Celebrities with gambling problems. How addiction playing for big stakes nearly cost some stars their fame and fortune and how they managed to turn things around.
There are a number of celebrities in the world who have had gambling issues in their life. It’s not just something that can impact on regular people. In fact, due to the higher profile and larger sums of money involved it can actually be a much bigger problem for celebrities. Particularly susceptible to the problem are sports stars. The reason behind this is that they are looking for something to replicate, or if they’re recently retired, replace the rush of performing in front of thousands of people. A win when gambling actually provides the same rush of hormones to the brain as performing in front of people. This is why it impacts so many celebrities.
Take a look through our list of famous people who have moved further into the public eye as a result of their gambling problems.
It’s not just infidelity that the Tiger had a problem with. Tiger Woods actually managed to get himself banned from playing at the MGM Grand in Vegas. Such was the depth of his gambling problem. Even after his divorce settlement Tiger still has plenty of money behind him, but his stakes of $25,000 a time eventually led to him being on the road to more struggles.
As a man who is not known for his ability to control his vices, it’s a good thing that he eventually got banned from playing at the MGM Grand. Perhaps this was the wake up call that he needed to get him back onto the straight and narrow. Especially as his total losses came to almost $60 million over a 7 year period.
Dana White is a bit of an anomaly in the world of gambling problems. The amount that he plays it’s evidently a compulsion that he struggles to walk away from. However, Dana White is actually a talented gambler. While he obviously loses on occasion, it’s generally accepted that he wins more often than he loses. He’s even been known to walk away from the Blackjack table with winnings of up to $7 million in one night. Part of this is due to his stake being set at around $50,000 per hand!
Not only this but he has also been banned from a number of different casinos. This isn’t because he is racking up losses and not paying his tab, but it’s because he makes too much money when playing. Dana White is so good that casinos don’t let him in because they know he will eat into their profits. This is certainly not the norm when it comes to gambling problems, but it goes without saying that if you’re gambling enough to be banned from casinos, then you certainly have a problem.
Affleck is possibly one of the most misunderstood men in all of Hollywood. As his showing as Batman proved, when Affleck is passionate about a role he’s as good an actor as anyone else in the world. It’s his acting skills that he tries to bring with him when he makes his move to the Poker table. Just like his acting career though, he has mixed reviews when it comes to playing the game.
Ben actually managed to make a loss of $400,000 in a single hand when playing Poker. While he has had some huge wins as well, he regularly admitted that he would get drunk and then gamble at the card tables. It got to be such a problem that Affleck checked himself into rehab for his gambling issues. It’s not just that he bet a lot of money and often lost that was such an issue for Affleck, he got so obsessed that he even learned how to count cards. While this isn’t illegal in terms of the law, it did get him barred from one casino when he was caught. He still plays the odd hand, but Affleck isn’t anywhere near the gambling monster that he was at his peak.
MJ is arguably the greatest basketball player of all time. Few others are able to stand shoulder to shoulder with him and it makes him one of the most legendary sportsmen ever. However, despite how good he was on the court, he’s not quite as talented when it comes to gambling.
There are a lot of rumours about Jordan and his gambling impacting his basketball career, but we’ll just stick to the facts that we know. Firstly, back in the early 90s Jordan actually managed to lose over $160,000 gambling in Atlantic City. That’s a lot of money now, but back in the early 1990s, it was even more incredible. Things only got worse as Jordan got older. He’s known for gambling when playing golf, often betting $250,000 per hole. Jordan actually managed to lose almost $1.5 million when playing golf.
While he has never been to rehab and it never caused the issues in his personal life to the level of Tiger Woods, it’s evident that Michael Jordan has a problem. Let’s just hope his money doesn’t run out before he gets the help he needs.