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Podcast on poker, with a focus on the members and friends of The Back Room, the participant-driven poker study forum. Hosted by Chris M., aka Persuadeo and Dean Martin. Visit us at persuadeo.nl

The Poker Zoo Podcast Chris M. aka Persuadeo & Dean Martin

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Podcast on poker, with a focus on the members and friends of The Back Room, the participant-driven poker study forum. Hosted by Chris M., aka Persuadeo and Dean Martin. Visit us at persuadeo.nl

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 49: Jerry aka Imperator

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 49: Jerry aka Imperator

    This week on the Zoo Jerry Monaco, once the popular Imperator on the Red Chip Poker forum, emerges from radio silence. Back in the day on RCP when not only their founders posted but we were joined by Matt Berkey, Christian Soto, and other names in poker, Jerry gave us some of our most thoughtful threads. On today's pod, we go all over the map from Covid to king-five, pharmaceutical culture to poker culture, and plenty of odds and ends in between.

    If we have some knowledge of our own uncertainty about our measurements of our opponents and her ranges; if we have some measurement of our own stupidity (faults, mistakes, leaks, egoism, etc); and if we can use all of this and more in our games to know ourselves and know others; then we should be able to win more and play better.

    Easier said than done.

    One aspect of our uncertainty is variance. The cards come at us randomly and we will never know which cards are coming next. We use math to estimate the probabilities of and tolerance of each hand. (But part of that tolerance is what we call "fold equity;" an uncertain estimate of our opponents tolerance of our bets.) Let us call these measurements "mathematical."

    Another aspect of uncertainty is whether we should quit the poker table or not or whether we can select a good seat or see our opponents faces or measure and trust our opponents "tells". Let us call these measurements "psychological."

    What ever you call all this, entropy by any other name is still entropy, positive or negative, more or less, and can be measured with some (un)certainty.

    So yes, the game is not about being smart. It is usually the ones who think they are "smart" who also have false confidence, egoism, and pride. These are all psychological leaks. Such people mismeasure their own stupidity. The game is in part about not being as stupid as we usually are as biological beings who only have a limited capacity to make accurate measurements of anything, mathematically or psychologically.

    • 1 Std. 32 Min.
    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 48: Doug Hull and the Easy Life

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 48: Doug Hull and the Easy Life

    The Zoo continues to talk to poker coaches, with this week's guest being Doug Hull of the popular Red Chip Poker low-stakes training site. Doug was one of four original founders, which also include James "Splitsuit" Sweeney, Solve 4 Why's Christian Soto, and of course the "noted poker authority" himself, Ed Miller. Doug tells us about his unusually well-ordered life in poker, including his involvement in the "F.I.R.E" approach to life planning. We learn from Doug how RCP got started and hear about some of its challenges. Doug closes with his thoughts on how all of us need to get along at the poker table.

    If you are going to play, you might as well win. Winning poker is not intuitive, the self-taught poker genius is a myth.

    Everything you need to become a winning player is written. Read Ed Miller, Doug Hull and Matt Janda.  The information is right there. However, the leap from reading to fully understanding and implementing is huge. That is where a coach comes in.

    When Ed Miller was my coach, he showed me some conceptual roadblocks that were stopping me from playing better. I never would have seen them myself. I will do the same for you.

    I teach what I know: low-limit, live, no-limit Texas Hold’em. 95% of all poker players lose in the long term. I can teach you to be on the better side of that line.  I do not have some huge multi-million dollar success story, but I am able to consistently book wins.  You can too.

    • 46 Min.
    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 47: Alvin Teaches Poker Coaching

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 47: Alvin Teaches Poker Coaching

    Alvin Lau returns to the Zoo to talk poker industry and to continue our series covering the coaching for profits scene. We go over both coaching successes and failures, and investigate their causes. Yes, Alvin gets in some direct thoughts about other training sites, but his attitude has clearly changed as he settles into a now established poker coaching practice. With the quarantine boom in full swing, we also mull the reasons to play, how much to play, and when, maybe, to put it on the line against the big guns.

    You can find more about Alvin's coaching at his website, Overnightmonster.com, as well as on his Youtube channel.

    Links to previous coaching for profits podcasts:

    Episode 43: Luka turns to CFP and Nick Howard

    Episode 40: Coaching for Profits with KYT

    Episode 36: Odb_Blackbaron/DLF on CFP

    Dean opens the show with a short chat with Greg Porter and his Scientific Poker Strategy webinar.

    As a side note, the OOP games continue to expand, adding some SNGs and more cash sessions. It's not the easiest game and won't help you take direct advantage of the "boom," but its purpose as a deepstack trainer is working out well and has been a lot of fun. Contact oop.pppclub@gmail.com for more information.

    Stay safe.

    • 1 Std. 1 Min.
    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 46: Andrew Seidman & Easy Game

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 46: Andrew Seidman & Easy Game

    A remarkable guest on today's Zoo - Andrew Seidman (aka Baluga Whale for the true old schoolers), author of Easy Game. One of poker's finest texts, TBR members are especially familiar with the book, and really, most poker players should be. Part strategy document, part coaching journal, it can be read in a very light way as a review or for a few new ideas, or Easy Game can be taken very seriously, especially the later chapters, where Seidman is reaching to elucidate concepts that are still relevant in 2020. Andrew and I discuss not only the book, but the circumstances surrounding its creation, chat about the poker good life, recall his deflating heads-up match with Jungleman, and close with some serious advice for aspiring pros.

    Thanks to Andrew for finding time, and to Eugene for putting this together. Easy Game inadvertently became a big part of my coaching life in 2017 - a tidbit about that is at the end of this piece. Also, a little bonus - here's a selection from the book for those who may be confused about the origin and use of poker vocabulary, which is a pain point for some in the community.

    I’ve always been fascinated with language. It’s impossible to really understand something without choosing the proper words for it. You’ve probably heard the saying, “You don’t understand something until you can explain it to a two-year-old”. With that in mind, I am very strict about what words I use and what I teach others to use. Knowing and using the right words is helpful in any nuanced debate, but it’s even more helpful in the time-sensitive environment of a poker game. If you’re playing 8 tables, you don’t have time to wade through a swamp of incomplete ideas, reproductions of things you’ve seen in videos, unsophisticated philosophies, and irrelevant information en route to finding the right answer. No—you need the right answer now. To make that happen, you need the path of least resistance to that answer. This is where language comes in. When your words are carefully chosen, you avoid distractions and move smoothly from point A to point B to point C until you’ve found the answer you were looking for. Throughout this book, I use a lot of terminology. Much of the terminology I’ve developed myself. Some I’ve borrowed from others. All of it is carefully chosen to describe specific elements of a complex game. I hope you’ll find this type of linguistic structure helpful on your quest to understand poker more fully.

    • 47 Min.
    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 45: Paul Hewson & Poker Writing

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 45: Paul Hewson & Poker Writing

    Today on the Zoo we speak with long time sports betting and poker writer Paul Hewson. He's an avid tournament player who shares with us how he got into the game and became a winner. (For the curious, here's some Hewson pieces on Bodog.) We talk Corona, how to learn poker, tournament strategy, and try to answer that age-old question: is poker a sport?

    The image above is one of Cézanne's Card Player oils, a favorite of Paul's.

    For those of you who missed it, here's the link to Greg Porter's Scientific Poker Strategy webinar.

    Good luck and be safe.

    • 41 Min.
    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 44: Lukich Out Loud

    The Poker Zoo, Ep. 44: Lukich Out Loud

    Micheal Lukich returns to the Zoo, and a lot has changed for him. Michael is playing bigger, winning more, and has come into his own as a participant in the poker community. For the student of the game, he has created a poker learning website worth looking at. He's made public appearances on the controversial Solve For Why show Poker Out Loud. Michael is a data guy so we spend some time reviewing his work on flop texture, but get the inside scoop on POL as well.

    Check out Lukich's earlier appearance on the Zoo.



    I had been thinking about a bigger poker-related project for a while now. I started developing my strategy in the 2nd half of last year, and I’ll certainly be working on that through 2020 (and possibly beyond). In creating it, I did have one concern - I wasn’t sharing my thoughts broadly to challenge my thinking. Sure, I have shared some of it with my smaller poker circle that I have developed through Solve for Why. But that’s not going to fully give me broader criticism that I need to push me for success.

    So that’s how this website idea was born. I ultimately wanted to expand the audience for my work primarily as a way to share my perspective and challenge my thinking. I am not sure what it’ll turn into, but my initial plan is to publish something weekly. Some weeks will be a shorter post or an idea I’m working through, while others will be a full-fledged presentation on a subject I’ve spent significant time working on.

    I’m excited to engage with the community in a different way. 2019 was amazing for my growth as a poker player. I met some amazing people and broke through some plateaus that I’ve been struggling with for some time. I’m hoping this project is a way in which I can continue the upward trajectory and (hopefully) make a positive contribution to the thought process of others along the way.



    FYI: There's still time to sign up for what will be a game-changer for many of you: Porter's Scientific Poker Strategy webinar on March 21st. Find out more here.

    Also, the OOP club game continues to run and will expand. We currently play deep stack microstakes game for fun and practice, but will be adding more games in view of the necessary downtime. Contact us at oop.pppclub@gmail.com.

    Good luck to everyone in the crisis. I'll be upping my podcast rate to provide something to listen to.

    • 51 Min.

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