PokerListings.com is the world's largest and most trusted online poker guide, offering the best online poker bonus deals guaranteed, over $1m in exclusive freerolls every year and the most free poker content available on the Web.
Robert's Rules: The Business of Winning Bracelets
Robert is another hot-shot player from Vancouver, Canada. (As opposed to John Guth - from Vancouver, Washinton - who took the world championship in event 36.) When PokerListings.com chatted with him after the event, he let us know beating out 2,778 players to earn $673,628 is business as usual.
We had to watch most of the action on a one-hour delay - can you take us through the end of the event from your point of view?
There were two key hands for me. The first was when I took a $1,000,000 pot off Erica on the river. She did not call - bringing my total from $1,200,000 to $2,200,000.
Right after that, I picked up pocket kings on the button. I min-raised and the small blind smooth-called. The big blind raised; and with the blinds so big - and he had pocket queens - he raised to $500,000. So my trap was set up right there, because I'd min-raised the pocket kings.
Once he raised me $500,000, the rest was pretty easy. I was lucky to get set up with kings against queens. It could have been the other way, too - and the result would not have been the same. I believe that was a key hand.
Could you take us through the last hand?
Before the last hand I had about a seven-to-one chip lead. Obviously my opponent would move in with any cards; and I would call with just about anything. When I looked at them - A-K - there was no thinking. I knew my time had come - it was my lucky day.
Was it a lucky day? Were the cards good to you?
I had $1,100,000 in chips yesterday just before dinner. After that I did not gain anything, basically. All I was able to do was maintain the chip stack - without losing, but without gaining. The same thing happened today.
For the majority of the hours - the first five or six levels - I had absolutely no cards. My opponents were around $2,000,000 to $1,500,000 in chips. I stayed around $1,000,000. I believe my patience eventually paid off when the cards came to me.
Which is when you started making moves?
Let's go back a little further. You've been playing for about two years - could you tell us about your experience?
I'm from Vancouver, Canada; and I'm a businessman - so poker started off as a hobby. I went to the River Rock Casino, in Richmond. I have a friend who's really into poker - he's with me here - who brought me into tournaments. We started with smaller ones.
My personal character is that I take things very seriously; whether it's a job, a business or a hobby. I realized that I like the game a lot - because, to me, the poker game is like a business.
You've got to find out who you can trust, who you cannot trust, when you can invest and when you should not invest. I applied my business principles to the poker game. Winning an important hand is like hiring an employee or making a business decision. That's how I feel.
It made me very, very happy to win this tournament. This last year-and-a-half, my biggest accomplishment was a couple of first-place wins at the Friday and Saturday night tournaments at the Bellagio; and fourth place at the Lake Tahoe $10,000 buy-in, which is a WSOP Circuit event. This is my biggest win so far.
You've had a WSOP bracelet as a goal for some time - how long exactly has it been?
Since last year. I realized that poker is not just a game of luck, that there's a lot of skill involved. I read a lot of poker magazines, I study how the professional players play the game - the different moves they make - and the patience they exhibit during the times when there's no cards.
I look at it from an analytical standpoint, because my background is also that of a mathematician. That's where I earned my degree in university. It becomes a combination of the arts and sciences, because of the reading skills. I think if a person has all these skills, then he or she will be very successful.
It seems to have worked out pretty well for you.
Well, luck is a major factor as well. I was lucky in this particular tournament. There were two hands in which I could have busted out. One hand was when I had K-Q versus pocket kings; and I got lucky.
The other hand was when I had 9-Q versus A-Q - I got lucky. Those two hands, when I was able to suck out, were what led me into today.
You played with a lot of luck and a lot of skill today - congratulations.
* * * * * * * * * * *
There you have it - the business of poker, as broken down by the World Series of Poker's latest bracelet-winner. Apply these principles and you too may find yourself in a black tent with Erica Schoenberg for seven hours. It's worth a try.