Name: Aaron Kanter, The Big Killer
Location: Elk Grove, CA
Online Screen Names: Gotcha55 (UltimateBet), lost_cause (Bodog), 011180 (PokerStars), get_that (Full Tilt Poker), GOTCHA55 (Absolute Poker)
Aaron Kanter is one of the more prolific poker players, both online and offline, to grace the table in previous years. His biggest achievement to date is coming fourth in the World Series of Poker Main Event in 2005 after eliminating several big names, including Phil Ivey and Greg Raymer, along the way. He received the nickname of “The Giant Killer” as a result of his exploits as well as $2 million in prize money as a result of his seat at the table in the final and his fourth place achievement.
Kanter is a college graduate who spends his working life as a mortgage broker, a profession that he is good at but one that he uses to supplement his second day job as a professional poker player. Kanter first discovered poker online during his college days and was soon coasting from tournament to tournament making a name for himself. He found that playing poker came naturally, which may come as no surprise to those that know many of his family members are gifted mathematicians and scientists. Growing up in Lodi, California surrounded by the air of maths and science that encompassed his family, Kanter decided to put his gift to better use!
Kanter is a great reader of the game and this has stood him in good stead throughout his career. He has a gift that allows him to accurately read his opponents in person and predict the odds both on and offline. However, the fact that he achieved his seat in the WSOP Main Event via one of the online WSOP satellite tournaments has given him a bad reputation amongst his peers that he has thus far been unable to shake. He is considered lucky by many of the top poker players, who are just waiting for his downfall, because he often starts with the worst hand with the River bailing him out.
Before his 2005 fourth place finish, Kanter had previously walked away with prize money from ten major tournaments. He actually finished in 48th place in the WPT PokerStars Caribbean Poker Adventure, which is definitely a great achievement as it is one of the biggest poker tournaments around. His prize money was $17,787 for that placing.
His father inadvertently revealed Kanter’s secret during the course of an interview some time ago. Mitch Kanter stated that: His philosophy is that if the pot is huge, he feels that he can’t afford to not be involved. This may not be a wise strategy, and it probably contributes to his bad reputation, but it seems to work for him.