Also known as The Professor, Howard Lederer’s biography doesn’t include tales of extreme poverty and life threatening close-calls. Born into an intellectual family, the young Howard took to chess like a thoroughbred to racing.
As soon as he finished high-school, he moved to New York. He attended Columbia University there (yours truly has also spent some time there), and prowled all the local chess-clubs for action.
It was in one of these chess clubs that he discovered poker and got hooked on it forever.
He would play nights on end, and he would lose most of the time, but back then, he just didn’t care. He feared no one, and he dived into the action-filled night with a thirst for action that could seemingly never be quenched.
Soon, though, his brain trained on the strategic subtleties of chess told him he needed to change something and make the move to the next level somehow. He took a "step back” (on his website, he makes it clear the teachings of Zen Buddhism had a great positive influence on him), he got more sleep and soon, results began to show.
At about that time, he played at the Mayfair club in NY, where he was lucky enough to run into players like Dan Harrington, Eric Seidel and Steve Zolotow, who had a definite positive influence on his development as a poker player.
One of Howard Lederer’s sisters is none other than Annie Duke (his other sister is writer Katy Lederer) whom he coached in poker during the late 80s. The discussions that were meant to better his sister’s play had an enormous positive impact on his own as well.
In 1993, Howard moved to Las Vegas, his sister following him soon. In 1994 they set a record, as they became the first ever brother-sister duo to make a WSOP final table. Annie Duke eventually got so good at the game that she outperformed her "Professor” several times in WSOP events, knocking him out on more than one occasions.
What should you look for in a good rakeback deal? Well, first of all whether your sign up bonus is subtracted from your rakeback or not. Look for the rake contribution method the poker room uses then. The rake rebate percentage is obviously also an important factor in determining just how much rake back you’ll earn at the end of the day. Also take a look at the promotions your rakeback site offers: freerolls, live event satellites, etc.
Even though nowadays Howard Lederer is known mostly as a tournament player, up until 2002, he mainly focused on cash-games. He got his first major break in the Hall Of Fame Poker Classic, in 1994, where he won a title which he successfully defended in 1995. The WSOP ice wouldn’t break for him for 5 more years though.
His first WSOP bracelet came in the $5,000 FL Omaha Hi-Lo event, in 2000, followed by another one, in 2001, in the $5,000 Deuce to Seven event.
Other than the two bracelets, his WSOP achievements include 34 money finishes and a quite exceptional 5th place in the 1987 main event.
In November 2002, Lederer won his first WPT title, followed up closely by a second one in March, the following year. Soon after, He won three Bellagio titles, in the 5-Star World Poker Classic.
When Full Tilt Poker was launched in 2004, they took Lederer aboard as a member of their design team.
Once you sign up to a rakeback deal, will you earn rakeback forever? Well maybe not forever cause you might not live that long, but you’ll certainly get rake back for as long as you play at that poker room. A rakeback account won’t ever be turned into a regular rakeback-less poker account. The same goes for poker prop accounts.
Other interesting facts about Howard Lederer: in his career he won a total of about $3,400,000.
Due to his mild nature, he seldom got into verbal tussles with opponents during his career. One such friction he had with Daniel Negreanu, who criticized Howard’s sister in an inappropriate manner once. He later apologized for it.
Another such incident involved Tony G (who else). I’m not sure whether there were any apologies in that case from either side concerned.