On the 2+2 Pokercast you said that you picked up on PLO really quickly after jumping into a $25/$50 game. Do you think PLO is that simple for someone with your No Limit Hold'em skills?
Thankfully the level of play at PLO at the time was extremely low. My game plan, when I first played $25/$50, was just to pay attention to what the good players were doing and play tight. Basically everyone was bad back then and I don't really know how I knew that. I guess that somehow I already had some knowledge of the game and if you know simple math you could tell that people were making pretty big mistakes.
Was it more fun to reach the highest stakes at PLO because there was maybe more to the game?
I like playing high stakes No Limit much better because there's way less variance. When I played high stakes No Limit it was almost always heads up, and that's my preferred game. At high stakes PLO it was mostly 6-Max games that ran. But it's afunner game for sure because there are more hands to play. I actually think it's a more complicated game but that doesn't make me decide whether I like it more than No Limit. You get to understand what people are doing quicker and you have to pay attention way more. It's more adjusting as to having a set strategy.
So you're saying that a similar type of opponent could be much more different from session to session at PLO compared to No Limit Hold'em?
Definitely. At No Limit Hold'em I feel like that even if I would never play again I would still have a good view on how to play heads up, and nobody would beat me for a lot of money no matter what, if I would stick to a certain strategy. At PLO it's extremely hard to have one set thing work for you because there's a lot more you can do with the game.
Is it possible to be a successful poker player without being a degenerate in some way?
I think you can but there comes a point where you must have an absolute disregard for money if you want to win. Maybe I've just grown immune to it because I've been so used to it but even when I was young I didn't care too much for money. It was not very useful to me for some reason. I've never met any high stakes player that didn't have a disregard for money. So I guess that's something you need.
Do poker and the easy access to a lot of money, create a degenerate or do the biggest degenerates become the most successful poker players?
The degenerates have better capabilities to play high stakes, just look at Isildur1. He's one of the biggest degenerates in the world and it sort of works against him but it also helps him a lot.
Have you been involved in any crazy degenerate action like prop bets?
Nothing really unfortunately. I haven't done any crazy bets for money. If I ever did make a bet with someone it would not be for money but for having to do something stupid.
Okay, but let's say you were to make a million dollar prop bet with Jungleman right now and he would consider accepting. What would it be?
Probably Super Smash Brothers (laughs). We've had a long rivalry at that game and I know I'm the champion!
Do you have any perspective left on what a normal life is like if you wouldn't have found poker?
It's a little weird because I've been home schooled my whole life. So I've had a little bit different than normal life anyway. I definitely think I would have had a more traditional life, going to college and a nine-to-five, if it weren’t for poker.
Do you think you could ever go to work nine-to-five and live a regular life?
It would be pretty hard to be honest. Also that fact that I'm an extremely lazy person, which I think basically all poker players are, makes it a lot tougher to get a real job. Thankfully I would never have to try to do that. I just enjoy the freedom of being able to do whatever I want much more than a set-in-stone nine-to-five job.
Now I just want to go somewhere like Europe, or elsewhere where I'm allowed to play, for a little longer so I can play. One of the reasons I took a break from poker was because I was too naive. I just assumed that because people were making so much money in poker that it would come back quickly. Pretty soon I will get back into to heavily. It's my job and I can't really take too many breaks from it. I just stayed too lazy too long, that's why my break from poker was so long.
In an earlier interview you said that you've basically fulfilled all your goals through poker. Are there any ambitions you have for the next year or two?
When I said that basically all my poker goals were basically done. I did everything I wanted to do. Back when I had those poker goals they were all very realistic. The goals I have now are very unrealistic. They are not really goals either; it's just something nice I would want like playing in the GSL for instance.
Is it hard for you to set realistic goals?
Pretty much. Setting a realistic goal might be better because you could actually accomplish it. In poker for instance, setting a goal that's pretty hard to get worked out for me. In general though my goals are a bit too high.
If you were to set both a realistic and an unrealistic goal for poker in 2013, what would they be?
A realistic goal would probably be to go back somewhere where I can play and do good at $25/$50 and win somewhere between $200,000 and $500,000. That would be realistic I think. Something unrealistic would be to go on a super heater, win four bracelets and the Main Event of the World Series of Poker (laughs). Playing the Nosebleeds consistently would also be an unrealistic goal but that would also be very nice.
So I guess we'll see you at the Nosebleeds soon?
Hopefully, yeah (laughs).