BY RUSS SCOTT
RELEASE: APRIL 5, 2011
Can Poker’s Elite Teach You How to Become a Consistent Winner?
If you knew the secrets to winning at poker, would you reveal them? The answer appears to be yes, especially when there’s a fee involved.
Poker instruction has existed as long as the game itself, usually found in written form, but also available through training software and poker seminars.
Getting coached by a big-name pro hit the public spotlight at the 2006 World Series of Poker. Eventual main event champ Jamie Gold, an amateur, stepped away from the final table numerous times to consult with 10-time WSOP bracelet winner Johnny Chan.
You can bet they weren’t talking about the Las Vegas weather.
Chan and Gold, who won $12 million that day in the game’s biggest-ever payout, were careful not to violate the letter of the rule forbidding a player from receiving assistance during a hand.
They only chatted between hands, but did it in front of a huge TV audience and a packed arena. Some observers thought a trend might develop, and that’s what happened.
In 2008, the switch to delaying the main event final table from July to November opened up a four-month window for finalists to hire pros as coaches. With millions on the line, why wouldn’t an amateur pay for help?
Now, poker instruction from the game’s elite is about to kick things up another notch.
The most intriguing development comes from Phil Ivey, generally acknowledged as the best poker player in the world. Any day now, his new website, philivey.com, is expected to announce details fulfilling this one-sentence promise posted on the site:
“Now I’m going to teach the whole world to win at poker.”
There’s also a murky representation of a spinning Earth, suspenseful music, smoke coming from the letter “P” in Ivey’s name, and a close up of his famous poker stare.
Plenty of players visiting online poker chat rooms are anxious to see what comes next.
Meanwhile, specific dates have been announced for coaching sessions by Patrik Antonius and Tom “durrrr” Dwan, arguably the next two biggest names in the game after Ivey, especially when ranking online poker stars.
Neither reportedly has given a paid poker lesson before — unless, of course, you count the many times they have “schooled” opponents at the real and virtual felt!
Now, players will be able to bid (starting at $3,000!) for a one-on-one coaching session with Antonius on April 18 or Dwan on April 19, according to the new website expertinsight.com.
The website says it will “connect people in ways never before possible” using audio-visual technology.
Site developer Brandon Adams, a poker pro and Harvard professor, told poker media that a variety of coaching options will be available. He said most of the proceeds will go to the Morris Jeff Community School in New Orleans.
A quick look at the community school’s website indicates it’s a wonderful place and a deserving charity, but I wonder how many amateurs can afford $3,000-plus for a poker lesson.
I suppose if you could reasonably be sure the instruction would substantially improve your game, then the cost is a bargain.
Seems to me, however, that learning to play like Phil Ivey won’t assure a positive outcome for the student. Let’s face it, Ivey’s secrets work for him BECAUSE he’s Phil Ivey, not Joe Schmoe pretending to be Phil Ivey.
Besides, no one can duplicate his intimidating glare, anyhow.
E-mail your poker questions and comments to email@example.com for use in future columns. To find out more about Russ Scott and read previous LuckyDog Poker columns, visit www.creators.com or www.luckydogpoker.com.
COPYRIGHT 2011 RUSS SCOTT
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