One of the original young guns of poker, Erik Lindgren has about 10 years of professional poker behind him and a lot to show for it. Born in 1976 in a small mountain town in California, he was one of three boys, all of which excelled in competitive sports. After physical conditions thwarted his dreams of playing in the NFL or NBA by the time he got to college, he soon realized that the Colusa Indian Casino wasn’t far from the junior college he attended. He worked as a blackjack dealer and learned that the casino was a perfect outlet for his competitive nature and intelligence, as well. At 19 he learned to play Texas Hold ‘em and eventually was spending more time playing poker than attending school.
Unbeknownst to his parents, Lindgren dropped out of college at 21 took a job at a San Pablo, California casino as a proposition player. To supplement his prop play wins, he set up three computers in his small apartment and played in up to eight games simultaneously at various poker websites, at times playing for up to 30 hours in a row. This brought his skill to a new level. He started playing tourneys and got the reputation of being a loose-aggressive player, for which he is known today. He was nicknamed “E-dog” by a casino regular, a name that he still uses today to play online poker at Full Tilt Poker, his sponsor site.
In 2002, after five years of full-time poker, he finally made the move to Las Vegas, which marked his emergence on the professional circuit. Right off the bat, he won the Bellagio Five Diamond Poker Classic, taking in almost $230K for his efforts, which was followed by a 2003 win at the WPT Ultimate Bet Poker Classic II.
In 2004, Lindgren knocked his friend and competitor, Daniel Negreanu, out of a heads-up match and won the Party Poker Million III. This event lead him to win the WPT Player of the Year for that same year. In 2005 he continued to win big money that included a 1st place win at the LA Poker Classic Professional Poker Tour in No-Limit Hold ‘em.
2006 saw a 3rd place win at the WPT No-Limit Hold ‘em Championship and a 1st place win at the Five Star World Poker Classic. He continued to out-rank his peers and took a 2nd place finish at the WSOP.
Negreanu wrote about Lindgren in his 2005 book, Making the Final Table, ”He is an extremely good-natured and generous person who's always up for anything. We have endured many of the ups and downs of living the poker life through our 20s, but we are able to keep each other grounded. Of course, we still know how to celebrate when all of the hard work pays off with a tournament win."
His lifestyle is that of a typical bachelor, in which he runs up five-figure bar tabs and boasts a Vegas apartment with six plasma TVs, a 65” screen, and two dual monitors that he uses to watch sports, while making bets with buddies to the tune of $50K on whether or not he can make a slam dunk.
His lifetime career winnings total more than $7 million and include one WSOP bracelet from a 2008 $5K Mixed Hold ‘em event. That same year, he also placed 3rd in the $50K HORSE tourney that paid him $781K.