United Passenger David Dao Won Thousands on Pro Poker Tour

david dao

Getty Reverend Jesse Jackson (C) stages a protest against United Airlines at O'Hare International Airport on April 12, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The protest was in response to airport police officers physically removing passenger Dr. David Dao from his seat and dragging him off the airplane, after he was requested to give up his seat for United Airline crew members on a flight from Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky Sunday night. / AFP PHOTO / Joshua LOTT (Photo credit should read JOSHUA LOTT/AFP via Getty Images)

The passenger who was forcibly removed from a United Airlines flight embarked on a successful professional poker career over 10 years ago.

David Dao of Elizabethtown, Kentucky joined the professional poker circuit in July 2006 one year after his medical license was suspended in Kentucky for illegally prescribing painkillers.

Dao was physically removed from a United flight by security officials and his mouth was bloodied as a result.

Attorney Stephen L. Golan of Golan Christie Taglia released a statement on behalf of the Dao family. It said that his client remained hospitalized for his injuries in Chicago as of April 11. The family is “appreciative” of the support they have received since the incident occurred April 9.

In his poker career, Dao has amassed total winnings of $234,664, his player profile showed. He’s primarily played no-limit Texas Hold-em during that span.

In his first-ever appearance on the pro circuit, Dao took 15th place at an event at Horseshoe Southern Indiana Hotel and Casino. The buy-in was $200 and he walked away with $326 in winnings.

The most Dao ever won in a World Series of Poker tournament was $117,744 when he placed second during an event at Harrah’s Tunica in Mississippi in 2009.

The buy-in at the tournament was $5,150 and it was won by Kai Landry.

On the final hand of the tournament, Dao was called all-in by Landry. Dao had a royal flush draw on the board and needed a diamond to win the hand. But the final card was a Six of Spades, and Landry went home as the victor.

Dao also played in the 39th Annual World Series of Poker Main Event Championship in 2008 at Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino. The tournament had a $10,000 buy-in, and Dao took 453rd place. He won his second-highest prize to date in the tournament, traveling back to Kentucky with $27,020.

In Event 59 at the 2012 World Series of Poker, Dao took 410th place and won $1,830. The buy-in for the tournament was $1,000 and it was won by Dominik Nitsche, who pocketed $654,797.

In the almost 11 years he’s been playing poker professionally, Dao has participated in 17 tournaments.

The most recent one he took part in was in January at the Horseshoe Tunica Hotel and Casino. The tournament had a $365 buy-in and Dao took 11th place, taking home $1,191 in winnings.

Prior to that, Dao played in the 47th Annual World Series of Poker In June 2016 at Rio Casino. With a buy-in of $888, Dao took 30th place and won $19,947.

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