Greg Raymer – 2004 WSOP Main Event Winner

Greg ‘Fossilman’ Raymer shot to fame when he won the 2004 World Series of Poker and it’s $5 million first prize.

He adopted the ‘Fossilman’ nickname due to the fossils he uses for card protectors while sitting at the poker table. He actually sold similar fossils to pad his bankroll in the early stages of his poker career, and of course he plays with the table nickname ‘Fossilman’ online.

Easily identified at the poker table by his trademark sunglasses, Raymer’s holographic lizard eyes began as a joke during a big hand in the 2002 World Series of Poker. But it seemed have a desirable effect on his opponent so from then on, he’s worn the glasses in all the major poker tournaments he’s played.

Greg Raymer graduated from the University of Minnesota Law School in 1992 and practiced as an attorney for more than a decade, also utilizing his chemistry degree in the field of drug and biotechnology patents.

He lives in the USA with his wife and their daughter Sophie and prior to winning the WSOP frequented the Foxwoods Casino poker room in Connecticut.

He won his entry to the 2004 World Series of Poker via a $160 PokerStars double shootout satellite, making him the second WSOP winner in a row that qualified online. Unlike his predecessor, Chris Moneymaker, however, Raymer had played in live poker tournaments before.

Raymer first finished in the money of a World Series of Poker event during 2001 in the $1,500 Omaha hi-lo split 8 or better event won by Chris “Jesus” Ferguson. The next year, after finishing finished 80th of 631, he could be seen in the background as Robert Varkonyi celebrated winning the 2002 main event.

The Fossilman has had continued success since joing the poker tournament circuit full time. He earned some well-deserved respect from his poker peers in 2005 when he finished 25th out of 5,619 in the WSOP main event that Joe Hachem eventually went on to win. He was unlucky not to go further, when his KK was outdrawn by Aaron Kanter’s QJ of hearts running flush.

Raymer doesn’t seem to play many live poker tournaments lately, perhaps due his pending lawsuit against the World Poker Tour. Raymer – along with Andy Bloch, Annie Duke, Phil Gordon, Howard Lederer, Joe Hachem and Chris Ferguson – are accusing the WPT of using the pros’ names and images to sell products without consent or compensation.

The lawsuit triggered a heated online debate between Raymer and fellow poker pro Daniel Negreanu, who had criticized the seven players on his personal blog. Raymer fired back, calling Negreanu “a tool” in the online chat at PokerStars. After a series of fiery exchanges, the two called a truce and apologized for their comments about one another.

We’ve met Mr Raymer, and he seems like a nice guy who can speak intelligently on just about any topic. Although we don’t agree with his penchant for wearing socks with his sandles… We hope theyr’e comfy Fossilman, because it looks ridiculous!

Greg Raymer’s winning WSOP hand

8s 8d

Both players moved all in when they completed a full house on the flop. With 42522 on the board David Williams was happy with A4 giving him a full house 2’s over 4’s, but Fossilman turned over pocket 8’s to give him a full house – 2’s over 8’s

Greg Raymer’s Poker Career Highlights

  • 2004 WSOP $10,000 Main Event winner – $5,000,000
  • 2005 WSOP $10,000 Main Event – 25th – $304,680
  • 2005 WSOP Event 2 $1500 NL Holdem – 86th – $3,975
  • 2005 WSOP Event 22 $1500 NL Holdem – 6th – $119,450
  • 2005 British Poker Open – 3rd – £20,000
  • 2006 PokerStars 1st Sunday Million – 2nd – $180,000
  • 2006 WSOP Event 38 $5000 NL 2-7 Draw Lowball – 5th – $93,124
  • 2006 WSOP Event 2 $1500 NL Holdem – 63rd – $7,578

Greg Raymer Quotes

“Normally, it would be difficult to play your best for a solid week. However, for some unknown reason, I was very calm and very focused all week long, and made very few plays that I thought were mistakes at the time the decision was made. I wish I knew why I kept my mental processes so even, so I could ensure to repeat it every tournament.”

“Basically, I don’t like Mike, and don’t yet have any evidence that my opinion is likely to change in the future.”– Talking about Mike ‘The Mouth’ Matusow