Johnny Chan born in Guangzhou (Canton), China in 1957, now living in Las Vegas, Nevada is a professional poker player.
Chan attributes some of his early success to the fact that many players had not previously played against Asian players. He shot to fame in the late 1980s, winning the championship event of the World Series of Poker (WSOP) in two consecutive years (1987 and 1988). A videotape of the 1988 WSOP final heads up match is featured in the movie Rounders, in which Johnny Chan makes a cameo appearance. He almost won a third consecutive title, but finished in 2nd place in 1989 to Phil Hellmuth. He is the last player to win back-to-back WSOP Main Events, a feat many prognosticators think he could hold forever given the increasingly larger fields. Jerry Buss, an avid poker player and owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, promised Chan an NBA championship ring if he could win three in a row.
Chan is known for keeping a "lucky" orange in front of him on the table, and after the second consecutive WSOP title other players began bringing fruit to the table in hopes of increasing their luck. Chan says he only had an orange with him because of the pleasant scent, as smoking, which was allowed in many tournaments then, bothered him. Chan was once a smoker, but now he neither smokes nor drinks alcohol.
In 2005, Chan became the first player to win ten World Series of Poker titles, defeating Phil Laak in a Texas hold 'em event. He is currently tied with Doyle Brunson for second place with 10 World Series of Poker bracelets, behind Phil Hellmuth (11). He was inducted into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2002.
In 2008, Chan cashed for the first time in the main event since 1992, earning $32,166 for his 329th place finish.
In 2010 Chan cashed in the main event taking 156th place for $57,102.
Chan competed in the $400,000 Poker Superstars Invitational Tournament in February 2005. He came back from only having $20,000 chips out of $3,200,000 in play to finish in second place to Gus Hansen. Chan later competed in Poker Superstars II during the summer of 2005. He defeated 22 of the best players to make it to the finals. Then he defeated Todd Brunson in the finals after three matches to win the $400,000 first prize. Chan appeared in Poker Superstars III where he made it as far as the semi finals but was defeated by Todd Brunson after three matches.
One of Chan's earliest victories in poker was in Bob Stupak's 1981 American Cup poker tournament. Johnny Chan made it to the final table, and defeated all 9 other players in less than an hour. After this feat, Stupak gave Chan the nickname, The Orient Express.
Chan has yet to make a final table on the World Poker Tour (WPT), despite playing in numerous events.
Chan also featured in the 2004 and 2005 World Series of Poker Tournament of Champions events and the National Heads-Up Poker Championship in the same years.
As of 2009, his total live tournament winnings exceed $8,067,792. His 42 WSOP cashes account for $4,241,448 of those winnings.