WSOP Veterans

We’ve seen multiple industry veterans take down some new hardware this year, and that trend shows no sign of slowing down any time soon. So, to celebrate the grinders who have been plugging away at this game for so long, let’s take a closer look at how each of them won their bracelet at the 2023 WSOP.

  • Ronnie Day
  • Nick Schulman
  • Kenneth O’Donnell
  • Isaac Haxton
  • Josh Arieh

Ronnie Day – Tournament of Champions

Ronnie Day Winner of Event 4

“The Year Of The Veterans” was kicked off by Ronnie Day winning the WSOP Tournament of Champions for a cool $200,000. Ronnie is the very definition of a tournament grinder, he’s been on the scene for years playing in low-mid stakes live tournaments across the country for years. He only won his entry into this prestigious tournament in the eleventh hour, taking down the $400 No Limit Hold’em Monster Stack circuit event to earn himself a WSOP circuit ring and a spot in this tournament.

Going into this event, Ronnie said that he would be treating it as practice for the main event, and given the result, he’ll be hoping that this is a good omen for things to come! He outlasted some of poker’s heavyweights including Scott Seiver, Daniel Zack, and Dan Smith to take home $200,000 and one of the most prestigious bracelets of the series.

Nick Schulman – $1500 Seven-Card Stud

Nick Shulman Event #9

He may not have reached 40 years old yet, but Nick Schulman is a veritable veteran of the poker-playing and commentating community. Many modern players will only know Schulman as the silky and knowledgeable voice behind the microphone, but on the felt he is, as Nick would put it, “one sick puppy.” He’s battled in some of the biggest mixed games in Bobby’s Room, played high stakes online for years, and has now added a 4th bracelet to his collection by winning the $1500 Seven-Card Stud event.

Winning this event marks the third different discipline in which Schulman has won a WSOP bracelet. While many specialize in a game for years to give themselves a chance of winning a major event, Nick is a rare example of a “master of all,” something he’s proved time and time again over the years. He had a tough ride at this final table, but his years of experience saw him overcome the likes of Shaun Deeb and John Monette to secure his bracelet and over $110,000 in winnings.

Kenneth O’Donnell – $600 No Limit Hold’em Deepstack

Kenneth O'Donnell Event #11

Many people think that these large tournaments are a young man’s game; they require great staying power and the ability to stay mentally sharp for hours on end. However, Kenneth O’Donnell proved everyone wrong, taking down the $600 No Limit Hold’em Deepstack event for just over $350,000! Kenneth outlasted over 6000 other competitors over two grueling days to win his first WSOP bracelet, nearly 15 years after his first Hendon Mob record where he won the $330 Mega Stack in Vegas for just over $12,000.

The gravity of the situation really hit home after he had time to let the reality of his achievement sink in. Kenneth said that he’s been playing poker for decades, and it’s nice to see perseverance rewarded on such a huge scale. When asked about his victory, he said “I’m very, very happy to have been the ‘Chosen One’ for the poker gods today. This feels really special. I just feel really blessed.”

Isaac Haxton – $25,000 High Roller (8-Handed)

Event 16 winner photo - Isaac Haxton

While he may be the youngest player on our list, there’s no doubt that Ike Haxton is a poker veteran, and he’s having a year to remember. A man who’s long held the title of “best player to never win a bracelet,” Haxton managed to finally throw that monkey off of his back by taking down the $25,000 High Roller event. Ike has been at the top of poker for as long as anyone can remember, bursting onto the scene while in college and continuously battling against the greats, soon becoming one himself. He’s had a string of major tournament successes over the years and has finally added some WSOP hardware to an already stacked CV.

Haxton overcame a stacked final table to claim his bracelet, beating out the likes of Joao Viera, Brian Rast, and Daniel Elias, before beating Ryan O’Donnell heads-up. What made the win even more special was that he survived the largest field for a $25,000 event in WSOP history, beating out 300 other entrants to claim a massive first-place prize of $1,698,215.

Josh Arieh – $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship

Josh Arieh

It’s hard to think of many players as dedicated to poker as Josh Arieh. A talented player in a variety of games, Hendon Mob cashes that date all the way back to the 1990s, and now five WSOP bracelets to his name, Josh Arieh is one of the most respected poker veterans on the scene. His proficiency in poker, and specifically Limit Hold’em can be traced back 24 years to his first WSOP bracelet, the $3000 Limit Hold’em event he won back in 1999. Nearly a quarter of a century later, he’s picked up his second bracelet in this discipline and his fifth overall by winning the $10,000 Limit Hold’em Championship for just over $316,000.

It took all of his years of experience to navigate his way through the 124-person field and to overcome a stacked final table, featuring Nick Schulman, Nick Pupillo, and former Main Event champ Joe McKeehen. Many people are talking up Josh’s chances of making the Poker Hall of Fame this year, and with such ridiculous staying power at the top of the game, we’re inclined to agree!


So far at the 2023 WSOP, the veterans have shown us that poker is not just a young man’s game. They’ve had tremendous success in the early stages of the World Series, and we could well see that continue in later events. It just goes to show that as long as you’ve got the heart and commitment to the game, anything is possible, no matter your age.

Jordan conroy

Jordan Conroy, a respected name in the online poker arena, has cultivated his authority through years of dedicated play and content creation. Since 2020, he has earned a stellar reputation for his in-depth analysis of poker theory and his ability to keep a finger on the pulse of the latest developments in the poker world. Jordan's dedication to staying at the forefront of poker knowledge allows him to consistently deliver top-quality content that resonates with both novice players and seasoned professionals. Beyond his poker expertise, he brings a diverse perspective, closely following other competitive domains like soccer, snooker, and Formula 1, enriching his insights and providing a comprehensive understanding of the gaming landscape.
WSOP Schedule and Banner WSOP Schedule and Banner

Our comprehensive guide compiles all the essential information about the 2024 World Series of Poker. Stay up to date with…

Read More

The WSOP schedule is highly anticipated each year, as it outlines the dates and events for the largest and most…

Read More