May 14, 2023

4 Famous People Who Lost It All in Gambling

Emily Thompson
Written byEmily ThompsonWriter
Researched byPriya PatelResearcher

Gambling can be fun, especially when you keep winning. But when losses start coming, gambling can reduce even the wealthiest people to nothing. If you still doubt it, this article will introduce you to some famous personalities who suffered the most painful gambling losses in history. You will be surprised!

4 Famous People Who Lost It All in Gambling

#4: David Bentley

David Bentley is a famous ex-England football player representing top teams like Arsenal, Tottenham, and Blackburn. While his playing skills are unquestionable, Bentley struggled with gambling addiction. He told Evening Standard in 2008 that gambling had cost him thousands of pounds. Bentley confessed to placing 100 wagers daily on greyhounds, horses, and online poker. Thankfully, Bentley sought help after his girlfriend warned him of losing his footballing career. 

#3: Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan, or simply MJ, is a famous professional basketball player from the United States. Regarded as the best in the game, Jordan solely owns the Charlotte Hornets in the NBA. But MJ is not only renowned for his playing skills, because the former NBA player is an avid gambler. It’s reported he once lost nearly $5 million in a single night while playing craps in Las Vegas. The list is long!

#2: Terrance Watanabe

If you think MJ lost a fortune, wait for the story of Terrance Watanabe, an American businessman who inherited Oriental Trading Company. After inheriting the flourishing company from his parents in 1977, he sold it in 2000 and resigned as the president and CEO. Watanabe then became a philanthropist, losing most of his fortune to gambling. It’s reported that he once lost $127 million at Caesars Palace. His total gambling losses stand at $204 million. 

#1: Harry Kakavas

Harry Kakavas is another disappointing gambling story that has attracted researchers and storytellers worldwide. The real estate magnate from Australia lost more than $1.5 billion at Melbourne’s Crown Casino. This resulted in the famous Kakavas vs Crown Casino legal battle, where the gambler said the casino operator took advantage of his addiction. The court ruled in favor of Crown Casino after finding they had no case to answer. 

The Key Takeaways

These and many other stories of famous people losing fortunes at gambling don’t suggest gambling is wrong. The key is to plan your gambling budget and only gamble what you can afford to give away. Also, track and limit the time you spend on regulated online casino sites. Casino games should first of all be fun.

About the author
Emily Thompson
Emily Thompson

Emily "VegasMuse" Thompson is a seasoned online casino enthusiast from down under. With a keen eye for details and an inherent knack for strategizing, she has turned her passion for the online casino world into a successful writing career.

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