he finished runner-up to Hal Fowler after nearly being eliminated on Day 1. At the close of the first day Hoff was left with just 1,730 chips, but he somehow battled back to reach the final table, though he was still considered to be the short stack at the time.

The heads-up battle with Fowler lasted around 10 hours and at the time it was consider a real “David versus Goliath” clash because Fowler was an amateur and Hoff a seasoned pro. The final hand saw Hoff’s pocket aces lose to the 7 6 hand of Fowler’s, thanks to a board of J 5 3 4 10 which gave Fowler a straight to Hoff’s one pair.

Tributes to Hoff have been pouring in on Twitter accounts around the world with Mike Sexton from the World Poker Tour tweeting, “RIP Bobby Hoff = poker legend”. Erik Seidel wrote, “So sad to hear about Bobby Hoff. He was a true NL artist + always such a pleasure to see at + away from the tables. #RIPwizard”.

Whilst never actually winning a bracelet at the WSOP Hoff did manage to cash 11 times during his career, cashes that resulted in winnings of $301,583. The cash in the Main Event in 1979 was his first and biggest, and his last came in 2002 when he finished 14th in Event 17 which was the $3,000 Pot Limit Hold’em event. Bobby Hoff was truly great player and one that will be sadly missed by many.

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