Just before the second break in the action on Day 5 of the World Series of Poker Main Event, Debbie Sung Lee, 46, faced quite a decision. She saw two all-in shoves at her table and held pocket Queens. After some thought, she sent her hand to the muck and was thrilled with the results of her savvy fold. Her opponents turned over pocket Kings and Aces. When she revealed her hand to her boyfriend Ryan Brown during the break, he quickly gave her a high five for the big laydown.

Both were among the last 300 players left in the record-setting tournament and may prove that the couple that plays (poker) together, stays together. They rarely both have such big runs in a tournament but were all smiles at their success in the Main Event.

“It’s crazy,” Lee says of how things played out. “We usually have a bustout song we sing to cheer each other up. That’s how we get ready in the morning.”

The couple live in Ellicott City, Maryland, but travel throughout the country playing tournaments. So far things haven’t gone well for Brown at the WSOP. But a nice score in the Main Event could change all that. Their life on the poker road offers a microcosm of life as a professional tournament poker player.

“He's been super down,” Lee says. “We go through spurts of like, ‘Oh my God, we love tournaments. How can you not play?’ to ‘We’re never playing a tournament again.’ You know what I mean? That's just the roller coaster of poker.”

Brown adds: “These tournaments are high variance, huge fields, so you just have to keep after it. Just to make it this far kind of helps me recover from this summer. The rest is a freeroll. It’s a great experience no matter how things turn out..”

Before entering the poker world full time, Lee helped start a precious metals company. Brown, 38, worked in retail for a long time before working his way up the poker ladder with enough winnings to do it full time. He now has more than $334,000 in live tournament winnings, while she has $353,865. His biggest win came in 2016, finishing sixth in a $360 event at the Seminole Hard Rock Poker Open for $66,434. Her biggest win came in 2022 when she took 15th in the $10,000 Wynn Millions for $108,602.

Both had a shot to add to that significantly in the Horseshoe this week. Brown continued battling after the second break at the PokerGO feature table, but Lee hit the rail shortly after play resumed. She finished 276th and collected a nice $50,900.

Both claim that the other is the better player, but Lee makes it clear that she never wants to hear another bad beat story from her boyfriend. Earlier in the day, Brown was all in with Ace-Queen and somehow found a runner-runner straight on the turn and river to beat pocket Kings and pocket Aces with his tournament life at stake.Does the couple that plays so much poker together ever get tired of talking about poker?

“She can’t stand me sometimes,” Brown says.

She adds laughing: “I like puppy videos. What puts me to sleep are his (poker) study videos. It’s osmosis, that’s how I learn. I don’t need to actually watch.”

No matter how things turn out, Brown is staying positive about running so deep in such a massive event. The couple plans on taking a bit of time off for a vacation after the series but will soon be back on the poker road.

“We’re so fortunate to even play the Main Event,” Brown says. “I would never have thought I would even play. Today I knocked out Chris Moneymaker. I wouldn’t even be in poker if it wasn’t for Chris Moneymaker.”

No doubt Lee will now be heading to the rail to cheer him on, hoping for a final table appearance.

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WSOP, 2023 WSOP, WSOP 2023, Debbie Lee, Ryan Brown