Brandi Hawbaker was a semi-professional poker player and notable and controversial poker personality.
Also known a Brandi Rose and Naami Dea, not much is known about Brandi's life before before poker. She was thought to be born in 1982 in Omaha, Nebraska, and lived a very troubled childhood and ended up leaving home at a young age. She spent years working odd jobs in different places entering the poker world.
Her first notable finish was a 35th place finish at the 2006 WPT Festa del Lago tournament for $20,875 after winning her way in through a satellite. She also finished in 55th place in the 2007 WSOP $2,000 No-Limit Hold'em event for $8,359. After then she was seen around various poker rooms playing cash games and entering tournaments. As a amateur player looking to turn pro she was having trouble building a bankroll and was looking for someone to stake her.
After her WPT finish there was a photo her covering her breast with a logo of an online poker site, which seemed to magnified her allure. In her search for a staker, she then became involved in a mentoring relationship with former WSOP Main Event winner, "Captain" Tom Franklin. Brandi posted on a poker forum telling about an event that took place where Franklin tried to force himself on her. Franklin posted a denial.
Then, her mentoring relationship with David Sklansky created more drama. Sklansky reportedly gave his poker mentoring services in return for favors from Brandi. Nobody knows what exactly went on, but posters on internet forums had a lot of fun speculating.
Brandi was then involved in a personal relationship with someone named Brandon. Their relationship created more drama and played out on the internet with talk about what problems they were having as well as a sex tape being posted.
There were also minor alleged incidents involving Mark Newhouse, Dustin “Neverwin” Woolf, and Bryan Micon that played out over internet forums as well as alleged hookups with Jamie Gold and Gus Hansen.
Because of her emotional issues and her mental illness, and all the drama that happened, Brandi was found dead in Los Angeles on April 13, 2008 from an apparent suicide.
HPG ADMIN on February 27, 2013