Joe Sebok at the Canadian Open

Joe Sebok
Joe Sebok playing in Event 42, No-Limit Hold'em - Day 1

Among the few big names that made it all the way up here to chilly Canada is Joe Sebok. With his characteristic lighthearted attitude and sense of humor, Sebok starts the WPT Canadian Open optimistic about his chances. On the first break of the day, I had a chance to get Sebok's opinion on this tournament and what we can expect in the next few days.

There aren't too many big pros here for this event, what made you decide to come to Canada?

Well you know, it's the inaugural event so it's exciting. Part of the reason though is that they capped the event at three hundred entrants so only the people who went through the WPT were even allowed into this smaller event. Also it's televised here in Canada, so it's cool stuff all around.

How does the event strike you so far in terms of how the Fallsview is handling it?

Joe Sebok

I love the casino, and I love the area. I think it's phenomenal. The guy on my left is kind of a dick. You know, he's showing me all these bluffs. He's bluffing at all these crazy pots with like deuce-three in the first level so I'm just biding my time. As far as the event though, I think it's phenomenal.

On that note, how do you feel about the level of play here compared to the more established WPT events? How do Canadians play the game?

Joe Sebok

I really don't want to break it down to Canadians versus Americans. I think it's more East Coast versus West Coast. They really don't play as much No-Limit Hold'em over here on the East Coast, so you see a lot more of these hands where players are just calling, and they don't realize that in No-Limit just calling can mean your whole tournament. You really don't want to get involved in hands where you have such a low percentage to win. I see a lot more people limping, and it seems like on the West Coast, we're just a lot more aggressive. There's a lot more raising, attacking and getting people out of hands. Here there's more calling and just trying to see what's going to happen, which I don't think is the right way to play.

With all this in mind, have you adjusted your strategy coming into this event?

Joe Sebok

Absolutely, you have to take it into account. The nice thing about the first few levels, before the antes come in, is that you have that time to discern your table, who's doing what, what's going on, so at least for the next hour or two, I'm just going to be sitting there and playing my cards, not doing anything out of line and just watching other people to see what they're doing.

Are you going to stick around for the North American Championship?

I will be there.

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We look forward to seeing Joe make it deep in this tournament and wish him the best of luck.

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