Poker Winning Hands

PODCAST: Poker Stories With Jack McClelland

After a brief stint as a professional bowler, Jack McClelland spent the rest of his career working in poker. He started out at the bottom cleaning ash trays and running chips before moving up the ladder to dealer, shift supervisor, and eventually tournament director.

McClelland spent more than 30 years as one of the most respected figures in the industry, running tournaments all over the world. The Ohio-native was in charge of the World Series of Poker for most of the 80’s and 90’s, and made Bellagio one of the flagship casinos of the World Poker Tour from 2002 until he retired in late 2013. McClelland was inducted to the Poker Hall of Fame in 2014 alongside Daniel Negreanu.

Highlights from this interview include starving on the PBA Tour, from Russia not with love, learning cards from Grandma, moving to Vegas for the weather, the big games at the Sahara, breaking in at the WSOP, dealing with Johnny Moss, Stu Ungar, and the mob, the trouble with Sam Grizzle, heads-up penalties with Men The Master, Mrs. McClelland the bracelet winner, the lake in the middle of The Strip, his poker Mount Rushmore, a summer job at the copper factory, and the $300-$600 stud pot with Sarge Ferris that ended his playing career.

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