Watch ‘Jungleman’ Dan Cates Make History at the Poker Players Championship

Dan Cates Poker Players Championship
Rachel Kay Miller

“Jungleman” Dan Cates, one of pro poker’s most colorful and entertaining personalities, became the first back-to-back tournament winner at the $50,000 Poker Players Championship when he claimed victory and more than $1.4 million this summer in Las Vegas.

Cates, who also hosts the Winning the Game of Life podcast and heads up the Dan Cates Foundation, brings flair to the poker table by dressing up in costume. He won the 2021 event in Dragon Ball Z-inspired garb, and then successfully defended his title in 2022 dressed as Randy “Macho Man” Savage.

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You can see Cates in action tonight on CBS Sports Network as the 2022 $50,000 Poker Players Championship (PPC) airs in two hourlong installments.

Cates was in Cyprus competing in the Triton Super High Roller Series (a $200,000 buy-in!), where he donned the persona of a sea god from ancient mythology and answered our questions in character.

How has Cyprus been treating King Neptune?
Dan Cates: I am TRIDAN, son of Poseidon and Amphitrite, heir to the throne of the sea! Don’t let my atypical attire fool you…my return to the Earthdweller’s realm has cost me my usual attire, my trident and my magic conch. It was too late that I could wield my magic weapons’ might, when my servants returned my weapons to me in the $200k buy-in cash game. Behold their power! I had 4 8s against Aces full! And yes, watery domains (such as steams) are my specialty.

When you Tweeted that you’d “basically already won” the PPC before the final day, were you supremely confident or just having fun with your opponents?
The whole tournament didn’t give any mystery to who the INTERCONTINENTAL POKER PLAYERS CHAMPION was gonna be. I even brought a towel to the final table so all the doubters could wipe their tears. Just as the cream ALWAYS rises to the TOP, I was going all the way, baby! Oooo yeeahh!

What’s the longest continuous poker session you’d ever played (either online or at a table), and would you ever consider trying to beat the 124-hour record?
My longest session was 72 hours, but I had a one-hour nap. I might consider trying to beat the record but it’s not ideal.

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Have you already thought about your costume/character for your attempt at a PPC threepeat?
I’m thinking to go with what character the flow of energy brings out. Perhaps the readers will have some ideas?

2022 World Series of Poker: $50,000 Poker Players Championship, Thursday, September 22, beginning at 8/7c, CBS Sports Network