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Chris Björin: “You're Only as Good as Your Last Tournament”
Chris Björin has been cashing in at the WSOP since 1991 but according to the Swedish pro no matter how good your record is, you're nothing unless you're posting results now.
“You're only as good as your last tournament,” Björin told PokerListings.com in Las Vegas.
It's an attitude that has to be tough in a game where you're expecting to brick more than half the tournaments you play.
Björin has recorded 62 WSOP cashes in his career, the fifth-most in poker history. He's won two bracelets and earned over $5.5 million.
All that has been more than enough to make him the number one all-time Swedish money winner, and it's not even close. He's more than $2 million ahead of his nearest competition, Martin De Knijff.
So, if a legacy was enough to keep you at the top of the game Björin would have a lifetime ticket.
But so far in 2013 the Swede has been struggling. He's only cashed once, a 23rd-place finish in the $2,500 Omaha/Seven Card Stud Hi-Lo event.
Last year Björin cashed seven times for a combined total of $321,630 and he came painfully close to his third bracelet.
“You need patience in these tournaments. Sometimes you have the patience and sometimes you don't,” Björin pontificated.
“When things go your way the feeling is great but that hasn't been the case for me this year.”
Bigger Fields, Tougher Tables than Back in the Day
When Björin got started in the early '90s the poker world was still in its infancy. To put it in perspective, the 1994 Main Event only had 215 players.
“When I started you knew 90 per cent of the people playing at the World Series but now you feel like you don't know anyone at your tables,” said Björin.
For the professionals like Björin it's a double-edged sword.
“The bigger fields mean you can win more money if you're lucky but if things don't go your way it's more expensive than it used to be,” he said.
But unlike a large part of the old guard, Björin is staying competitive in a game where the standard of play has become astronomical.
The secret to his success can be found by examining his WSOP cashes. The majority of them are in non-Hold'em events.
“In Hold'em the new generation is very, very good but in other games it's still possible to beat them,” he explained.