The Finnish superstar, who splashed on the scene with a win in the PokerStars EPT Copenhagen back in 2009 for over $1.1 million, is now studying finance at the Hanken School of Economics in Vaasa, a city on the west coast of Finland.
“Life is, after all, quite short,” Kyllönen said, looking back on 10 years in poker. “It would be nice to try something else. It also one of the reasons why I decided to apply for the school.”
“LIFE IS, AFTER ALL, QUITE SHORT. IT WOULD BE NICE TO TRY SOMETHING ELSE.
Early on in his career, Kyllönen said he was thinking of retiring after poker. While that was his initial goal, once he had made enough to do so he decided to pursue other interests instead of giving up on working altogether. He applied for the school a while ago and got in.
Part of the reason for quitting poker, according to the article, is he had gotten too involved in poker. With the monetary goal no longer in place because he accomplished that some time ago already, he didn’t have the same drive as before.
“The fact is that the global poker market has been declining for a long time and interest in the sport has declined as well,” he said.
On top of those reasons, Kyllönen said that the unorthodox rhythm he had as a poker player was part of the reason why he quit. With him starting a session while his wife got out of school, he felt his profession didn’t have a positive impact on his relationship.
Kyllönen famously bought in for the inaugural $1,000,000 buy in Big One for One Drop back in 2012 without selling any action. He busted on Day 1, being the third player to go home.
Kyllönen made the biggest score of his life last summer, winning his first bracelet in the $25,000 Pot-Limit Omaha High Roller for $1,127,035, bringing his total earnings live to $2,822,256. He currently sits in fourth place on the Finnish all-time money list behind Juha Helppi, Patrik Antonius and Jani Sointula.
Online, Kyllönen played the majority of his time on PokerStars. Under the nickname “Jeans89,” Kyllönen profited $5,226,571 according to his HighStakesDB profile. The majority of the 635,522 hands he logged were in Pot-Limit Omaha, making for an average of $8.22 a hand since the site started tracking him in 2011. Kyllönen played as “Ingenious89” on Full Tilt Poker. He played over 152,555 hands and he won $222,240 for an average of $1.45 a hand.
Just last January, Kyllönen won the Player of the Year award at the Finnish Poker Awards in Casino Helsinki.