John Cernuto

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John Cernuto
Miami John Cernuto.jpg
John "Miami" Cernuto playing in the WPT Main Event at the Mirage
Nickname(s)Miami John
ResidenceLas Vegas, Nevada
Born (1944-01-10) January 10, 1944 (age 75)
World Series of Poker
Money finish(es)65
Highest ITM
Main Event finish
345th, 2011
World Poker Tour
Final table(s)3
Money finish(es)9
European Poker Tour
Final table(s)1
Money finish(es)3
Information accurate as of 26 March 2017.

John Anthony Cernuto (born January 10, 1944 in Jersey City, New Jersey)[1] also known as Miami, is an American professional poker player based in Las Vegas, Nevada, specialising in Omaha hi-lo events. Cernuto has won over $5,500,000 in live tournament winnings, his largest score was for $259,150 from his $2,000 No Limit Hold'em bracelet victory in the 1997 World Series of Poker.

Early years[edit]

Before embarking on his poker career, Cernuto graduated Florida State University as a finance major. After graduating, he worked as an air traffic controller; when President Ronald Reagan fired the air traffic controllers during a 1981 strike, he turned to poker for his profession.

Poker career[edit]

World Series of Poker[edit]

He first cashed in the World Series of Poker (WSOP) after making the final table in the 1989 World Series of Poker in the $5,000 Seven-card stud event, he finished fourth in the final table, which featured David Sklansky, Humberto Brenes, Gabe Kaplan, and the tournament winner Don Holt.

Five WSOP cashes followed before Cernuto won his first bracelet in the 1996 WSOP $1,500 seven card stud split tournament, he also won the $2,000 no limit hold'em event in the 1997 World Series of Poker and the $1,500 limit Omaha event in the 2002 World Series of Poker.

Cernuto made an impressive three final tables in the 2006 World Series of Poker, two in Seven Card Stud and one in Razz.

During the $2,500 Razz tournament of the 2009 WSOP, Cernuto collapsed and was taken to a hospital, where he spent the night after being diagnosed with internal bleeding.[2]

At the 2011 World Series of Poker Main Event, Cernuto finished in 345th place for his best career placement in the World Championship.

As of the 2016 World Series of Poker, Cernuto has cashed in at least one event at the World Series of Poker every year since 1992, his 65 cashes place him in the top 15 of the all time WSOP tournament cashes list.

World Series of Poker bracelets[edit]

Year Tournament Prize (US$)
1996 $1,500 Seven Card Stud Split $147,000
1997 $2,000 No Limit Hold'em $259,150
2002 $1,500 Limit Omaha $73,320

Other poker achievements[edit]

In 1988, Cernuto won the $1,000 Seven Card Stud event at Amarillo Slim's Super Bowl of Poker tournament series, earning a cash prize of $58,000 in addition to the title; the victory at the SBOP was Cernuto's first career victory in a major poker tournament.

In 2003, he won the third World Heads-Up Poker Championship in Vienna, outlasting a field including fellow professionals Ivo Donev, Ram Vaswani, Dave Colclough, Scotty Nguyen, and Padraig Parkinson on the way to the €60,000 grand prize.

Cernuto has also made one World Poker Tour (WPT) final table at the 2005 PokerStars Caribbean Poker Adventure event won by John Gale.

Poker winnings[edit]

As of 2017, his total live tournament winnings exceed $5,500,000,[3] his 65 cashes at the WSOP account for $1,715,840 of those winnings.[4]

In 2019, actor James Woods, a close friend of John’s coined him the “Ironman of Poker”, as John is the all time leader in poker tournament cashes.


Cernuto has made appearances on the Ultimate Blackjack Tour, making a final table in the Elimination Blackjack event where he played in a tournament format of the game of blackjack.

Personal life[edit]

Cernuto is divorced, he has a son, Tony, who is also a poker player and a daughter, Deborah.


External links[edit]