On Monday, the Jeopardy! legend took a small chunk of his $2,462,216 in winnings to enter his first World Series of Poker tournaments in Las Vegas, where he lives with his wife and daughter. He did…ok.
Holzhauer’s first event was a No-Limit Hold’em tournament with a $1,500 buy-in. He finished in 454th place. The top 281 contestants won a share of $2.5 million in prize money. Later in the day, Holzhauer entered a $1,000 tag team event with Mike Sexton, a Poker Hall of Famer.
Holzhauer was a semi-professional online poker player in the early 2000s before switching to sports betting — and, of course, practicing for Jeopardy! — full time.
In the wake of his loss to Emma Boettcher on an episode that aired June 3, Holzhauer has used his wealth to support charitable causes, donating $10,000 each to Project 150, an organization that assists homeless and housing insecure high schoolers, and Communities in Schools of Nevada, a dropout prevention program.
Holzhauer also made a $1,109.14 — his daughter’s birthday — donation to a pancreatic cancer walk in his hometown of Naperville, Illinois in Alex Trebek‘s name. The Jeopardy! host announced earlier this year that he had the disease, which is now “near remission.”
Holzhauer had pledged to donate half of his poker winnings to Project 150, but it seems like he’ll have to work on his game a bit if he wants to dominate as he did Jeopardy!