Kane ‘Nascar_1949’ Kalas – Risks and Riches

He’s been living the life he wanted to live for quite some time, but not a lot of people will spark up when hearing the name Kane Kalas. Not yet at least because this 23-year old professional is about a lot more than just high stakes poker. Most online poker players will know him as Nascar_1949, while sports fanatics get chills thinking back of his father’s legendary baseball calls. Harry Kalas, Philadelphia Phillies sportscaster and member of the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame, was Kane’s father and the shoes he’s trying to fill are not by any means small. The young Kalas opened up to PokerReviewList and spoke his mind about an array of topics.

Kane Kalas has appeared on the baseball pitch numerous times performing both the US National Anthem and God Bless America. You can check out his performances online by clicking one of the following links. He performed the National Anthem during the Phillies first home game after his father’s passing in 2009. At the Memorial Day Parade in 2009 he read one of his father’s poems and in an on-the-field interview he spoke about missing his father during the Phillies’ post-season in 2010. During that same post-season series against the San Francisco Giants he also sang God Bless America. During the seventh inning of a Phillies game against the Arizona Diamonbacks he also sang God Bless America in a sold-out stadium.

What have you been up to lately?
Well, I played the LAPC at Commerce Casino and some of the cash games there as well. After that I went off to San Jose for the Bay 101 Shooting Star Main Event. Unfortunately no luck in those places so now I’m back in Malta grinding online.

Let’s just get right into it. I’ve heard stories that you are an avid craps fan. What’s up with that?
Yeah, I enjoy playing a little bit. It’s fun and if you play properly in craps the casino edge is only something like 0.6%. In Vegas you can get free drinks and not give up too much of an edge while you still get very good comps. That makes it not that minus EV to do. Also, you meet so many cool people at the craps table, and the last time I met this big real estate guy from Asia. It’s a pretty social game and I prefer it to blackjack or roulette.

Do you have the optimal strategy figured out?
It’s very easy to learn the optimal craps strategy. Just bet the pass line and take the max odds on your bet, that’s basically playing optimal. Most people play the pass line and don’t take max odds, or bet the hard ways and horn bets. On those the casino has a much bigger edge. If you play the way I play you only giving up .6% on every dollar that you bet so that’s pretty small.

Does a casino not look at the way you play the game? You would almost assume they give bigger comps to players who bet 12 the hard way all the time.
No, they pretty much are just looking at the amount that I’m betting. They are not really differentiating between the players and what I like to do is buy in for a very high amount which I’m not even going to use, let’s say $15,000. That amount gets recorded but I just play the table minimum or at least just very small. When the pit boss comes over, he’s the one who records how much everyone is betting; I start going crazy and bet a lot. I’ve done this for a while and get pretty big comps while I don’t give up too much of an edge.

Can everyone apply this strategy easily or is this something you have to know the casino very well for?
Anybody could do this; you just need to recognize the one who is in charge. He’ll be the guy with the clipboard walking around in between the tables writing down what everyone’s betting. There are lots of tricks I’ve picked up on in Vegas. When you ever go to a bar in Vegas you should never just pay for your drink, just play some Video Poker, order a drink and get it for free. After you get your drink you can just cash out and leave the table. When you buy the drink outright it’ll cost you like $8 while you could also be playing Video Poker for $0.50 per hand.

What’s the biggest comp you’ve ever gotten from playing casino games?
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to accept it, since they only gave me a month to use it. It was five nights in a suite in either The Palazzo or The Venetian, with a steak dinner for one and $700 of free table play. When I actually wanted to go to Vegas I called them up because I wanted to use the comp. They told me it was expired and I could now get three nights in a regular room, $50 in table play and a complimentary muffin! I swear that’s what they said! (laughing). I was like, “I’ll pass on the muffin!”

What’s your biggest win or losing session on the craps tables?
My biggest winning session was $13,200 and my biggest losing session was like $6,000 at MGM. 

So are you a lifetime winner at the craps tables?
Yeah, I’m up at craps but down at blackjack. But lifetime I’m probably up a small amount on table games. Nothing crazy though, I mostly play just for entertainment value and you can get a lot of free drinks and comps out of it. Also, I’ve met quite some interesting people at the craps tables, unlike blackjack. I don’t think I’ve ever met someone at a blackjack table who I’ve kept in touch with.

I’ve heard you’ve got quite some theories on blackjack.
I’m not perfect at counting cards but when I play Blackjack I try to keep track of whether the deck is light or heavy and by how much. I don’t want do that for too long because you can get banned from that by the casino if they think you’re counting. So I make sure, when I’m playing Blackjack, that I play either very short sessions so they never catch on, or I try to go with people who are not doing that and bet a lot more than I do. In that case, if they suspect you are counting cards they will not kick you out because they don’t want to lose the big whale who’s betting thousands of dollars a hand.

So that’s your way of getting around the system?
Pretty much. If you’re a professional card counter I would suggest making friends with big blackjack whales. It’s going to be pretty unlikely for the casino to kick you out when you’re with three guys who are losing more than you’re winning. 

Tipping is one of those things that really affect your hourly losing rate when it comes to playing table games and poker. Does this mean you are a bad tipper because you are always looking for the little edges?
In most aspects of life I’m a pretty generous tipper but at table games I’m a much less than average tipper. I’m looking at in a way of: How much was I expected to lose? A lot of people look at it like this. Let’s say they play craps for five hours and lose $5,000. Over the course of those five hours they’ve probably been tipping the times that they’ve won. So despite the fact that they’ve lost $5,000 they still probably tipped anywhere between $50 and $100. 

Now if they win $5,000 they’ve tipped around the same amount and tip an additional $25 or $50. If you look at it like that it really adds up. That’s how most people tip but for me, I don’t tip until the very end and then I tip whether I’ve won or lost. It’s normally a small amount and that night when I won $13,200, I maybe tipped $20 or $30. I was going to tip that anyway, even if I would’ve lost $13,200 in that session. I don’t think they were too happy when I won that much.

So you would tip a lot more on a $200 dinner compared to a $5,000 craps session?
Yeah, because at that $200 dinner I go in knowing how much I’m willing to spend. At the craps table it significantly changes how much I’m expected to lose if you give out these giant tips. Most professional poker players don’t tip very well at all at the poker table. It makes a lot of sense because it affects your hourly rate. If you look at the average poker game from five years ago when there were a lot more amateur players compared to professionals, you can see that dealers were making a much better living. Now, even in the highest stakes games, you might win a big pot and only tip like one or two dollars. Five years ago they might’ve thrown the dealer two $25 chips.

Do you play in any of those big live games, or do you focus a lot more on online poker?
I much prefer online poker. You can get so many more hands per hour, you can work on your game so much faster and it’s a lot more intellectually stimulating than playing live. I play live occasionally and I actually really enjoyed the games at the Aussie Millions. A $25/$25/$50 PLO was running almost every day and the games were pretty good. After that I played live at the Commerce in a $20/$40 PLO game, but I didn’t think those games were good. I also didn’t really like the Commerce, it seems like a pretty depressing place to me. 

Do you think live poker is a lot tougher on your mental state than online poker?
It’s actually the opposite. Live poker is much easier and also much less intellectually stimulating. So when I’m playing live poker I feel like I’m not really utilizing my full mental capacity because I’m just folding and doing absolutely nothing most of the time.  

When I’m playing online poker I’m always thinking about specific spots and sometimes maybe two, three or four at the same time. It’s just much more stimulating and rewarding, and your game will improve much faster. After an online session I can just review my session with Holdem Manager or Poker Tracker. Live you don’t have software so you won’t be able to learn as quickly because you’re just sitting there guessing, “How did I play that session?” or “How did these other players I respect at the table play?” Live you’re not only playing just one table, you’re also playing about one fourth of the hands at a specific table compared to what you could be playing online.

Kane (left) with his brothers before the Phillies’ game against the San Diego Padres on April 19th 2009 in a tribute to his father. (Photo: Drew Hallowell/Getty Images North America)

How have you remained under the radar in the poker world or was it a conscience decision not to seek media attention?
I just think it depends on the games you’re playing. Obviously the people who are the most famous are the ones who had one, or two or three, deep runs in live tournaments. Those are the people who are the most recognizable names, the ones who had big tournament results. After that it seems to be primarily high stakes online heads up players. I think a lot of online players will probably recognize my Full Tilt Poker screen name as I played a lot more there historically. I don’t think they necessarily know my name in real life but that has to do with the games you’re playing. After Black Friday I took around eight months off poker and these days I probably play around 30 to 35 hours a week. It’s nice when people recognize you but things like, ego or being called Mister poker champion are not the reasons I play. I do this for a living, that’s the bottom line. I like to live a good lifestyle and poker allows me to do that.

Do you think players who seek out sponsorships or play predominately live tournaments are wasting their own time?
In some ways it’s better, in some ways it’s worse. For example, their poker game and their ability to think about hands and ranges, is probably getting worse. As they continue to play live they are simply not putting in a sufficient amount of volume online to continue to keep those skills as good as they could be, and depending on the player, as good as they used to be. 

Also, the games are changing and the players I play against on high stakes no-limit six handed are almost completely different from the people I played against back in 2008 and 2009. They play a different style and they play better. These games continue to get tougher and tougher, and the big guys I played with back in 2008 and 2009, now go out to play live and get sponsorships. That’s great for them right now, financially they are probably doing significantly better than they could online. Much of that is variance because for every one Dan Smith or Tom Marchese there are 10 or 20 other guys who tried the same thing but ran poorly in live tournaments. This is not saying anything against either of them because I think they are fantastic poker players, but just in general there’s a lot more high variance and that’s not the way I want to live my life. 

Put it all on the line and hope for something good to happen in a live tournament is not my thing. I just want to grind online and occasionally go to the Aussie Millions or the WSOP and maybe one day run deep. When I go there I’ll be sure to play very well because of all the volume I’ve been putting into online poker, and how I’ve been working on my game.

Do you think the live tournament scene is slowly killing poker because of the high costs of the buy ins and expenses? 
Poker has to overtime come down from where it once was. After the poker boom with Chris Moneymaker everybody wanted to play poker. At the time poker was a relatively new market but with time the games got a lot tougher. When I started playing poker I was a freshman in college and I made more that year than I could’ve, regardless of what my degree was, doing something else. Even if I would’ve been in the workforce for ten years already at that time, I still could’ve made more playing online poker. As long as it’s like that people are going to start trying to play professionally as well. 

Because the reward was so high, in 2008 and 2009 a lot of kids who were capable of critical thinking and beating poker could’ve also gone into mathematics, science or physics, chose to go into poker instead because there was so much money in it. Just like any market, the more people go into it professionally, it’s going to become harder and harder and people are going to make less and less. I expect to make less today than in 2008 despite the fact that I think that I am a better poker player. In fact I also play more games now, back then I only used to play No-Limit Hold’em. Today I mostly play Pot Limit Omaha but it’s just getting harder. It’s going to continue to get harder until it reaches a point where it’s not worth it for an intelligent kid to drop out of college or to consider making poker their living. The expected salary will not be high enough compared to if let’s say, he went to dental school.

So do you think that in the long run people who are persistent now will make more money in the future?
No. I think professionals are going to continue to make less and less and I think that it’s going to get drier. There will be some temporary “booms,” for example legalization in the United States would herald a period of very profitable poker for the professionals. There are still a lot of professionals in the United States that have the potential to lose x-amount of money playing online poker. I think a lot of these people are only going to lose that x-amount of money and then stop. I don’t think those amateurs will be there forever, and also there will be new professionals. There will be those who were professionals pre-Black Friday and decided to stay in the US. They are still good, and they are going to continue to play after it’s been legalized, and there will also be new professionals.  

Also a big poker boom in parts of Asia could really benefit the poker economy but in the long run it’s going to be very difficult for professionals. It’s just the mathematics of the way it works, the casinos take rake, only five to 10% of players are winning and you have so many who are trying to do it professionally. It just gets harder and harder, and in order to make good money you need to be one of the best.

Does this mean you’re already looking into new ventures or do you think poker can still be long term for you?
I love poker and I love the lifestyle. I’m 23-years old and I can basically live wherever I want except for the United States. I’ve experienced things that many people haven’t experienced in their whole lifetime. I love working for myself, being my own boss and I can’t imagine waking up at 6:00 AM every morning to go to work. That would be very difficult after this, but however, I do acknowledge that this is becoming more and more difficult. 

There are other things I’m passionate about like broadcasting. My brother is a broadcaster for the Tampa Bay Rays and my father was a sportscaster for the Philadelphia Phillies. I’m also very passionate about politics and entrepreneurship, and I can see myself getting up for something like that every morning. In the meantime, for the next three-to-five years, I’m probably going to continue to play poker. But to answer your question, I don’t see myself making anything other than poker my primary source of income for a long time. 

People always say that something like the stock market has some similarities with poker, would that be something you could pursue?
Yeah but there are a few major differences between poker and the stock market. The first major difference is that the average person who purchases stock makes money in dollars. Stocks tend to go up in value when priced in dollars because you are putting your capital into a productive asset. If you just have no poker skills and no stock skills and you put $10,000 in stocks you’re going to do better than if you were to put $10,000 in poker. 

The other major difference is, that when you’re investing in stocks there’s no game selection. In other words, the total market dictates the prices and that is moved by some of the best traders and brightest people in the world. It’s almost like you’ve sat down at a poker table and there’s one fish and the rest of the seats were filled with the best players in the world. That’s what the stock market is like, but in poker you don’t have to play against the best in the world. Not only do you not have to play them, but also, unlike the stock market, they do not have exponential more influence on your outcome or the game itself. For that reason I think that trading stock is actually very difficult.  

It’s something you have to invest a lot of time into and it would take me a lot of time to get comfortable with doing. I do think that there are market inefficiencies in long-term investments. I’m very bearish on the US dollar and I think that the fundamentals of the US economy are such that I expect a pretty large decline in the value of the dollar in the years to come. That’s why I’m investing a lot in hard assets like gold and silver. Not only do I think that the US dollar is in a bad situation but European economies are also in bad shape. I’m bearish on the Euro and as long as all these European countries like Greece and Italy and Spain are continuing to get bailouts by increasing the money supply, there’s no reason why that should stop. There’s no indication that it wil,l because if you’re a politician from Greece, what incentive do you have to drastically cut spending? 

Remember the Greeks aren’t paying for it; it’s mostly the Germans who are paying for it and the other productive economies in Europe. This really creates a moral hazard where there’s no incentive for politicians to cut spending. In the United States it’s a similar situation, but we don’t have the moral hazard of other countries bailing each other out. The public has not woken up to the fact that free money isn’t free. When the government spends more money than it’s taking in, and we pay for it through printing money, that’s really inflation. Inflation is a hidden tax on the public because it reduces wages and savings. It’s perhaps the most sadistic tax that there possibly is. 

Do you think reinvesting your poker winnings into gold and silver is going to give you more long term profits than investing that kind of money into poker again?
It depends. I’ve invested a lot of time and money into reinvesting my poker winnings into staking. Back in 2008 I was staking over 12 people who all had very little variance. They all played heads up tables and game selected pretty hard. It ended up being a pretty good idea, but today it’s not that easy to find these opportunities. I think most people lost money staking just by virtue of the fact that you take a player, he’s already going to be paying rake, and then you do a fifty-fifty deal and if it’s not somebody who’s necessarily morally or ethically the kind of person that you want to be staking, he could perhaps quit the deal. He could even steal your money or leave you with a lot of make up. 

So there are so many problems nowadays with staking that I only stake two people. I have complete trust in both of them and they have been doing very well for me. But like I said, there are less and less opportunities like that. The variance that you’re taking on when staking a poker player is a lot higher than when you purchase any financial asset, or gold and silver. With the money that I’m willing to take a bit of a gamble, or to get a higher reward for a higher risk, I will get into staking. When staking opportunities come up that are good you can certainly make much higher returns on investment. Back in 2008 I was making over 100% in a year, and you can’t get that anywhere in the market obviously. Again, it could’ve gone badly. The downside is huge also because what’s the chance someone is going to steal my money, or that something like Black Friday is going to happen?

Are you looking for the small edges and to go for high risk/high reward? I’ve also heard you had a coin flipping service on 2+2 back in the day?
That depends entirely on your bankroll. I originally had a flipping service on Full Tilt and PokerStars where I would flip anybody. Quickly I changed that into everyone I knew because some players were folding. That of course hurts me a lot so I only did it against trusted players. Those players I would flip against for basically any amount between $2,000 and $10,000 and charge them 1%. I managed to do that for about six months and unfortunately ran very bad at the flips. After that, I increased it to 2% and people weren’t too keen flipping against me anymore. I think it was an okay shot and it’s basically what casinos do. They have a lot more capital reserves than I do, and today I would still do it for 2%, but I don’t think many people would be willing to do it for that. 

There’s a lot of variance in it and I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone who can’t handle that variance emotionally. I have had pretty big swings financially and I’m okay with that. I choose to take that on, but I will never get to the point financially where I can’t make back whatever money I have lost doing something like a flipping service. I will always have the money to play in whatever poker games I would like to play myself. The highest stakes that run today are $25/$50 and sometimes $50/$100 so I need enough money to play in those games. After that I don’t think it’s wise to sit on the money you’ve made in excess of that. You want to put that to use.

So what would you be comfortable losing in one day?
I’ve lost 30% of my net worth in one day before. My biggest losing day monetarily was a little over $200,000. I’ve had some big swings, while I prefer not to have those of course.  I’ve never gone into a day thinking I was only going to lose $15,000 max and ended up losing $100,000 somehow because my emotions got the better of me. A lot of people get emotional about it and don’t stop when they know they have to. That’s how you go bust.

I have played Rail Heaven a couple of times and I’ve told myself how much I was willing to lose, and after that I would quit. It never got to that point and I ended up running quite all right on Rail Heaven. I knew how much I could lose, and still have money leftover in my bankroll to play my normal games and make the money back. I’m the kind of person who thinks it’s fine to play Rail Heaven for $100,000 with just $300,000 or $250,000 to your name. The question is, can you make back that $100,000 with the $150,000 you have left? When I played Rail Heaven I wasn’t quite that degenerate, but the answer was yes. I would’ve been able to win back that money in case I lost playing on much lower stakes like $25/$50.

You mention the word ‘degenerate’, are there plenty of degenerate things you’ve done in your life?
No, I think the some of the most degenerate things I’ve done are things like playing Rail Heaven with 20% of my net worth on the line. Or maybe things like running a high variance flipping service. I’m the kind of guy who’s taking these high risk/high reward shots, even if it’s for a very significant part of my net worth. I’m just looking at everything from a perspective of, how can I get the biggest ROI? If you’re trying to take this approach it’s very important to have enough money to go back to your normal games. 

You’re a very competitive guy and everything you seem to be interested in you put a lot of time into getting very good at. Is that a personality thing that maybe runs in the family?
Yeah I mean there are a lot of things that I inherited and learned from my father. He was very competitive when it came to sports. When I was growing up and I had some obligation or maybe missed a baseball game, I could always tell when the Phillies either won or lost. He’d been doing it for almost 40 years but every single game still had that affect on him. That’s the same way I am, and in addition to that I learned so much from him about how to be a good person and how to respect people. In life you meet so many people and it doesn’t matter what their background or financial situation is, he really taught me to not judge a book by its cover. He also taught me humility, to be happy with what I do and who I am when I wake up in the morning. He loved his job, baseball and I’m fortunate enough right now to do something that I love. 

Not judging a book by its cover is something that is extremely hard when you tell someone you’re a poker player, since poker is so easy to judge. Do you think your dad would find it easy to understand why you’ve chosen the path that you’re on right now?
My father was a recreational gambler, and everything he gambled on in life he basically lost money on. He expected to lose, he accepted that and he had fun doing it. Before his passing I had a little success at poker and I was telling him about it. At the time, he didn’t understand how it could be a sustainable long-term thing, and it was the same for my mother. Today she certainly supports what I do, since I’ve been a professional now for over five years. Obviously it’s going well and I don’t think she completely understands it, but she’s finally acknowledges that it’s something that one can do long term.

Being Harry’s son, having the voice you have and the brother who’s in sports broadcasting too, do you think it’s maybe hard to understand for the baseball community that you’ve gotten into this line of work? 
I try to keep the poker world and the Phillies world a little bit separate because of that. People might not understand or think differently about my family, or even my father, based on my profession. People tend to jump to conclusions when they hear you’re a professional gambler or poker player, but I haven’t found it to be a problem. A lot of my father’s colleagues, players and people in the front office think it’s pretty interesting and unique what I do. Among the public and the people that don’t understand poker it might be off putting. Until you understand what something is about, you can’t really expect a person to not prejudge you in a way, and I’m used to it. 

Does this mean you’re still very much involved with the Phillies and you might even be getting into some juicy home game action with the players?
I wish! (laughing) I need to figure out a way to get into them. I’m not that close and I’m not sure how many guys actually play high stakes poker. I’m still involved with the Phillies though, and I still get invited to sing the anthem and go to the stadium. A lot of good people surround that organization so I try to stay close to it, but it’s hard since I’m traveling around the world. I wish I were able to go to more games and get more involved than I am right now. I certainly watch the games wherever I am in the world, and when I get home I catch up with everybody.  

Kane performing the National Anthem before the Phillies’ game versus the San Diego Padres on April 17th 2009. (Photo: Getty Images)

Is the sports world, and the Phillies in particular, still special to you or has it become such a normal thing because you were able to follow it very up close and personal from a very young age?
It’s certainly special. I’m blessed to be born into a situation where I can have that experience. I’m not sure if I would have ever had the same appreciation for sports or athletics that I have as a result of my upbringing. I’m not sure if you know since you’re from Europe but Philadelphia is the biggest sports city in the United States. People get very passionate about their sports in Philadelphia, and sometimes they could get a little bit over the top. That’s good, that’s how you know they are so passionate about it. 

Poker fans like putting players on a pedestal, but when you get to know them a little, you will quickly see they are very normal people. Is this the same for you in the sports world since you’ve been very close to those people, or are top athletes on a different level compared to top poker professionals?
It completely depends on the person. In general the players that I’ve met from the Phillies have been very cool, chill and down to earth. I’ve participated in celebrity Phillies bowling functions or pool tournaments with Ryan Howard and Jimmy Rollins and they are just the nicest guys. Shane Victorino, when he was playing for the Phillies was also a very nice and down to earth guy. Occasionally there’s the guy, where the success gets to his head but you have that in the poker world too. 

So is someone like Roy Halladay a good bowler or does that have nothing to do with being a good pitcher? 
I actually haven’t bowled with Halladay! Ryan Howard is a very, very good bowler and J-Roll could bowl as well. It was fun to participate in those tournaments, and in a pool tournament I once managed to win with former Phillies pitcher Randy Wolf. I might’ve been 15 or 16 at the time and that was so much fun.

The Phillies had a down year after a really good stretch; do you think they can get back to the number one spot in the East this year?
I think it’s going to be a tough season. We’ve lost some talent and some of our good players are getting older. I’m staying hopeful but I’m not going to bet the bank on the Phillies for this season. Right now I think that Vegas have our win total on 84, which is decent. It’s certainly over .500 and that could very well give us a playoff seed if that ends up being true. We’re not the same team we were a couple of years ago. 

Do you think understanding variance, and variance in sports take away from the actual sports experience?

A little bit, but in some ways it makes it even more exciting. It enriches it because I can look at certain athletes with a completely different respect or viewpoint than other people can. A great example was a player on the Phillies when I was growing up called Bobby Abreu. Not many people liked Abreu in the Philadelphia area and a lot of it was because of his intangibles. He didn’t seem like he was trying very hard, and in clutch spots he didn’t look or act any differently. He also didn’t speak English so he didn’t relate to the fans that much. For me, I just loved watching him perform from a numbers standpoint. His on-base percentage was very high. He would hit anywhere between 20 and 30 home runs, steal a ton of bases and defensively he wasn’t bad at all. So he was a very good player, but for me that was just a completely different perspective. 

I actually like having that insight and one of my favorite things to watch are the decisions made by the Tampa Bay Ray’s front office, the team that my brother broadcasts for. I think that they have the best front office in baseball, and they consistently spend far less money than the average baseball team and have far better than average results. I think that’s something to really admire and I love watching what kind of decisions they are making.

But that doesn’t take away from the fact that you’re a Phillies fan?
No, I’m a huge Phillies fan! I’m also a Rays fan, but when the Phillies beat them in the 2008 World Series I was pretty happy about that. 

One final thing, what’s 2013 going to be like for Kane Kalas?
Let’s see, I’m going to make tens of millions of dollars, go to the gym every day and be in perfect shape and accomplish all the goals I would like to accomplish (laughing). That was very optimistic (laughing), but I am planning on continuing to go to the gym, something that I didn’t do during the first part of my career. I think you just feel better in the morning after playing soccer or going to the gym at least three or four times a week. I’m going to be playing quite a bit online, and in the summer I’ll be going to the World Series of Poker to play some live. 

Every year I also host the Vegas Olympics, an event I always look forward to a lot. It’s a $1,000 buy-in event and the way it works is, you randomly split up into teams of four and last year we had 12 people. This year I think we might be able to get 16 or 20 and the nine events are basketball, soccer, home run derby, shuffleboard, darts, pool, ping pong, bowling and beer pong. It’s so much fun and I’m looking forward to it a lot! 

After the World Series of Poker I’ll probably head back to Malta or Costa Rica to play online poker. Also there’s a small chance I’ll audition for Les Misérables. I’ve been singing opera as a hobby for a long time and I love the more classical pieces. They are having open auditions in Georgia, and it’s not likely that I’ll get a part, but it would be fun to try because I miss performing.

Kane’s PokerTableRatings stats can be found here.

Remko Rinkema

Remko Rinkema has covered the biggest poker tournaments in the world since 2008, including many WSOP, EPT, Aussie Millions, APPT, MCOP and Unibet Open events. As an in-depth interview and story enthusiast he tries to do things a little differently. Besides the usual writings Rinkema grabs every chance to appear on podcasts, live streams and in the occasional video.

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In the fourth and final part of this series Jason Somerville speaks passionately about how he views the landscape of…

7 years ago

Jason Somerville – Big Swings and Shots on the High Stakes

This is the third of four parts in which Jason Somerville tells us his life story. In the previous parts…

7 years ago

Jason Somerville – Battling Illness, Teaching Karate and Discovering Poker

Front page photo: Jason with one of his best friends in poker, Vivek Rajkumar. More about him later in Part…

7 years ago

Jason Somerville – Brings Back the Fun in Poker

Having a conversation with Jason Somerville is about as far removed from what most people consider ‘normal’. Words come flying…

7 years ago

Pratyush Buddiga: Spelling Bee Champ Rips US Education System

In the first part of the interview with Pratyush Buddiga you were able to read about his impressive testing scores…

7 years ago

Pratyush Buddiga: Spelling Bee Champ with a Brilliant Poker Mind

Cover photo: With President George W. Bush after winning the Scripps National Spelling Bee   There are smart people that…

7 years ago