Jerry Yang - 2007 WSOP Main Event Champion

Jerry Yang started with nothing. He will never forget where he came from and is never takes his poker success – or how far he has come – for granted.

Tough and Challenging Beginnings for Jerry Yang

Jerry Yang was born with nothing. He began his life in Laos as an ethnic Hmong but moved to Thailand in the 1970s following the political unrest in the country and the ultimate takeover of the communists. They lived for four years in a refugee camp, where 2 of his siblings died. In 1979 the family moved to America where Yang lives today with his wife and six children.

Yang fought hard to give himself a better life and earned a Masters degree in health psychology. He has worked as a social worker and therapist but stopped working after he won the World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event in 2007. He converted $225 into over $8.2 million. He made the $225 after winning a satellite at the Pechanga Resort and Casino in Temecula. It wasn’t even a close call for the 16 hours he played; he had all the players fighting for their lives pretty much from beginning to end. In 2007 he got the WSOP bracelet.

Because of what he has been through, Jerry Yang is a poker player with more than just a heart. He cares and puts his money where his mouth is. He will never forget the day his father was told the family could come to America. For him, winning means he can use his money for the greater good as well as himself. He wants to give something back and thus committed 10% of his winnings to 3 different charities.

Jerry Yang’s Poker Career

Jerry began his poker playing in 2005 and, at the time, could not have been considered more than just an amateur. But he caught on quick and by the WSOP Yang had received four cashes in local events. Jerry is known for his poker playing strategy. He likes to study his opponents in the hope of beating them at the tournaments. He tries to figure out any weakness and then zoom in on it.

How Jerry Has Matured In His Game

Jerry wasn’t always like this though. When he played at Full Tilt Poker.com, Jerry was a bit of a wild card. But it didn’t take long for him to get smart and gain control. He quickly nailed 7 out of 8 of his opponents thereafter. It was probably his psychology and social work background that helped him not only focus on his own weaknesses at the table and get a hold over them, but those of his opponents too. Anyone who is a half-decent poker player will understand that the game is so much more than just the cards – strategy, focus and understanding of what is going on around you, is a huge part too.