Playing Poker vs. Aggressive Opponents

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Loose, aggressive opponents are the worst. The ones that never fold when you’re bluffing, and always play back at you.
(of course, it seems like the one time we DO make a hand they actually fold).

Let’s face it, aggression is tough to combat.

Instead of fighting aggression with aggression, which often leads to insane variance wars, ego battles and compromising situations, we must learn to balance aggression with strong foundational poker.

But how do we do that without being too straight forward? How do we combat aggression without giving away our strategy? And most importantly, how do we know when to change our strategy and vs. what types of opponents?

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The Future of Poker

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It’s no secret that poker has gotten harder over the years. With the influx of technology, statistical programs, forums, training sites and sheer interest, the game has evolved.

FAST.

Players do two things: move up or move out. And many have moved out.

This dramatic, exponential growth has sparked fear in the hearts of aspiring players. Is poker a sustainable job? Is there still money to be made?

Many accuse me of being an optimist, but my view has always been that more people, more money and inevitably more sponsors has been extremely beneficial for poker. Sure the game has gotten harder, but there’s also more money to be made now than ever!

And that’s because there’s simply more interest. With the online poker economy moving toward regulation, the change in the way poker is shown on TV, growing public acceptance and more future sponsorship opportunity there will be players making more money than ever before.

Of course there are drawbacks. The level of competency which one needs to succeed will be higher. And the percentage of those who do will be smaller. But this follows the progression of any other sport. Look at today’s baseball players, and those 100 years ago. It’s harder to succeed, but those that do are in a great spot.

It also means that the way people will make money will change. Online poker has become extremely saturated, but the live scene is bigger and more flourishing than ever. New products, sponsors and tools will become available (again, think of baseball – there’s bats, balls, jerseys, hats, training schools, and tons of merchandise).

Another thing that will change is the type of player that one needs to be to thrive, the type the public expects due to how poker is being marketed on TV. Successful players will also need to be good ambassadors, classy and professional.

Check out today’s video to learn how you can stay on top of your game and make sure the ever changing poker industry doesn’t pass you by!

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How Mentors Help Shape One’s Career

There’s an excellent quote by Donald Trump that says “Your net worth is the average of the 5 people closest to you.”

It’s so true.

On a deeper level we can modify it and see it applies not just to money, but to other facets of our life: success, happiness, love, etc.

When Valentino asked me, “How important was having a mentor and group of like minded people to surround yourself with,” I simply cannot over state it.

Growing up in poker at a time where many of my colleagues and peers were influencing and shaping the poker industry, and feeding off their courage, experience and sharing knowledge was absolutely instrumental to my success.

But how do you accomplish that today, in a time where poker is more saturated, competitive and the barrier to entry is much more difficult?

What can having mentors teach us about the way to improve our games, ourselves and lead our lives?

You’ve got questions. Today’s video has answers.
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The TWO Things You Must Know Before Your Next Poker Session

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What’s the longest session you played? It’s almost as if gloating about some epic 50 hour session warrants us a reward. While it is cool and makes for a good story, it doesn’t often produce the best results.

And here, we’re all about making winners.

I’m a big fan of working backwards, particularly because most common knowledge is just that; backwards! So let’s look at the flip side of this: what is the shortest session you’ve ever played?

If I’m being honest, I’m hard pressed to think of times where I sit down for less than 4 hours. I take for granted that I’m going to perform my best for as long as I’m at the table.

But we all know it isn’t that easy. To really ensure top notch results, we have two options: improve our stamina, or play shorter sessions.

Improving Stamina: There’s many things I have suggested on how to do this, including improving diet, exercising and through connecting with a purpose. But even the best of the best have a limit. It’s important to be honest with yourself, and use introspection to find where that limit is for you. Continue reading


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