She's got to be one of the coolest chicks in the world. She's got some jaw-dropping dance moves and she'll own you at the tables. American Pie hottie Shannon Elizabeth has been rockin’ on the sixth season of Dancing With The Stars and the leggy beauty just may have a chance to pull off the win. But DWTS isn’t the only competition Elizabeth has her mind on these days. She may be putting in hours of dance practice a week to show-off her sultry moves in front of 20 million viewers, but she’s also been diligently practicing her poker skills to get ready for the World Series of Poker. I caught up with the card-playing starlett to chat about dance practice, her new love for cash games and training for the World Series.
What made you decide to do Dancing With The Stars? Did they approach you or did you approach them?
They’ve asked me every year and I’ve just never been able to do it before with my scheduling and stuff so this seemed like it was the year.
Are you excited for the major workout you’ll be getting? You said you are already sore.
Yeah this is a different kind of workout then what I’m used to for sure. And I love choreographed dance and I love that we’re doing some really advanced moves.
Who do you think is your biggest competition?
You know I think Mario and Kristy Yamaguchi are gonna be like shoe-ins for the finals.
Yeah, she already has some dancing experience. Had you ever danced before?
A little when I was young but it’s been a long time.
Did you and Derek Hough click right away?
Yeah we got along from the minute we met. I think we have good chemistry, which is definitely important.
So what poker games have you been into playing lately?
Lately I’ve been doing more cash games. There are some really good cash games in town that you can make some good money at and they’re close by. That’s been my new thing is the cash.
Where do you play?
Well there are private places in town. I can’t say where they are. But I also go to Hawaiian Gardens for a cash game and occasionally Commerce.
What players do you look up to?
Annie Duke is my poker coach. It’s great. She’s teaching me all the mixed games so when the World Series comes I can play all the horse events and the limit events.
Are you still doing any celebrity poker events?
Not really. I mainly do the pro thing.
What tournaments are you looking forward to this year?
Um, you always look forward to the World Series especially if I’m going to play a lot of the games I don’t normally play, not the no-limit games but the other stuff. I’m looking forward to that.
What got you into poker to begin with?
Just raising money for charity. I have my animal rescue and I wanted to raise money for that.
Right after the first tournament were you hooked?
I didn’t like it at first but there were a few different tournaments that were to raise money and eventually I liked it.
What didn’t you like?
I thought it was a boring game and I didn’t understand it.