WATCH: Brave Cowboys Play ‘Cowboy Poker’ Game Made Popular in ‘Yellowstone,’ Get Obliterated by Bull

by Amy Myers

Who in the world would voluntarily play “cowboy poker” in the middle of a ring where a bull waits anxiously behind a metal gate? The answer: these brave men.

While cowboy poker has only recently come into a wider spotlight (thanks to Yellowstone), the dangerous game has been around for ages and is actually a tradition at rodeos. The rules are fairly simple. A group of men, typically four, gather around a table with cards in hand. They play a round of poker until an agitated bull breaks up the party, heading full force at the plastic chairs. Instead of playing a good hand, the winner of the game is the last one seated at the flimsy table. More often than not, it’s a quick game that leaves its players limping out of the arena.

No doubt, these men need a couple of shots of liquid courage before getting in that ring.

On Saturday, four new brave men entered the arena at the Wild Thing Championship Bull Riding in Gallup, New Mexico. According to organizer Larry Peterson, cowboy poker is a nightly occurrence that takes place between fireworks and other big-ticket events.

“They get hammered pretty hard,” the former bull rider told He also shared that the first-place winner gets $500 and a commemorative belt buckle.

You can watch the latest nail-biting, pearl-clutching video here.

Bull Takes Down Three Cowboy Poker Players in Just One Hit

In the clip, it sees a bullfighter stand at the ready at the table, protected by a plastic bubble. Seconds into the game, arena staff rip open the gates and let the beast into the ring. As expected, the bull took down the bullfighter first before hitting the barrel a few yards away.

And that’s when the cowboys’ luck ran out.

The bull rounded to stare down the men before choosing its first victim. Sure enough, the bull lifted all three men out of their seats in just one charge. Though it was a close call, the man in the teal shirt won the game by a hair, patiently waiting for his competitors to lift out of their seats and high-tail it to the gates.

Unfortunately for the first victim, he also seems to be the primary victim. Once he lept out of his seat, the bull charged again, rolling the man like an old carpet across the dirt. Thankfully, it didn’t feel the need to take any further action and backed off, snorting all the while.

Compared to the most recent clip, the three men got off easy in this round of cowboy poker.