Joe “The Kid” Cada is a professional poker player from the United States. At the age of 21, he won the 2009 World Series of Poker (WSOP) Main Event and received over $8.5 million in prize money. Prior to this, the youngest player ever to win a WSOP Main Event was Peter Eastgate, who was almost a year older when he had his record breaking victory.
In the time period 2009 – 2014, Joe Cad has reached the money seven times in WSOP, including five final tables. He captured his second WSOP bracelet in a $10,000 No Limit Texas Hold’em six handed during the 2014 WSOP and was awarded with $670,041 in prize money.
As of August 2014, Joe Cada’s winnings from live poker tournaments exceed $10.2 millions.
Joe Cada is also a highly accomplished online poker player, known under the alias jcada99 at PokerStars and Full Tilt Poker. When he won his first WSOP bracelet, he had already been a successful professional poker player online for several years.
- Joseph “Joe” Cada was born on November 18, 1987.
- Joe Cada’s mother, Anne Cada, is a blackjack dealer at the MotorCity Casino in Detroit, Michigan, USA. His father, Jerry Cada, worked in the automobile industry until the late-2000’s recession. Both parents are card enthusiasts, but they initially disliked Joe Cada’s decision to become a professional poker player.
- Joe Cada has an older brother named Jerome.
- Joe Cada lives in Shelby Charter Township, Michigan.
- Joe Cada plays indoor soccer.
- In 2011, Cada’s Poker & Sports Grill opened in Sterling Heights, Michigan.
The young Joe Cada
Joe Cada started playing online poker when he was 16 years old. He shared two accounts with his older brother Jerome.
Michigan borders Canada, so the young Joe Cada could fairly easily travel abroad to play live poker in a casino in Windsor, Ontario where the age requirement was just 19 years (as opposed to 21 years in the United States). Eventually, he earned enough money to afford playing in poker events in Costa Rica and the Bahamas.
Joe Cada and the 2009 World Series of Poker
Even though online poker was generally going well for Joe Cada in 2008 – 2009, he experienced a $150,000 downswing that made it necessary for him to seek out a backer to be able to buy in to the events the wanted to play at the 2009 WSOP. Professional poker financiers Cliff Josephy and Eric Haber agreed to pay half of Cadas buy-ins in exchange for 50% of any winnings.
The 2009 WSOP was a great success for Joe Cada, to put it mildly. He started out with two in the money finishes in fairly low buy-in events. First, he placed 64th in a $2,500 No Limit Hold’em and won $6,681. Then, he placed 17th in a $1,500 No Limit Hold’em and was rewarded with another $21,533.
This turned out to be a great warm-up for the WSOP Main Event – the $10,000 World Championship No Limit Hold’em. After Day 1C (one of the four start days for the Main Event), Joe Cada was already the chip leader. He leveraged his chips well during the following days of play, and got all the way to the final table. He was now a November Nine.
Joe Cada entered the final table with the fifth largest stack. In the audience, roughly a hundred of Cada’s friends had gathered to cheer on him. Dozens of his most ardent fans wore special T-shirts in maize and blue (Michigan Wolverines team colors) with the words “PokerStars Michigan Joe Cada ‘ The Kid’” emblazoned across the front. PokerStars had also supplied them with baseball caps that said “The Kid” on the back.
At final table hand #122, he suffered a great loss and his stack now contained just enough for four big blinds. Out of all the chips at the table, a mere 1.2% now belonged to Cada. It looked very much like he would be the next player to leave the final. But Cada experienced two great moments that helped saving him. Two times, a slightly desperate Cada went all-in pre-flop with a small pocket pair and was dominated by a higher pocket pair. On both occasions, Cada got a three of a kind on the flop and went on to win the pot.
Instead of running out of chips, Cada started accumulating them. Eventually, there was only two players left in the 2009 WSOP Main Event: Joe Cada and Darvin Moon. As heads-up commenced, Cada had 135 million in chips against Moon’s 58 million. Cada didn’t manage to hang on to his lead throughout heads-up, but after losing the lead he climbed back again to slightly over 120 million.
During the very last hand of heads-up play, Cada got all-in pre-flop with nine of clubs + nine of diamonds against Moon’s queen of diamonds + jack of diamonds. The board ran eight of clubs – two of clubs – seven of spades – king of hearts – seven of clubs.
Joe Cada was awarded with the WSOP bracelet and $8,547,044 in price money. The victory occurred slightly more than a week before Joe Cada was turning 22 years old. This meant that Cada was now the youngest WSOP Main Event Champion ever, breaking Peter Eastgate’s old record by 340 days.