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Meet Craig "@ChipsMaxwell" S. — Reigning Champion of the Global Poker x PokerNews Cup!

Craig "@ChipsMaxwell" S, Global Poker x PokerNews Cup 2023 Sweeps Coin champion

Published: June 13, 2024
Written by Global Poker

Explore the journey, triumphs, and strategies that led Craig "@ChipsMaxwell" S, to become the Global Poker x PokerNews Cup 2023 Sweeps Coin champion.  

As we gear up for another thrilling season of the Global Poker x PokerNews Cup, we take a look back at last year’s crowned champion’s victory. Join us as we chat to Craig "@ChipsMaxwell" S. from Sheridan, Indiana, the 2023 Sweeps Coin Global Poker x Pokernews Cup winner, about his personal poker journey, tactics and what drives his passion for the game.

My poker journey, what a ride!

My love for cards came at a very young age. I started off playing games like Euchre, Pinochle, and Gin Rummy with my family at four years old. I can still recall these days when my great-uncle Bill would say, "We play for blood in this family!", as he would sit down for his turn on the table, and the rest of my family would just play for fun. When I started playing poker fifteen years later, I was grateful that he instilled those words in me.


When did you start playing poker? 

I started playing online poker at the start of the poker boom in the early 2000s. I originally played thousands and thousands of poker tournaments in ‘play money tournaments’ (Global Poker's Gold Coin equivalent) until 2010 when I made my first deposit on Poker Stars. During this time, I would also hone my skills by playing small house tournaments with my friends and going to play at bar leagues throughout Indianapolis. I have no great answers to why I played play money poker for six years, but there is no doubt in my mind that this time in my life is where my passion for tournament poker began.

What do you love most about poker? 

I can relate poker to everything in everyday situations, but I like to explain poker tournaments like a good detective book. Every action made is a sentence, every hand is a paragraph, every orbit is a page or two, and every break you reach is a chapter. There are characters that come and go (and sometimes come back) throughout the story that you need to watch get terminated, or sometimes, you need to terminate. All while trying to survive yourself. One of the best parts of it is that everyone playing gets to be an author and create their own version to the sentence being written.

What’s your go-to poker game? 

I’m a huge tournament fanatic. There's no better feeling than watching a whole room of players dwindle down to all of their chips sitting in front of you. Or, you going back to the lobby and realizing you beat out 717 people in this tournament you just grinded out for hours. I have a very, very small sample size lifetime in ring games compared to multi-table tournaments, but that's because I have never felt the satisfaction in a winning cash game session, like I did in winning the nightly Scuffle or weekend Bonanza on Global Poker.

@ChipsMaxwell Sheridan

How long have you been playing Global Poker?

I've been playing on Global Poker since early 2017. My good friend Adam "Tizull" mentioned that he was playing on this new poker website that had tournaments that wouldn't take 16 hours, and I could play from my phone. I got signed up, purchased $20... and immediately started winning!

What fuels your passion off the felt? 

I travel with my family. I have an amazing wife, son, and dog that fuels my fire outside of poker. My wife is an American Sign Language Interpreter by profession, but she has a knack for planning fun attractions for us to do when we travel for my son's baseball games and vacations. I know that I would not be the person that  I am today without her! My son might have had just as much effect on my life as my wife, but I've known her longer, so she gets the nod. As he is going into his senior year in high school, I'm going to cherish these last few travel baseball tournaments and high school season the most. My dog Oliver is a pug. He's been one of my best friends!

@ChipsMaxwell PokerNews Cup trophy

What was your biggest win? 

My biggest poker win was last year on Global Poker with the PokerNews x Global Poker series. I was fortunate enough to defeat 53 other contestants in the finale for SC100,000 after calling my shot the night before (winning the semi-finals)!! What a ride! I did feel like it was a long time coming, and it is the absolute smallest six-figure score you could possibly get, but I did it, and it still feels awesome!

What’s the story behind the name, ‘ChipsMaxwell’? 

I thought of the name "@ChipsMaxwell" when I left a former company I was working at. The VP of Business Development had the nickname Chip, and his last name was Maxwell. When I left (in large part due to him), I spitefully told him I was going to make his name more famous than he could. Because, I play for blood.