The writers of the greatest movie ever made about poker, Rounders, penned a piece for Grantland honoring their now departed friend, Joel “Bagels” Rosenberg. While Rosenberg may not be a fixture on the international poker scene, he played an important part in poker being the real life inspiration for the pivotal character of “Joey Knish” in Rounders.
To hear Brian Koppelman and David Levien tell the tale of Joel, he was a true grinder who would take your money with a smile while on the felt but play the part of a giving, trusted friend outside of the game. It’s a great read packed with a few nice memories and some laughs from a guy that not many of us knew in real life, but came to love on the big screen.
“In the poker game of life, women are the rake.” We gave that line to Edward Norton’s Worm in the movie Rounders, but in real life, Joel “Bagels” Rosenberg said it, off the cuff, at 3 a.m., leaning against a wall at the Mayfair Club, an underground card room that used to be the center of the poker world in New York.
h/t to @SteveRuddock for the link